Class Notes: 10/13/2022
The book of Romans part 83; Rom 2:4;
In our verse by verse study of Romans last time we finished verse 3 with the Expanded Translation Rom 2:3; "And do you presume this, O Man, who judges those who practice similar things, and are guilty of the same things, that you will escape the judicial verdict from the God?"
When we stopped we were noting some principle from this verse:
Self-righteous rationalism leads to hypocrisy. The self-righteous person attempts to excuse or minimize his own sins and failures by judging the more obvious sins of immoral people.
The overt sins of immoral people are very obvious while the mental attitude and verbal sins of the self-righteous are not recognized especially when they are hidden behind a façade of legalism and human good.
In using the contrast between the two verbs, "prasso" and "poieo,"" prasso" refers to overt obvious sins in contrast with "poieo" that refers hidden sins such as mental attitude sins, sneaky sins, sins of the tongue, judging, slander, and gossip.
An interesting twist is that self-righteous people in establishing their self-righteousness do it with mental and verbal sins. But sooner or later those sins combine with crusader arrogance to make them vulnerable to the whole realm of sin.
Under God's justice one type of sin is condemned just as much as another so even though the sins of the self-righteous person are not as obvious but they are just as sinful.
The moral degenerate self-righteous person is no more justified before God than the immoral degeneracy of the perverted person. This tells us that people's respectability in society does not minimize their sins.
The verb "prasso" is used for the immoral person whose sins are obvious such as in Matt 5:27; for committing adultery), whereas the verb "poieo" is used for self-righteous people whose sins are more hidden as in Matt 5:28; for the person who thinks about committing adultery but simultaneously judges the adulterer.
The self-righteous person judges the immoral person and uses the relative comparison to falsely rationalize away his sins.
The verb "prasso" was first used in Rom1:32; to describe the obvious sins of the reversionistic unbeliever, heathen, or immoral person. Now "poieo" is used to describe the self-righteous people who add sin to sin by judging, gossiping, maligning, slandering, and when he gets a chance he sneaks around and also sins overtly.
The self-righteous man is therefore prone to mental sinning that compounds and intensifies both sin and guilt before God's justice.
God's holiness that is comprised of His righteousness and justice is not a respecter of persons so all sin is equally condemned.
The imputation of Adam's sin plus physical birth with the old sin nature placed man under God's judicial condemnation at birth.
Sin is the manifestation of the old sin nature and the status of spiritual death. All have sinned; all are equally guilty before the justice of God.
While manifestations of the old sin nature are different in different people the source is always the same.
The fact that we sin personally merely proves that we are spiritually dead and that we have an old sin nature that is the source of spiritual death, and that we've been spiritually dead since birth.
Both the moral and the immoral, the religious and the non-religious, are spiritually dead. Self-righteousness has no advantage over non-righteousness before God in the supreme court of heaven.
You cannot build righteousness on someone else's unrighteousness. You can only acquire righteousness by instant adjustment to God's justice at salvation and rebound. John 3:18; 2Cor 5:21; 1John 1:9; 1Cor 11:31;
The judgment of self-righteous people is invalid; they are penalized for their self-righteous accusations and their case is thrown out of court by God's justice system.
In verse 4 the negative volition of self-righteous arrogance is displayed revealing its maladjustment to God's justice. In this verse there is a big difference in the word order between the NASB and the original text the NRSV is the English translation with the closest word order to the original.
Rom 2:4; in the NASB the verse starts with "Or do you think lightly" begins with the Greek disjunctive particle, "e" that separates objects that are mutually exclusive. The distinction is being made between condemnation from God's justice in verse 3 and blessing from God's justice in verse 4.
With this disjunctive particle is the present active indicative from the compound verb "katafroneo" (kata = down; froneo = to think) that means to think down, to despise, to scorn, to treat with contempt, to not care for, to disregard, to think lightly, to have wrong ideas about.
The verb is used for disparagement, and to disparage means to lower in rank or estimation by word or action. It means to speak down to because of a diminution of esteem, depreciation, or detraction.
So a good translation is "Or do you disparage, treat with contempt, or care nothing for? The present tense is retroactive progressive present so it denotes what has begun in the past at the point of God-consciousness and continues into the present, the point of gospel hearing.
The active voice: the self-righteous person produces the action of the verb, namely disparagement, diminution, detraction. The indicative mood is the interrogative indicative where the viewpoint of reality is implied and challenged. The indicative in this case is used in asking a question.
"The riches" is an objective genitive singular from "ploutos." The route of this word in the Sanskrit, "pel," that means to flow, to fill, or to be full. From this comes "ploutos," used here and elsewhere for all the blessings that accrue when God's justice is satisfied.
The adjective "plousios" means wealthy and rich. The verbs are "pluteo", that means to become rich, and "plutizo" that means to make rich.
This is salvation maladjustment of the unbeliever reversionist described in principle. He disparages or treats with contempt God's spiritual blessings that are received at the point of salvation that positionally move the unbeliever from spiritual poverty to spiritual prosperity.
"Of his kindness" is translated from the Greek phrase "o chrestoses autous." The descriptive genitive singular from the noun "chrestotes" that describes God's gracious attitude and acts toward sinners. God's gracious attitude is based on His justice. Rom 5:8;
The same gracious attitude that God has toward one member of the human race He has toward all members of the human race. The doctrine of unlimited atonement reveals this equality.
"Chrestotes" expresses comprehensive fullness of eternal salvation, so it is a common equivalent to "charis" (grace). "Or do you disparage the riches of his kindness?"
Kindness is an anthropopathism or a human characteristic ascribed to God so that we can understand God's attitude at salvation. The word "kindness" can also mean generosity. It is displayed in the doctrine of propitiation whereby God's justice is free to save anyone who believes in Jesus Christ.
The possessive genitive pronoun "autos" is the possessive pronoun "his," so we can translate "of his gracious generosity" or "of his kindness."
"And the tolerance" is "kai o anoche" While the anthropopathism "kindness" is easy to understand from a human frame of reference related to God's essence, "anoche" that means to hold back, delay, or restraint is not as easy until we use a similar word that represents an anthropopathism such as the word "clemency."
Clemency is a disposition of mercy that is an act of compassion. Clemency in this context is related to divine justice and propitiation. It is seen in the restraint of God's judgment that permits everyone an equal opportunity for salvation adjustment to God's justice.
Clemency is directed toward the human race in the continuation of human history. The fact that many people, maybe even a majority, reject Jesus Christ as savior does not diminish or destroy the opportunity for others.
Since Christ died for all, clemency explains why. God does not destroy the entire human race because some members of the human race reject Jesus and remain maladjusted to God's justice.
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