Paul begins a discussion in this chapter that is continued into chapter 5. The basic question he asks is a good one and is a question that is asked today. Since we are saved by grace through faith, is there an advantage to being a Jew? Paul’s answer is, Yes, there is an advantage, but not the advantage that people think. So what is it? Is there an advantage to being part of the church with the message of the day? If so, what is it?
These are the answers we will be looking for in Chapters 3,4,5. Many Seventh-day Adventists, and other Christians as well, are leaving their churches today, abandoning their faith, thinking that it is no advantage to belong. Paul has answers that will help all of us to stay connected, and will help us to assist those who are struggling with similar reasoning in our own culture today.
Put on your thinking cap – God is in the business of changing our big view of things so that all the little things will fit into perspective. Let’s pray that we will let God tweak our belief system enough to align us with His system.
Read the entire chapter of Romans and then go back over it with these questions in view. Write down your own questions as they come to mind so that you can share them with the group for discussion.
1. Before you read Paul’s reasoning on this major question, write down what you think were the advantages to being a Jew at the time Paul wrote these words in verse 1?
2. According to Paul, Romans 3:2, is there an advantage? What is it
3. Read Romans 3:3. Your answer to this question will either make or break your Christian experience. “If some of them did not believe, does that make the faith of God ineffective?” (Many people are leaving God today because of the sins and unbelief of other Christians. Your answer will determine whether you allow satan to separate you from God because of the actions of other people) What is your answer? Will you let the unbelief of other Christians make the faith of God ineffective in you?
4. Romans 3:4-8. Write out what you think Paul’s reasoning is in these verses. What is the bottom line point he is trying to make?
5. Are the people that have the message of the day better than the people who don’t have the oracles of God? Romans 3:9 Why or why not?
6. In a personal way, what are the implications of really believing Romans 3:9-11.
7. Why do you think Paul gives so many details about our sinful condition in verses 11-18?
8. Why does the law say things to those under the law? What does that mean? Romans 3:19 What evangelistic principle is in this verse.
9. Write out your own meaning of Romans 3:20. How does this verse make you feel?
10. What do verses 21-23 mean?
11. Read Romans 3:23,24 in several different versions of the Bible. You can go to http://www.biblegateway.com/ and choose many different versions to compare verses. What does this verse mean to you and your relationship with God?
12. What does propitiation mean? Why do we need it? Why did God provide it through Jesus? Romans 3:25. Do you believe it? If you doubt it, how do you think God feels about your disbelief?
Has anyone ever doubted your love and sincerity? How did you feel?
13. Paul uses this phrase several times with emphasis. “His righteousness”. Why is he emphasizing those words to a Jewish population? How are the relevant to us?
14. Read Romans 3:27. Do you think this is a problem today? What is the cure for spiritual pride and boasting?
15. What is Paul’s conclusion about the following? Romans 3:28-31
Being justified ________________________________________________________________
Advantage of Jews_____________________________________________________________
Advantage of circumcision_______________________________________________________
The law of God________________________________________________________________
16. How has this chapter helped you in your own personal relationship with God and in understanding what He has done for you?