All Israel Will be Saved

God's Choice

Pastor Jerry Gillis - June 12, 2022

Community Group Study Notes

  1. Have someone in your group give a brief recap of Sunday’s message, highlighting the primary Scripture passages and main idea of the message. 

  1. How has this message (or this message in combination with any other messages in this series) confirmed and/or corrected your previous ideas about God’s choice? 

  1. How has God been faithful to His promises in your life?  

  1. Do you have any friends, relatives, or acquaintances that are Jewish? How can you live as a humble witness to the gospel of Jesus to specifically reach these individuals?  

  1. What steps have you taken recently to cultivate a heart to share Jesus with people? Consider your time in prayer for those who are lost, time fostering relationships with those who are lost, and time sharing the gospel with those who are lost 

  1. In what ways can you apply today’s message to your life?  


Action Step 

  • This week, spend time journaling your personal witness. Consider the following steps: 

  • Spend time praising God and cultivating a heart of thankfulness:  

  • How has God been faithful to His promises?  

  • How has God been merciful?  

  • Now write your testimony:  

  • What was your life like before you knew and loved Jesus?  

  • How has your life changed since stepping into a saving relationship with Jesus? 

  • What is God doing in your life right now?  

  • Challenge yourself to share your written testimony with one friend this week.  


Mobilization Challenge 

Define mercy. How can you show compassion this week to someone around you? Pray and ask God to give you an opportunity to encourage someone this week who is hurting. Share your experience with your Community Group during your next meeting. 


