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Romans 2:2-4


Darlene

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Heavenly Father,

 

"I sing because I'm happy. I sing because I'm free. His eye is upon the sparrow, and He watches over me..."

 

That's the song You've birthed in my heart this morning. I think it's kinda sweet how You often lay a song on my heart and it's the banner that bows over me for the day.

 

I've been sitting here this morning, kinda surprised at the perfection that You weave things together. Your weaving many times, is very quiet and gentle...it often takes time for You to pull the threads You have woven tighter, until they finally become a beautiful tapestry of fabric.

 

Last night, I had to work the concession stand for my youngest daughter's school. She's a cheerleader and they had a home basketball game. In 22 years, I've always escaped having to work concession stands...I'm NOT a concession stand type of mom. Through 2 boys and 1 girl who did a variety of sports and activities, I never, ever, ever, had to work a concession stand. In fact, this school didn't even ASK for me to volunteer...they assigned me lol. They didn't ask my opinion, they didn't ask if I might be interested, they didn't ask if I had time, they just informed me that I had to do it. A very small part of me thought "Well, helloooooooooooo? May I don't wanna do this? lol". But I did because it is for my youngest daughter and has absolutely nothing to do with me.

 

So Father, there I walk in, with my usual and customary style, to meet another woman who had been 'assigned' too.

 

Last night Father, I 'didn't get it'. This morning Father, through Your precious Holy Spirit, Who opened my spiritual eyes instead of my blinded human eyes, I now 'get it'.

 

Last night Father, as she talked a mile a minute, questioning me, wanting to know who I was and what I did (or had done in the past as far as careers, etc), I started to explain this 'food thang' You've gifted me with...this passion, this talent, this ability, whatever You want to call it, with food. One of the springboards that lead me to moving more rural was a desire to be able to legally raise food from its foundation...whether it be livestock or gardens. I got in so much trouble in Miami for the chickens I had in my la di da back yard, so You moved me Father, here.

 

I told her how I grind my own grains into flour, I flake my own oatmeal...I raise heirloom produce in my garden, I'm in the process of collecting and raising various livestock so that I can actually be more self sufficient. All these years I've spent at my site, learning for me, teaching others for them. I've had a sense for a while that it would start to transcend the confines of the net, and in little ways that has begun.

 

I don't remember this woman's name Father...I'm terrible with names, but I remember exactly what she looks like. While I am normally a very chatty and conversational type of person, I could barely get a word in edge wise, other than to share the things that I do for my own family. As she monopolized the conversation, I kinda step back and began to listen to the destiny You have given her in her life...

 

She was a missionary Father. When her son was 4 months old, her husband, the father, died. For 15 years, she's raised her son herself, feeling the immense responsibility of that child. You brought her out from the mission field and back into the corporate world where she sells real estate. The housing market has tanked so she is struggling, hanging onto You in complete faith in her Holy Father, keeping her son in a private Christian school because her heart belongs to Jesus.

 

She asked me if she could buy my flours. She asked me if she could buy the vegetables that I raise. She basically asked if she could buy any and all of the things that I do with food...of course at a reasonable price because she's poor.

 

Last night I couldn't escape the tiny thought of feeling like a deer in headlights. I was thinking, "oh geez, nonononono...I have no desire to sell my things anymore...I gave that up when I left Miami and I have just not felt You leading me back in that direction. I have so much on my plate, I have so many things I need to do around here, and struggle with myself. I don't know if I want to enter into a commitment like that...blahblahblahblahblah"...

 

And so, this morning Father, I woke up with that song playing over and over in my eye. "His eye is on the sparrow...and He watches over me..."

 

As I write this prayer out, it begins to dawn on me, why You picked this particular song today. Your eye truly is on that sparrow...that sparrow right now, is that widowed, retired missionary.

 

She and 2 friends contracted Lymes disease last year. Her 2 friends died from it, yet You preserved her life. She now has all kinds of health issues, and her choices in food play a part.

 

*I* have a couple thousand pounds of grain that was purchased and given to me by a Christian man almost a year ago. When he purchased this grain, I had told him then that this grain would be used however God wanted to use it. It's seperate from my own grain stash...it belongs to God and always has, and this morning I remembered Your grain, and know with a knowing, that I am to share it with her. I am to 'tithe' from my garden, to her. It is Scriptural to take care of the widows Father, so I will share from the overflowing bounty You have not only blessed me with, but entrusted me with.

 

As You have unfolded Your plan in my heart...this 'chance' meeting that I did not want to attend, I am struck by the softness, the gentleness, the tenderness, with which You many times bring Your perfect will into order.

 

Bless Your grain Father, that sits in buckets in that storage room. Multiply it, enrich it, and may all who take a bite from its bounty, be fed not only physically, but spiritually.

