Romans 11:5-6 Chosen By Grace

“So too, at the present time there is a remnant chosen by grace. And if by grace, then it cannot be based on works; if it were, grace would no longer be grace.” Romans 11:5-6

As Paul talked about how God was sending His message of salvation to the Gentiles, some may have been wondering if God rejected Israel. He points out that God did not reject them by showing how God had a remnant of people serving Him during the time of Elijah when he thought he was the only one. God still had a remnant of people chosen who were following Him as Paul write’s this letter. These people were chosen by grace, not works.

As a person looks at the world, it can look pretty grim and full of evil. At times it may seem like that person is the only believer left. Yet, there is still a remnant of believers out there. God has already chosen them. These are people who have heard the Gospel message and chosen to follow Jesus. They accepted the calling of God’s Holy Spirit on their lives.

They did not become a part of the remnant by working hard and doing things. They became a part of the remnant by God’s grace on their lives. They did not deserve that position, yet was given it by God.

All religions have people working to earn their life in heaven. Christianity is different in that life in heaven is a gift that has to be accepted. Not just anyone can be a part of the remnant. Only those who have accepted the death and resurrection of Jesus can be a part of it.

No matter how much you work at it, you will never be one of the remnant, unless you accept the work of Jesus. It is by His grace that you are saved. You do not deserve to do God’s work on this earth.

With that in mind, do all that you can do for God if you are a part of the chosen remnant. If you are a believer in Jesus and follow Him, then you are a part of the remnant.

Do not bow down to the ways of this world. Do the work God has for you. Don’t do the work to earn your salvation, but do it because Jesus has saved you.

I pray today that you will know the work Jesus has done for you; that you will know the grace Jesus has for you; that you will not work for your salvation; that you will be a part of the remnant of God who will love and serve Him; and that you will know the work God has for you to do on this earth.

Romans 10:20 Found By The Unexpected

“And Isaiah boldly says, I was found by those who did not seek me; I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me.” Romans 10:20

Paul quotes from Isaiah 65:1, where God is talking about being found by people who were not really seeking Him. God had chosen the Israelites for His people, yet they had rejected Him and went their own ways. The rest of the world, the Gentiles, had chosen to follow idols, yet many ended up finding God.

During the time of Paul, many of the Israelites were stating that they were following God, yet at the same time rejected Jesus. They felt like they knew what they were doing and were in the right. When the gospel message about Jesus was brought to them, many rejected it. When that same message was brought to the idol worshipping Gentiles, many received it. God was found by those who were not really looking for Him.

Two things can be seen in this. First, as a believer in Jesus, are you really seeking Him or just an experience of just being saved? Many believers today just want to be saved so that they do not go to hell. Their salvation has very little to do with a relationship with Jesus and God the Father.

The second thing is that as a believer you need to tell everyone about Jesus. Everyone includes those who are hardened sinners who don’t look or act like they would want to hear about Jesus. This includes the people of other false religions. This includes people who do not believe in God or Jesus. These are people who are not seeking God.

It is these very people who may find God in what you tell them. God may touch their hearts and open their eyes when you are a witness to them. Give everyone a chance to accept or reject Jesus. Unless they are told they do not have that opportunity. Too often believers will not tell them because they do not expect them to accept Jesus. Yet, God may already be working on their hearts and minds. Give them a chance.

Make sure you are seeking God in your life and then go and tell everyone you can about Jesus.

I pray today that you will seek the desires of God for your life; that you will be willing to be bold and tell everyone you can about Jesus; that Jesus will draw many to Him through your testimony; and that God will reveal Himself to others.

Romans 10:14 How Can They Know?

“How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? Romans 10:14

Paul had just talked about how a person is saved. It is by believing in what Jesus had done–dying on the cross and raising from the dead. It is by confessing that Jesus is Lord. Then he begins to ask a few good questions. Those questions simplify down to how can someone believe in someone who they have never heard about?

Growing up in the 1970s it seemed like everyone knew about Jesus. You could not go anywhere without seeing a sign or hearing of someone saying something about Jesus. He seemed to be very popular. Since then things have changed.

Today it is very uncommon to see things in the public about Jesus. Many people believe (or at least claim to believe) in God. Yet, when you ask them about what they believe, they really don’t know. Most people do not believe in Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Many others believe in Jesus, but also believe in Allah, Buddha, and all other gods out there.

For those that do not believe in Jesus, many it is because they have never really heard of Him outside of jokes on television or as a curse word. They do not know who He is because no one has told them.

