The Gift New Testament

A free online Bible study resource


9:1I tell you in all honesty before the Anointed— and my conscience testifies together with me in the Holy Spirit—9:2that I have great sorrow and relentless pain in my heart.9:3For I would be willing to be cursed and separated from the Anointed for the sake of my brothers and sisters, my natural relatives.9:4They are the people of Israel; they possess the adoption, and the honor, and the contracts, and the law, and the divine service, and the promises.9:5They have the ancestors, and above all, as far as the flesh is concerned they are the ones through whom the Anointed came— bless God forever, absolutely!

9:6Now it isn’t as though the Word of God has failed, because not all those who descended from Israel are Israel.19:7All the descendants of Abraham are his children, but “Your descendants will be called through Isaac.”9:8That is, it’s not the natural children who are children of God; rather, it’s the children of the promise who are considered descendants.9:9This is how the promise is worded: “At the appointed time I will return, and Sarah will have a son.”

9:10In addition, Rebecca’s children all had the same father, our ancestor Isaac.9:11But before they were born— before they could have done anything good or bad—9:12the purpose of God remained; the choice was9:13not due to actions but to the One who does the calling. And it was declared to her that “The older will slave for the younger.”9:14What can we say then, that God is unjust? Absolutely not!9:15For as he told Moses, “I will show mercy to whom I choose, and I will show pity to whom I choose.”9:16So then it does not depend on a person’s will or efforts but on God, the one who shows mercy.9:17As the scripture says to Pharaoh, “I raised you up for this very thing, so that I would display my power in you, and so that my Name will be known around the world.”9:18Consequently, God can choose to either be compassionate or to harden.

9:19But you will protest to me, “Then why does he still blame people, since no one can thwart his intentions?”9:20Puny human! Who are you, after all, to talk back to God? Will the thing that’s been formed say to the one who formed it, “Why did you make me like this?”9:21Ridiculous! Doesn’t the potter have the right to take the same lump of clay and make both a container for honorable things and a container for trash?

9:22Suppose God wanted to display his rage and make his power known. By patiently carrying the “trash bins” that are designed for destruction,9:23he also demonstrated the riches of his majesty on the containers of his compassion that were prepared for honor—9:24us, whom he called not only out of the Judeans but also out of the non-Judeans.9:25In Hosea he says, “I will call those who were not my people, My People, and she who was unloved, My Dear,”9:26and, “It will happen in the place where it was declared to them ‘You are not my people’; there they will be called children of the living God.”

9:27Now Isaiah cries over Israel, “Though the people of Israel are as uncountable as the grains of sand, only a small number will be saved.9:28For the Master’s word will bring the earth to a definite end.”9:29And according to what Isaiah declared earlier, “If the Master of Armies hadn’t preserved a small number of us, we would have become Sodom; we would have been compared to Gomorrah.”

9:30So what are we saying? That the non-Judeans, who were not seeking justice, obtained it by means of faith.9:31Yet Israel, who sought a just law, did not obtain it.9:32Why? Because they pursued it out of works and not faith; they stumbled over the Stumbling Stone,9:33just as it is written: “Look, I am laying down a stumbling stone in Zion, and a Rock that trips people, but the one who puts their trust in him will not be embarrassed.”

  1. 1Though Paul says “not all those who descended from Israel are Israel,” he makes it clear throughout this section that he is talking about the two separate lines that came from Abraham. He is not saying that some descendants of Israel are not true Israel.