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Word Studies, Devotionals, Sermons, Illustrations
Old and New Testament.
What shall we
then? There is
God, is there? May it
What shall we conclude then? Is there injustice upon God's part?
ESV: What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God's part?
By no means!
ICB: So what should we say about this? Is God
unfair? In no way.
NIV: What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Not at all!
NKJV: What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with
God? Certainly not!
NLT: What can we say? Was God being unfair? Of course
Philips: Now do we conclude that God is monstrously
Wuest: What shall we say then? There is not unrighteousness with
God, is there? Away with the thought.
Young's Literal: What, then, shall we say? unrighteousness is
with God? let it not be!
B H Carroll
Explore the Bible
Explore the Bible
F B Hole
Jamieson, F, B
S Lewis Johnson
H C G Moule
A T Robertson
Romans 9 Commentary
Romans 9:1-3: The Attributes of God
Romans 9:1-5: Israel: A Privileged
Romans 9:6-13: Israel: A Proud People
Romans 9:14-19: God is a God of Purpose
Romans 9:19-24: God is God of
Romans 9:30-10:5:Righteousness Precious
Romans 9 Commentary
Romans 9:1-5 Burdened For A
Romans 9:6-33 Bound By The
Romans Expository Notes
Romans 9:1-13 Man Opposes; God Disposes
Romans 9:14-23 Divine Election is Questioned
Romans 9:24-33 Israel’s Failure Is the Scripture’s Fulfillment
Romans 9:1-29 Need for Mercy
Romans 9:18: The Sovereignty of God in
Romans 9:30-10:21 Call to
Romans 9-11 What
Will Happen to Israel-
Romans 9:1-9 True and False Believers
Romans 9:7-21 God's Choice and Salvation
Romans 9:22-33 God's Patience and Mercy
Romans 9:1-29 The
Stage for Christ
has God Proved Himself?
Romans 9 Commentary
Romans 9 Commentary
Prologue to Prison (1954)
Romans 9 Commentary
Romans Notes -
Verse by Verse
Romans 9 Commentary
Romans 9:1-13 The Roller Coaster Ride
Romans 9:14-29 The Great Brain Teaser
Romans 9-11 Is God
Finished With Israel, Part 1
Romans 9-11 Is God Finished With Israel,
Romans 9:1-4 The
Sorrowful Unbelief of Israel, Part 1
Romans 9:4-5 The Sorrowful Unbelief of
Israel, Part 2
Romans 9:6-13 Is Israel's Unbelief
Inconsistent with God's Plan? 1
Romans 9:14-18 Is Israel's Unbelief
Inconsistent with God's Plan? 2
Romans 9:19-24 Is
Israel's Unbelief Inconsistent with God's Plan? 3
Romans 9:25-33 Is
Israel's Unbelief Inconsistent with God's Plan? 4
Romans 9, 10 & 11 What's Ahead for
The Epistle of
Paul the Apostle to the Romans
Romans 9 Commentary
Romans 9:1-5 The Absolute Sovereignty
of God: What Is Romans Nine About
Romans 9:1-5 My Anguish: My
Kinsmen Are Accursed
Romans 9:1-5 How Great Is
the Honor of Israel
Romans 9:6-12 God's Word
Stands: Not All Israel is Israel, Part 1
Romans 9:6-12 God's Word
Stands: Not All Israel Is Israel, Part 2
Romans 9:6-13 Unconditional Election and
the Invincible Purpose of God
Romans 9:8-17 The Hardening of Pharaoh
and the Hope of the World
Romans 9:14-18 The Freedom
and Justice of God in Unconditional Election
Romans 9:14-18 The Fame of
His Name and the Freedom of Mercy
Romans 9:19-23 How God
Makes Known the Riches of His Glory
Romans 9:17 A Passion for
the Supremacy of Christ--Where He Is Not Named
Romans 9:23,24 God's
Ultimate Purpose: Vessels of Mercy
Romans 9:24-29 The Gentiles
Romans 9:30-33 The Gentiles
Have Obtained Righteousness by Faith
Romans 9:30-10:10 Believe in Your Heart
that God Raised Jesus
Romans 9:6-18 God's Freedom
Romans 9:6-18 God's Word Has Not Failed
Romans 9 Word Pictures in the
Romans 9:1-33 Jacob I Have Loved
Romans 9:1-29: Who
Romans 9:14-33 Let
God Be God
Romans 9 Greek Word Studies
Romans 9:1-8 For They Are Not All
Israel, Who Are Descended From Israel
Romans 9:9-13 Jacob I Loved, But Esau I
Romans 9:14-23 What Then Shall We Say?
