I. Heritage is not Holiness; Election is corporate and to Blessing (not individual forgiveness). Hardening is in our choices.
9:6 it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all ek Israel who are of Israel (Gal 3:7-9), 12 "The older shall serve the younger." 13 As it is written, "Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated." 17 For the Scripture says to the Pharaoh, "For this very purpose I have exalted/raised you up, that I may show My power in you, and that My name may be declared in all the earth." 18 Therefore He has mercy on whom He wills, and whom He wills He hardens. Ex 9:27 “I have sinned this time, the Lord is righteous?
APP: God can harden/fix people in their bad choices to display His glory/power in justly judging them; so be quick to obey (Rm 11:20).
II. Those who want righteousness from God must be careful to do what is right in His sight
10: 1 Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted to the righteousness of God. 4 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. 5 For Moses writes about the righteousness which is of the law, "The man who does those things shall live by them."
APP: The righteousness required for blessing is being careful to do what is right in God's sight, from initial reception to obedient receptivity.
III. We all have faith to believe that God is who He said He is, and will do what He said He'll do (Heb 11:6)
6 the righteousness of faith speaks 8 "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart" (the word of faith which we preach):
9 if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead (1:4), you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation/glorification.
APP:Wholehearted belief and acknowledgment of Christ's Lordship is necessary for glorification. How is He your Lord?
IV. Faith relies on the Revelation of God about what has occurred, and will or won't happen in the future, and calls upon Him
11 For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame." (Rm 9:33; Isa 28:16) 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him 13 "whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved." (Joel 2:32) 14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? 15 And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: " How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!" (Isa 52:7 Our God reigns) 16 But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, "LORD, who has believed our report?" (Isa 53:1)
17 So then faith is ek hearing, and hearing by/dia the word of God.
APP: Our faith/belief must be based upon the Revelation of God, and our behavior based upon our belief, if we're to reap the benefits.
V. God repeatedly reaches out to those who disobey and reject Him in an effort to get them to repent so it's totally their choice.
18 ...have they not heard? Yes indeed: "Their sound has gone out to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world." 19 But I say, did Israel not know? First Moses says: " I will provoke you to jealousy by those who are not a nation, I will move you to anger by a foolish nation." 20 But Isaiah is very bold and says: " I was found by those who did not seek Me; I was made manifest to those who did not ask for Me." 21 But to Israel he says: "All day long I have stretched out My hands to a disobedient and contrary people."
APP: Failure to submit to God's will is sourced in our willing ignorance and satanically influenced self-will, which we can change.
VI. God always keeps His sovereign promises, especially that of Blessing the whole world through the descendents of Abraham (Gen 12)
11:1 has God cast away His people? Certainly not! For I also am an Israelite...2 God has not cast away His people whom He foreknew. 11..have they stumbled that they should fall? Certainly not! But thru their fall, to provoke them to jealousy, salvation has come to the Gentiles.
20 Because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be haughty, but fear. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, He may not spare you either. 22 Therefore consider the goodness and severity of God: on those who fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in goodness/virtue. Otherwise you also will be cut off. 23 And they also, if they do not continue in unbelief, will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again. 29 For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.
APP: Justified believers will be cut off from blessing if they don't continue in goodness; those who repent and return will be blessed.
Questions for Reflection/Discussion/Response:
1. Why would someone think that their ideas about what's right in God's sight are correct? How can a finite being know infinite truth?
2. Does praying for someone's salvation make a difference? How would God answer that prayer if the person/nation is uncooperative?
3. If we don't believe and act upon God's promises, nor deny ourselves daily to follow the Lord Jesus, what kind of “salvation” can we expect?
4. When and how do you call upon the Lord? What happens? For what benefits are you believing Him?
5. What can you do to experience the benefits of the good news and share them with others?