A Verse Exposition Of Paul's Epistles - Charles H. Spurgeon - ebook
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THE TRUSTED COMMENTARY COLLECTION is a new release of much loved and oft used commentaries.Each commentary is beautifully formatted with every verse given an uncluttered presentation for ease of reference and use. We have taken great care to provide you with each individual commentary as it was intended and written by the original author.Our commentaries are equipped with the very best active tables of contents that drill down from the main contents page to the individual Bible book, to the author, to the Bible book chapter and then to the very verse you are looking to study. These tables of contents have been designed for ease of use and to get you to the exact verse you are looking at.In this volume we give you Charles H. Spurgeon commentary on Paul’s Epistles.The Prince of Preachers, Charles H. Spurgeon (19th June 1834 – 31 January 1892) was not only a wonderful orator but also magnificent with his pen. The sermons he preached touched the lives of thousands. His writings still continue to reach those who read them to this very day. Reading Spurgeon today may be secondary to the impossibility of hearing him but there is no doubt that his words still carry the weight of Biblical truth. Spurgeon is best remembered as the pastor the Metropolitan Tabernacle, London, England. There he enjoyed many years of fruitful ministry, leading people to Christ and pastoring the ever growing congregation of the Church. Spurgeon provided these expositions orally during services at the Metropolitan Tabernacle. He would address a given chapter during the service and over time they built up into this body of work. Because Spurgeon did not tackle a book at a time some chapters did remain untouched by his exposition by the time of his death. In this work the following chapters are omitted because Spurgeon did not provide an commentary on them: Romans 11, 13, 14 & 16 / 1 Corinthians 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 14 & 16 / 2 Corinthians 2, 3, 7, 9 & 10-13 / Ephesians 3 / 1 Thessalonians 2 & 3 / 1 Timothy 2-6. Despite these chapters of Scripture missing from these expositions they still provide an invaluable treatment of Scripture that is as relevant and helpful today as it was when they were given from Spurgeon's pulpit in London in the 19th century.

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MAIN CONTENTS

Romans Contents

1 Corinthians Contents

2 Corinthians Contents

Galatians Contents

Ephesians Contents

Philippians Contents

Colossians Contents

1 Thessalonians Contents

2 Thessalonians Contents

1 Timothy Contents

2 Timothy Contents

Titus Contents

Philemon Contents

Thank You

CHAPTER ONE

Romans

ROMANS

Charles H. Spurgeon Commentary Contents

Charles H. Spurgeon’s Romans Commentary Contents

Spurgeon Introduction

Spurgeon Romans 1 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 2 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 3 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 4 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 5 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 6 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 7 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 8 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 9 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 10 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 11 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 12 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 13 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 14 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 15 Contents

Spurgeon Romans 16 Contents

Thank You

CHAPTER TWO

Introduction

CHAPTER THREE

Chapter 1

CHAPTER FOUR

Spurgeon

CHARLES H. SPURGEON COMMENTARY

Romans Chapter 1 Contents

Verses 1-17

Verses 1-25

SPURGEON CONTENTS

ROMANS CONTENTS

MAIN CONTENTS

Verses 1-17

Romans 1:1. Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,

Paul has many titles, and he delights to mention them in writing to these Christians at Rome. He puts first his highest title: “A servant of Jesus Christ.” He glories in being a servant of the crucified Christ, a servant of him who was despised and rejected of men; so do we. Paul was called out from among men, effectually “called” of God “to be an apostle, separated” — set apart — “unto the gospel of God.” He believed that he was separated for that purpose at his birth; but he was specially “separated unto the gospel of God” on the road to Damascus. It is a happy thing when a minister feels that he has nothing to do with anything else but the gospel; that commands all his thought, all his talent, all his time.

Romans 1:2. (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,)

All the gospel is in the Old Testament as well as in the New, for the gospel which Paul was called to preach was promised afore by the prophets in the Holy Scriptures.

Romans 1:3-4. Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; and declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:

He is as much the Son of God as he was the Son of man. The humanity is as true as the divinity, the divinity as true as the humanity.

