Here are 9 observations from Romans 9. (By the way, they’ll make more sense if you first hear the message, so click here to listen to it or download it.)
1. God is the initiator of salvific acts; man is the recipient of, and responder to, salvific acts.
2. God is without blame for man’s rejection, yet solely responsible for man’s redemption.
3. Believing by faith in the message of Christ is our best response when we hear the Gospel.
4. This response, or lack of one, is a real choice with a real consequence.
5. These choices, or responses, do not stem from an absolute free will, but instead from influenced desires, meaning they are the result of and flow from one of two real natures – a depraved one or a regenerated one.
6. Fervent evangelism and a deep love for lost people are rooted in a biblical understanding of God’s sovereign choices and purpose. The reason we are apathetic in our disciple making is not because we have talked about them too much, but rather because we have talked about them too little!
7. Our unwillingness and fear to drown ourselves in the depths of God’s vast sovereignty has dreadfully led us to rob him of glory, see him as “small and barely lifted up,” undermine his justice, mock his grace, and embrace a man-centered view of salvation (a.k.a. Soteriology).
8. Man is not the center of all God’s efforts. He himself is! God’s own glory is the ultimate end of all history, and both ‘good and bad’ are woven together into that final objective.
9. While we wait for the day of maximum glory to God, we do not aim to “figure God out;” rather, we commit to worshipping him and proclaiming him so that all nations will hear the message of Christ and be saved.