Effective Gospel

Now you, if you call yourself a Jew; if you rely on the law and brag about your relationship to God; if you know his will and approve of what is superior because you are instructed by the law; if you are convinced that you are a guide for the blind, a light for those who are in the dark, an instructor of the foolish, a teacher of infants, because you have in the law the embodiment of knowledge and truth – you, then, who teach others, do you not teach yourself? You who preach against stealing, do you steal? You who say that people should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples?

Romans 2:17-22

Paul experienced firsthand the effect of the gospel which was the “good news” of Jesus Christ. He described how he persecuted the church and how the grace of God snatched him from his former way of life. He began to proclaim the power of the gospel to save. Paul was a zealous preacher who knew that the gospel would provide a way to be made “right” with God and that it was powerful and effective to change lives. The world today needs the radical life changing effects of hearing and believing the gospel. Paul’s first century world was in need of the gospel and he preached to both Gentiles and Jews. In Romans 2:17, Paul points out that the Jews were self-righteous, bragging on their reliance on the law. He understood this because he was once self-righteous relying on his heritage, his learning, and his position in society. Paul points out to his fellow Jews that though they had a physical circumcision as a sign of being a Jew, they needed a spiritual circumcision of the heart to indicate that they truly belonged to God. Paul teaches that both Jews and Gentiles are sinners (Romans 3:9) and that the gospel is effective only if they believe that Jesus Christ is the way to salvation and have a right relationship with God. The gospel is only effective if they believe and then obey.

What about you? Do you see the fruit of the gospel or “good news” of Jesus Christ in your life? Are you more patient and humble, seeking to serve others rather than being served? Ask the Lord to soften your heart to walk in the truth of His Word.

Heavenly Father,

Help me to not just be a “hearer” of the word but a “doer” (James 1:22). I pray that my life will reflect the “good news” of the gospel and that others will see Christ both in my words and in my actions.

In Jesus’ name, Amen

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