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ROMANS CHAPTERS 9 & 10

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1&2 I am telling the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience testifies with me in the Holy Spirit, 2 that I have great sorrow and unceasing grief in my heart. 

 

Rom 9,1-26

(219a) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> The elect >> Man is a spectator of his own salvation >> God elects us through His sovereign will – The content of chapters nine, ten and eleven revolve around the nation of Israel predestined through the foreknowledge of God to crucify their own messiah at the beginning of this age, and then returns to faith in Christ at the end of the age for the purpose of leading a Great Endtime Revival. Act 2-23 says, "This Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death." Peter's statement depicts both the will of man and the will of God in the death of Christ. In chapter nine we see Paul using pharaoh to show that God has predestined Israel to reject Christ, yet we don’t see anyone forcing their hand to nail Him to the cross. In many respects, predestination is a subject about time, more than about God imposing His will over man. Predestination is an active choice that God makes with mankind, choosing one person over another, but this is merely a perspective. There are other instances in Scripture that speak of predestination in terms of foreknowledge; He simply knew what would happen, which is vastly different from what Paul is saying, yet both depict realities that are anchored in Scripture. We must keep in mind the context of Paul’s argument, specifically that God overrides the will of man. Pharaoh virtually had no choice but to harden his heart, yet God still found fault with him, believing in his heart that his works were completely his own, not suspecting that God was using him as a puppet. What pharaoh did was predestined to occur, but at the same time there was an ownership of behavior on pharaoh’s part that we cannot ignore. There was complete ownership of all his anger against God. So we really do have two things happening at the same time: God’s pre-destiny and man’s expression of it; the two of them cannot be separated, but neither can we see them as a single entity.

Rom 9,1-3

(63h) Paradox >> Anomalies >> Sarcasm >> Ignoring the truth to convey the truth

(123c) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Love >> Spiritual affection >> Compassion >> Compassion is the emotion of the Spirit – The people Paul was describing endlessly tortured him and used to beat him and whip him and get him thrown in prison for years and wanted him dead. He was speaking about the Jews, that if he could he would give them his place in heaven! Paul understood the Jews because he was a Jew who persecuted the Church. He would be standing right alongside them still squelching the gospel, had Jesus not reached out and saved him. He empathized with them and related to their bondage, but whether or not we understand our enemies, we are supposed to love them, no matter what they do to us. Our enemies could be incomprehensible, yet God has called us to continue to act and behave in ways that would most benefit them, being the ultimate manifestation of love. There is one aspect of our enemies that we will always be able to relate; we were once unsaved ourselves (Tit 3,1-7), in bondage to unbelief and to the darkness of evil that dictated how we lived, but God has called us out of darkness and has raised us with Him to a higher plateau, so that now we can make right choices that benefit even our enemies, this being the agreement of the new covenant: God treats us the way we ought to treat our enemies.

(173h) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Catholicism >> Unholy sacrifice >> Offering sacrifice without God’s approval >> Sacrifice against the ways of God – Consciousness of faith is what Paul was willing to sacrifice for the sake of his fellow countrymen, the Jews. He wasn’t devaluing it as though sacrificing it for something less meaningful, such as in the story of Jacob and Esau, who sold his birthright for a single meal. He essentially sold his conscience, and God interpreted Esau’s actions as thinking so little of his inheritance as to equate it to a bowl of soup in a moment of weakness. God’s judgment on Esau was that He made it a literal transaction, and God gave Jacob the blessing that was intended for Esau, who was technically the first born. If Esau wanted to sell his birthright, God would accommodate him, and the transaction occurred in the spirit realm, but this transaction that Paul wanted to make for his fellow countrymen was not possible, because unlike Jacob who was willing to receive the birthright, Paul’s countrymen the Jews were unwilling to receive the blessing of salvation, but he also indicated that this is not the way God operates.

(188k) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Sorrow >> Grieving over your own loss >> Grieving over the loss of others

Rom 9-1,2

(81j) Thy kingdom come >> Pray without ceasing >> For the Church

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Rom 9-1

(78b) Thy kingdom come >> Sincerity of heart >> Being honest >> Telling the truth – Verse one is quite a preamble to the ninth chapter of Romans. Paul wanted us to know for sure that He wasn’t being sarcastic but was being sincere, swearing by his own conscience that he was telling the truth, that he was willing to sacrifice his soul and the hope of eternal life if it guaranteed the salvation of his countrymen. However, God is unwilling to sacrifice one soul for many, except in the case of His Son, and Paul is not the savior of the Jews. Although Jesus is the savior of the Jews, they still cannot be saved unless they believe in Him, because God is unwilling to violate the will of man for any reason. To believe in Him is to trust Him and love Him, for how could God save a people who hated Him? If everything changed when they passed from this life into the next, then what would be the point of this life?

(108f) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Balance >> Conscience is the balance between God and man – “Conscience bearing witness in the Holy Spirit” is an excellent definition of faith, which is how we relate to God. We know that Heb 11-1 says that faith is “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen,” but Paul disassembled faith into its component parts. That is, the Holy Spirit alone does not represent our faith; it represents God’s faith. Likewise, conscience alone does not represent God’s faith; it represents our faith. However, when we attach our conscience to the Holy Spirit, they represent both God’s faith and our faith merged together. This is faith that comes from God through the Holy Spirit made manifest in our conscience. This suggests that having a clear conscience is a requirement for a genuine faith. When God sends His Holy Spirit into our hearts and our conscience is grafted onto Him, we become conscious of God.

(154j) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Witness of the believer >> Conscience >> Having a good conscience >> God is my conscience – Paul had to start this chapter saying, I’m telling the truth; I’m not lying.’ This was the one and only time He said this. Jesus, who commanded us to love our enemies whether we understood them or not, used to say something similar, “Truly, truly I say to you….” Since neither Jesus nor Paul was a liar, it seemed unnecessary for them to use this type of expression, except that they were trying to build confidence in us that they weren’t lying, because apparently what they were about to say would be hard to believe. Was Paul speaking to his audience when he said, “My conscience bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit,” or was he really speaking to his own heart, being that he was talking about some of his greatest enemies, those he may have been tempted to hate?

 

3-6 For I could wish that I myself were accursed, separated from Christ for the sake of my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh, 4 who are Israelites, to whom belongs the adoption as sons, and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises, 5 whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen. 6 But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel; 

 

Rom 9,3-6

(37e) Judgment >> Judgment of God >> Jesus’ humanity >> He was part of the lineage of David – Paul dabbles in the genealogy of Israel, bringing to mind the patriarchs whom God used to establish faith in God, and then he takes it to another level with a dissertation about predestination implying that all these things were planned from the very beginning and suggests that this was the reason Paul cannot save his kinsmen according to the flesh by trading places with their eternal souls. Paul was selected from the foundation of the world to become an heir of the faith, and this is something that he could not override. He has no power over it, like water over a dam, he cannot un-ring a bell. So was Christ. He was destined to live a perfect life completely without sin, which was His greatest miracle, but that didn't make His mission any simpler when He offered Himself to God and died for the sins of all mankind. 

Rom 9-3

(26e) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> Death is separation from Christ

Rom 9-4,5

(210h) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Salvation is from the Jews >> The Jew first >> Jews lead the world to faith in Jesus – The mere mention of the Law and of temple worship represents the first five books of the Old Testament, and the prophets spoke of God’s love for Israel, that if they just repented of their sins and returned to Him, He would forgive them on a preemptive basis, looking forward to the cross that would come later. When we look to the Old Testament for the promise of sending Jesus Christ for the propitiation of man’s sin, it is everywhere. For instance, the temple services were an illustration of His blood sacrifice. It is no wonder people believe in the Bible; it is self-evident. Paul is saying that every aspect of God’s purpose was executed through the nation of Israel. We cannot overemphasize the importance of this nation or fully appreciate what they have suffered for us all. Had God chosen any other nation to be his people according to the flesh, they would have followed the same path as Israel, simply because Satan worked tirelessly against them for thousands of years, leading them into rebellion against God in effort to frustrate God’s plan, but through all His efforts all he could do was fulfill God’s plan. Screwed-up Israel sacrificed their Messiah as the work of Satan, and God used that to judge him and to set man free from the penalty of sin.

Rom 9-4

(36m) Gift of God >> Adopted >> We are adopted in the flesh – This short list that Paul provided stands for everything God has done with Israel over the millennia, yet it says that they too must be adopted as sons and daughters into the family of God, even though they are God’s chosen people from the original vine into which all other nations must be grafted. This adoption means something different from grafting (which Paul will discuss in chapter 11). “Adoption” means children who were once not His children have now become His children, so whose children were they before they were adopted? Mankind as a whole, both Jew and gentile, every person born into this world from the beginning of time belongs to Satan; we were the children of the devil, so anybody who believes in Jesus is born-again, adopted from the family of Satan and into the family of God. Jesus said to the Pharisees, “You are of your father the devil” (Jn 8-44); this makes it sound like those guy were really bad, but everybody is a child of the devil until they are saved—adopted is what “saved” means.

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Rom 9,6-10

(151ba) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> New Testament bears witness of the Old >> The Patriarchs >> Abraham >> Faith of Abraham

Rom 9-6

(210ib) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Salvation is from the Jews >> Jews are believers >> Jew and Gentile believers are one flock with one shepherd – Paul chose a very interesting pair of brothers to illustrate his point about predestination. On the one hand we have God’s choice of Jacob selected while still in his mother’s womb, while on the other hand we have Jacob manipulating the circumstances in order to fit into God’s choice. Although he was born chosen, he still had to steal the blessing from his brother Esau; he had to do his part in order to complete God’s choice of him, for had he not stolen the blessing, he would not have become heir to the faith. He was unaware of the significance of the blessing, that he would become part of the lineage of Christ, who would come to redeem Israel and the world from sin; he only knew he wanted the blessing because it was of God, and this is why God loved him over Esau. He was a man who sought after God’s heart as was said about David, but Esau was not like this.

