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1 I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbidde. For I also am an Israelite of the seede of Abraham, of the tribe of Beniamin.

2 God hath not cast away his people which hee foreknew. Wote yee not what the Scripture saieth of Elias? how hee maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying,

3 Lord, they haue killed thy Prophets, and digged downe thine Altars, and I am left alone, and they seeke my life.

4 But what saieth the answere of God vnto him? I haue reserued to my selfe seuen thousand men, who haue not bowed the knee to the image of Baal.

5 Euen so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace.

6 And if by grace, then is it no more of workes: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it bee of workes, then is it no more grace, otherwise worke is no more worke.

7 What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for, but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded,

8 According as it is written, God hath giuen them the spirit of slumber: eyes that they should not see, and eares that they should not heare vnto this day.

9 And Dauid sayth, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumbling blocke, and a recompense vnto them.

10 Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow downe their backe alway.

11 I say then; Haue they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid. But rather through their fall, saluation is come vnto the Gentiles, for to prouoke them to ielousie.

12 Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them, the riches of the Gentiles: how much more their fulnesse?

13 For I speake to you Gentiles, in as much as I am the Apostle of the Gentiles, I magnifie mine office:

14 If by any means I may prouoke to emulation them which are my flesh, and might saue some of them.

15 For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world: what shal the receiuing of them be, but life from the dead?

16 For if the first fruite bee holy, the lumpe is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches.

17 And if some of the branches bee broken off, and thou being a wilde oliue tree wert graffed in amongst them, and with them partakest of the roote and fatnesse of the Oliue tree:

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

19 Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might bee graffed in.

20 Well: because of vnbeliefe they were broken off, and thou standest by fayth. Be not high minded, but feare.

21 For if God spared not the natural branches, take heede least hee also spare not thee.

22 Beholde therefore the goodnesse and seueritie of God: on them which fell, seueritie; but towards thee, goodnesse, if thou continue in his goodnesse: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.

23 And they also, if they bide not still in vnbeliefe, shall be graffed in: for God is able to graffe them in againe.

24 For if thou wert cut out of the Oliue tree which is wilde by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good Oliue tree: how much more shall these which be the naturall branches, bee graffed into their owne Oliue tree?

25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should bee ignorant of this mysterie (least yee should bee wise in your owne conceits) that blindnesse in part is happened to Israel, vntill the fulnes of the Gentiles be come in.

26 And so all Israel shall be saued, as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliuerer, and shall turne away vngodlinesse from Iacob.

27 For this is my couenant vnto them, when I shall take away their sinnes.

28 As concerning the Gospel, they are enemies for your sake: but as touching the election, they are beloued for the fathers sakes.

29 For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

30 For as yee in times past haue not beleeued God, yet haue now obtained mercy through their vnbeliefe:

31 Euen so haue these also now not beleeued, that through your mercy they also may obtaine mercy.

32 For God hath concluded them all in vnbeliefe, that he might haue mercy vpon all.

33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisedome and knowledge of God! how vnsearchable are his iudgements, and his wayes past finding out!

34 For who hath knowen the mind of the Lord, or who hath bene his counseller?

35 Or who hath first giuen to him, and it shall bee recompensed vnto him againe?

36 For of him, and through him, and to him are all things: to whom be glory for euer. Amen.

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Commentary for Romans 11

The rejection of the Jews is not universal. (1-10) God overruled their unbelief for making the Gentiles partakers of gospel privileges. (11-21) The Gentiles cautioned against pride and unbelief, The Jews shall be called as a nation, and brought into God's visible covenant again. (22-32) A solemn adoring of the wisdom, goodness, and justice of God. (33-36)1-10 There was a chosen remnant of believing Jews, who had righteousness and life by faith in Jesus Christ. These were kept according to the election of grace. If then this election was of grace, it could not be of works, either performed or foreseen. Every truly good disposition in a fallen creature must be the effect, therefore it cannot be the cause, of the grace of God bestowed on him. Salvation from the first to the last must be either of grace or of debt. These things are so directly contrary to each other that they cannot be blended together. God glorifies his grace by changing the hearts and tempers of the rebellious. How then should they wonder and praise him! The Jewish nation were as in a deep sleep, without knowledge of their danger, or concern about it; having no sense of their need of the Saviour, or of their being upon the borders of eternal ruin. David, having by the Spirit foretold the sufferings of Christ from his own people, the Jews, foretells the dreadful judgments of God upon them for it, #Ps 69|. This teaches us how to understand other prayers of David against his enemies; they are prophecies of the judgments of God, not expressions of his own anger. Divine curses will work long; and we have our eyes darkened, if we are bowed down in worldly-mindedness.

