Chapter # 2 Paragraph # 2 Study # 4
February 22, 2005
Lincolnton, N.C.

<102> Thesis: The final purpose of divine revelation is not to give us a way to exalt ourselves above others; it is, rather, to fill our lives with the joy of life. Introduction: In our studies over the last three weeks, we have looked into Paul's opening statement as he turned his attention specifically to those whose "self-concept" was filled with issues of superiority over others. In the light of his claim that men have an irresistible destiny with the judgment of the Judge of All the Earth, he turned his attention to those who felt the most comfortable in light of that destiny. Comfort in the light of that destiny is no small matter, and those who have it also have a desperate need to be sure that their comfort has a legitimate foundation. Paul claimed that those who "called themselves Jews" had a three-fold foundation: they fell back upon their physical heritage as the children of "Judah"; they fell back upon their possession of a divine revelation; and they fell back upon their solid conviction that they had a connection to the Most High God. Their "problem", as Paul is going to reveal it, was that these things were all deceptions generated by the Law of Sin in their members as it took a thing that was fundamentally true and twisted it by the insertion of a false motive so that it was no longer true. Part of the revelation of the twistedness has to do with the superiority complex that is inherent in the "Jewish" mindset. A person who has a genuine foundation for comfort in the face of judgment will also have a "humility complex". Anyone with a "superiority complex" is only revealing how far removed from God the heart of that person really is. Thus, Paul begins to reveal the superiority complex that is involved as we move into Romans 2:18.