The Remnant (Romans 11)

God continually preserves a remnant people.

1. The nation of Israel terminated its role as God's chosen light-bearer.

They rejected and crucified Jesus. (Mt 21:33-41,43, Jn 19:14-16)

They rejected the post-resurrection gospel message. (Ac 7:51-60 - Ac 8:1-3, Ac 22:17-21)

Their house was left desolate. (Mt 23:37,38)

God's purposes are continued through spiritual Israel. (Hos 1:9,10, Hos 2:23, Zec 2:10,11, Ro 9:25,26, Eph 1:10,11, 1Pe 2:9,10)

Spiritual Israel is the spiritual community made up of all those who accept Jesus as Saviour and Lord. (Da 12:1 compare Rev 21:27, Ro 2:28,29, Ro 4:9-13, Ro 9:6-8, Ro 10:12,13, Gal 3:7-9,14,26-29, Gal 6:14-16, Eph 2:11-13,19,20)

Ethnic Jews can still be saved just like any other person. (Jn 3:16, Ac 10:34,35, Ro 3:29,30)

2-4. In ancient Israel, in the time of greatest apostasy, God preserved His remnant. (see 1Ki 19:10,18)

Note: 7,000 = 7 x 1000 = 7 x 10 x 10 x 10 = 7 x 10 to the 3rd power.

7 = Sabbath, 10 = God's law (Ten Commandments), 3 = God (Father, Son, Holy Spirit)

The remnant do not worship any counterfeit god. (compare Da 3:16-18, Rev 13:11-15, Rev 14:9-12)

5. God continually preserves a remnant people.

God's will is to have a people. (Rev 21:3)

His people are His servants, His friends, His children. (Rev 22:3,4, Jn 15:15, Jn 1:12,13)

Remnant - "Residue; that which is left after the separation, removal or destruction of a part." (Webster's Dictionary 1828)

Note: A remnant is like the original. It remains.

The remnant is by grace, which is through faith, not works. (Eph 2:8,9)

The remnant keep the commandments of God. (Rev 12:17, Rev 14:12, Rev 22:14)

They keep God's commandments because of their faith and love for Jesus. (Jn 14:15, Ro 3:31, 1Jn 5:3)

6. God's election (vote) is not based on works (merit).

The term "election" is best understood as a vote cast by God for the salvation of every person, with the condition that this free, unmerited gift is individually accepted.

God offers salvation to everyone (without exception) as a free gift. (Jn 3:16, Jn 6:40, Jn 7:37, Ro 5:18, Ro 10:13, Eph 1:4,5, 2Th 2:13, 1Ti 2:3-6, 1Jn 2:2, Rev 22:17)

7. Israel identified as "he" is a parallel between Jacob (Israel), the person, and Israel the nation.

Jacob sought to be blessed by God. (Ge 32:24-30)

Blessing - "Among the Jews, a present; a gift; ..." (Webster's Dictionary 1828) (compare Ge 33:9-11)

The greatest blessing of God is the gift of God--eternal life through Jesus Christ. (Ro 6:23)

Note: "Jesus" means "Jehovah is salvation". (compare Mt 1:21)

Israel, as a nation, did not obtain salvation because they rejected and crucified the Son of God.

Therefore, "the election" here is clearly identified with all those who obtain salvation.

Those who reject Christ are depicted as being spiritually blind since they chose darkness over light. (Jn 3:19-21)

8. When persons repeatedly reject God's message, He allows them to experience the consequences of their disobedience.

In this sense, He gives them over to their chosen condition. (Dt 29:2-4, Isa 29:10, Eze 12:2, Mt 13:15)

9. Table - What is eaten (physically and mentally). (compare Pr 23:7)

Sin will trap you in a cage of consequences. (Gal 6:7)

Sin will cause you to fall, to decline, to deteriorate. (Rev 18:1-4)

Sin will destroy your soul. (Ro 6:23, Rev 20:14,15)

This quotation from David is a prophetic reference to those who crucified Christ. (Ps 69:21,22 compare Mt 27:34)

10. Darkened eyes - Closed eyes keep out light.

Bowed backs - Sin is a crushing weight. (compare Mt 11:28)

11. The Jews (as a nation) stumbled and fell when they rejected Jesus. (1Co 1:23)

It was not God's purpose, intent, or will for the nation of Israel to fall.

