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Showing posts from January, 2020

Romans 12:2: Do Not Be Conformed To This World, But Be Transformed By The Renewal Of Your Mind

Romans 12:2 [2] Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. (ESV) Have you ever known someone who seemed to always be putting on an act? Instead of just being their normal self they tried to act as if they were someone else. This kind of phony behavior is what the Apostle Paul is addressing here. We who belong to Jesus Christ have been transformed and regenerated by the power of God. We ought to act like it. When Christians adapt their behavior to look like the world around them they are being completely inconsistent with who they are in Christ. This was the case with the people Paul was talking to in Rome. He is reminding them here that they are to not allow themselves to be like the world, but rather they are to be transformed. So, how are we transformed? Paul says that this transformation happens by the renewal of our mind. We should all

Romans 12:1: I Appeal To You Therefore, Brothers, By The Mercies Of God, To Present Your Bodies As A Living Sacrifice

Romans 12:1 [1] I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. (ESV) There is a key word in this verse. Do you know what it is? "Therefore." Among the many corny puns that are used by ministers is this one: "Whenever you see a "therefore" in Scripture you need to find out what it is "there" "for." The word therefore lets us know that this verse is in response to what has been said prior to this verse. In the previous verse, Romans 11:36, Paul says, " For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen." Since everything in our lives is for the Lord's glory our lives ought to be lived as sacrifices unto him. It is an act of absolute gratitude in response to all the many gifts that the Lord has bestowed upon us. I love this phrase that Paul uses, "living sacrifice

Romans 11:36: For From Him And Through Him And To Him Are All Things.

Romans 11:36 [36] For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen. (ESV) Someone asked me one day, "What is the meaning of life?" I replied, "To love God and enjoy him forever." They were not surprised at my answer. What would you have said? This is a key question that many people are wanting an answer for whether they verbalize the question or not. In our verse today the Apostle Paul sums up what life is all about. Everything is for God's glory! From him are all things. We are incredibly blessed with many things. Life. Breath. Consciousness. Joy. Understanding. The list could go on. (Add some of your own blessings). The one who truly understands what life is about recognizes that there is a source for all of these wonderful blessings. All things come from him and warrant continuous praise and glory to be given to God. Through him are all things. This speaks of God's sustaining power in the universe. Scientists

Romans 11:35: "Or Who Has Given A Gift To Him That He Might Be Repaid?"

Romans 11:35 [35] “Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” (ESV) Have you ever met someone who acted as if they were "God's gift to the world."? This expression is used of those who seem to be full of themselves. I think that there are some who teach a theology that we are so wonderful that God just could not live without us. It is as if we are a gift that God had to pay for because we are so great. In this verse Paul is speaking of God himself. Who has given God a gift that somehow would obligate him to pay them back? Consider for a moment that we are full of sin; we are rebels to God's perfect standard of holiness; we are objects of God's wrath. If we truly understand how unholy we are we will never think that we are some kind of wonderful gift. In this verse Paul is alluding to a passage in the book of Job. In Job 41:11 it says, "Who has first given to me, that I should repay him? Whatever is under the whole heaven is mine."

Romans 11:34: For Who Has Known The Mind Of The Lord, Or Who Has Been His Counselor?

Romans 11:34 [34] “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” (ESV) I have heard people say things like, "When I get to heaven I am going to ask God a lot of questions." They make this statement almost as if God has some explaining to do for how he has conducted himself as the God of this universe. This is, of course, a very foolish position to place oneself in. When we are in God's presence we will act with absolute humility and reverence. It is fascinating that the Apostle Paul is here quoting the prophet Isaiah. Isaiah knew that those who had seen the Lord did not act as if they were in any position to be the Lord's counselor. How did Isaiah know this? Isaiah had a vision in which he saw the Lord. Take special note of how Isaiah responded to the very presence of God in Isaiah 6:4-5: Isaiah 6:4–5 [4] And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. [5] And I said:

Romans 11:33: Oh, The Depths Of The Riches And Wisdom And Knowledge Of God!

