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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Romans: Chapter 2)

2:1 {Wherefore} (\dio\). See 1:24,26 for this relative
conjunction, "because of which thing." {Without excuse}
(\anapologētos\). See on ¯1:21. {Whosoever thou art that
(\pas ho krinōn\). Literally, "every one that judgest,"
vocative case in apposition with \anthrōpe\. 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. \Krinō\ 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 \krinō\, to make plain the adverse judgment.
{For} (\gar\). Explanatory reason for the preceding statement.
The critic {practises} (\prasseis\, not single acts \poieō\, but
the habit \prassō\)
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 poiōn auta\). "And doest them
occasionally." {That thou shalt escape} (\su ekpheuxēi\).
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 \ekpheugō\ (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?} (\ē kataphroneis?\). Another
alternative, that of scorn of God's kindness (\chrēstotētos\,
2Co 6:6)
and forbearance (\anochēs\, old word, holding back
from \anechō\, only here in N.T.)
and longsuffering
(\makrothumias\, late word for which see 2Co 6:4,6).
\Kataphroneō\ is old verb to think down on (\kata, phroneō\) as
in Mt 6:24; 1Co 11:22. This upstart Jew actually thinks down on
God. And then "the riches" (\tou ploutou\) of all that comes from
God. {Leadeth thee to repentance} (\eis metanoian se agei\). The
very kindness (\to chrēston\, 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 tēn sklērotēta sou\). "According
to thy hardness (old word from \sklēros\, hard, stiff, only here
in N.T.)
will God's judgment be." {And impenitent heart} (\kai
ametanoēton kardian\)
. See \metanoian\ just before. "Thy
unreconstructed heart," "with no change in the attitude of thy
heart." {Treasurest up for thyself} (\thēsaurizeis seautōi\). See
for \thēsaurizō\ on Mt 6:19f.; Lu 12:21; 2Co 12:14. Dative case
\seautōi\ (for thyself) with a touch of irony (Vincent). {Wrath}
(\orgēn\). For such a Jew as already stated for the Gentile
(1:18). There is a revelation (\apokalupseōs\) 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 kriseōs\. 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 apodōsei\). 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--zētousin\). Dative plural of
the articular present active participle of \zēteō\ with \men\ on
the one hand. {Eternal life} (\zōēn aiōnion\). Accusative case
object of \apodōsei\ above.

2:8 {But unto them that are factious and obey not the truth but
obey unrighteousness}
(\tois de ex eritheias kai apeithousin tēi
alētheiāi peithomenois de adikiāi\)
. 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 \apodōsei\ like \zōēn ainōnion\ above, but are in the
nominative as if with \esontai\ (shall be) understood (anger and
wrath, both \orgē\ and \thumos\, tribulation and anguish, again a
pair \thlipsis kai stenochōria\ on which see 2Co 5:4; 12:10)

2:9 {Every soul of man} (\pasan psuchēn anthrōpou\). See 13:1
for this use of \psuchē\ for the individual. {Of the Jew first
and also of the Greek}
(\Ioudaiou te prōton kai Hellēnos\). 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} (\prosōpolēmpsia\). Milligan
(_Vocabulary_) considers this word (in N.T. only here, Col 3:25;
Eph 6:9)
and \prosōpolēmptēs\ (Ac 10:34) and \prosōpolēmpteō\
(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
(\prosōpon, lambanō\), to judge by the face or appearance.

2:12 {Have sinned} (\hēmarton\). Constative aorist active
indicative, "sinned," a timeless aorist. {Without law}
(\anomōs\). 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} (\anomōs 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 nomōi\). 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 poiētai\)
. 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 tōi theōi\). By God's side,
as God looks at it. {Shall be justified} (\dikaiōthēsontai\).
Future passive indicative of \dikaioō\, to declare righteous, to
set right. "Shall be declared righteous." Like Jas 1:22-25.

