“No one is righteous – not even one.
No one is truly wise;
No one is seeking God.
All have turned away; all have become useless.
No one does good, not a single one.”
For no one can ever be made right with God by doing what the law commands. The law simply shows us how sinful we are.
But now God has shown us a way to be made right with him without keeping the requirements of the law.
We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes no matter who we are.
For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when He freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed His life, shedding His blood.”
The above is extracted from Romans 3 (NLT in case you didn’t recognize it). It seems Paul wrote the first two chapters of Romans to make sure that he set the standard of God’s requirements out of reach for both the irreligious and the religious alike. As he says later on: “For God has imprisoned everyone in disobedience so he could have mercy on everyone.” (Romans 11:32 NLT). Which must surely be one of the most mind boggling statements in the Bible. No wonder Paul goes on to say: “How impossible it is for us to understand His decisions and His ways!”
But understanding it all is not where it is at. Believing and trusting in Him is.
Having said that Paul gives understanding its best shot in Romans. I personally like that.