Romans Chapter 11 Continued

Romans 11:16 "For if the first fruit [be] holy, the lump [is] also [holy]: and if the root [be] holy, so [are] the branches."

The “first fruit” is the first portion of the harvest, which was to be given to the Lord.

“The lump is also holy”: Because the first fruit offering represented the entire portion, the entire piece of dough could be said to be holy, set apart to God.

“The root”: The root of the tree is the covenantal promise to Abraham, which anticipated blessing to Jew and Gentile. Israel’s essential nature is holy (set apart of God’s purpose). The first fruit signifies Abraham; the branches refer to Israel individually.

James 1:18 "Of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures."

Jesus Christ is the root. In fact, He is the Tree and we are the branches. A peach tree does not produce apples, but peaches. If Christ is the tree, then we Christians are the branches. A Christian should be Christ like.

 

In (verses 17-24), Paul sternly warns the Gentiles against pride and arrogance because of Israel’s rejection and their being grafted in.

Romans 11:17 "And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;"

Some, but not all of the branches of Israel were broken off or removed. God always preserved a believing remnant. “A wild olive tree … grafted in”: Olive trees were an important crop in the ancient world. Although trees often lived for hundreds of years, individual branches eventually stopped producing olives. When that happened, branches from younger trees were grafted in to restore productivity.

Paul’s point is that the old, unproductive branches (Israel), were broken off and branches from a wild olive tree (Gentiles), were grafted in.

Once grafted in, Gentiles partake of the richness of God’s covenant blessings as the spiritual heirs of Abraham.

The Olive tree: The place of divine blessing, God’s covenant of salvation made with Abraham.

The natural branches were the physical house of Israel (Hebrews), and we Christians are the grafted in branches. All believers are the spiritual house of Israel.

Ephesians 3:6 "That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:"

Romans 11:18 "Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee."

There is no place in the church for spiritual pride, still less for anti Semitism. We are the spiritual offspring of Abraham.

Branches: The unbelieving Jews who had been broken off.

The root that supports you means Gentiles are not the source of blessing, but have been grafted into the covenant of salvation that God made with Abraham.

Romans 11:19 "Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in."

Some of the branches of Israel were broken off or removed. Paul’s point is that the old, unproductive branches (Israel), were broken off and branches from a wild olive tree (Gentiles), were grafted in. Once grafted in, the Gentiles could partake of the richness of God’s covenant blessings as the spiritual heirs of Abraham, but as we learn in the next scripture, they were not to brag about that.

Romans 11:20 "Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:"

We Christians are like faithful Abraham: saved by faith in Jesus Christ.

Galatians 3:29: "And if ye [be] Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise."

Lack of faith got the Hebrew branches cut off and our faith got the Gentile Christian branches grafted in. Without faith it is impossible to please God.

Branches were broken off and others grafted in based solely on the issue of faith, not race, ethnicity, social or intellectual background or external morality.

Salvation is ever and always by faith alone.

God will judge the apostate church just as surely as He judged apostate Israel.

Romans 11:21 "For if God spared not the natural branches, [take heed] lest he also spare not thee."

If Israel, the “natural branches” was not spared despite being God’s covenant nation, why should Gentiles, strangers to God’s covenants expect to be spared if they sin against the truth of the gospel?

Romans 11:22 "Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in [his] goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off."

All of God’s attributes work in harmony, there is no conflict between His goodness and love, and His justice and wrath. Those who accept His gracious offer of salvation experience His goodness. Those who reject it experience His severity.

“On them which fell”: The unbelieving Jews described (in verses 12-21). “Fell” translates a Greek work meaning “to fall so as to be completely ruined.” Those who reject God’s offer of salvation bring upon themselves utter spiritual ruin.

“If thou continue”: Genuine saving faith always perseveres. God will deal swiftly and severely with those who reject Him.

Revelation 2:5 "Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent."

God will help us, if we love Him and do our best to follow Him.

Romans 11:23-24 "And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again." "For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural [branches], be graffed into their own olive tree?"

Luke 21:24 "And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled."

The “they” is speaking of the Jews. The end of the Gentile age is near. God's blessings will go back to the physical house of Israel.

Jeremiah 31:33 "But this [shall be] the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people."

Hebrews 8:10 "For this [is] the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:"

You see, this is not a statement of just the Old Testament, but of the New Testament as well. God loves all Israel; physical and spiritual. Those two are the branches of the olive tree.

In the future, Israel will repent of unbelief and embrace the Messiah. In the terms of Paul’s analogy, God will at that time, gladly graft the believing Jewish people back into the olive tree of His covenant blessings because it was theirs originally, unlike the wild branches, the Gentiles.