Sermon Transcript

 I'm sure that if I asked everybody here your favorite story or your favorite movie, I would get as many opinions as there are people, I'm sure with a little bit of crossover, but I understand. But whatever your favorite movie or whatever your favorite story, my guess is, is that they all contain a similar story structure. I mean screenwriters today that are writing scripts have a basic story structure that has been around for a very long period of time. You could go back to the 4th Century BC and you could read Aristotle in his work called "Poetics", you're probably reading it here this week. I'm sure right before you came, you just dusted off a copy of a 4th Century BC book called, "Poetics" and was reading that. But nonetheless, he talks in there and he makes it very simple. He says that there must be a logical flow when you're telling a story. And that in telling that story, there needs to be a beginning or an introduction, there needs to be a middle, and there needs to be an end. This is really simple but screenwriters actually use the same formula now, they just call it something different. They talked about the set-up, the confrontation, and the resolution. That's kind of how basically most stories or movies that you see or hear, this is how they go, generally speaking. Now, as we are taking an opportunity to do a deep dive in Romans 9, 10 and 11, as we have been doing over the last number of weeks, what we're seeing is we're seeing really what I would consider a historical salvation drama unfolding before us. That's really kind of what we see. It ultimately is the story of God and His people. And this story is one that plays out in three different acts. And we've been looking at some of those already and we'll be looking at the third of those in our time together today. But take for a moment and just picture a dark stage. Mm-hmm. And then let's say for a moment that a spotlight comes up on that dark stage. And what God is doing among and through the people that He makes, He begins by doing with a man named Abraham and his wife, Sarah. Ultimately, through Abraham and Sarah would come a people called Israel. Now this would be a people that God would make a covenant with, God would choose Abraham not because of Abraham's worth, or character, or greatness, or awesomeness, no, it's because God made His own choice. By God's own wisdom and God's own love, He chose Abraham and Sarah and through them said, "I am going to bless you and you are going to be a blessing to the nations. You're going to have a child. And through this seed, we're going to see the rescue of the world ultimately." And that's exactly what began to happen through the patriarchs, through Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob. Now God has a people for Himself that He had called to be a blessing to the world, to demonstrate His glory in all of the nations. And so in act number one, what you see is God interacting with His people, Israel, that He has chosen for Himself. You see Him blessing them, correcting them, delivering them, walking with them, comforting them, rebuking them. All of this happens with Israel and God does this in act one of this historical salvation drama that we've been looking at in Romans 9, 10, and 11. But when act two happens, this is when Jesus, the Son of God, comes into the world as the promised Messiah. All through act number one to Israel, God was raising up prophets and was sharing about what was to come through the Messiah. And then Jesus does come, just as He had promised, just as God had promised to Israel, Jesus shows up and He is born of a virgin, lives a sinless life, He's communicating to everyone about the way of God; how people can be reconciled to God and enter into the kingdom of God, but largely, Israel rejected the offer of grace, that was being made to them, that people. Jesus was actually the true Israelite. He was everything that Israel could not and failed to be. Jesus became and He fully pleased God and demonstrated God's glory. But Israel as a whole, not everyone, but as a whole, largely rejected Him. And so because of Israel's rejection, Israel started moving out of the spotlight and God opened the door for the Gentiles to move into the spotlight so that God could now work through the Gentile people. Israel had not left the stage. But Israel was now in a secondary position where God in act number one, in this great historical salvation drama, was dealing predominantly with Israel as His people now because of Israel's rejection in act two. God blew open the door for the Gentiles to be able to experience life with God and, when believing, become a part of the people of God. It's a beautiful thing and the truth is, is that even right now where we live in this time and place, we are still in act two. But act three is coming. And what act three is, is that what's going to happen in act three when the fullness of the Gentiles comes in, when all the Gentiles that are destined to be saved are ultimately saved, then Israel now comes back into center stage and we now have this great turning of the people of Israel to the Messiah, the restoration of the people of Israel, the coming of the Lord Jesus, and now believing Gentiles and believing Jews together make up the one olive tree of the family of God. This is the beautiful picture, do you get it? Are you seeing it now? Mike, Scott, thank you guys very much, appreciate it. Glad you guys get along. And you are family