Monday, 5 February 2018

Good Question?

In first century Judaisms, terms like 'foreknew' and 'election' expressed the Jews' feeling that their nation was elect;
and the 'sovereignty' question was a debate about whether God would bring about Israel's political destiny all on His own, or whether the Jews should fight for it militarily.
So when Paul answered with the claim that God's purpose centred around the Person of Jesus Christ, and all those who by grace through faith belong to Him, including the Gentiles, without them needing to become proselytes to Judaism, it naturally gave rise to questions like:
What about Israel then?

Had God's promises to them failed?

Was it unfair of God to have elected them to be custodians of the promised-salvation, only to now see their nation by-and-large missing out, because of unbelief?
Was God over saving Jews? Was the mission from now on only to Gentiles?
Those were the types of issues Paul dealt with, in Romans 9-11 - in order to promote and preserve the unity of the faith, in the mixed Gentile/Jewish congregation at Rome.
He wasn't dealing with the question which Calvinists and Arminians hotly debated in the 16th/17th centuries: "Why does one individual get saved, and not another". Good question maybe (or maybe not!) - but it simply wasn't what Paul was talking about.

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