Romans 1:5. BY whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:

Paul felt that he was sent to preach among all the, Gentiles. He had a large bishopric; James might keep to the Jews, but Paul’s diocese included every land, he was to preach “among all nations.”

Romans 1:6-7. Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ: to all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

The gospel is good news; and the man who has to preach it is full of good wishes. He wishes the best possible things to everybody with whom he comes in contact: “Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

Romans 1:8. First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.

Oh, I would it were so with us, that we had faith that could be spoken of throughout the whole world! I am afraid that some have none to speak of; these saints in Rome had such faith that the noise thereof went abroad everywhere, and all people wondered at them.

Romans 1:9. For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers;

No wonder that they prospered so well when Paul always made mention of them in his prayers. Some churches would prosper better if some of you remembered them more in prayer. Of course, you all pray for the church of which you are members; could you not set aside in your heart a little space for some poor church that is dwindling down to nothing? Could you not pray it up again? Who knows what blessing would come upon pastor and people if you bore them on your hearts?

Romans 1:10. Making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.

Paul prayed about that matter, and we may pray about our journeys. I like to hear the old-fashioned expression, “Be pleased, O Lord, to grant journeying mercies,” for there are such things; and when the servants of God are going about, with a view to spread the gospel, we ought to pray that they may travel in safety.

Romans 1:11. For I long to see, you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;

He wanted to go to Rome because he felt that he would take something with him. He was a poor man, so he could not take any golden or silvern gifts; but he was a chosen mail, so he believed that he could impart unto them some spiritual gift. Oh, what a largess does a man of God distribute when his Lord is with him! I do pray tonight that, feeble as I am, and unqualified as I am to bless you, yet even this night all of you who are the people of God may get some spiritual gift. I do not know what you want; but our heavenly Father does. May every one of you get, distinctly from his right hand, some spiritual gift to the end that you may be established, that you may get good root-hold, that you may be firmly fixed on the sure foundation!

Romans 1:12-13. That is, that I may he comforted together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me. Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.

Rome was a sink of iniquity; it was the den of the lions, where Nero was, who would speedily devour, like a lion, the minister of Christ. Paul wanted somehow to get into that old city on the seven bills, and to pluck some fruit for God even from the vine that was planted there; but he was hindered.

Romans 1:14-15. I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise. So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.

I do not suppose that Paul guessed that he would be sent there at the government expense, but he was. The Roman Empire had to find a ship for him, and a fit escort for him, too; and he entered the city as an ambassador in bonds. When our hearts are set on a thing, and we pray for it, God may grant us the blessing; but, it may be, in a way that we never looked for. You shall go to Rome, Paul; but you shall go in chains. He had not thought of that plan; still, it was the best way in which he could go. I do not know how he could have preached to the Emperor except as a prisoner; but when he was brought before him to be tried, then he had an opportunity of speaking even to the brutal creature who was called the Emperor of Rome.

Romans 1:16-17. For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

That is the sum and substance of the gospel: “The just shall live by faith.” The law is, “He that doeth these things shall live by them;” but the gospel is, “The just shall live by faith.” “Wherefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God.” The Lord give to us all that saving faith, for Christ’s sake! Amen.

SPURGEON CONTENTS

SPURGEON ROMANS 1 CONTENTS

ROMANS CONTENTS

MAIN CONTENTS

Verses 1-25

Romans 1:1-2. Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God. (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures.)

Paul had not seen the Romans when he wrote this epistle. They were strangers to him, and therefore he begins by asserting his apostleship. “called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God.” That expression should be true of every Christian minister. We are not apostles; but we are “separated unto the gospel of God.” I do not think that we are called to have anything to do with party politics, or social problems, or any such questions; we are set apart for this purpose. “separated unto the gospel of God.” There are plenty of people who can attend to those things better than we can/ If we mind our own business, or rather, if we mind our Master’s business, we who are ministers will have quite enough to do. “Separated unto the gospel of God.” There are some brethren who in preaching are as timid as mice; but on a political platform they can roar like lions. Had not they better take to what they like best, and give up the work at which they are not at home? For my part, I believe that I am like Paul when he says that he was “separated unto the gospel of God.” I am set apart unto the gospel, cut off from everything else that I may preach the glorious gospel of the blessed God to the perishing sons of men. (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures.) Notice, brethren, how reverent the apostles were to Holy Scripture. They had no doubt about its inspiration. They quoted the old Testament, and delighted to make it a kind of basis for the New Testament: “which he had promised afore by his prophets in the Holy Scriptures.”

