PLUS Resource: 6 Prayers for When You Are Fighting Anxiety

Romans 10

SUMMARY.--Paul's Desire for Israel. The Jews Zealous, but not According to Knowledge. They Seek a Righteousness of Their Own Rather than God's Plan of Righteousness. The Righteousness by Faith Described. Shown to be for Gentiles as well as Jews. Hence, the Gospel must be Preached to All Men. The Unbelief of the Jews Predicted by the Prophets.

      12-15. For there is no difference. The Jew objected to salvation by faith, instead of by the law. Paul has just shown that righteousness could not be obtained by the law, secondly, that the prophets had predicted salvation by faith. But the Jew is now supposed to object that this salvation was for Jews only, yet Paul is preaching it to the Gentiles. Hence he declares that it is for Greek (Gentile), as well as Jew, as shown by the passage just quoted in verse 11 . It says, Every one that believeth, etc. ( Isa. 28:16 ). He further shows that "the same Lord is rich to all that call upon him," of whatever race, by a second quotation from the prophets, found in Joel 2:32 . 13. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. To "call upon the name of the Lord" implies, (1) That the true God (Jehovah, in the Hebrew quotation) shall be approached in worship, and (2) that there shall be something more than saying, "Lord, Lord," etc. ( Matthew 7:21 Matthew 7:22 ). The language, wherever used, implies coming to the Lord and calling on him in his appointed way. Compare Acts 22:16 Acts 2:21 2:21 . This promise of Joel , since it says "whosoever," is not limited to the Jewish race. 14. How shall they call upon him in whom they have not believed? The passages quoted from the prophets show that the Gentiles also were to have the opportunity of salvation. Hence the duty of preaching to them is now shown. They could not "call upon the Lord" (see verse 13 ) without faith. But there could be no faith in the Lord unless they had heard of him, since knowledge is an element of faith. But they could not hear the gospel story until it was preached to them. Hence, preaching to the Gentiles was essential to carry out the purposes of God. 15. But how shall they preach, except they be sent? Those must go out to them who have knowledge of the gospel. Hence it was needful that the apostles and evangelists be sent. Hence Christ said, "Go into all the world and preach to every creature." Thus Paul shows the duty was laid upon him to preach to Greek as well as Jew. As it is written. Isaiah 52:7 . This message was to the Gentiles blessed tidings, and the passage quoted from Isaiah shows, under a figure, how those would rejoice who believed the glad news. See Acts 13:48 .

      16-18. But they have not all obeyed the gospel. All had not yet heard it, and hence could not obey it. To those who receive the gospel it is glad tidings. These fulfill the prediction of the prophets. But many are in unbelief, and hence do not obey the gospel. (Note that the gospel is to be obeyed.) This need not surprise us, for Isaiah predicted this also, when he said ( Isa. 53:1 ), Lord, who hath believed our report? 17. So, then, faith cometh by hearing. Hence the need of preaching. If God by a miracle wrought faith in the heart, he could dispense with the preacher. But the divine arrangement is that it should result from hearing the word of God preached. For an example of the gospel plan, see Acts 18:8 . 18. Have they not heard? Who are alluded to? Both Jews and Gentiles. The objector might say, Well, if faith comes by hearing, so few have heard that we are not responsible for our unbelief. Nay, says the apostle, the opportunity to hear has been very widely extended. In the language of the Psalmist ( 19:4 ), Their sound (that of the preachers of the gospel) is gone out into all the earth. When the vast multitude converted on Pentecost were scattered to their homes, they carried the gospel into all parts of the civilized world. Paul was now writing to the church in Rome, where no apostle had ever been.

      19-21. Did not Israel know? Why, the Jew is supposed to object, if the gospel has been extended so widely, is the greater portion of Israel in ignorance that the Gentiles were to be saved? Paul replies that Israel should have known: (1) Moses foretells the call of another people to the favor of God. (2) 20. Isaiah still more plainly predicts the salvation of the Gentiles in 65:1 , and (3) in the next verse ( 65:2 ) he predicts the falling away of Israel. 21. All day long, etc. Quoted from Isaiah 65:2 . It presents the figure of a parent, with hands extended, appealing to a wayward child. That child was the Jewish nation. It was cast off because it would be cast off. It refused to listen to appeals. See Matt. 23:37 . The apostle is far from ascribing the rejection of Israel to a divine decree, but he assigns the cause to Israel itself. Just so the Savior says in the passage ( Matt. 23:37 ) just referred to, "How often would I have gathered, etc., . . . but ye would not." The divine wish was that Israel should be saved, but Israel stubbornly refused.

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