God is the really good judge
And you do those same bad things too. You might try to blame other people, but you are just as bad as them, so if you try to blame them, you really blame yourself.* And, you know, God will judge people that do bad things, and he knows the true story, so he will judge them the right way. So if you do the same bad things as the people you blame, God will punish you too. Think about this. God is very good to you, he doesn’t easily get angry with you, and he doesn’t punish you straight away for the bad things you do. You know that God is good like that, right? He is good to you. He tries to get you to come back to him and stop doing bad things.
If you don’t turn around and come back to God, you just make things worse for yourself. One day, he will get really angry with you. On that day he will judge everybody properly and fairly. God will give each of us the right pay for whatever we have done.* Some people keep on doing good things, and later on God will be good to them. They want to make God happy, so they listen to him, and they do the good things he tells them to do. Later on, he will give them life that never ends. They will live with him for ever. But he will get really angry with selfish people that don’t want to know the true story but just want to do bad things. 9-11 And God will not treat one sort of people any better than all the others. It will be the same for Jewish people and for people that are not Jewish. God will punish everyone that does bad things, he will punish Jewish people that do bad things and people that are not Jewish that do bad things. They will all get very big trouble. But God will do good to everyone that does good things, Jewish people and people that are not Jewish. God will make them great. They will feel happy and quiet inside themselves, and everybody will respect them.*
12 God gave the law to the Jewish people, so they know that law, and if they do bad things, God will punish them the way that law says. And the same too for people that are not Jewish, if they do bad things, he will punish them. 13 It doesn’t matter if you know that law or not, if you do good things, God will tell you, “You are all right.” 14 There are people that aren’t Jewish, but sometimes they do good things just like the law says. They don’t have that law, but they know in their minds what is right and what is wrong. 15 They show that God wrote his law inside them. They feel bad whenever they do something that is wrong, but sometimes they do something that is right, and it makes them feel good. 16 God sees everything that everybody does and everything that everybody thinks. Nobody can hide anything from him. One day, God will get Jesus Christ to judge everybody about these things. That is the message that I tell everybody.
(The next part, 2:17—3:8, mainly talks to Jewish people, so we have not translated it yet.)
* 2:1 Matthew 7:1; Luke 6:37 * 2:6 Psalm 62:12; Proverbs 24:12 * 2:9-11 Deuteronomy 10:17