Romans 1:3-4. Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made the seed of David according to the flesh; and declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:

What a glorious Lord we serve! He is God’s Son: “Jesus Christ our Lord.” In his human nature, he is a Man of royal race: “of the seed of David.” He was a man, therefore he died: but he rose again, for he was more than man:

“declared to be the Son of God with power.”

Romans 1:5-6. By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all notions, for his name: among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:

That is a sweet name for every truly converted man. “called of Jesus Christ.” He has called you personally, he has called you effectually, he has called you out of the world, he has called you into fellowship with himself: “the called of Jesus Christ.” The revised version has it: “call to be Jesus Christ’s.” those who are called by Christ, are called to be his.

Romans 1:7-8. To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.

What contrasts we have in the seventh verse! “In Rome, beloved of God.” “In Rome called to be saints.” God has beloved ones in the darkest parts of the earth. There is all the more reason for them to be saints because they are surrounded by sinners. They must have had true faith, or they could not have confessed Christ between the jaws of a lion, for they lived in Rome, with Nero hunting after Christians, as if they had been wild beasts, and yet they were not ashamed of the gospel of Christ.

Romans 1:9. For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers;

This man, Paul, did a great deal by prayer. I remember a minister, who is now with the Lord, who was thanked by his people for his wonderful sermons; but he said to them, “You never thanked me for my prayers, yet they were the best part of my service for you.” When men of God are mighty in prayer, we owe much to them.

Romans 1:10. Making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.

Paul wanted to go to Rome; but I do not suppose that he ever thought that he would go there at the expense of the government, with an imperial guard to take care of him all the way. We pray, and God gives us the answer to our petitions; but often in a way of which we should never have dreamed. Paul goes to Rome as a prisoner for Christ’s sake. Now suppose Paul had gone to Rome in any other capacity, he could not have seen Caesar, he could not have obtained admission into Caesar’s house. The prison of the Palatine was just under the vast palace of the Caesars; and everybody in the house could come into the guard-room. And have a talk with Paul if they were minded so to do. I suppose that, whatever I might be willing to pay, I could not have preached in the palace of the Queen, even in this nominally Christian country; but Paul was installed as a royal chaplain over Caesar’s household in the guard-room of the Palatine prison.

How wonderfully God works to accomplish his divine purposes!

Romans 1:11-12. For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established; that is, that I may be comforted together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me.

Paul wanted his faith to establish theirs, and their faith to establish his. Christians grow rich by and exchange of spiritual commodities; and I am afraid some Christians are very poor because they do not engage in the spiritual bartering with one another. You know how it was in the old time, “They that feared the Lord spake often one to another.” Shall I tell you how it is now? They that fear not the Lord speak often one against another. That is a very sad difference. Oh, for more Christian communion; for when we blend our “mutual faith:, we are “comforted together”; each believer grows stronger as he cheers his brother in the Lord!

Romans 1:13. Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.

Ah! Paul, you could not go when you wished. Caesar must convoy you.

Your Master would have you go to Rome under the protection of the eagles of your empire. God has servants everywhere: he can make Satan himself provide the body-guard for his faithful apostle’s journey.

Romans 1:14. I am a debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.

Paul felt a debt to everybody. The God who saved him, had saved him that he might preach the gospel in every place he could reach. Brethren, if you have received much from God, you are so much the debtor to men; and you are debtors not only to the respectable, but to the disreputable, debtors not only to those who come to a place of worship, but to the dwellers in the slums, “to the Greeks, and to the barbarians; to the wise and to the unwise.”

Romans 1:15-16. So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also. For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ:

Many other people were ashamed of the gospel of Christ. It was too simple; it had not enough of mystery about it; it had not enough of worldly wisdom about it. Paul says, “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ,” and then gives his reason for not being ashamed of it, —

Romans 1:16-17. For it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

The gospel tells us about this living by faith, this believing, this receiving righteousness through believing, and not through working. This is the sweet story of the cross, of which Paul was not ashamed.

