*Scripture verses covered in this section's commentary are noted in italics

Romans 3:2 meaning

The Jewish people still hold a special place with God.

After asking the rhetorical question in Romans 3:1, whether Jews have any advantage, Paul answers with an emphatic “Yes” by saying Great in every respect (v 2). The Jews are God’s chosen people; of course they are special (Deuteronomy 7:6). The premier advantage they have is the written Word of God, that they were entrusted with the oracles of God (v 2) There is a direct connection between Paul’s theme statement that the righteous live by faith and this assertion that having the oracles of God pose an advantage; we live righteously when we believe (have faith) that God’s instructions are for our best, and follow His ways.

The Bible lights a path of what is true and real. It shows the way to live in a manner that fulfills our design as humans. Many people throughout the ages have risked or lost their lives to gain access to the Bible. William Tyndale was killed for daring to translate the Bible into English. In oppressive countries throughout history, owning a Bible could land someone in jail. This threat still exists in some countries today.

The Word of God has power that leads to life, power to live free from sin and slavery (Romans 1:16). This of course is why earthly rulers who seek to control others don’t like the Bible. The Bible claims that God has authority over all mankind and brings freedom, life, and light. This is a huge advantage and a tremendous benefit to individuals, but a threat to tyrants.

Ironically, the competing Jewish authorities opposing Paul and his allies in Rome claim to be experts in the Bible, but Paul will make clear that their knowledge lacks understanding.

Biblical Text

2 Great in every respect. First of all, that they were entrusted with the oracles of God.

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