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Commentary on Romans
by Michael Bugg
Obtaining Shalom and Grace
Rom 5:1 So, since we have come to be considered righteous by God because of our trust, let us continue to have shalom with God through our Lord, Yeshua the Messiah.
Rom 5:2 Also through him and on the ground of our trust, we have gained access to this grace in which we stand; so let us boast about the hope of experiencing God's glory.
i. to be declared right, proper, or just in the eyes of the law, other people, etc.
ii. translates tzedek (צדק), a righteous man
i. “In addition to ‘peace,’ this word can be translated as ‘prosperity, well-being, health, completeness, safety.’” (Mounce, Dictionary 502, “Peace”)
1. “Completeness” is probably the primary meaning, the others following by implication”
ii. Gr. εἰρήνην, “In classical Gk. eirene describes a situation that results from the cessation of hostilities or war and can also refer to the state of the law and order that makes the fruits of prosperity possible.” (ibid., 503)
iii. “Peace can, ironically, prevail internally even when the violence of war is at its peak externally. Conversely, inner spiritual turmoil can be raging out of control when peaceful conditions prevail in the land. In other words, ‘peace’ is a state of being that lacks nothing and has no fear of being troubled in its tranquility . . .” (ibid.)
i. Mat 6:25, 27 - "Therefore, I tell you, don't worry about your life -- what you will eat or drink; or about your body -- what you will wear. Isn't life more than food and the body more than clothing? . . . Can any of you by worrying add a single hour to his life?”
ii. John 14:27 - "What I am leaving with you is shalom -- I am giving you my shalom. I don't give the way the world gives. Don't let yourselves be upset or frightened.”
iii. John 16:33 – “I have said these things to you so that, united with me, you may have shalom. In the world, you have tsuris. But be brave! I have conquered the world!”
iv. Mingled with the assurance that Yeshua gives us His shalom is the command to actively receive that shalom.
i. Boasting and rejoicing are good . . . if we boast in the Lord alone.
i. You don’t hope for something you already have (Rom 8:24)
ii. Tit 2:13 - . . . while continuing to expect the blessed fulfillment of our certain hope, which is the appearing of the Sh'khinah of our great God and the appearing of our Deliverer, Yeshua the Messiah.
Why Do Good People Suffer?
Rom 5:3 But not only that, let us also boast in our troubles; because we know that trouble produces endurance,
Rom 5:4 endurance produces character, and character produces hope;
Rom 5:5 and this hope does not let us down, because God's love for us has already been poured out in our hearts through the Ruach HaKodesh who has been given to us.
i. “troubles” = θλίψις (cf. Mat 24:21; Rev. 2:22, 7:14)
i. A new and different life from the one we had.
ii. The gifts of the Spirit—some overtly supernatural (prophecy, miracles, etc.), most not (teaching, helps, etc.).
At the Right Time
Rom 5:6 For while we were still helpless, at the right time, the Messiah died on behalf of ungodly people.
i. Hag 2:6-9 - For this is what ADONAI-Tzva'ot says: "It won't be long before one more time I will shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land; and I will shake all the nations, so that the treasures of all the nations will flow in; and I will fill this house with glory," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot. "The silver is mine, and the gold is mine," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot. "The glory of this new house will surpass that of the old," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot, "and in this place I will grant shalom," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot.'"
ii. Mal 3:1 - "Look! I am sending my messenger to clear the way before me; and the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to his temple. Yes, the messenger of the covenant, in whom you take such delight - look! Here he comes," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot.
i. A Tannaite authority of the house of Elijah [said], “For six thousand years the world will exist. For two thousand it will be desolate [of the Torah], two thousand years [will be the time of] Torah, and two thousand years will be the days of the Messiah, but on account of our numerous sins what has been lost [of those years, in which the Messiah should have come but has not come] has been lost. (b. Sanh. 97a-b)
Dying For His Enemies
Rom 5:7 Now it is a rare event when someone gives up his life even for the sake of somebody righteous, although possibly for a truly good person one might have the courage to die.
Rom 5:8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in that the Messiah died on our behalf while we were still sinners.
The Future Deliverance, The Present Reconciliation
Rom 5:9 Therefore, since we have now come to be considered righteous by means of his bloody sacrificial death, how much more will we be delivered through him from the anger of God's judgment!
Rom 5:10 For if we were reconciled with God through his Son's death when we were enemies, how much more will we be delivered by his life, now that we are reconciled!
