He will render to each one according to his works: 7 to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life; 8 but for those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. 9 There will be tribulation and distress for every human being who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, 10 but glory and honor and peace for everyone who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek. 11 For God shows no partiality.Romans 2:6-11
Now, we can see from chapter 1 and now the first section of chapter 2 that Paul is showing that all people, Jews, and Gentiles, need God. Paul is spelling out for these Roman Christians that no matter what heritage you have, whether you grew up in church or you didn’t, you need Jesus!
In this section, Paul gives us a little snippet of what the judgment will be like. He said that it will render each one according to his works. Render means to give back, return, or to restore. Sounds a lot like this principle: You get what you give. You will reap what you sow.
If you are patient in doing well and seek for glory, honor, and immortality, it says He will give eternal life, but if you are self-seeking and do not obey the truth but rather you obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. How do we know if we are doing it right? The difference it seems then between what you will reap is based on what you are sowing. Are you being patient or are you self-seeking? Let’s go a little deeper! Are you being patient in doing well or are you self-seeking and not obeying the truth? It sounds scary and it is. The consequences are dire. In our flippant culture, the quick and easy often overrides being patient. In doing so, we forget that quick and easy can often lead to doing whatever it takes to get it done, doing what we want, even if it means hurting people and going against what is right. We forget we will have to answer for that.
What stuck out to me was the fact that Paul is pointing out that there is no partiality here. Just because the Jews are called God’s chosen people doesn’t mean they will be spared. Each one will take the stand and answer for what they’ve done or not done just like the Gentiles will.
1 Corinthians 4:5 Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men’s hearts; and then each man’s praise will come to him from God.
Now here is the blessing: Paul isn’t saying live right and you will be fine. No, He is saying it doesn’t matter if you’ve lived right your whole life, you will still have to stand for what you have done and not done. He is painting a clear picture, and he continues to do so for this entire chapter and most of the next, of exactly why we need Christ. You want to be found standing in Christ not without Him.
So, hang on, hope is coming but for now…. We must all stand and give an account.
Is there anything you would like to get off your heart and give to the Lord? Pray, He is right there!
All is grace,