Having already established God’s purpose for believers, the fact predestination dictates no one can change his or her future or be separated from God’s love, the apostle Paul now addresses the people of Israel explaining their destiny was also predestined according to God’s will.
In this section of his letter to the Roman church’s Paul explains the fate of the Israelites was not based on works rather it is according to grace God’s chosen people will be judged, or should I say have been judged since the apostle explains believers were chosen long before their birth.
“1 I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying, my conscience confirms it in the Holy Spirit— 2 I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart.” (Romans 9:12)
Speaking according to the word of God Paul shares his sorrow for the people of Israel who face judgment in tune with each person’s faith and acknowledgment of the fulfillment of prophecy found throughout the word.
“3 For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, those of my own race, 4 the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption as sons; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises.” (Romans 9:3-4)
Paul’s sympathy for the people of Israel is so profound he would gladly give up his inheritance so that all Israelites could become recipients of God’s promise however, according to foreknowledge Paul is already doing all he can to fulfill his mission as a part of God’s perfect plan for the apostle’s life.
“5 Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of Christ, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen.” (Romans 9:5)
Paul mentions the Jewish ancestry of Christ which derives from the lineage that stretches all the way to Abraham. From the prophets to Jesus, Paul identifies the ancestral trace as uni-racial, as Jewish.
“6 It is not as though God’s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. 7 Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children. On the contrary, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” (Romans 9:6-7)
God’s promise t Israel, His “word” included the concept of foreknowledge by which all Israelites would be chosen, much like Abraham and his son Isaac who were predestined according to their faith to come, not of works.
“8 In other words, it is not the natural children who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring.” (Romans 9:8)
Here Paul differentiates the physical seed and the spiritual seed of Abraham by which God would choose those worthy of His promise. Those with faith will receive God’s inheritance while those in the flesh, in spite of their lineage to Abraham will not.
“9 For this was how the promise was stated: “At the appointed time I will return, and Sarah will have a son.” (Romans 9:9)
God’s promise was one based on Abraham’s faith since he and his wife Sarah were both elderly, far beyond conception and childbearing. Since Abraham and Sarah both keep true to their faith, God fulfilled His promise and blessed them with a son destined to become a heir to the kingdom.
10 Not only that, but Rebekah’s children had one and the same father, our father Isaac.” (Romans 9:10)
Paul illustrates another example of predestination when God chose Jacob over Esau, both sons of a chosen faithful Jewish servant, Isaac.
“11 Yet, before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad—in order that God’s purpose in election might stand: 12 not by works but by him who calls—she was told, “The older will serve the younger.” (Romans 9:11-12)
Paul explains the concept of predestination as a part of God’s perfect plan which involves selection according to His will. It is by faith we are chosen as heirs to His kingdom, not or works, though it is by works we are sanctified and made righteous.
“13 Just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.” (Romans 9:13)
Here Paul uses “miseō”, Greek for “love less” not to say God actually hated Esau but loved Jacob that much more for his faith thereby granting him the inheritance and fulfillment of His promise.
Paul’s message in this section of his epistle to the Romans is clear. Though Israel was a nation shosen by God it is by faith rather than flesh heirs are chosen, predestined to receive the gift of eternal life according to the foreknowledge of God almighty. Let us pray!
We thank you for your blessings in our lives and for your servant Paul,
We praise you Lord for his wisdom and for his works through this scripture,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to use these verses in our lives
As we grow in you through the teachings of your faithful apostle.
Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.
God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and a place with you in heaven
According to your word, your everlasting wisdom and strength.
May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.
We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre