Romans 11 – 12

Romans 11

God has not permanently cast away physical Israel but he has set physical Israel aside until another time, when he will call all physical Israel into a New Covenant spiritual Israel (Jer 31:31).  So far only a few have been called out of physical Israel and only a few have been called from the Gentiles into the New Covenant. 

Paul is trying to resolve difficulties between the Jews and Gentiles in Rome with this section of his letter.

Romans 11:1 I say then, Hath God cast away his people [physical Israel; Judah]? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.

God has not rejected physical Israelites or Jews at this time, he is simply waiting for the proper time to call them.  Today God is calling out some from Israel and some Gentiles to the New Covenant.  later the New Covenant will be extended to all peoples when Messiah comes (Joel 2:32, Is 60:3-5). 

Romans 11:26  And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: 11:27  For this is my [New Covenant Jer 31:31] covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.

The calling of some Gentiles does not mean that God is not also calling some from physical Israel.

Romans 11:2 God hath not cast away his people [Israel Judah] which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying, 11:3 Lord, they have killed thy prophets, and digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life.

11:4 But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have reserved to myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal.

11:5 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant [called out to the New Covenant] according to the election of grace. 

Paul is referring to those called out to the New Covenant who have not bowed the knee to false teachings and idols of men.

The works of future law keeping cannot atone for past sin; only the mercy and pardon of God through the atoning sacrifice of Christ can cover PAST sins.

11:6 And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.

11:7 What then? [physical] Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; . . .

Physical Mosaic Israel cannot obtain salvation and eternal life by future law keeping, because there is no effective atonement for PAST sin.

The Mosaic sacrifices served as a reminder of the need to atone for sin and they served to maintain the physical Mosaic Covenant, but they did not atone spiritually or have the promise of spiritual eternal life; only the promise of physical blessings.

The faithful called out to the spiritual New Covenant will attain to spiritual salvation and eternal life if they hold fast and overcome.  Therefore the New Covenant is much better than the Mosaic Covenant. 

Jeremiah 31:31    Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:

31:32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord:

31:33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.

31:34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the Lord: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.

Romans 11:7 . . . but the election  hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded

PAST sin can only be atoned for by sincere repentance, a baptismal commitment to go and sin no more, the application of the sacrifice of Christ; and the gift of the Holy Spirit to empower people to overcome sin and keep the Word of God in future

Romans 11:8 (According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day. 11:9 And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompence unto them: 11:10 Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway.

Why is most of  physical Israel and much of Judah being kept in darkness and ignorance, and not being called out to the New Covenant until Christ comes? 

Because Israel was chosen by God to be an example and instruction and a prophetic allegory, so that we could learn from their example and not turn aside as they turned aside.

God has not called out most of physical Israel/Judah  to the New Covenant at this time, so that the Gentiles and Israel learn the lesson that only faith in the atoning sacrifice and resurrection of Christ can cover PAST sin! 

Keeping the law faultlessly from this point forward, cannot atone for PAST sin already committed, even if we are perfect from now on, the price for PAST law breaking must still be paid!

11:11 I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. 11:12 Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness?

Although most of physical Israel/Judah is stumbling now, when the lesson is learned and completed and the world has been humbled:  Jesus Christ will return to remove Satan and open the understanding of mankind, turning humanity to godliness

The history of physical Israel/Judah is a lesson and instruction for all nations!

11:13 For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office:

Paul states that physical Israel/Judah is an example for our instruction: and the Called Out of spiritual Israel are to be an example of faithful zealous keeping of the Word of God for physical Israel! 

As Jesus said; we are to be a LIGHT [an example of godliness] on a hill which cannot be hid!

11:14 If by any means I may provoke to emulation them which are my flesh, and might save some of them. 11:15 For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead?

11:16 For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: [if the faithful called out first fruits are holy, the remainder of repentant humanity will also become holy] and if the root be holy, so are the branches

If Spiritual Israel is holy, then all those who are called into spiritual Israel in future, and that includes all flesh (Joel 2:28); will become holy.  This then extends to include all people being grafted into spiritual Israel in their proper time during the millennium or in the main harvest: They will all also become holy!

The lesson is that physical Israel was broken off from her Husband, the Root of Salvation; so that the Gentiles may be called into the New Covenant of spiritual Israel and grafted into the tree of God. 

Therefore do not boast about yourselves, but make your boast in Christ, for you were grafted into Christ by God the Father.

Our calling is the doing of God according to his plan and mercy, and not of our own doing!  Therefore let not the Jew boast against the Gentile and let not the Gentile boast against the Jew.

11:17 And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree [a Gentile], wert graffed in among [grafted into the spiritual Israel of God] them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree; 11:18 Boast not against the [broken off natural branches which are physical Israel] branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.

11:19 Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in.

Let us not look down on the unconverted or boast ourselves against those who are not yet called into the New Covenant, for our calling is the gift of God, and came by God’s will and NOT by our own will. 

Physical Israel and the bulk of humanity cannot believe now, for they have not been called and their eyes have not been opened by God; their time will come as God works out his plan in his own good order.

11:20 Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:

Today Judah stumbles at Christ because of a Unitarian mindset; while the nations of Israel also stumble at Christ, assuming that they have been made free from obedience to the law by Christ’s sacrifice. 

In fact we are freed from the bondage of sin, by sincere repentance and the application of the sacrifice of Christ!  We are then to go forward and sin no more.  Further willful sin makes a mockery of the sacrifice of Christ, and his sacrifice WILL NOT be applied to the willful unrepentant sinner.  Anyone who says that Christ is love and will overlook sin because he understands our weakness; is a LIAR and is the spirit of Antichrist! 