Romans 1:18. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;

Those last words may be read, “Who hold down the truth in unrighteousness.” They will not let the truth work upon their hearts; they will not allow it to operate in their minds; but they try to make it an excuse for their sin. Is there anybody here who is holding down the truth to prevent its entering his heart? I fear that there are some such persons, who have come here for years, and the truth has pricked them, troubled them, made them lie awake at night; but they are holding it down, like one who grasps a wild animal by the ears, and holds it down for fear it should bite him. Oh, sirs, when you are afraid of the truth, you may be well be afraid of hell! When you and the truth quarrel, you had better end your fighting soon, for you will have the worst of it if you do not yield: “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold down the truth in unrighteousness.”

Romans 1:19-20. Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

Men who never heard the gospel can see God in his works if they open their eyes. There is written upon the face of nature enough to condemn men if they do not turn to God. There is a gospel of the sea, and of the heavens, of the stars, and of the sun; and if men will not read it, they are guilty, for they are willfully ignorant of what they might know, and ought to know.

Romans 1:21-22. Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

The way to be a fool is to pretend to be wise. A short cut to wisdom is the confession of folly. The near way to folly is the profession of wisdom.

Romans 1:23-24. And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lust of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:

It is very easy to make a beast of yourself when you have made a beast to be your god, as the Egyptians did, when they worshipped the god that they had made in the form of an ox, or a crocodile, or a cat.

Romans 1:25. Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

There are many preachers who have “changed the truth of God into a lie”; and by their exaltation of man, they have “worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever.” God save all of us from such idolatry as that! Amen.

SPURGEON CONTENTS

SPURGEON ROMANS 1 CONTENTS

ROMANS CONTENTS

MAIN CONTENTS

CHAPTER FIVE

Chapter 2

CHAPTER SIX

Spurgeon

CHARLES H. SPURGEON COMMENTARY

Romans Chapter 2 Contents

Verses 25-29

SPURGEON CONTENTS

ROMANS CONTENTS

MAIN CONTENTS

Verses 25-29

Romans 2:25. For circumcision verily profiteth, if thou keep the law: but if thou be a breaker of the law, thy circumcision is made uncircumcision.

Paul is dealing with the Jew, who was apt to think that he must have a preference beyond the Gentiles on account of his circumcision.

Romans 2:26-29. Therefore if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted for circumcision? And shall not uncircumcision which is by nature if it fulfill the law, judge thee, who by the letter and circumcision dost transgress the law? For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.

If this principle were fully recognized everywhere, it would certainly put an end to all that notion of sacramentarianism which some men hold. It is not the outward, not the external, not the form and ceremony; it is the inward work of the spirit; it is holiness and change of heart. Let none of us ever fall into the gross error of those who imagine that there is attached to certain ceremonies a certain degree of grace. It is not so. He is not a Christian which is one outwardly, he is a Christian who is one inwardly.

This exposition consisted of readings from Psalms 110; Romans 2:25-29; Romans 3.

SPURGEON CONTENTS

SPURGEON ROMANS 2 CONTENTS

ROMANS CONTENTS

MAIN CONTENTS

CHAPTER SEVEN

Chapter 3

CHAPTER EIGHT

Spurgeon

CHARLES H. SPURGEON COMMENTARY

Romans Chapter 3 Contents

Verses 1-31

Verses 9-27

Verses 9-31

Verses 19-31

SPURGEON CONTENTS

ROMANS CONTENTS

MAIN CONTENTS

Verses 1-31

Romans 3:1-2. What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision? Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God.

It was a great thing to be a Jew in those old times. When all the rest of the world was in the dark, the Jews had the light: “Unto them were committed the oracles of God.”

Romans 3:3. For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?

That is to say, if they did not believe God, did that make him untrue?

Romans 3:4. God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged.

Whatever men did under the old law, however faithless they might be. God was true and faithful still.

Romans 3:5-6. But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unrighteous who taketh vengeance? (I speak as a man) God forbid: for then how shall God judge the world?

