The Setup

Romans 3:9–20 (NKJV)

9 What then? Are we better than they? Not at all. For we have previously charged both Jews and Greeks that they are all under sin.
10 As it is written:

“There is none righteous, no, not one;
11 There is none who understands;
There is none who seeks after God.
12 They have all turned aside;
They have together become unprofitable;
There is none who does good, no, not one.”
13 “Their throat is an open tomb;
With their tongues they have practiced deceit”;
“The poison of asps is under their lips”;
14 “Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.”
15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood;
16 Destruction and misery are in their ways;
17 And the way of peace they have not known.”
18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”

19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. 20 Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

Romans 3:9-20

Paul furthers his discussion of the Jews’ assumption of privilege v. the presumed hopelessness of the Gentiles. Paul calls everyone in the world out in one fell swoop. There is none righteous, no, not one! He describes the various types and depth of their sins, finally declaring that they do not even fear God. We all are wretched beasts, disregarding the Lordship of our God. The very law to which the Jews cling for their sense of religious superiority judges everyone the same way, and no one escapes the guilt brought on by their transgression of that law. We are all hopeless in the sight of God and truly stand to face His judgement. We have been set up by our sense of spiritual satisfaction and our empty pedigrees, and we stand before God naked and ashamed. We just don’t know it. Paul has come to tear down the false security and strip us bare so that we can see our need for a Savior, Jesus Christ. The blows are not finished yet. One more big swing comes in the next passage, but the work has begun. We are all unrighteous, yes every one!

Artwork from https://27p8cl3iyobo4cgs2e6ekpg1-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/SRT-Genesis-instagram4s.jpg and https://www.heartlight.org/gallery/2786.html

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