Rev. Brian Flamme, pastor at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Roswell, NM, joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study Romans 11:1-12.
Although Israel according to the flesh has rejected God’s Word, He has not rejected His people. St. Paul himself, a physical descendant from Abraham, had heard the Gospel and believed. As He always has, God has preserved for Himself a remnant of His elect, those whom He has saved by His grace. As Elijah’s eyes were opened to see God’s remnant in the midst of rampant idolatry in his day, so St. Paul’s eyes were opened to see God’s remnant in the midst of the rejection of the Gospel by a majority of Jews. The key is to see the Church as God sees her: according to grace, not works. The elect among Israel according to the flesh did receive the righteousness of faith, but the rest were hardened. As God gave them over to their sinful desires, He did so not as a permanent rejection, but in a desire to break their hardened hearts and bring them to repentance and faith. Just as He had embraced the Gentiles with His grace, so too He would use the jealousy the Jews had toward the Gentiles in an effort to bring them back to His fatherly embrace.
“The Righteousness of God for You” is a mini-series on Sharper Iron that goes through St. Paul’s Epistle to the Romans. Human righteousness cannot save, because all have sinned and fall short of God’s glory. Only the righteousness of God can bring life and forgiveness to sinners. This is the righteousness that He has fulfilled in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is the righteousness that is revealed in the Gospel, the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes. This is the righteousness that is not earned, but is freely given by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone.
Sharper Iron, hosted by Rev. Timothy Appel, looks at the text of Holy Scripture both in its broad context and its narrow detail, all for the sake of proclaiming Christ crucified and risen for sinners. Two pastors engage with God’s Word to sharpen not only their own faith and knowledge, but the faith and knowledge of all who listen.
Sharper Iron is underwritten by Lutheran Church Extension Fund, where your investments help support the work of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Visit lcef.org.
The Remnant of Israel
11 I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! For I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham,[a] a member of the tribe of Benjamin. 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? 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.” 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.
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.”
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.”
Gentiles Grafted In
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. 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[b] mean!
- Romans 11:1 Or one of the offspring of Abraham
- Romans 11:12 Greek their fullness
English Standard Version (ESV)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.