The Just Judgment of God
(1) Therefore, you have no excuse (right) to judge others, because at whatever point you judge another person, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things they do. (2) Now we know that God’s judgment against those who practice such things is founded in truth (on what is right).
(3) So when you—a mere human—pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you actually think you will escape the just judgment of God? (4) Or do you show contempt for the abundance of God’s kindness, forbearance, and patience, not realizing that the purpose of God’s kindness is to lead you to repentance? (5) But because of your stubborn and unrepentant heart, you are storing up (accumulating) holy wrath against yourself on the day of wrath, when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed.
The Day of God’s Judgment
(6) On the day of God’s righteous judgment, he will repay each person according to how they have lived on earth. (7) God will give eternal life to those who have been persistent in doing good (what is right), seeking glory (righteous achievements), honor (integrity), and immortality (an indestructible life). (8) But those who are self-seeking (full of pride) and who reject the truth and follow evil, they will receive God’s just wrath and holy anger. (9) There will be trouble (tribulation) and distress for every human being who does evil—first for the Jew and then for the non-Jew. (10) But everyone who does good (what is right) on earth will receive glory, honor, and peace—first for the Jew and then for the non-Jew. (11) For God does not show favoritism between people.
Jews, Non-Jews, and the Law of Moses
(12) All who sin without the law of Moses (non-Jews) will also perish (be destroyed) apart from the law, and all who sin under the law of Moses (Jews) will be judged by the law. (13) For it is not those who simply listen to the law who are righteous before God, but it is those who obey the law who will be made right before God (declared righteous, justified). (14) Indeed, when non-Jews—who do not have the law of Moses—do by nature (probably referring to the internal conscience or to non-Jewish Christians) what the law requires, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the written law. (15) They demonstrate that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, while their consciences also tell them what is right and wrong, because their bad thoughts sometimes accuse them, and at other times their good thoughts defend them. (16) As the gospel message tells us, this will take place on that day when God judges the inner secrets of every person’s heart through Jesus Christ.
(17) Now you, if you are proud to call yourself a Jew; if you rely on the law of Moses and boast in God; (18) if you know God’s will and agree that it is superior because you are taught by the law; (19) if you are confident that you are a guide to the spiritually blind, a light to those who live in spiritual darkness, (20) a teacher of the foolish, an instructor of little children, because the law contains knowledge and truth—(21) you Jews, then, who teach others, why don’t you teach yourselves? You who preach against stealing, why do you steal? (22) You speak against those who commit adultery, why do you commit adultery? You who hate idols, why do you steal them from pagan temples so you can sell them? (23) You who boast in the law of Moses, why do you dishonor God by not obeying it? (24) As it is written in Isaiah 52:5, “The name of God is blasphemed among the nations because of you.”
The True Jews
(25) Circumcision has value if you Jews obey the law of Moses, but if you do not obey the law, you have become as though you had never been circumcised. (26) So then, if uncircumcised non-Jews obey the requirements of the law of Moses, will they not be regarded as being circumcised? (27) The non-Jew who is not circumcised physically and yet obeys the law will condemn a Jew who, even though he has the written code and circumcision, is a lawbreaker.
(28) For no one is a Jew who is one only in outward appearance, neither is circumcision merely an outward and physical thing. (29) No, a true Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is circumcision of the heart performed by the Holy Spirit, not by the written law. Such a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God.