God has not cast off all Israel
1 I say then, Did God cast off his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. 2 God did not cast off his people which he foreknew. Or know ye not what the scripture saith of Elijah? how he pleadeth with God against Israel: 3 Lord, they have killed thy prophets, they have digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life. 4 But what saith the answer of God unto him? I have left for myself seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to Baal. 5 Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. 6 But if it is by grace, it is no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace.
Some were elected, though the rest were hardened
7 What then? That which Israel seeketh for, that he obtained not; but the election obtained it, and the rest were hardened: 8 according as it is written, God gave them a spirit of stupor, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear, unto this very day. 9 And David saith,
Let their table be made a snare, and a trap,
And a stumblingblock, and a recompense unto them:
10 Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see,
And bow thou down their back always.
11 I say then, Did they stumble that they might fall? God forbid: but by their 6 fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, to provoke them to jealousy. 12 Now if their fall is the riches of the world, and their loss the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness? 13 But I speak to you that are Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle of Gentiles, I glorify my ministry; 14 if by any means I may provoke to jealousy them that are my flesh, and may save some of them. 15 For if the casting away of them is the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead?
There is hope of their conversion
16 And if the firstfruit is holy, so is the lump: and if the root is holy, so are the branches. 17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and thou, being a wild olive, wast grafted in among them, and didst become partaker with them of the root of the fatness of the olive tree;
The Gentiles may not exult over them
18 glory not over the branches: but if thou gloriest, it is not thou that bearest the root, but the root thee. 19 Thou wilt say then, Branches were broken off, that I might be grafted in. 20 Well; by their unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by thy faith. Be not highminded, but fear: 21 for if God spared not the natural branches, neither will he spare thee. 22 Behold then the goodness and severity of God: toward them that fell, severity; but toward thee, God’s goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off. 23 And they also, if they continue not in their unbelief, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again. 24 For if thou wast cut out of that which is by nature a wild olive tree, and wast grafted contrary to nature into a good olive tree; how much more shall these, which are the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree?
25 For I would not, brethren, have you ignorant of this mystery, lest ye be wise in your own conceits, that a hardening in part hath befallen Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in;
Yahweh has promised Israel’s salvation
26 and so all Israel shall be saved: even as it is written,
There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer;
He shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:
27 And this is my covenant unto them,
When I shall take away their sins.
28 As touching the gospel, they are enemies for your sake: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers’ sake. 29 For the gifts and the calling of God are not repented of. 30 For as ye in time past were disobedient to God, but now have obtained mercy by their disobedience, 31 even so have these also now been disobedient, that by the mercy shown to you they also may now obtain mercy. 32 For God hath shut up all unto disobedience, that he might have mercy upon all.
Yahweh’s judgments are unsearchable
33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past tracing out! 34 For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? 35 or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? 36 For of him, and through him, and unto him, are all things. To him be the glory for ever. Amen.
That Israel has not been forever set aside is the theme of this chapter.
- The salvation of Paul proves that there is still a remnant (Romans 11:1)
- The doctrine of the remnant proves it (Romans 11:2-6)
- The present national unbelief was foreseen (Romans 11:7-10)
- Israel’s unbelief is the Gentile opportunity (Romans 11:11-25)
- Israel is judicially broken off from the good olive tree, Messiah (Romans 11:17-22)
- They are to be grafted in again (Rom 11:23-24)
- The promised Deliverer will come out of Zion and the nation will be saved (Romans 11:25-29). That the Christian now inherits the distinctive Jewish promises is not taught in Scripture. The Christian is of the heavenly seed of Abraham ; Gen. 15:5-6; Galatians 3:29 and partakes of the spiritual blessings of the Abrahamic Covenant.
(See Scofield “Genesis 15:18”) but Israel as a nation always has it own place, and is yet to have its greatest exaltation as the earthly people of God. See “Israel” Genesis 12:2; Romans 11:26 “Kingdom” ; Genesis 1:26-28; Zechariah 12:8.
Remnant (Romans 11:5)
In the history of Israel, a “remnant” may be discerned, a spiritual Israel within the national Israel. In Elijah’s time 7,000 had not bowed the knee to Baal 1 Kings 19:18. In Isaiah’s time it was the “very small remnant” for whose sake God still forbore to destroy the nation Isaiah 1:9. During the captivities the remnant appears in Jews like Ezekiel, Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, Esther, and Mordecai. At the end of the 70 years of Babylonian captivity it was the remnant which returned under Ezra and Nehemiah.
At the advent of our Lord, John the Baptist, Simeon, Anna, and “them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem” Luke 2:38 were the remnant. During the church-age the remnant is composed of believing Jews Rom 11:4; Rom 11:5. But the chief interest in the remnant is prophetic. During the great tribulation a remnant out of all Israel will turn to Yeshua as Messiah, and will become His witnesses after the removal of the church Revelation 7:3-8. Some of these will undergo martyrdom Revelation 6:9-11 some will be spared to enter the millennial kingdom Zechariah 12:6-13:9. Many of the Psalms express, prophetically, the joys and sorrows of the tribulation remnant.
remnant Remnant. See, Isaiah 1:9.
grace Grace (in salvation). vs. 2 Corinthians 8:9; Romans 3:24 See note, (See Scofield “John 1:17”)
Fullness (Romans 11:25)
The “fullness of the Gentiles” is the completion of the purpose of God in this age, viz. the outcalling from among the Gentiles of a people for Messiah’s name, “the church which is His body” Ephesians 1:22-23 Cf ; Acts 15:14; Ephesians 4:11-13; 1 Cor 12:12-13. It must be distinguished from “the times of the Gentiles” Luke 21:24.
Jacob (Romans 11:26)
Israel, so named from the grandson of Abraham, was chosen for a fourfold mission:
- To witness to the unity of God in the midst of universal idolatry Deuteronomy 6:4; Isaiah 43:10,12
- to illustrate to the nations the blessedness of serving the true God Deuteronomy 33:26-29; 1 Chronicles 17:20-21; Psalm 144:15.
- to receive, preserve, and transmit the Scripture Deuteronomy 4:5-8; Romans 3:1-2.
- to produce, as to His humanity, the Messiah Genesis 3:15; 12:3; 22:18; 28:10-14; 49:10; 2 Samuel 7:12-16; Isaiah 7:14; 9:6; Matthew 1:1; Romans 1:3. According to the prophets, Israel, regathered from all nations, restored to her own land and converted, is yet to have her greatest earthly exaltation and glory. See “Kingdom (O.T.)” ; Genesis 1:26; Zechariah 12:8.
(See Scofield “Zechariah 12:8”) N.T. Luke 1:31-33; 1 Corinthians 15:24.
“Davidic Covenant” (See Scofield “2 Samuel 7:16”).