Dear brothers and sisters, a the longing of my heart and my prayer to God is that the Jewish people might be saved.
I know what enthusiasm they have for God, but it is misdirected zeal.
For they don't understand God's way of making people right with himself. Instead, they are clinging to their own way of getting right with God by trying to keep the law. They won't go along with God's way.
For Christ has accomplished the whole purpose b of the law. All who believe in him are made right with God.
For Moses wrote that the law's way of making a person right with God requires obedience to all of its commands. c6
But the way of getting right with God through faith says, "You don't need to go to heaven" (to find Christ and bring him down to help you).
And it says, "You don't need to go to the place of the dead" (to bring Christ back to life again).
Salvation that comes from trusting Christ -- which is the message we preach -- is already within easy reach. In fact, the Scriptures say, "The message is close at hand; it is on your lips and in your heart." d9
For if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.
As the Scriptures tell us, "Anyone who believes in him will not be disappointed.e"
Jew and Gentile are the same in this respect. They all have the same Lord, who generously gives his riches to all who ask for them.
For "Anyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." f14
But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?
And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!" g16
But not everyone welcomes the Good News, for Isaiah the prophet said, "Lord, who has believed our message?" h17
Yet faith comes from listening to this message of good news -- the Good News about Christ.
But what about the Jews? Have they actually heard the message? Yes, they have: "The message of God's creation has gone out to everyone, and its words to all the world." i19
But did the people of Israel really understand? Yes, they did, for even in the time of Moses, God had said, "I will rouse your jealousy by blessing other nations. I will make you angry by blessing the foolish Gentiles." j20
And later Isaiah spoke boldly for God: "I was found by people who were not looking for me. I showed myself to those who were not asking for me." k21
But regarding Israel, God said, "All day long I opened my arms to them, but they kept disobeying me and arguing with me." l
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)