Whenever anybody insinuates that God is not just, Paul protests against such an idea. “No,” says he, “he must of necessity be just because he is God; for how could he judge the world if he were unrighteous?”

Romans 3:7-8. For if the truth of God hath more abounded through my lie unto his glory, why yet am I also judged as a sinner? And not rather, (as we be slanderously reported, and as some affirm that we say,) Let us do evil, that good may come? whose damnation is just.

No Christian man ever did say, “Let us do evil that good may come.” If anybody else ever does say it, his condemnation is most just. Albeit that God, in infinite wisdom, does cause even the sin of man to illustrate the greatness of his grace, yet that by no means excuses his sin, but leaves it an abominable evil, most hateful in the sight of the thrice-holy Jehovah.

Romans 3:9. What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin;

Read the earlier chapters of this Epistle, chapters that are enough to make the heart sick to read them, and to make the head ache with the memory of them, and when you have read them, you will say that Paul has proved that both Jews and Gentiles are under sin.

Romans 3:10. As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

Note in the passage we are going to read how Paul rings the changes upon those two words, “All” and “none.” He begins with the word “none.”

Romans 3:11-12. There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

Yet men come and talk to us about the righteous heathen whose virtues they extol, the imaginary good people, for there are none such actually in existence. Here the Lord himself is speaking, and the Spirit of God is quoting from passages of the Old Testament, which he puts together to describe the character of humanity. How sweeping are all the terms! “There is none righteous, no, not one. There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.”

Romans 3:13-16. Their throat is an open sepulcher, with their tongues they have used deceit, the poison of asps is under their lips: whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: their feet are swift to shed blood: destruction and misery are in their ways:

How true that last verse is of many today! Their sins are destroying them, the lusts of the flesh destroy the body, drunkenness and such like sin are destructive habits, and they make those who practice them to be miserable: “Destruction and misery are in their ways.” What miserable persons, what miserable families, what miserable countries, are made by indulgence in sin! There is no true happiness without holiness.

Romans 3:17. And the way of peace have they not known:

Quietness, happiness, and rest are not known by sinful men. They are not in the way of finding peace.

Romans 3:18. There is no fear of God before their eyes,

How true is this terrible accusation, especially of this present age! Men seem to be casting off all fear of God. Anyone who reads human history will, I think, detect that the present condition of society in our country, religiously, is wonderfully like the condition of France before the great Revolution, which brought so much bloodshed with it. Everything seems loosening, and broadening, and tending downwards; and especially “there is no fear of God before their eyes.”

Romans 3:19. Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all, the world may become guilty before God.

Every man by nature tries to open his mouth, and say the best he can for himself, but it is the object of God’s law to shut every man’s mouth; and when we come to that condition, then there is hope for us. When we have nothing to say for ourselves, then the Lord Jesus will open his mouth for the dumb, and plead for the guilty in the courts of God.

Romans 3:20. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin,

All the law can do is to show us our sin. The law is a mirror, and looking in it you can see your spots; but you cannot wash in a looking-glass. If you want to be cleansed from your stains, you must go somewhere else. The object of the law of God is not to cleanse us, but to show us how much cleansing we need; to reveal our disease, not to find a remedy for it.

Romans 3:21-22. But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe:

You see, we cannot become righteous by the law. Paul says that there is no one who has ever obtained righteousness in that way. We, on the contrary, have so sinned that we never can become righteous through the law; but there is a new way of righteousness, the way of the righteousness of God; and God’s righteousness is much better than the best human righteousness can ever be conceived to be. There is a righteousness which comes to us by faith in Jesus Christ, not by doing, but by believing, a righteousness which is freely bestowed upon all them that believe.

Romans 3:22-24. For there is no difference: for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

I have heard persons ask, “Why do you say, ‘free grace’? If it is grace, it must be free.” Well, we say “free grace”, because the Scripture says, “freely by his grace”; and as the Lord never uses superfluous words, we conceive that we are not guilty of tautology when we say “free grace,”

Romans 3:25-26. Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God, to declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

Not of him who works for salvation, but of him who believes; not of him who merits, but of him who trusts. This is God’s way of righteousness, and we are sent to declare it. Oh, that the Spirit of God may be given to make the declaration acceptable to your hearts!

