PAUL’S ALLS (Cont)

We are continuing our walk through Romans looking at Paul’s use of “all” and its synonyms and antonyms and his inclusivity and exclusivity.

In chapter 9 Paul begins to explain to the Roman Christians that not all of Jews are Christians and that being an Israelite is not required to accept Christ. That theme continues through chapters 10 and 11 as follows:

9: 6-7 “…for not ALL who are descended from Israel are Israel. Nor because they are his descendants are they ALL Abraham’s children.”

10: 4 “Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for EVERYONE who believes.”

10: 11-12 “As the scripture says, ‘ANYONE who trusts in Him will never be put to shame.’ For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile- The same Lord is Lord of ALL and richly blesses ALL who call on Him, for EVERYONE who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

10: 16 “But not ALL the Israelites accepted the good news.”

10: 18 “Their voice has gone out into ALL the world.”

10: 21 “But concerning Israel He says, ‘ALL day long I have held out My hands to a disobedient people.’”

11: 3 “Lord, they have killed Your prophets, and torn down Your altars; I am the ONLY ONE left, and they are trying to kill me.” (Quoted from Elijah)

11: 26 “And so ALL Israel will be saved…”

11: 32 “For God has bound ALL men over to disobedience so that He may have mercy on them ALL.”

11: 36 “For from Him and through Him and to Him are ALL things. To Him be the gory forever! Amen.”

After Paul has explained the relationship between Israel and God and that Jesus came for all people as we’ve just read, Paul jumps into chapter 12. As an introduction to this chapter, let me just say I am a highlighter. My Bible is full of passages that I have marked in yellow, but there are not very many chapters that are highlighted in their entirety. Romans 12 is one that is solid yellow (and blue). It is one of the most significant chapters in my life and in fact I had about 4 posts on the first two verses back in July 9-14, 2017. He starts the chapter by addressing the Roman Christians (Gentiles) as brothers:

12: 1 “Therefore, I urge you BROTHERS, in view of God’s mercy to offer your bodies as living sacrifices holy and pleasing to God…”

12: 3 “For by the grace given to me I say to EVERY ONE of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought…”

12: 4 “Just as each of us has one body with many members and these members do not ALL have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body and each member belongs to ALL the others.”

12: 17-18 “Do not repay ANYONE evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of EVERYBODY. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with EVERYONE…”

These are tough instructions for us, but he does say “if it is possible.” He also says “as far as it depends on you”; we can’t control how others will react, but we can make every effort from our perspective to “live at peace with everyone.”

We should conclude this series of posts next time. It’s been a little longer than I anticipated; likely because I underestimated how much Paul had to say in this letter and how important it is to our Christian walk.

 

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