Rabbi’s Reflections – Monday, August 14, 2023

One In Messiah part 37 – Romans, part 148

Romans 11:1 I say then, God has not rejected His people, has He? May it never be! For I too am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.

Let’s remember, Paul didn’t divide his letters into chapter and verse, he just wrote letters.  The divisions came along later.  Here (at the beginning of what is now chapter 11) he is continuing the thought we finished with last Friday (from the last verse of chapter 10).  Romans 10:21  But about Israel He says, “All day long I stretched forth My hands to a disobedient and contrary people.”

Paul wants to clear this up… God has reached out to a disobedient people.  Does that mean because they rejected Him that He will reject them?  Paul answers the question immediately, “May it never be!”  Yet, even today, there are many who believe exactly that.  God is raising up a body (bride) for Himself.  She will be made up of Jewish and non-Jewish people.

We read as much here… Ephesians 2:14 For He is… the One who made the two into one and broke down the middle wall of separation. 15… in order to create within Himself one new man from the two groups, making shalom, 16 and to reconcile both to God in one body through the cross….

And this is our testimony.  There is more evidence that God has not rejected Jewish people.  The modern state of Israel is a testimony to God’s faithfulness regarding His promises to our father, Abraham.  (I want to emphasize that this is a grace covenant.  Abraham didn’t work for it.)

Genesis 12:2 My heart’s desire is to make you into a great nation, to bless you, to make your name great so that you may be a blessing.

This covenant was reaffirmed many times, especially to the patriarchs.  Gen 13:16, Gen 15:5, Gen 17:5-6, Gen 18:18, Gen 22:17-18, Gen 24:35, Gen 26:4, Gen 27:29, Gen 28:3, Gen 28:14; Gen 35:11, Gen 46:3.  Micah also prophesied the continuity of this grace covenant in the last verse of his book.  Micah 7:20 You will extend truth to Jacob, mercy to Abraham, that You swore to our ancestors from the days of old.

The Bride of Messiah is a covenant Bride.  There is a stark contrast in Scripture between the Bride and the harlot.  Hosea prophesies strongly against Israel as the harlot in Hosea chapter 2, but the end of chapter 2 tells of God’s eternal faithfulness.

Hosea 2:21 Then I will betroth you to Me forever—yes, I will betroth you to Me with righteousness, justice, covenant loyalty and compassion. 22 I will betroth you to Me with faithfulness, and you will know Adonai.

I love a happy ending, don’t you?  Paul affirms that God will not reject His people, Israel.  Shalom shalom.

Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Mon 14 Aug 2023 27th of Av, 5783
De 17:14-20 Ez 47 1 Ch 26 2 Ti 4 (Jn 12:20-50)