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   We were finishing up the book of Galatians that I think we had finished that in about two studies. And, I think if anyone had understood Galatians, that they would understand Romans. But I thought it might be good if we would go through Romans this time. It's a little longer book. And I think that we did some time back start through Romans and take the first two chapters.
   Now, the first chapter of Romans, Paul is addressing, and it's a letter to those at Rome, not necessarily to Romans. It's just marked that way in the name of the book, but it is a letter that the Apostle Paul wrote to brethren or saints at Rome. They were not necessarily all Romans; they probably most were. And also, there were some Jewish proselytes there.
   Now, I might go back and mention this as a little of the history of the early days of the New Testament. Jesus had taught His disciples for 3 1/2 years, and then He was crucified. And, He was with His disciples, who became apostles, 40 days after the resurrection, and then He was taken to heaven; But, He told them to wait until they would receive the Holy Spirit, which they did receive 10 days later on the day of Pentecost and, to empower them to go out with a great commission.
   Now as apostles, the word "Apostle" means, "one sent forth", proclaiming a message. And actually, it was a proclaiming of a message, but it was not what today {in Protestant religion}, would be called a soul-saving crusade. Jesus did not come on a soul-saving crusade. Never did He invite people to come forward and give their hearts to Him as Billy Graham does, for example, today, and other Protestant ministers. Never did He try to talk anyone into being converted. In fact, in the book of John, you will read that when He was on the way back up north one time, He was passing through Samaria. And, of course, the Samaritans for some 600 years had been Babylonians that had been moved in there after Shalmaneser of Assyria had conquered the nation Israel in the northern two thirds or three fourths of the land and, had moved all the Israelites out of the land and then taken them as slaves over to the land of Assyria on the southern shores of the Caspian Sea. And, then he moved Babylonians in there. Now they were people of the Babylonian mystery religion spoken of in Revelation 17 in verse 5 as MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS"… She is a church that has had daughter churches come out of her, and they are called Harlots. But it is the old Chaldean mystery, or Babylonian mystery pagan religion, with the name of Christ tacked on, with grace made a key doctrine. But, it was grace turned into license, or the Bible words it lasciviousness, which is licensed to disobey.
   Now, as the apostles started out, it's good to have this little background before we start, as the apostle started out, they met with quite a lot of opposition immediately. And the immediate first opposition came fRomans Jews, and Jews who would not accept Christ as the Messiah. And, so the first preaching of the apostles was pretty much their testimony that they were eyewitnesses to the fact of the resurrection of Christ, proving that He was the Messiah. They had spent 3 1/2 years, almost every single day with Him before His crucifixion. And after His death and resurrection, they had spent 40 days with Him. And therefore, they were eyewitnesses of the fact that it was the identical same man that they had been with for 3 1/2 years who was resurrected fRomans the dead, proving His Messiahship.
   Now, the Jewish converts, meantime, and I explained this in a former Bible study that we had here; I think that was while we were going through Galatians that under the Old Testament, there were four types of law. Israel was made a church and a state; it was a civil state as well as a church. But as a church, God never had given them the Holy Spirit, only the prophets were given the Holy Spirit. But you see, at the time of Adam and Eve, at the creation of man, when Adam and Eve had rejected God, they rejected Him as the Revealer of knowledge and the source of basic knowledge. They also rejected Him as their God and their Savior Spiritually, but they also rejected Him as their ruler or governor or the one to rule them, so far as even a civil government would be concerned. You see, the angels had inhabited the earth prior to that and the Government of God had been set up, and the throne was set on earth with the Archangel Lucifer ruling in the throne to administer the government of God. But, he had turned away fRomans it and rebelled and rejected the government of God. And so, the government of God was not being enforced in any way or administered. Adam had been given an opportunity to qualify to set on that throne, but he would have to have overcome the former Lucifer, who now is called Satan. In order to do it, he would have to reject the way that Satan had turned to and, he would have to accept the government of God and accept God as the supreme ruler over him.
   Now, that's precisely what Adam did not do. And therefore, when Adam rejected God, God drove him out fRomans the Garden of Eden, lest he go back and take of the tree of life and eat and live forever {HWA referencing Gen 3:22} or his children and descendants after him. In other words, God closed off the Holy Spirit fRomans mankind, except those who God would choose and that were preordained, predestined to be called, to have a part in preparing for the restoration of the Kingdom of God on earth, which Lucifer had done away with.
   We need to have all that background in mind when we come to understand the New Testament. Now, God had said then to Adam, in effect, you have made the decision for yourself and for your children who will become the population of the whole world; and therefore, I sentence you and the world that will come fRomans you, to 6000 years of being cut off fRomans me and fRomans my Holy Spirit. You have rejected Me as a revealer of knowledge, as your Ruler in government, and you've rejected My Government. And you have rejected me as a Spiritual Savior. So now, go form your own gods, form your own religions. You go form your own fund of education of knowledge; because, what you took was the knowledge you took to yourself, the knowledge of what is right and what is wrong. Now, you don't know what is right and what is wrong. I was there to tell you, and you wouldn't listen to me. You would not accept knowledge revealed fRomans your own creator. And therefore, you go and decide for yourself what to believe and what not to believe. Form your own knowledge, your own education, your own educational system, form your own government, human governments to rule over the nations that will come fRomans you over the earth, form your own religions and your own gods and form your own type of society since you've rejected my way of life. You can't even have my kind of society."
   Now what we have had since, is that many nations have risen up, all descended fRomans Adam and Eve. And, they have formed their own gods. They began to worship idols. And for example, I just came back fRomans China, and the most ancient religion that we know of in China was just ancestor worship. They had ancestor worship about the time that in Egypt they had the worship of, I guess they would have called it Esis and Osiris, or Isis and Osiris, I don't know which way it would have been pronounced, but I think they would give the long "E" sound to the "I". And about that time in China, they had ancestor worship. Then in China, they came to Confucianism and Taoism, which rivaled it. And that must have come about the time that the Greeks and Romans were having their gods like Jupiter and Diana and all of those ancient gods that were nothing but mythology made up in the imagination of men that didn't exist at all in Ancient Greece and Rome. And then a little later, out of India, came Buddhism, and that came into China, and then Taoism. And in India, they came in later to the transmigration of souls and the Hindu religion. And, the world has had its various religions.
   But in the Middle East, after Christ and during the time Christ was there, the Babylonian mystery religion, which had come up in ancient Chaldea had been transplanted into the northern part of Palestine by King Shalmaneser of Assyria about 700 over 700 years before Christ. And the Jews called the people of northern Palestine that is the people fRomans Samaria, called them dogs. They would have nothing to do with them.
   Now, these nations, I mentioned this just because I've given you just a slight background of some of the ancient religions way back there, hundreds and hundreds of years before Christ and back to 1000 years or more. They knew nothing of God. They knew nothing about the Holy Spirit. They didn't have the Holy Spirit.
   Now, what were these when these religions got started? Well, immediately after the flood, a religion was started by one mentioned in the 10th chapter of the book of Genesis who built Nineveh and other cities. Nimrod and his mother-wife, she seemed to be both a mother and a wife. I don't know how that was all mixed up. You'll get it in the book "The Two Babylon's." Semiramis and we see a lot about Semiramis even yet in Egypt, I mean, in Cairo, and over in Baghdad, and in Damascus, and cities of that kind that are ancient cities. You still see hotels named after Semiramis. And she is the one who started the ancient religions that came first into ancient Egypt and then into the Babylonian mystery religion and other ancient religions. But they knew nothing about God. God had shut them off. It isn't that they had rejected God. God had shut them off. However, there was some knowledge of God handed on down. And because we do find it, it was a perverted knowledge, and they've gotten it all mixed up. And, that they didn't have it in writing, and anything that is handed down by mouth does get twisted and changed and perverted after sometimes in less than one year, let alone the many, many years that passed by.

