Message # 6. Israel's 911
God's Future Dealings With Israel--Romans 11:11-36

In the previous message, we closed with verse 11 of Romans 11. That scripture asks the question, “I say then, Have they (Israel) stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy.”

Romans 11, verses 11 through 25, bring out that Israel's unbelief was the Gentile's opportunity and it opened the door of salvation to them.

It must have grieved Paul to write these words! If Israel hadn’t rejected the Messiah, their long awaited Kingdom Age would have come in and they and Paul would have reigned with Christ here on earth. The blindness of the Jews brought light to the Gentiles but in the end, God will restore the former glory to Israel and a nation will be re-born in that day.

Paul asked, "Have they stumbled that they should fall?" That is, have they utterly fallen without any hope of recovering? The answer again is, "God forbid!"

God has countered their present defection by making known the riches of His grace to the Gentiles, and this, in turn, will eventually provoke Israel to jealousy and turn them back to God and to the Christ whom they have rejected and Israel will take the Gospel to every part of the world, bringing untold blessing to every part of the world.

Verse 12. "Now if the defection of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fullness?"

The fullness of Israel will be the conversion of Israel and the fulfillment of God's purpose regarding them.

Verses 13-14: For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify mine office: If by any means I may provoke to emulation them which are my flesh, and might save some of them.”

Paul was a chosen vessel, ordained by God to be a minister to the Gentiles (Acts 9:15). He was a free born Roman Jew, and the Jews shunned the Gentiles, but he was not ashamed to be called a minister to the Gentiles, in fact, he "magnified" his office. He would take the message to whomever God sent him.

He admitted he was the apostle to the Gentiles, but he didn’t want the Gentiles to think for one minute that he had lost interest in Israel. Instead, he tried to stir Israel to emulate the Gentiles so that they might also come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and the grace of God that was going out to the Gentiles. He also didn’t want the Gentiles to think they were better than the Jews since the Jews had been set aside and the Gentiles welcomed in. We Gentiles now enjoy the blessings that the Jew would have had, had they been ready to receive them.

Verse 15. "For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead?"

Many of God’s chosen people are still scattered among the nations, a disappointed and weary people under the ban of the God of their fathers. Meanwhile, the message of grace is going out to the Gentiles and many are believing and being saved.

What will it mean to the world as a whole when Israel nationally is reconciled back to God? They will become a holy people, sending out missionaries of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all the world and many people from all the nations of the world will get saved.

Verse 16: "For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches."

The present remnant of true believers in Jesus Christ in Israel today are truly a people set apart to God, and the nation to which they belong will eventually be set apart to God, also. We know the “root” of the covenant olive tree is holy (the ‘root’ is Abraham, who believed God, and it was counted to him for righteousness), so all those who share faith in God with him are holy.

Galatians 3:29. “And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

Paul called the Jewish remnant who got saved ‘the firstfruit,’ and of course that included himself and all believers in Israel at the time he wrote this. The ‘lump’ refers to the entire nation of Israel, all twelve tribes, while ‘The root’ refers just to Abraham. The natural ‘branches’ are the descendants of Abraham according to the flesh.

In verses 17-22, we see Israel is judicially broken off from the good olive tree and the wild branches, the believing Gentiles, grafted in. The good olive tree, of course, is Christ.

Verse 17: “And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;”

The natural branches who were broken off were Israelites by birth but not by faith. The branches of the wild olive tree, the Gentiles, were grafted in among the remnant of Israel, allowing the believing Jew and Gentile alike to partake of ‘the root and fatness of the olive tree.’

The danger now for the Gentile is that they might rest on the outward privileges and fail to accept the Gospel of Christ for themselves. In that event, God will deal with the Gentiles as He has the Jews and we find a solemn warning in verses 18-21.

Verses 18-19: "Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee. Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in.”

An explanation comes in verse 20, followed by a warning to the Gentiles in verse 21.