Is God Unjust? Not At All!
Romans 9:24-33 I Will Call Them My
People, Who Were Not My People
Romans 9-11 - Part 3 Download
Israel's Election by God
Israel's Rejection of God
God's Ways Higher
God Not Rejecting Israel
Summary on the Attributes of God
Spurgeon on the Attributes of God
Israel of God - Is God "Finished"
with Israel in His prophetic plan?
Off Site - Table
Comparing/contrasting Israel & Church
Off Site - Does the Church Fulfill
Israel's Program? - John Walvoord
The Jewish People, Jesus Christ and World History
- S Lewis Johnson
Are you confused about God's plan for Israel?
Then I highly recommend Tony
12 Hour Course on Romans 9-11
in which he addresses in depth the question of What
Will Happen to Israel?
or see the individual lectures below)
Romans 9:1-5 Paul's Sorrow Concerning Israel
Children of the Promise
The Potter and the Clay
A Remnant Will be Saved
The Righteousness of God
Has Israel Not Heard?
God Has Not Cast Away The Jews
Life from the Dead
Two Olive Trees
The Salvation of Israel
Note that when you click the
preceding links, each link will in turn give you several choices
including an Mp3 message and brief transcript notes. The Mp3's
are long (avg 70+ min) but are in depth and thoroughly Scriptural with
many quotations from the Old Testament, which is often much less well
understood than the NT by many in the church today. Tony Garland takes a
literal approach to Scripture, and his love for the Jews and passion to
see them saved comes through very clearly in these 12 hours of teaching!
Take your home Bible Study group through this series if you dare! Take
notes on the tapes as the transcripts are a very abbreviated version of
the audio messages.
This course is highly recommended for all who love
Israel! I think you will agree that Tony Garland, despite coming to
faith after age 30 as an engineer, clearly has been given a special
anointing by God to proclaim the truth concerning Israel and God's
glorious future plan for the Jews. Garland has also produced more than
20 hours of superb audio teaching in his verse by verse commentary on
depth transcripts also available) which will unravel (in a way you did
not think was possible considering the plethora of divergent
interpretations) God's final message of the triumph and return of the
our Lord Jesus Christ as the King of kings and Lord of lords! Maranatha!
WHAT SHALL WE SAY THEN THERE IS NO INJUSTICE
WITH GOD IS THERE: Ti oun eroumen (1PFAI) me adikia para to theo:
(Ro 2:5; 3:5,6; Genesis 18:25; Deuteronomy 32:4; 2 Chronicles 19:7; Job
8:3; 34:10-12,18,19; Job 35:2; Psalms 92:15; 145:17; Jeremiah 12:1;
Revelation 15:3,4; 16:7)
anticipates a human reaction to God's choice of Jacob over Esau. Paul
anticipates men judging God and accusing God of unjust. And
yet we know from studying God's attributes (see discussion of God's
Justice), that He is always fair. He is never
unjust in His essence. So here we see where human logic comes to a
"logical" but wrong conclusion.
[word study] from a = negates what follows + dike =
right) describes the condition of not being right. Adikia
describes unrighteousness of heart and life resulting in wrongdoing. It
can describe a deed violating law and justice.
He is going to say that it is not a
matter of injustice but a matter of mercy. God sovereignly (See
Sovereignty) has mercy
(see God's attribute
who He will although all deserve His wrath (see God's attribute Wrath).
MAY IT NEVER
BE: me genoito
The idea is "Away with the
thought. Perish the thought. By no means! Certainly not!"
“Do we conclude that God is monstrously unfair? Never!”
9:15 For He
Moses, "I WILL
MERCY, AND I
For He says to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy and
I will have compassion (pity) on whom I will have compassion.(7)
ESV: For he says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I have
mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion."
ICB: God said to Moses, "I will show kindness to anyone I want
to show kindness. I will show mercy to anyone I want to show mercy."
NIV: For he says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I have
mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion."
NKJV: For He says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whomever I
will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have
NLT: For God said to Moses, "I will show mercy to anyone
I choose, and I will show compassion to anyone I choose."
Philips: God said long ago to Moses: 'I will have mercy on
whomever I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I
will have compassion'.
