Romans 9 Free Will and Choice

Devotional Notes Romans 9
B1 What does this mean?
C1 Paul’s Desire for All Israel To Be Saved
D1 Paul’s desire for Israel to believe in Messiah is very deep. Compare Moses’ attitude: Exodus 32:32-33 NRSV But now, if you will only forgive their sin—but if not, blot me out of the book that you have written.”33 But the LORD said to Moses, “Whoever has sinned against me I will blot out of my book.
D2 Paul lists many of the blessings of Israel.
D3 The greatest blessing is Messiah. Jesus (Yeshua) is the Messiah.
C2 God’s Plan to Choose Israel
D1 There is no automatic salvation just because a person is a Jew.
D2 A person is not saved by becoming a Jew.
D3 It is by faith, which is, believing God as Abraham did.
D4 If they believe, they are saved. If they refuse to believe, they are not [John 3:36]. It is the same for Gentiles. Heritage does not save.
D5 Verse 11, according to the context, the one who believes is saved, not heritage. God knew Jacob would believe and Esau would not. Esau and Jacob refer to nations not the individual.
E1 Two nations. God states to Rebekah that two nations are in her womb. God does not say two people. Personally, I don’t think of this passage as a promise. It is God stating a fact of what He (God) already knew. He knew Esau would be a rather worthless, selfish jerk. Genesis 25:23 NET and the LORD said to her, “Two nations are in your womb, and two peoples will be separated from within you. One people will be stronger than the other, and the older will serve the younger.
E2 Note the attitude of Esau. He could care less about his birthright, the birthright of the first born. This is important because of the promises given to Abraham. Esau is a despiser. Genesis 25:31-32 GNB92 Jacob answered, “I will give it to you if you give me your rights as the first-born son.” 32 Esau said, “All right! I am about to die; what good will my rights do me?
E3 The blessings to Abraham
F1 Blessings associated with God’s call and Abraham believing what God said: Genesis 17:6-8 NRSV I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. 7 I will establish my covenant between me and you, and your offspring after you throughout their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you. 8 And I will give to you, and to your offspring after you, the land where you are now an alien, all the land of Canaan, for a perpetual holding; and I will be their God.
F2 List: Genesis 12:1-3 NKJV Now the LORD had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, From your family And from your father’s house, To a land that I will show you. 2 I will make you a great nation; I will bless you And make your name great; And you shall be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.
G1 I will make you a great nation.
G2 I will bless you.
G3 I will make your name great.
G4 I will make you a blessing.
G5 I will bless those who bless you.
G6 I will curse the one who curses you.
G7 I will bless all families on the earth because of you (if we believe, we are saved like Abraham was).
F3 which then passed to Isaac the son of promise. The birthright in that time usually was to get a double portion of the inheritance. Genesis 21:12 NKJV But God said to Abraham, “Do not let it be displeasing in your sight because of the lad or because of your bondwoman. Whatever Sarah has said to you, listen to her voice; for in Isaac your seed shall be called.
F4 The birthright would have been Esau’s, but he would rather have a bowl of stew. The attitude of Esau is hard to understand that he would act this way. Genesis 25:34 NKJV And Jacob gave Esau bread and stew of lentils; then he ate and drank, arose, and went his way. Thus Esau despised his birthright.
G1 The Hebrew word for despised is בָּזָה bâzâh.
G2 It means despise, regard with contempt. So, it is something disgusting, worthless, hated, sneering at, having no value, etc.
G3 Verses:
H1 1 Samuel 17:42 AMPC and when the Philistine looked around and saw David, he scorned and despised him, for he was but an adolescent, with a healthy reddish color and a fair face.
H2 Nehemiah 2:19 UKJV But when Sanballat the Horonite, and Tobiah the servant, the Ammonite, and Geshem the Arabian, heard it, they laughed us to scorn, and despised us, and said, What is this thing that all of you do? will all of you rebel against the king?
H3 Psalm 22:6 NIV But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by everyone, despised by the people.
H4 No person ever has, is, or will live who is more despised than Messiah, Yeshua, Jesus Christ: Isaiah 53:3 NLT He was despised and rejected—a man of sorrows, acquainted with deepest grief. We turned our backs on him and looked the other way. He was despised, and we did not care.
H5 Such was the attitude of Esau. God knew and thus rejected him.
F4 Isaac’s blessing to Jacob (whom he thought was Esau) is Genesis 27:27-29 NKJV And he came near and kissed him; and he smelled the smell of his clothing, and blessed him and said: “Surely, the smell of my son Is like the smell of a field Which the LORD has blessed. 28 Therefore may God give you Of the dew of heaven, Of the fatness of the earth, And plenty of grain and wine. 29 Let peoples serve you, And nations bow down to you. Be master over your brethren, And let your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be everyone who curses you, And blessed be those who bless you!
F5 Note Isaac’s words to Esau concerning who would be master over the clan:
G1 Genesis 27:37 NET2 Isaac replied to Esau, “Look! I have made him lord over you. I have made all his relatives his servants and provided him with grain and new wine. What is left that I can do for you, my son?
