Introduction

\\INTRODUCTION TO ROMANS 11\\

The apostle having spoken of the calling of the Gentiles, and given a
hint of the perverseness of the Jews in slighting the Gospel, proceeds
in this chapter to treat of their rejection; in which he shows, that it
was not universal, though of the greater part in his time; and which he
confirms by some passages out of the Old Testament, and then points at
the end and design of God in the casting them off; and exhorts the
Gentiles not to insult them, but to learn to be humble and cautious by
what was done to them; and foretells the conversion of the Jews in the
latter day, which will be general, so that their rejection is not
final; and resolves the whole dispensation of God, both with respect to
Jews and Gentiles, into the unsearchable wisdom and sovereign will of
God: he begins with an objection he saw would be made upon what he had
said, concerning the calling of the Gentiles, and the unbelief of the
Jews, that then God had wholly cast off his people, \\#Ro 11:1\\, to
which he answers with a "God forbid", by way of detestation; and by
instancing in himself, who was of the people of the Jews, and yet was
called; and by distinguishing between some and others among them: there
were some who were foreknown, loved, and chosen of God from
everlasting: these were not cast off, but others who were not
foreknown, \\#Ro 11:2\\, and then he illustrates the present case of
the Jews by observing how it was with them in the times of Elias; who
though he complained of their apostasy and cruelty, and imagined that
there were none left but himself that worshipped the true God, yet
there were then seven thousand, which were preserved from the idolatry
of Baal, \\#Ro 11:2-4\\, and so the apostle observes it was now,
\\#Ro 11:5\\, there was a small number whom God of his free grace had
chosen, and reserved for himself, and so were not all cast away, as the
objection suggested; and having called this choice an election of
grace, he argues the contrariety and inconsistency of grace and works
in this affair, \\#Ro 11:6\\, and since it appeared that there were two
sorts of people among them, one that were chosen and the other not,
hence it was, that though Israel did not obtain the righteousness they
sought for, yet they that were chosen obtained it, and so were not cast
away, when the rest were, \\#Ro 11:7\\, and that so it should be, or
that this should be the case of the greater part of the Jews, that they
should be given up to blindness and hardness of heart, the apostle
proves by some testimonies of Isaiah and David, which he produces,
\\#Ro 11:8-10\\, hence follows an objection, that if this be the case,
then God had appointed them to stumble, that they might fall even all
of them, and always continue fallen; to which the apostle answers with
a "God forbid", as usual, when anything is objected which is abhorred;
and by observing the view, event, and order of things; showing, that
the fall of the Jews issued in the salvation of the Gentiles; and the
salvation of the Gentiles was to provoke the Jews to seek the same
mercy, \\#Ro 11:11\\, and then follows an improvement and illustration
of this end, or event of their fall, \\#Ro 11:12\\, that if the fall
and lessening of the Jews were the means of enriching the Gentiles with
the riches of Christ and his grace, what a glory must be brought to
them, when they should all of them be converted and join them! and
that the rejection of the Jews was neither total nor final, the apostle
argues from his office, even as an apostle of the Gentiles, whom he
addresses as such, \\#Ro 11:13\\, and from his view and end in
executing that office, which was to provoke the Jews to emulate the
Gentiles, and so save some of them, \\#Ro 11:14\\, and then he repeats
in other words, \\#Ro 11:15\\, the argument he had used in \\#Ro 11:12\\,
and proves the future conversion of the Jews, from the instances of
conversion and sanctification, which had been, and were then among
them; which were as the firstfruits to the lump, and the root to the
branches; and were pledges and tokens of a general conversion and
sanctification of them hereafter, \\#Ro 11:16\\, and by occasion of the
metaphor of the root and branches before used, he expresses the
rejection of the Jews, by the breaking off some of the branches, and
the reception of the Gentiles by their ingrafting into a Gospel
church state among the converted Jews, enjoying the same privileges
with them, \\#Ro 11:17\\, and since they were originally of a wild
olive tree, and merely of grace partook of the root and fatness of the
good olive of the Gospel church state, as consisting first of the Jews,
they ought not to be haughty and insolent, and boast and brag over the
Jews, since they were beholden to them, and not the Jews to them,
\\#Ro 11:18\\, and whereas an objection might be made, that the Jews
were cast out, to make room for the Gentiles, \\#Ro 11:19\\, and
therefore the one must be more deserving than the other; the apostle
replies to it, \\#Ro 11:20\\ by granting, that the one were broken off,
or rejected, that the other might be ingrafted, or taken in but then as
it was owing to unbelief in the Jews that they were cast off, in which
the Gentiles were before conversion as well as they, so it was by faith
they stood in their church relation, which was the gift of God, and
owing to his grace; so that their ingrafting and continuance in a
Gospel church state were not the effect of merit in them; wherefore he
