He Is Always There

Brothers and sisters:
The gifts and the call of God are irrevocable.

Just as you once disobeyed God
but have now received mercy
because of their disobedience,
so they have now disobeyed in order that,
by virtue of the mercy shown to you,
they too may now receive mercy.
For God delivered all to disobedience,
that he might have mercy upon all.

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God!
How inscrutable are his judgments and how unsearchable his ways!

For who has known the mind of the Lord
or who has been his counselor?
Or who has given him anything
that he may be repaid?

For from him and through him and for him are all things.
To God be glory forever. Amen.
(Romans 11:29-36)

Scripture Study

11:29 gifts and the call of God Refers to privileges granted to Israel (9:4).

11:30–32 Israel, together with the Gentiles who have been handed over to all manner of vices (Rom 1), has been delivered … to disobedience. The conclusion of Rom 11:32 repeats the thought of Rom 5:20, “Where sin increased, grace overflowed all the more.”

11:33–36 This final reflection celebrates the wisdom of God’s plan of salvation. As Paul has indicated throughout these chapters, both Jew and Gentile, despite the religious recalcitrance of each, have received the gift of faith. The methods used by God in making this outreach to the world stagger human comprehension but are at the same time a dazzling invitation to abiding faith.

11:34 The citation is from the Greek text of Is 40:13. Paul does not explicitly mention Isaiah in this verse, nor Job in 11:35.

11:35 Paul quotes from an old Greek version of Jb 41:3a, which differs from the Hebrew text (Jb 41:11a).

Scripture Reflection

The gifts and the call of God are irrevocable” Romans 11:29

Can you imagine that even if you falter time and again, that your friend would never go back on their promises to you; they would never abandon you for something or someone else? In this very cynical and “what have you done for me lately” world, that can seem hard to imagine. But the opening verse in today’s reading from Paul’s letter to the Romans goes one better than that. God never goes back on anything he promises.

God loves us with an everlasting love. God’s calling, which is eternal, cannot cease. But we for our part can reject his call. The unchanging nature of God’s plan is reassuring to us as it means that even if we abandon him at any point, we can always return to our earlier faithfulness, and He is still there, waiting for us. What a friend we have in Him!

May the virtues of faith, hope, and love go with you today – DV.