If you are a believer in Jesus, at some point in your life someone told you about Him. Had they not told you, you would not be a believer today.

In this same way you must tell others about Jesus. Paul calls it preaching. That word scares many people. They feel they must be a certified minister to preach. Yet, all that is, is telling others what they know about Jesus.

Will you be willing today to tell someone about Jesus? Tell them what He has done for you and can do for them. Tell them about His love for them.

Tell everyone you meet about Jesus, and see who God can touch and change their hearts. Some of those you tell will turn to Jesus. Remember they cannot believe in Jesus unless you tell them about Jesus.

I pray today that Jesus will be real in your heart and life today; that you will believe in Jesus as your Lord and Savior; that you will tell others about Jesus; and that Jesus will draw many to Himself through your testimony.

Romans 10:2-3 Wrong Zeal For God

“For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. Since they did not know the righteousness of God and sought to establish their own they did not submit to God’s righteousness.” Romans 10:2-3

Paul is talking about the Israelites. He would love to see them saved. Here he points out that they were very zealous for God, but they did not know the righteousness that God provided. In the end they were building their own rules of what righteousness was and refused to accept God’s righteousness.

Things have not changed for people. Many people (at least in America) believe in God and attempt to stand for what He wants. In their zeal for God they get extremely judgmental and start to make rules on various things that God never directly stated anything. They are making up their own rules on what it means to be righteous before God.

Some examples of these types of rules are: no playing cards, no dancing, wearing only certain types of clothing, and eating only certain foods. While all of these things may be good for a certain person, or good rules to live by, none of them are absolute rules by God. None of these make a person more or less righteous before God.

Only in Jesus is a person righteous at all. It is by His grace and mercy that you can be a righteous person.

Jesus did lay down some rules and many principles to live by. They were guidelines on how to make choices in life. They are to guide you in how to live a righteous life before God and do His will.

You need to be zealous for God. You need to get excited and tell everyone about God. You need to stand strong and true for God and His Word. But in all of this you must be standing in the right position. It must all be based on the righteousness of Jesus. It must be done with His love, grace and mercy.

Do not be zealous the way the world gets zealous: judgmental, condemning, better-than-thou, and demanding. Don’t just give a bunch of rules to live by.

Strive to point all to Jesus. Show people the righteousness that Jesus provides. Be zealous for God in Jesus.

I pray today that you will know the righteousness that Jesus provides; that you will be zealous for Jesus; that you will tell everyone about Jesus; and that you will be zealous with God’s love, grace and mercy.

Romans 9:27 Only The Remnant Are Saved

“Isaiah cries out concerning Israel: Though the number of the Israelites be like the sand by the sea, only the remnant will be saved.” Romans 9:27

Paul quotes Isaiah 10:22 in this verse. During the time of Isaiah, the nation of Israel was about to be overcome and destroyed as a nation. They had stopped following God and were worshipping idols and He was about to destroy them. Yet, God left a remnant to be saved. There were still a few that followed Him faithfully.

About 600 years later, the quote was able to be used again. The Israelites were refusing to really follow God. This time, however, they were rejecting Jesus in trying to following God. There were several million Israelites, yet only a remnant were going to be saved. Only a few would actually choose to follow Jesus.

Now fast-forward to today and the scene is really no different. Although today one can look at the entire world and all the people of every nation, rather than just Israel. There are approximately 7 billion people on the earth. Estimates say that about 2.2 billion are Christian. This number includes anyone who claims to be Christian. It does not weed out those who never go to church, read the Bible, or pray, but just claim Christ in name only. That number is about 32% of the world’s population.

This means only 1 out of every 3 people claim Jesus is some form or other. Remember that Jesus said not everyone who claims His name will be saved. It is only those who do His will.

There is only a small remnant of people today who will be saved. Only a small remnant who will actually do what God wants them to do. Only a small remnant who will stand strong for God’s ways. Only a small remnant who will strive to be holy as Jesus is holy. Only a small remnant who will be a light in this dark world. Only a small remnant who will love God with all their heart, soul, mind and strength. Only a small remnant who will love their neighbors and enemies as God loves them.

Are you one of the remnant? Or will you be like the many who claim God, but rejected Jesus? Will you be saved in the end?

I pray today that you will love God with everything in you; that you will do the will of God for your life; that you will be a part of His remnant who will be saved; that you will be His witness in this world; and that you will love all others as Jesus loves them.