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Romans 9:23-24


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Heavenly Father,


I'm walking in circles with the burden on my heart to do another Romans study, and yet my feet keep wanting to take me to mindless, empty chores.


2 minutes ago, I had told myself, "oooops, it's too late to do a study today...you're behind schedule again...the animals need tending and you have a ton of work to do today".


Here I am, typing out this prayer, knowing I need to do this first.


May Your perfect will be accomplished, and I pray that the things You would have me, and us, learn from today's Word, penetrate our hearts and minds forever.


For the record, I've been a little jumpy while doing these last few verses...they propel me back to remembering that You truly are GOD...You're holy and everything I'm not, outside of Jesus. I can't say I'm afraid, but I can say it makes me want to shut my mouth and just be quiet...like, 'what can I say that has any import, to that?'.


I do love You though, although I feel a little shy with You these past few days.


Do with that what You will. I trust You.


In Jesus Name I pray,



23. And that He might make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He afore prepared unto glory,


24. Even us, whom He also called, not from the Jews only, but also from the Gentiles?


Watchman Nee comments in the 23rd verse, on the word "glory" and writes: "This is the glory in the manifestation of the coming kingdom, in which we, the revealed sons of God, will participate (8:17-23)."


The rvbv writes, "We are just as silent as before, though in boundless, endless gratitude: for apart from mercy, we too had become "vessels of wrath." As Paul says in verse 29: Except the Lord had dealt in mercy with us, we also "had become as Sodom!"


Note carefully that while it is God's wrath and power that are to be made known in the "vessels of wrath"; and though the glory of God would be thus in His justice exhibited, He yet does not use the word 'glory' in connection with the damnation of the wicked. In Exodus 15:11 Moses and the children of Israel do indeed celebrate the overthrow of Pharaoh, as setting forth God's prase, saying,


"Who is like unto thee, O Jehovah, among the gods?

Who is like thee, glorious in holiness,

Fearful in praises, doing wonders?"


Yet we must ever remember that God is love, from past eternity, and now, and forever. So that it is written: "He delighteth in mercy" - lovingkindness: (Micah 7:18); and, "As I live, saith Jehovah, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live" (Ezek. 33:11). God will not exult over the lost! witness Christ weeping over Jerusalem, and sorrowing over Judas (John 13:21); and the "lamentation" even over the fall of Lucifer (figured in the King of Tyre, in the remarkable passage of Ezekiel 28:11ff.).


But when God speaks in verse 23 of the vessels of mercy, it is at once said that He afore prepared them unto glory, that is, for entering into His own glory (Romans 5:2), and that they will be the means of making known through eternity to come the riches of His glory. So He speaks in Ephesians 2:4-7 of His being "rich in mercy." If it is true of us that where our treasure in our hearts will be; it is infinitely more true of God! God's treasured riches are mercy and grace. Judgment, the execution of wrath, He calls His "strange work," His "strange act" (Isa. 28:21). Mercy is the work dear to His heart!


Mark well this word "afore". For the whole process of our salvation is viewed from that blessed future day when we shall enter, through Divine mercy, into that glory unto which God "afore" appointed us, and for which He "afore" prepared us, in the work of Christ for us, and the application to us of that work, by the blessed Holy Spirit. All was "afore" arranged by God!


Verse 24: Evan us, whom He also called, not from the Jews only, but also from the Gentiles. How constant, in Paul's consciousness, the owing all to God's sovereign grace. "Prepared unto glory" (Hodge's remarks here are excellent: "The passive participle may be taken as a verbal adjective, fit for destruction. Of the vessels of wrath, it is simply said that they are fit for destruction; but of the vessels of mercy, that God prepares them for glory. Why this change if the apostle did not intend to intimate that the agency of God is very differen tin the one case from what it is in the other? God does not create men in order to destroy them. God did not make Pharaoh wicked and obdurate; but as a punishment for his sin, he so dealt with him that the evil of his nature revealed itself in a form, and under circumstances, which made him a fit object of the punitive justice of God.") - in past eternity, in sovereign election, and having a calling befitting that "preparing". Surely no one can miss, in this apostle, the supreme consciousness that he is God's, - not by his choice, but God's own choice, - an eternally settled thing, uncaused by Paul! All believers will have the same consciousness, when they find, (as Paul found), along with their Divine election, that this is in them, in their flesh, "no good thing"!


Now, the apostle, having declared that these "vessels of mercy" were "called," both from Jews and Gentiles, adduces several plain Scriptures (which the gainsaying Jews should have laid to heart)."



Heavenly Father,


Well, I guess this was one of the reasons I find myself doing today's study...it has settled my heart and the things that I talked about in the opening prayer, are filling with peace as my understanding grows.


You truly are rich in mercy and grace. Far beyond any 'just dues', will always be Your will desiring to be rich in mercy and grace.


I feel better Father God. Thank You so much for helping me through this. I can't even say that I was bound and determined to figure it out one way or the other...I can say that I found myself shrinking back, feeling shy, not understanding.


But, because You are Who You are, You would not let that happen. You will be faithful to help me understand exactly Who you really are, and You won't settle for less.


It feels good to know You always have my back. I love You so much.


In Jesus Name I pray,

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