Election 3: God's Sovereign Glory
Topic: AM Service Passage: Romans 9:19–29
In Romans 9, Paul expresses his anguish over his kinsman who do not believe in Jesus Christ the Messiah and who therefore reject the mercy of the God who made a covenant with their forefather, Abraham. Then Paul proceeds to answer an objection which follows – that the failure of the Jews to embrace Christ is evidence of the failure of God’s Word. He does this by pointing out that it is not natural or external children who are saved, but only those who are the children of the promise; and further, that God secures His people through His sovereign election. This brings another objection that God is unjust for electing some and not others. Paul answers this objection from the Scriptures, saying that God has every right to show mercy on those whom He will. This, in turn, leads to yet another objection – that if it all depends on God’s will, then people have no responsibility for their rejection of Christ. Paul answers this objection also (after pointing out the arrogance of man replying against God) by God has every right to display His glory through mercy to some and through His wrath to others. All of this is set against the backdrop of God’s just condemnation of sin; while God is responsible for salvation, people are responsible for the judgment that comes on their sin, all for “God’s Sovereign Glory” (Romans 9:19-29).
I. The Right of God’s Glory
A. The Attitude of the Objection
B. The Reality of the Objection
II. The Reason for God’s Glory
A. In Wrath
B. In Mercy
III. The Revealing of God’s Glory
A. In the Case of the Gentiles
B. In the Case of the Jews
Questions for consideration: (1) What is the underlying reason that people object to God’s sovereignty? What do they think they gain by that objection? (2) What does this passage teach us about the wrath of God? What does it teach us about the character of God? (3) How do the Old Testament passages that Paul quotes apply to you and your relationship with God?