God's Faithfulness: Romans 9:1-29



This morning I have titled that sermon, God’s Faithfulness, but to be more accurate, God is faithful because His choices and decision are far better and more complete than any of us can imagine.
Stand with me if you are able as we look into God’s Word and read today’s passage
Romans 9:1–29 ESV
1 I am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit— 2 that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. 4 They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. 5 To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen. 6 But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For not all who are descended from Israel belong to Israel, 7 and not all are children of Abraham because they are his offspring, but “Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.” 8 This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring. 9 For this is what the promise said: “About this time next year I will return, and Sarah shall have a son.” 10 And not only so, but also when Rebekah had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, 11 though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad—in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of him who calls— 12 she was told, “The older will serve the younger.” 13 As it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.” 14 What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! 15 For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” 16 So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy. 17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.” 18 So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills. 19 You will say to me then, “Why does he still find fault? For who can resist his will?” 20 But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me like this?” 21 Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use? 22 What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, 23 in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory— 24 even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles? 25 As indeed he says in Hosea, “Those who were not my people I will call ‘my people,’ and her who was not beloved I will call ‘beloved.’ ” 26 “And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ there they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’ ” 27 And Isaiah cries out concerning Israel: “Though the number of the sons of Israel be as the sand of the sea, only a remnant of them will be saved, 28 for the Lord will carry out his sentence upon the earth fully and without delay.” 29 And as Isaiah predicted, “If the Lord of hosts had not left us offspring, we would have been like Sodom and become like Gomorrah.”
Let’s Pray

Paul’s Concern for His People

Have you ever had a day were sad emotions come to your spirit.
Have you ever had the day where you just seem to be overwhelmed with sorrow, and you can’t quite put your finger on it.
You wonder why?
In those moments or days, do you turn to God for guidance and peace?
The Book of Romans was inspired by God written through a man’s listening to the spirit, but it also was written with the emotion and passion of a man chosen by God.
This man was raised and taught in the ways of Judaism. He was raised with a cultural understanding and was bias for His race, that of a Jew.
He was taught in the finest of schools, given the greatest praise of the day.
If Saul, was in this world today, He would have been requested to show up for all the latest and greatest talk shows in the country.
His podcasts would have reached almost every Jewish household in the country.
But God called him out for a different purpose.
The children this morning are in fact learning this story and if you are a parent, I encourage you to find out and make sure that they know the person they learned about this morning was the same person who wrote this scripture we are studying this morning.
This upbringing developed in him a passion like now other and now he was called by God to reach the unreachable.
The Gentiles.
The ones despised by the Jewish people.
The Chosen race to bring forth the saviour of the world, were now seeing the result of that calling.
The messiah had come. He was from them. He came not only to save the Jewish people, but all of mankind.
He came to save us.
In God’s eyes, the lines that were once clearly draw were now removed.
Open for all. A saviour for All.
For Paul, this was a moment of excitement that the chosen race he was a part of, now brought forth the blessing of God.
This should be the same excitement in our lives that we have in our hands God’s truth for all of mankind.
With full passion comes full melancholy.
Not a melancholy for himself but for his fellow Jews who could not or would not accept this grace for all.
Romans 9:2 ESV
2 that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart.
This sorrow and anguish was not of something missing in his life, rather that which was missing in his kinsman.
The very people who should know better.
The long awaited messiah had come. He was there.
He was real and yet his fellow kinsman have missed it.
I heard this story, legend, many years ago
A father said to his daughter “You have graduated with honors, here is a car I bought many years ago. It is pretty old now. But before I give it to you, take it to the used car lot downtown and tell them I want to sell it and see how much they offer you for it.”
The daughter went to the used car lot, returned to her father and said, “They offered me $1,000 because the said it looks pretty worn out.”
The father said, now “Take it to the pawn shop.” The daughter went to the pawn shop, returned to her father and said,”The pawn shop offered only $100 because it is an old car.”
The father asked his daughter to go to a car club now and show them the car. The daughter then took the car to the club, returned and told her father, “Some people in the club offered $100,000 for it because it’s a Nissan Skyline R34, it’s an iconic car and sought by many collectors!”
Now the father said this to his daughter, “The right place values you the right way. If you are not valued, do not be angry, it means you are in the wrong place. Those who know your value are those who appreciate you…Never stay in a place where no one sees your value.”
Paul’s passion was that his fellow kinsman know the value of their heritage and yet at the same time come to an awareness of God’s plan of Christ’s work on the cross.

