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  • ROBERTSON'S NT WORD STUDIES
    & BIBLE COMMENTARY - ROMANS 2

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    2:1 {Wherefore} (dio). See #1:24,26 for this relative conjunction, "because of which thing." {Without excuse} (anapologˆtos). See on ¯1:21. {Whosoever thou art that judgest} (pas ho krinwn). Literally, "every one that judgest," vocative case in apposition with anqrwpe. Paul begins his discussion of the failure of the Jew to attain to the God-kind of righteousness (#2:1-3:20) with a general statement applicable to all as he did (#1:18) in the discussion of the failure of the Gentiles (Lightfoot). The Gentile is readily condemned by the Jew when he sins and equally so is the Jew condemned by the Gentile in like case. krinw does not of itself mean to condemn, but to pick out, separate, approve, determine, pronounce judgment, condemn (if proper). {Another} (ton heteron). Literally, "the other man." The notion of two in the word, one criticizing the other. {Thou condemnest thyself} (seauton katakrineis). Note kata here with krinw, to make plain the adverse judgment. {For} (gar). Explanatory reason for the preceding statement. The critic {practises} (prasseis, not single acts poiew, but the habit prassw) the same things that he condemns.

    2:2 {Judgment} (krima). Decision rendered whether good or bad. {According to} (kata with accusative). As the rule of measure. Cf. #Joh 7:24.

    2:3 {And doest the same} (kai poiwn auta). "And doest them occasionally." {That thou shalt escape} (su ekfeuxei). Emphasis on su, "thou conceited Jew expecting to escape God's krima because thou art a Jew." Cf. #Mt 3:8f. Paul justifies the bitter words of the Baptist to the Pharisees and Sadducees. The future middle of the old verb ekfeugw (cf. #1Th 5:3). The Jew posed as immune to the ordinary laws of ethics because a Jew. Alas, some Christians affect the same immunity.

    2:4 {Or despiseth thou?} (e katafroneis?). Another alternative, that of scorn of God's kindness (chrˆstotˆtos, #2Co 6:6) and forbearance (anochˆs, old word, holding back from anecw, only here in N.T.) and longsuffering (makrothumias, late word for which see #2Co 6:4,6). katafronew is old verb to think down on (kata, fronew) as in #Mt 6:24; 1Co 11:22. this upstart Jew actually thinks down on God. And qen "the riches" (tou ploutou) of all that comes from God. {Leadeth thee to repentance} (eis metanoian se agei). The very kindness (to chrˆston, the kindly quality) of God is trying to lead (conative present agei) thee to a right-about face, a change of mind and attitude (metanoian) instead of a complacent self-satisfaction and pride of race and privilege.

    2:5 {After thy hardness} (kata tˆn sklˆrotˆta sou). "According to thy hardness (old word from skleros, hard, stiff, only here in N.T.) will God's judgment be." {And unrepentant heart} (kai ametanoˆton kardian). See metanoian just before. "Thy unreconstructed heart,"with no change in the attitude of thy heart." {Treasurest up for thyself} (thˆsaurizeis seautwi). See for qesaurizw on #Mt 6:19f.; Lu 12:21; 2Co 12:14. Dative case seautwi (for thyself) with a touch of irony (Vincent). {Wrath} (orgen). For such a Jew as already stated for the Gentile (#1:18). There is a revelation (apokalupse"s) of God's wrath for both in the day of wrath and righteous judgment (dikaiokrisias, a late compound word, in LXX, two examples in the Oxyrhynchus papyri, only here in N.T.). See #2Th 1:5 for dikaias krisews. Paul looks to the judgment day as certain (cf. #2Co 5:10-12), the day of the Lord (#2Co 1:14).

    2:6 {Who will render} (hos apodwsei). Paul quotes #Pr 24:12 as in #2Ti 4:14. See also #Mt 16:27; Re 22:12. The rendering will be in accord with the facts.