anyway, so that works out really well. So there's the big picture of the kind of historical salvation drama that we've been looking at in Romans 9, 10, and 11. And today, even though earlier, we've been talking about act one and act two, today, we're talking about act three, right? So where we're going to see that is we're going to see that in Romans chapter 11. And in a moment we're going to be in verse 25 and following all the way down to verse 32. And how I've kind of outlined this for us to be able to put our minds around it a little bit, I've kind of outlined it by talking... I'm gonna talk about God's mystery, God's motive, and God's mercy. That's what I'm gonna talk about over the next few minutes, all right? So maybe it'll help us to order our thoughts but I'm literally gonna walk through the text and then we're gonna talk about what's our response to this teaching. 'Cause it is rich, it is deep as you found in Romans 9, 10, and 11 as we're going through it. You're kind of going, "Yep, my mind sometimes starts to melt a little bit." But I think we're gonna be able to put some handles on this and understand what's being said. The first truth that I wanna point out is God's mystery. And here it is, God's mystery: All Israel will be saved. God's mystery is that all Israel will be saved. Look in verses 25 through 27 of Romans chapter 11. Here's what it says: "I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers and sisters, so that you may not be conceited. Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in, and in this way, all Israel will be saved. As it is written. 'The deliverer will come from Zion; he will turn godlessness away from Jacob. And this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins.'" There's a lot here but Paul begins by simply saying, "I don't want you to be ignorant, my brothers and sisters, of this mystery." Now, when we hear the word mystery, particularly in the New Testament as Douglas Moo, a great scholar has pointed out, it really is about talking about special revelation. In other words, God has revealed something to His apostle that the apostle is now revealing to us. And generally speaking, when we hear this word mystery in the New Testament, we're also talking about apocalyptic kinds of language. Apocalyptic doesn't mean that things are being, it's crazy and everything's exploding, that's not what I'm talking about. Apocalyptic simply means it's talking about the end of all things and the coming of the Lord Jesus. That generally speaking, when we hear the term mystery, that's what we're hearing generally. So what he's talking about is this mystery that Israel is going to come back to the Messiah that they have rejected. Now, there's a couple of ideas, actually, three ideas under this idea of God's mystery that the text points out for us. And the first is this, we're told, "Don't be conceited," all right? Maybe you've heard that warning before, but the very beginning of verse 25, it says, "I don't want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers and sisters, so that you may not be conceited." If you remember just a few verses before last week when we were talking about verse 13 through verse 24 of Romans 11, we were being reminded in no uncertain terms by Paul, "Hey, Gentile, don't think that you're all that because you don't support the root; the root supports you." So don't think your superior, don't think that you are all of that like you're God's special, no, no, no, understand this. You don't have any right to be conceited or to be arrogant. You didn't start this train. This didn't begin with you. You weren't the beginning of the chosen people. You have been grafted in by God's grace and it's an act of His mercy. So we're told all over again not to be conceited because even though it looks right now, like Israel is hardened and they are blinded, they are coming back to Messiah at some point. So do not get full of yourselves. Secondly, Israel's salvation will occur after the full number of Gentiles comes in. I know you're going, "Jerry, can you shorten these a little bit? 'Cause, like, I'm writing these down." Some of you don't write anything down 'cause you think you remember and you don't. I know this is kind of long, right? Some of you think, "I've got a photographic memory," you don't have a photographic memory. Literally, you don't, so stop it. It's the Bob Newhart counsel I give you, just stop it. Anybody remember that? It was like three of you, which is awesome. I love it when jokes go great. Like not now. Israel's salvation will occur after the full number of Gentiles comes in. Look at the passage of Scripture again in verse number 25, "Israel has experienced a hardening in part," now notice this, "Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles comes in." So about their hardening, what we know is that it is temporary and it's partial, okay? Israel's hardening is temporary and it's partial. Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles comes in. So what does this mean, the full number of the Gentiles? Well, some could say that this is talking about the group as a whole, Gentiles as a whole, all of us who are non-Jews, that there's going to be a time where God determines that the non-Jews have gotten their opportunity now in full. And that now that they've had plenty of opportunity to respond to the gospel, then this is when the hardening stops for Israel. The blinders come off for Israel. And that may very well be true. There's others that may talk about that more specific because Paul actually says, "the full number of Gentiles comes in." It's a very specific thing that he says, "the full number of Gentiles that comes in." In other words, that God actually knows when the last Gentile is going to say yes to Jesus. Wherever that is in all of the world, that when that person, wherever they are, says yes to Jesus, that is the full number of all the Gentiles that are going to come to faith in Jesus. And at that time, the hardening of Israel ceases, the blinders come off, and there is a large scale turning to Messiah Jesus. I have a tendency to lean in that direction. Because I think that the terminology that Paul is using there is quite specific when he says the full number of Jews, the full number, I'm sorry, of Gentiles will come in. I think God knows exactly what that looks like and exactly that number because He's God, right? But that's when that's going to occur that we're told in the text of Scripture. But thirdly here, under God's mystery, is that, "Israel's envy turns into faith in Jesus." You probably remember very clearly that, we are already told earlier that kind of the Gentiles being able to now be receptive to the message of the gospel would promote an envy and a jealousy, a good one, in Israel because of what they were missing, right? They were missing fellowship with the God that they said that they served. And notice what the text says in verses 26 and 27. It says, "And in this way, all Israel will be saved. As it is written, 'The deliverer will come from Zion; he will turn godlessness away from Jacob. And this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins.'" You see, what we see is this is kind of telling us what was told us in verse number 12 if you remember earlier, where it says, "If Israel's transgression means riches for the world and their loss means riches for the Gentiles, how much greater will their," listen to this, full inclusion bring?" Well, that was the hint that we got earlier in this passage. And now Paul is saying, that's actually what's going to happen, this idea of the full inclusion of Israel, Paul actually uses the phrase, "All Israel will be saved." Isn't there a great hope in that statement? Notice what Paul doesn't say, all Israel might be saved. He says, "All Israel will be saved." This is a promise that God is making as a part of this mystery that's being revealed to us, "All Israel will be saved." Now, let's pause for just a second and understand what that means and what that doesn't mean because there's two words there, "All Israel," that we need to pause and understand for just a moment. Generally speaking, when you see the word all in the New Testament Scripture in the Greek language, it generally means this, all. Generally speaking, that's what it means. But not always. Not always. So for instance, it doesn't mean that when it says, all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. That means every individual, every single person, right? But there are many times in the Old Testament and the New Testament where the word all is used to describe a large group that is basically representative of an even larger group. I could take you to a bunch of different places, I'm gonna show you one, all right? I could take you to a bunch where that is the case. But if you went back to the time, in the Book of Joshua where Achan is sinning and it has caused a bunch of problems in Israel, that God is gonna deal with Achan's sin in the camp, right? They talk about sin in the camp in that passage of Scripture. And Joshua actually addresses Achan. Listen to what he says in chapter number seven. Joshua said, "'Why have you brought this trouble on us? The Lord will bring trouble on you today.' Then all Israel stoned him." May I ask you a question? Do you think that a million people picked up rocks and got after Achan? Of course not. That's not the point of what that's trying to say. All Israel was referencing a large group that was representative of a greater group. We see the same thing by the way, when John, the baptizer is baptizing and it says all Judea came out to see him. Literally, every single person in Judea came out there? Well, no. It's just giving us this picture of a really large contingent, right? That I believe is what Paul is saying in context here when he talks about all, okay? But the phrase is "all Israel will be saved". Who is the Israel that's being described? Because we do know that Paul has used before, particularly in the Book of Galatians, the word Israel to describe all believers, whether Gentile or Jewish, who have been brought into the family of God. He calls them the Israel of God, right? We also know that he talks about or describes an Israel within Israel. That not everyone who is ethnically Israel is Israel. We see that in Romans 9, 10, and 11, right? Who do I think he's describing here? I think he's describing ethnic Israel. That's who I think he's describing, why? First of all, when he starts quoting Scripture, he quotes a Scripture that talks about Jacob, very specific to ethnic Israel. Secondarily, that's exactly what he's been talking about throughout. He's been talking about ethnic Israel and their large scale rejection. And why would he be talking about a large scale receiving of Messiah if he wasn't referring to the same people who had had a large scale rejection? So I believe here, he's talking about a very large, very large group