Verse 20: “Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:”

Throughout history, God has dealt severely with Israel when they rebelled against Him. They were slaves in Egypt, captives in Assyria and Babylon, and millions were killed or scattered worldwide under Roman rule. More recently, Adolph Hitler and Germany killed over six million Jews during World War II. Let verse 21 be a warning to the Gentiles. “for if 'God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest He also spare not thee.”

Verse 22: Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.”

‘On them which fell,’ (those who refused to believe the testimony) ‘severity;’-‘but toward thee,’ Gentiles who believed the testimony, ‘goodness.’ According to prophecy, this goodness will continue until the church is raptured.

Throughout the Old Testament era, when the Jews followed God they were blessed greatly. But they repeatedly rebelled against God and now for a season God has turned from them to the Gentiles. If the Gentiles don’t follow Christ in faith, they too will be cast aside.

Verses 23: “And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be graffed in: for God is able to graff them in again."

This gives Israel the promise that those who have faith in God will be grafted in again, in God's own time and according to God's eternal blueprint.

Verse 24: For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branches, be graffed into their own olive tree?"

Paul states that God has acted "contrary to nature." You don’t graft wild branches into good trees. God acted "contrary to nature” in bringing salvation to the Gentiles. He will bring salvation to His covenant people (Israel) in the future and its perfectly logical for God to do that. Israel is the natural olive tree and God is able to bring them back to Himself.

There is no doubt that the day is near when the true Church, which is predominantly Gentile, will be caught up to be with the Lord. When this occurs, and if Israel comes back to Him in faith, God will graft them back into their “olive tree.” The Lord Jesus, the promised Deliverer Who came and was rejected by Israel, will come out of Zion and the nation will be saved. (Verse 26b)

Verse 25-26a.: "For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part has happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in. 26a: And so all Israel shall be saved."

This is a ‘mystery’ to mankind, hidden in the mind of God until the time He revels it: "Israel will be blinded in part." But, thank God, this opened the door to the Gentiles, but only until the present work of God among the Gentiles is completed.

"The fullness of the Gentiles" is the completion of God’s work among the Gentile nations which has continued since Israel's rejection of Jesus. Scripture tells us this ‘fullness’ will come in when Christ calls His Church home in accordance with 1st Thessalonians 4 and 1st Corinthians 15. After that "all Israel shall be saved." The term "all Israel" doesn’t mean everyone with Jewish blood. "they are not all Israel who are of Israel, but the children of the promise are counted for the seed."

Israel is an enemy of the gospel at the present time, but it’s through that enmity that God’s grace goes out to the Gentiles. Regardless of this enmity, God still loves them.

The following Scripture contains testimony from a meeting of the early Christians in Jerusalem.

Acts 15:13b-17. “James (the half-brother of Jesus) answered, saying, "Men and brethren, listen to me: Simon has declared how God at the first visited the Gentiles to take out of them a people for His name. And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written: 'After this I will return and will rebuild the tabernacle of David, which has fallen down; I will rebuild its ruins and I will set it up; So that all mankind may seek the LORD, Even all the Gentiles who are called by My name, Says the LORD who does all these things.”

The Gentiles, who in time past had not believed God, have now obtained mercy by reason of the Jews' unbelief. By the same token, when the Gentiles become apostate and are set aside, Israel will obtain mercy and will turn back to God in faith.

Verses 26-27: "And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins."

The Bible states that a time is coming when God will save the nation of Israel, not just a remnant. That doesn’t refer to those who were born again during this dispensation of grace, but specifically to the whole nation of Israel that will be alive when that day comes. It has nothing to do with the Israelites who died in unbelief during this dispensation of grace.

In that day, the Jew will be saved by faith in the same way the Gentiles are being saved today. If the Jew refuses to receive the Lord Jesus, he will be lost just like the Gentile who refuses to believe on Christ. Every Israelite that will be a part of this new nation will have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior, therefore, ‘all Israel shall be saved’ as prophesied in God's Word. As it is written, "there shall come out of Zion a Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob (Israel)."

Everything God has promised will come to pass "as it is written.” Israel will become a holy nation, wholly dedicated to God. Zechariah 12:10. "And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.”

Its true that Jesus came specifically to the Jew. They rejected Him and had Him nailed to a cross; but "The foundation of God standeth sure," and since God's Word can’t be broken, His covenant can't be broken, "All Israel shall be saved as it is written.”

God hasn’t forgotten His covenant with Abraham. In due time He’ll fulfill every jot and tittle of His Word. "For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins."

Pick up your Bible and read exactly what God has promised to Israel in Jeremiah 31:31-34. It might surprise you what it says.

I mentioned this scripture to a friend of mine who is a preacher in a mainline denominational church. He was very surprised at what Jeremiah wrote because the seminary he attended didn’t teach the Old Testament and he hadn’t read it for himself. I don’t think he is alone among today's preachers.

Verses 28-31: "As concerning the Gospel, they are enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, they are beloved for the fathers' sakes. For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance. For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief: Even so have these also now not believed, that through your mercy they also may obtain mercy."

Positionally, the Jews are the enemies of God for the time being, simply because they reject His Son, Jesus. Many Gentiles have taken advantage of the opportunity presented by the blindness of Israel and the Lord is calling out a Gentile bride for Himself from that group.

We Gentiles have been warned that Israel is still God's elect nation and we are not to become proud and forget where we came from.

Verse 32: "God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that He might have mercy upon all.”

God concludes that both Jew and Gentile are in the state of unbelief, and God has the right to withhold or extend mercy to whom He will, be it on Jew or Gentile. Verse 32 doesn’t teach universal salvation. Galatians 3:22. “But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.”

All mankind is in the same boat spiritually. We are lost until we become a child of God, and the only way to become a child of God is to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, to accept His finished work on the cross by faith. Ephesians 2:4-5. "But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)”

The world-wide spiritual conditions that existed in Paul’s day are still true of today. The nations are still in sin and unbelief and Israel still refuses to believe in Christ.

The last four verses of this chapter are filled with the praise of God.

Verses 33-36: "0 the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments, and His ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been His counselor? Or who hath first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen."

Paul points out that God’s judgments are faultless and His ways are beyond our understanding.

There are so many things that I can’t explain about the sovereignty of God, the Trinity, and redemption, and if I could explain them, I could explain God. I’d be as all-knowing as He is and might think myself equal to God. As Paul said, ‘God forbid!’

God is greater and more powerful than any created being. Sometimes we forget that He is omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient.

The New Testament wasn’t written when Paul wrote this letter to the Romans. In fact, only the books of James, Mark, and some of Paul’s letters were written. Paul’s Bible was the Old Testament and he quotes from it to help us understand the power and sovereignty and righteousness of God.

Verse 34: "For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been His counselor?"

{Isaiah 40:13-14.”Who hath directed the Spirit of the LORD, or being his counselor hath taught him? With whom took he counsel, and who instructed him, and taught him in the path of judgment, and taught him knowledge, and showed to him the way of understanding?”}

Verse 35: "Or who hath first given to Him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again?" {Job 35:7. "If you are righteous, what do you give to Him? Or what does He receive from your hand?}.

Verse 36: "For of Him, and through Him, and to Him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen."

Faith accepts what God says without reservation just because God said it. Abraham "believed God," as did Paul, and all believers "know whom they have believed."

We must accept by faith that God permitted His sinless Son to die for sinful creatures like us. Its impossible for man to understand how Jesus Christ could love a whole world full of sinners and lay down His life willingly that we might be saved. Or why God's mercy has been extended to hell deserving sinners through that sacrifical death of Jesus on the cross. The only way that you or I or any other person will ever stand justified before God will be on the merit of Jesus' blood shed for our sins!

We hear men scoff at the shedding of blood. I heard it mentioned just today. They teach its no longer necessary to believe in a "bloody Gospel." There’s no indication that God has changed the way of eternal salvation for man. The Bible still teaches, in Hebrews 9:22; "Without the shedding of blood there is no remission."

Have you taken the step of faith that puts your faith in the shed blood of Jesus? If you accept His offer of salvation, you’re saved and will spend eternity in heaven with Him. If you reject His offer of salvation, His Word tells us you will spend eternity in hell.