Romans 11:33 [33] Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! (ESV) There is something special that happens when we meditate on the character and nature of our God. The Apostle Paul demonstrates this truth for us here in verse 33. After he has spent considerable time describing for us how God has a plan of redemption for both Jews and Gentiles he bursts into praise of our wonderful God. Before looking more carefully at this praise that Paul lifts up to the Lord I invite you to pause for a moment. What do you do when you read a passage of Scripture that speaks of the character and nature of God? What do you do when you hear a hymn that speaks of who God is? Does your heart explode with praise for your awesome Lord? It would be a proper response. Have you considered the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God? Man is always searching for knowledge. Sadly, man tends to look for knowledge in all the

Romans 11:32: For God Has Consigned All To Disobedience, That He May Have Mercy On All.

Romans 11:32 [32] For God has consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all. (ESV) I enjoy going to "consignment" shops. Many of the things found there are at a price that I can afford. Can you imagine going to a consignment shop full of items that were all marked, "Disobedience"? Not exactly the kind of store that would attract many shoppers. Paul says that God has consigned all to disobedience. What does it mean that God consigned us all to disobedience. Quite simply, God allows every man and woman to pursue their disobedience. Instead of stopping us, he allows us to sin freely as our sinful nature is wont to do. I may wish that he would stop me of all my disobedience, but that is not part of God's plan. The reason why is found in the remainder of the verse. "That he may have mercy on all." Imagine if you will, that God is out shopping. It is not as if he needs anything, but he pokes his head into the humanity store and asks

Romans 11:30-31: You Were At One Time Disobedient To God But Now Have Received Mercy

Romans 11:30–31 [30] For just as you were at one time disobedient to God but now have received mercy because of their disobedience, [31] so they too have now been disobedient in order that by the mercy shown to you they also may now receive mercy. (ESV) I can remember my father correcting me as a child if I was pointing my finger at someone else. He was quick to remind me that every time I point the finger at someone there are four fingers pointing back at me. We love to point the finger. It is far easier to point out someone else's sin than it is to honestly deal with our own. There is no question that the Jewish people had rebelled against their God. They had killed the Messiah that was promised to them. The Apostle Peter said it this way: "This Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. (Acts 2:23, ESV)" The Gentiles were aware of the sins of the Israelites. It would have

Romans 11:29: For The Gifts And The Calling Of God Are Irrevocable.

Romans 11:29 [29] For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. (ESV) Nestled in the midst of this very challenging chapter of Romans is this wonderful little verse. The context of this verse is the people of Israel. They had rejected their own Messiah and had him put to death. Their hearts were hardened toward God. All of that sounds very bleak. But God cannot let his people go (pun intended). The gifts and calling of God are irrevocable. God does not give up on those whom he has called unto himself. The people of Israel were called by God to be his children. He will not drop them as his people even though he has every right to. He will always love his own. He will continue to call them unto himself. This is not only good news for the people of Israel. This is good news for everyone of every tribe, people, and nation. If God calls you he does not forget that calling he has placed on your life. Maybe you have a loved on who you know was once following the Lord. They h

Romans 11:28: As Regards The Gospel, They Are Enemies For Your Sake.

Romans 11:28 [28] As regards the gospel, they are enemies for your sake. But as regards election, they are beloved for the sake of their forefathers. (ESV) Did you ever have a family member that was just really hard to get along with? I am sure that there are very few people who could say that they always get along with everyone in their family all the time. In some respects the Apostle Paul is having to deal with a family feud between the Gentile Christians and the Jewish non-Christians. The non-believing Jews are enemies of the Gospel. In the previous verses Paul has described a partial hardening of the hearts of the Jews. This does not mean that there are no Jewish converts to Christianity, but they are a small number. For the most part the Jews are acting like the older brother who cannot get along with his younger siblings. In Acts 14:19, Luke writes of what happened to Paul as he preached the Gospel at the city of Lystra:  "But Jews came from Antioch and Iconium, a

