The Place of Israel in the Scheme of Redemption: As Set Forth in Romans 9-11 Part 2 -- By: Henry Clarence Thiessen

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 098:390 (Apr 1941)
Article: The Place of Israel in the Scheme of Redemption: As Set Forth in Romans 9-11 Part 2
Author: Henry Clarence Thiessen


The Place of Israel in the Scheme of Redemption:
As Set Forth in Romans 9-11
Part 2

Henry Clarence Thiessen

(Concluded from the January-March Number, 1941)

IV. The Extent of Israel’s Rejection (11:1-10).

We may quote Godet and Sanday and Headlam for the transition to the present section. Godet says: “The apostle has proved in ch. 9 that when God elected Israel, He did not lose the right one day to take the severest course against them, if it should be necessary. Then he has showed in ch. 10 that in fact there was a real ground and moral necessity for this measure. He proceeds, finally, to establish in ch. 11 that it was taken with all due regard to the position of this people, and within the limits in which it should subserve the salvation of mankind and that of Israel themselves.” Sanday and Headlam say: “St. Paul has now shown (1) (9:6–29) that God was perfectly free, whether as regards promise or His right as creator, to reject Israel; (2) (9:30–10:21) that Israel on their side by neglecting the Divine method of salvation offered them have deserved this rejection. He now comes to the original question from which he started, but which he never expressed, and asks, Has God, as might be thought from the drift of the argument so far, really cast away His people? To this he gives a negative answer, which he proceeds to justify by showing (1) that this rejection is only partial (11:1–10), (2) only temporary (11:11–25), and (3) that in all this Divine action there has been a purpose deeper and wiser than man can altogether understand (11:26–36).” We shall now show that Paul teaches that the rejection of Israel is only partial.

1. We have the evidence of Paul’s own case (v. 1). As has just been said, looking back at the argument thus far, Paul realizes that the readers may conclude that God had completely and finally broken with all Israel; therefore the

then (Godet). His answer is an emphatic No. He cites the fact that he himself is an Israelite, that is, he is a member of the covenant people; that he is of the seed of Abraham, i.e., not a proselyte (Denney); that he is of the tribe of Benjamin, “the one tribe which with Judah mainly represented the post-exilic theocratic people” (Denney). Saul, the son ...

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