Romans 2:6-9 6 God “will give to each person according to what he has done.” 7 To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. 8 But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.
I can tell already that reading the book of Romans is going to be like eating at an all-you-can-eat buffet. There will be no lack of food in this book and I will probably walk away each day having eaten way too much. But a spiritual stomach ache probably won’t hurt much. It just might give us all a headache as we try to digest and figure out all that Paul is talking about.
Today, Paul is giving a dissertation in God’s judgment. This is the “reap as you sow” principle at work. He uses the Old Testament (Psalm 62:12) to support his point here. When we think of this principle, most of our minds go to a financial investment place. So let’s go there. There is a big difference between making an investment in a mutual fund and making an investment in the state lottery. Well, there used to be a difference; maybe not so much anymore. But stick with me here. The first is a long term strategy to build wealth. The latter is a gamble, a waste of money. The first provides you with some sort of return. The second provides you with an empty wallet and an empty pantry.
Paul tells us here that if we persist in doing good, we will be rewarded by God. When his judgment is poured out, we will find favor; we will find eternal life. But if we play the lottery, er, I mean… do evil, God’s wrath and anger will be poured out. When we are self seeking and reject the truth (that God will provide for instance) we better look out.
Now I know that there are millions of people in this world making bad choices. There are thousands who are purposely doing evil. Many of them are successful. Many of them seem to be happy. They don’t seem to be receiving God’s wrath and judgment. Here’s the deal – they will. I hate to say it, but they will. This life that we live is an eternal one. Paul is reminding us today that what we reap, we sow. Our spiritual investment decisions here will determine our eternity. A quite sobering thought really, isn’t it? There are really only two investment choices: You can either choose the world’s lottery system or you can invest in Jesus Christ Mutual. Make a wise investment.