Romans 11:26-27: And In This Way All Israel Will Be Saved

Romans 11:26–27 [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.” (ESV) The Apostle Paul is referring in these verses to a prophecy by the prophet Isaiah. It speaks of the fact that there are those who belong to the nation of Israel who are going to be saved at a later time. They are the Elect of God, just as we understand that people of all races and peoples have been called by God to be his Elect. One thing we have to be very careful about when we look at this passage of Scripture is to not misunderstand the nature of salvation. There is no salvation for anyone who does not repent of their sins and accept the sacrifice of the Savior's blood on their behalf. The Jews do not get a free pass here. Nor does anyone else. Not now. Not ever. Those who are truly the Elect of God will receive God's gift of faith

Romans 11:25: A Partial Hardening Has Come Upon Israel

Romans 11:25 [25] 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. (ESV) You have probably heard someone say, "God's time is not our time." This is true. God is a sovereign God. He does things according to his perfect eternal plan. Consider the timing of Christ's entrance into humanity. Ephesians 4:4 describes the timing of Christ's birth as, "When the fullness of time had come." God's timing is perfect. The Israelites are experiencing a partial hardening of their hearts until the fullness of the time of the Gentiles. This hardening started with the Jews to a large degree rejecting Jesus as their Messiah. Not every Jew rejected the Gospel. Paul himself was a Jew who gave his life to Jesus Christ. God has always kept for himself a remnant of believers. We do not necessarily know how long this partial hardeni

Romans 11:24: For If You Were Cut From What Is By Nature A Wild Olive Tree, And Grafted, Contrary To Nature, Into A Cultivated Olive Tree . . .

Romans 11:24 [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. (ESV) We continue looking at the illustration of an olive tree. The root of the tree is the covenant relationship relationship of God with Abraham. Abraham's faith is what this spiritual tree is built on. The first branches would have been the faithful people of Israel, who like Abraham, placed their faith in God. They believed God, just like Abraham, and it was credited to them as righteousness. There were branches of the people of Israel who never placed their faith in God. Because these branches were not true followers of God they were broken off of the tree. Faith in God was the essential element that made the branches true branches of this spiritual tree. Some branches remained. Others, the faithless unbelievers, were removed. After Jesu

Romans 11:23: And Even They, If They Do Not Continue In Their Unbelief, Will Be Grafted In

Romans 11:23 [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. (ESV) Paul is speaking in this verse of the people of Israel. In the Old Testament we find God beginning a covenant relationship with Abraham. Abraham's descendants are the Jews, the people of Israel. In previous verses Paul has spoken of a tree with the root being Abraham. The descendants were to be the branches on that tree. Some, by their unbelief were branches that were broken off. Paul is saying here that the Jews have not been given a death sentence. If they are a branch that is cut off because of unbelief there is a remedy; belief! God has always had a remnant of people in every generation who have placed their faith in him. We can get very discouraged, thinking that there is no one left on earth who is following the Lord. We would be wrong. Perhaps you have known someone who has an unbelieving son or daughter. The parent pra

Romans 11:21-22: Note Then The Kindness And The Severity Of God

Romans 11:21–22 [21] 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. (ESV) There is an old expression in the church that says, "God has no grandchildren." Some have made the mistake that they believe they are a Christian because their family is Christian. Their parents were Christian. Their nation is a Christian nation. There were many Jews who made that mistake. They were part of the nation of Israel, God's chosen nation. They did not follow God, or even know him. God did not spare the Jews who did not belong to him. Even though they belonged to the Jewish nation by birth they did not follow his Law. They did not love him. They followed after other gods, worshiping idols and living as rebels to the true God who called them. These natural branch

Romans 11:19-20: They Were Broken Off Because Of Their Unbelief, But You Stand Fast Through Faith