Yes, we are weak and we cannot resist sin on our own:  But Jesus Christ is a Strong and Mighty Man of War against sin; who will give us the victory if we will only follow him like Joshua did. 

Take refuge in our High Tower of Strength and run to our God when we are threatened or tempted; and even if we must suffer for a time or be killed, he will raise us up on that day! 

Hebrews 11 and the histories of Daniel and his three friends, the lives of Joshua and Moses, of David and Elijah; were recorded for our example in courage and faith!  Why? To teach us the POWER of the Mighty One who delivers his faithful  and who corrects and destroys those who willfully turn back into bondage to sin, making a mockery of his deliverance!

11:21 For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee. 11:22 Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off [destroyed].

The sincerely repentant who believe the efficacy of the sacrifice of Christ and commit to go and sin no more and to live by every Word of God; will be grafted into the tree of Jesus Christ (John 15). 

All Israel/Judah and eventually all humanity will eventually have their opportunity to be called into the New Covenant and be brought into the family of God.

11:23 And they [all physical Israel and all the Gentiles] also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be graffed in: for God is able to graff them in again.

God is able to spiritually call and bring to sincere repentance and graft back into himself, those which had been broken off and rejected.  All physical Israel/Judah will be called into spiritual Israel along with the Gentiles in their proper time.

11:24 For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be graffed into their own olive tree?

Yes, salvation comes through sincere repentance from law breaking and a commitment to go and sin no more; however sincere repentance can only come when God opens our understanding by calling us to him, and the gift of the atoning sacrifice of Christ must be applied by God for all PAST sins to cleanse us from PAST sins; so that we can be reconciled to the Father in heaven. 

It is God who saves us and reconciles us to him, not our own future law keeping;  but our future law keeping keeps us reconciled to God since future sin will separate us from God again.

11:25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.

When  our Mighty One comes WITH his chosen elect to put down all enemies; he will pour out his Spirit of Peace between man and God on all flesh (Joel 2:28); so that even the wild beasts are made peaceable (Isaiah 11).

11:26 And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: 11:27 For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.

Most of physical Israel/Judah and the Gentiles are enemies of the true Word of God at this time; but their ultimate calling is sure!  Therefore let the called out of today serve God in humility, understanding that all humanity will also become the called out children of God.

11:28 As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sakes. 11:29 For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance

God’s promises are sure and God will not repent of them nor go back on His Word!

ALL have sinned including us and NO man can claim that he is saved by his own deeds. 

Under the Mosaic Covenant, Israel was a national state religion.  Once the Mosaic Covenant ended the New Covenant entered as a spiritual covenant, creating a spiritual Israel; a new spiritual nation of people called by God out of ALL nations!

11:30 For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through  their unbelief: 11:31 Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy. 11:32 For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.

Paul expresses his wonder at these things and the wisdom of our Great God.  All these things are from the great wisdom of God.

11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! 11:34 For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? 11:35 Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? 11:36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.

Therefore those who are called to the New Covenant are to rise up out of baptism in newness of mind and spirit, fully dedicated to living by every Word of God!  The old worldly sinful man being destroyed, and a new person rising up from that watery grave fully passionately committed to “go and sin no more!”  

 

Romans 12

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, [submitting ourselves to God’s Will, God’s Word and God’s Law] holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

12:2 And be not conformed [to worldliness] to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind [be transformed from sinfulness to holiness, through the gift of the Holy Spirit and the keeping of the whole Word of God], that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. [that you may do the will of God, living by every Word of God].

The called out are to be humble before God, submitting to the authority of God’s Word.

12:3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly [humbly], according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

Paul now goes into the various gifts and offices among the brethren, saying that NONE is any better than any other.  The ONLY hierarchy is God the Father, then Jesus Christ, then husbands, and then wives/mothers over their children (1 Cor 11:3).

All other offices are offices of service and not of hierarchical authority! 

The ONLY authority among the called out is the authority of God the Father and Jesus Christ and the whole Word of God.  Anyone who teaches anything differently than the Word of God is to be rejected!

All of these offices and gifts are intended to be HELPS to assist the brethren to remain focused on God the Father and Jesus Christ and to be zealous for every Word of God. 

The ONLY authority is the authority of the Word of God which the faithful keep and teach; and when any person departs from the Word of God they have  no authority whatsoever; no matter who ordained them or what title they happen to claim.

12:4 For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: 12:5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

These gifts are to serve and help one another; not so that anyone can overflow with pride or dominate others.

12:6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;

12:7 Or ministry, let us wait[diligently attend to] on our ministering : or he that teacheth, [diligently attend to] on teaching; 12:8 Or he that exhorteth, [diligently attend to] on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness.  

God DOES NOT work through one man: God works in various ways through EVERYONE that he has called!

12:9 Let love be without dissimulation [honest and sincere, not feigned]. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.

We are to learn the difference between the holy and the profane; which is the difference between the Word of God and worldliness; and we are to keep the whole Word of God while utterly rejecting worldliness.

12:10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another [above ourselves]; 12:11 Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; 12:12 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; 12:13 Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.

Be humble and longsuffering in all trials with patient persevering godliness.

12:14 Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. 12:15 Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. 12:16 Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits.

Paul repeats the instructions of Jesus Christ in Matthew 5:44.

12:17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. 12:18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.

12:19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place [turn away from] unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. 12:20 Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.

12:21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.   

If only the brethren, the various leaders and the various corporate groups of today’s Spiritual Ekklesia  would follow these instructions!

 

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