Wuest: For to Moses He says; I will have mercy upon whomever I
will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have
Young's Literal: for to Moses He saith, 'I will do kindness to
whom I do kindness, and I will have compassion on whom I have
FOR HE SAYS TO
MOSES I WILL HAVE MERCY ON WHOM I HAVE MERCY: o Mousei gar legei,
(1SPAI) Eleeso (1SRAI) on an eleo, (1SPAS): (Ro 9:16,18,19; Ex
33:19; 34:6,7; Isaiah 27:11; Micah 7:18)
The connection and the argument are obvious:
It is not unjust for God to exercise his sovereignty in the distribution
of his mercies, for he expressly claims the right.
Paul quotes the
of (Exodus 33:19)
Paul has already shown us that all mankind is under sin
(Romans 3:9, 10-note,
and justly deserves God's righteous wrath (Ro 1:18-note). But
God who is rich is mercy (see His attribute
Mercy) looks down and has mercy on some
and compassion on
some. He has mercy and compassion on whomever He chooses. This should
cause us to fall on our face and cry out
"Have mercy on me when I justly
What awesome truth this is.
eleos [word study]) means “to feel
sympathy with the misery of another, especially such sympathy which
manifests itself in action, less frequently in word.” It describes the
general sense of one who has compassion or person on someone in need.
Eleeo indicates that one is moved to pity and compassion by tragedy
and includes the fear that this could happen to me (although this latter
obviously does not apply to God). The idea of this verb is to see
someone in dire need (including one who may not deserve the misfortune),
to have compassion on them, and to give help to remove the need.
Specifically in context eleeo means
God extends help for the consequence of sin. He has compassion
on sinners who are in unhappy circumstances (that's stating it somewhat
Mercy implies that there is
absolutely nothing within us that caused God to bestow His mercy upon
us. It is simply according to His good pleasure. There was nothing in us
to commend us to God. We could do nothing to help ourselves (Ro 5:6-note,
Ro 5:10-note). Mercy also implies that the one bestowing the mercy has the means
to meet the need. Here God meets the need of those He chooses.
NIDNTT writes of the root
word eleos that in classical Greek...
It is “the emotion roused by contact
with an affliction which comes undeservedly on someone else” (R.
Bultmann, TDNT II 477), viz. compassion, pity, mercy. These feelings are
the reverse of envy at another’s good fortune. There is also an element
of fear that one might have to suffer in the same way. Aristotle in his
Poetics stated that tragedy aroused pity and terror and these caused
katharsis, purging. From Plutarch onwards we find the expressions eleon
echo, to find mercy, and kat' eleon, out of compassion. eleos was used
as a technical term for the end of the speech for the defence, in which
the accused tried to awaken the compassion of the judges.
Colin, Editor. New International Dictionary of NT Theology. 1986.
Vincent writes that
to succor or to show compassion...The
(root) word (eleos) emphasizes the misery with which grace deals; hence,
peculiarly the sense of human wretchedness coupled with the impulse to
relieve it, which issues in gracious ministry. Bengel remarks, “Grace
takes away the fault, mercy the misery.”
Vine writes that eleeo
signifies, in general, "to feel
sympathy with the misery of another," and especially sympathy manifested
in act, (a) in the Active Voice, "to have pity or mercy on, to show
mercy" to, e.g., Matt.
9:27; Matt. 15:22; Matt. 17:15; Matt. 18:33; Matt. 20:30, 31 (three
times in Mark, four in Luke); Rom. 9:15, 16, 18; Ro 11:32; Ro 12:8;
Phil. 2:27; Jude 1:22, 23; (b) in the Passive Voice, "to have pity or
mercy shown one, to obtain mercy," Matt. 5:7; Rom. 11:30, 31; 1Cor.
7:25; 2Cor 4:1; 1Tim. 1:13, 16; 1Pet. 2:10.
W E: Vine's Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament
Words. 1996. Nelson)
Eleeo - 29x in 26v in NAS -
Matt 5:7; 9:27; 15:22; 17:15; 18:33; 20:30, 31; Mark 5:19; 10:47, 48;
Luke 16:24; 17:13; 18:38, 39; Ro 9:15-note,
1Cor 7:25; 2Cor 4:1; Phil 2:27-note;
1Ti 1:13, 16; 1Pe 2:10-note.
NAS = found mercy(1), had mercy(4), has mercy(2), have
mercy(15), mercy(1), receive mercy(1), received mercy(3), show mercy(1),
shown mercy(3), shows mercy(1).