of people of Jewish descent who are going to turn to Messiah, Jesus. Now recognize that he said, "all Israel will be saved," He didn't say every Israelite. He said, all Israel, right? This is important for us to understand but this is what I think that he's getting at. And then he quotes some Scripture, as you just saw a moment ago, he quotes some scripture. It's really kind of a melding together of three Old Testament passages. It's Isaiah 59, Isaiah 27, and Jeremiah chapter 31. And I think that Paul does that to identify Jesus as the deliverer that he's referencing from the Old Testament. That He will deliver from Zion, the deliverer will come from Zion. He's referencing Jesus there, because Paul, the writer of the Book of Romans, uses the same exact verbiage when he's writing to the Thessalonians. In 1 Thessalonians 1:10 he says this, "And to wait for His Son from heaven whom He raised from the dead, Jesus, who delivers us from the wrath to come." He used the exact same phraseology there to talk about Jesus being the deliverer. And when he quotes these Old Testament passages that we just read in verse 26 and 27, he says, "The deliverer will come from Zion. He will turn godlessness away from Jacob," that's very specific to ethnic Israel. "And this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins." You see, Paul is making sure that we understand that Israel does not have a special deal. That the only way that they come into the kingdom is because of what Jesus has done on the cross and through His resurrection for the forgiveness of sins. That is the only way. Only He can deliver from the wrath of God through His death on a cross and His resurrection from the dead. There is no secondary way. It is solely about the Lord Jesus Christ. So if Paul is saying that this great mystery from God is that all Israel will be saved, which means there will be a massive turning to Messiah Jesus where there has been rebellion and rejection, how will this occur? That's your question, isn't it? How will this occur? When will it occur? I don't know. Here's what I do know. It's either going to occur right before Jesus' appearing or at Jesus' appearing. That's when this is going to happen. When the fullness of the Gentiles have come in, then there will be this veil that will be lifted, the hardening will be gone. The restoration of Israel will happen either right before the coming of the Lord Jesus or at His appearing. I'm not a hundred percent sure. I do know this, that there's a couple of passages of prophecy in the Old Testament that helped me to see this a little bit. The Book of Zechariah says this, "And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on Me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for Him as one mourns for an only child and grieve bitterly for Him as one grieves for a firstborn son." In the Book of Isaiah we read this, "Who has ever heard of such things? Who has ever seen things like this? Can a country be born in a day or a nation be brought forth in a moment? Yet no sooner is Zion in labor than she gives birth to her children." That can not only be prophetic about the founding of the nation of Israel in 1946, but it can also be pointing us forward to what happens to Israel en masse when they respond to their Messiah. I also, to be honest with you, I think of Jesus when He was interning in to Jerusalem for the very last time and now was in Jerusalem and was teaching during the passion week and was basically promoting and pronouncing woes over the Pharisees and the teachers of the law. And while He's talking to them, He's now speaking to Jerusalem, kind of as representative of Israel and saying how I've longed to gather you as a hen does her chicks. But you were not willing. Talking about the rejection there. Then he says this, it's in Matthew 23, "For I tell you," he's speaking to kind of Jerusalem, He's speaking to Israel, "For I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, 'Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.'" See, I don't know exactly when this is going to happen, I just know that it's going to happen and that all Israel, a large contingent of ethnic Jews are going to turn and respond to Messiah Jesus, where they have been previously rejecting Him. And that's going to come either right before the coming of the Lord Jesus or during the coming of the Lord Jesus. I can't say for sure. God's mystery is that all Israel will be saved. God's motive is His loving call. God's motive is His loving call. Look in verses 28 and 29, it says this, "As far as the gospel is concerned, they," meaning Israel, "are enemies for your sake. But as far as election is concerned, they," meaning Israel, "are loved on account of the patriarchs, for God's gifts and His call are irrevocable." Now what this shows us is God's motive in all of this, what God is doing in this great drama that we find ourselves reading about. And the first piece of that we just saw a moment ago that Israel are enemies of the gospel for your sake. Now make sure that you understand something. Paul is Jewish and he's writing about his fellow Jews. And he's already said in chapter 9 and chapter 10, that if you're going to pursue a life that is based on the righteousness of the law, you will never understand grace. You will never be able to come to a place of receiving the grace that God has given in Jesus Christ, unless you humble yourselves and recognize that it is by God's own grace that you can now