2 Chronicles 22:1-23:21; Romans 11:22-36; Psalms 22:25-26; Proverbs 10:10
NT: “I don’t want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers and sisters, so that you will not be conceited: A partial hardening has come upon Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in… Regarding the gospel, they are enemies for your advantage, but regarding election, they are loved because of the patriarchs, since God’s gracious gifts and calling are irrevocable. As you once disobeyed God but now have received mercy through their disobedience, so they too have now disobeyed, resulting in mercy to you, so that they also may now receive mercy. For God has imprisoned all in disobedience so that he may have mercy on all. Oh, the depth of the riches and the wisdom and the knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments and untraceable his ways! …For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever. Amen.” (Romans 11:25, 28-33, 36 CSB)
According to Paul, the current hardness of Jews toward Jesus and the gospel is not permanent… and God has not written off the Jewish people. The message of the gospel was given to the Jews first – and because of their hardness of heart toward the gospel, attention was turned to evangelizing the gentile world. That has not changed God’s heart toward His elect people. Though they are “enemies” of the gospel, they are beloved by God. God is unchanging, His covenant is everlasting, and His words are sure. God has graced and called the nation of Israel, not because of what they have done or not done – but because of His commitment to His promise of blessing. Even though the nation of Israel may not be walking in their grace and calling, that does not mean God has revoked His call. A day will come when Israel’s eyes will be opened, and scores of Jews will recognize Jesus as Messiah and place their faith on Him for salvation. Then the blessing that God promised to flow through them to the world will be restored.
What an encouraging truth that is for us – that God’s gracious gifts and calling will not be revoked. Can we fall out of grace? Yes we can – in the same way that the Jewish people fell out of grace: through unbelief, disobedience and hardness of heart. In fact, a time will come – and may even be happening now – when great numbers of the gentile church will become apostate and fall from grace. But even in our falling, God does not revoke His offering of grace nor His calling on our lives. Restoration is always available through our humility, repentance and return to faith and obedience. God’s calling is based on grace through faith, not on our “goodness.” Lack of faith brings about a lack of grace which results in disobedience. However, when we humble ourselves, repent and place our faith on the Lord, grace is restored and obedience flourishes into blessing.
Oh the wisdom of God!! Only He could devise so perfect a plan to completely defeat the enemies of our soul and bring salvation to all while remaining just, merciful and faithful to all His words in the process. From Him, through Him and to Him are all things. Therefore, He deserves all glory forever. Let it be so.