Christ, Righteousness, and Chosen-ness

Romans 10Brothers, it’s my heart’s desire to see the chosen people live in their chosen-ness.

While zealous, their zeal is not based on knowledge; they were ignorant in the fact that only God brings true righteousness, so they thought they’d establish their own righteousness– one of works. Christ came to end this, once and for all, that righteousness by works was replaced with a righteousness by belief, righteousness by faith.

Moses describes righteousness like this: the man who keeps the law lives by the law. The righteous by faith say, “Don’t ask ‘Who ascends to heaven?’ or “Who descends to the deep?'” Christ does not need to continue to descend and ascend as the Father did at the Tabernacle and Temple. Christ is nearer to us– in our mouths and on our hearts. This alone is our proclamation: confessing with our mouths, “Christ is LORD” and believing in our hearts that Christ has been raised form the dead. In our hearts we believe and find justification while with our mouths we proclaim verbally. Scripture says plainly this truth: all who trust in him will not be put to shame. In this, there is no difference between Jew and Gentile- God is Lord of All and blesses all who call to him. ALL who call upon the name of the Lord find salvation. But…

How can they call on what they do not believe in?
How can they believe if they’ve not heard?
How can they hear of they’ve not been preached to ?
Who can preach if they’ve not been sent?
How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!

They (the “chosen”) heard. They were preached to. People were sent both TO and FROM them. But, not all of the “chosen” accepted it. Not all believed it. Even Elijah asked, “Who, LORD, believed?” We know that faith comes by hearing- the message is HEARD. The words of Christ…HEARD. But, did the “chosen” hear? Of course.

Their voice has gone out to all of the world, to the ends of the earth.

We ask, “Did they not understand?”

Moses said,

I’ll make you envious by others. I’ll make you angry by the understanding and acceptance of others. I’ll drive the “chosen” mad because I’ll accept the Gentiles

Isaiah said,

I (God) was even found by those not seeking me out. I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me

About Israel, the “chosen,” God said (again, through Isaiah),

All day I’ve waited, arms and hands outstretched to them. It is they who disobedient, they who are unwilling.

-Romans 10

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