2:14 {That have no law} (\ta mē nomon echonta\). Better, "that
have not the law" (the Mosaic law). {By nature} (\phusei\).
Instrumental case of \phusis\, old word from \phuō\, 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 autōn\)
. Verbal adjective of \graphō\, 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}
(\sunmarturousēs autōn tēs
. On conscience (\suneidēsis\) see on ¯1Co 8:7;
10:25f.; 2Co 1:12. Genitive absolute here with present active
participle \sunmarturousēs\ as in 9:1. The word \suneidēsis\
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
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 allēlōn tōn logismōn katēgorountōn ē
kai apologoumenōn\)
. 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} (\eponomazēi\). Present passive
indicative in condition of first class of \eponomazō\, 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
(\epanapauēi nomōi\). 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 (\nomōi\). It is the picture of
blind and mechanical reliance on the Mosaic law. {Gloriest in
(\kauchāsai en theōi\). _Koinē_ vernacular form for
\kauchāi\ (\kauchaesai, kauchāsai\) of \kauchaomai\ as in verse
23; 1Co 4:7 and \katakauchāsai\ 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 then 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
(\katēchoumenos ek tou nomou\). Present passive participle
of \katēcheō\, 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} (\hodēgon tuphlōn\). Accusative
\hodēgon\ in predicate with \einai\ to agree with \seauton\,
accusative of general reference with infinitive \einai\ in
indirect discourse after \pepoithas\. Late word (Polybius,
from \hodos\, way, and \hēgeomai\, to lead, one who
leads the way. \Tuphlōn\ 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} (\phōs\). "A light for those
in darkness" (\tōn 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} (\paideutēn aphronōn\). Old
word (from \paideuō\) for instructor, in Plato, and probably so
here, though corrector or chastiser in Heb 12:9 (the only N.T.
. See Lu 23:16. Late inscriptions give it as
instructor (Preisigke). \Aphronōn\ is a hard word for Gentiles,
but it is the Jewish standpoint that Paul gives. Each termed the
other "dogs." {Of babes} (\nēpiōn\). Novitiates or proselytes to
Judaism just as in Ga 4:1. Paul used it of those not of legal
age. {The form} (\tēn morphōsin\). Rare word only in Theophrastus
and Paul (here and 2Ti 3:5). Pallis regards it as a Stoical
term for education. Lightfoot considers the \morphōsis\ as "the
rough-sketch, the pencilling of the \morphē\," 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 didaskōn
. 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}
(\mē kleptein\). Infinitive with \mē\ in indirect command
(indirect discourse) after \kerussōn\. {Dost thou steal?}
(\klepteis?\). The preaching (\kerussōn\) was fine, but the
practice? A home-thrust. {Should not commit adultery} (\mē
. Infinitive in direct command again after \legōn\.
"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 (\eidōla\, 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 \sulaō\, 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 tēs parabaseōs
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 \agnoēma\, ignorance, \anomia\, violation
of law, \hamartia\, missing the mark, \hettēma\, falling short,
\parabasis\, passing over the line, \parakoē\, disobedience to a
voice, \paranomia\, putting the law aside, \paraptōma\, falling
down, \plēmmeleia\, 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 \prassō\, a verb meaning to do as a habit. {Is
become uncircumcision}
(\akrobustia gegonen\). The Jew is then
like the Gentile, with no privilege at all. Circumcision was
simply the seal of the covenant relation of Israel with God.

2:26 {Keep} (\phulassēi\). 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 \teleō\,
to finish, continually fulfilling to the end (as would be
. {Judge thee} (\krinei--se\). Unusual position of \se\
(thee) so far from the verb \krinei\. {With the letter and
(\dia grammatos kai peritomēs\). \Dia\ means here
accompanied by, with the advantage of.

2:28 {Which is one outwardly} (\ho en tōi phanerōi\). \Ioudaios\
(Jew) has to be repeated (ellipse) with the article, "the in the
open Jew" (circumcision, phylacteries, tithes, etc.). Likewise
repeat \peritomē\ (circumcision).

2:29 {Who is one inwardly} (\ho en tōi kruptōi\). Repeat
\Ioudaios\ (Jew) here also, "the in the inward part Jew"
(circumcision of the heart \peritomē 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

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Word Pictures in the New Testament
(Romans: Chapter 2)