November 02, 2023 – Thursday
Romans 11:17-18 NKJV
17 And if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and with them became a partaker of the root and fatness of the olive tree, 18 do not boast against the branches. But if you do boast, remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you.
Romans 11:17-18 ESV
17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree, 18 do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you.
When I wrote yesterday of the God’s promises to Abram (Genesis 123), it reminded us that God remains in charge and His promises are alive and active even today. I was moved to write of that based upon the events in Israel that began on October 7, 2023. I do not believe it will go well for those who attacked Israel nor for those who support them.
Today, I wish to show how closely attached we are to Israel and those of the Jewish faith. First and foremost, as Christians we accept a risen Jewish rabbi as our Lord and Savior. We also accept the New Testament as ‘our’ Bible though it was written by Jews. And I like to remind myself of what an elder once told me, “The Old Testament is the New Testament concealed. And the New Testament is the Old Testament revealed.” Pretty astute for a man who flew bombers in World War II, though I doubt he originated it.
Also, for those who have a difficult time with that, I would refer you to Isaiah 53 which is all about Jesus and Him crucified. Many Jews in reading that chapter have been led to accept Jesus the Christ as their Messiah. I mention this because the Old Testament is literally the foundation for the New Testament. It was the Bible that Jesus and His disciples quoted hundreds of times in the New Testament. Thus we ignore it at our own risk.
Above I have excerpted two verses from Romans 11:11-24, that show that we (Gentiles) have been grafted into the tree meant first for the Jews as Paul makes clear. We see that in verses 17-18, 17 And if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and with them became a partaker of the root and fatness of the olive tree, 18 do not boast against the branches. But if you do boast, remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you. The branches broken off were Jewish non-believers who did not accept Jesus as their Messiah. We, Gentiles, who believe were grafted in among the Jewish believers.
I like what Ellicott’s Commentary says about this, The Gentile is, as it were, a branch grafted into a stem that was none of his planting. Nor is his position absolutely secured to him. It is held conditionally on the tenure of faith. He ought, therefore, anxiously to guard against any failure in faith.
When Paul writes of the Gentiles as a wild olive tree, he was not being insulting as his past as a Pharisee might have led him to do. Instead, he simply notes that God had long chosen Israel and the Jewish people as His own, and not any other nation or people. That changed to include everyone or rather anyone who had faith in the resurrected Christ Jesus, that is, Christians.
Bottom Line: God’s promises stand, even for those of us grafted into His tree. Consequently, those who wish to eradicate Jewish people from the earth, Christians are next on their list.
Prayer: Almighty God, Thank You for grafting us into Your tree along with all those who first believed. I know my future is with You, Your Son, and the Holy Spirit. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Still writing and working for the Glory of God