“… if you call yourself a Jew and rely on the law and boast in God.” (Romans 2:17)
1. There was nothing wrong with what God had given the Jews (their identity and the law). But they had come to rely on it as a means of salvation, in a moralistic way. Are there any “Christian Laws” in our lives that have taken the place of the gospel as our only hope for salvation?
“… you then who teach others, do you not teach yourselves?” (Romans 2:21)
2. Do we preach God’s word and the gospel to ourselves? Why do you think Christians have a tendency to not practice what we preach?
“For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical.” (Romans 2:28)
3. It’s possible for us to subscribe to an external religious activity (“circumcision”) and make that the reason why we’re Christians. We know that it’s only external when these activities cannot change the heart. Some of these identifiers could be good behaviour, theological correctness, signs and wonders, dramatic experiences, tradition, or even architecture. Are any “circumcisions” that we rely on in our church that needs to be identified and re-examined in the light of the gospel?
4. Share, if you’re comfortable, some of the struggles you have with relying on the law or some kind of “circumcision” for God’s acceptance. Pray for one another.