“But I ask: Did they not hear? Of course they did: ‘Their voice has gone out into all the earth, their words to the end of the world.’
“And again I ask: Did Israel not understand? First, Moses says, ‘I will make you envious by those who are not a nation; I will make you angry by a nation that has no understanding.’
“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.’
“But concerning Israel he says, ‘All day long I have held out my hands to a disobedient and obstinate people.'” Romans 10:18-21.
So that’s it! Why did God turn away from His own people and open the door of faith to a people who were not in a covenant relationship with Him? As much as God’s people hated the Gentiles, from a human perspective, they only had themselves to blame for rejecting their Messiah and opening the way for the Gentiles to become part of God’s family of believers.
In their zeal for God, the Jews believed that their way of attaining righteousness through observing the law was the right way. They refused God’s invitation to receive the righteousness of Christ by faith as a gift, and forfeited their place in God’s family. Instead of simply believing the message about Christ, which is the way in which faith comes and grows, they stubbornly persisted in trying to do it their way.
There was no lack of opportunity to hear the message – it was proclaimed all day and all around them, but God’s judgment was on them because they were obstinate and disobedient. God does not arbitrarily condemn anyone without giving him an opportunity to believe in Him at the level at what they can see, hear and understand. Even if they never hear the words about Jesus, creation itself speaks of His power and deity to anyone who will listen.
“The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress that truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them because God has made it plain. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities – His eternal power and divine nature – have been clearly seen, being understood by what has been made, so that they are without excuse.” Romans 1:18-20.
However, God is determined to have a family. Since the Jews both refused to obey Him and refused to be His messengers to the Gentiles about Him, He opened the door to the Gentiles anyway, every though they did not purposely seek Him. Such is the love and mercy of God that He offers His free gift of grace to anyone who will receive it. He does not force Himself on those who do not want Him. The message is clear, even in the world around, but if people choose to believe that the universe just happened, or that it was produced by some hypothetical explosion caused by who knows what, then it’s up to them to believe the lies and take the consequences.
Truth can neither be altered nor destroyed. Truth is truth, whatever humans may say. People may decide that the Bible was corrupted or that it is myth or fable or untrue or whatever else they may think about it, but they cannot change the fact that it is the Word of God and that those who believe it are transformed by what they read.
God has mercy and grace for everyone who hears the message and receives Jesus Christ as Messiah and God. For “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:13.
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