 

7-10 nor are they all children because they are Abraham's descendants, but: "THROUGH ISAAC YOUR DESCENDANTS WILL BE NAMED." 8 That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants. 9 For this is the word of promise: "AT THIS TIME I WILL COME, AND SARAH SHALL HAVE A SON." 10 And not only this, but there was Rebekah also, when she had conceived twins by one man, our father Isaac;

 

Rom 9-7,8

(33c) Gift of God >> God is our Father >> Believers are children of promise – Paul announces that faith is not only a greater determining factor but is the only determining factor of those who belong to God, whether Jew or gentile. What Israel never understood was that this has always been true, even though God raised up Israel to become God’s hammer to smash the nations and destroy those who were corrupting the earth. That is not to say that Israel was the only people in the world whom God considered His children, for there were many people from other nations that feared God, and God respected and cherished their faith. The Old Testament teaches that gentiles of other nations were welcome to the citizenship of Israel to obtain all the rights of the children of Abraham, except the right to temple worship; they were not allowed in the temple. Other than that, they were welcome to all the festivals and celebrations, and they were welcome to the promises of obedience and warnings of disobedience, since they applied also to the whole of mankind and not just to Israel. There were also people from other nations that remained in their respective countries who loved God and feared Him and God received them. So it was not just Israel who were considered the children of God even in the Old Testament, but those who believed in the laws and promises of God.

Rom 9,8-13

(36l) Gift of God >> Adopted >> We are adopted by the Spirit – One of the best ways to view predestination is to portray it in terms of conception, for on the one hand, when a man fertilizes a woman’s egg during sexual intercourse, the male and female chromosomes combine with each other in a completely random fashion to produce a fetus. The level of randomness is seen in that the next child from the same parents is a completely different person. On the other hand, Ps 139,13-16 says, “For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother's womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; and in Your book were all written the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them.” It would seem that we would have to pick one of these two scenarios, since they appear mutually exclusive. As though they are essential opposites, they both make equally tenable points. We are in the fortunate circumstance of being born many thousands of years after David the psalmist wrote the above passage, so now we know much of the process through scientific advancements how conception actually works, and that model does not make room for God to stick His fingers in there and make our unformed substance, yet the Bible very explicitly says He does. Therefore, the best way to view this dilemma of God’s input is through His foreknowledge. In other words the psalmist was anthropomorphizing the process of conception as though God were personalizing each one of us. This clarifies the concept of predestination in terms of God's foreknowledge in that God treats  the fact that He knows everything in advance as personally getting involved and being the change agent in everything that happens, though only by His foreknowledge. In slight contrast Heb 10-5 says, “Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says, ‘sacrifice and offering you have not desired, but a body you have prepared for Me.’” God reserved a body for Christ that He would use to die for the sins of the world. The fact that this was God’s seed that He planted in Mary makes the resulting child very special, and in that sense we recognize God’s personal input directing the conception of His Son. Jesus was more than a forethought in God’s mind, but a specifically created being who represented Himself to all humanity. The rest of us, however, are a composite of God's  foreknowledge as to what would emerge from the void of randomness, otherwise we would have to concede that God personally and intentionally makes fetuses that have physical and mental abnormalities and mutations. Admittedly, these people and adults are just as important to society as the rest of us. Then there is the question of the world before Noah's flood, why God specifically created so many people who were destined to rebel against Him if randomness were not involved.

Rom 9,10-13

(30c) Gift of God >> God knows our needs >> He is the source of our obedience – We see Jacob running after the blessing, but we also hear Paul saying that it doesn’t depend on that, but on God who chooses. Of all the things we do in life, we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that God foreknew what we would do; that is He knew the choices we would make before the world began (1Pet 1-2). When we look in the Scriptures, primarily in the Old Testament, we see God working with mankind on a limited basis, doing things like coming down and seeing for certain if the report he had heard about Sodom and Gomorrah was actually true (Gen 18-20,21), sending two angels to investigate the case. If he sent angels to investigate the report, then who filed the original report? It was the Holy Spirit. Why then did God need to send angels to see if it were true? This is an indication that God has been dealing with mankind on a highly limited basis, suggesting that predestination is completely irrelevant. God can step back at any time from this human saga and look at the big picture in terms of foreknowledge and predestination whenever He wants, but that is not usually how He deals with mankind. We know that God knows everything from the beginning; knowing this helps us understand His infinite and eternal nature, but does little to understand how he deals with us by limiting himself and becoming like one of us, similar to what He did when He sent His Son in human flesh. Remember what Jesus said in the beatitudes about giving alms, “Do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing” (Mat 6-3)? God practices this on a regular basis! God can deal with us in terms of predestination if he wants to treat us that way, but he chooses not to view man on this level because He wants to relate to us.

(211c) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Gentiles included >> Gentiles steal the kingdom from Israel through obedience – This is an analogy where Jacob represents the Church and Esau represents Israel; we see the gentiles stealing the blessing from Israel through obedience. Isaac loved Esau and wanted to give him the blessing, but God love Jacob, who’s will took precedence over Isaac. The time had come when Isaac was old and was about to die that he wanted to transfer the blessing to the descendent of his firstborn, intending to give it to Esau. Isaac told Esau to prepare him his favorite meal, and while Esau was away providing the dinner, Jacob’s mother prepared a dinner for Jacob to give to his father, telling him to impersonate his brother, Esau. His father was blind from age, so Jacob disguised his voice to sound like Esau and placed an animal coat on his forearm to imitate the hairiness of his brother. Isaac did not detect the deception, and after finishing his meal he blessed Jacob thinking it was Esau, so that from then on the lineage of Christ would pass through his loins becoming heir to the faith. This is why we hear about "Abraham, Isaac and Jacob." Contrast that with the statement Paul made, “Though they were twins were not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, in order that God’s purpose according to His choice might stand, not because of works, but because of Him who calls, it was said to [Sarah] the older shall serve the younger, just as it is written, ‘Jacob I loved but Esau I hated.’” On the one hand, we have God’s choice of Jacob, but on the other hand we have Jacob manipulating the circumstances to fit into God’s choice. We see Jacob as a deceiver and manipulator, who stole both Esau’s birthright and blessing, yet this discussion is not about destiny but pre-destiny, that is, not about man’s choice but God’s choice. God chose a conniving deceiver over the son whom Isaac loved. 

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11 for though the twins were not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, so that God's purpose according to His choice would stand, not because of works but because of Him who calls,

 

Rom 9,11-26

(220b) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> Predestination >> Predestined according to the sovereignty of God -- I admit that I am not an authority on the subject of predestination, but what limited wisdom I have is summed up in this statement: God chooses us as we choose ourselves. Some people have a problem with the doctrine of predestination (and rightfully so, because it is a very complex and difficult subject). The best advise I can give is to keep in mind that although God knows the end from the beginning and at times predestines us to make our decisions, we no less have a free will. The ones who have the greatest problem with this topic view predestination as nullifying our will, when in fact that is simply not true, especially when you consider that we are predestined according to His foreknowledge; that is, God in not making us do anything; He simply knows what we are going to do before we do it, but it is still us making those decisions. Some will say, 'If God knew certain people would not accept Him and they were ultimately predestined for hell, then why did God make them at all?,' and from there they would actually accuse God of sin! My answer is this: And who are you to tell God what He can and cannot do; who are you to tell God who He can and cannot make? Perhaps God has a purpose for hell, such as using it as a reminder throughout eternity and as an example of the depth of evil and the sorrow of sin. If there were only two things we didn't understand about God, they would be infinity and eternity, because of our immense limitations. We had a beginning and have an end in this life. It is these two things that greatly limit our view of God and His overwhelming wisdom, and for these reasons, we should not jump to any conclusions until we actually meet Him face to face. After they meet God, if some still think He is evil, I think they should embrace that thought, while the rest of us understand His heart and enjoy His company and His creation forever. Thank you Jesus for the eternal lesson of the perils of sin. 

Rom 9,11-23

(19e) Sin >> Mocking God Without a cause >> Under uncontrollable circumstances – Egypt placed Israel in bondage to slavery because they were afraid of the Israelites. God was blessing them and they were increasing in number faster than the Egyptians, so they oppressed them as a preemptive measure to make them fear the Egyptians. God wanted the Egyptians to be deserving of their punishment for enslaving His chosen people, and the way He did that was to harden pharaoh’s heart so he would sin more and deserve a harsher punishment, until God’s fierce wrath was completely spent. There were things happening underneath the surface of pharaoh’s hardened heart. Although God may have hardened his heart before he was even born, still it was the actions of pharaoh that were the physical expression of his own heart. That is, it’s one thing for God to harden pharaoh’s heart, but quite another for him to respond with contempt to the miracles of Moses. Pharaoh did all these things that were written in Scripture, but had he been kind to Israel, he would have overridden God hardening his heart, but Paul was making the point that we cannot override God’s sovereignty, but that does not take away from the fact that pharaoh sinned against the children of Israel. Think of it this way, predestination is the flipside of God’s refusal to tamper with man's will. Think of it another way, endtime prophecy is predestined to occur, but this is not about God causing things to happen that are written, but was simply written in advance. Likewise, all the actions of pharaoh were the result of his pride and massive ego, which beckoned the judgment of God, so it was pharaoh’s fault; it was his sin. God did not make pharaoh do anything, but he sinned on his own volition. In other words, the hardening of pharaoh’s heart was not an act of God, but an act of His foreknowledge; God simply knew he would respond this way, and so He waited almost four hundred years for pharaoh to be born and then judged him for the entire duration of Israel’s slavery.

(94g) Thy kingdom come >> God’s perspective >> His perspective on the sovereignty of God 2Pet 3-9 says, “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” How does this verse fit with the popular tenets of predestination? There are two divine perspectives occurring at the same time (plus our own point of view making three): God knows the end from the beginning, but chooses not to work with humanity in this way. Paul’s main point is that human and divine perspectives are happening at the same time and they are equally important, but one takes precedence over the other. It is like the trinity where the Father knows everything from the beginning, predestining all things to occur. Authority flows from the Father through Christ to the Holy Spirit and ultimately throughout His entire creation. The Holy Spirit does not know more than Christ. For example, in Mat 24-36 it says, ""But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone." Therefore, the Holy Spirit deals with us apart from the Father's foreknowledge, though the spirit of prophecy is disseminated as the need arises. Finally, Jesus represents the human perspective.  

