The Fear of the Lord
A Sermon on Romans 3:18-20
“There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin. (ESV)
Why do we sin? What drives us to chase after everything that dishonors God? The underlying answer is quoted from Psalm 36 in this Romans passage, “There is no fear of God before their eyes (Romans 3:18).” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones explains fear as reverential awe, a desire to worship God, understanding that God is the judge of all the earth, and a fear of punishment. Unsaved man does not fear the eternal punishment of the holy God. In this passage, Paul also points out that the very law in which the Jews boast has also condemned them. We are all guilty under sin. It seems as if Paul has stressed this repeatedly in recent passages and Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains that it is because every mouth needs to be stopped. Scripture shows us the standard that we must live up to and that standard shows us how truly vile we are. That alone should silence all arguing and excuses. Dr. Lloyd-Jones asks that we examine our hearts and our mouths; are we still doubting or arguing against the almighty God or has our mouth been stopped by His righteousness and grace? Thanks be to God who by His Son, saves us from our sin!