Southern Christian University

A Study on Romans #1


Please read all of the references. They will help you to get a fuller understanding.

Paul’s Epistle to the Romans has been regarded by many Bible scholars as one of the greatest, if not the greatest, epistle of the New Testament. It has also been reckoned by many as the most difficult to understand of all of the epistles. The apostle Peter said of Paul’s epistles, “according to the wisdom given to him, (by the Holy Spirit) wrote unto you; as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; wherein are some things hard to be understood, which the ignorant and unstedfast wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction (II Pet. 3:15-16).” So there are passages, which require much study and thought in order to understand.


I am hoping that each one of you will put forth real effort in the study of this epistle, and that you will have good understanding of the book when we complete the study of it.


Let us begin our study of Romans by asking the question, how was the church at Rome established? There is no indication from the book itself that Paul or any other apostle had ever been to Rome.  But we know that the church was a great church, for their, “faith had been proclaimed throughout the whole world (1:8).” The church at Rome had been in existence a number of years when Paul wrote this letter to them, for he had longed to see them for many years. (15:23). 


So how was the church at Rome established?  There are several possibilities.  First in Acts 2, we read on that first Pentecost, when that first gospel sermon was preached, there were present Jews and proselytes from Rome.  Some of them could have received the gospel and carried the gospel back home and thus the beginning of the church in Rome.  In Acts the eighth chapter we read, as for Saul he made havoc of the church committing both men and women to prison.  “They therefore that were scattered abroad, went about preaching the word”.  Now, Rome was far from Jerusalem, and it would be a little doubtful as to whether any went to Rome as a result of that persecution, but once people start moving, sometimes they do go to far away places.  There is at least a slight possibility, but I think a better possibility, would be that many Christians went to Rome because of the importance of the city of Rome. It was surely a very important city in the days of Paul. In Romans 16:3-16 Paul salutes, I think, twenty-one people that he had known somewhere else, but they were in Rome.    And, of course, the church could have been at least strengthened in a great way by those Christians that Paul had known from other places. Of course, it could be a combination of two or more of these ways that the church was established. 


But Paul had longed for many years to go to Rome and had not had an opportunity to go, and he still wanted to go.  He gives two reasons here in chapter 1 as to why he wanted to go.  One reason he wanted to impart unto them some spiritual gift to the end that they might be established.  The apostles by the laying on of their hands could bestow those miraculous gifts, and, evidently, Paul knew that they needed miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit as listed in I Corinthians 12:4-11.  And that is one reason why he wanted to go.  Another reason given here in chapter one is, he wanted to have some fruit among them even as he had had among the other Gentiles, and that indicates that the church at Rome was made up primarily of Gentile people.  And then in the fifteenth chapter of the book, we read that he was expecting them to bring him on his journey when he went on to Italy to do evangelistic work, which means that he was expecting them to have a part in supporting him in that plan of evangelistic work in Italy.