Passion for the Lost

Paul’s passion for his kinsman was shown so powerfully in his analogy that He would
Romans 9:3 ESV
3 For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh.
People who by being born into a Jewish home, a people called by God to bring a blessing. Yet a people group who were missing that blessing in their own lives.
How strong is our passion for the lost family in our lives?
To what extent are we willing to go so that our loved ones will come to a saving knowledge of Christ.
What is it going to cost us?
It broke the heart of Paul knowing that the treasure his kinsman had,
The actual people called by God, now miss the true calling of God.
God’s redemptive plan, did not begin with Christ.
It was fulfilled with Christ.
The entire old Testament is the story of God working through His chosen people to bring about Christ to the World.
I read a great story this week
Encyclopedia of 7700 Illustrations 1881 That Boy in Organ Loft

When Robert Moffat, Scottish missionary to South Africa, came back to recruit helpers in his homeland, he was greeted by the fury of a cold British winter. Arriving at the church where he was to speak he noted that only a small group had braved the elements to hear his appeal. What disturbed him even more was that there were only ladies in attendance that night, for he had chosen as his text Proverbs 8:4, “Unto you, O men, I call.”

In his consternation he almost failed to notice one small boy in the loft who had come to work the bellows of the organ. Dr. Moffat felt hopeless as he gave the message, realizing that few women could be expected to undergo the rigorous experiences they would face in the undeveloped jungles of the continent where he labored.

But God works in mysterious ways to carry out His wise purposes. Although no one volunteered, the young fellow assisting the organist was thrilled by the challenge. Deciding that he would follow in the footsteps of this pioneer missionary, he went on to school, obtained a degree in medicine, and then spent the rest of his life ministering to the unreached tribes of Africa. His name: David Livingstone!

—Our Daily Bread

Paul too was saddened by his Kinfolk as they didn’t hear the message being told to them throughout the generations.
A story of God’s Calling on the lives of people.
And he could proclaim with great passion in verse 6
Rom 9:5 “5 To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen.”

The Call of God

Paul then moves onto the Call of God.
He begins with the word we often don’t want to hear
A change in the story,
A direction movement that would take Paul’s conversation of what he would like to see happen and the reality of the Faithfulness of God.
Paul decided to take his readers through a reminder or history lesson of the faithfulness of God.
No, God’s plan hadn’t changed and therefore Christ came to this world.
It wasn’t that God’s chosen people had rejected the messiah, so he changed plans.
The Call of God was right from the beginning. His purpose and direction was laid out from the beginning, to be honest, as a finite being, this is a hard concept to handle without faith.
Paul asks a rhetorical question,
“Has the Word of God failed?”
Look at the text, NO!
It’s a reminder of God’s choosing.
God came to Abraham. His chosen one. Called out one.
Was given a promise that all blessings would come from His family for everyone.
Some in the line were not chosen, some were.
The line of succession didn’t take a path that we a humans would map out.
In fact, the succession plan did quite the opposite than what was in the culture of the day.
Have you noticed how many stories there are of not the first born being elevated over the second.
Ishmael and Issac, Esau and Jacob, Joseph over his Brothers, yet the lineage was carried out through Judah and not Reuben.
And that pathway is only made its way through Genesis.
Even in the New Testament, Jesus uses a fine example of the prodigal son, to show that God’s favour is His choice. Although everyone is equal in the sight of God.
God does not want any to perish, but Paul points out the fact that

God’s Free Choice

God has given both Free choice to man and in a way God has free choice to choose not from privilege, but rather of blessing.
Look at verse 8
Romans 9:8 ESV
8 This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring.
one person wrote,

The Word of God speaks powerfully about God’s complete freedom to act as He chooses. This is clearly illustrated in His dealings with Israel in general and the lineage of Christ through Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in particular.

You see God’s blessing and choice of who will receive this blessing is entirely up to God.
For some people, they look at this passage and attempt to claim God is a vengeful God.
A God that would hold ones own choice of man against him and therefore reject him.
God’s free choice of claiming those of His own is based not on God’s expectation of man, rather their willingness to submit to the sovereignty of God.
Let me explain,
One of the distinctiveness of the Free Church, this church you belong to and fellowship with came out of a state church.
A group of believers were in a state run church, a church that believed you belonged to God just because you were born into this state.
Like a Jewish child being born into the family immediately received all the spiritual blessing because of their family status.
The beginning movement of this church began as they broke Free from the state and realized that one must Choose to accept the free gift of God’s grace in their lives.
They broke Free from the church and started a movement now called the Evangelical Free Church.
Paul in this chapter is pointing out the same concept to those of the Jewish upbringing who had accepted Jesus, but were struggling with the concept of this grace being for all.
Jews and gentiles alike.

Not Chosen and God’s Purpose with them

That doesn’t mean that God’s purpose doesn’t fall onto those who are not seemingly being blessed.
Paul introduces the concept of election in verse 11.
A theological concept argued over the ages as to how to understand God’s Call for eternity on the life of mankind.
Now if you are sitting here this morning and have never read or been taught on election, I will attempt, and make come short of a clear presentation of the idea as it is filled with complexities; however let me say this.