Romans 11:25 "For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in."

The word mystery is used to refer to New Testament truth previously not revealed. This mystery has two components.

(1) Israel has experienced a partial spiritual hardening; and

(2) that hardening will last only for a divinely specified period of time.

“Wise in your own conceits”: Is another warning to the Gentiles against spiritual pride and arrogance.

“Blindness in part”: Although the nation’s blindness does not extend to every individual Jew. Through all of history God has always preserved a believing remnant.

“Until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in”: “Until” refers to a specific point in time, “fullness” refers to completion, “has come in”: translates a Greek verb often used to speak of coming to salvation. Israel’s spiritual hardening (which began with rejecting Jesus as Messiah), will last until the complete number of elect Gentiles has come to salvation.

It greatly concerns me when I hear someone run our Jewish brothers down. We have been warned over and over in the Holy Bible not to think ourselves better than the natural Hebrew. We are not the tree. We do not decide who is part of the tree and who is not. The tree, (Jesus) decides which branches He will accept and which branches He rejects.

It is none of our business. He does not have to explain to you and me why He does it either. We should just be happy that He allowed us to be grafted into the tree.

Romans 11:26 "And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:"

This verse and the next are (quoted from Isaiah 59:20-21).

“All Israel”: All of the elect Jewish people alive at the end of the tribulation, not the believing remnant of Jews within the church during this church age. Since the remnant has already embraced the truth of the gospel, it could not be in view here, since it no longer needs the salvation this verse promises.

“There shall come out of Zion the Deliverer”: The Lord Jesus Christ’s millennial rule will be associated with Mt. Zion.

(These next three verses show the Israelites awakening).

Zech. 12:10-11 - "I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn. "In that day there will be great mourning in Jerusalem, like the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the plain of Megiddo.

Isaiah 53:5 - But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

Isaiah 11:10-12 - The Root of Jesse
"And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious." "And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea."

Romans 11:27 "For this [is] my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins."

“Covenant”: The New Covenant. “When I shall take away their sins” (quoted from Isaiah 27:9). A necessary prerequisite for Israel’s salvation.

Jeremiah 31:33 "But this [shall be] the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people."

So many people I know do not want to believe that God will forgive the physical house of Israel. This is so strange to me, because we were not worthy of His forgiveness and He forgave us. Why would He not forgive His chosen family? My Bible says that every knee will bow and every tongue confess Jesus when they see Him coming in the clouds.

Romans 11:28 "As concerning the gospel, [they are] enemies for your sakes: but as touching the election, [they are] beloved for the fathers' sakes."

This is Israel’s temporary situation during her time of spiritual hardening.

“Touching the election”: From the perspective of God’s eternal choice, Israel will always be His covenant people.

“The father’s sakes”: The patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who are the recipients of the Abrahamic Covenant.

Romans Chapter 11 Continued Questions

1.  If the first fruit be holy, the lump is also____.

2.  If the root be holy, so are the ________.

3.  Jesus is the root, and who are His branches?

4.  Christians are called what in verse 17?

5.  Who is of the spiritual house of Israel?

6.  Revelation 11:4 is speaking of whom when it speaks of the two olive trees?

7.  We are warned to boast not against whom?

8.  In 11:19 it appears that the Christians brag that physical Israel was cut off, why are they bragging?

9.  Be not ____ ______ but fear.

10. How are Christians like Abraham?

11. Without _____, it is impossible to please God.

12. In Romans 11:22, we are told to behold what 2 things?

13. In Romans 11:22 and in Ezekiel 33:18 we see what, that is opposed to not being able to lose your salvation once you have it?

14. Who is God, besides being a forgiving God?

15. Revelation 2:5 gives us one word that tells us how to get back to God, what is it?

16. What hopeful statement for the natural Israelite is made in Romans 11:23?

17. How long will Jerusalem be trodden down by the Gentiles?

18. In Jeremiah 31:33  what is the covenant God made?

19. Blindness in part is happened to Israel until when?

20. How much of Israel shall be saved in Romans 11:26?

21. In Micah 7:18, we read that God pardoneth iniquity because He delights in what?

22. Where will He cast all their sins?

23. Eventually who will bow to Jesus?

24. In Jeremiah 31:33 God places His law where?

25. These of the house of Israel pertaining to election are beloved for whose sake?

26. Whose name was on the 144,000 in Revelation 14:1?

27. In Revelation 7:14, who were those dressed in white?

28. Why is the answer to 26 and 27 important?

29. We find in Jeremiah, there will come a day when we will not teach each other of God; then how will we know?

30. God will remember their _____ no more.

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