But we are pushed for time, so we better just start reading the epistle.  "Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God."   In the Galatian letter he said that God “separated me even from my mother's womb”.  (Gal. 1:15) Now he is separated for what purpose, “unto the gospel of God”.  So Christ called him to be an apostle, an apostle to give the gospel of God.  What about the gospel?  He first promised it through the Old Testament scriptures.  "Which he promised afore through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures.  (the Old Testament)  concerning his Son, who was born of the seed of David according to the flesh."  Some have been ready to contend that Christ was not a son of David.  Well, many Old Testament passages speak of how that God was going to raise up into David a righteous branch. Isaiah 9:6-8 reads, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to establish it, and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from henceforth even for ever! The zeal of Jehovah of hosts will perform this.” Zechariah 6: 12-13 reads, “Behold, the man whose name is the Branch: and he shall grow up out of his place; and he shall build the temple of Jehovah; and he shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon his throne; and he shall be a priest upon his throne (Hebrews 7:25) and the counsel of peace shall be between them both (God and Christ).” Jeremiah said, “Behold the days come, saith Jehovah, that I will raise up unto David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and --- This is the name whereby he shall be called: Jehovah our righteousness (Jer.23: 5-6). Prior to Jeremiah’s prophecy Amos had said, “In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, --- and I will build it as in days of old” (Amos 9:11; Acts 15:13-16). And here Paul plainly states that Christ is born of the seed of David according to the flesh.  So whether we understand all the details or not, the lineage of Christ is traced through David.  "Who was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead, even Jesus Christ our Lord."  Now, Jesus was declared to be the Son of God by a voice from heaven when he was baptized, Matthew three, and again when he was transfigured before Peter, James, and John.  And when Peter said, “Lord it is good for us to be here, Matthew 17, let us build three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah.  The voice from heaven said, this is my beloved son in whom I am pleased, hear ye him.”  But Paul here says, “Who was declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness by the resurrection from the dead.”  Why? The resurrection of Christ from the dead is the crowning miracle of all miracles, because it gives assurance that all are going to be raised from the dead.  When Paul was speaking to the Athenians on Mars Hill, he said God hath appointed a day in which he will judge the world by the man whom he hath ordained, and that man is Christ.  "Whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he has raised him from the dead."  Acts 17: 31.  And so the resurrection of Christ from the dead is the crowning miracle of all miracles. 


"Through whom we received grace and apostleship, unto thee obedience of faith among all the nations, for his namesake."  If you highlight, I think you ought to highlight “unto obedience of faith”.  You know the Roman letter is the primary letter that men have come with idea of salvation by faith only.  And here in the very beginning, Paul tells us that his apostleship was unto the obedience of faith among all nations.  Unless there is an obedient faith, it is not worth anything.  Saving faith has always been active faith, and it always will be active faith.  And while we are at it, you might say the book begins and closes with emphasis on the obedience of faith.  In chapter fifteen in verse eighteen, he says, "For I will not dare to speak of any of things save those things which Christ hath wrought through me, for the obedience of the Gentiles, by word and deed," and again in chapter sixteen, verse nineteen, "For your obedience is come abroad unto all men."  The obedience of the Romans had been made known to others.  And then in verse twenty-six, "But now is manifested, by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, is made known unto all the nations unto obedience of faith."  It does looks like that these quotations ought to put all of us on notice that it takes an obedient faith to bring salvation.  


Christ had called Paul to be an apostle especially to the Gentiles, and the purpose was, “unto the obedience of faith among all the nations for his namesake”.  Verses 6-8, “Among whom are ye also called to be Jesus Christ.  To all that are 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 proclaimed throughout the whole world."  So the church at Rome was a great church.  Their faith had been proclaimed throughout the whole world.  "For God is my witness, whom I serve in my spirit in the gospel of his Son, how unceasingly I make mention of you always in my prayer; making request if by any means now at length I may be prospered by the will of God to come unto you.  For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end that ye may be established."  We have already referred back to Acts chapter eight about how it was necessary for Peter and John to go down to Samaria and lay their hands on those people in order that they might receive a miraculous measure of the spirit.  And in II Timothy 1:6, Paul told Timothy to “stir up the gift of God which is in thee, which is given thee by the laying on of my hands”.  And so Paul wanted to go to Rome to impart unto them miraculous gifts (I Corinthians 12:4-7). 


Now, if Peter had been at Rome, as the Catholics and others contend, he could have done that.  This is strong indication that Peter had never been to Rome, and certain evidence that he was not there when Paul wrote this book. Why would they be short on spiritual gifts if he had ever been there?  "For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end that ye may be established; that is, that I with you may be comforted in you each of us by the others faith both yours and mine."  Anytime brethren meet from one location to another, they ought to be mutually edified by the others faith, and that is what Paul is talking about here, “be comforted in you, each of us by the others faith, both yours and mine, and I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you."  And in chapter fifteen, he talks about how that for many years he had longed to see them.  Oftentimes he purposed, but he had been hindered, but he does not give us the details of how he had been hindered.