AND I WILL HAVE COMPASSION ON WHOM I HAVE COMPASSION: kai oiktireso
(1SFAI) on an oiktiro (1SFAI):
(oikteiro) is used only here in Scripture and means to exercise
pity or to have compassion on as one is moved or motivated by sympathy
Mercy (eleeo) expresses the
heart motivation and compassion (oikteiro) the manifestation of that
The reference in Ex 33 deals with Israel’s idolatry while Moses was on
the mount receiving the Law (Ex 32:4ff). The whole nation deserved to be
destroyed, yet God killed only 3,000 people (Ex 32:27-28) not because
they were more wicked or less godly, but purely because of His grace and
In other words, His sparing the people and continuing to guide and
protect them was purely reflective of His mercy and grace. He had the
absolute right to condemn or to save as He divinely saw fit. God’s
sovereignty and His grace not only are compatible but are inseparable.
It is equally true that he
wills to have mercy, and has already had mercy on every soul that
repents of sin and puts its trust in Jesus.—13.309
If there is one doctrine in the world which reveals the enmity of the
human heart more than an-other, it is the doctrine of God's sovereignty.
When men hear the Lord's voice saying, "I will have mercy on whom I will
have mercy," they gnash their teeth and call the preacher an
Antinomian, a High Calvinist, or some other hard name. They do not love
God except they can make him a little God. They cannot bear for him to
be supreme. They would gladly take his will away from him and set up
their own will as the first cause
Spurgeon writes in his
This means that God’s mercy and compassion cannot be subject to any
cause outside his free grace. God had mercy on the Israelites (not
destroying them for their idolatry), not because they deserved it, but
simply because he chose to be merciful.
In these words the Lord in the plainest manner claims the right to give
or to withhold his mercy according to his own sovereign will. As the
prerogative of life and death is vested in the monarch, so the Judge of
all the earth has a right to spare or condemn the guilty, as may seem
best in his sight. Men by their sins have forfeited all claim upon God;
they deserve to perish for their sins—and if they all do so, they have
no ground for complaint. If the Lord steps in to save any, he may do so
if the ends of justice are not thwarted; but if he judges it best to
leave the condemned to suffer the righteous sentence, none may arraign
him at their bar. Foolish and impudent are all those discourses about
the rights of men to be all placed on the same footing; ignorant, if not
worse, are those contentions against discriminating grace, which are but
the rebellions of proud human nature against the crown and sceptre of
Jehovah. When we are brought to see our own utter ruin and ill desert,
and the justice of the divine verdict against sin, we no longer cavil at
the truth that the Lord is not bound to save us; we do not murmur if he
chooses to save others, as though he were doing us an injury, but feel
that if he deigns to look upon us, it will be his own free act of
undeserved goodness, for which we shall for ever bless his name.
How shall those who are the subjects of divine election sufficiently
adore the grace of God? They have no room for boasting, for sovereignty
most effectually excludes it. The Lord’s will alone is glorified, and
the very notion of human merit is cast out to everlasting contempt.
There is no more humbling doctrine in Scripture than that of election,
none more promotive of gratitude, and, consequently, none more
sanctifying. Believers should not be afraid of it, but adoringly rejoice
in it. (Morning and evening : Daily readings. November 25 PM)
then it does not depend on the man
or the man who
runs, but on
So then [God's gift] is not a question of human will and human effort,
but of God's mercy. [It depends not on one's own willingness nor on
his strenuous exertion as in running a race, but on God's having mercy
ESV: So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but
on God, who has mercy.
ICB: So God will choose the one he decides to show mercy
to. And his choice does not depend on what people want or try to do.
NIV: It does not, therefore, depend on man's desire or effort,
but on God's mercy.
NKJV: So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs,
but of God who shows mercy.
NLT: So receiving God's promise is not up to us. We
can't get it by choosing it or working hard for it. God will show
mercy to anyone he chooses.
Philips: It is obviously not a question of human will or human
effort, but of divine mercy.
Wuest: Therefore, then, it [this being the recipient of God’s
mercy] is not of the one who desires nor even runs, but of the One who
is merciful, God.
Young's Literal: so, then -- not of him who is willing,
nor of him who is running, but of God who is doing kindness:
SO THEN IT DOES NOT DEPEND ON THE MAN WHO WILLS OR THE MAN WHO RUNS: ara oun ou
tou thelontos (PAPMSG) oude tou trechontos (PAPMSG):
This is a picture
of human thinking and striving as seen in John's description of those
who became children of God by faith and...
who were born not of blood, nor of
the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. (John 1:12,13)
Did you come to God because you wanted to come to God? You would not
have even wanted to unless God had placed that desire in your heart to
even want Him. So it is not because you actively willed & purposed or
resolved to come to God.
