In this podcast, I work through Romans 10 to show how most Israelites were not saved because they refused to believe. The notes pasted below are from a sermon that I preached several years ago on the passage.
God gives an open-ended promise in verse 13. With such a promise, God declares Israel’s rejection inexcusable. Why is Israel’s rejection inexcusable? God lays out an argument before us reasoning with us the Israel is without excuse. In the passage, God begins His reasoning by laying some agreed-on prerequisites for salvation. Here are four conditions required for calling.
- Israel cannot call on the Lord unless they believe into Messiah (14)
Note the strength of the preposition. It indicates personal attachment. The book of John uses this concept a lot.
- Israel cannot believe into the Messiah unless they hear Him (14)
Understand, it’s not just simply hearing about the Messiah, it’s actually hearing Him (note the Greek). A person hears the Messiah when He hears accurate teaching concerning the Messiah.
- Israel cannot hear the Messiah unless heralds proclaim the Him (14)
Preachers are heralds. A herald is someone who goes forth proclaiming something his superior said. So, preachers are to proclaim exactly what God says. When a person hears the herald, he hears the king. When a person hears the preacher, he hears the God.
- Heralds cannot proclaim unless they are commissioned (15)
Who does the commissioning? This passage does not say directly, but let’s look at the context. Look down at verse 16. Where is the quote taken from? Isaiah was commissioned by God in chapter 6 of his book. God commissions the preacher. We know this fact from other portions of Scripture. For instance, where God says, “Pray the Lord of the harvest that He will send forth laborers.”
Do we all agree that these things must occur for someone to call on the name of the Lord?
Ok, take out a pen and paper. Write down these four Questions:
- Question 1: Do they believe?
- Question 2: Have they heard?
- Question 3: Have they preached?
- Question 4: Have they been commissioned?
With those pre-required conditions in mind, why, then, is Israel’s rejection inexcusable? And how does Israel’s rejection apply to you as a Christian? Look at the text; God answers these questions.
- Questions 3-4: Has God sent preachers to Israel and are they preaching? Yes, God has sent preachers to Israel and they are preaching (15)
- God declares that Israel is freed from the Babylonian captivity, so that they may know Him (Isaiah 52:1-6).
(Illustration: Picture here messengers running from the field of battle, and watchmen on the walls rejoicing at the bringing of Good News of victory)
- Messengers declare (PREACH) the reign of the Lord (Isaiah 52:7-10). What does this reign look like? In part, this reign looks like chapter 53.
- God commissions the messengers (16; Isaiah 6)
Application: Just as God has sent preachers to Israel, God has sent preachers to you. You sit here Sunday after Sunday listening to Pastor Hawkey preach the Word. Do not be like Israel who rejected what God have them. (Illustration: Note the availability of God’s Word, namely, books, sermons, Sermon Audio, and more)
- Question 1: Has Israel believed? No, Israel has disbelieved the Gospel (16-17)
- Obedience to the Gospel is believing the Gospel (16)
- The main point of the message is the Servant of the Lord (Isaiah 53)
- God recaps the argument (17)
Application: Just like Israel disbelieved the Gospel, so it may be tonight that someone in this room has refused to obey the Gospel. How long will you refuse the Gospel? ….)
- Question 2: Has Israel heard? Yes, Israel has heard the Gospel (18)
- Psalm 19 is, as one preacher said, about Skies and the Scriptures.
- God quotes this passage to confirm that Israel is condemned because they have refused even the natural revelation about God (18). (Illustration: note different beauties in nature: everyday phenomenon[sunset, rainbows, plants]; the flood phenomenon [grand canyon, fossils])
Application: Just like Israel was condemned for refusing the revelation given to them, so you will be condemned for refusing God’s revelation to you. Are you ignoring God’s light which he is
- Did Israel understand? Yes, they understood, but Israel has rejected the full knowledge of God (19-21)
- Because Israel provoked God, God will provoke Israel in return. Even the foolish people can understand (Deuteronomy 32:21)
- People who do not know God find God(Isaiah 65:1)
- God has made himself available to all (Isaiah 65:2)
Application: God often deals with people based on how they approach Him. With the merciful, God shows himself merciful; with the upright, God shows himself upright; with the pure, God shows himself pure; but with the crooked, God shows himself crooked. If you deal deceitfully with God, God will deal with you in a way that is similar so that you will not approach him in the same fashion.
Israel was condemned for not believing the light that they received. Let’s apply this fact to us: take that sheet of paper on which you were writing things down. Now look at the questions and ask them to yourself: has God sent messengers to you? Have they been preaching? Have you heard? Have you believed? God has also opened up His arms to you much like he has done to Israel. You have the preachers, sermon audio, books and even the Bible in you language and readily available to hear. Listen to the Word of God; if you do not believe into Jesus, you will be condemned to hell. If you reject, your rejection is inexcusable. I’m talking to the unbeliever here, why do you refuse to believe the Word of God? Why do you refuse the Glorious Gospel? Why do reject your God? Listen to His love and put all your confidence in Him.
What about you, Christian, who refuse to do what the Lord asks you to do? Has He shown you something through your Word which you need to change? Is it an action? A thought? A sin? God wants you to follow the light which you are given. Trust in Him! Complete trust is what He desires from you =).