Feb 2, 2020
Originally Presented: April 6th, 2008
Scripture Reading: Romans 10:15-21
The question that prompts Paul to write Romans 9-11 is the question of the people of Israel. Paul begins his discussion by asking, in effect, "Why aren't all Jews saved?" To that question he poses two answers, one in chapter 9, from the standpoint of divine purpose in divine sovereignty (unconditional election of some Jews, while passing over others) . . . and one in chapter 10, from the standpoint of human responsibility (the refusal of most Jews to believe in Jesus).
In Romans 10:15-21, Paul completes his discussion of Israel's unbelief. He says here, in effect, that Israel has no excuse because the Jews have deliberately rejected the message of Christ and stubbornly refused God's mercy in Him. Writing with Jews in mind, Paul quotes the Old Testament six times in these seven verses. The Jews had opportunity to hear the gospel through their Old Testament writings as well as through preachers like Paul. (Notice how often Paul quotes the Old Testament in Romans 9-11.)
In his argumentation, he writes what has become a very instructive statement for us. "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of Christ" (Rom 10:17). If we desire to have stronger faith, it will only come through our listening to and meditating on the Word of God. There is no deepening of faith apart from the Bible. Let us discard the notion that we can live well without knowing and trusting in the words of the living God.