Today in God’s Word
1 Samuel 2; Romans 2; Jeremiah 40; Psalm 15-16
Today in Romans chapter two Paul levels the field and explains that the Gentiles and the Jews are all guilty and incur the wrath of God by failure to repent, failure to seek his glory and his honor and life in communion with him. He makes the case that real covenant membership in God’s family is not by physical circumcision but it is by a circumcision of the heart and that a true Jew has a circumcised heart.
He makes direct reference to the uncircumcised becoming circumcised without circumcision and so it is clear that the Gentile can become a Jew from the heart and thus be part of the covenant family of God while a circumcised Jew might be false and actually not a child of God at all. The true child of God hates his sin and loves the law of God. This chapter is really a preaching of the Sermon on the Mount about heart level righteousness that is based on an obedience of faith.
So here we see Jeremiah 31:31-33 and Deuteronomy 30:6 played out:
“31 “Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the Lord. 33 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” (Jeremiah 31:31–33, ESV)
“6 And the Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.” (Deuteronomy 30:6, ESV)
The New Covenant belongs to Israel and yet Gentiles can benefit and partake of this promise as they are grafted into the family of God by faith (cf. Romans 11; Gal 2:7-9; Eph 3:6; Rom 4:11)! Indeed if Abraham is not my father, I shall not be saved. Paul warns of arrogance toward the Jews in Romans 11 and encourages loving respect for the whole family of God and a realization that it is their promises that we are partaking in and not our own.
So righteousness is more than a written law or a physical heritage…salvation is more than a written law or a physical heritage…both are a work of God by his Spirit within the heart of each man.
“10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.” (Romans 10:10, ESV)
Soli Deo Gloria!