The Epistle of ROMANS
*** It is important to note that Romans Chapters 9, 10 and 11 are a parenthetical statement (i.e. they are in parenthesis which is a figure of speech indicating an EXPLANATION.)
1. Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.
2. For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.
Literal: New English Translation -- To their zeal for God I can testify: but it is an ill-informed zeal.
This is the Figure of Speech TAPEINOSIS (or demeaning) which is "a lessening of a thing in order to increase it." The expression "not according to knowledge" really means "with great blindness". So the second part of the verse should be stated with a clearer understanding that Israel had a great zeal for God but went about it with great blindness. They also did this when it came to righteousness by trying to achieve it by works and not by believing. They had the zeal and enthusiasm but went about it the wrong way -- with great blindness.
3. For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
This verse talks about the subject of righteousness and how they tried to establish their own righteousness by works. They were trying to establish their own righteousness by the law which we are to no longer adhere to according to what the Word of God teaches.
Galatians 3: 23, 24, 25 -- But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto [until] Christ, that we might be justified by faith [the faith of Jesus Christ].
4. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.
Literal: For Christ is the end of the law and he made righteousness available to everyone who believes.
5. For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.
Literal: New English Translation -- The man who does this shall gain life by it.
6. But the righteousness which is of faith ['PISTIS' in Greek which means 'BELIEVING] speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)
Literal: But the righteousness which is of believing says, Do not say to yourself, "Who can go up to heaven?" (that is to bring Christ down from above:)
7. Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)
Literal: Or, who shall descend into the deep or the abyss? (to bring up Christ again from the dead.)
8. But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith [believing], which we preach;
Literal: But what does it say? 'The Word is near you: it is upon your lips and in your heart. That is, the Word of faith (believing) which we preach is near you.
9. That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Literal: That if thou shalt confess (say it) with thy mouth the Lord Jesus Christ (as Lord in their life) and shalt believe in thine heart (the innermost part of your being) that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved (sozo - made whole).
10. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Literal: For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness and salvation and with the heart and the mouth confession is made unto righteousness and salvation.
11. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
Literal: For the Scripture saith -- Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed (disappointed in his expectation).
Isaiah 28:16b -- . . . . . . . "he that believeth shall not make haste" [get away for fear of; be anxious or uneasy due to embarrassment or shame].
Another backup verse that you should have remembered from your studies is back in Romans, Chapter Nine (9).
Romans 9: 33 -- As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
12. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.
Here we see that the Church is being 'called out' from both Gentiles and Jews. "For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek (Gentile) because the same Lord is Lord over all and is rich enough to take care of all of the needs of everyone who calls upon Him." God's richness and wealth is limitless and He wants to share it with you. Focus your mind, stay clear and concerned and never let your guard down. Continue to follow your heart keeping God first and you will see results. Don't faint in your mind and give up when the enemy throws a dart at you. This is normal behavior for him. If you stay in fellowship, you can dodge all those darts. Remember, what you confess is what you possess and also don't ever forget that there is great peace in silence. Doing all of this allows you to tap into that richness and wealth that God, your Father, has and He wants to give to you.
13. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
14. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
15. And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
Literal: And how shall they preach except they be sent or commissioned? As it is written "How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!"
16. But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?
Literal: But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our preaching?
17. So then faith [the faith of Jesus Christ] cometh by hearing, and hearing [cometh] by the word of God.
Literal: So then faith (the believing of Jesus Christ) comes by hearing the Word of God and hearing also comes by the Word of God.
Faith or believing comes from no other source than the Word of God. This also applies to the natural man so that he can hear and become born again if, by his own free will, he desires to do so. This faith is the faith of Jesus Christ. When the man of body and soul hears the Word of God and believes, he receives this faith. He cannot receive any more faith -- now, he must simply believe and act ON God's Word.
18. But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.
Literal: But I say, can it be that they never heard it? Yes, truly, or of course they did. Into all the earth went out their voice and to ends of the habitable world went their words.
19. But I say, Did not Israel know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you.
Literal: But I ask again, can it be that Israel failed to recognize the message? In reply, I first cite Moses who says: I will provoke you to jealousy through those not a nation, through a nation without understanding, I will anger you.
20. But Esaias is very bold, and saith, I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me.
Literal: But Isaiah is still more daring and says: I was found, he says, by those who were not looking for me; I was clearly shown to those who never asked about me.
21. But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.
Literal: But to Israel he says: All day long I have stretched out my hands to a disobedient and gainsaying (contradicting) people -- unruly and defiant.
Isaiah 65: 1, 2 -- I am sought of them that asked not for me; I am found of them that sought me not: I said, Behold me, behold me, unto a nation that was not called by my name. I have spread out my hands all the day unto a rebellious people, which walketh in a way that was not good, after their own thoughts;
The rest of the chapter goes on to explain more of the characteristics of these people. You should begin to understand that Israel rejected Christ and it was the Gentiles who accepted Christ by believing and not by works. Many of the Israelites were disobedient and defiant. God made salvation available to all believers and still does today because He is not a respecter of persons, but of conditions only. He gives man the free will choice to believe His Word or not to believe. The latter is the way of death -- the former is the WAY OF LIFE. Which do you choose?
Romans 8: 6 -- For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.