Rom 5:11 And not only will we be delivered in the future, but we are boasting about God right now, because he has acted through our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, through whom we have already received that reconciliation.
i. Eschatology was very much on Sha’ul’s mind, and he taught others accordingly (cf. Acts 17:1ff, 2Th. 2:5).
The One Man
Rom 5:12 Here is how it works: it was through one individual that sin entered the world, and through sin, death; and in this way death passed through to the whole human race, inasmuch as everyone sinned.
Rom 5:13 Sin was indeed present in the world before Torah was given, but sin is not counted as such when there is no Torah.
Rom 5:14 Nevertheless death ruled from Adam until Moshe, even over those whose sinning was not exactly like Adam's violation of a direct command. In this, Adam prefigured the one who was to come.
i. In rabbinic literature, before the Fall Adam was conceived of as a near-divine being, “of an enormous size, extending . . . from heaven to earth [Gen. R. 8:1] . . . possessed of a glory derived from God Himself. . . The First Man was therefore altogether glorious; his fall was correspondingly disasterous.” (Davies, Paul 46)
ii. When his bride sinned, Adam joined with her in her sin, in effect trying to save her by breaking the Law.
i. Starts off with the appearance of a common man, but after His Resurrection, “wearing a robe down to his feet and a gold band around his chest. His head and hair were as white as snow-white wool, his eyes like a fiery flame, his feet like burnished brass refined in a furnace, and his voice like the sound of rushing waters” (Rev. 1:13-15)
ii. When His bride sinned, Messiah became a kinsman to her but did not sin Himself, saving her through obedience to the Torah and then giving up His life for her.
Rom 5:15 But the free gift is not like the offence. For if, because of one man's offence, many died, then how much more has God's grace, that is, the gracious gift of one man, Yeshua the Messiah, overflowed to many!
i. But because of the sin of the First Adam, that unity was broken as sin sowed discord among the sons of Adam.
ii. Gal 3:26-28 - For in union with the Messiah, you are all children of God through this trusting faithfulness; because as many of you as were immersed into the Messiah have clothed yourselves with the Messiah, in whom there is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor freeman, neither male nor female; for in union with the Messiah Yeshua, you are all one.
Rom 5:16 No, the free gift is not like what resulted from one man's sinning; for from one sinner came judgment that brought condemnation; but the free gift came after many offences and brought acquittal.
Rom 5:17 For if, because of the offence of one man, death ruled through that one man; how much more will those receiving the overflowing grace, that is, the gift of being considered righteous, rule in life through the one man Yeshua the Messiah!
i. Though many have conceived that Adam was made immortal, this was apparently not the case, else there would be no need for the Tree of Life.
ii. When Adam sinned, God took away access to the Tree of Life.
iii. This was a mercy: Adam had cut himself off from God by the shame of his sin. Immortality + sin and shame = hell
i. Barnes’ Notes on v. 16: “If, under the administration of a just and merciful Being, it has occurred, that by the offence of one, death hath exerted so wide a dominion; we have reason much more to expect under that administration, that they who are brought under his plan of saving mercy shall be brought under a dispensation of life.”
Rom 5:18 In other words, just as it was through one offence that all people came under condemnation, so also it is through one righteous act that all people come to be considered righteous.
Rom 5:19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man, many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the other man, many will be made righteous.
i. This theology is against Torah.
1. Deu 24:16 - "Fathers shall not be put to death for their sons, nor shall sons be put to death for their fathers; everyone shall be put to death for his own sin.”
2. Eze 18:20 - The person who sins is the one that will die - a son is not to bear his father's guilt with him, nor is the father to bear his son's guilt with him; but the righteousness of the righteous will be his own, and the wickedness of the wicked will be his own.
i. In Jewish thought, no son is greater than his father (cf. 4:1-3)
ii. Therefore, since our first father rebelled against God, it is a natural given that we will do so as well – we inherit his yetzer hara, his evil inclination.
iii. Nevertheless, we also have free will and a choice, so we are not condemned for Adam’s sin, but for the sins that we ourselves choose to commit.
Rom 5:20 And the Torah came into the picture so that the offence would proliferate; but where sin proliferated, grace proliferated even more.
i. A man who puts a “keep off the grass” sign in his yard will find more people walking through his grass than if he put up no sign at all.
ii. An ever-increasing number of laws in this country intended to regulate human life has not curbed the tendency towards lawlessness.
Rom 5:21 All this happened so that just as sin ruled by means of death, so also grace might rule through causing people to be considered righteous, so that they might have eternal life, through Yeshua the Messiah, our Lord.
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