Romans Chapter 1

   But now, when we come to Rome, Paul is talking in the first chapter about the Gentiles who thought that by that time, the time of Christ, and after in the first century AD, they had come to the place where the Gentiles felt they had developed a great fund of knowledge. We have the so-called great philosophers in Greece and in Athens, and Paul came to them, and you know, they had this idol marked, "to the unknown God". And Paul said that the God that you ignorantly worship, I will declare to you, He said, the God that made all of you and made mankind and all of the nations on the earth and the God that is our Creator and our Maker.
   Well, now in the first chapter of Romans, Paul mentions how these intellectuals had known something of God, but they would not regard him as God, but how they had turned and rejected everything good about God and had been turned to licentiousness and the worship of idols and to homosexuality, and every filthy-minded thing. And that they had looked down on the Jews, because the Jews looked on the law.
   Now then, as we come back to the time in the Jewish religion: First, there was a division among the kingdom of Israel, way back, oh I think that must have been over 1000 years before Christ, in the days right after David died and after Solomon died, and Solomon's son, Rehoboam ascended the throne. And, but, he told the Israelites that he was going to tax them farther than his father ever thought of doing. And so the people rejected him as their king, and made Jeroboam their king.
   Now, Judah stayed, however, with Rehoboam and the tribe of Benjamin stayed with Judah, and that formed the kingdom of Judah. But. Israel now had a new king. The first thing that Jeroboam did was to change the annual festivals in the seventh month to the eighth month because, he was afraid that they would go down to Jerusalem at the Feast of Tabernacles, and there, they would decide to go back to the king Rehoboam and, he would lose the throne he had just gotten ahold of. So, he changed it to the eighth month. Now, also he changed the day of worship fRomans the Sabbath, the seventh day, to what you might call the eighth day you see, the same way or the next day after the Sabbath, which is really the first day of the week. And that's where the Sunday worship started among Israelites. And that was the "Sign" that God had given Israel by which the world would know that they were Israel because, no other nation on earth ever kept the Sabbath, No nation did.
   Now, the Arab nations observed Friday. The so-called Christian nations observe Sunday. And, I don't know if there are any religions that observe a Monday. I am not sure. I think that there might be some religion somewhere. But anyway, the Sabbath had been a "Sign" to identify God because in six days, God had made this present world and created everything in it—the plant and animal life and man. And on the seventh day, he rested. And so the seventh day is a memorial of the creator and creation, which is the proof after all of God. And Israel had lost their Sabbath, and so, they lost their identity. Now, they got to speaking a different language. They lost their language. They didn't speak Hebrew anymore. They lost their identity, and therefore, everybody thought they were Gentiles. Now they moved into Western Europe and then to Britain and, came over here to the United States. But you tell people that we are Israel, and they think you're crazy, but we are. We are Israel who our forefathers long, long ago lost the identifying "Mark" or a "Sign". A sign is something that a businessman hangs up outside his place of business. It shows what kind of business it is, whether it's drugs or furniture or men's or women's clothing or whatsoever, and maybe it's Jones or Smith or whoever; It shows who owns it. It identifies; a sign identifies. The Sabbath is the "Sign" between God and man. You find that in Exodus 31, between verses 12 and 18. And actually, the first sermon I ever preached in my life was on that very Sabbath covenant found in that passage. So, I suppose I will never forget it, I hope.
   And now then, when Israel was taken captive between 721 and 718 BC, and the Babylonian Mystery Religion moved into their places in Northern Palestine, it left them with Judah. Now, a little over 100 years later, between 604 and 585 BC, Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon invaded Judah, conquered them, destroyed totally their temple, the temple that Solomon had built, and moved them out of that land. And, so the land was more or less idle then for quite a while. But 70 years later, God wanted a colony of Jews, and only those of the kingdom of Judah were ever called Jews. God wanted them to go back and build a second temple to be there when Christ would come, which was still going to be 500 years later. And, so He stirred up the spirit of king Cyrus of Persia {1} and that's the way He communicated to Cyrus, not the way he communicated to Moses and the Prophets. But Cyrus somehow knew though, that it was God's will, and he gave a decree to send a colony of Jews back to Jerusalem. Now, there was a little colony established there. Now, that's all it was. It grew into a fairly good size little colony, but it was not Israel, and it was only a small part of Judah. Now, in the book of Ezra, you will find the tribal names of those people who went back, and every one of them are in the tribes of Judah, Benjamin, or Levi.