Election is the doctrine concerning God’s divine choice of some individuals out of all mankind to become His own through regeneration and salvation. Election has to be related to but distinguished from God’s decrees in general, predestination, foreordination and foreknowledge.

Election deals with the concepts of how does one become saved.
It raises a question
do all become saved or can some never become saved by God’s Grace.
Is God’s election based upon His infinite being compared to our finite being?
He knows who will be chosen because He knew who would choose Christ grace on the cross.
With this strict understanding of the doctrine of election, there comes some dangers people conclude in the topic of election.
First, there is nothing I can do apart from God electing me to receive salvation. I was either chosen or not.
Second, there is not point in reaching out to the world of God’s Gospel because God has already decided upon who will or will not be saved.
I would simply state that God’s elect is arrived not simply by God knowing who will or will not, that is foreknowledge,
But that God also give mankind a choice and knows that choice.
once said,

The Scriptures teach that God takes up what man will do in his freedom, and adds to this what He will do in His grace to save a man, to make effective His election of an individual.

Who then is Called

There are two types of Calls,
A general call for all
Isaiah 55:1 ESV
1 “Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.
or also Jesus said,
Matthew 11:28 ESV
28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
This is where our part of election comes into play.
We need to go out into the world and make others aware of God’s Calling on their life.
God could do it on His own; however, He has asked us to partner with Him to fulfill his great commission of reaching the lost.
We are to be Sharing The Gospel, the good news of Christ in people’s lives.
The second type of Call of God is efficacious (Ef- i Kay shish).
a word, not used regularly used but describes the ability to fulfill a purpose or plan.
Jesus stated that
John 6:37 ESV
37 All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.
Or as Paul stated in
Romans 8:29 ESV
29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
So you may be asking Who then is called and how can I understand election.
Can I give you an example that may seem clear to you.
Imagine you want to work in a company. You are wondering how people get hired and are employees of that company.
Well the first is related to to the family that owns the company.
Right from the time of diapers, they would walk the halls of the company as they tagged along with their parents looking forward to the day that they too will work in that business.
Then there are the other workers, who hear about the company and it’s values and purpose. Are thrilled with the idea of working there and come to a place of entering into the business through a process we call hiring.
One was a general call to work their while the other was a efficacious (Ef- i Kay shish).
In both workers of the company, the owner, is the one who picked who would be in the company.
And the owner picked because of the choice of the individual to want to work there.

What is our response

So what should be our response.
Paul spend much time in pointing out that like us, we need to choose to follow Christ.
God is faithful and full of compassion for all, yet there is a part on us to take the step and follow him.
In verses 14-22 Paul argues his point of election is not about who isn’t going to make it into Heaven, well knowing that there are those who, like his kinsman that he was weeping and lamenting on early will not, rather God’s grace will be all the more glorious.
Romans 9:23 ESV
23 in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory—
What is our response.
Well, you need to respond to God’s grace and allow it to come into your life.
I see two different types of people that need to respond.
Like the analogy of the worker in the business I stated earlier, the child of the owner, may have walked the halls of the business, but has never taken steps to do anything in the business. They want all the benefits of the company, but never take on the business.
It is like the person who has been raised in the church, their parents have faithfully brought them to church, but have never taken the steps to call this their own business or what we call
Accepting Chris as their own, and not that of their parents.
If you are hear this morning and maybe have been coming for years, and you know all the right things to say, but haven’t truly accepted Christ for your own, why not do it today.
Maybe folks around you have thought you are a follower of Christ but you haven’t accepted His grace, why not do that today.
Or maybe you walk the halls of the business in my illustration, as one who has come well because your family member has brought you.
This requires you also to make that commitment.
To come to the throne of God’s grace and ask Him to forgive you of your sin, to enter into a new relationship with God and to allow the Spirit of God to come into your life to make your life knew.
Because when you do this, Paul reminds us in these words.
Romans 9:25–26 ESV
25 As indeed he says in Hosea, “Those who were not my people I will call ‘my people,’ and her who was not beloved I will call ‘beloved.’ ” 26 “And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ there they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’ ”
When you choose to accept God’s free Grace in your life, Christ’s work changes your eternal destiny and you will be called Sons of the living God.
Have you done that, Today is the day, why wait?

In Summary

As the worship team comes forward to lead us in a response to all that we did this morning in worship, let me remind you of the need to come to Him.
During this song, if you need to bring before Him a prayer request, come and and ask for prayer. If you need to spend some time with Him, come and kneel before the alter of God’s grace. There is plenty of room for all to come.
If you need to come this morning to accept God’s grace today for your life, come.
Let’s sing,
By Faith

Response To Worship


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