BUT ON GOD WHO HAS MERCY: alla tou
eleontos (PAPMSG) theou: (Ro 9:11; Genesis 27:1, 2, 3, 4,9, 10,
11, 12, 13, 14; Psalms 110:3; Isaiah 65:1; Matthew 11:25,26; Luke 10:21;
John 1:12,13; 3:8; 1Corinthians 1:26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31; Ephesians
2:4,5; Philippians 2:13; 2Thessalonians 2:13,14; Titus 3:3, 4, 5; James
1:18; 1Peter 2:9,10)
God Who has mercy - The
never lacks for mercy. It a continual attribute of His character
It is not man’s choice or pursuit but God who
initiates mercy for the sinner. Salvation is never initiated by human
choice or merited by zealous human effort. It always begins in God’s
sovereign, gracious, and eternal will. Those who receive God’s mercy
receive it solely by His grace.
Ishmael desired ("the man who wills") the blessing but failed to receive
it. Esau ran ("the man who runs") for the blessing, as it were, but also
failed to receive it (Ge27). Esau received a blessing from his father
but not the blessing he sought with tears, because he was ungodly and
sought the blessing without repentance or faith (Heb12:16, 17-note).
Paul writes of God's mercy
on those dead in their trespasses and sins...
But God, being rich in mercy,
because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead
in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you
have been saved), (Eph 2:4, 5-
And again in Titus God
showed mercy on those who were foolish , disobedient, deceived, enslaved
to various lusts and pleasures, spending their life in malice and envy,
hateful, hating one another, Paul recording that...
when the kindness of God our
Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis
of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His
mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy
Spirit, (Titus 3:4, 5-see notes on
Finally Peter says
Blessed be the God and Father of our
Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us
to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus
Christ from the dead, (see notes on
1 Peter 1:3)
Campbell Morgan writes that Paul...
does not mean that we are not to
will, that we are not to run. Neither does it mean that we enter into
the blessings of salvation apart from willing, apart from running. We
must will to do, and we must run well, allowing nothing to hinder. It
does most clearly mean that no willing on our part, no running of our
own, can procure for us the salvation we need, or enable us to enter
into the blessings it provides. It means more than that. Of ourselves we
shall have no will for salvation, and shall make no effort toward it.
Everything of human salvation begins in God. His will is to have mercy.
His work enables Him to do so. It is only as that will is made known to
man, that he wills to receive the mercy. It is only as that work
operates within man, that he is able to work out his salvation. Our
wills must be exercised, our running must be positive; but we enter into
salvation, and shall at last reach the crowning at the goal, only
because of the everlasting mercy of God. There is neither merit nor
cause for glorying in our choice or our effort. If God had not willed
our saving, neither should we. If God did not work within us, we should
work nothing out. Even if, of our service, we can ever say we laboured
abundantly, we shall have to add: Yet not we, but the grace of God which
was with us. (Morgan, G. C. Life Applications from Every Chapter of the
9:17 For the
VERY PURPOSE I
RAISED YOU UP,
POWER IN YOU,
AND THAT MY
NAME MIGHT BE
touto exegeira (1SAAI)
opos endeixomai (1SAMS)
the Scripture says to Pharaoh, I have raised you up for this very
purpose of displaying My power in [dealing with] you, so that My name
may be proclaimed the whole world over.
ESV: For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "For this very purpose
I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my
name might be proclaimed in all the earth."
ICB: The Scripture says to the king of Egypt: "I made you king
so I might show my power in you. In this way my name will be talked
about in all the earth."
NIV: For the Scripture says to Pharaoh: "I raised you up for
this very purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my
name might be proclaimed in all the earth."
NKJV: For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, "For this very purpose
I have raised you up, that I may show My power in you, and that My
name may be declared in all the earth."
NLT: For the Scriptures say that God told Pharaoh, "I
have appointed you for the very purpose of displaying my power in you,
and so that my fame might spread throughout the earth."
Philips: The scripture says to Pharaoh: 'Even for this
same purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you,
and that my name shall be declared in all the earth' .