Romans 11:19–20 [19] Then you will say, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” [20] That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast through faith. So do not become proud, but fear. (ESV) There is always a danger in the church at large with people not taking seriously enough the things of God. An offer of God's amazing grace to us ought to fill us with a sense of awe and wonder. We should see our sinful rebellious heart and be astonished that God would show mercy and grace to such an undeserving person. His grace ought to lead us to awe and wonder, giving him glory. Sadly, God's offer of grace is often perceived as the almighty creator looking down at us and thinking that he just could not pass up the opportunity to have us as his very own. After all, we are so wonderful. What a catch we are. This selfish kind of thinking has no basis in Scripture. There are churches that either directly or indirectly are teaching this

Romans 11:17-18: Remember, It Is Not You Who Support The Root, But The Root That Supports You

Romans 11:17–18 [17] But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree, [18] do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you. (ESV) I am not an expert when it comes to things like olive trees. There are some things that we need to understand about olive trees if we are to understand what Paul is saying here in these verses. Apparently, olive trees can live for hundreds of years. Branches will sometimes die and no longer offer any fruit. Wild branches are then grafted in and are able to connect with the root and live. Paul uses this wonderful picture of olive trees that his original audience would have been very familiar with. He talks about some of the branches being broken off. These are the Israelites who had fallen away in their unbelief and rebellion. The wild olive shoots tha

Romans 11:16: If The Dough Offered as Firstfruits Is Holy, So Is The Whole Lump

Romans 11:16 [16] If the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, so is the whole lump, and if the root is holy, so are the branches. (ESV) Paul uses a couple illustrations to describe the Israelite people. Dough for a lump of bread and the root of a tree. He says that these represent firstfruits. We must immediately raise the question, "What are firstfruits? Firstfruits is a biblical concept that we find first in the Old Testament, and also repeated in the New Testament. The Baker's Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology defines firstfruits in this way: "The concept of firstfruits derives from God's creation work. Because God created everything that exists, all of creation belongs to him ( Psalm 24:1 ). Consequently, that which is first and best belongs to him and is to be given to him." The first and the best that were given to the Lord in regards to the people of Israel would have been Abraham. He was a faithful man of God who was called to be the

Romans 11:15: For If Their Rejection Means The Reconciliation Of The World, What Will Their Acceptance Mean But Life From The Dead?

Romans 11:15 [15] For if their rejection means the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance mean but life from the dead? (ESV) The Jews had rejected the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Some had received Him, but for the most part the Jewish nation had hardened their hearts to the truth. In some ways it seems natural that the ones who were responsible for placing the Son of God on a cross would not want to admit their guilt. It is human nature that we do not like to admit our wrong. Imagine having to admit such a great error. As the Jews rejected the Gospel message the doors were opened to the Gentiles. Paul's life as a missionary to Gentile nations is recorded in the book of Acts. In every town he offered the Gospel first to the Jews. Once they rejected his message he offered it to the Gentiles where it was in many cases received with joy. Paul tells us in Romans 1:16 the order in proclaiming the Gospel. He said, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is

Romans 11:13-14: Now I Am Speaking To You Gentiles.

Romans 11:13–14 [13] Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry [14] in order somehow to make my fellow Jews jealous, and thus save some of them. (ESV) Paul recognized that God had called him to be an apostle to the Gentiles. In so doing, he had not forgotten about his Jewish brothers and sisters. In the early parts of his ministry when he would come into a city he would always preach to the Jews first, then to the Gentiles. His heart was to reach his own first, and also to reach the Gentiles. This is a good pattern for us to follow as believers. We should all be passionate about sharing the Gospel with all people. First and foremost we need to share the Gospel with those who are closest to us. Our family members should be the first ones to hear the Gospel from us. In addition to reaching our families, loved ones, and those close by, we also need to spread the Gospel around the world. Paul's ministry was magn

Romans 11:12: Now If Their Trespass Means Riches For The World, . . . How Much More Will Their Full Inclusion Mean!