    2:7 {To them that seek} (tois men--zˆtousin). Dative plural of the articular present active participle of zetew with men on the one hand. {Eternal life} (zwen aiwnion). Accusative case object of apod"sei above.

    2:8 {But unto them that are factious and obey not the truth but obey unrighteousness} (tois de ex eriqeias kai apeiqousin tei aleqeiai peiqomenois de adikiai). The other side with de and the articular present participles in the dative again, only with ex eritheias, there is no participle ousin. But the construction changes and the substantives that follow are not the object of apod"sei like zwen ain"nion above, but are in the nominative as if with esontai (shall be) understood (anger and wrath, both orge and qumos, tribulation and anguish, again a pair qliyis kai stenocwria on which see #2Co 5:4; 12:10).

    2:9 {Every soul of man} (pasan yucen anqrwpou). See #13:1 for this use of yuce for the individual. {Of the Jew first and also of the Greek} (ioudaiou te prwton kai hellenos). See on ¯1:16. First not only in penalty as here, but in privilege also as in #2:11; 1:16.

    2:11 {Respect of persons} (proswpolemyia). Milligan (_Vocabulary_) considers this word (in N.T. only here, #Col 3:25; Eph 6:9) and proswpolemptes (#Ac 10:34) and proswpolemptew (#Jas 2:9) the earliest definitely known Christian words, not in LXX or non-Christian writings. See on ¯Ac 10:34 for the formation in imitation of the Hebrew to take note of the face (pros"pon, lambanw), to judge by the face or appearance.

    2:12 {Have sinned} (hemarton). Constative aorist active indicative, "sinned," a timeless aorist. {Without law} (anom"s). Old adverb "contrary to law,"unjustly," but here in ignorance of the Mosaic law (or of any law). Nowhere else in N.T. {Shall also perish without law} (anomws kai apolountai). Future middle indicative of apollumi, to destroy. this is a very important statement. The heathen who Sin are lost, because they do not keep the law which they have, not because they do not have the Mosaic law or Christianity. {Under law} (en nom"i). In the sphere of the Mosaic law. {By the law} (dia nomou). The Jew has to stand or fall by the Mosaic law.

    2:13 {Not the hearers--but the doers} (ou gar hoi akroatai--all' hoi poiˆtai). The law was read in the synagogue, but there was no actual virtue in listening. The virtue is in doing. See a like contrast by James between "hearers" and "doers" of the gospel (#Jas 1:22-25). {Before God} (para twi qewi). By God's side, as God looks at it. {Shall be justified} (dikaiwqesontai). Future passive indicative of dikaiow, to declare righteous, to set right. "Shall be declared righteous." Like #Jas 1:22-25.

    2:14 {That have no law} (ta mˆ nomon econta). Better, "that have not the law" (the Mosaic law). {By nature} (fusei). Instrumental case of fusis, old word from fuw, to beget. The Gentiles are without the Mosaic law, but not without some knowledge of God in conscience and when they do right "they are a law to themselves" (heautois eisin nomos). this is an obvious reply to the Jewish critic.

    2:15 {In that they} (hoitines). "The very ones who," qualitative relative. {Written in their hearts} (grapton en tais kardiais autwn). Verbal adjective of grafw, to write. When their conduct corresponds on any point with the Mosaic law they practise the unwritten law in their hearts. {Their conscience bearing witness therewith} (sunmarturouses autwn tes suneidesews). On conscience (suneidesis) see on ¯1Co 8:7; 10:25f.; 2Co 1:12. Genitive absolute here with present active participle sunmarturousˆs as in #9:1. The word suneidesis means co-knowledge by the side of the original consciousness of the act. this second knowledge is personified as confronting the first (Sanday and Headlam). The Stoics used the word a great deal and Paul has it twenty times. It is not in the O.T., but first in this sense in Wisdom 17:10. All men have this faculty of passing judgment on their actions. It can be over-scrupulous (#1Co 10:25) or "seared" by abuse (#1Ti 4:12). It acts according to the light it has. {Their thoughts one with another accusing or also excusing them} (metaxu allˆl"n t"n logism"n katˆgorount"n ˆ kai apologoumen"n). Genitive absolute again showing the alternative action of the conscience, now accusing, now excusing. Paul does not say that a heathen's conscience always commends everything that he thinks, says, or does. In order for one to be set right with God by his own life he must always act in accord with his conscience and never have its disapproval. That, of course, is impossible else Christ died for naught (#Ga 2:21). Jesus alone lived a sinless life. For one to be saved without Christ he must also live a sinless life.