   Oh, I forgot to mention, that King Jeroboam not only started Israel keeping the Sabbath and observing the feast in the eighth month, but he also exiled the tribe of Levi, which were the priestly tribe. And because they had the highest income, they were a very small tribe, but they got 10% fRomans all of the other people. Now, there really were 13 total tribes, so beside them, there were 12 other tribes, and many of them, most of them, larger than Levi. So each Levite was getting about 3 1/2 times as much money because, he got 10% tithe fRomans the others, about 3 1/2 times as much as the others averaged in Israel, who were mostly farmers and agrarians, but in whatever way, they earned a living. And so, Levi, became one of the tribes of the kingdom of Judah.
   Well, the people in that tribe now, after Ezra and Nehemiah, were two of the prophets sent down there in that group where they built the second temple. Zerubbabel was the governor, and Jeshua was the high priest; And, they were merely types or forerunners of two men in our day that were to build the Spiritual Temple to which Christ will come the second time, that is the Church. And apparently, also to be the two witnesses that are going to preach before the whole world on television that will be transmitted over all the earth. You know what I mean. Apparently, it will be satellite television. How do I know that? Because it says the people are all around the earth are going to rejoice when they see them. And, they will apparently see their dead bodies lying in the street, when they will be killed just 3 1/2 days before the second coming of Christ. Well, anyway, in that colony, which is only a part of Judah and none of Israel, the rabbis later on, after Ezra and Nehemiah, took the rituals that I explained while we were going through the book of Galatians, which were the physical law of the ceremonies that the Israelites had to do every day because, they didn't have the Holy Spirit yet, it was only a temporary substitute. And which, of course, was no longer in force after the reality, the Holy Spirit came, just like the law of animal sacrifices were a substitute for the sacrifice of Christ and were not in use after Christ came and after he died. And on the rituals and sacrifices, they built a complete law. And as I explained, I think before, the Gentile nations had a system instead of the forgiveness of sins. There was nothing like that except through Christ, and other pagan nations never had anything like that at all. That's why I say that the Babylonian Mystery Religion adopted the doctrine of Grace, but they turned it into a license to disobey and did away with the law of God.
   Now, then I'm coming down to the end of this background. They had enforced these rituals and said that they had to observe these rituals to live. Those ritual laws were only for Ancient Israel under the old covenant and are replaced entirely by the Sacrifice of Christ and by the coming of the Holy Spirit and the New Testament Church. That's the main difference between the Old Testament and the New Testament or the old covenant and the new covenant. And now the new covenant is an agreement that has not yet been made, but it is being proclaimed, and we are to live under its conditions, NOW, or we will not make it.
   Now then, a little later on this Simon Magnus that we find revealed in the eighth chapter of the book of Acts got the Babylonian mystery religion going. That religion didn't want any law whatsoever. Now get this, the first opposition against the apostles, was that they didn't believe that Christ was the Messiah and they wanted to enforce the ritual law. In other words, they wanted more law instead of just the spiritual law. They wanted to put the physical laws in too. A little later, the whole thing changed and the Gentile religion was the opposition, and that was a religion against the law, the Spiritual Law, the Commandments of God. They did away with the Holy Spirit. They called the Holy Spirit a third person, an actual being, a person and not just a spirit. And, of course, that doctrine was never finally given universal approval throughout all the universal Catholic religion until 321, the time of Constantine. But nevertheless, it was promulgated and taught even before that. The Trinity doctrine that God is a Trinity, Father, Son. And they call it, that's why they use the term Holy Ghost in the King James Bible. Because in 1611, in England, when the Bible was translated into English, they still believed that the Holy Spirit was a person. So they use the word Holy Ghost, and I refused to use that term. I always say Holy Spirit because ghost is not a right translation fRomans the original Greek word. It should be Spirit. And the Spirit of God, was poured out on the day of Pentecost. It was poured out; it filled people. Now, a person isn't poured out. How's a person taken apart and poured out like water? Now, that's the thing that I'm still working on in writing the book I'm trying to write on, "A Voice Cries Out".
   Well, anyway, now Paul is talking of how the Gentiles had tried to do away with the law altogether in the first chapter and how they had turned to wrong ideas and how they had knowledge that had not retained God in their knowledge, and they had an educational system, and, he corrects them on that.