Romans 3:27. Where is boasting then? It is excluded.

Shut out, done with.

Romans 3:27. By what law? of works?

No, no, the law of works would have allowed us to boast. We should have merited whatever we earned by our own excellence, and we might have gloried in it.

Romans 3:27-31. Nay: but by the law of faith. Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law. Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yea, of the Gentiles also: seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith. Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.

This exposition consisted of readings from Romans 3, and Romans 4:16-25.

SPURGEON CONTENTS

SPURGEON ROMANS 3 CONTENTS

ROMANS CONTENTS

MAIN CONTENTS

Verses 9-27

Romans 3:9. What then? are we better than they?

The first chapter of the Epistle to the Romans contains so horrible an account of the manners of the Gentiles, the heathen of Paul’s day, that it is one of the most painful chapters in Scripture to read. Not long ago, one of our missionaries, out in China, was attacked concerning the Bible on this very ground. One of the learned men said to him, “This Bible of yours cannot be as ancient as you say that it is, for it is quite clear that the next chapter of the Epistle to the Nomads must have been written by somebody who had been in China, and who had seen the habits and ways of the people here,” — so accurate is the Holy Spirit, who knew right well what the ways and manners and secret vices of the heathen were, and still are. But the Jews said, “Ah, but this is a description of the Gentiles.” So Paul replies, “What then? are we better than they?

Romans 3:9-10. No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentile, that they are all under sin; as it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

Then he selects passages out of different parts of Scripture to show what man is by nature.

Romans 3:11-18. There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulcher, with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: their feet are swift to shed blood: destruction and misery are in their ways: and the way of peace have they not known: there is no fear of God before their eyes.

These are all quotations from Old Testament Scriptures, from their own psalmists and prophets, from whom Paul quotes to the Jews so that they might see what their own character was by nature.

Romans 3:19. Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

The law was given to the Jews, and the descriptions which it gives must be descriptions of the Jews “Therefore,” says Paul, “as Gentile mouths have been already stopped by the descriptions of their vices, you also, the favored people of God, have your mouths stopped by the descriptions of yourselves taken from your own prophets.”

Romans 3:20. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh —

Whether Jew or Gentile, —

Romans 3:20-21. Be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. But now —

Since man is lost, since man is guilty, —

Romans 3:21-27. The righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets: even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past through the forbearance of God, to declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. Where is boasting then?

If salvation is given to the guilty, and if all are guilty, — if no one can claim exemption, and yet salvation is freely given, — what then? Why, salvation must be purely by the grace of God; so let grace have all the honour. “Where is boasting then?”

Romans 3:27. It is excluded. By what law of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.

The law of works sometimes aids boasting, for a man rejoices and glories in what he has done; yet the law of works ought to stop our boasting because we are guilty in God’s sight. The law of faith does stop our mouth, because we are under obligation to God, and do not dare to boast, seeing that we have nothing of good but what we have received from God.

This exposition consisted of readings from Romans 3:9-27; Romans 5:6-11; Romans 8:1-32.

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Verses 9-31

Romans 3:9-18. What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin; As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one. Their throat is an open sepulcher: with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips: Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness: their feet are swift to shed blood.’ Destruction and misery are in their ways: And the way ,of peace have they not known .’ There is no fear of God before their eyes.

This is a description of man given ‘by prophets in the olden times. “Now,” says Paul, “we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law.” So that this is a description of the Jews, a description of the people who had the light, the best people that then were upon the face of the earth, and if these be the good people, where are the Gentiles, the bad ones, without the light?

Romans 3:19-22. Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who ,are under the law; that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets: Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto ,all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:

There is no righteousness of works on the face of the earth. The law ‘itself describes men as being sinful from their throat to their feet. Almost every member of the body is mentioned and described as being foul with sin. But, says Paul, there is another righteousness on the face of the earth, and that is the righteousness of God’s grace, which comes through believing in Christ.

Romans 3:23-31. For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God: To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith. Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law. Is he the God of the Jews only? Is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also: Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith. Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.

