God’s Sovereign Choice
9 aI am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit— 2 that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. 3 For bI could wish that I myself were caccursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers,1 my kinsmen daccording to the flesh. 4 They are eIsraelites, and to them belong fthe adoption, gthe glory, hthe covenants, ithe giving of the law, jthe worship, and kthe promises. 5 To them belong lthe patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, mwho is God over all, nblessed forever. Amen.
6 But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For not all who are descended from Israel belong to Israel, 7 and not all are children of Abraham obecause they are his offspring, but p“Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.” 8 This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but qthe children of the promise are counted as offspring. 9 For this is what the promise said: r“About this time next year I will return, and Sarah shall have a son.” 10 And not only so, but salso when Rebekah had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, 11 though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad—in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of thim who calls— 12 she was told, u“The older will serve the younger.” 13 As it is written, v“Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”
14 What shall we say then? wIs there injustice on God’s part? By no means! 15 For he says to Moses, x“I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” 16 So then it depends not on human will or exertion,2 but on God, who has mercy. 17 For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, y“For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.” 18 So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills.
19 You will say to me then, “Why does he still find fault? For zwho can resist his will?” 20 But who are you, O man, ato answer back to God? bWill what is molded say to its molder, “Why have you made me like this?” 21 cHas the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump done vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use? 22 What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience evessels of wrath fprepared for destruction, 23 in order to make known gthe riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he hhas prepared beforehand for glory— 24 even us whom he ihas called, jnot from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles? 25 As indeed he says in Hosea,
k“Those who were not my people I will call ‘my people,’
and her who was not beloved I will call ‘beloved.’”
26 l“And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’
there they will be called m‘sons of the living God.’”
27 And Isaiah cries out concerning Israel: n“Though the number of the sons of Israel3 be as the sand of the sea, oonly a remnant of them will be saved, 28 for the Lord will carry out his sentence upon the earth fully and without delay.” 29 And as Isaiah predicted,
pq“If the Lord of hosts had not left us offspring,
rwe would have been like Sodom
and become like Gomorrah.”
30 What shall we say, then? sThat Gentiles who did not pursue righteousness have attained it, that is, ta righteousness that is by faith; 31 but that Israel uwho pursued a law that would lead to righteousness4 vdid not succeed in reaching that law. 32 Why? Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as if it were based on works. They have stumbled over the wstumbling stone, 33 as it is written,
x“Behold, I am laying in Zion ya stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense;
10 Brothers,1 my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved. 2 For I bear them witness that bthey have a zeal for God, cbut not according to knowledge. 3 For, being ignorant of dthe righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. 4 For eChrist is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.2
The Message of Salvation to All
5 For fMoses writes about the righteousness that is based on the law, that gthe person who does the commandments shall live by them. 6 But hthe righteousness based on faith says, i“Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down) 7 “or ‘Who will descend into the jabyss?’” (that is, kto bring Christ up from the dead). 8 But what does it say? l“The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); 9 because, if myou confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and nbelieve in your heart othat God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11 For the Scripture says, p“Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” 12 qFor there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; rfor the same Lord is Lord of all, sbestowing his riches on all who call on him. 13 For t“everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
14 How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him uof whom they have never heard?3 And how are they to hear vwithout someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, w“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” 16 But xthey have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, y“Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?” 17 So zfaith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
18 But I ask, have they not heard? Indeed they have, for
a“Their voice has gone out bto all the earth,
and their words to the ends of the world.”
19 But I ask, did Israel not understand? First Moses says,
c“I will dmake you jealous of those who are not a nation;
with a efoolish nation I will make you angry.”
20 Then Isaiah is so bold as to say,
f“I have been found by those who did not seek me;
I have shown myself to those who did not ask for me.”
21 But of Israel he says, g“All day long I have held out my hands to a disobedient and contrary people.”
The Remnant of Israel
11 I ask, then, hhas God rejected his people? By no means! For iI myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham,1 a member of the tribe of Benjamin. 2 jGod has not rejected his people whom he kforeknew. Do you not know what the Scripture says of Elijah, how he appeals to God against Israel? 3 l“Lord, they have killed your prophets, they have demolished your altars, and I alone am left, and they seek my life.” 4 But what is God’s reply to him? m“I have kept for myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.” 5 So too at the present time there is na remnant, chosen by grace. 6 oBut if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works; otherwise grace would no longer be grace.