Romans Chapter 2

   The second chapter, Paul goes after the Jews, who now the Gentiles thought they were so much better than the Jews because they said the Jews just had this whole crazy, Judaism religion, whereas the Gentiles had knowledge. They had gotten their own kind of human knowledge, but it was not the knowledge of God. And, in the second chapter, Paul corrects the Jews because they boasted that they had the law, but they themselves didn't obey the law. They were not obeying it. Now, we went through that. So, I think that we'll just skip that and go right on to chapter three now, if you will, now that we have that background, I think we can go right through it.

Romans Chapter 3

   Romans 3:1 Paul says, "What advantage then hath the Jew?" He was talking about the difference between the Jew and the Gentile. The Gentiles had philosophy. They had all this wanted knowledge, that was all human knowledge and filled with myth and with superstition, but the Jews had the law. Now he's comparing the Jew and the Gentile, and he says, (Romans 3:1)"What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision?" Now, here these early Jews believed in circumcision, you see, circumcision is one of those things that Paul had explained was part of the ritual law and, that as a religious ordinance, circumcision was done away. However, he didn't say that if you are circumcised just for reasons of good health and so on, it is good and should be done or God wouldn't have had it done in the first place. But it is not a religious right anymore and hasn't been since Christ.
   And, then he said, {2} (Romans 3:1)"What is the advantage then of the Jew"?
   Verse 2: {3} "Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God." That is the commandments and covenants of God.
   Verse 3: "For what if some did not believe? shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect?" Now, what Paul had in mind there was something like this, in my book, "The Human Potential". I've come in the last chapter, I believe it's the last chapter, where a lot of people say, "Well, I've seen people that they will profess Christianity and they're supposed to be Christians and, if the way they live and the things they do are Christian, I don't want any of it." In other words, they judge Christianity by the lives of the people who profess to live it but are not really living it properly at all. That's what he's talking about here, if people do wrong and, {4} (Romans 3:3) for what if some do not believe God? "shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect"? Now, notice there it is faith of God, not faith in God. The faith of God is the faith that God himself had, God's own faith.
   Verse 4: "God forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written, {now he quotes the Old Testament} That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged." Now, I don't have the marginal references, but if you do, you'll probably find that it shows where it's quoted fRomans the Old Testament.
   Verse 5: "But if our unrighteousness", {that is the Jewish unrighteousness he's talking about now}, commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unrighteous who taketh vengeance?" (I speak as a man)
   Verse 6: "God forbid: for then how shall God judge the world?" (Romans 7:1) "For if, {See God is going to judge the world, but God is going to judge it through and by Christ because He's turned all judgment over to Christ}. (Romans 3:5) "But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unrighteous, who taketh vengeance? (I speak as a man)" (Romans 3:6) "God forbid…"
   Verse 7: "For if the truth of God hath more abounded through my lie unto His glory, why yet am I also judged as a sinner?"
   Verse 8: "And not rather, (as we be slanderously reported, and as some affirm that we say,) Let us do evil, that good may come? whose damnation is just."
   Verse 8…"Let us do evil, that good might come?"… Now, he's referring there to a type of religion that some had and some even who professed Christianity. They said that since we do evil and God has Grace, and so God's Grace, He can forgive it that that shows the greatness of God in forgiving our sin. Therefore, the more we sin, the greater we make God, and it makes God greater because then He has more to forgive and, that makes Him greater because he's able to forgive more; so, let us sin more. Now, actually, in the early years of Christianity, there was that kind of relation of the Nicolaitans, spoken of in Rev 2. (Romans 3:8)… "Let us do evil, that good may come? whose damnation is just."
   Verse 9: "What then? are we better than they?" {That is, we Jews. You've got to get the "we" and "they," and the "us" and so on, who he's talking about all the way through Paul's writings}. (Romans 3:9)…"Are we, {that is, we Jews}, better than they, {the Gentiles}? {5} No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin;"
   Verse 10: "As it is written, "There is none righteous, no, not one:
   Verse 11: "There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God."
   They were not seeking God. And it's a good thing he says that there, now, I've got that underscored. No one is seeking after God. The Apostle didn't seek after Christ. Christ called them. Peter and Andrew didn't want to find Christ. They wanted to be fishermen, and they were out there in the lake fishing or in the Sea of Galilee, which is really just a big lake, and Christ called them. And you see, as Jesus said, (John 6:44 paraphrased) "No man can come to Christ except the Father draws him," and the Father predestinates and calls those that he has predestinated to be called. Now, I do not think that that means that God knew thousands of years before we were born, that is that I, that the name of Herbert W Armstrong would be born in the year of 1892 and that he would call me, and he knew that 10 billion years before even Adam was created. What I do think is that God has predestinated or foreplaned that a certain few would be called to certain positions when they get to this place. And, the predestination has nothing to do with whether you will be saved or lost at all. It only has to do with whether you were called at this time or whether you are not. But, no man is seeking God, it's God who seeks us. God is the one who goes fishing and gets us, and we're the fish.
   Verse 12: "They are gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one."
   Verse 13: "Their throat is an open sepulcher; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips:
   Verse 14: "whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness.
   Verse 15: "Their feet are swift to shed blood:
   Verse 16: "Destruction and misery are in their ways:
   Verse 17: "And the way of peace they have not known." The way of peace the world doesn't know at all.
   Verse 18: "There is no fear of God before their eyes.
   Verse 19: "Now we know that what things soever the law {6} saith, it saith to them {7} who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God." Now, under the law, in this case, I think he's referring to the Spiritual Law, the Ten Commandments. And you are under the law when you have broken the law, and the law then is over you and demanding your life as its penalty. It is your lord and master, and it demands your life, and that life is going to have to be paid. But Jesus ransomed us and paid it in our stead. 'Under the law' doesn't mean under obligation to obey the law. Everybody's under obligation to obey the Spiritual Law, anyway.
