Letter to Christians in Rome: Chapter 9 (pt 3 of 13)

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Israel had a unique vantage point from which they should have received the Messiah of God—yet they rejected Him. It was not a rejection through ignorance, because they had a unique knowledge of God and the Word of God. The Pharisees, who were the Doctors of the Law, could read the Old Testament in Hebrew, like no one today. The average Pharisee of Jesus’ day would put today’s Hebrew scholars to shame. They knew every nuance, every connotation of that language, inside and out. They read Isaiah 53 with more knowledge of the language of that passage of Scripture than any scholar alive today. They read all of the promises that foretold the Messiah in their native language, with great feeling for it, and yet when the Messiah came, they missed Him. Here is the problem: knowing Hebrew and Greek does not necessarily guarantee you knowledge of God’s Word—You need to know the Author of the Book, so that He can explain its meaning to you.

The point is that you must not waste the opportunities you have. Israel wasted theirs. They, for all their knowledge of God and experiences with God, rejected the Messiah, which opened the door for us. Yes, their redemption is yet to come, but now it our responsibility to share the exciting news of our Messiah.

The reality is that people will choose to reject Christ. Just look around. There are people who do not want God in their life. They want to be the one in control. They want nothing to do with a God who will limit what they want to do.

Having the right opportunities does not guarantee they will make the right choice, either. Just as Israel rejected the truth despite all God did for them, people do the same today.

It is always a terrible tragedy when anyone rejects Christ. It does not matter who they are, when anyone fails to surrender to Christ, they are sealing their eternal destiny. The result of such a course of action is eternal condemnation and hell.

Our hearts should be broken for those who reject Christ. God’s heart is broken for them, however sinful they are,. If we would have a heart like God’s, our heart must be broken as well.

Where are you in this scenario? Are you considering Christ? Then don’t reject Him. Take whatever time you need to investigate His claims. You will find them to be true.

Are you broken-hearted over the spiritual destiny of those who are not following Christ? They are your neighbors. They are your co-workers. They are your family. They are your friends.

In his song, “Don’t Tell Them Jesus Loves Them,” Steve Camp sang:

“Don’t tell them Jesus loves them
till you’re ready to love them too
Till your heart breaks from the sorrow
and the pain they’re going through
With a life full of compassion
may we do what we must do
Don’t tell them Jesus loves them
till you’re ready to love them too.”

Get it? We must be willing to lay our lives down for those we see. Later we will read chapter 12, but in verses 9-13, in the Living Bible, it says: “Don’t just pretend you love others: really love them. Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side of the good . . . [then the heart of it says,] when you see God’s children in need, you be the one to help them out.” I love that! Don’t call the Pastor, don’t pat them on the shoulder and say, “it’ll get better soon . . .” No! When you see the need—you be the one to help them.

If interested, you can download the entire study of The Letter to Christians at Rome

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