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Verses 19-31

Romans 3:19-20. Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

The law can convict and condemn, but it can never justify the guilty. Its special work is to prove that they are not justified in sinning, and to stop their mouths from uttering any excuse for their sin.

Romans 3:21-24. But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

Now there comes in a new principle, — the principle of grace, which accomplishes what the law never could accomplish; that is, the free justification of all the guilty ones who believe in Jesus. And this justification is a righteous one, seeing that it is based upon “the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:” —

Romans 3:25-27. Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; to declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.

Faith’s empty hand receives the free gift of grace, and that very fact excludes all boasting.

Romans 3:28-31. Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law. Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also: seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith. Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.

This exposition consisted of readings from Romans 3:19-31; and Romans 4:1-21.

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CHAPTER NINE

Chapter 4

CHAPTER TEN

Spurgeon

CHARLES H. SPURGEON COMMENTARY

Romans Chapter 4 Contents

Verses 1-20

Verses 1-21

Verses 1-25

Verses 16-25

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Verses 1-20

Romans 4:1-3. What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

He stands as the great Father of believers, and this is the charter given to him, and given to all believers in him. “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him for righteousness.”

Romans 4:4. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

That is to say, to him who hopes to be saved by his works, to whom salvation is of merit. He has worked for the reward. He has earned it. Do not talk about grace in that case.

Romans 4:5. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

This is the man who does not go upon the line of works — who does not rest in his works at all, or bring them as a price to God. “His faith is counted for righteousness.” It is a very wonderful thing that faith should stand in the stead of righteousness, and should make righteous all those that believe in God by Jesus Christ.

Romans 4:6-8. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works. Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.

Instead of being a worker, this man had been an offender — a sinner. God did not impute it to him. He was a believer, and God imputed righteousness to him on account of his faith, and did not impute sin to him. Then comes a very important inquiry.

Romans 4:9. Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also?

Is circumcision so necessary that a man is justified by faith after he is circumcised, and could not be so justified if he were an uncircumcised man?

Romans 4:9-10. For we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness.

How was it then reckoned? When he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Look back to the history. See in what condition Abraham was when faith was reckoned to him for righteousness. Was it when he was in circumcision or in uncircumcision? The answer is: —

Romans 4:10-11. Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision. And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised:

But the sign is to follow the thing signified. He is, first of all, justified by his faith, and then afterwards he receives the token of the covenant.

Romans 4:11. That he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised: that righteousness might be imputed unto them also:

It is a very remarkable fact. A great many readers of the Book of Genesis would never have noticed it if the Holy Ghost had not called attention to the fact that father Abraham was justified by his faith before he was circumcised; and this is the reason of it — that he might be the father of all believers, whether they be circumcised or uncircumcised. “That righteousness might be imputed to them also.”

Romans 4:12-13. And the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised. For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.

For the law was not even given when that covenant promise was made. The law was 400 years afterwards. The covenant of grace was the oldest covenant of all, and it shall stand fast, whatever shall happen.

Romans 4:14. For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect:

If you are upon that tack of salvation by the law, then what have you to do with faith? And what have you to do with promise, and what have yea to do with Christ? You are on a different line altogether.

Romans 4:15. Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression.

That is plain enough. You cannot break a law if there is not any; and thus, through our sinfulness, the law becomes a cause of sin, and never does it become the cause of justification.

Romans 4:16. Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace:

Salvation is by faith alone, that it may be seen to be of the free favor of God, that we may not look to merit or look to human strength, but may look away to the abounding mercy of God in Christ Jesus.

Romans 4:16-17. To the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all.

What a God we trust in — a God who quickeneth the dead. We have no faith unless we believe in such a God as this. We shall need such a God in order to bring us safely to his right hand at last.

Romans 4:18-20. Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be. And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah’s womb; He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God:

Men seem to think that only workers can give glory to God; but there is more glory given to God by one drachma of faith than by a ton of works. After all, works usually generate conceit and pride in us. But faith lays itself low before its God, and gives to him all the glory. God is never more glorified than he is by the believing confidence of his people when difficulties seem to come in the way. He was “strong in faith, giving glory to God.”

