CHAPTER 3 3 Answers to Objections.  1[X] What advantage is there then in being a Jew? Or what is the value of circumcision? 2Much, in every respect. [For] in the first place, they were entrusted with the utterances of God. 3What if some were unfaithful? Will their infidelity nullify the fidelity of God? 4Of course not! God must be true, though every human being is a liar,[Y] as it is written:   “That you may be justified in your words, and conquer when you are judged.”   5But if our wickedness provides proof of God’s righteousness, what can we say? Is God unjust, humanly speaking, to inflict his wrath? 6Of course not! For how else is God to judge the world? 7But if God’s truth redounds to his glory through my falsehood, why am I still being condemned as a sinner? 8And why not say—as we are accused and as some claim we say—that we should do evil that good may come of it? Their penalty is what they deserve.   Universal Bondage to Sin.  [Z] 9Well, then, are we better off? Not entirely, for we have already brought the charge against Jews and Greeks alike that they are all under the domination of sin, 10as it is written:   “There is no one just, not one, 11there is no one who understands, there is no one who seeks God. 12All have gone astray; all alike are worthless; there is not one who does good, [there is not] even one. 13Their throats are open graves; they deceive with their tongues; the venom of asps is on their lips; 14their mouths are full of bitter cursing. 15Their feet are quick to shed blood; 16ruin and misery are in their ways, 17and the way of peace they know not. 18There is no fear of God before their eyes.”   19Now we know that what the law[A] says is addressed to those under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world stand accountable to God, 20since no human being will be justified in his sight[B] by observing the law; for through the law comes consciousness of sin.   III. Justification through Faith in Christ Justification apart from the Law.  [C] 21But now[D] the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, though testified to by the law and the prophets, 22the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction; 23all have sinned and are deprived of the glory of God. 24They are justified freely by his grace through the redemption in Christ Jesus, 25whom God set forth as an expiation,[E] through faith, by his blood, to prove his righteousness because of the forgiveness of sins previously committed, 26through the forbearance of God—to prove his righteousness in the present time, that he might be righteous and justify the one who has faith in Jesus. 27What occasion is there then for boasting?[F] It is ruled out. On what principle, that of works? No, rather on the principle of faith.[G] 28For we consider that a person is justified by faith apart from works of the law. 29Does God belong to Jews alone? Does he not belong to Gentiles, too? Yes, also to Gentiles, 30for God is one and will justify the circumcised on the basis of faith and the uncircumcised through faith. 31Are we then annulling the law by this faith? Of course not! On the contrary, we are supporting the law.[H]
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