Wuest: For the scripture says to Pharaoh, For this same purpose
I raised you up, in order that I may demonstrate in you my power, and
in order that there may be published everywhere my Name in all the
Young's Literal: for the Writing saith to Pharaoh -- 'For this
very thing I did raise thee up, that I might shew in thee My power,
and that My name might be declared in all the land;'
FOR THE SCRIPTURE
SAYS TO PHARAOH: legei
(3SPAI) gar e graphe to Pharao: (Romans 11:4; Galatians 3:8,22;
from grapho = to write;
English = graphite - the lead in a pencil!) means first a writing or
thing written, a document. Graphe is used in such a way that quoting
Scripture is understood to be the same as quoting God! And here
Scripture "speaking" to Pharaoh is tantamount to God speaking to
Being an absolute monarch, Pharaoh
assumed that, certainly within his own realm, everything he said and did
was by his own free choice to serve his own human purposes. But the Lord
made clear through Moses that Pharaoh was divinely raised up to serve a
divine purpose, a purpose of which the king was not even aware.
FOR THIS VERY PURPOSE I RAISED YOU UP
TO DEMONSTRATE MY POWER IN YOU: hoti eis auto touto exegeira
(1SAAI) se opos endeixomai (1SAMS) en soi ten dunamin mou:
Paul quotes the
of (Exodus 9:16)
Paul does say "for this very purpose I created you". Out
of a mass of unregenerate mankind God raises up a man who had suppressed
the truth, who refused to give God thanks and honor, exchanging His truth
for the lie and who was therefore without excuse (Ro 1:20, 21 -note).
God This is who God called forth
(almost as one would do in a play) on to the stage of world history (His
saying in essence "I will use you to demonstrate my power." It is not as
if Pharaoh had said I want to believe in You and be saved. In fact when
Pharaoh is faced with the clear demonstration of God's power and refuses
bow down, instead becoming becoming hardened. And Pharaoh is used for
God's purposes to deliver many from bondage.
from ek = out + egeíro = to raise) carries the idea of bringing forward or
lifting up and was used of the rise of historical figures to positions
The only other NT use is also by
Paul in the context of the resurrection...
1 Corinthians 6:14 Now God has not
only raised (egeiro) the Lord, but will also raise (exegeiro)
us up through His power.
Exegeiro is used
61 times in the
- Gen 28:16; 41:21; Num 10:35; 24:19; Jdg 5:12; 1 Sam 26:12; 2 Sam
12:11; 19:18; 23:18; 1 Kgs 16:3; 2 Chr 36:22; Ezra 1:1, 5; Esther 8:4;
Job 5:11; Ps 3:5; 7:6; 35:23; 44:23; 57:8; 59:4; 73:20; 78:65; 80:2;
108:2; 119:62; 139:18; Prov 25:23; Song 2:7; 3:5; 4:16; 8:4f; Isa 38:16;
41:2; 51:9, 17; 52:1; Jer 6:22; 31:26; 50:41; 51:1, 38; Ezek 21:16;
23:22; Dan 11:25; 12:2; Joel 3:7, 9, 12; Jonah 1:4, 11, 13; Hab 1:6;
2:19; 3:13; Hag 1:14; Zech 2:13; 4:1; 11:16; 13:7. Here are some
Speaking through the prophet Nathan, the Lord told David
that, because of his murder of Uriah and taking his wife, Bathsheba, for
“I will raise up
evil against you from your own household”
One of Job’s “comforters” rightly said of God that
on high those who are lowly, and those who mourn are lifted to
safety” (Job 5:11)
In much the same way that He raised up Pharaoh, the Lord
also raised up “the Chaldeans” to do His will, Habakkuk recording God's
"behold, I am raising up the
Chaldeans, that fierce and impetuous people who march throughout the
earth To seize dwelling places which are not theirs." (Hab. 1:6)
Zechariah records that one day
“raise up a shepherd [Antichrist] in
the land who will not care for the perishing, seek the scattered, heal
the broken, or sustain the one standing, but will devour the flesh of
the fat sheep and tear off their hoofs” (Zec11:16).
All of these events (and others
too numerous to mention) underline the truth that God is sovereign over
history. (See attribute
[word study] from en = in, to + deíknumi = make
known the character or significance of something by visual, auditory,
gestural, or linguistic means)
means to point out, to demonstrate, to put on display, to prove, to show
proof, to show forth, to show oneself, to give visible proof, to show in
anything and implies an appeal to facts. The preposition (in) in
the compound suggests more than the simplest demonstration. It is like
laying the index finger, as it were, on the object. It means to to show
something in someone. It can mean to do something to someone, as
Alexander the coppersmith did (endeíknumi) Paul much harm (see
In the papyri it could have a quasi-legal sense of proving a petition or
charge or of proving that a charge was wrong. Josephus used
endeíknumi to describe Herod Agrippa’s display of generosity to
those of other nations (Josephus, Antiquities, 19:330).
