Summary: There is a belief in the church today that a person called to minister can still be effectual in reaching others for the sake of the Gospel because “the gifts and calling of God are without repentance” (Rom 11:29 KJV).
In other words, a person can be in active and open unholy living and in rebellion to God’s law and still retain their position to be used to bless others without changing their sinful ways through repentance. It is true that God can use anything to promote His kingdom. He even used a donkey to get His message out, but that doesn’t mean He will give a person carte blanche to do whatever they want.
The verse quoted (Rom 11:29) is not speaking about someone in active ministry who is living in unconfessed sin. God is explaining to Gentile Christians, through the Apostle Paul, that the disobedient Jews (His chosen people), can become, by His mercy, a Born-Again Christian and share in the gracious gifts and the eternal calling of God, just as they (the Romans) were in pagan disobedience. It is God alone who made the Jews the recipient of the displays of His grace and called them to the Messianic salvation. He will never be subject to change His mind and or regrettable mistakes that He would need to repent of. He will never withdraw His grace from Israel and leave and abandon His calling of Israel.
God placed all the Jews and the Gentiles in the discussion on the same level to save all of them by the same means through His mercy that is in Christ Jesus who saves all alike by justification through faith alone. The Christians in Rome were being implored to embrace each other and sing thanksgiving to the one mercy that brought them all together and made them one. God will not change His mind regarding His chosen people and their mission and destiny. His promises concerning them are unconditional.
The word “calling” (Gk: ???s??) denotes the act of God by which He extends an invitation to all people to come and partake of His favors, whether it be by a personal revelation as like the Jewish patriarchs, or by the promises of the Gospel, or by the influences of the Holy Spirit. God never draws or invites sinners to Himself without being willing to fully bestow pardon and eternal life. It is not a vocation or career assigned to anyone by Him; it is His authoritative invitation to be a part of the Messianic kingdom with all the spiritual right and privileges that entails.
God said that He will not repent of the promises He made to the forefathers, even though many of them had become rebellious, disobedient, and had been cast off, should not be forgotten and abandoned.
The gifts (Gk: ?a´??sµa = charisma) denotes any benefit which is conferred on another as a mere matter of favor (grace), and not of reward (Rom 5:15-16, 6:23). The favors that God bestows on sinners through Jesus Christ include election, pardon, peace, joy, sanctification, justification, adoption, and eternal life in particular effectual calling, are irrevocable, and He will never repent of giving because they are the exclusive and spiritual gifts and blessings of God's free grace given in Christ
The Born-Again Christian naturally and habitually abides in Jesus and does the things that accompany salvation. “Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven” because they are ‘bad trees.’ Jesus said that “It is only the person “who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.” Jesus also said that many “will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'”(Matt 7:21-23).
If a person is living in habitual sin and rebellion against God “it is impossible,” in the case of those who have “once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their harm and holding him up to contempt” (Heb 6:4-6).
The Bible tells us that “no one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God” who protects them and the “evil one does not touch them” (1 John 3:9, 5:18). Those who naturally and habitually obey the Word of God and “walk as Jesus did” do so because God's love is truly made complete” in them (1 John 2:5-6 NIV).
When a person is living in unconfessed sin and does not repent before God He actively stands in front of them in full military battle armor resisting them and will not show them favor in any situation ( 1 Peter 5:9; James 4:6-10). When a person choses to walk in holiness and humility, submitting their self to God, He lifts them up so that they will be able to resist the devil who then has to flee from them.