(108e) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Balance >> God's sovereignty balances good from evil – Are we really going to enjoy heaven more because of hell? Paul really opened up a can of worms in this chapter! We may be more appreciative of heaven because there is a hell, but what we need to understand is that sin exists apart from God creating it, suggesting there really is a mystery of lawless at work, and the reason it is a mystery is that we cannot understand it. When the ultimate goal is absolute freedom, God is not able to get rid of sin any other way than to let us experiment with it, like picking up a lit stick of dynamite and then setting it down before it explodes. God could have made creatures that were incapable of sin, but then they would not have been able to comprehend His righteousness, which is one of His most prized possessions. We were made to have a relationship with God, and this ironically is why mankind is capable of sin, because to know Him is to know His attributes, but how could we know righteousness without knowing unrighteousness? Sin is defined as trading our relationship with God for something else, because it has the effect of limiting our ability to relate to Him.

(184d) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Darkness >> God controls darkness >> God hides unbelief in darkness

(213i) Sovereignty >> God is infinite >> Jesus owns you >> His will becomes our will >> We are God’s property God has predestined every man and woman to heaven or hell, implying that God knew beforehand that millions of souls would not make it to heaven, so they accuse God of being evil for sending many to the eternal flames of hell, where the fire is not quenched and their worm does not die (Mk 9-44). In sharp contrast, man has made his own choices that have led him to either heaven or hell. Essentially what it comes down to then is a simple statement: God chooses us as we choose ourselves. I gave my heart to Jesus on June sixteenth, 1979. Salvation is no different from marriage, for it is based on an oath, hence kneeling in a ditch next to my friend who had just been in a motorcycle accident praying for God to save me was no different from a wedding ceremony. Had I not experienced that moment or one like it, I could not have been saved. I literally felt His presence in my heart and since that day He never left, and He never will. Therefore, I had to make a commitment to follow Jesus in order for God’s choice of me to be complete.

(217b) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> God Is Independent Of His Creation >> No one can tell God what to do

(221k) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Kingdom hidden behind the veil from the world >> God hides from sin >> He hides behind unbelief

Rom 9-11

(91i) Thy kingdom come >> The called >> God’s calling transcends the will of man >> We are called by God through His choice of us -- This verse goes with verses 24&25

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12-16 it was said to her, "THE OLDER WILL SERVE THE YOUNGER." 13 Just as it is written, "JACOB I LOVED, BUT ESAU I HATED." 14 What shall we say then? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be! 15 For He says to Moses, "I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY, AND I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION." 16 So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who runs, but on God who has mercy. 

 

Rom 9-12,13

(151c) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> New Testament bears witness of the Old >> The Patriarchs >> The sons of Abraham – Jacob and Esau were brothers who were unlike each other in many ways. Esau was the eldest, though they were born twins (not identical), and it says that Jacob was holding Esau’s foot, illustrating that Jacob being second-born was a matter of perspective. Jacob would change all that by the things he did, and note that he wasn’t obeying the word of the Lord, but he acted purely on his own volition. However, from God’s perspective He had plans to turn the circumstances in Jacob’s favor before the foundation of the earth. As the story goes, Jacob made a pot of stew and Esau came home famished and considered himself as good as dead, coming to the opposite conclusion as his grandfather, Abraham, when he said  in Rom 4-19, “he contemplated his own body, now as good as dead since he was about a hundred years old,” yet hope against hope Abraham believed and became the father of many nations. In contrast to his father, Esau considered himself as only minutes from starving to death, and Jacob took advantage of the opportunity and demanded his birthright in exchange for a bowl of soup, and Esau gave it to him. Obviously Esau wasn’t able to literally give Jacob his birthright any more than he could un-ring a bell. However Esau could treat his birthright with contempt, which is what he did, and spiritually their birth order was indeed switched. Jacob demonstrated faith on his part to desire Esau’s birthright; he considered the position of firstborn significant as a custom originating from God as having authority over the family name, but this had nothing to do with inheriting the blessing; these were two distinct blessings. Abraham’s descendents didn’t receive the blessing from being firstborn; rather, the father spoke the blessing to his chosen son by an oath. Esau was an outdoorsman, a hunter and gatherer, a provider for the family. He loved to spend days, weeks and months in God’s wilderness by himself, communing with his version of God and had the smell of the outdoors on him. As much as Esau loved God’s creation, there was something missing in Esau; he just didn’t have a heart for God. He may have loved His creation; he loved the field and the song of the birds, the thrill of the hunt and the meat of wild animals, but he didn’t love God, by evidence that he gave up his birthright, an institution from God that the eldest son should be second in authority below his father, illustrated through the relationship between Christ with His Father. Being firstborn was highly valuable, but Esau gave it away for a bowl of soup, whereas Jacob considered it valuable because God said it was valuable, and when we think of it Esau was the first person in the nation of Israel who was considered firstborn. Isaac wasn’t firstborn; he was an only child. Jacob was the first-firstborn, but he stole that right, and it was this respect for the things of God that led to Jacob’s status as God’s first-choice. It was irrelevant to God that Isaac loved Esau better; God had his own value system, and he deemed certain things important that would remain true throughout all time, and Jacob sought to fit into it. He wanted to become firstborn because God said it was meaningful, and he was apparently jealous of Esau, coveting his birth order. When it says that God loved Jacob and hated Esau, it doesn’t really mean that he hated Esau, but elucidating the fact that God doesn’t particularly like anything or anybody; he either loves or hates and there is nothing in-between. God feels very strongly about things. 

Rom 9,14-23

(41a) Judgment >> God glorifies Himself by being the judge of all

Rom 9,15-23

(186k) Works of the devil >> The result of lawlessness >> The reprobate >> God’s role in forming a reprobate >> Rejected by God

Rom 9,15-17

(142c) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> Prophesy about evangelism

Rom 9-16

(31k) Gift of God >> Gift of His grace >> Grace is the work of God -- This verse goes with verses 22&23

(82b) Thy kingdom come >> Three elements of prayer >> Direction (Attitude) >> What not to pray for

(116k) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> His Grace in us is in vain without Him Theologians have taken man's will from the equation of predestination since John Calvin expounded his beliefs in the mid-to-late fifteen hundreds. His contribution to Christian theology was a travesty, single-handedly emasculating the protestant church probably more than anyone else before or after him, causing many to lose faith because of his irresponsible doctrines and theology, but a more accurate view, that of Jacobus Arminius (Arminianism), whose influence came a few decades later, brings the human element back into focus and thus brings balance to the subject of predestination. We can partially ascribe blame to Calvinism for the current apostasy, since he has removed the human will from salvation, causing passivity in people’s hearts who have adopted the attitude that their salvation and walk with God is not up to them but God to determine, seeing the human will as not all that important to the process of salvation. Calvinism at its core is utterly wrong in its thinking, and has thus done Christianity a grave disservice. In contrast to Calvinism, God completely involves our will when we are saved, even though we may be predestined to do so from the foundation of the world. Calvin was not entirely wrong in some of his views, dubbing it “the paradox of free will.” However, it is only a paradox when we separate the will of God from the will of man. Rather, there is an amalgamation between the will of God and the will of man, suggesting there is no paradox between them, only apart from each other.

(171b) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Outward appearance >> Vanity >> Vain effort >> Vain attempt to pursue God

(173l) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Man’s Religion >> Deeds that are not initiated by God >> Deeds that are not initiated by the Holy Spirit

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17-21 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP, TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU, AND THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH." 18 So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires. 19 You will say to me then, "Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?" 20 On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? The thing molded will not say to the molder, "Why did you make me like this," will it? 21 Or does not the potter have a right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for common use? 

 

Rom 9,17-23

(49c) Judgment >> Enemies of God’s righteousness are destroyed

Rom 9,17-21

(213h) Sovereignty >> God is infinite >> Jesus owns you >> We are his instruments >> We are clay in the potters hand

Rom 9-17

(27c) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> Condoning evil can bring a curse on your life – “Condoning evil can bring a curse on your life” is the topic, so who was condoning evil in this case? It was God! For 300 years Egypt was free to oppress the children of Israel, building up a mountain of sin that God would eventually judge with far greater severity than had He immediately corrected the nation. Had Israel become dependent on Egypt and offered themselves as slaves, that would have been one thing, but Egypt made them slaves from jealousy and fear that they were becoming more numerous than the Egyptians. For this reason Egypt mistreated the Israelites while God ratcheted up Egypt’s judgment before He unleashed it on them. It says that pharaoh was about to let the Israelites go, and then God hardened his heart, incurring more condemnation on the Egyptians, so God could judge them to the severity that they deserved. In the process, God was also creating the condition of Israel’s heart, forcing His people to believe in Him under great opposition for a long time, until they too became hardened, so when God finally did show-up, it was impossible to turn their hardness of heart into faith as their fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob walked. In the meantime, God was also waiting for the land of Canaan to become utterly corrupt so they would become worthy of His judgment when He was ready to use Israel as His hammer to purge the land of their sin. So, if we wanted to make a lesson of this, it might be that if God does not judge our sin right away, or the sin of a nation, it might not mean that he fancies us, but He could be waiting for us to ratchet up our sin for the Day of Judgment.

(246g) Kingdom of God >> Spirit realm imposed on the natural realm >> Demonstration of God’s kingdom >> God demonstrates His glory >> Demonstration of His power -- This verse goes with verse 22

Rom 9,18-23

(202k) Denying Christ >> Running from God >> Wicked men cannot approach the throne of God >> Goats are unsaved church attendants – If God were to come and try to tell us what to do, it would make us mad enough to want to kill Him, and some people complain that God never visits us, so He’s damned if He does and damned if He doesn’t. If Jesus returned in the flesh, we would want Him to do whatever we told Him as our only terms of acceptance. In other words, we would want to control God, because man likes to control everything, except himself. It is written in the Bible everything God would have us do and people hate it; how much more would they hate God visiting our planet and telling us what to do in person? The question was, “Who resists His will?” and the answer is everybody on every level imaginable. No matter what God does He is wrong in the eyes of unbelievers. There is nothing God can do to please them. If he returned, they would be furious; if He doesn’t return, they would despise Him, so no matter what He does man resists His will, so God just does what He wants. He doesn’t worry what man thinks of Him, knowing that sinful flesh is impossible to please, so He has mercy on whom He desires and hardens whom He desires; that way nobody resists His will.

