WHY, WHY, WHY?
Holy God, sovereign, faithful, and generous in mercy, I wait in eager anticipation of your Word to me today.
Read Romans 9:1–5
Paul’s Anguish Over Israel
9 I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying, my conscience confirms it through the Holy Spirit— 2 I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. 3 For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people, those of my own race, 4 the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption to sonship; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. 5 Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised![a] Amen.
- Romans 9:5 Or Messiah, who is over all. God be forever praised! Or Messiah. God who is over all be forever praised!
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectHave you ever felt wounded by a friend who has shown no interest in, or has even poured scorn on, something or someone you hold dear? What was your reaction?
Today, as I write, it feels like spring has arrived: a clear blue sky and bright sunshine. But with the sun, there’s a cold wind. It’s still only March.
At the end of Romans 8, there is glorious sunshine as Paul reflects that nothing can separate him from God’s love. But suddenly, at the beginning of chapter 9, the sun goes in, and a cold wind blows as Paul turns his mind, and ours, to Israel’s rejection of Jesus, the Messiah. The wind cuts like a knife and he is devastated. Nothing can separate him from the love of God, but he’d be willing to put that to the test, if only his own people would come to believe in Jesus (v 3). Such passion! When did I last feel anything approaching that about family and friends who do not believe?
What makes it worse is that Israel’s unbelief seems so illogical. They have been given so much: they are adopted, they belong, they will inherit, and Christ is theirs – God’s indescribable gift (2 Corinthians 9:15). Why turn away? The hint of an answer comes in verse 5. Christ is for the Jews, but he is also ‘God over all.’
Pray for those you love who seem to be bemused by the faith you hold and by which you are held.
Loving Father, in my mind’s eye I bring before You those members of my family who are not walking with You. I claim them for You.
Click here to sign up to receive the EXTRAs via email each quarter.
© 2023 Scripture Union U.S.A. All rights reserved. Reproduction of the whole or any part of the contents without written permission is prohibited.
Discovery is published in the USA under license from Scripture Union England and Wales, Trinity House, Opal Court, Opal Drive, Fox Milne, Milton Keynes, MK15 0DF.