Paul's Letter to the Romans

Chapter 9

Paul is sorry for the Jews, 1-5. All descendants of Abraham are not of the promise, 6-13. God's sovereignty, 14-24. The calling of the Gentiles and rejecting of the Jews foretold, 25-31. The cause of the Jews' stumbling, 32, 33.

1 I say the truth in Christ. I do not lie, my conscience also bearing me testimony in the Holy Spirit, 2 That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ for my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh, 4 Who are Israelites, to whom pertain the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the service of God, and the promises, 5 Whose are the fathers, and from whom according to the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen.

6 It is not as though the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are descendants from Israel, 7 Neither because they are the seed of Abraham are they all children, but, "In Isaac your seed shall be called." 8 That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted for the seed. 9 For this is the word of promise: "At this time I will come, and Sarah shall have a son." 10 And not only this, but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac 11 (For the children not yet being born, neither having done any good or evil, so that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him who calls), 12 It was said to her, "The elder shall serve the younger." 13 As it is written, "Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated."

14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? By no means. 15 For he says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion." 16 So then, it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy. 17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "Even for this same purpose I have raised you up so that I might show my power in you and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth." 18 Therefore, he has mercy on whom he wills to have mercy, and whom he wills he hardens.

19 You will say then to me, "Why does he yet find fault? For who has resisted his will?" 20 But rather, O man, who are you who replies against God? Shall the thing formed say to him who formed it, "Why have you made me this way?" 21 Does the potter not have power over the clay of the same lump to make one vessel to honor and another to dishonor? 22 What if God, willing to show his wrath and to make his power known, endured with much patience the vessels of wrath fitted for destruction, 23 So that he might make known the riches of his glory for the vessels of mercy which he had before prepared for glory, 24 Even us whom he has called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles?

25 As he also says in Hosea, "I will call them, 'My people,' who were not my people, and her, 'Beloved,' who was not beloved."

26 "And it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said to them, 'You are not my people,' there they shall be called, 'The children of the living God.'"

27 Isaiah also cries concerning Israel: "Though the number of the children of Israel are as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved. 28 For he will finish the work and cut it short in righteousness, because the Lord will make a short work upon the earth."

29 And as Isaiah said before, "Unless the Lord of Sabaoth had left us a seed, we would have become like Sodom, and we would have been made like Gomorrah."

30 What shall we say then? That the Gentiles who did not follow after righteousness have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is by faith, 31 But Israel, who followed after the law of righteousness, has not attained to the law of righteousness. 32 Why? Because they did not seek it by faith, but as if it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumbling-stone,

33 As it is written, "Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling-stone and rock of offense, and whoever believes in him shall not be ashamed."

Commentary

Matthew Henry Commentary - Romans, Chapter 9

Notes

[v.7] - Quoting Genesis 21:12 (LXX).

[v.9] - Quoting Genesis 18:10.

[v.11] - From John Calvin's Commentary: "By these words, 'When the children had not yet been born, nor had done any good or evil,' he shows, that God in making a difference could not have had any regard to works, for they were not yet done. Now those who argue on the other side, and say, that this is no reason why the election of God should not make a difference between men according to the merits of works, for God foresees who those are who by future works would be worthy or unworthy of his grace, are not more clear-sighted than Paul, but stumble at a principle in theology, which ought to be well known to all Christians, namely, that God can see nothing in the corrupt nature of man, such as was in Esau and Jacob, to induce him to manifest his favor. When therefore he says, that neither of them had then done any good or evil, what he took as granted must also be added,— that they were both the children of Adam, by nature sinful, and endued with no particle of righteousness."

[v.12] - Quoting Genesis 25:23 (LXX).

[v.13] - Quoting Malachi 1:2-3 (LXX).

[v.15] - Quoting Exodus 33:19 (LXX).

[v.17] - Quoting Exodus 9:16.

[v.20] - "Why have you made me this way?" - Reference, Isaiah 45:9.

[v.25] - Quoting Hosea 2:23.

[v.26] - Quoting Hosea 1:10 (LXX).

[v.27-28] - Quoting Isaiah 10:22-23 (LXX).

[v.29] - Quoting Isaiah 1:9 (LXX).

[v.33] - Quoting Isaiah 8:14 and 28:16. The text in Isaiah 28:16 differs in that it says, "He who believes shall not make haste." Matthew Poole explains this by saying in his commentary, "He that is rash and hasty will at last be ashamed and confounded."

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