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Rom 9,18-21

(154b) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> God bears witness against the world >> No excuse >> There is no excuse for rejecting the Father – Paul answers this question in later verses, “You will say to me then, ‘Why does He still find fault? For who resists His will?’” but for now he rebukes the man for his ignorance saying, “On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God?” Paul is saying for now, ‘You don’t get to know the answer, though I am going to tell you.’ Man resists God in the very questions he asks about resisting His will, like a criminal going to court about a crime he has committed and is obviously guilty, having overwhelming proof of it. The judge hands down the verdict and the criminal sasses him right on his bench. God bypasses the sinner’s will just to end the case; otherwise He would spend the whole day dickering with this one sinner. If God endues man’s railing against His sovereign authority over the millennia, He will certainly not put up with him at the judgment.

Rom 9-18

(185g) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Mystery of lawlessness >> God helps Satan in the mystery of lawlessness

(231d) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> God’s grace is the mystery of godliness >> Having favor with God is a mystery

Rom 9,19-21

(75e) Thy kingdom come >> Motives >> Being manipulative >> Questioning God’s judgment – Paul is finally adding the human element into the equation, because it does in fact exist in the subject of predestination, even though many would say it does not. If it didn’t, God could not have judged pharaoh, but what pharaoh did was his own doing; God did not make him do anything. Paul’s simple answer to the conundrum of being unable to resist God’s will was, “On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God?” Wasn’t the question itself resisting with will of God? To question God’s judgment is irreverent, showing a lack of faith and trust in one of His core attributes; nevertheless, it is a valid question if a person asks with a good heart. A good example of questioning God is found in the difference between Mary’s question, the mother of Jesus, and of Zacharias’, the father of John the Baptist. Mary asked the angel, “How could these things be?” while Zacharias asked, “How will I know for sure?” They sound very much the same but they’re not, for one was asking as it were a science question, how Mary could get pregnant if she hadn’t known a man?” while the other was blatantly doubting the word of God, showing contempt for the angel who was speaking with him. The angel answered Zacharias, ‘I stand in the presence of God; who are you to question my authority?’ Paul’s question was, why did God find fault with pharaoh after He hardened his heart? That is, why would God get mad at him for expressing the hardness that God put in his heart? Answer, the human will was involved. We cannot extract the human element from the equation and expect to maintain balance or arrive at the truth.

(96n) Thy kingdom come >> Having a negative attitude about sin >> Having a rebellious attitude

 

22 What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? 

 

Rom 9,22-29

(50dc) Judgment >> Last Days >> Jewish Led endtime revival >> Israel prophesied to restore the gentiles to salvation

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Rom 9-22,23

(31a) Gift of God >> God is our Father >> He favors the Church to spite the world

(31k) Gift of God >> Gift of His grace >> Grace is the work of God -- These verses go with verse 16

(33l) Gift of God >> Believers are special to God >> He has given us all things

(37a) Judgment >> The cross >> God judged the sin of the world through Christ – This is probably the most difficult passage in the Bible (Vs11-23), but if we can make sense of it, there is much to gain. By this we will begin to understand some of the deep things of God, such as His justice and sovereign authority over His creation. Subjects like this the Bible states is unsearchable (Rom 11-33), so we will by no means reach the bottom of it, but we will scrape the surface and develop an introduction to the personhood of God. That should be enough to get us through this life. Everything about God is an extension of his justice, including his love and even the cross. God loved us before the cross, but He had to sacrifice His Son for justice sake. Somebody had to pay for our sins, and He determined that person to be Himself. He wasn’t going to let us rebel against His authority and get by with it; He had to exact payment, otherwise the things we have done would have kept us from heaven. Jesus has paid the penalty for our sins; the judgment has been rendered, the sin covered and the issue resolved. All that remains between God and man is His love, and it says He loves us as much as He loves His Son, which itself is unfathomable.

(46i) Judgment >> Spiritual warfare >> Satan falls by his own wickedness – When Paul said that God has mercy on whom He desires and hardens whom He desires, and then asked the question, “Who resists His will?” he intentionally left out one important detail: the sin that man and angels have committed is their own. God did not create evil; evil created itself through willing agents, which led God to create the punishment of hell. He knew these things would come to pass from the beginning as the undesired results of creating living beings who are totally free. If he created beings that were not free, then evil would not exist. Therefore, evil is linked to freedom like the exhaust of a car, in that if we want a car we must have exhaust. God knew evil would result from His creation and that He would make a place for it to exist, still His foreknowledge did not create evil. God is absolutely perfect, and evil seeks to replace Him, and since perfection is already taken, evil must take the position of imperfection. God determined that if anything should seek to replace Him, it must take the opposite position of God, not just imperfection but the opposite of perfection. This is why evil is evil, and it is why evil always corrupts a person, a society and a nation. Evil is the opposite of God and God’s kingdom is predestined to succeed forever; therefore, whatever is created by evil must be destroyed by evil (See Rev 17-16,17).

(54k) Paradox >> Opposites >> Contrast of two natures – The yin-yang concept is validated by these verses. You can’t have light without darkness, and vise versa. God existed forever in righteousness without evil, but we need evil to comprehend the righteousness. To us light is a foreign concept; it must be contrasted with darkness for us to appreciate it. Much as we may want to deny yin-yang, being a product of eastern religions, God can’t just tell His people that He has mercy on them without pitting it against its counterpart. We will be able to look into hell as through a portal and see the punishment of fallen angels and man, mentioned in Isaiah 66-24. God will point to them in hell and say to the redeemed, “This is what the absence of grace and mercy looks like.” If God did not have mercy on us we would be there too. Our salvation was paid for, not only by the blood of Jesus Christ, but also by the eternal damnation of hundreds of millions of people. Someone might look down on God and say that hell is really mean of Him; how could He conceptualize such a thing? Is He going to let all these people suffer forever and ever just to make a point? God says yes! That is His answer to us. That is exactly right. Hell completes the circle of God’s plan and purpose for mankind. Every man and woman who ever lived will either live with Christ in glory or showcase the absence of God’s mercy. Without hell we would not have a contrast for the grace and mercy we have been shown, and without contrast we couldn’t truly grasp the gift of God, how He feels about sin. Without knowing how He feels about sin, we would not understand how He fells about righteousness, justice and mercy. In other words, we wouldn’t have the capacity to know God. Over the eons of eternity, God will continue clarifying these things, so we may understand them as He does and can accept them. In this life, aspects of God’s truth seem coarse and abrupt. The only thing that really helps our understanding is the fact that those in hell have brought it on themselves. This particular standpoint seems difficult, because it tries to explain God’s sense of justice though it is incomprehensible. Paul didn’t delve any further into this, possibly because he reached his own limit or because he didn’t think it would help our understanding. We are simply to accept the facts for now, and God will bring the understanding as we are able to accept it.

(58d) Paradox >> Opposites >> God endures the lost for the sake of the elect – In these verses we see God experiencing both sides of this perspective, both the human and the divine, by choosing to endure those whom He had prepared for destruction. It is mankind that suffers; what does God endure? In light of eternity and infinity God does not endure or suffer anything, unless He limits Himself to the finite and the steady grind of time. When God deals with us on our level, He must endure us. Therefore, Paul is describing a God that experiences both the finite and the infinite at the same time, knowing the end from the beginning but also suffering with us and because of us. It says that He endures the lost for the sake of revealing the riches of his glory to His saints, suggesting that He couldn’t have revealed his glory without an opposite example, meaning that the lost serve a purpose in God’s future design of eternity. This refers to the yin-yang concept that describes how opposite forces work to harmonize their common parent system. Darkness is defined by light. Without darkness light would have no meaning, so God created vessels of destruction to better show His mercy. This way He can point at those in hell and say, ‘You are not down there with them because I chose you from the foundation of the world. You reside in heaven, not through any act of your will, but purely through My gracious choice of you.’ This will be the prevailing attitude that will stand the test of eternity; all our efforts to be saved in this life will pale in comparison to God’s predestined kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. There is no such thing as God predestining those to either heaven or hell without them responding appropriately, for they must respond according to the way they were predestined, yet what evil they do belongs to them and not to God. In contrast, God is the author of our good works.

(64c) Paradox >> Anomalies >> Limits of God >> God has limited patience – God certainly has the right to make common sinners and honorable believers from the same lump of dough. He will explain what uses they have in His overall plan of creation, which will answer his original question, “Who resists His will?” The term “vessels of wrath” defines common use, and it also explains His reason for having mercy on some and hardening others. Sinners consider it a small thing that God endures them. Although He is infinite in many ways, He is limited in patience, and for Him to endure the fallen state of rebellious human nature for thousands of years was a tremendous feat, perhaps one of God’s greatest achievements. The reason God’s patience is limited is that his sovereign lordship is infinite, which are opposites by definition, for to have infinite patience would undo his sovereignty. He allows himself a little patience, just enough to accomplish His objective, which is to create a people for His own possession who are zealous for good works (Tit 2-14). It takes patience to endure the sinner who hates God and speaks evil of Him every day in His very presence, though they are unaware of Him. This occurs around the globe, millions of people day and night for thousands of years railing against His throne. He is not being patient for their own sake, but for the sake of the elect. He intends to use sinners throughout eternity after He judges them to be tormented day and night by the fires of their own conscience. Hell is the only place where they will recognize God’s sovereign authority over them. If He set them free, they might make a resolute promise to respect God’s sovereign authority, but they would inevitably revert to their rebellious ways that landed them in hell in the first place. God endures them in order to make known His riches and glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory.

