What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.” “Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.” “The venom of asps is under their lips.” “Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness.” “Their feet are swift to shed blood; in their paths are ruin and misery, and the way of peace they have not known.” “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.
Romans 3:9-20 (ESV)
1. Everyone, everywhere, without exception, stands guilty before God.
Verses 10-18 are a song of mourning. God is mourning over the sinful deadness of mankind.
The sin of all sins: "There is no fear of God before their eyes." To fear God is to live like He is real, He matters most, He knows all, and He does what is right. Without the fear of God, we live as if each of us is our own god.
All are culpable.
2. Everyone, everywhere, without exception, stand accountable before God.
There is nothing to say before a Holy God who sees, who knows, and who never forgets. He sees what we do and He knows what we want to do. We only hear a whisper of the horror of the day of judgment before an angry God.
It is much much better to be convicted of sin here than condemned of sin there.
All will be punished.
Words of hope in verse 21: "But now..."
One is righteous, only one. One understands. He continually seeks after God. There is only the fear of God before His eyes.
Because of Christ's death, anyone anywhere can be completely forgiven and made righteous.