   Verse 20: "Therefore by the deeds of the law shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin." Now, that should be a mark right there. I think in almost every Bible I've used in the last 50 years, you will find that is marked. (Rom. 3:19)…"by the law is the knowledge of sin." Let me just explain it this way. No man is justified by a ritual. They believe that a man atoned for his sins by punishing himself and, that was the Gentile religion. Now, the Jews took the physical rituals, which included circumcision and all these physical fleshly laws, and because, they considered it hurts them and, hard to have to do and keep bothering to do it every day, they said that it was a type of punishment; And therefore, they were using it to forgive their bad sins by inflicting this punishment on themselves.
   But on the other hand, now by the law is the knowledge of sin. The purpose of the Ten Commandments is to tell us what sin is. Later, Paul will say, {paraphrased Rom. 7:7}'I have not known what sin was except by the law' because, he wouldn't have known it was wrong to covet, if the law had not said that. Now, I've got a man that is a very often praying man. And in fact, so much so that he is actually self-righteous, and self-righteousness is one of the sins instead of being so righteous and so good as some people seem to think.
   I think he's talking about the Ten Commandments here because, he said that (Rom. 3:19) "Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them that are under the law…" He's not talking about Jews. They were under obligation to obey the rituals. But he's talking to those that have sinned, and therefore they're under the law, and the law is over them demanding their life. (Romans 3:19)…"that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God." there includes the Gentiles as well as Jews.
   Verse 20: "Therefore, by the deeds of the law, there shall no flesh be justified in his sight"... In other words, all right, let's assume and I'd have to get the original Greek to know whether 'deeds' there and, I think it means 'performance' now of the Spiritual Law or else it means by the physical ritual law; but, I don't think so. I think that in this case, 'deeds' is translated fRomans a word that means 'performance' or 'obedience'. And now by your obedience to the law, I obey the law today. I do exactly what the law says. I love my neighbors. I love God more than myself. I love my neighbor as myself; I'm very good. That still is not going to save me because, if I sinned yesterday or the day before that still is there, and the penalty is still over me, and I'm still under the law, and it's over me because, I have broken it. Everyone has broken the law. And, every mouth may be stopped and all the world become guilty before God, because, all have sinned.
   Verse 20 "Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin." The law tells us what sin is. We wouldn't know that it is wrong to covet if the law doesn't say, (Romans 7:7)…"Thou shalt not covet".
   Verse 21: "But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; (which mean by the Old Testament Scriptures)."
   Verse 22: "Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ… "(Now, not our faith in Christ, but it is the faith of Christ, which will be given to us through the Holy Spirit, that's the faith that Christ gives us, and that is the faith Christ has).
   Verse 22: "Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
   Verse 23: "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;" (And of course, that is a verse that millions of so-called Christians quote).
   Verse 24: "Being justified freely by His Grace (not by our performance of obeying today, we have to do that anyhow) through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:"
   Verse 25: "Whom God has set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, (that is, His blood was His life and that it paid our price for us) to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;"
   Now, I'm glad it says that the 'remission of sins that are past'. Grace does not forgive a sin that maybe you have not yet committed so, that you have a license to go ahead and do it and it's already been forgiven in advance. Grace does not forgive any sin in advance so, that it gives you permission to go and do it. It only forgives sins up to that minute. And I have written that, and other people come back at me, and oh boy do they get angry at that, when I say that! A lot of them, they say that once you're in grace, you're just always in grace and that you can't sin anymore after that. In other words, you go ahead and sin, but God doesn't call it sin anymore, you've been forgiven before you start. That's like we left Tokyo about six o'clock Sunday evening so, we arrived here about, what was it, about two o'clock or three o'clock Sunday, the same afternoon, Sunday afternoon. And, we didn't leave Tokyo until six o'clock that same evening, of course, we passed an international date line on the way, and that's the answer; but, we arrived before we started. (Romans 3:25)…"the remission of sins are past, through the forbearance of God;
   Verse 26: To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
   Verse 27: "Where is boasting then? {You see the Jews were boasting because they had the law, and the Gentiles were boasting because, they had such great knowledge, they thought}. {He says} It is excluded. By what law? Of works? {Now in other words the ritual law?} {8} Nay: but by the law of faith"
   Verse 28: "Therefore, we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law." Now, you have to understand what 'justified' means. Justified means your guilty past is cleaned up and paid for. Justified is a matter referring to your past sins and, you're not justified by your righteousness today. You're justified by the Blood of Christ. (Romans 3: 27): "Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? {or rituals} Nay: but by the law of faith. (Romans 3:28): "Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law." That is apart from. It doesn't mean without. He doesn't mean you can go on and not have to have the good works of performing God's Spiritual Law. And, I think he is talking about the Spiritual Law there.
   Verse 29: Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also:
   Verse 30: Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.
   Verse 31: "Do we then make void the law through faith? {Because our keeping the law today doesn't forgive us for the sins we committed yesterday and last year. Does that do away with the law so we don't need to keep it?} God forbid: {He says}, yea, we establish the law." Even that faith establishes it. But if you break it, you still have to keep it today. And if you didn't keep it yesterday, it takes the blood of Christ to erase it, and your performance today won't do it nor the rituals won't do it.