Verse twelve, "That I might have some fruit among you also, even as the rest of the Gentiles."  So another reason why he wanted to go was that he wanted to have fruit among them as he had fruit among the other Gentile churches.  "I am debtor both to Greeks, and to barbarians."  The terminology just means that I am indebted to all men.  "Both to the wise and to the foolish."  Why is he indebted?  Christ had mercy upon him and had called him to be an apostle, and he was in debt to do a good job of preaching the gospel to all.  "For as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you also that are in Rome.  For I am not ashamed of the gospel of God:  For it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek."  I believe, we can say that verse sixteen is pretty well announcing what this book is about.  The gospel of Christ is God's power to save.  There is no salvation by the Old Testament religion.  The only way of salvation is through the way of the gospel, through Jesus Christ. 


Verse seventeen, "For therein is revealed a righteousness of God from faith unto faith:  As it is written, but the righteous shall live by faith."  Again, he is quoting Habakkuk 2:14.  As I have already stated, if we had plenty of time, I would like for us to get the setting for that statement, but anyway, God's righteousness is revealed from faith unto faith.  In the first place, the process of living the Christian life is that matter of growing in faith, from faith unto more faith, like Peter said, “But grow in the grace and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.” (II Peter 3:18)  He also said, “but sanctify in your hearts Christ as Lord and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.”  So it is from faith unto faith anyway you look at it. A child of God moves from faith unto faith, his faith is getting stronger.  And as his faith gets stronger, he teaches others and again it is faith unto faith.  And also the law was a tutor or school master to lead men to Christ (Galatians 3:23-25).


Beginning with verse eighteen, he talks about how that God had given the Gentile people up because they hindered the truth in unrighteousness, and three times in the rest of the chapter, he talks about how that God gave them up.  Verse twenty-four, "God gave them up in the lust of their hearts unto uncleanness."  (verse twenty-six) "For this cause God gave them up unto vile passions."  (verse twenty-eight) "And even as they refused to have God in their knowledge, God gave them up to a reprobate mind."  So he is talking about the Gentile people, that they became so sinful that God gave them up.   The meaning of that is that God let them go in the sense that he did not try to restrain them as he had in former days. 


Verse eighteen, "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hinder the truth in unrighteousness."  One of the primary ways in which the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all unrighteousness is through his law of sowing and reaping (Galatians 6:7-8) but there are other ways in which God reveals his wrath against those who hinder the truth in unrighteousness.  "Because that which is known of God is manifest in them; for God manifested it unto them."  They had had the knowledge of God, but they were ready to hinder the truth in unrighteousness.  "For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity, that they may be without excuse."  How can any person consider all of the works of God's creation, the millions of plants and animals, and the order of all of God's creation, and get the idea that all of this came by the process of evolution or a “big bang” is ridiculous.  Just think of the peculiar instincts in regard to the migration of many bird species, of salmons, of sea turtles, and of many animals. And so Paul is saying even God's creation declares, should declare to every accountable person, that there is an eternal God.  All creation shows His everlasting power and divinity that they may be without excuse. Now, there were other ways that God had revealed himself to the Gentile people.  But notice, "because that, knowing God, they glorified him not as God; neither gave thanks."  Those two things are always closely related.  When people are not thankful, they do not glorify God.  Those who glorify God are those that are thankful.  So they had known God, but they did not glorify him as God, neither gave thanks, “but became vain in their reasoning and their senseless heart was darkened.” 


"Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools."  Well, there are a lot of people in the world today that profess themselves to be wise, but according to this reading, they are fools.  They can talk about this animal has been around a one hundred-twenty million years and others they affirm have been around three hundred millions years, and they just act as though they know exactly how everything occurred.  It looks like one of the reasons for the space program is to find out when and how the “big bang” took place, how creation came into being.  "Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God."  Now, that shows how wise they were, doesn't it?  They turned from the worship of the incorruptible God for the likeness of the image of the corruptible man and of birds and of four-footed beasts and creeping things.  They worshiped the creatures that God had created rather than worshiping God.  They were so wise and their breed is still around! "Wherefore."  Remember wherefore and therefore are words that are referring back to what has been said.  Because they did this, they did not glorify God as God, and they did not give thanks.  They professed themselves to be wise and became fools.  And because of this, "Wherefore God gave them up in the lust of their hearts unto uncleanness."  There is that word uncleanness again in the context of sexual immoralities.  "That their bodies should be dishonored among themselves."  Why?  "For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the creator, who is blessed forever.  Amen."  When men are ready to exchange the truth of God for a lie, God is ready to let them go in their rebellious way as shown by this passage and II Thessalonians 2:10-12.  "For this cause God gave them up to vile passions." 


Think of how many people there are in our society today who speaks of homosexuality as just another lifestyle, but God gave them unto “vile passions”.  And remember, the Old Testament scriptures make it very plain that homosexuality is an abomination to the Lord.  Leviticus 18:22 reads “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination and 20:13 reads, “And if a man, lie with mankind, as with womankind, both of them have committed abomination.: They shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.” In Genesis nineteen we read that God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for they “gave themselves over to fornication and went after strange flesh.” (Jude seven). As recorded in Judges chapters 19-21, the eleven tribes of Israel almost destroyed the tribe of Benjamin, and that by God's approval, because they would not give up the homosexuals in Gibeah of Benjamin to be put to death.  They destroyed all the men, except six hundred.  And people talk about it as just another lifestyle!  But this passage says, God gave them up unto vile passions.  "For their women changed the natural use into that which is against nature: (Lesbians) and likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman. (Homosexuality) Leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working unseemliness, and receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was due."  Do you suppose they had HIV or AIDS disease back there?  They had something on that order, according to the reading.  "And receiving in themselves that recompense of their error which was due.”  Just think of all the people that have died because of that lifestyle, and most of the gays are not willing to turn from their sins, but are putting forth much effort to get others to follow them in their ungodly life style, and some of them are putting forth much effort to ensnare our young people. Some in high offices of our government are doing things that encourage such unnatural sexual immoralities.  Let us pray that there will be some good changes by the Bush-Cheney administration.


Verse twenty-eight, “And even as they refused to have God in their knowledge."  People are in a terrible condition when they refuse to have God in their knowledge.  Our government, now for a number of years has moved more and more in the direction of trying to refuse opportunities for the American people to have God in their knowledge, rather than encouraging the American people to have God in their knowledge.  Many today are contending that The Constitution requires separation of church and state, but this is not the case! The first Amendment reads, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”


It is strange that some who are ready to insist on ridiculous unlimits for freedom of speech and press are leading contenders for complete separation of church and state. Some of the liberals in Congress are now saying in substance that those who hold strong religious beliefs, like John Ashcroft, should not be appointed to Cabinet Positions in our government! What was the problem that they were dealing with in that clause, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion”? In the Colonial period they had the problem of “established religions” and people were taxed for the support of those established churches like the Anglican Church or the Dutch Reform Church even if they were not members of those churches. At the end of colonial period, the Anglican Church was established by law in several states.


Please notice the rest of the religious clause, “ or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” For several decades our Federal Court System has handed down a number of decisions contrary to this clause. That first amendment was never intended as a complete separation of church and state, but actually our government is now prohibiting the free exercise of the Christian religion. Think of the contradictions. There were two prayers at the Presidential Inauguration and the chief justice of the Supreme Court, administered the oath of office with the last words, “so help me God”. Such is illegal in our public schools and at ball games and other school events! Don’t you think that those who cry, separation of church and state should bring a case against all of those unlawful things done at the inauguration! It showed how ridiculous some rulings of the Federal Court System have been.


The Constitutional Convention ratified the Constitution in 1787, and soon after it was ratified by the states. The first ten Amendments were ratified December 15, 1791. For more than two hundred and fifty years our government gave strong encouragement to “in God we trust”.


