Romans 2:1-4 / To Judge or Not to Judge (Sermon – Notes and Audio)

Posted on May 25, 2013


This is the tenth in a series of verse-by-verse expositions of the book of Romans. This message was delivered at Hillcrest Baptist Church on the morning of May 19, 2013. This message deals with the issue of judgment. This contains an audio recording of my message, along with my sermon notes and a study outline. Please note that the sermon notes are not a full transcript.

AUDIO – Listen Now:


Rom 2_1-4 outline


Romans 2:1-4


Paul had just finished a scathing rebuke of the unbelieving gentiles.

At this point, he can rightfully anticipate the hearty agreement of the legalistic, unbelieving Jews.

Jews of that day regarded themselves as superior to Gentiles because they (the Jews) possessed the Mosaic Law.

According to Jews of that day, Gentiles were ignorant of God’s revelation and immoral in their lifestyles.

What they were forgetting, is that they were just as guilty, even if they weren’t doing the exact things that Paul had listed.

The tragedy is that because they had the Mosaic law, they had more knowledge than the immoral pagan.

Thus, they had greater accountability.

Hebrews 10:26-29

If they had the knowledge to condemn others, then they condemn themselves, because they show that they have the knowledge to evaluate their own condition.

Therefore, their lack of faith was inexcusable, because the Oracles of God had been committed to them.

Romans 3:2

Their lack of faith made their adherence to the law a mere illusion of righteousness.

They weren’t pleasing God simply by their strict adherence to the law.

Hebrews 11:6

Ephesians 2:8-9


In their condemnation of others they have excused and overlooked their own sins.

*Their sins may have been different, they may not seem as bad, but the end result is the same.

One solitary sin, in your entire life, would be sufficient to separate you from a Holy and Righteous God.

We can rest assured that none of them were without sin.

Romans 3:23

Paul points out the very truth that they use against the gentiles.

Wicked behavior invites God’s judgment.

Paul goes on to point out that they are also sinners, and will not escape the judgment.

This brings us to the issue of judging.

Matthew 7:1-2

People today love to toss around this verse, yet most fail to understand what it really means.

Many people use it as a shield against criticism. Any time their sin is pointed out, they cite this verse and say don’t judge me.

As the context reveals, this does not prohibit all types of judging

Matthew 7:16

How will we know someone by their works, unless we apply some judgment?

In fact, there is a righteous kind of judgment we are supposed to exercise with careful discernment.

John 7:24

It is absolutely necessary to apply judgment, in order to discern “dogs” and “swine.”

Matthew 7:6

These people were practicing a very hypocritical judgment.

These are just like those who Jesus is speaking of in Matthew 7:3-4

Just because some people will judge in a hypocritical way, doesn’t negate the need for righteous judgment.

We have a duty to acknowledge sin.

Ezekiel 33:8-9

However, we must first recognize that we are also sinners.

When we recognize that we are deserving of the same fate, we will come humbly to the lost.

We should never take on a pretentious, arrogant, holier-than-thou attitude.

Our approach should be out of genuine love, with the goal of bringing people to faith and repentance.

We should never forget that the goodness of God leads you to repentance.

It is not God’s will that any should perish.

2 Peter 3:9

Our will and attitude should mirror God’s.

That same goodness that lead you to repentance, can lead anyone to repentance.

Never forget that no one is beyond God’s saving grace.

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