    2:16 {According to my gospel} (kata to euaggelion mou). What Paul preaches (#1Co 15:1) and which is the true gospel

    2:17 {Bearest the name} (eponomazˆi). Present passive indicative in condition of first class of eponomaz", old word, to put a name upon (epi), only here in N.T. "Thou art surnamed Jew" (Lightfoot). Jew as opposed to Greek denoted nationality while Hebrew accented the idea of language. {Restest upon the law} (epanapauei nomwi). Late and rare double compound, in LXX and once in the Didache. In N.T. only here and #Lu 10:6 which see. It means to lean upon, to refresh oneself back upon anything, here with locative case (nom"i). It is the picture of blind and mechanical reliance on the Mosaic law. {Gloriest in God} (kaucasai en qewi). _Koin‚_ vernacular form for kauchai (kauchaesai, kaucasai) of kaucaomai as in verse #23; 1Co 4:7 and katakauchasai in #Ro 11:18. The Jew gloried in God as a national asset and private prerogative (#2Co 10:15; Ga 6:13). {Approvest the things that are excellent} (dokimazeis ta diapheronta). Originally, "Thou testest the things that differ," and qen as a result comes the approval for the excellent things. As in #Php 1:10 it is difficult to tell which stage of the process Paul has in mind. {Instructed out of the law} (katˆchoumenos ek tou nomou). Present passive participle of katecew, a rare verb to instruct, though occurring in the papyri for legal instruction. See on ¯Lu 1:4; 1Co 14:19. The Jew's "ethical discernment was the fruit of catechetical and synagogical instruction in the Old Testament" (Shedd).

    2:19 {A guide of the blind} (hodegon tuflwn). Accusative hodˆgon in predicate with einai to agree with seauton, accusative of general reference with infinitive einai in indirect discourse after pepoithas. Late word (Polybius, Plutarch) from hodos, way, and hegeomai, to lead, one who leads the way. Tuphl"n is objective genitive plural. The Jews were meant by God to be guides for the Gentiles, for salvation is of the Jews (#Joh 4:22). {A light} (fws). "A light for those in darkness" (t"n en skotei, objective genitive again). But this intention of God about the Jews had resulted in conceited arrogance on their part.

    2:20 {A corrector of the foolish} (paideutˆn aphron"n). Old word (from paideuw) for instructor, in Plato, and probably so here, though corrector or chastiser in #Heb 12:9 (the only N.T. instances). See #Lu 23:16. Late inscriptions give it as instructor (Preisigke). Aphron"n is a hard word for Gentiles, but it is the Jewish standpoint that Paul gives. Each termed the other "dogs." {Of babes} (nepiwn). Novitiates or convert to Judaism just as in #Ga 4:1. Paul used it of those not of legal age. {The form} (tˆn morfwsin). Rare word only in Theophrastus and Paul (here and #2Ti 3:5). Pallis regards it as a Stoical term for education. Lightfoot considers the morph"sis as "the rough-sketch, the pencilling of the morfe," the outline or framework, and in #2Ti 3:5 "the outline without the substance." this is Paul's picture of the Jew as he sees himself drawn with consummate skill and subtle irony.

