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Romans 3:26

    Romans 3:26 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believes in Jesus.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    for the showing, I say , of his righteousness at this present season: that he might himself be just, and the justifier of him that hath faith in Jesus.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And to make clear his righteousness now, so that he might himself be upright, and give righteousness to him who has faith in Jesus.

    Webster's Revision

    for the showing, I say , of his righteousness at this present season: that he might himself be just, and the justifier of him that hath faith in Jesus.

    World English Bible

    to demonstrate his righteousness at this present time; that he might himself be just, and the justifier of him who has faith in Jesus.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    for the shewing, I say, of his righteousness at this present season: that he might himself be just, and the justifier of him that hath faith in Jesus.

    Clarke's Commentary on Romans 3:26

    To declare, I say, at this time - To manifest now, by the dispensation of the Gospel, his righteousness, his infinite mercy; and to manifest it in such a way, that he might still appear to be the just God, and yet the justifier, the pardoner, of him who believeth in Jesus. Here we learn that God designed to give the most evident displays both of his justice and mercy. Of his justice, in requiring a sacrifice, and absolutely refusing to give salvation to a lost world in any other way; and of his mercy, in providing The sacrifice which his justice required. Thus, because Jesus was an atonement, a ransom price, for the sin of the world, therefore God can, consistently with his justice, pardon every soul that believeth in Jesus. This is the full discovery of God's righteousness, of his wonderful method of magnifying his law and making it honorable; of showing the infinite purity of his justice, and of saving a lost world.

    Hitherto, from the ninth verse, the apostle had gone on without interruption, proving that Jew and Gentile were in a state of guilt and condemnation, and that they could be saved only by the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. The Jew, finding his boasted privileges all at stake, interrupts him, and asks: -

    Barnes' Notes on Romans 3:26

    At this time - The time now since the Saviour has come, now is the time when he manifests it.

    That he might be just - This verse contains the substance of the gospel. The word "just" here does not mean benevolent, or merciful, though it may sometimes have that meaning; see the Matthew 1:19 note, also John 17:25 note. But it refers to the fact that God had retained the integrity of his character as a moral governor; that he had shown a due regard to his Law, and to the penalty of the Law by his plan of salvation. Should he forgive sinners without an atonement, justice would be sacrificed and abandoned. The Law would cease to have any terrors for the guilty, and its penalty would be a nullity. In the plan of salvation, therefore, he has shown a regard to the Law by appointing his Son to be a substitute in the place of sinners; not to endure its precise penalty, for his sufferings were not eternal, nor were they attended with remorse of conscience, or by despair, which are the proper penalty of the Law; but he endured so much as to accomplish the same ends as if those who shall be saved by him had been doomed to eternal death.

    That is, he showed that the Law could not be violated without introducing suffering; and that it could not be broken with impunity. He showed that he had so great a regard for it, that he would not pardon one sinner without an atonement. And thus he secured the proper honor to his character as a lover of his Law, a hater of sin, and a just God. He has shown that if sinners do not avail themselves of the offer of pardon by Jesus Christ, they must experience in their own souls forever the pains which this substitute for sinners endured in behalf of people on the cross. Thus, no principle of justice has been abandoned; no threatening has been modified; no claim of his Law has been let down; no disposition has been evinced to do injustice to the universe by suffering the guilty to escape. He is, in all this great Transaction, a just moral governor, as just to his Law, to himself, to his Son, to the universe, when he pardons, as he is when he sends the incorrigible sinner down to hell. A full compensation, an equivalent, has been provided by the sufferings of the Saviour in the sinner's stead, and the sinner may be pardoned.

    And the justifier of him ... - Greek, "Even justifying him that believeth, etc." This is the uniqueness and the wonder of the gospel. Even while pardoning, and treating the ill-deserving as if they were innocent, he can retain his pure and holy character. His treating the guilty with favor does not show that be loves guilt and pollution, for he has expressed his abhorrence of it in the atonement. His admitting them to friendship and heaven does not show that he approves their past conduct and character, for he showed how much he hated even their sins by giving his Son to a shameful death for them. When an executive pardons offenders, there is an abandonment of the principles of justice and law. The sentence is set aside; the threatenings of the law are departed from; and it is done without compensation. It is declared that in certain cases the law may be violated, and its penalty "not" be inflicted. But not so with God. He shows no less regard to his law in pardoning than in punishing. This is the grand, glorious, special feature of the gospel plan of salvation.

    Him which believeth in Jesus - Greek, "Him who is of the faith of Jesus;" in contradistinction from him who is of the works of the Law; that is, who depends on his own works for salvation.

    Wesley's Notes on Romans 3:26

    3:26 For a demonstration of his righteousness - Both of his justice and mercy. That he might be just - Showing his justice on his own Son. And yet the merciful justifier of every one that believeth in Jesus. That he might be just - Might evidence himself to be strictly and inviolably righteous in the administration of his government, even while he is the merciful justifier of the sinner that believeth in Jesus. The attribute of justice must be preserved inviolate; and inviolate it is preserved, if there was a real infliction of punishment on our Saviour. On this plan all the attributes harmonize; every attribute is glorified, and not one superseded no, nor so much as clouded.