Romans 11:12 [12] Now if their trespass means riches for the world, and if their failure means riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their full inclusion mean! (ESV) It is a wonderful thing when good things come out of tragedy. Perhaps you have known a person who lost their eyesight. The tragic loss may have led to an enhanced ability to use their sense of hearing. Someone who has become a paraplegic may have an ability to minister to those who are in similar condition that a person without said condition would not be able to minister in the same way. There is no question that the Jews' rejection of their Messiah was tragic. It was tragic that in the first sense they failed to acknowledge his Lordship when he was on the Earth. It was also tragic that they continued to refuse to place their faith in him even after he had raised from the dead, securing eternal life and forgiveness for all who would believe in him. Could any good come from the trespass of the Jews? Pau

Romans 11:11: So, I Ask, Did They Stumble In Order That They Might Fall?

Romans 11:11 [11] So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather, through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. (ESV) We live in a world where you have to child proof everything. I can remember the day that I purchased a wood stove in my home. I had small children at the time. The concern that some people had was that my child might get burned. It is a legitimate concern. I am pretty sure my in-laws wanted me to put a fifteen foot barricade in front of the stuff lest any of the precious ones get burned. I want to be clear. I did not want my children to get burned on the hot wood stove. However, I remember a different time where my father would have simply told me that the stove was hot and to be careful around it. If I got burned it would have been the result of my carelessness and a burn on my hand would be a healthy reminder to be more careful. Let's use this illustration in reference to the peopl

Romans 11:9-10: And David Says, "Let Their Table Become A Snare And A Trap"

Romans 11:9–10 [9] And David says, “Let their table become a snare and a trap, a stumbling block and a retribution for them; [10] let their eyes be darkened so that they cannot see, and bend their backs forever.” (ESV) The Apostle Paul is quoting Psalm 69:22-23 here in these verses. As you read the Old Testament you need to always dig a little deeper to understand what is being said. David used the word "table" in the verses that Paul is quoting. What is he talking about? David would be talking about a table in terms of a place of safety. The Israelites were looking to their own works as a place of safety. They were intent on trying to keep the Law as a means of feeling that they were safe and secure in their walk with God. Paul is saying here, by quoting David, that the Israelites table is not the place of safety that they think it is. Rather, depending on their own works for righteousness is a snare and a trap. Consider that the purpose of the Law was to show all

Romans 11:7-8: What Then? Israel Failed To Obtain What It Was Seeking

Romans 11:7–8 [7] What then? Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. The elect obtained it, but the rest were hardened, [8] as it is written, “God gave them a spirit of stupor, eyes that would not see and ears that would not hear, down to this very day.” (ESV) The Jews of the Apostle Paul's day would have surely made a claim that they were pursuing God. Isn't it interesting that those who put Jesus to death on a cross also would have made the claim that they were pursuing God. They accused Jesus himself of blasphemy. One who does not care about God would not care about blasphemy. It is a tragic thing when those who are sincere also happen to be sincerely wrong. That was the case for the Jews of Paul's day. He says here in verse 7 that Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. It was seeking righteousness, but had to settle for self-righteousness, not the righteousness which is by faith that comes through belief in Jesus Christ. Who did obtain what the Jews

Romans 11:5-6: So Too At The Present Time There Is A Remnant, Chosen By Grace

Romans 11:5–6 [5] So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace. [6] But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works; otherwise grace would no longer be grace. (ESV) God always has a remnant. In every generation there are a people set apart for God's glory. As Paul showed us in the previous verses Israel had a remnant of people who had not bowed their knee to false idols. God had to reassure the great prophet Elijah about this remnant. In verse 5 of our text Paul speaks of a remnant. He prefaces his words about the remnant by saying, "at the present time." Paul is saying that there continues to be a remnant of those who belong to God, but clearly something has changed. What is the difference? Grace. In the past those who were followers of God were known by their works. They were seeking to obey God's Law. They lived by the Law. This new remnant of believers is set apart by grace. Paul was preaching to people who had placed their

Romans 11:3-4: "Lord, They Have Killed Your Prophets, They Have Demolished Your Altars, And I Alone Am Left"

