I was asked to write a devotional over Romans 3:21-31 for the Kyle Lake Center for Effective Preaching at Truett Seminary. Nothing too serious, but I thought I would post it here for giggles. Hope its nothing too heretical!
Faith and the Law
Romans 3:21-31 is a text that we gain immense theological information from. It helps us to not only understand the character of God, but also how our faith interacts with this character and why our faith is so important to God. However, as well as reading this text theologically, we can also read it devotionally. One verse in particular that strikes me as I read is verse 23. Surrounded by Christian culture within a Baptist seminary, I am reminded that we have all fallen short of the glory of God – there is no distinction. It is easy to cast judgement and lose sight of what is really important, namely, our faith in Jesus Christ.
Not only does this passage remind me that we are flawed, it encourages me of how great God is. This passage reminds us that all may be justified through faith in Jesus. Within day-to-day life it is easy to forget such simple, and yet, such profound truths about God’s character. Not only is good great and powerful, we also see him giving us his grace as a gift. Such a tender description of such a mighty God.
One last reflection I have from this passage is the language about time. Jesus Christ was in the present moment at a point in time. This may sound trivial and an obvious fact, but for us today this is abstract. We live actively and presently with the Holy Spirit. Here, we see God/Jesus in the present moment as the one who is the picture of righteousness and the one who justifies faith of the believer. Sitting here, in Waco, TX, I am glad to worship a God who was manifested in the present moment alongside all people and I am glad we live alongside the Holy Spirit today.
As you continue through the redundancies of life, remember the simple and powerful truths that scripture holds about God’s character. Look for ways that these truths are being manifested in real and practical ways in your life.