G2 The blessing itself: Genesis 27:39-40 NET2 So his father Isaac said to him, “See here, your home will be by the richness of the earth, and by the dew of the sky above. 40 You will live by your sword but you will serve your brother. When you grow restless, you will tear off his yoke from your neck.”
H1 The above happened here: 2 Kings 8:20-22 NET2 During his reign Edom freed themselves from Judah’s control and set up their own king. 21 Joram crossed over to Zair with all his chariots. The Edomites, who had surrounded him, attacked at night and defeated him and his chariot officers. The Israelite army retreated to their homeland. 22 So Edom has remained free from Judah’s control to this very day. At that same time Libnah also rebelled.
F6 Some differences between Esau and Jacob
G1 Similarities
H1 Me first
H2 Evil
G2 Differences
H1 Esau
I1 Outdoor man. What we might call a mountain man. He is a hunter.
I2 We can learn from his example of failure.
J1 Being impulsive is unwise.
J2 Instant gratification may be a disaster (he lost the birthright).
J3 Living for pleasure brings great losses (especially spiritual).
H2 Jacob
I1 Indoor man, that is a shepherd type rather than living in the wilderness.
I2 We can learn from his example of failure.
J1 Covetousness can be extremely dangerous and make powerful enemies. (Jacob did not have to demand the birthright from Esau. He simply could have helped his brother).
J2 Lying to receive great riches and power has long lasting and unforeseen problems.
D6 Verse 13, God did not hate Esau because of God’s choice. God hated the nation of Esau because Esau and his descendants hated God and Israel.
E1 Hebrews 12:16-17 NRSV See to it that no one becomes like Esau, an immoral and godless person, who sold his birthright for a single meal. 17 You know that later, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no chance to repent, even though he sought the blessing with tears.
E2 2 Chronicles 28:17 NRSV For the Edomites had again invaded and defeated Judah, and carried away captives.
E3 Joel 3:19 NRSV Egypt shall become a desolation and Edom a desolate wilderness, because of the violence done to the people of Judah, in whose land they have shed innocent blood.
E4 Amos 1:11 NIV This is what the LORD says: “For three sins of Edom, even for four, I will not relent. Because he pursued his brother with a sword and slaughtered the women of the land, because his anger raged continually and his fury flamed unchecked.
E6 God hated the nation.
D7 Verse 15, God’s mercy is on those who believe. It is not given by some choice or someone’s heritage.
E1 The Gospel is always the same.
E2 Abraham is our example: Genesis 15:6 NKJV and he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.
F1 Perhaps, I am making something out of nothing, but I think believes in the Lord is preferred. Adam Clarke comments:
And he believed in the Lord; and he counted it to him for righteousness—This I conceive to be one of the most important passages in the whole Old Testament. It properly contains and specifies that doctrine of justification by faith which engrosses so considerable a share of the epistles of St. Paul, and at the foundation of which is the atonement made by the Son of God: And he (Abram) believed האמן heemin, he put faith) in Jehovah, ויחשבה לו vaiyachshebeita lo, and he counted it—the faith he put in Jehovah, to Him for righteousness, צדקה tsedakah, or justification; though there was no act in the case but that of the mind and heart, no work of any kind. Hence the doctrine of justification by faith, without any merit of works; for in this case there could be none—no works of Abram which could merit the salvation of the whole human race. It was the promise of God which he credited, and in the blessedness of which he became a partaker through faith. See at Gen 15:19 (note); see also on Romans 4 (note). [Emphasis is mine].
F2 Habakkuk 2:4 ISV Notice their arrogance—they have no inward uprightness—but the righteous will live by their faith.
D8 Verse 17, we are not saved because of privilege. Pharaoh did not believe. Hardening is a punishment. Compare Romans 1:18-32 and Matthew 13:14-15. It is the same for all people as they refuse to give God credit for what things He has done and not being thankful. God healed Pharaoh and Egypt many times, but both refused to be thankful and repent (Romans 1:21). Pharaoh just kept hardening his heart until he had crossed the line of hope. For a search of some articles from the plain, normal sense (Arminian) see here. Also, foreknowledge does not guarantee causality.
D9 God does not make His decisions on some secret will. He makes His decisions based on wisdom, love, and holiness. If one rejects God’s ways after God opens their heart, then that one will suffer the consequences of that decision.