Romans 11:3–4 [3] “Lord, they have killed your prophets, they have demolished your altars, and I alone am left, and they seek my life.” [4] But what is God's reply to him? “I have kept for myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.” (ESV) Have you ever felt like you were the only one who loves the Lord? Whether you are at school, work, or even at family reunions you think that no one else is a Christian. Paul reminds his readers that the great prophet Elijah felt just the same. Paul raises the example of Elijah in the context of arguing that God has not rejected his people, Israel. Elijah mentions that the people of Israel had killed God's prophets. They had demolished God's altars. Things were so bad that Elijah was convinced he was the only one left who was following the Lord. I do not know how many times people have said to me that things are so bad nowadays, as if they have never been this bad. Isn't it interesting how the Lord responds

Romans 11:2: God Has Not Rejected His People Whom He Foreknew.

Romans 11:2 [2] God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. Do you not know what the Scripture says of Elijah, how he appeals to God against Israel? (ESV) As wayward as the people of Israel had become they had not been rejected by God. In the previous verse Paul raised the question as to whether or not God would reject his people. No way! In this verse Paul continues to show us why God will not reject his people. He gives us a beautiful word here: foreknowledge. We should probably look at what it means. What is foreknowledge? We know that God exists outside of the confines of time and space. While it may be hard for our finite minds to fully grasp we can still believe that God in some way knew us before we were even born. He knows the end from the beginning. Ephesians 1:4 reminds us that, "He chose us in him before the foundation of the world." If God knew us before the foundation of the world it begs the question, "What was his "knowing us" bas

Romans 11:1: I Ask, Then, Has God Rejected His People? By No Means!

Romans 11:1 [1] I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! For I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. (ESV) Have you ever been in a tense situation where someone needed to address the elephant in the room, but no one is willing. I believe that the Apostle Paul was one of those people who was not afraid to address the elephant in the room. He was willing to ask the hard questions that people were thinking but might not be bold enough to ask. In the previous chapters Paul has made a case against the people of Israel. He quotes the prophet Isaiah in which God refers to the people of Israel as a "disobedient and contrary people (Romans 10:21)." If the Jewish people are this far gone does that mean that God is done with them? Has he moved on to the Gentiles and rejected the people of Israel? It is a natural question. Paul raises the question and has a quick response. By no means! Paul could not be more emphatic i

Romans 10:20-21: "I Have Been Found By Those Who Did Not Seek Me"

Romans 10:20–21 [20] Then Isaiah is so bold as to say, “I have been found by those who did not seek me; I have shown myself to those who did not ask for me.” [21] But of Israel he says, “All day long I have held out my hands to a disobedient and contrary people.” (ESV) The proclamation of the Gospel was a challenge for the first century Jews. Jesus himself was the message of the Gospel and they had him put to death. For them to embrace Jesus Christ would mean for them to admit that they had crucified the Son of God. They would have to admit that they were wrong about who he was, and that God had used their own stubbornness as part of his plan. While it is true that the first believers in Jesus Christ were Jews, it is also true that the biggest persecution that the early Church faced was from Jews. Paul himself was one of the Jews who was going house to house arresting Christians and trying to put an end to this group of followers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In today's

Romans 10:19: But I Ask, Did Israel Not Understand? First Moses Says, "I Will Make You Jealous"

Romans 10:19 [19] But I ask, did Israel not understand? First Moses says, “I will make you jealous of those who are not a nation; with a foolish nation I will make you angry.” (ESV) Have you ever been in a room when two lovers begin to quarrel? It is a very awkward situation. God's relationship with the people of Israel was a relationship between two lovers. Because of the waywardness of Israel it was a relationship where God was faithful to a spouse who was not. God plays the role of the jilted lover. Imagine God having a conversation about his lover, Israel. Would you like to listen in? Paul says in this verse that Israel should have understood what the relationship with God was about. She should have realized that God wanted a faithful bride. Because she had been unfaithful God planned to make her jealous by offering his love to another. So, what would the new nation look like that God wanted to have a relationship with? Was she pretty? Surely, Israel would want to kno