Part 5 – No Fear, No Peace, No Deal
In this section of Romans 3 (verses 10-18) Paul quotes nothing but Old Testament verses to make his point (of the first three chapters) crystal clear – all mankind is dead in their sin and separated from the Lord God, and have no desire, nor ability to worship, love, and glorify the Lord God. In the last two verses of this section (17-18) Paul brings together all that he has said previously by pointing out what unbelievers cannot find on their own (and it’s one of the most important desires of man), and the chief cause of it all.
We see that what fallen man cannot find on their own is the way of peace or the way to peace. Mankind is certainly capable in and of themselves and their methods, false religions, and by mystically training their minds, to experience some kinds of earthy peace, but fallen man cannot attain the ultimate peace – that being peace with God. All of fallen mankind are enemies of the Lord God. Each of us, apart from Christ, have done and will do whatever we can to avoid God and attempt to find our own answers to the questions of ‘How can my conscience be clear’ (to be forgiven), and ‘How to be right with the Creator of the Universe’ (which, because of fallen man’s propensity to suppress the Truth of God’s character and attributes, thereby inventing their own ‘lesser’ gods, mankind will never be ‘right with God’ – justified – by their own strength and means).
Man can only be reconciled (forgiven, justified, adopted) to the Lord God through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ, which is applied to the lives of sinners by God’s grace and His grace alone. Redeemed sinners will then no longer be at war with the Lord, and will now be at peace with Him – His friends – His children – forever.
The chief piece of evidence that proves to the Lord that we are separated from Him is that there is no fear of the Lord in the heart of unbelievers. Some may fear the concept of God because of their insecurities, general fear, and faulty parental upbringing (poor father figure) but ultimately mankind doesn’t care about the Lord God so there is no respect, reverence or awe towards the Lord, and this is seen in man’s refusal to humble himself before God, and to love, worship, and praise Him.
But when the sinner comes to faith by God’s grace there is instantly a holy fear – reverence and awe of the holy character of the Lord God and that is seen in the redeemed sinners’ immediate desire to repent of his sin towards the Lord God. From that point onward, the believer need not fear death or the wrath of God, because the sacrifice of Jesus has taken away that fear of divine judgment/condemnation, and we now have the assurance that God’s wrath was placed on Jesus on the cross. We will be disciplined when we sin because a Father disciplines those that He loves in order for us to grow and mature in the faith.
Thus ends the harsh reality of man’s lost state before the Lord God, and now as we continue through this third chapter we will see clearly that no one will be declared righteous by following the Law, but rather the Law makes us conscious of our sin....and then comes Jesus!