Think how proper moral standards, and respect for human life have degenerated, and how crime has increased since this cut off of “In God we trust”. Let us do everything that we can do to stop this wrong leadership in our government!


"God gave them up unto a reprobate mind, (totally bad; corrupt, depraved, dammed) to do those things which are not fitting; being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection."  Think of the many cases in our society in recent years where the treatment of parents to their children and children to their parents is just absolutely unnatural.  Think of the animal kingdom and how they look out for their young -- nearly all of them take good care of their offspring.  Cows, bears, and tigers have more affection for their off springs than some do for their children today.  "Without natural affection, unmerciful, who knowing the ordinance of God."  They knew what was right and willfully went contrary to what is right.  "That they that practice such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but also consent with them that practice them."  In every way they could, they encouraged that way of wrongdoing, doing all of those things that pertain to a reprobate mind.  Many in our society are doing the same thing, and oh how dangerous, how dangerous!


Chapter Two

Now, we have been reading about how God gave up the Gentiles, and you can imagine the Jews were saying, yes, that is what God did.  They were so sinful that God gave them up, and rightly so!  But then in chapters two and three, he turns and talks to the Jewish people.  If there is any doubt that he is talking to the Jews, look at verse seventeen beginning, "But if thou bearest the name of the Jew and resteth upon the law and gloriest in God."  Then in chapter three, he puts together a number of quotations to show that the law said that they were sinners.  "And whatsoever the law saith it speaketh to them that are under the law."  So in chapters two and three, he is reproving the Jewish people.  They were ready to condemn the Gentile people, but turned around and practiced some of the things that they did.  "Wherefore thou art without excuse, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest:  for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest dost practice the same thing."  I believe that we can all see the reality of that.  A man is without excuse if he judges another man for doing something, then he turns around and does the same thing.  "And we know that the judgment of God is according to truth against them that practice such things.  And reckon thou this, O man, who judgest them that practice such things, and doest the same, that thou shall escape the judgment of God?"  Is he just going to pass judgment on those Gentile people who do those things or is he not going to pass judgment upon all Jews and Gentiles alike? 


Verse four, "Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?"  Verse four is emphasizing the fact that God is longsuffering, that He is a God of forbearance because he wants men to be saved.  II Peter 3:9, "God is not slack concerning his promises, as some men count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance."  I Timothy 2:3-4 says that God, “ would have all man to be saved, and come to the knowledge of the truth.” The purpose of God’s longsuffering is to encourage repentance, but many reject God's longsuffering and goodness because of the hardness of hearts they refuse to repent.  Verse five, "But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up for thyself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God."  If a man does not receive, in the proper way that forbearance and longsuffering of God and it does not lead him to repentance, then what is he doing?  He is storing up for himself wrath in the day of wrath.  That, of course, is when Christ comes, when he will judge all men.  And how is he going to judge them? 


Verse six, "Who will render to every man according to his works."  And again if there wasn't another verse in the Bible, we ought to know that works have some part in our salvation.  God is going to judge “every man according to his works”.  No man is going to do works in such a way that he will merit salvation on the basis of his work as taught very plainly in chapter four of this book, but works still have a part in our justification.  "To them that by patience and well doing seek for glory and honour and incorruption, eternal life."  And so according to the choice of man, those who have patience in well doing, they are seeking for glory and honor and incorruption, eternal life.  "But unto them that are factious, and obey not the truth, but obey unrighteousness, shall be wrath and indignation, tribulation and anguish, upon every man soul of man that worketh evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Greek; but glory, and honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek: 


Verse eleven, For there is no respect of persons with God."  More than one time God is set forth as being a God who is no respecter of persons.  Remember that Peter when he went to the household of Cornelius said, “that God is no respecter of persons but in every nation he that feareth God and worketh righteous is acceptable with him”.  Does this not distinguish God from man? Is it not true that all of us have some of the weaknesses of being respecters of persons, but the Bible says that, “God is no respecter of persons!” All of us need to put forth more effort in this direction of not being respecters of persons, and let us always be on guard against wrong peer pressure!  "There is no respecter of persons with God.  For as many as have sinned without the law  (the Gentiles) shall also perish without the law:  And as many as have sinned under the law  (the Jewish people) Shall be judged by the law; for not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified."  Again that is active, obedient faith.  God has never pronounced a blessing to those who just hear, but his blessing is pronounced upon those who hear and do. 


