Israel’s Rejection of Christ

William Carey said, “The future is as bright as the promises of God.” (Lou Nicholes - Missionary/Author).

Promises

Today we begin looking at one of the most difficult parts of the Bible, the ninth chapter of Romans. No matter how much we might struggle to understand specific details of this chapter, the key theme is that God is faithful to keep His promises. Paul gives us three facts to remember as we struggle to resolve why the Jewish people reject Jesus as their Messiah:

  1. The First Fact - We know God has given His promises to Israel (vv. 1-5a). Whenever Christians forget this, it’s caused problems. God has given His promises to Israel, and He’s still bound to keep these promises. God’s assurance that the promise would come through Isaac was given to Abraham, and at the time appointed was fulfilled. God in His wisdom chose Isaac and rejected Ishmael, and He chose Jacob and rejected Esau.
  2. The Second Fact - We know that Jesus fulfills these promises (v. 5b). A close study of the Old Testament and Jesus’ life reveals that Jesus amazingly fulfills the predictions and prophecies about the Messiah. Jesus is the seed of the woman promised in Genesis 3:15. He is the “prophet like Moses” promised in Deuteronomy 18:15. He is the Passover Lamb foreshadowed in the Jewish Passover festival. He is the heir to David’s throne promised in 2 Samuel 7. Jesus was born of a virgin as promised in Isaiah 7:14. He was born in Bethlehem as promised in Micah 5:2. He was crucified as predicted in Psalm 22. He was despised and considered a criminal as predicted in Isaiah 53, and He was raised from the grave as promised in Psalm 16.
  3. The Third Fact - We know God keeps His promises in unexpected ways (vv. 6-13). Paul’s concern here is that a person might conclude that because Israel has rejected Jesus as the Messiah, somehow God’s promises to Israel in the Jewish Scriptures have failed. Yet within ethnic Israel there is a remnant, a small group of Jewish people, who do embrace Jesus as their Messiah.

Application

I am so glad that “whosoever will” may come to a personal relationship with God and that includes me. Romans 10:12 and 13 tell us that whosoever shall call on the Lord shall be saved, and that there is no difference between the Jew or the Greek coming to God.

Romans 9:1-13 (English Standard Version)


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