11-21 The gospel is the greatest riches of every place where it is. As therefore the righteous rejection of the unbelieving Jews, was the occasion of so large a multitude of the Gentiles being reconciled to God, and at peace with him; the future receiving of the Jews into the church would be such a change, as would resemble a general resurrection of the dead in sin to a life of righteousness. Abraham was as the root of the church. The Jews continued branches of this tree till, as a nation, they rejected the Messiah; after that, their relation to Abraham and to God was, as it were, cut off. The Gentiles were grafted into this tree in their room; being admitted into the church of God. Multitudes were made heirs of Abraham's faith, holiness and blessedness. It is the natural state of every one of us, to be wild by nature. Conversion is as the grafting in of wild branches into the good olive. The wild olive was often ingrafted into the fruitful one when it began to decay, and this not only brought forth fruit, but caused the decaying olive to revive and flourish. The Gentiles, of free grace, had been grafted in to share advantages. They ought therefore to beware of self-confidence, and every kind of pride or ambition; lest, having only a dead faith, and an empty profession, they should turn from God, and forfeit their privileges. If we stand at all, it is by faith; we are guilty and helpless in ourselves, and are to be humble, watchful, afraid of self-deception, or of being overcome by temptation. Not only are we at first justified by faith, but kept to the end in that justified state by faith only; yet, by a faith which is not alone, but which worketh by love to God and man.

22-32 Of all judgments, spiritual judgments are the sorest; of these the apostle is here speaking. The restoration of the Jews is, in the course of things, far less improbable than the call of the Gentiles to be the children of Abraham; and though others now possess these privileges, it will not hinder their being admitted again. By rejecting the gospel, and by their indignation at its being preached to the Gentiles, the Jews were become enemies to God; yet they are still to be favoured for the sake of their pious fathers. Though at present they are enemies to the gospel, for their hatred to the Gentiles; yet, when God's time is come, that will no longer exist, and God's love to their fathers will be remembered. True grace seeks not to confine God's favour. Those who find mercy themselves, should endeavour that through their mercy others also may obtain mercy. Not that the Jews will be restored to have their priesthood, and temple, and ceremonies again; an end is put to all these; but they are to be brought to believe in Christ, the true become one sheep-fold with the Gentiles, under Christ the Great Shepherd. The captivities of Israel, their dispersion, and their being shut out from the church, are emblems of the believer's corrections for doing wrong; and the continued care of the Lord towards that people, and the final mercy and blessed restoration intended for them, show the patience and love of God.

33-36 The apostle Paul knew the mysteries of the kingdom of God as well as ever any man; yet he confesses himself at a loss; and despairing to find the bottom, he humbly sits down at the brink, and adores the depth. Those who know most in this imperfect state, feel their own weakness most. There is not only depth in the Divine counsels, but riches; abundance of that which is precious and valuable. The Divine counsels are complete; they have not only depth and height, but breadth and length, #Eph 3:18|, and that passing knowledge. There is that vast distance and disproportion between God and man, between the Creator and the creature, which for ever shuts us from knowledge of his ways. What man shall teach God how to govern the world? The apostle adores the sovereignty of the Divine counsels. All things in heaven and earth, especially those which relate to our salvation, that belong to our peace, are all of him by way of creation, through him by way of providence, that they may be to him in their end. Of God, as the Spring and Fountain of all; through Christ, to God, as the end. These include all God's relations to his creatures; if all are of Him, and through Him, all should be to Him, and for Him. Whatever begins, let God's glory be the end: especially let us adore him when we talk of the Divine counsels and actings. The saints in heaven never dispute, but always praise.

Commentary by Matthew Henry, 1710.

Discussion for Romans 11

  • Eric
    On the second paragraph of this chapter's commentary, I beg to differ. One Abraham is not the root but Christ is. We are are grafted in Christ as the olive tree for He alone is Holy and hence if the root be holy so are the branches. Second we are saved by grace hence made heirs through the faith of Christ and not Abraham, Abraham was mere man like the rest of us. John 1:12, we are children of God.
  • LYLE R SHORT
    The olive tree analogy is speaking only of Israel and Gentiles who became part of Israel. That has to be the case since the body of Christ never had or has conditional salvation, but Israel did. To truly understand this chapter one has to know all the rest of Paul's epistles. Israel, the body of Christ and the little flock of faithful Jews are separate entities.
  • Bob
    In it's context, Romans 9, 10 and 11 is to and about the nation of Israel, how they had it's standing with God, how they lost its' special standing when they rejected Christ and how they will be born again during Christ's second coming. They were born the first time in Exodus 4:22 when they were delivered out of Egypt and received the Old Covenant, they will be required to be born again.
  • D W L
    Amen, Alex Jesus said you Must be Born Again. Very easy to see there is no debate or what we think it’s MUST.
  • BSP
    Verse 33: there is no end to what we can learn about Jehovah God’s thoughts, words, or ways.
  • Gonzalo
    As silly humans we try to rationalize, dispute, make arguments, make our own private interpretations , But in verse : 33--- O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! is the answer, we will never understand his ways.---There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the LORD..

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