Well then, has God failed to fulfill His promise to Israel? No, for not all who are born into the nation of Israel are truly members of God's people!
Being descendants of Abraham doesn't make them truly Abraham's children. For the Scriptures say, "Isaac is the son through whom your descendants will be counted," though Abraham had other children, too. Notice how God refers to Ishmael in Gen 22:2. He doesn't! God says to Abraham, "Take your son, your only son. . ."
Abraham could be forgiven for replying, "But God I have two sons."
The point is that God doesn't recognise what we have accomplished in the flesh while spurning His promise.
This means that Abraham's physical descendants are not necessarily children of God. Only the children of the promise are considered to be Abraham's children.
For God had promised, "I will return about this time next year, and Sarah will have a son."
This son was our ancestor Isaac. When he married Rebekah, she gave birth to twins.
But before they were born, before they had done anything good or bad, she received a message from God. (This message shows that God chooses people according to His own purposes;
He calls people, but not according to their good or bad works.) She was told, "Your older son will serve your younger son."
In the words of the Scriptures, "I loved Jacob, but I rejected Esau." Rom 9:6-13
No God’s promise hasn’t failed. The conditions of the promise were not adhered to. Not everyone will receive the promise. Who is the true Israel?
Paul answers his questions in the following paragraph.
Not all who are born into the nation of Israel are truly God's children!
Being descendants of Abraham doesn't make them truly Abraham's children.
Only the children of the promise are considered to be Abraham's children.
But before they were born, before they had done anything good or bad, she received a message from God. In the words of the Scriptures, "I loved Jacob, but I rejected Esau." Rom 9:6-13
But hang on a minute. That’s not fair! Before they had done anything bad or good God says I loved Jacob and rejected Esau. This puts us right in the middle of the issues related to predestination. I don’t intend to get into the debate on free will and predestination. Just remember the comment made in Bible Gemz 200. Clearly there is selection, favouritism, call it what you like. But God does make this choice. Such that he can say Jacob I loved yet Esau I hated. Note the meaning has changed. In the text above it reads rejected but it is literally hated [μισέω]. By comparison with the love it fits in the category of “unloved” or ‘hate’ in the extreme.
Notice Paul’s use of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob – (9:5, 9:7, 9:10, 9:13) He is working his way through the patriarchs. Why? To show there has always been this pattern. Some chosen, some not. The theme of a remnant is prevalent in the Bible. Abraham had a son of the flesh and then one of the promise. Both were not chosen. Both were not included in the promise. Remember what God said about Abraham and why he was chosen to be the father of the faithful. Ishmael shows that to be born a descendant of Abraham does not automatically mean you inherit the promises. God was actively involved in choosing Isaac. He was not involved in the affair of Ishmael. That was all Abraham’s doing. Therefore he was not chosen as a child of the promise. Remember what John said. “However, to all who received him, to those believing in his name, he gave authority to become God's children, who were born, not merely in a physical sense, or from a fleshly impulse, or from man's desire, but of God.” (John 1:12-13) Same God, same principle.
Then look at Jacob infers Paul. Jacob and Esau turn the normal human principles on their head. Jacob is chosen before he has done anything to warrant selection. Also note all the normal criteria are dispensed with. Esau was the first born. He had the right of selection, to be chosen. But that is not how it happened. “The older will serve the younger”. God made the selection by foreknowledge. “See” says Paul to the Jews, He (God) was doing it back then too. God’s choice was sovereign and not determined by human effort or intent. That is the way He has always done it. God changed Jacob’s heart but left Esau unchanged. Why? “Because God is God and I am not and I can only see a part of the picture He’s painting.” Steven Curtis Chapman with thanks to Sidney Mohede for the reminder. Thanx Sid.
You can impress people from a distance, but you have to get up close to people to love and influence them
There is a world of difference between talking TO someone & talking WITH someone. Ian