(126i) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Patience >> The patience of God >> God is patient

Rom 9-22

(20k) Sin >> Disobedience >> Rejecting the word

(47d) Judgment >> God Judges the world >> Hell is a place of destruction

(224k) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Description of heaven >> The people of heaven >> Traits of people who don’t make it to heaven

(246g) Kingdom of God >> Spirit realm imposed on the natural realm >> Demonstration of God’s kingdom >> God demonstrates His glory >> Demonstration of His power -- This verse goes with verse 17

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23-33 And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory, 24 even us, whom He also called, not from among Jews only, but also from among Gentiles. 25 As He says also in Hosea, "I WILL CALL THOSE WHO WERE NOT MY PEOPLE, 'MY PEOPLE,' AND HER WHO WAS NOT BELOVED, 'BELOVED.' " 26 "AND IT SHALL BE THAT IN THE PLACE WHERE IT WAS SAID TO THEM, 'YOU ARE NOT MY PEOPLE,' THERE THEY SHALL BE CALLED SONS OF THE LIVING GOD." 27 Isaiah cries out concerning Israel, "THOUGH THE NUMBER OF THE SONS OF ISRAEL BE LIKE THE SAND OF THE SEA, IT IS THE REMNANT THAT WILL BE SAVED; 28 FOR THE LORD WILL EXECUTE HIS WORD ON THE EARTH, THOROUGHLY AND QUICKLY." 29 And just as Isaiah foretold, "UNLESS THE LORD OF SABAOTH HAD LEFT TO US A POSTERITY, WE WOULD HAVE BECOME LIKE SODOM, AND WOULD HAVE RESEMBLED GOMORRAH." 30 What shall we say then? That Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, attained righteousness, even the righteousness which is by faith; 31 but Israel, pursuing a law of righteousness, did not arrive at that law. 32 Why ? Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as though it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone, 33 just as it is written, "BEHOLD, I LAY IN ZION A STONE OF STUMBLING AND A ROCK OF OFFENSE, AND HE WHO BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED."

 

Rom 9-23

(224i) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Description of heaven >> The people of heaven >> Traits of the people who make it to heaven

Rom 9,24-29

(142b) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> Prophesy about the dispensation >> Gentiles are included – These verses show even more the distinction between the will of man and the will of God, who has chosen the gentiles over Israel through their disobedience, with the gentiles receiving Him. They have been, prophesied, hence predestined to become the children of God by responding to the call. Prophecy was also spoken over Israel, thus they were predestined, to reject the gospel of Christ. So does that mean God wanted Israel to reject Him? No, but He knew they would, thus reducing predestination to mere foreknowledge. In this chapter we see Paul personifying the foreknowledge of God when he speaks of God’s choice. He simply knows what will happen from the beginning, but did not force Israel to reject Him. God will never violate the free will of man, hence the reason for all the problems of the world. He has prepared a place of destruction for those who exercise their free will against Him, and He has prepared a place in heaven for those who will receive Him. God knows those who are His own, based on his foreknowledge, and Paul is in a way personifying this whole process, as though saying that He causes people to do what they do by choosing certain people to be His children and choosing others as vessels of destruction. There are other passages of Scripture that do not fit nicely into this personification of foreknowledge that we call predestination. If it were simply up to man Israel would have destroyed itself long ago. Not only did God by his own authority create Israel, but He also by His authority preserved them from their own destruction. There were times in Israel’s past when they were nearly as bad as Sodom and Gomorrah and deserved their judgment, yet they are still here by God’s choice. So we have the will of God and the will of man, two distinct and often opposite entities, the will of God who wills for man to obey Him, and the will of man who disobeys Him. We also have the will of God who predestines man to behave a certain way, and the will of man who completes God’s choice.

Rom 9-24,25

(91i) Thy kingdom come >> The called >> God’s calling transcends the will of man >> We are called by God through His choice of us -- These verses go with verse 11

Rom 9-27

(92g) Thy kingdom come >> The narrow way >> What kind of trail is this? >> Gate is small and few are those who find it

Rom 9-28

(40i) Judgment of Christ >> God’s word executes judgment by the Spirit

Rom 9-29

(120f) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Forgiveness >> Forgiveness is an act of mercy >> God passes over our sins

Rom 9,30-33

(41fc) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Righteousness of

(176d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Zeal without knowledge (Spirit w/o the word) >> Conviction without commandment

(201h) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Jesus is an offense >> Jesus offends the world >> Faith offends unbelief

(205j) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith is the law of righteousness

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Rom 9,30-32

(58d) Paradox >> Opposites >> Gentiles seek wisdom, but the Jews have it; Jews seek righteousness, but the Gentiles have it – The gentiles who did not pursue God has attained Him, and God has made a church from them in the same way that God pursued Abraham and created a nation from him. The Jews after Moses strived after the law, but they failed to understand their relation to God, which is in the likeness of their father, Abraham. Not only is man unable to please God through the law, but Israel failed miserably to achieve even a semblance of it. By rejecting Christ they fell over the stumbling stone, causing a role reversal between the Jews and gentiles, who are now controlling the oracle of God, and failing just as miserably as the Jews in keeping the doctrines of the Church pure along with their behavior. Israel’s disobedience over the centuries has led them to reject their own Messiah, which led God to pursue the gentiles. Now, instead of the Jews leading the gentiles into a relationship with God by faith, the Jews need to be restored by faith in their own Messiah. The gentiles are not able to restore the Jews, who have not been given such a ministry from God, for it is like the child telling the parents what to do; it is not their place. It has always been Israel’s place to lead the gentiles in things pertaining to God, so when Israel failed, only God can restore them, and God will do so according to his own predestined plan, for He has prepared a time when Israel will be restored, but until then, Israel will continue to flounder.

Rom 9-33

(142a) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> Prophesy about the dispensation >> The end times – Much of the Bible is prophetic, and much of the prophetic word of God is meant for the endtimes, so a large percentage of Scripture is devoted to our generation, which to date is closer to the last days than any generation before us.

 

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Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible ® (NASB), Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.Lockman.org

 

ROMANS CHAPTER 10

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1-3 Brethren, my heart's desire and my prayer to God for them is for their salvation. 2 For I testify about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge. 3 For not knowing about God's righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God.

 

Rom 10-1

(210i) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Salvation is from the Jews >> Jews are believers >> Gospel belongs to the Jew first – Paul is talking about the Israelites again. Israel is too ashamed to believe in Jesus and are unwilling to accept the fact that they crucified their own Messiah, but they need to understand that they did these things not only to free mankind from their sins, but also to demonstrate just how deep sin goes into the human soul. It is truly a shame that Israel went through all the hardships they did over the millennia only to abandon the salvation that they suffered to achieve for the rest of the whole world. God has not forsaken them, but they opted from His salvation by their own volition. They determined in their own minds that they didn’t want Jesus. They didn’t like the thought of being manipulated by God, but let’s face it; that is really what happened. Being so screwed-up they crucified their own Messiah, but God knew they would do it. Israel needs to understand that if God called anybody else to be His witness nation of His glory and power, they would have done the same thing, because we are all sinners.

(247h) Priorities >> God’s priorities >> God’s interests >> God is interested in the gospel Man has underestimated the curse from the very beginning of time. We have serial killers that try to show us how deep the curse really extends into the human heart. In addition, we have World War I and II behind us testifying against our lust for violence, yet we are still unwilling to believe the full scope of our depravity. We still think we are good people; we still think there is something salvageable about us without God having to send His Son to die for our sins, but it is simply not true. We are depraved from the inside-out. Paul said, “I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh” (Rom 7-18), meaning that the Spirit of God was willing to dwell in him, but apart from that nothing else in him was good. We can point to many good works that Paul said and did, but it was because of the Spirit of God who dwelled in him that he said and did those things. 

Rom 10,2-10

(205j) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith is the law of righteousness We could almost say that without Paul’s input none of us would truly understand the gospel. He made it absolutely clear that our works do not save us. Paul separated faith from works to show that faith is the active ingredient to our salvation, and the good works that follow merely act as evidence of God’s indwelling Holy Spirit. John went one step further and said that without evidence, our salvation is in question, and James set the capstone on the meaning or our works, saying that without evidence, our salvation isn’t real, that we are just fooling ourselves. Although it is imperative to bring evidence to the table of salvation, it is our faith that God uses to save us.

Rom 10,2-5

(1h) Responsibility >> Avoid offending God >> False burden >> Serving God in ignorance >> Not knowing His will – What should the Jews have known about God’s righteousness? We know that it is about faith in Jesus Christ, but what about God’s old covenant righteousness for the Jew before Jesus came? The answer is in the example of Abraham. Paul spoke extensively about him in some of the earlier chapters of Romans, but spoke very little about Moses, because justification is better understood through Abraham. Nevertheless, the Jews had utterly fixated on the person and ministry of Moses, thus overlooking the foundation of their relation to God as seen through the founder of their nation, which was by faith and expressed through Abraham. He was the father of every Jewish patriarch, yet they seemed to have forgotten about him. God’s righteousness for Israel was to live according to the example of Abraham, who believed by obeying the voice of God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.

(21e) Sin >> Disobedience does not understand God – Referring to the Jew, their zeal was well in place, but their knowledge of the Old Testament was completely skewed. In the days of the Old Testament God did not speak to every man like He promises His children of the new covenant, and for this reason God sent them prophets, who spoke the word of God to Israel. They were expected to obey them as they would obey God to model after their father Abraham, who heard the voice of God just like Israel heard the voice of the prophets. Abraham believed the word of God and did what was commanded of him, but Israel did not do that, and their disobedience over the centuries led them to crucify their own Messiah.

(175l) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Ignorance >> Lack of knowledge

(199b) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Frustrating the grace of God >> Frustrating Jesus >> Frustrating the Father -- These verses go with verse 16

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Rom 10,2-4

(41h) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Seek His righteousness – The righteousness of God is through faith in Jesus Christ; it is the same kind of faith that Abraham had. God spoke to him and said, ‘Abraham, go to a foreign land and live among foreign people, and abandon your family, taking only your wife and possessions, and there I will make you a father of many nations.’ That was a big thing to ask; believing in Jesus is a big thing to ask; Abraham agreed to it, and so should we. He did the will of God, thinking that he would benefit from this more than if he stayed home and lived among his relatives, and he was right, not because he became very wealthy in the land of Canaan where he went, but because his wealth went far beyond cattle, referring to his descendants that would come after him that could not be numbered for abundance. All these things happened because he followed the voice of God; none of these things would have come to pass had he disobeyed and ignored the Spirit who spoke to him. Had he disobeyed, he would have died an obscure man, but as it is, everybody knows about Abraham because of his faith. Believing in Jesus is no different. Jesus talked about the Holy Spirit as the wind; we hear the sound of it, but don’t know where it comes from and where it is going (Jn 3-8). Wherever He goes, we must follow, and the very first thing He will lead us to do is believe in Jesus and be born-again. The Holy Spirit will mix with our spirit to become one spirit with Him; this is the righteousness of God. Righteousness is not about doing good works to appease Him. 