 

It is such an honor to be dispatched to do Your work. It never ceases to amaze me how it feels to be handling 'holy things'. It rises a reverence, a respect, and humility inside me.

 

You are absolutely, unbelieveably and incredibly beautiful Father.

 

I am so in awe.

 

In Jesus Name I pray,

 

 

 

2. And we know that the judgment of God is according to truth against them that practice such things.

 

3. And dost thou reckon this, O man, judging them that practice such things, and thyself doing the same that thou shalt escape the judgment of God?

 

4. Or dost thou even despise the riches of His goodness and forbearance and long-suffering, not knowing that the goodness of God is meant to lead thee to repentance?

 

Verse 2 describes the first principle of God's judgment...it is "according to truth". Since man is naturally blind to his own state and sins, it is by the power of His Holy Spirit that man is convinced and understand God's justice in dealing with him and is brought out in the third verse.

 

Watchman Nee comments on verse 2 that the word "judgment" is referring to God's eternal judgment, which will be carried

out mainly at the great white throne, as revealed in Rev. 20:11-15.

 

Nee further comments on the word "truth" used in verse 2: "Truth here...denotes the reality revealed through the creation and through the Bible concerning God, the universe, man, the relationship between man and God, and it may be the terms of God's judgment upon man, as indicated in verses 6-15. According to these terms God will execute His judgment righteously."

 

The rvbv writes, "Godet (though seeking to confine this passage to the Jews) strikingly renders it: "Dost thou reason that thou would escape, - thou? A being by thyself? A privileged person?" (the pronoun "thou" is emphatic in the Greek, indicating a fond conceit about onself.) And he adds, "The Greek word here used (logidzomai - to reason) well describes the false calculations whereby the Jews persuaded themselves that they would escape the judgment wherewith God would visit the Gentiles."

 

But Paul does not begin with the Jews as a class until verse 17. Here in the first part of the chapter he is seeking to arouse all men from that sense of security arising from self-love and self-flattery. We must apply these searching sentences to all "respectable" persons, to all those who, being themselves impenitent, yet "judge" others.

 

God sees the facts, nay, the motives behind the facts, of the life of every creature. Of course, this whole second chapter and the first part of the thrid, is meant by God, whose name is Love, to drive us out of our false notions of Himself and His judicial procedure, into the arms of our Redeemer, Christ; who has born wrath, the wrath of God, as our Substitute. but whether you are brought to flee to Christ or not, you must face the facts: God is a God of judgment, and a God of truth. See how He "spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up."

 

Now, in the next two verses (3 and 4), we see God dealing with the accursed folly of the deceitful heart of man, who dreams that by merely judging others (though he practices the same things), he shall escape God's judgment. Some one says, "We hate our own faults when we see them in others." But this state goes beyond even that, for it puts God right off His throne, and makes Him connive with a guilty sinner, just because, forsooth, this sinner discerns clearly and decries loudly the sins of others, - while committing the same himself.

 

Furthermore, such a "judge" of others becomes, in his self-confident importance, blind to God's constant mercy toward himself - not feeling the need of it; and in his self-righteous blindness knows not that the "goodness" of God is meant to lead him to personal repentance instead of to judgment of his fellows.

 

Note the degree or stages, also, of God's kindness during the earth-life of such a man: First, it is God's "goodness" in daily preserving him, providing for him, and protecting him. Second, Divine goodness being despised by him, God's "forebearance" is exercised, - God does not smite instantly the proud ingrate, but goes on in goodness toward him, withholding wrath even at times when disease, danger, or death threaten all about him. Third, all God's goodness and forbearance being despised, God's "long-suffering" keeps waiting, even over vessels of wrath" (see 9:22).

 

 

Heavenly Father,

 

It seems lately, when I get done writing out the things that I've read or learned in this study, that I feel very quiet. It's as if I've just spiritually eaten something very rich, that takes time to absorb. So Holy Father, as You 'feed' each of us from Your Holy Word, I pray that Your Spirit would press through the sieves of our heart, Your Truth found herein.

 

Flow over these words Holy Spirit and do the work that the Father has sent You to do in each of our hearts.

 

In Jesus Holy Name I pray,

 

 

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I went and checked these same scriptures out in the NLT, helped me 'hear' them a bit better.

 

Rom 2:2 And we know that God, in his justice, will punish anyone who does such things.

 

Rom 2:3 Do you think that God will judge and condemn others for doing them and not judge you when you do them, too?

 

Rom 2:4 Don't you realize how kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Or don't you care? Can't you see how kind he has been in giving you time to turn from your sin?

 

Thank you Lord for Your mercies towards me, forgive me when I fall short in mercy towards others. Amen

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