Summary: God loves Israel but only a remnant will be saved!
Please open your Bibles to the Letter to the Romans.
We continue our study of this wonderful letter to the church in Rome 2000 years ago. This letter is very much applicable to us today here in America. Read along with me the opening passage, Romans 1:1-7…….
And so we can note that the letter is for Believers of Jesus Christ, the church in Rome. Let us remind ourselves what that church in Rome looked like. Rome was the capital of the world at that time and so of course there were Romans in the church, but there were many others who came from other parts of the world, especially from the Mideast. And since Christianity came through the Hebrew faith and the Apostle Paul himself was a Hebrew (a Jew) there were Jews in the church. All churches of course will always have non-Christians, whether they are seekers or just hanging out. And so, the church in Rome had Christians, non-Christians, Jews, and Gentiles (the non-Jews).
The last few weeks we had noted that God through the Apostle Paul described the Christian in Romans 6-8. God now focuses on the Hebrews in Chapters 9-11. We will learn more of the history of Israel in Romans 9. Romans 10 states the condition of the Jews at that time and Romans 11 speaks of the future of Israel. Although Romans 9-11 focuses on the Jews, there are many biblical principles which can apply to us today.
Paul was the Apostle to the Gentiles.
But did you notice how much this apostle Paul loved the Jews?
v1-3: Paul was willing to die for the sake of Jews being saved!
Take a glance at Romans 10:1…..
And look at Romans 11:13-14……
Paul had a heart for the Jews; but more importantly, God has a heart for Israel! And this is confirmed in v4-5, we note, God gave the people of Israel many blessings! God adopted them as His children. God gave them His glory and covenants. God gave the Hebrews perfect instructions, an awesome place to worship, and wonderful promises. God laid the foundations through Israel for the Savior of all humankind!
God did everything for and through the people of Israel, but is all of Israel going to heaven? The answer of course is absolutely not! The Apostle Paul pleaded for the Jews to receive the Gospel of Jesus Christ; and look again at v27…
God did everything for and through the people of Israel, but only a remnant (only a portion) of the people of Israel will be saved. This is the main message of Romans 9 but a question has to be asked: Did God not keep His promise to Israel? Most of Romans Chapter 9 gives the answer about God’s promise to Israel.
First of all, in v6-9, God reminds the church of how Israel started and how it grew. Whose idea was it to have a people called Israel, God or man??
God took the initiative to have a special people; God called Israel His Chosen People! Let’s briefly think back to Genesis. God created man and woman to share Himself because God is love. But man sinned against God and heaven on earth was lost. And God revealed His love again by immediately making a promise of salvation; God said in Genesis 3:15, “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel."
And remember, even when the whole world went against God? God made a commitment to one man and his family. Through Noah, mankind, even though sinful, was saved on earth; why? - because God loves people!
In Genesis 11, man thought they could ignore God and be their own god; and so, God dispersed people to different parts of the world! It was man’s sin that tore apart the world to different races! And you know it’s a sin to be racist; but it is also a sin to be a supernationalist! It is sin that separates people from people, nation from other nations. We all need to realize that all people come from God and only God can unite!
God loves people! And so although God had to judge people by dispersing them, God already had a plan to unite everyone again by choosing a people through whom salvation will come! And of course, this chosen people is Israel and it started with God calling Abraham. But just because God chose a people through Abraham, does it mean that all of Abraham’s descendants will be saved? The answer of course is no because most did not trust God, including Abraham. Remember what Abraham and Sarah did even though God promised a son through them? Abraham had a son Ishmael through Hagar, an Egyptian. The promise of Israel was to come from Abraham, then through whom?? – Isaac!