Ark of the Covenant - Bible History Online
Bible History Online
Picture Study Bible with Maps and Background Information

Romans 11:29 for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.

< Romans 11:28
Romans 11:30 >

      29. For the gifts and calling--"and the calling"
      of God are without repentance--"not to be," or "cannot be repented of." By the "calling of God," in this case, is meant that sovereign act by which God, in the exercise of His free choice, "called" Abraham to be the father of a peculiar people; while "the gifts of God" here denote the articles of the covenant which God made with Abraham, and which constituted the real distinction between his and all other families of the earth. Both these, says the apostle, are irrevocable; and as the point for which he refers to this at all is the final destiny of the Israelitish nation, it is clear that the perpetuity through all time of the Abrahamic covenant is the thing here affirmed. And lest any should say that though Israel, as a nation, has no destiny at all under the Gospel, but as a people disappeared from the stage when the middle wall of partition was broken down, yet the Abrahamic covenant still endures in the spiritual seed of Abraham, made up of Jews and Gentiles in one undistinguished mass of redeemed men under the Gospel--the apostle, as if to preclude that supposition, expressly states that the very Israel who, as concerning the Gospel, are regarded as "enemies for the Gentiles' sakes," are "beloved for the fathers' sakes"; and it is in proof of this that he adds, "For the gifts and the calling of God are without repentance." But in what sense are the now unbelieving and excluded children of Israel "beloved for the fathers' sakes?" Not merely from ancestral recollections, as one looks with fond interest on the child of a dear friend for that friend's sake [DR. ARNOLD]--a beautiful thought, and not foreign to Scripture, in this very matter (see 2Ch 20:7; Isa 41:8) --but it is from ancestral connections and obligations, or their lineal descent from and oneness in covenant with the fathers with whom God originally established it. In other words, the natural Israel--not "the remnant of them according to the election of grace," but THE NATION, sprung from Abraham according to the flesh--are still an elect people, and as such, "beloved." The very same love which chose the fathers, and rested on the fathers as a parent stem of the nation, still rests on their descendants at large, and will yet recover them from unbelief, and reinstate them in the family of God.

JFB.


Questions Related to this Verse

Where in Scripture does it talk about the gifts and blessings of God both now and in heaven?

Where in Scripture does it mention that God is faithful?

Where in Scripture does it mention that God never changes?

Where In Scripture Does It Talk About Perseverance?

Dynamically load content in Bootstrap Modal with AJAX

Select a Chapter

Romans Images and Notes

The Book of Romans

Romans 1:20 - For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, [even] his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

Romans 8:28 - And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose.

Romans in The New Testament - A Brief Overview

Painting of the Apostle Paul by Rembrandt - 1657
Painting of Paul the Apostle by Rembrandt - 1657

Introduction to The Epistle to the Romans

Brief Summary. Paul's message in his profound epistle to the Romans 1-8 is that a man is justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the Law. Righteousness is by Christ alone, and when a man believes in Christ, he becomes dead to sin and the law and alive in Christ. The Holy Spirit sanctifies the believer and empowers him to live a holy life. A relationship with Christ brings adopted sonship and the assurance of salvation from sin. The question about the Jews and their fate is answered in Romans, they were chosen to possess the oracles of the Lord. Romans 9-11 reveals that the Jews failed to recognize Christ as the fulfillment of the Law and rejected their own Messiah. Therefore God rejected Israel, yet, this rejection is not total or final. Paul makes it abundantly clear that God will show mercy to those Jews who acknowledge Jesus as Lord. In Romans 12-16 Paul exhorts the Christians in Rome regarding the practical aspects of the new life in Christ.

