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Lesson 10 - Children of the Promise

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Overall Question: What makes us as Christians "children of the promise"?

Romans 9:18 New International Version Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden.

Romans 9:18 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY The hardening of a man’s heart is the result of rebellion against the divine revelation and rejection of the Divine Spirit. Paul has spoken earlier in this epistle of how God turns a man over to the inevitable consequences of his stubborn disobedience.


Sunday – Paul’s Burden

Exodus 19:6 Christian Standard Bible and you will be my kingdom of priests and my holy nation.’ These are the words that you are to say to the Israelites.”

Romans 9:1-12 Easy-to-Read Version I am in Christ and I am telling you the truth. I am not lying. And my conscience, ruled by the Holy Spirit, agrees that what I say now is true. 2 I have great sorrow and always feel much sadness 3 for my own people. They are my brothers and sisters, my earthly family. I wish I could help them. I would even have a curse on me and cut myself off from Christ if that would help them. 4 They are the people of Israel, God’s chosen children. They have the glory of God and the agreements he made between himself and his people. God gave them the Law of Moses, the Temple worship, and his promises. 5 They are the descendants of our great fathers, and they are the earthly family of the Messiah, who is God over all things. Praise him forever! Amen. 6 I don’t mean that God failed to keep his promise to the Jewish people. But only some of the people of Israel are really God’s people. 7 And only some of Abraham’s descendants are true children of Abraham. This is what God said to Abraham: “Your true descendants will be those who come through Isaac.” 8 This means that not all of Abraham’s descendants are God’s true children. Abraham’s true children are those who become God’s children because of the promise he made to Abraham. 9 Here is what God said in that promise: “About this time next year I will come back, and Sarah will have a son.” 10 And that is not all. Rebecca also had sons, and they had the same father. He is our father Isaac. 11-12 But before the two sons were born, God told Rebecca, “The older son will serve the younger.” This was before the boys had done anything good or bad. God said this before they were born so that the boy he wanted would be chosen because of God’s own plan. He was chosen because he was the one God wanted to call, not because of anything the boys did.

Romans 9:6 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY Paul’s meaning is that not all who are descended from Israel really belong to Israel in the full spiritual significance of that name. His purpose in making this statement is to explain how the word of God to Israel has not failed. The fulfillment of God’s promise is limited to those who meet the conditions of the covenant relation. For this faithful and obedient remnant the word of God will not fail.

Romans 9:6 COMMENTARY BY ALBERT BARNES Not all the descendants of Jacob have the true spirit of Israelites, or are Jews in the scriptural sense of the term.


Monday – Elected

Romans 9:11-13 Contemporary English Version 11-12 Even before they were born or had done anything good or bad, the Lord told Rebekah that her older son would serve the younger one. The Lord said this to show that he makes his own choices and that it wasn’t because of anything either of them had done. 13 That’s why the Scriptures say that the Lord liked Jacob more than Esau.

Romans 9:14-15 New Century Version 14 So what should we say about this? Is God unfair? In no way. 15 God said to Moses, “I will show kindness to anyone to whom I want to show kindness, and I will show mercy to anyone to whom I want to show mercy.”

Romans 9:14 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY The selection of Israel and the rejection of Ishmael and Esau were examples of God’s choices that a Jew would heartily approve. But Paul has argued that these examples involve a principle that would justify the exclusion of the unbelieving nation of the Jews. To such a conclusion he expects that objection will at once be made.


Tuesday – Mysteries

Isaiah 55:8-9 New English Bible 8 “Indeed, my plans are not like your plans, and my deeds are not like your deeds, 9 for just as the sky is higher than the earth, so my deeds are superior to your deeds and my plans superior to your plans.

Romans 9:17-24 Common English Bible 17 Scripture says to Pharaoh, I have put you in this position for this very thing: so I can show my power in you and so that my name can be spread through the entire earth. 18 So then, God has mercy on whomever he wants to, but he makes resistant whomever he wants to. 19 So you are going to say to me, “Then why does he still blame people? Who has ever resisted his will?” 20 You are only a human being. Who do you think you are to talk back to God? Does the clay say to the potter, “Why did you make me like this?” 21 Doesn’t the potter have the power over the clay to make one pot for special purposes and another for garbage from the same lump of clay? 22 What if God very patiently puts up with pots made for wrath that were designed for destruction, because he wanted to show his wrath and to make his power known? 23 What if he did this to make the wealth of his glory known toward pots made for mercy, which he prepared in advance for glory? 24 We are the ones God has called. We don’t come only from the Jews but we also come from the Gentiles.

Romans 9:19 COMMENTARY BY ALBERT BARNES This does not mean that no one has offered resistance or opposition to God, but that no one had done it successfully. God had accomplished his purposes in spite of their opposition. This was an established point in the sacred writings, and one of the admitted doctrines of the Jews.

Romans 9:19 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY The objector’s question may be paraphrased thus: If God Himself hardens a man’s heart, how can He go on finding fault with him? Is it just for God to blame sinners if their conduct is in accordance with His purpose and is the result of His irresistible will? … Paul does not here attempt to give a full answer to this objection. His sole emphasis in this context is upon the fact that in His government of the world God reserves to Himself perfect freedom to deal with men on His own conditions, and not on theirs, without, of course, interfering with their opportunity for personal salvation. By failing to recognize Paul’s emphasis, some theologians have been led to read into these verses ideas that Paul never intended. Calvin understood them to mean that God arbitrarily created some men for salvation and others for destruction. Such a concept of God’s purpose is not in agreement with Paul’s explanation elsewhere in this same epistle that God shows not partiality but judges each man according to his works and will save everyone who calls upon Him


Wednesday – Ammi: “My People”

Romans 9:25-29 New International Reader’s Version 25 God says in Hosea, “I will call those who are not my people ‘my people.’ I will call the one who is not my loved one ‘my loved one.’ ” (Hosea 2:23) 26 He also says, “Once it was said to them, ‘You are not my people.’ In that very place they will be called ‘children of the living God.’ ” (Hosea 1:10)  27 Isaiah cries out concerning Israel. He says, “The number of people from Israel may be like the sand by the sea. But only a few of them will be saved. 28 The Lord will carry out his sentence. He will be quick to carry it out on earth, once and for all.” (Isaiah 10:22,23) 29 Earlier Isaiah had said, “The Lord who rules over all left us children and grandchildren. If he hadn’t, we would have become like Sodom. We would have been like Gomorrah.” (Isaiah 1:9)


Thursday – Stumbling

Romans 9:30-32 New International Reader’s Version 30 What should we say then? Gentiles did not look for a way to be right with God. But they found it by having faith. 31 The people of Israel tried to obey the law to make themselves right with God. But they didn’t reach their goal of being right with God. 32 Why not? Because they tried to do it without faith. They tried to be right with God by what they did. They tripped over the stone that causes people to trip and fall.

Romans 9:30 SDA BIBLE COMMENTARY Paul is saying that Gentiles, who were not even striving to obtain righteousness, have grasped it. He does not mean by this that there was no desire or longing for righteousness among the Gentiles, but that, as contrasted with the legalistic Jews, they were not ostensibly seeking for it. Yet when salvation was offered to them in the gospel, they welcomed it.

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