Having explained in chapters 9-10 why all Israel isn’t saved, that begs a question: Since Israel has rejected God, is God done with them? Paul answers in chapter 11 with a resounding NO! Though Israel is currently set aside, God will restore her. God’s rejection of Israel is neither total (all Israel) nor final (for all time).
God has graciously saved some Israelites but has judged the rest (vv. 1-10). Israel’s spiritual status depends on God’s choice and their response to the gospel. While God has graciously saved some Jews (“a remnant,” “the elect,” vv. 2-6), he has judged unbelieving Israel by hardening them in their unbelief (“blinded,” vv. 7-10).
God has temporarily set Israel aside but he will restore her (vv. 11-36). Israel’s current status is not their permanent status (final, for all time). Because most Israel did not believe in Jesus, the blessings of the gospel are now made directly available to the world (vv. 11-15). This demands that Gentile believers should be humble, not proud (vv. 16-24). God will, however, turn his attention back to Israel resulting in their salvation (vv. 25-32). Israel will continue in blindness until the full number of Gentiles are saved, after which Israel will be saved (vv. 25-27). Then God will fulfill his promises to Israel and show them mercy (vv. 28-32).
The right response to these truths must is to glorify God (vv. 33-36), for his infinitely wise plans (v. 33) are above human understanding (vv. 34-35) for he is the source, support, and end of all things (v. 36).
Truths to Nail Down and Meditate On
- God never breaks, goes back on, or revokes his promises. Never. Israel’s future is certain because God’s call is irrevocable (v. 29)—impossible to be changed, unalterable, and unconditional. God’s gracious promises are always fulfilled.
- The “remnant” (v. 5) refers to a small number of Israelites (Jews) who have trusted in Christ. That must encourage Christians that God is faithful to his promises to Israel and someday will fulfill everything he promised to them.
- Sadly, Christians can become proud of their salvation (v. 25)! This must be repented of. Consider that you were lost, that in yourself you had no hope, and it was only by God’s rich grace and mercy that you heard must less believed in Christ!