(174d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Form of godliness >> Self righteousness >> Trying to please God by your own good works – The person who seeks his own righteousness apart from faith in Christ is trying to avoid surrendering his will to Christ. Most people have a will of their own, many have their whole lives on a schedule that they had planned from their youth. They know what they want to do, like James said, “Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit. Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If the Lord wills, we will live and also do this or that.’ But as it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil.” (Jm 4,13-16). This is the bottom line, people want to reserve their will to do what they want, regardless of God’s will for them. This is the height of arrogance as John said, “The lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world” (1Jn 2-16). This suggests that pride is even more evil than the love of money if that were possible. It is human pride that people want to preserve, that which Jesus is trying to root out of us. He wants us to be humble and gentle of spirit, and act like children, trusting in Him. He doesn't want us accumulating a junk-drawer full of good works that we intend to bring to the judgment in effort to appease Him. Something important as our eternal future we don’t give the least concern. Most people shoot from the hip in answer to the question about God, a very insufficient search for truth.

(176c) Zeal Without Knowledge (Key verse) – Gal 3,1-3 says, "You foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?" The Galatians got ahead of themselves in the their zeal for the things of God. They went beyond their anointing by simulating it through the flesh, because of their lack of knowledge in the word. They wanted to walk in the spirit, but they didn't know how and couldn't admit that they were limited in knowledge, so they went on walking in their zeal without direction. Zeal without knowledge yields chaos, as knowledge without zeal yields arrogance. When we have both in equal portions, they balance each other. However, balance does not come naturally. For example, Half the Church focuses on salvation and ignores the power of God, while the other half focuses on power but hardly knows anything about salvation. On the one hand there are only saved people and on the other are hardly saved people, and almost nothing in between. The balance comes in learning from each other, which will cause us to unite that we may gracefully step into the power of God together.

(176d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Zeal without knowledge (Spirit w/o the word) >> Conviction without commandment – The Jews in Jesus' day did not pay attention to their own doctrines (1Tim 4-16), and over the centuries they mutated into heresy, yet their zeal continued to increase. Actually, their zeal was not typical of Jewish history; they were mostly apathetic and complacent. Jewish zeal started sometime after the deportation to Babylon, which caused a so-called enlightenment, but did not stir them to seek the truth, perhaps as though zeal itself somehow granted them the truth. After returning from Babylon and repossessing their nation for the next 400 years, claiming to have learned their lesson, they thought they were healed from the evil ways of their fathers, until Christ came and showed them that they were still not serving the Lord in their hearts and ended up crucifying their own Messiah. They allowed God’s truth to mutate into areas of heresy and deception, until all they really had was zeal, which became their new religion. What they believed didn’t matter anymore, only how strongly they believed it, but Paul said that what they believed was just as important as how strongly they believed it. They used their zeal to establish their own righteousness, so in their minds the stronger they believed the more righteous they were, but in the process they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. People can be zealous, but if they don’t use their zeal to obey God’s word, they are delinquent in regard to the truth and found by God to be still in their sin. We can worship God by only one religion at a time (Lk 16-13), for an assertion of knowing the truth is intrinsic within all religions. They did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God, because they were too busy worshipping their own zeal.

(181a) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Rebellion >> Rebelling against God >> Rebelling against the authority of God – This speaks of the Jew saying that in his day many of them did not seek the righteousness of God, but sought their own righteousness based on the law. They thought if they followed the law, they would find favor with God, but this thought was in error from the very beginning. God didn’t give the law to Moses for justification purposes. Israel began with Abraham as the father of our faith. God called Abraham over six centuries before He gave the law to Moses, and since then the Jews have distorted their Old Testament writings, saying that following the law finds favor with God. It is probably something that is sown into the human genome, since gentiles feel the same way, that if they do good, God will accept them. There is a problem with that, though; if the opportunity to believe in Jesus is available and we don’t take it, then how are we seeking the righteousness of God? Faith in Jesus discriminates the person seeking righteousness from the person seeking a mere religion. Making a commitment to faith in Jesus is the first act of righteousness, and all other righteousness is through Christ, in that faith sanctifies our good works. This way we are not seeking God by our own authority but by His.

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4-7 For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. 5 For Moses writes that the man who practices the righteousness which is based on law shall live by that righteousness. 6 But the righteousness based on faith speaks as follows: "DO NOT SAY IN YOUR HEART, 'WHO WILL ASCEND INTO HEAVEN?' (that is, to bring Christ down ), 7 or 'WHO WILL DESCEND INTO THE ABYSS?' (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead)."

 

Rom 10-4

(44e) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Transformed >> Completed by God – Christ is the definition of God’s righteousness, whose cross was the predetermined plan of God, who sacrificed His Son through the hands of sinners. We who are unrighteous can look to this sacrifice of the only righteous man who ever lived as the propitiation for our sins, so that everyone who believes in Him adopts His righteousness as their own to be completely forgiven of all their sin. Jesus is the righteousness of God, the fulfillment of the law, which the Jews could not see then and still cannot see, but a day is coming when they will one day open their eyes to this sacrifice and take advantage of God’s grace and mercy through Christ.

Rom 10-5

(151d) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> New Testament bears witness of the Old >> The Patriarchs >> Moses – They forgot about Abraham because they were not like him. God wanted to create a nation of people who lived just like Abraham who would listen to His word. Abraham is associated with obeying God’s voice, whereas Moses is associated with obeying his laws; there is a difference. Moses was the greatest prophet Israel ever had; he was no doubt the greatest man who ever lived (besides the Lord), who brought the law, which is very tangible and makes good sense to the logical mind, being a laundry list of dos and don’ts designed to regulate behavior. This appeals to the mind, whereas faith is nebulous and vague by comparison. Since Israel did not establish a culture of obedience to God’s word, they conveniently forgot about Abraham and fixated on Moses, but didn’t do what he said either, all the while believing in their hearts that if they were alive in Moses day, they would have been his staunchest supporters, but they disproved their own hearts by crucifying the Lord of glory. This Moses would not have done. This is all in the gospel of John chapter eight, only speaking about Abraham, where Jesus told the Jews point blank everything that was in their darkened hearts. 

(173i) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Catholicism >> Unholy sacrifice >> Penance of following the law (Legalism) – Moses’ statement was one of defiance against anyone who would disobey God’s laws or seek to be justified by them. Both are equally evil in the sight of God.

Rom 10,6-8

(71k) Authority >> Ordained by God >> We have His seal – No one has the authority to condemn anybody to hell or to approve anyone to heaven. Paul said in 2Tim 2-19, “Nevertheless, the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, ‘The Lord knows those who are His,’ and, ‘Everyone who names the name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness.’” This suggests that no one but God knows exactly who are the children of God. We have evidence, but no solid proof regarding the true identity of our brothers and sisters in Christ, and for this reason we should not stand on our judgment either way. To claim that someone is going to heaven is to bring Christ down, that is, to minimize the significance of Jesus' sacrifice for sin, for we don’t know all that was involved in purchasing our forgiveness through His cross. Likewise, to assume that someone is going to hell is underestimating the power of the cross to set the captives free, treating His sacrifice as though insufficient and people as though Jesus never died for their sins. Paul is saying that the righteousness of faith does not pass judgment on anyone regarding their eternal destiny. It is crucial to know who are the true saints, and this will become especially true as the days grow darker and the hour draws nearer to Christ’s return, for the hour will reveal them.

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8&9 But what does it say? "THE WORD IS NEAR YOU, in your mouth and in your heart "-that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;

 

Rom 10,8-13

(85i) Thy kingdom come >> Words of your mouth >> That are spoken in faith >> Will justify you – Paul paints a very simple picture of salvation, which it is, just like little children can believe in Jesus and be saved, and they can go tell all their little friends about Jesus and their salvation will be complete. Our confession erases any doubt whether we have actually obtained the righteousness of God through faith, and it also ensures free advertisement to the Kingdom of God, also guaranteeing that the work of God is not done in a corner. Salvation is not difficult, except that we like to complicate everything, asking silly, stupid questions like, ‘We are not children anymore; life is more complicated than this!’ Actually, it isn’t. Life is not more complicated; rather, it is sin that complicates life, so if we get rid of sin, then we get rid of the complications of life, and the only real sin that is the root of all other sin is unbelief, which is the very opposite of the faith we claim to believe.

(150cb) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness to Jesus >> Confessing Jesus There is not a long, drawn-out theology to simple faith in Jesus Christ. The only person to add to the gospel was James, who basically warned us to make sure that our faith rose above mental ascent, a frame of mind that allows the unbeliever to think he really believes when in fact he doesn’t, mental calisthenics, an exercise in futility. When we think how simple is faith in a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, it makes us wonder if it really is just that easy, why everyone isn't saved. Ask someone who doesn't believe to confess Jesus as Lord and really believe in his heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, and we will discover just how hard it is for some people to be saved. In fact, we make faith look so simple that they mock us for it. God made it easy on purpose, because He wants many people in His heaven, and if he made it any harder, virtually no one would be getting saved. KISS: Keep It Simple Stupid, applies here. The gospel is something a little five-year-old child can understand; in fact, they have some of the strongest faith of anyone; they simply believe. The faith of a child is not based on ignorance; rather, it is a God-given ability that many later trade for the unrighteous mammon. Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, unless you are converted and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven” (Mat 18-3), so God made His gospel very simple. We shouldn’t judge who is going to heaven and who isn't, because the process is so simple it is deceptive, being almost impossible for us to know for sure who really believes.

(230j) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> Mystery of the trinity >> Word of God is the mystery godliness

Rom 10,8-11

(74d) Thy kingdom come >> The heart >> The heart is the location of man's truth

Rom 10-8

(107c) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Hearing from God >> Word of God creates faith -- This verse goes with verse 17. To have faith in anything but the truth is no faith at all. Faith without truth is only zeal, but faith with the truth produces the anointing in each person who believes in the truth. 

