Romans 3:27 Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.
28 Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.
29 Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also:
30 Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.
31 Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.
Continuing in the context of this chapter, Paul was directed to address the Jews. The Judaizers were lost and they perceived themselves as being superior to the Gentiles. God directed Paul to remind them that they had been given the law. They should have been walking in truth according to God’s Word, yet they were not.
Thus as we come to verse 27 we see that the Jews had nothing to boast about. Even though they were given the law, they were still born as lost sinners. They still needed to be saved by repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ. The pride of the Judaizers was condemning them. They were not benefiting from the fact that God had given them the law and also expected them to copy out the law for each generation. They had the Word of God right before them and yet they were not taking advantage of that. They were guilty of living in defiance of God’s law.
We have already noted that law keeping cannot save. In Galatians 3 Paul reminded us that the law was the schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ. The law points out our sinfulness and is designed to cause the recipient to see his need to turn to God to be saved.
God points to the law of faith here. The lost sinner must believe in God and they must believe in Jesus Christ as their Saviour and Lord. True Biblical salvation requires more than mental assent. The mind is obviously involved. However, the heart must also be involved. Biblical salvation requires the work of God in the heart and mind of the lost person.
I Corinthians 1 addresses the problem that lost humanity faces. Lost people try to reason everything out. They do so from a corrupted perspective. Until the lost person humbles himself and trusts in what God says, they will never be saved.
In verse 28 we come to the conclusion that man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law. Faith and works can never work in salvation. James addresses the proper place of works. Works will be produced and will be proper after the person is saved. Apart from salvation, a person cannot do any good works. After salvation God requires that the saved person produce good works. This is the fruit of salvation. It is possible because of God’s work in salvation. Lost man often gets tripped up with the fact that salvation is a work of God, not of man. The lost want to do something. That is the way we are trained in life. We need to do something to receive something. However, God declares that salvation is by faith. It is in that absolute trust in God and nothing else. When we talk of God here, we are talking God the Father and God the Son. God the Holy Spirit is involved in convincing the lost person of the need to be saved. God the Father requires righteousness from the person. God the Son provides the only way for man to be forgiven and saved. He is our righteousness.
In verse 29 we are reminded that God is the God of all people. You notice here again that God does not divide people by skin colour. He divides them by ethnicity. There are two basic groups of people in the world: Jew and Gentile. God created Adam and Eve. All people are descendants of Adam and Eve. The anatomy of the Jew is the same as that of the Gentile. The difference is that God chose the line of Shem from which He chose the Jews, through Abraham.
When we look at the Jews over history, we see many good things in their history. Those good things are the result of God’s blessing to them. When the Jews walked in truth, they benefited from God’s blessings. When they chose to reject God, they could still make things and do things, but they did not benefit from that ability.
There are also many Gentiles who are capable of making things. Some are good builders and good designers, etc. However, they do not benefit from those things because they do it just for this world. Genesis 4 shows us this. Cain’s descendants could make musical instruments and they would work with metals. However, due to their rebellion against God, they used those things for selfish purposes. By Genesis 6 we see that the wickedness of man was so great that God needed to destroy the majority of mankind. Only eight people survived that flood.
The flood shows us the holiness and authority of God in a different light. Those coming out of the flood were still descendants of Adam and Eve. They still needed to deal with their heart. Noah was still capable of sinning and he proved that by making wine and getting drunk. He was a stumblingblock to his son and grandson.
In verse 30 of our text we are reminded that there is one God. This true God is the One who shall justify the circumcision by faith, and the uncircumcision through faith. Works cannot save anyone.
In verse 31 we are reminded that living by faith does not cancel out the law. There is a brand of “Christianity” that lives by lawlessness. They pick and choose which laws they will follow and which they will ignore. That brand of “Christianity” is very popular, but it is not Biblical. It will leave many people shocked when they find out they ended up in torment in hell for eternity.
It is quite common for us to want to liberalize the truth. The devil is always there to try to distort the truth. The flesh wants to be coddled.
Paul tells us that true Biblical faith establishes the law. It proves that the law points out our inability to meet Its high standards. It helps a few people to stop fighting against God and get saved. Paul will address this further in chapter 7.
Studying a book verse by verse helps us not to skip over things and to take a closer look at the doctrine that God is teaching. We need to be willing to accept what God says as truth and to throw away the false teaching we might be clinging to. This is only possible once a person is born again.