Romans Chapter 4

   Romans 4:1: "What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as pertaining to the flesh, hath found? "
   Verse 2: "For if Abraham were justified by works, {now it's talking there about not works of the law but by good works, by good performance and obedience.} he hath whereof to glory; but not before God."
   Verse 3: "For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness." Well, he believed and he also obeyed. But Abraham disobeyed on certain occasions too, but he did have faith.
   Verse 4: "Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt."
   Verse 5: "But to him that worketh not but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness."
   Verse 6: "Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, under whom God imputed righteousness without works,"
   Verse 7: "Saying, Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered."
   Verse 8: "Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin."
   Verse 9: "Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also? For we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness."
   Verse 10: "How was it then reckoned? When he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision." {Before he was circumcised.}
   Verse 11: "And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised; that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness might be imputed unto them also."
   You see, it isn't just that you believe and then go out and sin and do not obey. It is, what he's trying to get at here is that we cannot obey God's law and live the perfect life in our own strength alone. It takes the faith to trust God to help us through the Holy Spirit. Now, later, you will find in Galatians and also back in James how Abraham was not justified by faith alone, but also by works, his performance, his belief resulted in obedience.
   Verse 12: "And the father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision only, but who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised.
   Verse 13: "For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham or to his seed, {meaning Christ} through the law, but through the righteousness of faith."
   Verse 14: "For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise is made of none effect:"
   Verse 15: "Because the law works wrath: {because, when you break it, the penalty is death, and that's the wrath} for where no law is, there is no transgression." Now, I used that as an argument of people trying to argue about the fact that we don't need to keep the Ten Commandments that they're done away…"where no law is, there is no transgression". So, notice that and combine that with what we're going to see when we come to the fifth chapter. I used that in proving that the law didn't just start when God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses, the law started with Adam. I'll come back to that later when we get to the fifth chapter.
   Verse 16: "Therefore, it is of faith, that it might be by grace; {that is, which is an undeserved pardon or free gift} to the end that the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all," {Abraham is the father of the so-called 'faithful'.}
   Verse 17: "(As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were."
   Verse 18: "Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be." {That is quoting what God said to Abraham.}
   Verse 19: "And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about a hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb:" {who was sterile and could not have a child but, God performed a miracle, so she did have a child in her old age. I think she was, what? Was she, 90 or was it 98 when Isaac was born? And Abraham married again when he was about 146 years old and had six sons, and it doesn't name the daughters. I would assume there must have been as many daughters}.
   Verse 20: He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;
   Verse 21: "And being fully persuaded that, what {God} he had promised, he was able also to perform." Now, there is the definition of faith that God will perform what He has promised. And you know, all you had to do, is just you know, He will do it. And it doesn't depend on what you see, how you feel anything about it. It's just that God has promised it and He tells you what the conditions are, and you perform those conditions, it's got to happen.
   Verse 22: "And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness."
   Verse 23: "Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him;"
   Verse 24: "But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe in Him that raised up Jesus our Lord fRomans the dead;"
   Verse 25: "Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification."
   Sometimes I think I would almost like to just rewrite this whole book of Romans and put it in language that everyone would understand. But I would have to put it in my own language. I couldn't just make a transliteration and still make it plain.

