Pauls Footsteps #361

“Concerning the Gentiles, God says in the prophecy of Hosea, “Those who were not my people, I will now call my people. And I will love those whom I did not love before.”26 And, “Then, at the place where they were told,   ‘You are not my people,’
there they will be called  ‘children of the living God.’ Romans 9:25-26 NLT 

Footsteps #361. The crucial point in all this discussion on the sovereign will of God being able to choose some individuals or nations for a purpose, is that as fallen human beings we have such a narrow view of the world, of reality, and of God and how He works in the world. How can we expect to understand all of God’s ways when the natural world, everywhere we turn, holds mysteries we can’t understand? After all, it was only in the past 170+ years that doctors learned it might be a good idea to wash their hands before performing surgery! That’s how steeped in ignorance we have been. And who knows, if time should last, what other things we will discover in the future that will reveal just how steeped in ignorance we are today? 

In Romans 9:25 Paul quotes Hosea 2:23, and in Romans 9:26 he quotes Hosea 1:10. The background is that God instructed Hosea to “go and marry a prostitute” (Hos. 1:2 NLT) as an illustration of God’s relationship with Israel because the nation had gone after strange gods. The children born to this marriage were given names signifying God’s rejection and punishment of idolatrous Israel. The third child was named Loammi (Hos. 1:9), meaning literally “not my people.” 

Yet, amid all this, Hosea predicted that the day would come when, after punishing His people, God would restore their fortunes, take away their false gods, and make a covenant with them. (see Hos. 2:11-19). At this point, those who were Loammi, “not my people,” would become Ammi, “my people.” 

In Paul’s day, the Ammi was “even us, . . . not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles” (Rom. 9:24). What a clear and powerful presentation of the gospel, a gospel that from the start was intended for the whole world. Today, as in Paul’s day, and as in the days of ancient Israel, the good news of salvation is to be spread throughout the world. Notice how much Paul quotes the OT through vs25-29. 

God’s promises do not fail, there was a remnant who accepted Christ. The hope we can have is that, in the end, God’s promises will be fulfilled, and if we claim those promises for ourselves, they will be fulfilled in us, as well.

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