Above My Pay Grade (Romans 9)

25 As indeed he says in Hosea,

“Those who were not my people I will call ‘my people,’
    and her who was not beloved I will call ‘beloved.’”
26 “And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’
    there they will be called ‘sons of the living Go  Romans 9:25-26

Through the years I have often found myself in moments when it was hard to understand what was the answer to a tough question.  Always I have sought others opinions to what the answer would be.  Sometimes people would respond by saying, “I don’t know.  That is above my pay grade.”  Such an answer was suggesting, this is beyond my ability to understand.

When I read Romans 9, I think, “This is above my pay grade.”  For example, this is what R.C. Sproul wrote in his footnotes to this chapter:

“The divine choice is an expression of free and sovereign grace.  It is not merited by anything in those who are chosen. God owes sinners no mercy of any kind, only condemnation; so it is a wonder that He should choose to save any of us.” Cited from Pg. 1630 “The Reformation Study Bible.”

Question, “Is this above your pay grade?”

Here is what I know:

Paul has just finished teaching us about the wonder of God’s love for us (8:31-38).  Paul’s heart is breaking for those of his own nationality who have and continue to reject the love of Christ (9:1-5).  Paul reminds us that it is not God’s fault that men reject Jesus (9:6). The fact is, God’s Word always does it work in men’s hearts.  The true believer responds in faith (9:7-10).

Paul gives examples of God’s sovereign grace in saving people (9:9-12).  Jacob responded in faith so God showered him with love.  Esau rejected God so the wrath of God was poured out.  This is God’s perfect and justifiable hatred of sin.

Here is what I do not know:

I do not know who will respond to Jesus and who will reject Jesus.  I do not know why He decided to extend mercy to me, because I would still be lost had He not opened my eyes to my need, (9:14-29).

I do not know everything God does.  But I trust what He does.

Here is what I will do:

I will share the gospel with all people praying that each says, “yes to Jesus.”  (9:30-33).  All who come to Jesus are loved by God (John 3:16).  All who come to Jesus are never rejected (John 6:34-36).  All who come to Jesus are secure for eternity (John 10:27-30).  All who come to Jesus want others to come to Jesus (Romans 9:1-3).

Yes, it is true, “somethings are above our pay grade.”  But it is also true, “something are in our pay grade.”  The sowing of the seeds of the gospel is my business and yours.  So it’s time to move from Romans 9 to Romans 10 where you and I can pick up our seed.

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