But, given that they had fallen, God used their fall first for the good of the Gentiles, and, subsequently, for the Jews themselves.

12. If God can use disobedience for good, imagine how much more He will do with those who obey. (Ac 5:32, Ro 8:28)

13-14. Paul, as an apostle to the Gentiles, still hopes to affect unbelieving Jews, indirectly, through the fruits of his ministry. (compare Ac 22:17-21)

15. If God can use rejection for good, imagine how much more He will do with those who return to Him. (Lk 15:11-32)

16. God alone is holy. (Rev 15:4)

God wants us to be holy as well. (Lev 11:45, Lev 19:2, Eph 1:4, Eph 5:27)

We become holy only as we allow Jesus to live in us. (Jn 17:20-23, Ro 8:9, 1Co 3:16, Gal 4:6, Col 1:27,28)

Jesus is the root and we are His branches. (Jn 15:4,5, Ro 15:12, Rev 5:5, Rev 22:16)

17-19. Christians are warned against pride and over confidence in themselves. (Ro 3:27, 1Co 10:12, Jas 4:6, 1Pe 5:5)

20. Through unbelief in Jesus, the Jews become disconnected from God.

We should rather focus our confidence on Him in Whom we believe. (Mt 14:25-31)

It is only through faith that we are able to stand. (Rev 6:17 compare Rev 7:9-14)

We are advised to maintain our standing with cautionary fear. (Php 2:12)

21-22. "Once saved, always saved" is a false concept.

Through unbelief and rebellion, we can again become disconnected from God.

A person's name can be blotted out of the Book of Life. (Ex 32:33, Ps 69:27,28, Rev 3:5)

A person can lose his/her place in Heaven. (Rev 22:19)

A person can willfully turn away and be lost. (Eze 18:24, Eze 33:13, 1Co 9:27, 1Co 10:11,12, Heb 6:4-6, Heb 10:26-29, 2Pe 2:20-22, 2Pe 3:17)

Our election requires our continued diligence. (2Pe 1:4-10)

We must continue to follow Jesus to the end. (Mt 24:13, Jn 15:5,6, Col 1:21-23, Heb 3:6,12-15, Jas 1:12, 1Pe 4:17-19)

23-24. If someone falls away, but then returns again, God will forgive and restore them. (Isa 44:21,22, Mal 3:7, Lk 15:18-24)

25. Blindness in part - Not all of the native Israelites were blinded; some believed and were saved. (compare "some of the branches be broken off" Ro 11:17).

The blindness of the nation of Israel will continue to the very end when Jesus returns.

This is because the "fulness of the Gentiles" coincides with that end. (Mt 24:14).

26. All of true, spiritual Israel (the tree--God's people) will be saved.

Some of the original branches (native Israelites) were cut off from the tree.

New branches (spiritual Israelites) were grafted into the tree.

Jacob represents Israel (both native and spiritual) (Ge 32:28).

Zion represents Jerusalem as God's people, the church. (Joel 3:17, Zep 3:14, Zec 8:3, Zec 9:9 compare Mt 21:1-5, Heb 12:22,23 compare Rev 21:1-3)

Jesus is the Deliverer. (Ps 18:2)

27. In God's covenant, He is the agent that removes sin.

Through His crucifixion, Jesus paid the pemalty for our sins. (1Pe 2:24)

Through His loving, personal relationship with us, Jesus transforms our sinful nature into His righteous character. (Jn 17:3, 2Co 3:18, Heb 8:10, 1Jn 3:4-6)

28. As God's chosen people, the Jews were supposed to share God's truth with the whole world. (2Ch 6:32,33, Isa 62:1,2, Jer 33:7-9)

Instead, the Jews selfishly and pridefully viewed others as unclean outsiders whom they avoided. (Isa 65:2-5, Hos 10:1)