Endeiknumi - 11x in 11v -
Ro 2:15; 9:17, 22; 2 Cor 8:24; Eph 2:7; 1Ti 1:16; 2Ti 4:14; Titus 2:10;
3:2; Heb 6:10, 11. NAS = demonstrate(4), did(1), show(4), showing(2),
AND THAT MY NAME MIGHT BE PROCLAIMED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE EARTH: kai opos diaggele (3SAPS) to onoma mou en pase te ge:
(Exodus 10:1,2; 14:17,18; 15:14,15; 18:10,11; Joshua 2:9,10; 9:9;
1 Samuel 4:8) (John 17:26)
(diaggello from diá = through + aggéllo = to tell,
declare) means to herald thoroughly, to declare fully or far and wide
and so to declare plainly, fully and exactly.
to carry a message through, announce
everywhere, through places, through assemblies of men, etc.; to publish
Diaggello - 3x in 3v - Luke
9:60; Acts 21:26; Rom 9:17. NAS = giving notice(1), proclaim
The psalmist Asaph appeals to
God not to remain silent or still as His enemies exalt themselves
pleading with Him to...
Let them be ashamed and dismayed
forever; and let them be humiliated and perish, that they may know that
Thou Alone, Whose Name is the LORD, art the Most High over all the
earth. (Psalms 83:17,18-note)
In Isaiah King Hezekiah appeals to
the Lord (for Israel's deliverance) that His name might be proclaimed...
"And now, O LORD our God,
deliver us from his hand that all the kingdoms of the earth may know
that Thou alone, LORD, art God." (Isaiah 37:20)
Solomon writes that...
The LORD has made everything for
its own purpose, even the wicked for the day of evil. (Proverbs 16:4)
desires, and He
So then He has mercy on whomever He wills (chooses) and He hardens
(makes stubborn and unyielding the heart of) whomever He wills.
ESV: So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens
whomever he wills.
ICB: So God shows mercy where he wants to show mercy. And
he makes stubborn the people he wants to make stubborn.
NIV: Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy,
and he hardens whom he wants to harden.
NKJV: Therefore He has mercy on whom He wills, and whom He
wills He hardens.
NLT: So you see, God shows mercy to some just because he
wants to, and he chooses to make some people refuse to listen.
Philips: It seems plain, then, that God chooses on whom he will
have mercy, and whom he will harden in their sin.
Wuest: Therefore, then, upon whom He desires, He shows mercy; and
whom He desires to harden, He hardens.
Young's Literal: so, then, to whom He willeth, He doth
kindness, and to whom He willeth, He doth harden.
SO THEN HE HAS
MERCY ON WHOM HE DESIRES
(on whomever He chooses,
on whom He wants to have mercy): ara oun on thelei (3SPAI) eleei (3SPAI)
on: (Ro 9:15,16; 5:20,21; Ephesians 1:6)
Here the general conclusion is drawn
from all the Apostle had said in the three preceding verses, in denying
that God was unrighteous in loving Jacob and hating Esau. It exhibits
the ground of God's dealings both with the elect and the reprobate. It
concludes that His own sovereign pleasure is the rule both with respect
to those whom He receives, and those whom He rejects. He pardons one and
hardens another, without reference to anything but His own sovereign
will, in accordance with His infinite wisdom, holiness, and justice.
'Even so, Father,' said our blessed Lord, 'for so it seemed good in Thy
sight.' God is not chargeable with any injustice in electing some and
not others; for this is an act of mere mercy and compassion, and that
can be no violation of justice.
That mighty act of God in delivering Israel from bondage in Egypt
demonstrated two great truths. He delivered Israel to exhibit His
sovereign mercy on [those] whom He desires, and He raised up and
destroyed Pharaoh to exhibit the corollary truth that He hardens those
whom He desires. Only His divine desire determines which it will be.
Moses was a Jew, whereas Pharaoh was a Gentile; but both of them were
sinners. Both were murderers, and both witnessed God’s miracles. Yet
Moses was redeemed and Pharaoh was not. God raised up Pharaoh in order
to reveal His own glory and power, and God had mercy on Moses in order
to use him to deliver His people Israel. Pharaoh was a ruler, whereas
Moses’ people were slaves under Pharaoh. But Moses received God’s mercy
and compassion, because that was God’s will. The Lord’s work is
sovereign, and He acts entirely according to His own will to accomplish
His own purposes. The issue was not the presumed rights of either men
but rather the sovereign will of God.