Verse fourteen, “For when Gentiles that have not the law, do by nature the things of the law."  They realized that certain things were wrong; therefore they did not do them.  "These not having the law, are the law unto themselves, in that they show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness, therewith and their thoughts one with another accusing or else excusing them:  In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men according to my gospel by Jesus Christ."  Think of the latter part of verse sixteen, Paul refers to the gospel of Christ as my gospel.  He surely did not mean that the gospel came from him, but as a partaker of the gospel, the blessings of the gospel, in that sense it was his gospel.  Of course, God had made him sufficient as a minister of the New Testament covenant.  "According to my gospel by Jesus Christ. But if thou bearest the name of a Jew and restest upon the law, and gloriest in God, and knowest His will, and approvest the things that are excellent, being instructed out of the law, and are confident that thyself are the guide of the blind, a light to them that are in darkness." Here Paul really gets around to rebuking the Jewish Christians.  He has already said, if you accuse the other man, and then you practice the same thing, you are without excuse.  And here he emphasizes thou that preachest to others or thou that teachest another, teachest not thou thyself.  The Jewish people with the law were ready to reason, we have the light of God's word, and we are a light to them that are in darkness, especially to the Gentile people. 


Verse twenty, "A corrector of the foolish, a teacher of babes, having in the law the form of knowledge and of the truth.  Thou, therefore, that teachest another, teachest thou not thyself.  Thou that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal?  Thou that saith a man should not commit adultery dost thou commit adultery?  Thou that abhor idols, dost thou rob temples?  Thou who gloriest in the law, through thy transgression of the law, dishonorest thou God?  For the name of God is blasphemed among The Gentiles because of you, even as it is written."  This still holds true today, there are those who profess to be Christians and then live as men of the flesh, and they help to cause others to blaspheme the name of God. 


Verse twenty-five "For circumcision indeed profiteth if thou be a doer of the law; but if thou be a transgressor of the law, thy circumcision has become uncircumcision.  If therefore, the uncircumcision keep the ordinances of the law, shall not his uncircumcision be reckoned for circumcision?  And shall not the uncircumcision, which is by nature if it fulfill the law."  That would be the Gentile people, if they would do by nature the things of the law.  "Judge ye the Jew who, with the letter and circumcision, are a transgressor of the law?"  Now, notice carefully this, here is the new Israel of God.  "For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, neither is that circumcision which is outward in the flesh:  But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but of God."  Philippians 3:3 reads, “for we are the circumcision, who worship by the Spirit of God and have no confidence in the flesh.” Please read again these references in Isaiah about the new Israel of God (Isaiah 49:5-6, 49:19-21, 52:13-15, 54:1-3, 56:4-5; I Timothy 3:14-15; Isaiah 57:19, 66:2; Acts 11:26; Isaiah 65:15). So verses twenty-eight and twenty-nine are saying that every child of God is a Jew in a spiritual sense, but you can ask a lot of brethren, are you a Jew?  And they may quickly reply, “No sir, no sir, I am not a Jew”.  But this passage says, if you are a Christian, you are a Jew, you are a part of the new Israel of God, you are a chosen generation or an elect race of people (I Peter 2:9).  And remember again, that Gabriel said to Mary that God would give Jesus the throne of his father David, and he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there shall be no end.  The house of Jacob today is made up of Jews and Gentiles who have obeyed the gospel of Christ.  They make up “The house of Jacob” which is the church (I Tim. 3:14-15).