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Verses 1-21

Romans 4:1-8. What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.

There is a special blessedness, therefore, which comes to those who, by faith, are under the dispensation of grace. It came to Abraham, and it came to David; yet both Abraham and David were circumcised men belonging to a special race. So the question naturally arises, —

Romans 4:9-12. Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also? for we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness. How was it then reckoned? when he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision. And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised: that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness might be imputed unto them also: and the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised.

The historical argument is a very forcible one. The blessing was not given to Abraham as a circumcised man, but as a believing man; and hence it comes also to all of us who believe. What a mercy it is that there is, in this sense, no distinction between Jew and Gentile now! I hate that plan of reading the Scriptures in which we are told, when we lay hold of a gracious promise, “Oh, that is for the Jews.” “Then I also am a Jew, for it is given to me.” Every promise of God’s Word belongeth to all those who have the faith to grasp it. We who have faith, are all in the covenant, and are thus the children of faithful Abraham; so be not afraid, ye who are the true seed, to take every blessing that belongs to your father Abraham and to all the seed.

Romans 4:13-14. For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith. For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect:

But that would also make void circumcision and the whole of the ancient covenant, seeing that the blessing was given to a man whom God had chosen before his circumcision, and before the ceremonial law had been promulgated.

Romans 4:15-17. Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression. Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, (as it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,)

Not a father of one select race of people only, but a father of all who, in any land, and speaking any language, are believers in the glorious Jehovah, who is the God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob.

Romans 4:17. Before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.

Abraham was a believer in the God of resurrection, expecting to see Isaac raised up from the dead if he did actually offer him as a sacrifice to God. He was a believer in things that were not yet apparent to him, looking forward to them, and expecting to see them in due time; believing in them because he believed in God, who “calleth those things which be not as though they were.”

Romans 4:18-21. Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be. And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah’s womb: he staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God; and being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.

This exposition consisted of readings from Romans 3:19-31; and Romans 4:1-21.

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Verses 1-25

Romans 4:1. What shall we say then that Abraham our father as pertaining to the flesh, hath found?

What blessings did really come to Abraham, the father of the faithful? What is the nature of that covenant of grace which God made with him?

Romans 4:2. For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.

Certainly, before God, Abraham neither gloried nor yet was justified by his works.

Romans 4:3. For what saith the scripture?

That is the question for us always to ask, “What saith the Scripture?”

Romans 4:3. Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

There is no doubt about that point, for in Genesis 15:6 we read, “He believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness.”

Romans 4:4. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

He gets what he earns, what he deserves to have, what he receives is “not reckoned of grace, but of debt.”

Romans 4:5-8. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.

So then it seems that the blessings of salvation come to men through faith, and not through their own efforts,-not as the reward of merit, but as the simple gift of God’s grace.

Romans 4:9. Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also?

Is this blessing entailed upon the natural seed of Abraham alone, or is it for others besides the Jews?

Romans 4:9-10. For we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness. How was it then reckoned? when he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision.

If you turn again to Genesis 15:6, and then to 17:10, you will find that Abraham was justified by faith before the rite of circumcision was instituted. The blessing came to him “not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision.”

Romans 4:11-12. And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised: that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness might be imputed unto them also: and the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised.

The vital question is not, “How were we born?”: or “What rites and ceremonies have been practiced upon us?” but, “Do we believe in God? Have we true faith in God’s Word? Are we trusting our souls to the keeping of God’s Son?”

Romans 4:13. For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.

The law was promulgated on mount Sinai four hundred years after the covenant of grace was made with Abraham the father of believers, and so made with all believers, for they are his true seed, and God has entered into a covenant of grace and salvation with them.

Romans 4:14-15. For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect: because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression.

So that the law is not for justification, but for condemnation. It is the law that reveals sin, and that shows sin to be sin; so men can never become right with God by the law.

Romans 4:16. Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed;

That is, to all believers, who are the true seed of Abraham. He is the father of the faithful, and if thou art one of the faithful, he is thy father; and the covenant which God made with Abraham and his seed was made with thee, and on thy account, if thou art indeed a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Romans 4:16-22