We left off last time in Chapter 11 discussing how God rejected Israel so that reconciliation could come to the world and now we see some big words:
- Do not be Arrogant – verse 18 – Gentiles, dont become arrogant toward Israel!
- Do not become Proud – verse 20 – Gentiles, fear the Lord – He didn’t spare them. What of you?
- Lest you be Wise in your own Sight – verse 25 Gentiles, are you aware of the mystery?
Sandwiched inbetween 18,20 & 25 is this:
For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you. 22 Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God’s kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness. Otherwise you too will be cut off. 23 And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again. 24 For if you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, the natural branches, be grafted back into their own olive tree.Romans 11:21-24
Paul is issuing a warning to all those who forget that our God is both Good and Severe. We’d like to put God in a nice little packaged up box that we can understand and that makes sense to us. Yet, He is Great and all together lovely. We must be careful in saying that God is through with Israel. He chose them. He loved them. They will return to Him. Look at the UNTIL’s (emphesis mine)
Isaiah 6:11 Then I said, “How long, O Lord?”
And he said:
“UNTIL cities lie waste
and houses without people,
and the land is a desolate waste
Luke 21:24 They will fall by the edge of the sword and be led captive among all nations, and Jerusalem will be trampled underfoot by the Gentiles, UNTIL the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.
Romans 11: 25-27 Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, UNTIL the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. 26 And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,
“The Deliverer will come from Zion,
he will banish ungodliness from Jacob”;
27 “and this will be my covenant with them
when I take away their sins.”
“For who has known the mind of the Lord,
or who has been his counselor?”
35 “Or who has given a gift to him
that he might be repaid?”
36 For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.
This self-existing God has invited us into a grand story!
Let us not become arrogant and think that He would cast off anyone. He desires that all would come to know the Lord Jesus and be saved.
Thanks for Listening,