have relationship with Him through His Son, Jesus. But if you keep pursuing the workspace righteousness, you will never see that. If you pursue workspace righteousness, you're an enemy of the gospel. You catching this? You're an enemy of the gospel. Now he's applying this specifically to Jews, but that's true of anyone. You're an enemy of the gospel if you are embracing a workspace righteousness, which Paul has already talked about. But isn't it interesting that he says in that passage of Scripture, "As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies," listen to this, "for your sake." You're an enemy of the gospel if you are embracing a workspace righteousness which Paul has already talked about. But isn't it interesting that he says in that passage of Scripture, "As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies," listen to this, "for your sake." You guys didn't do so well with this last week, I gave you some like, say you are the Gentiles, and they is Israel, you remember that, how you failed that test miserably last week? You guys remember? Yeah, I still love you. And you didn't do that bad. You really did do that bad, but it's okay, I forgive you. That's what's happening here still. Still talking about the Gentiles being you. And so when he says for your sake, he's talking to Gentiles. That Israel being enemies of the gospel is ultimately for your sake. In other words, their rebellion, as Paul has said earlier, their rebellion opened the door of grace so that Gentiles could experience and know and hear and receive the gospel. But it may make you think to yourself, well, if that's the case, has Israel been rejected? That's why Paul's been writing this in large part, because the people that he's writing to are thinking to themselves as, "God, has he tossed Israel to the side?" Nope, Israel's still on the stage. They're just not in the spotlight. They're still on the stage, right? That's what we have to keep in our minds, right? That Israel's not gone, hasn't been completely sidelined. Israel's still on the stage but outside the spotlight. Has God rejected? No, Paul's already answered that. "By no means," he said. That's why the second piece of this is so important. That even though Israel are enemies of the gospel for your sake, Israel is loved because of God's call. Israel is loved because of God's call. Look at verse 28 and 29. "But as far as election is concerned, they," Israel, "are loved on account of the patriarchs for God's gifts and His call are irrevocable." Leave this up for just a second. God's gifts and His call are irrevocable. You see, what God has done is that God has elected a people for Himself called Israel. And this people for Himself is to demonstrate His glory in the world. He chose this, just like I told you. He chose Abraham. He chose through the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, for this to occur, for Israel to become a people, for them to be a nation that glorified Him for the sake of the world. And because God did that, not based on Israel, but based on God's own choice, God's own character, God's own wisdom, God's own call, they are loved on account of the patriarchs. In other words, because God made this promise, and that promise is contingent upon Himself, not the patriarchs that they are loved, because God's gifts and His call are irrevocable. What are we talking about when we talk about God's gifts and His call? Well, I think we're talking about the gifts that He outlined in Romans chapter nine, when we first opened this series, when he said, "You know, the people of Israel, theirs is the adoption of sonship. Theirs is the divine glory. Theirs is the covenants. Theirs is the receiving of the law, the temple worship. These are gifts of God that God has given for His called people. And what is his call? It's his promise. It's his covenant that he's made to the patriarchs, that He is going to rescue the world through the seed of Abraham. This is how this is going to occur. And he has fulfilled that in the person of Jesus Christ, but He has not forgotten His people. So God's motive is His loving call. But lastly, God's mercy is that it's available to all. God's mercy means that it is available to everyone or to all. Look in verse 30 and 32, "Just as you who are at one time disobedient to God have now received mercy as a result of their disobedience, so they too have now become disobedient in order that they too may now receive mercy as a result of God's mercy to you. For God has bound everyone over to disobedience so that He may have mercy on them all. You see, what Paul has been doing through the book of Romans is he's been reminding us that there is no difference. Jew or Gentile, all have sinned and come short of the glory of God and all need mercy. God has bound everyone over to disobedience so that everyone may be shown mercy by everyone, every individual that responds in faith. Every kind of person, whether Jewish or not Jewish, every person can respond to the mercy that has been offered in Jesus Christ. You see, listen, when God created Israel, when He called Abraham and formed a people called Israel, do you know what that was for the Gentile world? The mercy of God, because God was, through Israel, showing the nations that lived around Israel the one true God. But when that nation, Israel, rejected who God was in the gospel and God opened the door to the Gentile so that they could respond now in faith to Jesus Christ, do you know what