AND HE HARDENS WHOM HE DESIRES: de thelei (3SPAI) sklerunei:
(Ro 1:24, 25, 26, 27, 28; 11:7,8; Exodus 4:21; 7:13; Deuteronomy 2:30;
Joshua 11:20; Isaiah 63:17; Matthew 13:14,15; Acts 28:26, 27, 28;
2Thessalonians 2:10, 11, 12)
Hardens whom He desires -
Compare with His divine judicial activity in Romans 1 where 3 times God
gives sinners over to their depraved natures (Ro 1:24-note,
We see a similar "spiritual"
judgment in the time of the antichrist's rule where Paul writes that...
And then that lawless one (the
Antichrist) will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of
His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; 9 that
is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with
all power and signs and false wonders, 10 and with all the deception of
wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love
of the truth (What does
this clearly imply? That
the truth was offered/available) so as to be saved. 11 And for this
reason (What reason?)
God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they might
believe what is false, 12 in order that they all may be judged who did
not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness (Which is why
they did not love the truth, for the truth called them to righteousness
and light and they loved unrighteousness and darkness). (2Thessalonians
from skleros = hard,
dry, hard, rough <> from skéllo =
dry up) means to make hard or stiff and is used only figuratively to
refer to the heart or mind.
In the active skleruno
means to harden and in the passive sense, to grow hard.
The NT uses are only figurative
(metaphorical) and mean to cause one to become unyielding, obstinate or
stubborn (carried on in an unyielding or persistent manner) Skleruno
was a medical technical term (first attested by Hippocrates) in Greek
writings describing something becoming hardened or thickened. Our
English word "hardening" of the arteries is known as "arteriosclerosis".
This is a serious, potentially fatal physical condition, but here in
Hebrews the danger is even more ominous, for spiritual hardening can
lead to eternal death and damnation of one's soul, not just loss of
their physical life!
From the uses of skleruno in
Exodus, one observes two important aspects of hardening: (1) Man
can repeatedly harden his heart, until finally God does the hardening,
with the implication that the latter is irrevocable. (2) One effect when
one's heart is hardened is not listening to God.
saying that God hardened Pharaoh's heart? Is Paul saying that God
purposely choose Pharaoh to be an evil man?
Pharaoh knew God and
suppressed the truth. He did not want God. He saw God's power and
hardened his heart. Yet God used him for His purposes to deliver many
The Exodus account of Moses’ confrontation with Pharaoh
speaks of God hardening Pharaoh's heart (Ex 4:21 7:3), but Moses also records that Pharaoh hardened his own heart
as in the following verse...
But when Pharaoh saw that there
was relief, he hardened his heart and did not listen to them, as
the LORD had said. (Exodus
8:15) (cf Ex 7:13; 7:22;8:32 9:7
A study of these passages in
Exodus emphasizes the tension between God’s sovereignty and man’s free
will. As already discussed, Esau although rejected by God before birth,
chose to reject his inheritance as the firstborn. Similarly, before he
was born, Judas was appointed to betray Christ, Luke recording Peter's
"Brethren, the Scripture
had to be
fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit foretold by the mouth of David
concerning Judas, who became a guide to those who arrested Jesus." (Acts1:16)
The apostle John also records God's
sovereignty in Judas' betrayal recording that...
Jesus answered them, "Did I Myself
not choose you, the twelve, and yet one of you is a devil?" Now He meant
Judas the son of Simon Iscariot, for he, one of the twelve, was going
to betray Him. (John 6:70,71).
And although clearly
appointed by God
for their place and purpose in history, both Esau and Judas, personally and willfully chose to follow sin and unbelief.
mysterious way, our human decisions for which we bear full
responsibility have also been God's decisions, and vice versa. This is
beyond our finite comprehension and we should not try to rationalize it
by some human device of reasoning. What God does is right, by definition,
"Far be it from Thee to do such a
thing (not spare Sodom and Gomorrah if there were 50 righteous in it),
to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the
wicked are treated alike. Far be it from Thee! Shall not the Judge of
all the earth deal justly?" (Ge18:25)
The psalmist echoes this truth
For the word of the LORD is upright;
and all His work is done in faithfulness. (Ps
Indeed, Jehovah's ways are "unsearchable"
(Ro11:33, cf David's declaration regarding God's knowledge and care for
him -- "Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is too high, I cannot
attain to it." Ps139:6).
We must simply bow our knee and trust
Him in whatever He does, knowing that He always right and is always
accomplishing His own eternal purposes thereby.