05. PREPARED FOR THE FATHER’S GLORY

It is written in Rom 9:23, What if he did this to make the riches of his glory known to the objects of his mercy, whom he prepared in advance for glory. From this verse, we find a difficult problem which must be solved, that is the phrase “prepared in advance for glory”. If the Israelite is prepared for God’s glory, that means He wants to show His power through that nation, so the whole world will know that the Elohim of Israel, is a great God. But it is not like that for the New Covenant people, or for the believers. In the believers’ life, they are prepared to glorify God by performing perfect behavior, like Lord Jesus, and through that, the Father will be glorified. Therefore, the believers are called to live amazingly in behavior (Matt 5:20,48), so it could become the glory for the Father and Lord Jesus (Matt 5:16).

It is written in Rom 9:24-26, even us, whom he also called, not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles? As he says in Hosea:“I will call them ‘my people’ who are not my people; and I will call her ‘my loved one’ who is not my loved one, ”and, “In the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people, ’there they will be called ‘children of the living God.’ ” This statement clearly says that the world is entering the era where many people, including the non-Jews, can become the chosen people with the status as the children of the Father. The question now is: Will all those who believe in Jesus be surely saved?

If we see in Rom 9:27 … Isaiah cries out concerning Israel: “Though the number of the Israelites be like the sand by the sea,only the remnant will be saved, the original text of Israelite is “the children of Israel” (υἱῶν Ἰσραὴλ). Does this refer to the Israelite by the flesh and blood, or does it actually refers to all believers (either the Israelite by the flesh and blood, or the non Jews)? The second possibility is greater, because it refers to a huge community like the sand by the sea. But not all who are called as the elected, could become the permanent chosen people, and enter the Kingdom of Heaven as the Royal Family member. This is confirming the explanation that there are natural and wild branches which could be cut off.

Furthermore, it is written in Rom 9:28-29, For the Lord will carry out His sentence on earth with speed and finality. It is just as Isaiah said previously: “Unless the Lord Almighty had left us descendants, we would have become like Sodom, we would have been like Gomorrah”. In this writing, Paul has expanded his thought orientation, not only on the Jews, but also universally. The phrase “left us descendants”, means that God still surely upholds the believers who remain in His mercy. This is intended so there are people, who still want to struggle to be perfect or get saved; that is restored to God’s original design.

Finally Paul says, What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; but the people of Israel, who pursued the law as the way of righteousness, have not attained their goal. Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone. As it is written:“See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes people to stumble and a rock that makes them fall, and the one who believes in him will never be put to shame.” Paul reaffirms in this verse that, justification of human, is not because of the works based on the Law, but based on faith. The Jews must accept the reality that, the pride as the chosen people by the blood and flesh as Abraham’s children has no meaning anymore, if compared with justification by the sacrifice of Lord Jesus on the cross. Therefore, becoming chosen people by the flesh and blood, that is the Israelite, is God’s determination based on His sovereignty, but the eternal salvation to be children of Israel based on faith, depends on each individual’s respond and responsibility.

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