Summary of The Book of Romans

Purpose. Paul was called by God to bring Christianity to the gentile world, and to establish churches for worship and ministry. Rome was the capital of the gentile world, and a church had developed there. Paul no doubt knew the strategic value of strengthening the body of believers by laying a strong doctrinal foundation. There is also indications that Paul had desired to preach the Gospel in Spain, and it would have been wise to create a solid base in Rome. Paul was continually challenged by the Jews regarding the Gospel of Christ and the Law of Moses. Paul obviously wanted to clear up any confusion by creating a strong doctrinal statement in his epistle. He addresses the same issues as in his other epistles, false doctrine, false teachers, and troublemakers who would stir up dissension in the church. In the epistle to the Romans Paul also introduces the deaconess Phoebe, he petitions the church at large to pray for the Roman brethren, and to greet the believers in Christ at the church in Rome.

Audience. The epistle begins with "to all God's beloved in Rome" and this would clearly indicate that Paul was addressing the Christian church in Rome. Throughout the book of Romans it is clear that in the church at Rome there were many Jews and gentiles.

Authorship. Paul the apostle is universally accepted as the author of the epistle to the Romans. Throughout the entire letter it is easy to see Paul's sincerity, his unique insights in the teachings about God, the Jews, Jesus and salvation to all mankind. Statements in the epistle indicate that Paul was going to Jerusalem with the collection for the poor which he had gathered (Romans 15:25-27).

Date. The epistle to the Romans appears to have been written near the end of Paul's third missionary journey, probably around 57 or 58 AD. One of the main reasons for this date is because 1 Corinthians and 2 Corinthians refer to this collection and this would indicate that Romans was written just after 1 and 2 Corinthians, toward the end of Paul's third missionary journey. Most scholars date the epistle near AD 58 and name Corinth as the city of its origin.

Outline of the Book of Romans

Doctrine and Theology - Chapters 1-8
God's Plan for Israel -  Chapters 9-11
The New Life in Christ - Chapters 12-16

Jesus written in Hebrew
The Name Jesus In Ancient Hebrew Text
"Yeshua" in First Century Hebrew Text. This is how the name "Jesus" would have been written in ancient Hebrew documents. The four letters or consonants from right to left are Yod, Shin, Vav, Ayin (Y, SH, OO, A). Jesus is the Greek name for the Hebrew name Joshua or Y'shua which means "The LORD or Yahweh is Salvation".

Interesting Notes

- Some ancient manuscripts omit the word, "Rome," scholars generally agree that the epistle was addressed to the Christian church in Rome.

Romans Resources

Map of the Roman Empire (14 AD) - This map reveals the Roman Empire during the time shortly after the birth of Jesus, in 14 AD at the time of the death of Augustus. The order which prevailed in this extensive empire, the good military roads, and the use of Koine Greek as the general language of culture throughout the area were among the factors which multiplied the rapid spread of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (Color Map)

Map of Paul's Third Missionary Journey (54 AD) - This map reveals the areas in Asia and Greece where Paul visited in his third missionary journey. On Paul's third missionary journey he returned to the cities he had first visited on his first missionary journey. During this time he decided to remain in Ephesus for about 3 years, and this city was the main focus of his activities and an important Christian community (Acts 19). (Color Map)

Map of Paul's Voyage to Rome (61 AD) - This map reveals the journey of the Apostle Paul to Rome in 61 AD. Paul had appealed to Caesar in Caesarea (Acts 24-25), his goal was to spread the Gospel of Jesus throughout the Roman Empire all the way to her great capital, Rome. He demanded that his case be heard by the Roman Emperor. According to the Book of Acts, after his shipwreck on the Island of Malta (Acts 28) he came to Italy and was put on house arrest for two years (Acts 28:30). (Color Map)

Map of the New Testament World - This map reveals the "Nations" within the ancient world during the first century A.D., the time of the New Testament. The map includes the areas of Israel, Asia, Greece, and Italy. (Color Map)

Map of New Testament Italy - This map reveals the cities within Italy during the first century A.D., the time of the New Testament. The map includes the principle cities of Italy like Neapolis and Rome. Follow the path of the Apostle.