14 July 2013
While it may seem in our day and age that God has handed Israel a permanent red card knocking them out of the salvation game forever, we have to ask ourselves – is this Biblically true? Paul makes the case that it isn’t by speaking of God's sovereignty on behalf of the elect (chapter 9) and of man’s responsibility to respond to this election (chapter 10). Now, in chapter 11, he focuses on God’s plan (present and future) for Israel. But before we go any further, we could well ask – if this chapter is for Israel, what does it have to do with us?
For one, if there was ever an unambiguous demonstration of God’s
protection of Israel, this is it. Despite holocausts and anti-Israel
governments, Israel continues to thrive. What’s more, this God of Israel is also our God.
If He ever went back on His promises we would never be able to trust him. But
as it stands, this passage shows us that the God of israel can be trusted. He
has fulfilled all that he said He would do. Which means that we can expect Him
to fulfil all that He said He will do.
To be sure, He has disciplined Israel. But He has not rejected them forever. And in the text before us, Paul backs up his argument with three proofs that God will remain true to His covenant with Israel.
1. Paul gives personal proof that God’s discipline of Israel is
restricted (vs 1)
2. Paul gives remnant proof that God’s discipline of Israel is restricted (vs 2-7a)
3. Hardened hearts are proof that God’s discipline of Israel is restricted (vs 7b-10)