Romans 10:3 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Romans 10:3, NIV: Since they did not know the righteousness of God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness.

Romans 10:3, ESV: For, being ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness.

Romans 10:3, KJV: For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

Romans 10:3, NASB: For not knowing about God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God.

Romans 10:3, NLT: For they don't understand God's way of making people right with himself. Refusing to accept God's way, they cling to their own way of getting right with God by trying to keep the law.

Romans 10:3, CSB: Since they are ignorant of the righteousness of God and attempted to establish their own righteousness, they have not submitted to God's righteousness.

What does Romans 10:3 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Paul has expressed his desire and prayer that the Jewish people would be saved. He admires their spiritual passion, but he knows that their enthusiasm is not driven by accurate knowledge about what is most important to God: faith in Christ.

Paul calls them ignorant of the righteousness of God. He may mean that they do not understand that God requires absolutely perfect righteousness in order for anyone to be received by Him on their own merits. They do not understand that no human being is able to achieve that level of righteousness (Romans 3:23). Or, it may be that Paul means they are ignorant that God offers His righteousness to all who come to Him through faith in Christ. In either case, the Israelites were missing the key to being accepted by God and saved from His wrath.

Their lack of understanding of how God's righteousness worked caused them to try to set up their own standard of what it means to be righteous in God's eyes. Paul describes this as a prideful attempt to decide what God should be satisfied with instead of submitting to His declaration of what it means to be righteous before Him.