Romans Chapter 5

   Romans 5:1: "Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:"
   Verse 2: "By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God."
   Verse 3: "And not only so, {8} but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; "
   Verse 4: "And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
   Verse 5: "And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit...{Now, that's another sentence right there that I have underscored} …"The love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit."
   Now, love is the fulfilling of the law, but the love we have, the love with which we were born, the love that we have developed in our life will not fulfill the Spiritual Law of God. It takes a Spiritual Love to fulfill that Spiritual Law and, we were not born with it and we cannot develop it. So it takes the love of God which, He gives us!
   Now, so few people understand what the two things I've been showing here. God not only gives us His love; The Holy Spirit is the love of God. That's what He infuse to us and puts within us the very love of God. A love we never had before. That's a new kind of love that comes into it. Also it's a new kind of faith which we never had. People say, "Well, I just can't seem to work up faith." Well, the faith we need is not something we work up. The faith we need is what God gives us through the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit puts that faith in us. We don't work it up. And, how does the Holy Spirit put it in us? Well it's the Faith of Christ. It's the same faith that Christ used to walk on the water that He used to raise the dead and heal the sick. It's the same love that God has and, the love God has for all of those that He has created. And I don't think that most people in the church really get that, that we are to have a divine love, a divine faith that was not born in us and that we cannot produce and work up, that it's something that God will give us. And that's by Grace, an unmerited gift. (Romans 5:5) …"the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit, which is given unto us". That, that love comes by the Holy Spirit but, it is given to us.
   Verse 6: "For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly."
   Verse 7: "For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: {the average human isn't gonna just die for some righteous man} yet peradventure for a good man, some would even dare to die."
   Verse 8: "But God commanded His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." {And, gave His life for us before we've ever even became righteous. And while we were terrible sinners, that we might become righteous.}
   Verse 9: "Much more then, being now justified by His blood, we shall be delivered fRomans wrath through Him." {And, that's really the wrath of Satan.}
   Verse 10: For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son,…" Now, …"reconciled to God by the death of His Son…" You see, there's so much right there. The Protestant religion leaves God the Father out of it altogether. They only have Christ. Billy Graham just says, "Come and give your heart to Christ, give yourself to Christ". That's all there is to it. Look, if you are going to sit on that throne with Christ or sit in that throne as the Bible has it; Jesus could not sit there until he overcame Satan. Jesus had to conquer Satan. And, where Satan had disobeyed and rebelled against God, Jesus had to obey God. Well if we are going to sit with Him on that throne, we have to do the same thing. Absolutely! And, God is the Law Giver. Now, when we sin that is against God not against Christ and, we have to first be made right with God. God is the one who has eternal life to give. And Jesus never reconciled us to God so, God can give it to us. But, we can't be reconciled to God as long as we are under condemnation for having disobeyed God. We've got to get that past disobedience against God's law; God is the Lawgiver, the Father, I mean. And, we've got to get right with God the Father first. And, the Protestants leave man out. In other words, they leave repentance out. We have got to completely repent. Now Christ makes Grace possible. And, so Christ then, what does He have to do with it? First, He is the one who makes it possible to reconcile us to God. But, you've got to get reconciled to God first, before Christ can save you. Now, get this time order right here, this is very important.
   Verse 10: "For if, when we were, {I said when we came to the 5th chapter and here it is}…"if when we were enemies', we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, {Christ's death reconciles us to the Father and you've got to get reconciled to the father before the son can save you} much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved.. {But how? By Christ's death? By Christ's crucifixion? Does his death on the cross save you? What does it say there?... we shall be saved {by what?} …by his life". {L-I-F-E!} And, that is what Billy Graham doesn't understand. Let's go back just a little bit. "But God commendeth, {back to verse 8}"… God commendeth his love toward us, (Now God is the great love giver, lover) in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." God gave Christ. Now that is what the Father did. He gave Christ to die for us. Then what did Christ do? Well, Christ gave His life then for us. They both had a part in it, didn't they? The Father gave Christ and Christ gave His life.
   Verse 9: "Much more then, being now justified by his{Christ's}blood, {what does justified mean?} Your guilty past wiped out. That penalty that the law has over you and you are being under the law; you're no longer under the law. It no longer has a claim on your life. You're now straight with God the Father who is the giver of the law. Verse 9..."We shall be saved fRomans wrath through Him."
   Verse 10: "For if, when we were enemies, {now, we were still enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son"…, {you've got to get that reconciliation with the Father first before the son can help you but, the Son has to have His part in even doing that}…we shall be saved by his life". By His resurrection! By Christ's resurrection, we will have a resurrection. (Part of Hebrews 9:27 paraphrased) "And, it's appointed all to die one way or another.
