I’ve got some good news and I’ve got some bad news – which would you like to hear first?
I guess since I’m the one writing this, you’ll get whatever I give you first. So without further adieu, here’s the bad news:
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,Romand 3:23
In very few contexts can you use the word all and it actually mean all, but such is the case here. All is not hyperbole. All have sinned. Every last one of us. There are no exceptions. And not only have we all sinned, the result is that we have all fallen pathetically short of God’s standard. Woefully short. Like, not even past the tee boxes kind of short.
This is very bad news, indeed.
Ah, but there is still good news:
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.Romans 3:23-24 (emphasis added)
I love how our modern English translations separate verses 23-24 with a comma. There’s hardly a pause between the two clauses – the good news quickly renders the bad news out of date and expired like that half-empty jar in the back corner of your refrigerator. Yes, I have sinned. Yes I have fallen short of the glory of God. But by God’s grace, through faith in Christ Jesus, I am justified – “just-as-if-I’d” never sinned.
Take heart, dear friends – there is more grace in Christ than sin in us.