gives them this good advice, not to be proud and lifted up with their
privileges, as though they were of their own deserving, but to fear the
Lord and his goodness, from whence they sprung; and suggests, that they
should be so far from making such an use of the rejection of the Jews,
that it ought rather to engage them to caution, care, and fear; for
they were the natural branches in the olive tree, and if these were not
spared when behaving disagreeably, they must not expect to fare
otherwise, who were originally of the wild olive tree, should they act
unworthy of the privileges they enjoyed, \\#Ro 11:21\\, wherefore the
apostle recommends to their serious consideration the severity of God
in the casting off of the Jews, and his goodness in taking in them, the
Gentiles; and threatens them with cutting off, should they slight,
neglect, or misuse the goodness of God to them in his house and
ordinances, \\#Ro 11:22\\, and on the other hand, an intimation is
given, that the Jews, though broken off shall be grafted in again,
should their unbelief discontinue, and faith in Christ be given them,
which was not impossible with God; he is able both to remove their
unbelief, give them faith, and reinstate them in a church relation,
\\#Ro 11:23\\, and as it is without doubt he can do it, it looks very
likely that he will; which may be argued from the ingrafting of the
Gentiles, who were like the olive tree, wild by nature; were cut out
from thence, and, contrary to nature, grafted into the good olive tree;
wherefore by an argument from the lesser to the greater, much more may
it be thought, that the Jews, the natural branches, will, in God's own
time, be grafted in their former church state, some of their ancestors
were in, \\#Ro 11:24\\, yea, the apostle argues the certainty of their
conversion, and reinstatement into the Gospel church, from the design
of Providence in suffering blindness in part to happen to them; which
was not intended always to continue, only until all the elect of God
are gathered in among the Gentiles; and this mystery of Providence and
grace, he thought fit to acquaint the Gentiles with, lest they should
be conceited of themselves, as if they only shared the favour of God,
and were deserving of it, to the contempt of the Jews, \\#Ro 11:25\\,
Moreover, the apostle affirms that all Israel shall be saved,
\\#Ro 11:26\\, which is consequentially deduced from what he had said,
and which he proves by a passage, out of \\#Isa 59:20\\, and by its
being a principal part of the covenant, which God has made with them,
which he will not break, but shall be fulfilled; when he shall make
them sensible of their sins, and take them away by the application of
his pardoning grace, \\#Ro 11:27\\, and whereas the implacable enmity
of the Jews to Christ and his Gospel might be objected to such a
gracious procedure of God towards them, the apostle removes the
objection, by granting that they were enemies to the Gospel on account
of the Gentiles, to whom it was preached; but then there was a chosen
people among them, who were beloved of God; which would be made
manifest, because of the oath and promise made unto their their
fathers, \\#Ro 11:28\\, wherefore as the purposes, promises, and
covenant of God are immutable, so the gifts of his grace, and the
calling of his people included in them, are things certain and
irrevocable, \\#Ro 11:29\\, and so the calling of the Jews, and the
gifts of his grace designed for them, which is another proof of their
calling and conversion; and which is further argued, and made both
more probable and certain, by comparing the case of the Jews and
Gentiles together; as for the Gentiles, they were formerly infidels and
obtained mercy, through the unbelief of the Jews, \\#Ro 11:30\\,
wherefore arguing from the less probable to that which is more so, the
Jews, though for the present unbelievers, yet it may be thought, that
through the mercy the Gentiles had received, they would some time or
other be provoked to seek for, and so obtain the same mercy,
\\#Ro 11:31\\, and the rather this may be given into and received, not
only because they both have been in a state of unbelief, but the end
and design of God in concluding them in it, were to have mercy on each
of them, \\#Ro 11:32\\, which dispensation of God both to one and to
the other by turns, in different ways, was so amazing and unaccountable
to the apostle, that he breaks out into admiration at the wisdom and
knowledge of God: which were so abundant, that they could not be
searched out, conceived of, and expressed, \\#Ro 11:33\\, the reasons
of which lay in his own breast, and are only known to himself no one
having known his mind, or been his counsellor, \\#Ro 11:34\\, nor is he
obliged to give an account of his matters, and the reasons of his
proceedings, to any of his creatures; he is not indebted to them for
anything, nor does he any injustice to any of them, by whatsoever
steps he takes in Providence and grace; let that appear, and recompense
will be made, \\#Ro 11:35\\, everything must be resolved into his
sovereign will and pleasure, and so this of choosing some, and leaving
others, of rejecting the Jews, and receiving the Gentiles, and also
that of calling the Jews again; as it is reasonable everything should,
since all things are from him, through him, and to him, \\#Ro 11:36\\,
and so all glory is due unto him, and here ends the doctrinal part of
this epistle.