    2:21 {Thou therefore that teachest another} (ho oun didask"n heteron). Paul suddenly breaks off (anacoluthon) the long sentence that began in verse #17 and starts over again with a phrase that gathers it all up in small compass (teachest) and drives it home (therefore) on the Jew (thyself). {Not to steal} (me kleptein). Infinitive with me in indirect command (indirect discourse) after keruss"n. {Dost thou steal?} (klepteis?). The preaching (kerusswn) was fine, but the practice? A home-thrust. {Should not commit adultery} (mˆ moicheuein). Infinitive in direct command again after legwn. "The Talmud charges the crime of adultery upon the three most illustrious Rabbins" (Vincent).

    2:22 {That abhorrest} (ho bdelussomenos). Old word to make foul, to stink, to have abhorrence for. In LXX, in N.T. only here and #Re 21:8. The very word used by Jesus to express their horror of idols (eid"la, see on ¯Ac 7:41; 1Co 12:2). See #Mt 24:15 for "abomination." {Dost thou rob temples?} (hierosuleis?). Old verb from hierosulos (#Ac 19:37) and that from hieron, temple, and sulaw, to rob. The town clerk (#Ac 19:37) said that these Jews (Paul and his companions) were "not robbers of temples," proof that the charge was sometimes made against Jews, though expressly forbidden the Jews (Josephus, _Ant_. IV. 8, 10). Paul refers to the crime of robbing idol temples in spite of the defilement of contact with idolatry.

    2:23 {Through thy transgression of the law} (dia tes parabasews tou nomou). Old word for stepping across a line. Trench calls attention to "the mournfully numerous group of words" for the varieties of Sin like agnoema, ignorance, anomia, violation of law, hamartia, missing the mark, hettˆma, falling short, parabasis, passing over the line, parakoˆ, disobedience to a voice, paranomia, putting the law aside, parapt"ma, falling down, plˆmmeleia, discord.

    2:24 {Because of you} (di' humas). Free quotation from the LXX of #Isa 52:5. The Jews were jealous for the Name of God and would not pronounce the Tetragrammaton and yet acted so that the Gentiles blasphemed that Name.

    2:25 {If thou be a doer of the law} (ean nomon prasseis). Condition of third class and the present (continued action) subjunctive of prassw, a verb meaning to do as a habit. {Is become uncircumcision} (akrobustia gegonen). The Jew is qen like the Gentile, with no privilege at all. Circumcision was simply the seal of the covenant relation of Israel with God.

    2:26 {Keep} (fulassei). Present subjunctive with ean, condition of third class, mere supposition like that in verse #25, "keep on keeping" perfectly, Paul means. {For} (eis). As often in N.T.

    2:27 {If it fulfill the law} (ton nomon telousa). Present active participle (conditional use of the participle) of tele", to finish, continually fulfilling to the end (as would be necessary). {Judge thee} (krinei--se). Unusual position of se (thee) so far from the verb krinei. {With the letter and circumcision} (dia grammatos kai peritomes). dia means here accompanied by, with the advantage of.

    2:28 {Which is one outwardly} (ho en twi fanerwi). ioudaios (Jew) has to be repeated (ellipse) with the article, "the in the open Jew" (circumcision, phylacteries, tithes, etc.). Likewise repeat peritomˆ (circumcision).

    2:29 {Who is one inwardly} (ho en twi kruptwi). Repeat ioudaios (Jew) here also, "the in the inward part Jew" (circumcision of the heart peritomˆ kardias and not a mere surgical operation as in #Col 2:11, in the spirit en pneumati, with which compare #2Co 3:3,6). this inward or inside Jew who lives up to his covenant relation with God is the high standard that Paul puts before the merely professional Jew described above. {Whose praise} (hou ho epainos). The antecedent of the relative hou is ioudaios (Jew). Probably (Gifford) a reference to the etymology of Judah (praise) as seen in #Ga 49:8.

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