Rom 10,9-11

(86b) Thy kingdom come >> Belief >> Treating the knowledge of God as fact >> Believing is the result of the resurrection When we get saved, God expects us to conform to the image of His Son, and if our faith is not leading us there, then it is time to question the veracity of our faith. It is according to the saying, ‘Those who believe obey, and those who obey believe.’ Paul was teaching in these verses that if we really believe in our hearts that God raised Jesus from the dead, it would change our lives. Salvation on its face is the simplest thing in the world, but because of our sinful nature and all our ambitions, ambivalence and anxieties, fitting the gospel into our lives is not as simple as our faith, though it is part of it. Some people don’t think obedience is necessary; instead, we should just believe and continue with our lives as we were, but if God doesn’t change our lives, then what kind of God is He, but if He really is a life changing God, then why doesn’t He change the lives of those who claim to believe in Him? This is where James interrupts and asks, ‘Do you believe that God raised Jesus from the dead? The demons also believe and shudder to think of it!’ (Jm 2-19). Keep in mind that Paul over the course of the book of Romans deliberately separated works from faith for the purpose of eliminating legalism from the gospel of Christ, but that does not mean works to not belong in our lives. Presenting the gospel in this way he opened the door to licentiousness, the root word “license,” refers to having a license to sin. Paul considered it a reasonable risk so we would not fall into the same trap of the Jews, who sought to pin their salvation on their zeal, rather than on God through faith. Paul knew by example and by firsthand experience the destructive force of legalism, but he would not think any higher of the apostasy in which the Church is currently sinking, cause by removing obedience from our beliefs.

Rom 10-9,10

(156i) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of salvation >> Confessing Jesus is evidence of salvation – There is a difference between righteousness and salvation. The righteousness of God is how we relate to Him, whereas salvation is how we relate to the world. The Bible teaches that salvation is a lifelong process, that we are saved throughout our lives. Paul tells us in Phi 2-12 to “Work out your salvation with fear and trembling,” and this working out our salvation pertains to our confession of Christ in the world, being the opposite of denying Him. To deny the Lord, Jesus said in Mk 8-38, “Whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.” To deny Him is evidence that we are not saved, but confessing Jesus to the world is evidence of our salvation. Conversely, our faith is proof to God that we believe, but our faith proves nothing to men. We have already become saved in the mind of God simply by believing in Him, but our salvation is made complete when we can prove it in the natural realm by our confession of Christ to men. When the world sees that we are indeed saved, then our salvation is complete, otherwise if God is the only one who knows we are saved, then maybe we're not.

(205aa) Salvation >> Verses useful in evangelism

Rom 10-9

(39a) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death >> Resurrection of Jesus Christ

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10-16 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, "WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED." 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for "WHOEVER WILL CALL ON THE NAME OF THE LORD WILL BE SAVED." 14 How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? 15 How will they preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written, "HOW BEAUTIFUL ARE THE FEET OF THOSE WHO BRING GOOD NEWS OF GOOD THINGS!" 16 However, they did not all heed the good news; for Isaiah says, "LORD, WHO HAS BELIEVED OUR REPORT?" 17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

 

Rom 10-10 

(41f) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Righteousness of faith >> Saved by grace through faith

Rom 10,11-18

(142c) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> Prophesy about evangelism

Rom 10-11,12

(225b) Kingdom of God >> Illustrating the kingdom >> Description of heaven >> Equality in heaven

Rom 10-12

(35d) Gift of God >> God is willing to Give >> No partiality with God’s generosity

(51h) Judgment >> Judging the Church with the world >> No partiality among us with God

(210ib) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Salvation is from the Jews >> Jews are believers >> Jew and Gentile believers are one flock with one shepherd

Rom 10-14,15

(149g) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness to Jesus >> Evangelism >> Preaching the word to the world >> Sowing the seed – The word of God creates faith, and for this reason each child of God should be devoted to the word of God in creating and nurturing his own faith, and also as an evangelist promoting God’s word in the world. Paul is talking about his own ministry that he had conducted ever since his encounter with Jesus Christ on the road to Damascus, associating it with this discussion of our confession of faith, insinuating that everyone who is saved should be an evangelist in one form or another. We don’t all need to be like Paul and devote every waking moment to telling people about Jesus, but whatever ministry God gives us we should treat it as holy to the Lord and perform it to the best of our ability and expect results from God in completing it.

Rom 10,16-21

(202j) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Running from God >> Running from walking in faith >> Running from God through unbelief

(217f) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> God gives up on you >> After you refuse to comply

(223j) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Miss God >> Missing the train >> Miss the invitation from God – Jesus told his servants to round up as many servants as they could, and they said, ‘We have already done that;’ and He said, ‘Go into the highways and byways and invite the blind and lamb, whoever is willing and compel them to come that My house may be filled’ (Lk 14,16-21). The developed countries of the world have churches on just about every street corner; they are not exactly full, but people still go to church, though the people don’t seem to have much faith. Jesus asked in Lk 18-8, “When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?” This is a rhetorical question, and the answer is no. If Jesus returned and found faith on the earth, it would mean people were still getting saved, and there would be no reason for Him to return. He would just wait and fill up his house until the period of salvation ended and people lost their interest in God; then He would return. That is where we are today for the most part, and this is why people believe His return is imminent. We are standing on the precipice of the fulfillment of endtime prophecy.

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Rom 10-16

(19m) Sin >> Nature of sin >> Unwilling to believe >> Spirit of unbelief – This passage in the Old Testament has resembled a fluctuating continuum over the generations, depending on man’s acceptance of the gospel. Some generations have received it gladly while others have rejected it across-the-board with scarcely anybody getting saved. Jesus said about His own generation, “Lift up your eyes and look on the fields, that they are white for harvest” (Jn 4-35), referring to the onset of the gospel when many people got saved. Then there was the period of reformation when there was a burst of faith, and people clamored to the gospel again, and now we seem to have gone back to our old ways when almost no one wants to hear the good news and those who claim to believe are scarcely faithful. There might be a church full of people, but they don’t seem interested in their own faith, but just believe in a set of doctrines and come to church and socialize, and then go on their way as though they never believed. This is Christianity today in most cases. Jesus taught that when mankind no longer saw a need for God, the curtain would drop and the age of grace would close.

(199b) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Frustrating the grace of God >> Frustrating Jesus >> Frustrating the Father -- This verse goes with verses 2-5

Rom 10-17

(79i) Thy kingdom come >> Know the word >> Practice listening to God’s word >> The word you heard perfects God’s work in you – There have been whole faith movements that have risen from Romans chapter ten and established primarily on verse 17. It is good to get a revelation from God, which is the crux of some of these movements. Some have brought truth to the Church, while others have brought error, not paying attention to their teaching, as Paul said in 1Tim 4-16. They don’t weigh what they are teaching with the Scriptures, but instead make up doctrines as they go along, which is nothing better than what the Jews did and got off course with God, and in an end they lost their place and their nation. They were zealous yet without knowledge. Paul said that this is destructive. Zeal without knowledge is like a hammer without a project. Whatever we hit with it is probably not constructive but destroying something. God has given each of us a project (Eph 2-10), and instead of aimlessly beating on things with a hammer, we should be pounding nails and constructing the edifice of His purpose for our lives. We are supposed to take the faith that God has given us and build something with it, a ministry that has the power to heal people’s lives and to help them in their faith to believe in God.

(106j) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Hearing from God >> Means of hearing from God >> Through the Bible – Preachers often use this passage in their pulpits to encourage the people to read their Bibles that it might increase their faith. This is true at face value, but Paul is talking about something a little bit deeper. Faith comes by reading our Bibles, yet we have all known people who have extensively read their Bibles, and they hadn’t any more faith than those who were less committed to the Scriptures. Paul is not wrong in his assertion; rather, it is doubtful that the Church really knows the meaning of faith. We know in Heb 11-1 it says, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” We can get out our Bible dictionary and first look up “faith” and see if that does any good. Then we can look up “substance” from Heb 11-1, but typically Bible dictionaries don’t provide much insight, contrary to the promises of many. There is a huge population of Christians devoted to the faith, who rely heavily on Bible dictionaries and the like to aid them in understanding the Bible, though I personally have not found them to be useful, except a word concordance is indispensable for finding specific passages.

(107c) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Hearing from God >> Word of God creates faith -- This verse goes with verse 8. God wants us at some point to get beyond the words and understand faith the way the Bible teaches. Hebrews says it is a substance, and this substance comes from God; it is a gift as Jesus said of Himself, “The bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world,” just like it did on the Israelites. They would awaken from their tents and find manna everywhere. They would gather it and that would be their food for the day, and that is how they lived for forty years. Faith is not something we should lightly assume, because it is the very basis of our salvation. If we don’t understand the word of God by the Spirit, then we don’t understand it at all. This is what Paul is saying here. The Holy Spirit must be our teacher, just as Jesus said. If we let the Holy Spirit teach us the truth from God, then faith will grow in our hearts, but a person can read his Bible till he turns blue in the face and never understand it the way God intended.

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18-20 But I say, surely they have never heard, have they? Indeed they have; "THEIR VOICE HAS GONE OUT INTO ALL THE EARTH, AND THEIR WORDS TO THE ENDS OF THE WORLD." 19 But I say, surely Israel did not know, did they? First Moses says, "I WILL MAKE YOU JEALOUS BY THAT WHICH IS NOT A NATION, BY A NATION WITHOUT UNDERSTANDING WILL I ANGER 20 And Isaiah is very bold and says, "I WAS FOUND BY THOSE WHO DID NOT SEEK ME, I BECAME MANIFEST TO THOSE WHO DID NOT ASK FOR ME." 

 

Rom 10,18-21

(108c) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Balance >> Faith is the balance between truth and unbelief

Rom 10-18

(50d) Judgment >> Last Days >> Jewish Led endtime revival >> Jews lead the world into revival >> Leading the harvest at the end of the age – Remember what Jesus said regarding endtimes, “This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come” (Mat 24-14). Missionaries have been trying to fulfill this passage ever since Jesus said it in attempt to bring about the glorious age of Millennium. We know these things will happen in the last days, since this was the context in which He made this statement, and it will happen just prior to His return, perhaps 3½ years prior. This is in reference to the 144,000 Jewish witnesses, two of whom will be the Two Witnesses mentioned in Rev 11,1-14. These 144,000 Jews will establish a worldwide revival that reaches around the globe, and they will begin their preaching in the developed countries of the world and get very little response. Some will come to Christ but most of their preaching will fall to the ground with a thud. Then they will go to the undeveloped countries of the world and preach the gospel to them, and there they will get their response with billions of people coming to Christ. This is what Jesus indicated in his parable of the wedding feast in Mat 22,1-14. There will be a great ingathering just before He comes for his people, and the moment the Rapture occurs, He will take them to the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.