7 What then? pIsrael failed to obtain what it was seeking. The elect obtained it, but the rest qwere hardened, 8 as it is written,
r“God gave them a spirit of stupor,
seyes that would not see
and ears that would not hear,
down to this very day.”
9 And David says,
t“Let their table become a snare and a trap,
a stumbling block and a retribution for them;
10 let their eyes be darkened so that they cannot see,
and bend their backs forever.”
Gentiles Grafted In
11 So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather, through their trespass usalvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. 12 Now if their trespass means riches for the world, and if their failure means riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their full inclusion2 mean!
13 Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as vI am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry 14 in order somehow to make my fellow Jews jealous, and wthus save some of them. 15 For if their rejection means xthe reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance mean but life from the dead? 16 yIf the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, so is the whole lump, and if the root is holy, so are the branches.
17 But if zsome of the branches were broken off, and you, aalthough a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root3 of the olive tree, 18 do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you. 19 Then you will say, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” 20 That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you bstand fast through faith. So cdo not become proud, but dfear. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you. 22 Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God’s kindness to you, eprovided you continue in his kindness. Otherwise fyou too will be cut off. 23 And geven they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again. 24 For if you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, the natural branches, be grafted back into their own olive tree.
The Mystery of Israel’s Salvation
25 hLest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers:4 ia partial hardening has come upon Israel, juntil the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. 26 And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,
k“The Deliverer will come lfrom Zion,
he will banish ungodliness from Jacob”;
27 “and this will be my mcovenant with them
nwhen I take away their sins.”
28 As regards the gospel, they are enemies for your sake. But as regards election, they are obeloved for the sake of their forefathers. 29 For the gifts and pthe calling of God are irrevocable. 30 For just as qyou were at one time disobedient to God but now have received mercy because of their disobedience, 31 so they too have now been disobedient in order that by the mercy shown to you they also may now5 receive mercy. 32 For God rhas consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all.
33 Oh, the depth of the riches and swisdom and knowledge of God! tHow unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!
34 “For uwho has known the mind of the Lord,
or vwho has been his counselor?”
35 “Or wwho has given a gift to him
that he might be repaid?”
36 For xfrom him and through him and to him are all things. yTo him be glory forever. Amen.
A Living Sacrifice
12 zI appeal to you therefore, brothers,1 by the mercies of God, ato present your bodies bas a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.2 2 cDo not be conformed to this world,3 but be transformed by dthe renewal of your mind, that by testing you may ediscern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.4
Gifts of Grace
3 For fby the grace given to me I say to everyone among you gnot to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, heach according to ithe measure of faith that God has assigned. 4 For jas in one body we have many members,5 and the members do not all have the same function, 5 so we, kthough many, lare one body in Christ, and individually mmembers one of another. 6 nHaving gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if oprophecy, pin proportion to our faith; 7 if qservice, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; 8 the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; rthe one who leads,6 with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with scheerfulness.
Marks of the True Christian
9 tLet love be genuine. uAbhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. 10 vLove one another with brotherly affection. wOutdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not be slothful in zeal, xbe fervent in spirit,7 yserve the Lord. 12 zRejoice in hope, abe patient in tribulation, bbe constant in prayer. 13 cContribute to the needs of the saints and dseek to show hospitality.
14 eBless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15 fRejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16 gLive in harmony with one another. hDo not be haughty, but associate with the lowly.8 iNever be wise in your own sight. 17 jRepay no one evil for evil, but kgive thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. 18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, llive peaceably with all. 19 Beloved, mnever avenge yourselves, but leave it9 to the wrath of God, for it is written, n“Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” 20 To the contrary, o“if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Submission to the Authorities
13 Let every person pbe subject to the governing authorities. For qthere is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you rwill receive his approval, 4 for she is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, tan avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also ufor the sake of conscience. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. 7 vPay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.
Fulfilling the Law Through Love
8 wOwe no one anything, except to love each other, for xthe one who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 For the commandments, y“You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and any other commandment, are summed up in this word: z“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore alove is the fulfilling of the law.
11 Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you bto wake from sleep. cFor salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. 12 dThe night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us ecast off fthe works of darkness and gput on the armor of light. 13 hLet us walk properly as in the daytime, inot in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, jnot in quarreling and jealousy. 14 But kput on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, lto gratify its desires.