   Verse 11: "And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement." At-one-ment, and, be "at one with God". We've got to be made at one with God the Father, as well as, with Christ the Son. And, so many forget that. They say, "Oh God the Father, that's Old Testament stuff." And you know the God of the Old Testament was not God the Father. My Aunt Wylda Armstrong, wife of my father's younger brother, the youngest brother, she joined the Presbyterian Church because, that is where the wealthy woman belonged. And, she wanted to hob nob along with them in the social clubs. And, all she knew about the bible is what little she got there. And, she said, "Well, Herbert she says, I'll tell you, {she was disgusted that I was taking up with a religion in any form whatsoever}. She said, "Jesus Christ of the New Testament I can put up but, that God of the Old Testament I can't stand that God, that harsh stern cruel God of the Old Testament." Now is she lost? Is she going to Hell? No, she died, she's dead and she won't know anything for over a thousand years fRomans now. And, she will come up and, maybe I will be able to explain some of this to her. But, her mind and heart was solely on her social clubs and things of that kind.
   Verse 12: "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; {Now what did I say a while ago when I told you I would get back to it when we got to the fifth chapter?} Roman 4:15 …"where no law is, there is no transgression." {Did the law exist before Moses? If there is not a law, there is no transgression.} Now, look here, "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:"
   Adam sinned and, if there was no transgression, then why did Adam sin? Why did he die then? He died because, he broke the law. 1 John 3:4…"Sin is the transgression of the law". And, death is the penalty of sin. And, God pronounced the death penalty on Adam if he disobeyed. Now he could not have done that unless He explained the law that he would be disobeying. And, they didn't record it because, you see God doesn't give us a full account of so many words in the first eleven chapters of Genesis. There are over 2000 years covered there in just those 11 chapters and, it's so very brief; it's only a small summary. But, sin was included and it is not included when there's no law but, sin was included because, all have sinned even beginning with Adam.
   Verse 13: "(For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law." So, therefore, again sin would not have been imputed if there had not been a law. There was the law and that was the law before the ritual law. Now later He's going to say the ritual law was added because, there had been transgressions of the Spiritual Law. And, it was added to try to help them to live without continuing to break the Spiritual Law. This is all so plain and so simple when we understand it.
   Verse 13: "(For until the law sin was in the world: {that's fRomans Adam up until Moses} but sin is not imputed when there is no law."{So, there was a law.}
   Verse 14: "Nevertheless death reigned fRomans Adam to Moses, {the penalty of the law was being enforced} even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come." In other words, he was a "type" of Christ. Except that he went the evil way and Christ the right way.
   Verse 15: "But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by {9}one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many."
   Verse 16: "And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was {10} by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification."
   Verse 17: "For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ".)
   Verse 18: "Therefore as by the offence of one {who's Adam} judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification…" {That is doesn't mean that it didn't come at that time, because, the world had not been judged as yet, it just not judged but, it is going to be and it means that it came that it would be on all men. First, the condemnation because, of the transgression of the law but, second, the Grace by the sacrifice of Christ but, it hadn't applied as yet to everybody. But, His part of it had been done}.
   Verse 19: "For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one {the second Adam, Christ} shall many be made righteous."
   Verse 20: "Moreover the law entered, {Now that was in the days of Moses} that the offence might abound…" {But you see, they didn't realize what sin was until God spelled it out by codifying the Ten Commandments. But, the law had actually existed whether it had been spelled out to them in so many words or not.}
   Verse 21: "That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto {11} eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord."
   Romans 6:1: {He goes on shouting, (Mr. Armstrong paraphrasing verse 6)}, "What do we say then?" {Shall we all sin, that grace may abound?} Now as I said, the Nicolaitans had that doctrine, that the more we sin, the greater we make God out because, that makes Him so much greater because, He can forgive all those sins, which is a lot of ridiculousness.

Romans Chapter 6

   Well, that brings us up to chapter 6. That 4 chapters I've gone through besides summarizing the first 2 so, I think that some of the writings of Paul which, Peter said, "Paul writes in a way that's hard to be understood" and many do that;

{1} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said Assyria but in the book of Ezra, that he referenced, repeatedly states king Cyrus of Persia.

{2} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said commanded instead of committed.

{3} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong paraphrased this half of the Scripture in Romans 3:1.

{4} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong paraphrased the first half of Romans 3:3.

{5} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said "way" instead of "wise" in Romans 3:9.

{6} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said "says" instead of "saith".

{7} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said "that" instead of "who".

{8} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said "no" instead of "Nay".

{9} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said "us" instead of "so".

{10} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said "the" instead of "one".

{11} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong said "through condemnation" instead of "by one to condemnation".

{12} Editor's Note: Mr. Armstrong says "everlasting" instead of "eternal".

Bible Study Date: June 6, 1980