that was to the Jews? The mercy of God, because what God was doing was taking that group of people, non-Jewish people and seeing them come into relationship with the God of Israel through God, the Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, the perfect Israelite, and it was causing them to be envious and jealous of the relationship that they didn't have. It was the mercy of God. So God had shown mercy to the Israelites. God had shown mercy to the Gentiles for the sake of the other, because God has mercy on us all wherever we've come from because all of us have sinned and come short of the glory of God and could never come into His presence except by His own mercy in Jesus. See, this is a beautiful reminder for us of how gracious God is. So how do we respond to this? We've walked through this text, literally, verse by verse and tried to understand it and put handles on it. And hopefully, hopefully, you've been able to do that. How do we respond? I'll give you a handful of ideas. Here's the first, this should cultivate a thankful heart to God for His faithfulness to His promises. That's what this should do. The teaching that we're reading in Romans 9, 10, and 11, it should cultivate in us a thankful heart to God for His faithfulness to His promises. Do you think that there's probably been times in the life of Israel and times in the life of the Gentile church, do you think there's been times where they probably put their hands up in the air and looked at God and been like, are you gonna do this? What's gonna happen? Well, yeah, for sure. Because the whole point of Paul writing this is because people are wondering, has God set aside Israel? 'Cause it looks like he has. They're hardened. It's a partial hardening, but they're hardened. They've rejected Jesus. But God is, because he just said, "Okay, well I tried this and they're out." No, God's gonna be faithful to His promise, because He said he was gonna do it, He's going to do it. And he said He was going to rescue Israel and they're going to be rescued. And we're seeing this mystery of God's own faithfulness to God's own character. I chose them. I called them. I've not revoked it because it was based on me, not on them. And I'm going to come through. They're gonna think I've left them. They're gonna think they're gonna be hardened forever. People looking on are gonna think, man, is God ever gonna do this? And Paul's saying, I've got something to tell you. God is going to come through, and all Israel will be saved, because God, listen, whatever God says, God will do. That should cultivate in us a thankful heart, because whatever God promises, God is going to come through on. He doesn't promise life is going to be easy. He doesn't promise everything's going to happen on our own schedule. Because believe me, there are times in your life and in my life, maybe even right now where you're thinking to yourself, God, I need Your deliverance. I need Your help. I need You to come through. And I've been asking You that for now what seems like too long. Have You pushed me aside? No. God does what he wants, how He wants in the time that He wants. The reason that you don't get everything you want in the time you want and in the way you want is, I just did the math real quick, because You are not God. And God gets to choose, because His ways are higher. They're better, they're wiser. God knows what He's doing, how He's doing it. Our response is faith, our response is trust. And I know sometimes it's hard. Listen, it's hard for me. I get in those seasons and I'm thinking to myself, God, please, please, please. But I have to trust Him, what he's doing, the timing that He's doing it, but know this: God will always come through on His promises. Secondly, we should cultivate a thankful heart to God for His offer of mercy to all through Jesus. Aren't you grateful to God that God's mercy extends to everybody of every background of every ethnicity, of every skin tone, of every socioeconomic status? God's mercy extends to us all. There is no room in the life of someone who believes the gospel to have an idea that they are superior to anyone else for any reason. No room for it. The gospel crushes our arrogance and levels everything at the foot of the cross. So no matter what your portfolio says you are, no matter what your skin tone says you are, no matter what your kind of resume says you are, no matter any of those things, we're all coming the same way: by grace, through faith in Jesus Christ our Lord. Thank God for His mercy that extends to us all because we've all sinned and come short of the glory of God. We should cultivate a thankful heart for that. We should also cultivate a humble love and witness to our Jewish neighbors. Some of you are going, "Wow, that's a specific application." Yep, and it's really what Paul's talking about. Notice I said a humble love. Again, the last thing we should be as the people of Jesus is people who act as if we're deserving of the grace that we've been given. Well, you people that are lost and you people that are Jewish and you people that are this, you need to come around, 'cause I'm stop. The gospel rightly understood crushes those ideas and helps us, like I said last week, we are one beggar telling another beggar where to find bread. We're just grateful that God has shown us mercy. We're grateful for His grace. And so ultimately we gotta be a people who share with other people, including the Jewish people. You see, it has become