Romans 11.17-24 – Papa is kind but not codependent

(17) To take the tree analogy a little farther, you could say that the root of Israel’s tree is healthy, but some of the branches have broken off.  You Illegals are branches from other trees, grafted onto the broken places, and you now receive life-giving sap from Israel’s root. (18) It is obvious that the grafted-in branches have no right to think they are better than the broken-off branches. Because it’s the root that supports you, not the other way around. (19) If you wanted to continue being smug, you might say the branches were broken off for the express …

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Romans 11.7-16 – Broken, but fixable

(7) In being chosen for this duty, you and I have gotten what Israel always wanted, what Israel could never bring itself to accept: (8) “Papa gave them the spark of life, but they chose deadness.  Papa gave them eyes, but they refused to see.  Papa gave them ears, but they refused to hear. And they still do.” (9) David spoke of this: “Their home will be their prison. Their eyes will be their blindness. Their backbone will be their spinelessness.” (11) Have their bad choices broken them beyond repair?  NO!  Rather, Papa has used the bad choices of Citizens …

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Rom 10.16-21 – Citizens jealous of Illegals

(16) Not all Citizens believe Jesus’ message. We share in Isaiah’s frustration:  “Master, who has believed our message?”  (17) The message provokes belief from those who hear it, and even the hearing itself is a work the Master has already accomplished for us. (18) So I wonder about the people who have not believed: Did they not hear?  But then I remember that of course they did:  “The message has gone global! Everywhere you go, there it is.”  (19) So they HEARD it, but did they maybe not UNDERSTAND it?  Moses answers that question:  “You Citizens will be envious of …

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WHO-ology?

Go to any evangelical seminary and sign up for the Hermeneutics class, and you will probably be taught that studying the Bible has to do with determining the author’s message to his original audience, and then applying that message to your life today. This is fine as far as it goes, but there’s something missing.  It implies that the object of our study is the author’s mind.  That when we have the author’s thoughts, we have the primary data required for our theological endeavor.  This is entirely appropriate if we are engaging in Paul-ology, John-ism, or Peter-onomy.  But it is …

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Romans 10.12-15 – What Citizenship is for

Papa makes no distinction between Citizens and Illegals, because ALL live under the rule of one Master.  And all who want Him receive Him: “He gives wholeness to everyone who asks it of Him.” (14) THIS is where the role of “Citizen” becomes relevant.  Because: Illegals won’t put their lives into the hands of Someone they don’t trust. They won’t trust Someone they’ve never heard of. They won’t hear about Him unless someone tells them. (15) No one will tell them without being sent to tell them. That is what Citizens are for–Carrying the good news of Citizenship for all!  …

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Romans 10.1-11 – Relax into Reality

If your lips agree with Papa’s lips, speaking the truth that Jesus is in charge of everything, and when your core beliefs are re-arranged around the fact that Papa has raised Jesus from the dead–you will be made whole, safe from the lies that imprison the whole world. To believe the truth is to open yourself to what Jesus has given you–a new, RIGHT relationship with all things. To speak the truth is to receive healing into your soul.

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Romans 9.30-33 – Illegal Immigrants

Illegal immigrants are living the Good Life that was supposed to be for law-abiding citizens. Did they have to work for this? No! Their lives are good simply because they believe the truth about Papa and about themselves. (31) Meanwhile, law-abiding citizens have been working their fingers to the bone, trying to obey the rules, but they have not found the Good Life that Torah wanted for them.

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Roman 9.27-29 – Some will survive

Remember what the prophet Isaiah said: Israel will have as many children as the beach has sand, but only a few of them will survive (28) the cataclysmic sorting-out that is coming.” and: We will not go extinct like Sodom and Gomorrah did, for Papa will see to it that some of us survive.”

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Romans 9.14-26 – Papa adopts whoever she wants to

(14) In Papa’s mission to bless the world, she chooses different people for different roles in that mission.  Does that mean Papa is unfair? Of course not! (15) Remember what she told Moses: “I will shower my kindness on whomever I want to.” (16) It’s not about how skilled we are at jumping through hoops.  It’s all about Papa, the One who shows kindness.  (17) Remember what she said to Pharaoh: “I have prepared you to be one through whom my power will be displayed, so that the whole world will know me.” (18) Papa has free reign in the …

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Rom 9.1-13 – It’s not about DNA. It’s about a relationship of trust.

(9.1) Here is the truth about me—sharpened in Jesus and confirmed by Sarayu: (2) I live in constant, aching grief for my people. (3) If it would cause them to know Jesus, I would happily give up MY relationship with him. (4) They are Israel—“They Who Grapple With God.”  In their wrestling Papa has given them: Adoption as Papa’s children The shining gaze of Papa’s face Papa’s covenants with humanity Torah from Papa’s own finger The way into Papa’s presence The promises of Papa (5) Their DNA comes from Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  From their DNA comes the Messiah, the …

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