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Romans 9:1-5                                                 


Thumbnail -After personal reflections, Paul lists seven privileges God has granted to the Israelites-the apostle’s community of origin: divine adoption, glory, covenants, the giving of the law, worship, promises, and the patriarchs from whom the Messiah descended. Paul, thus affirms the prominent role and place that the Jewish people have among Christians.

The Problem of Rejection - In the background of the glorious, redemptive work of Jesus that Paul has just concluded in chapters 1-8, there looms a dark question: What about God’s chosen people? Paul’s own people have rejected the very Christ who was born from their race . . . How can God’s salvific plan for humanity be complete without them? How much comfort is it if nothing can separate us from God’s love when there is apparently something quite capable of separating the chosen people from God’s love? What is their fate?

Cathartic? - Paul’s statements are not only empathetic and instructive, but perhaps even cathartic; the apostle is willing to suffer to loss of his own relationship with Christ if it would mean transformation and salvation for his own people. Such reflects a passion and commitment that can inspire each generation of Christians to engage their culture with the gospel of Jesus.


Recall a moment when you admonished, wheedled, pleaded, or cajoled with someone to consider (re-consider) a particular course of action.

What lengths have some groups gone to "convert" persons to their cause-especially if the candidate for conversion shares common ground with the group?

Why might baring one’s soul about something/someone we truly value become cathartic?


Summarize the basic notion in chapters 1-8 of how God has closed the gap.

Raise the issue of one gap that resists bridging: the problem of chapter 9.

Paul’s struggle is our honest struggle within a pluralistic world.

Suggest how God is working to bring about the redemption of all creation.