D10 In Romans chapters 9-11 specifically, Paul is speaking to Jews who thought they were guaranteed heaven because they were Jews. God wanted them to know that if they refuse God’s gospel, then He will harden them. Abraham believed; most Jews did not. Adam Clarke writes on verse 22: What if God, willing to show his wrath – The apostle refers here to the case of Pharaoh and the Egyptians, and to which he applies Jeremiah’s parable of the potter, and, from them, to the then state of the Jews. Pharaoh and the Egyptians were vessels of wrath – persons deeply guilty before God; and by their obstinate refusal of his grace, and abuse of his goodness, they had fitted themselves for that destruction which the wrath, the vindictive justice of God, inflicted, after he had endured their obstinate rebellion with much long-suffering; which is a most absolute proof that the hardening of their hearts, and their ultimate punishment, were the consequences of their obstinate refusal of his grace and abuse of his goodness; as the history in Exodus sufficiently shows. As the Jews of the apostle’s time had sinned after the similitude of the Egyptians, hardening their hearts and abusing his goodness, after every display of his long-suffering kindness, being now fitted for destruction, they were ripe for punishment; and that power, which God was making known for their salvation, having been so long and so much abused and provoked, was now about to show itself in their destruction as a nation. But even in this case there is not a word of their final damnation; much less that either they or any others were, by a sovereign decree, reprobated from all eternity; and that their very sins, the proximate cause of their punishment, were the necessary effect of that decree which had from all eternity doomed them to endless torments. As such a doctrine could never come from God, so it never can be found in the words of his apostle.
D11 In verse 22, the objects of wrath are maturing for destruction. Vincent’s Words Studies on this passage:
Fitted (κατηρτισμένα)
Lit., adjusted. See on mending, Mat 4:21; perfect, see on Matthew 21:16; see on Luke 6:40; see on 1 Peter 5:10. Not fitted by God for destruction, but in an adjectival sense, ready, ripe for destruction, the participle denoting a present state previously formed, but giving no hint of how it has been formed. An agency of some kind must be assumed. That the objects of final wrath had themselves a hand in the matter may be seen from 1 Thessalonians 2:15, 1 Thessalonians 2:16. That the hand of God is also operative may be inferred from the whole drift of the chapter. “The apostle has probably chosen this form because the being ready certainly arises from a continual reciprocal action between human sin and the divine judgment of blindness and hardness. Every development of sin is a net-work of human offenses and divine judgments” (Lange).
D12 Verse 23: God has plans.
D13 Objects of mercy are those who complied with God’s conditions of His Gospel. Objects of mercy not receiving mercy because of privilege or heritage.
C3 Israel Did Not Believe
D1 Verse 30 makes it clear that righteousness is because of faith, not privilege or heritage.
E1 Philippians 3:9 GW and to have a relationship with him. This means that I didn’t receive God’s approval by obeying his laws. The opposite is true! I have God’s approval through faith in Christ. This is the approval that comes from God and is based on faith.
E2 Galatians 2:15-16 GW We are Jewish by birth, not sinners from other nations. 16 Yet, we know that people don’t receive God’s approval because of their own efforts to live according to a set of standards, but only by believing in Jesus Christ. So we also believed in Jesus Christ in order to receive God’s approval by faith in Christ and not because of our own efforts. People won’t receive God’s approval because of their own efforts to live according to a set of standards.
D2 Jesus is a stumbling stone because He taught one is saved by faith, by believing in God and His message. He taught one is NOT saved by keeping the Law.
C3 Summary:
D1 Salvation is not from:
E1 Privilege, position, socioeconomic status, etc.
E2 Heritage, relationships, etc.
E3 Works, that is, keeping God’s law perfectly in thoughts, desires, words, and deeds. Romans 3:28.
D2 Salvation is from:
E1 The Gospel, which is the teachings and life of Jesus Christ in His birth, ministry, death, resurrection, ascension, etc.
E2 Grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone.
E3 God’s mercy.
E4 It is evidenced by a more or less consistently changed life. James 2:18-20 NET But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith without works and I will show you faith by my works. 19 You believe that God is one; well and good. Even the demons believe that – and tremble with fear. 20 But would you like evidence, you empty fellow, that faith without works is useless?
E5 Hebrews 11:6 NIV and without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.
D3 We are taught there are two types of heritage
E1 Physical heritage with physical blessings.
F1 The blessings went from Abraham to Isaac to Jacob.
F2 There are physical deliverances but not necessarily spiritual.
F3 This is physical salvation as
G1 Galatians 3:12 NIV the law is not based on faith; on the contrary, it says, “The person who does these things will live by them.
E2 Spiritual heritage with spiritual blessing.
F1 The blessings went from Abraham to all those who believe like Abraham believed.
F2 There are spiritual deliverances but not necessarily physical.
F3 This is spiritual salvation as grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone.
G1 Galatians 3:11 NIV Clearly no one who relies on the law is justified before God, because “the righteous will live by faith.
G2 Grace alone: Romans 3:24 NIV and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.
G3 Faith alone:
H1 Ephesians 2:8-9 NIV for it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
H2 John 3:18 WEL the one who believes in him is not condemned, but the one who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
G4 Jesus Christ alone: Acts 4:12 NIV Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.
B2 How do I apply this to my life? Thank you, O Lord, that I am included because of your mercy.
Posted by Choco at 15:02 on 27 Jul 20
Labels: Choice, Epistle of Romans, Salvation, Romans 9


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