a style in the last, basically, century to lay off sharing with Jewish people. No, do not show them or share with them the love of Jesus Christ. Why? Why? Well, some people kind of worked on this idea and thought, well, they've got a kind of a special deal with God. No, no, no. Let me tell you what the deal with God is, Jesus. That's the deal. "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me," Jesus said. That's the deal. That's it. For Jew, for Gentile, it's all the same. So we still, even though there's a blinding and there's a hardening, we still show humble love. Remember, we don't support the root; the root supports us. We show humble love and witness to our Jewish neighbors. But we can't just set aside their evangelism. We can't just put that aside and go, "No, we're not. No, we'll talk to everybody, but not them." Right? That's crazy! John Stott actually said this, he's a wonderful British theologian pastor, who's now with the Lord Jesus. And when he wrote on the Book of Romans, here's what he said. He said, "Romans 11 stands in clear opposition to this trend," that I just described, "because of its insistence on the fact that there is only one olive tree to which Jews and Gentile believers both belong." "The irony of this," writes Tom Wright, "is that the late 20th century, in order to avoid antisemitism, has advocated a position, the non evangelization of the Jews, which Paul regards, precisely as anti-Semitic." In other words, we should be sharing with our Jewish neighbors the beauty and love of Jesus Christ. And then lastly, cultivate a heart to share Jesus with all people. Let me tell you why. Your personal witness matters. Global mission and witness matters. You know why? Listen to this. Because in God's sovereign plan in this historical salvation drama that He has us all in, there is coming a time where the full number of the Gentiles will come in. I don't know who that is, where they are; I just know that as we obey the commission that Jesus has given to us to make disciples of all nations, that as we do that, we are part and parcel of God's very plan for seeing the restoration of Israel and the return of Messiah Jesus for one people of God carried into new creation. That means this, friend, you are on stage and you have a part in this drama. Your circle of influence, your friends and family, your classmates, your work associates, your neighbors, your friends that you hang out with in the community, that, that's why you're on stage. You have a part to play. And that part is to know Jesus and to make Him known. We don't have on our wall that our mission as a church is that every man, woman, and child have repeated opportunities to hear and see the gospel of Jesus Christ. We don't have that up there for no reason. We have that on there because it flows straight out of the heartbeat of God for the world, and it is our part to play in the great drama that is unfolding. You're on the stage, play your part. Let's bow our heads together. In a moment we're gone. And thank you so much for walking through the depth of Romans chapter 11. It's so rich, it has so much to say to us. You may be here and you've never before received Jesus. You've never come to a place of having your sins forgiven, your life transformed. I wanna encourage you when we dismiss in just a moment, if you'll come straight across the atrium, into the fireside room, we'd love to take a moment and pray with you, send you home with something that's gonna help you in this journey of faith. There's no more important decision you'll ever make than surrendering your life by faith to Jesus Christ, having your sins forgiven, your life made new, starting to walk with Jesus. I'm not talking about just you've been a part of church or whatever, I'm talking about you've been renewed, regenerated, transformed by Christ. Let us encourage you in that. If that's your need, I hope that you'll come straight across the atrium so that we can share that with you in the fireside room. And, Father, for those of us who know You, have been transformed by You, we've got so much to learn about who You are and Your heart. Thank you, God. Thank You for how merciful You are and that You've shown Your mercy to every kind of person, Jew or Gentile. Thank You that you always, always, always make good on Your promises. May we be a people who look into Your word and know Your promises and trust them, because You will always come through. It may not be when we think. We may not see it all even, but we know You're going to come through. We know You're going to do what You promised You would do even if we don't see it. It's not contingent upon our eyes; it's contingent upon Your character. Thank You for that. Thank You that we can share the good news with everyone, Jew and Gentile alike, because there is only one way to the Father, and it's through the Son. And I pray that You would help us to play our part as ambassadors, as people who are stewards of the gospel. Help us to play our part in our sphere of influence, 'cause that's what you've called us to. So fill us, and use us, help us to see You clearly for who You are and to glorify You for all that You do, and for You to shape our lives in such a way that our lives are useful and used in this short, brief existence we have on this earth. Do that, I pray for Your glory, as You work out the sovereignty of Your beautiful plan. I pray in Jesus' name. Amen.

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