With love, God remembered His promises to the patriarchs (the fathers). (Ge 12:1,2, Ge 46:1-3, Ex 2:23-25, 1Ki 11:11-13)

With longsuffering, God continued His patient plan of working through the Jewish nation. (Ex 34:6, Jer 4:14, Ps 86:15)

When Jesus came, He continued to focus His message on the Jews. (Mt 10:5,6) (compare Mt 17:17)

The Jews violently rejected the good news by crucifying God's Son. (Jn 19:15)

After His resurrection, the gospel was still initially focused on the Jews. (Ac 1:8, Ac 2:14,36-39)

After His resurrection, when the Jewish leaders again violented rejected the gospel, it was taken directly to the Gentiles. (Ac 7:51-60 - Ac 8:1, Ac 22:12-21)

The Gentiles replaced the Jews as God's elected messengers of the gospel. (Mt 21:37-41,43, Mt 23:37,38) (compare Mt 21:18,19, Lk 13:6-9)

29. God will not change His mind about His plan to have a people. (Lev 26:12, Isa 32:17,18, Isa 65:17,22, Rev 18:4, Rev 21:2,3)

Since God's will is perfect, He does not change. (Ps 89:34, Mal 3:6, Ro 12:2, Heb 13:8)

However, sin-infected, human will is susceptible to turning away from God. (Jer 4:1, Mal 3:7, Heb 6:4-6, Rev 2:1-5)

30. God used the Jews' violent unbelief as a vehicle to spread the gospel to the Gentiles. (Ac 8:1-4)

31. God used the Gentiles' belief as a vehicle to spread the gospel even among the Jews. (compare Ac 28:17-24, 1Co 1:23,24 and 1Co 9:20)

32. God allows all men to choose their path and see firsthand the fruits thereof. (Jer 18:9-17)

Note: Concluded - "Shut" (Webster's Dictionary 1828)

The usage here is to enclose them all about with the natural consequences of their choices. God does this by allowing sin to exist and mature, rather than immediately destroying it along with the sinner. When they are shut in a room of consequences, face-to-face with vanity and hopelessness, perhaps they will awaken and repent.

33. God is all knowing. (1Sa 16:7, Ps 94:11, Ps 139:1-16, Mt 10:29,30, Jn 4:17,18,28,29, Heb 4:13, 1Jn 3:20)

God's is all wise. (Ro 16:27, 1Ti 1:17, Jude 1:24,25)

Human knowledge is far below God's knowledge. (Job 38:19-21, Isa 40:28, Isa 55:8,9)

Human wisdom and knowledge, in themselves, are troubling and misleading. (Ecc 1:16-18, Isa 5:21, 1Co 3:19)

Human knowledge will pass away. (1Co 13:8)

Although we may not be able to fully understand them, God's decisions (judgments) are just. (Dt 32:4, Rev 15:3)

God helps us to understand to the extent we are capable in this world. (Pr 3:5, 1Co 13:12, Jas 1:5)

The most important knowledge we can possess is to know God. (Mt 2:1,2, Jn 14:21,23, Jn 17:3, 2Ti 3:15, 1Jn 3:5,6)

34. We cannot know God's mind except as He reveals Himself to us. (compare 1Co 2:16, Col 1:26,27, Heb 8:10)

We cannot counsel God. On the contrary, he counsels us. (Isa 1:18, Isa 9:6, Jn 14:26, Rev 3:17,18)

35. Anything we give to God is simply returning what is already His. (Ps 24:1, Mal 3:8, 1Co 6:19,20)

God has graciously commissioned us as stewards of His material and spiritual possessions. (Ge 1:28, 1Co 4:1, 1Pe 4:10)

36. All things are "of Him" - He is the Creator. (Ge 1:1, Col 1:16, Heb 1:1-3)

All things are "through Him" - He is the Saviour. (Jn 10:9, Jn 14:6, Php 3:9, Col 1:14)

All things are "to Him" - He is the Lord. (Mk 12:17, Ac 26:19,20, Php 2:11, Jas 4:7, Ro 6:21,22)