Unlimited: The Law and Judgment
May 19, 2022 154
All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law (Romans 2:12).
Here Paul is referring to the relationship between the law and judgment. In the first clause in this verse, he is referring to the Gentiles: those who are “apart from the law.” This is because the law, and the specific obligation to keep it, was given to the Jews. Paul says here that if they sin, they will perish, whether they had the law or not.
In the second clause, Paul is referring to the Jews. There were the ones to whom he refers as being “under the law.” This refers to the reality that they had been given the law and the obligation to keep it. Paul says that if they sin, they too will perish. The law doesn’t help them at all.
Paul refers to the relationship between law and judgment.
Whether or not we choose to acknowledge God’s law or not, we know that God has a standard of righteousness, and it remains. It’s easy to go through life and think that we will somehow escape the consequences of our actions. But our sin will always catch up with us: the law of cause and effect applies to us as well.
It is only through the Gospel that God has intervened and changed the rules, so that the “cause” is Jesus’ loving self-sacrifice for our sin, and the “effect” is everlasting righteousness for all who believe.
Think back on a time when your sin caught up with you and you had to face its hard consequences in your life. What did you learn and how did you grow from that experience?