Skip to comments.Is the Church Called “Israel” in Romans 9:6?
Posted on 05/16/2012 3:48:19 PM PDT by wmfights
Romans 9:6 is a passage sometimes used by supersessionists to show that the church is explicitly called Israel. This verse reads, But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel. Some see in the first mention of Israel a concept of Israel that goes beyond ethnic boundaries. Thus, Paul is allegedly making a distinction between ethnic Israel and a spiritual Israelthat consists of all believers including Gentiles. This is the view of Ridderbos: Even the distinction Paul makes within national Jerusalem between who is and who is not a Jew, between Israel and those who are of Israel (Rom. 2:28ff.; 9:6), tends to a usage that denotes the believing gentiles as well and therefore the Christian church as such as Israel. In reference to Rom 9:68 Wayne Grudem declares, Paul here implies that the true children of Abraham, those who are in the most true sense Israel, are not the nation of Israel by physical descent from Abraham but those who have believed in Christ. In his comments on Rom 9:6, Robertson states, It is those who, in addition to being related to Abraham by natural descendency, also relate to him by faith, plus those Gentiles who are ingrafted by faith, that constitute the true Israel of God.
This verse, though, is not a supporting text for supersessionism as most commentators on Romans 9:6 acknowledge. As Murray has noted, Rom 9:6 is teaching that there is an Israel within ethnic Israel. Paul is not saying that believing Gentiles are now part of Israel. Instead, believing Jews are the true Israel. William Sanday and Arthur C. Headlam make this point:
But St. Paul does not mean here to distinguish a spiritual Israel (i.e. the Christian Church) from the fleshly Israel, but to state that the promises made to Israel might be fulfilled even if some of his descendants were shut out from them. What he states is that not all the physical descendants of Jacob are necessarily inheritors of the Divine promises implied in the sacred name Israel.
Thus, the true Israelite is one who is a Jew ethnically and one has believed in Jesus Christ (see Romans 2:2829). Romans 9:6, therefore, is not a supporting text for Replacement Theology.
 Those who view Rom 9:6 as including believing Gentiles in the concept of Israel include: Ridderbos, Paul, 336, n. 30; Grudem, Systematic Theology, 861; C. H. Dodd, The Epistle of Paul to the Romans(London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1932), 155; Goppelt, Typos, 140; Ellis, Pauls Use of the Old Testament, 137; and James D. G. Dunn, Romans 916, WBC, vol. 38b (Dallas: Word, 1988), 540; LaRondelle, The Israel of God in Prophecy, 121; Bright, The Kingdom of God, 22627. Commenting on Rom 9:6, Origen stated, For if the judgment respecting the Jew inwardly be adopted, we must understand that, as there is a bodily race of Jews, so also is there a race of Jews inwardly. Origen, First Principles 4.21, ANF 4:370.
 Ridderbos, Paul, 336, n. 30.
 Grudem, Systematic Theology, 861.
 O. Palmer Robertson, The Christ of the Covenants (Phillipsburg, N.J.: P & R, 1980), 40.
 Murray, The Epistle to the Romans, 2:9.
 William Sanday and Arthur C. Headlam, The Epistle to the Romans, ICC (New York: Charles Scribners Sons, 1923), 240. See also Douglas Moo, The Epistle to the Romans, NICNT (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1996), 574. About Rom 9:6, Gutbrod writes, We are not told here that Gentile Christians are the true Israel. The distinction at R. 9:6 does not go beyond what is presupposed at Jn. 1:47. . . . Walter Gutbrod, Israhl, k. t. l., in Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, vol. 3, ed. Gerhard Kittel (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1965), 387.
When the passage is taken in context, it states:
But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel; 7nor are they all children because they are Abrahams descendants, but: THROUGH ISAAC YOUR DESCENDANTS WILL BE NAMED. 8That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants. 9For this is the word of promise: AT THIS TIME I WILL COME, AND SARAH SHALL HAVE A SON. (Romans 9:6-9)
It has nothing to do with Gentile believers or the Church because Gentile believers and the Church are not the "children of promise". That title belongs to the descendants of Abraham and Isaac. The true Israel is the assembly of Jewish believers.
You just cited this, but failed to get it. "They that are children of the flesh, these are NOT the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed."
"Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ." (Galatians 3:16)
"For ye are all children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male or female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ's, the are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise". (Galatians 3:26-29).
See also Galatians 4:22-31.
Should I just go ahead and send the Religion Moderator an Aryan Brotherhood alert?
It's an epistle to the saints at Rome. They are gentiles.
Where does God refer to Gentile believers as “the children of promise”?
yes, you should.
Only if you can repost where I ever said to kill the Jews.
"Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise. But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now. Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son: for the son of the bondwoman shall not be heir with the son of the freewoman. So then, brethren, we are not children of the bondwoman, but of the free." (Galatians 4:29-31)
This epistle was written to gentile saints in Galatia.
Israel is Israel. It is not the church. It is most certainly not the Catholic Church. It is most certainly not the Black church.
Israel is Israel. We are done here.
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