Rom 10,19-21

(24i) Sin >> Poverty (Forms of fear) >> Jews are envious of the gospel – Israel has always been God’s example of man; He wanted them to be a good example, but because they refused, He used them as an example of human nature under the curse of sin, and He has demonstrated through them what can happen to a nation when they rebel against God. Truth has become impossible to them. Man has been this way from the beginning, and God has been selecting out of the world His worshippers, which best explains the relationship between God and man throughout the ages, as Jesus alluded in Jn 4-23, “For such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.” When it comes to spiritual truth, people are aware of it; the question is whether they are willing to admit it. This is different from all other forms of knowledge, such as mathematics; we either know the answer to a math problem or we don’t, but with spiritual truth, it is a matter of admitting it. To this day Israel still denies that Jesus Christ is their Messiah, though they know it's true, they just refuse to admit it. One day Israel will confess the truth and return to their faith, and God will glorify Himself through the legacy of Israel’s rebellion, for in that day Israel will obey God through their regret of not confessing their sins earlier. They will take over managing the gospel and effect a Great Endtime Revival that will daunt all gentile revivals, but until then, God continues to reach out to a rebellious and obstinate people.

(142b) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> Prophesy about the dispensation >> Gentiles are included

(222h) Kingdom of God >> The elusive Kingdom of Heaven >> Do not give what is holy to dogs >> God shares no intimacy with dogs >> God does not let dogs in His house

Rom 10-19,20

(32a) Gift of God >> God is our Father >> Grace >> God’s grace seeks man

(117e) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Let Jesus do the work >> Let Him work on you

(211b) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Gentiles included >> God gives the Gentiles Israel’s place – Paul is talking about the prophecy of Scripture that was predestined to occur, namely that Israel would reject the gospel of Christ because of their disobedient and obstinate ways, and that Paul should turn to the gentiles. Unbelief is opposite the same coin from disobedience. They are one and the same thing, for unbelief produces disobedience and disobedience snowballs into further unbelief. Throughout Paul’s Christian life he had been working with the Jews trying to get them saved and finding that they were very reluctant to believe in Jesus, and then turned to the gentiles as his procedure for preaching the gospel in every city. We find in the Old Testament this was exactly the course that Paul should have taken. In fact, at the very onset of Paul’s salvation God spoke to Ananias who came to Paul’s aid and ministered to him after his encounter with Christ on the road to Damascus, who said to him in Act 9-15, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of Mine, to bear My name before the gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel.” Throughout Paul’s ministry he never stopped preaching to the Jews because he had a heart for them. He was a Jew himself, and for this reason he realized all the more that the gospel fit Israel and the Jews like a hand in glove. The gospel was made literally for the Jew first. It may not have been made specifically for those who literally crucified Jesus, but it was made for the Jew who would have never been in that crowd chanting “Crucify Him!” The ones in the crowd (or would have been in the crowd) proved to be the most impossible to reach with the gospel, because they had already made up their minds even before Jesus was crucified, and now that his body has been sacrificed, there are still people like them chanting something similar, who find it just as difficult to believe in Jesus. Their hearts are bitter and cold, and though they may have been called, they have not been chosen. This is what it takes to be saved, to be both called and chosen, to both believe in our hearts and confess with our lips that Jesus is Lord of heaven and earth.

(216k) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> God’s will over man >> God Is Independent Of His Creation >> You cannot control God’s desire for you >> man is not in control of God’s gift

(219a) Sovereignty >> God overrides the will of man >> The elect >> Man is a spectator of his own salvation >> God elects us through His sovereign will

Rom 10-20

(120f) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Forgiveness >> Forgiveness is an act of mercy >> God passes over our sins

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21 But as for Israel He says, "ALL THE DAY LONG I HAVE STRETCHED OUT MY HANDS TO A DISOBEDIENT AND OBSTINATE PEOPLE."

 

Rom 10-21

(18i) Sin >> Twisted thinking >> Unable to distinguish between good and evil >> God’s purpose is evil – The gentiles started out happy to receive the gospel of Christ, and they ran with it for quite some time full of joy and unity, and God blessed His gentile church, and it grew and flourished, but now 2,000 years later, too many false doctrines have been sown into the Church. We have the Bible in front of us and we can read it as an accurate account of God's word, yet it doesn’t seem to help, because of all our preconceived notions based on the many false doctrines the Church has come to believe. It is our interpretation of the Scriptures that is in error. So many things the Church believes today are completely erroneous. 

(21b) Sin >> Disobedient to the call – This is an accurate description of the Jews’ treatment of their prophets, which led to turning against their Messiah and having Him nailed to a cross. What we need to understand about the Bible is that it is always relevant in every generation. When the New Testament brings up an Old Testament passage, we can know for certain that it has relevance in our day too. In other words, Paul is making a point by bringing up this Old Testament verse that there is a recurring theme of man being unprepared whenever God comes to visit him. That is, in the last days the Church will become just like the Jews, unprepared, disobedient and obstinate. The Jews turned their ears away from their prophets, and Christians have done the same to the Holy Spirit, refusing to listen to Him, much less obey His voice. Jesus reiterated something more than any other statement pertaining to the hearing ear, showing the relevance of it, being the most important asset to a Christian especially in the last days. Jesus suffered and died to provide a divine way for us to live a godly life through the power of the Holy Spirit, and we tap into that power by doing what Jesus said in Rev 2-7,11,17,29 and Rev 3-6,13,22, “He who has ears to hear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the Churches,” and then doing what He says. If we are not willing to obey the Holy Spirit, then the Bible teaches we are not willing to obey God even if He were to speak to us face to face as Jesus did with the Jews, which really on some level is what He is doing when He speaks to us by His Spirit. It is much like what the Jews did by turning a deaf ear to their prophets. Old covenant prophets had a new covenant relationship with God, who were given a glimpse into the new covenant future. These were mere men who heard the voice of the Holy Spirit, just as we Christians do, making us all prophets according to the standard of the old covenant. The Jews heard the word of God through flesh and blood, whereas we hear it directly from the Holy Spirit. For us to reject the voice of the Holy Spirit is like being a disobedient prophet of the old covenant, and there were terrible consequences for their insolence (1Kings 13,11-34).

(49a) Judgment >> Nations are destroyed >> Israel judged as an example for us – The gentile church is turning rebellious and disobedient prior to Christ's return, just like the condition of Israel prior to His first appearance. Mat 22,3-6 discusses the Church’s rejection of Christ based on the mention of a wedding feast, God using the Jewish nation as managers of His Great Endtime Revival to step over the gentile church to create a new people, who will obey the Holy Spirit to become His true worshippers, whereas Rom 10-21 speaks of Israel’s rejection of their Messiah. God stepped over the Jews during Paul's day to elect the gentiles as stewards of His gospel during the age of grace. God will not be disappointed or rejected, nor can we foil God’s plan or use our lies to fight against Him to succeed in any way. Whenever we find ourselves fighting against God, we condemn ourselves. We are following in Israel’s footsteps, which is truly a scary thought. The Jews had completely misinterpreted their Old Testament Scriptures to the point that they could not recognize their Messiah when He came (Judaism and the Old Testament Scriptures have almost nothing in common). The same thing is happening to the Church today. Many of the belief systems that people have of the new covenant do not even resemble the New Testament. God could just as easily speak to the Church in the last days as He spoke to the Jews at His first appearing, “All the day long I have stretched out my hands to a disobedient and obstinate people.” 

(70h) Authority >> Sin of familiarity >> Familiar with Jesus in the Spirit

(167i) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil (Conspiracy) >> Carnality/Secularism (Mindset of the World) >> The carnal mind does not receive the things of God >> It rejects God

(180i) Works of the devil >> Practicing witchcraft >> Rebellion >> Rebelling against God’s narrow way >> Rebelling against the will of God – Israel as a nation cannot teach the world by example how to relate to God, for their legacy is a people who have rebelled against Him. Israel’s attitude has been that God has chosen them apart from all other people and nations, as though they were automatically in good standing with Him. However, since they are completely wrong about this, they have become devoid of true knowledge in regard to their actual position with God. They could have been an exemplar nation; instead, they showed just how deep the sinful nature spans the human soul. God glorified Himself through Israel as Paul said in Rom 5-20,21, “The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” God glorified Himself in their disobedience through the demonstration of His grace, so the more we sin the more God forgives us. In this way God has glorified Himself through Israel’s disobedience by practicing loving kindness to them and to us. The result was that God sent His Son into the world through Israel, and through their rebellion they inadvertently sacrificed their own Messiah for the sins of the world, which in God’s view was the sacrifice they had been practicing for centuries in the Levitical Priesthood through temple worship. They didn’t know what they were doing, according to Jesus’ confession on the cross, “Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing” (Lk 23-34).

(185l) Works of the devil >> The result of lawlessness >> Blasphemy >> Unwilling to obey the revelation from heaven >> Unwilling to walk in God’s freedom

(198c) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Man withers when he is in control >> Ungrateful

(202a) Denying Christ >> Man chooses his own destiny apart from God >> Running from God >> Man’s will over God >> Man is unwilling to walk in God’s grace – The most frustrating aspect of mankind is his overall attitude about God and how people have turned Him into a monster, accusing Him of all the sins that they themselves have committed. The Father threw all man's sin on Jesus when nailed to the cross dying, and now man is trying to do it again, claiming that He is somehow responsible for their own actions. Their logic is amazingly absent. Talk to people nowadays; they have possibly developed the most negative opinion about God of any people of any generation; they have completely lost their fear of God, and it is largely to do with the apostasy of the Church. Just as Israel was man’s failed example of how to relate to God in the Old Testament, so the Church has become man’s failed example in the New Testament, only the gentiles have less excuse because we have more knowledge. Israel considered themselves better than anybody else, because God chose them from all the nations of the world. In turn, the Church’s big mistake has been to surmise that God loves us so much that we can sin and get away with it. The mistakes of both Jew and gentile are based on arrogance, one on egomania and the other on hedonistic pride. The more knowledge increases, the more sin increases, and so the Church’s rebellion against God is a worse offense than Israel’s rebellion, since they remained in ignorance, albeit a willful ignorance. Therefore, we could just as well apply this verse to the Church.

(235e) Giving (your inner self (Key verse)

(235h) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Invest in the kingdom >> Giving (your inner self) >> Be liberal in your giving to be like God

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