Read: Romans 9:25-29
My family adopted my little brother Frank* last year. His biological family made significant poor life decisions that caused them to lose custody of their son. So my parents took him into our family as their own son. And now he can enjoy a healthy, loving relationship with his family rather than being left in a dangerous one. My little brother did not choose this relationship, but nothing compares to the joy he expressed when he learned he was getting adopted. Though he didn’t understand it fully, even at his young age he realized the joy of adoption and celebrated accordingly.
When we think of where we would be if God had not chosen us, we should rejoice like my brother did when he joined our family. Here, Paul uses the language of adoption to describe our relationship with God. In Romans 9:26, quoting Hosea 1:10, Paul says those who were once “not my people,” are now called “children of the living God.”
This also means that we should desire for others to join the family of God as well. Just as Paul was willing to lay down his life so that others would know the love of God, we should greatly desire that for those around us. Not everyone can confidently say, “I am loved by God.” Because of God’s sovereign choice, those who are Christians are able to rejoice, because He loves us.
In Romans 9:25-29, Paul quotes a list of verses from the Old Testament to prove his point. He is explaining the reason that many Jews have rejected the Gospel in his day, even though God had made important promises to them in the Old Testament. Paul’s overall point is that God had chosen a special group of Israel from within Israel to be called according to His promise and that others would reject Him. The promise does not come based on ethnicity, but because of God’s sovereign choice.
Having made this point, Paul is now able to say that Gentiles (people who are not Jewish) were always a part of God’s plan. This effectively counters the question Paul brought up in verse 6, “” The problem was that we misunderstood God’s word all along! The Gentiles were to be included in the people of God, but it took Christ rising from the dead and His disciples spreading the Gospel throughout the world for us to see how that would happen.
This is something we should celebrate. If the promise of God was given according to ethnicity, then most of us would miss it, since most of us are not Jewish. Yet, because the promise depends on God’s own sovereign choice, we are able to enjoy the loving relationship we have with Him.
*Frank’s name was changed for his privacy.
What is the proper response to God’s love for us? Have you responded appropriately? Remember that because of God’s sovereign choice, you are part of the family of God! Now, forever you can say confidently, “I am loved by God!”