Romans 3:1-8 Jewish Advantage

Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the value of circumcision?Much in every way. To begin with, the Jews were entrusted with the oracles of God. What if some were unfaithful? Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God? By no means! Let God be true though every one were a liar, as it is written,

“That you may be justified in your words,
    and prevail when you are judged.”

But if our unrighteousness serves to show the righteousness of God, what shall we say? That God is unrighteous to inflict wrath on us? (I speak in a human way.) By no means! For then how could God judge the world? But if through my lie God’s truth abounds to his glory, why am I still being condemned as a sinner? And why not do evil that good may come?—as some people slanderously charge us with saying. Their condemnation is just.

Jewish Advantage

Has Paul ripped apart the Jewish people in such a way that they have no advantages.  He keeps coming back to ‘first the Jew,’ but what does that mean?  Jewish people have been chosen by God.  As a Gentile, I do not have a problem with that.  I am glad to have been grafted into the people of God, even if Jewish people came first.

Jewish people have had the word of God for centuries more than Gentiles.  It is a privilege to be entrusted with something so special.  God has been faithful to them.  His faithfulness, though, can be defined as a constant focus rather than a constant bounty.  He has been faithful in delivering judgement when they have failed to institute his righteous ways.  However, he has been faithful in using Israel as the people through whom Messiah has come.  However, if God is glorified whether Jewish people serve him or whether they rebel, what difference does obedience make? This would show a heart of self-interest rather than God-focus.  Such people in Israel or wherever they are found are justly condemned.

Prayer

Father, may you continue to work in your people the Jews.  May your name be glorified by your faithfulness to them.  May they be inspired to jealousy because of how you use Gentiles.  may they be roused to action.

Questions

  1. What advantages are there in being Jewish?
  2. How would you describe the faithfulness of God if God allows Jewish people to suffer so much?
  3. Are there advantages in being Jewish today?
  4. How have you told someone Jewish of their high position?
  5. What might encourage a Jewish person to follow Jesus?
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About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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13 Responses to Romans 3:1-8 Jewish Advantage

  1. Maelynn says:

    I like the phrase in verse three, “Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God?” This gives me hope and should give Jewish people hope as well. God’s faithfulness is not based on our own faithfulness. Truly, we can do nothing to save ourselves!

  2. Andrew Moore says:

    I think it’s amazing how God has been so faithful to the Jewish people, even to the modern age. Just in the way that they have become a sovereign state again is incredible to me, and a wonderful testimony of God’s promises. Although the Jewish people still face incredible challenges, the Lord’s promises will always be with them.

  3. Megumi says:

    1. The Jewish people were first given the Word of God
    3. They still already have some knowledge of the promises of God
    4. I don’t know that I have…
    5. Realizing Jesus is the fulfillment to God’s promises.

  4. Michael McCardle says:

    What advantages are there in being Jewish?
    They were given the word of God first and they were chosen
    How would you describe the faithfulness of God if God allows Jewish people to suffer so much?
    God has always been faithful, but Israel has chosen to turn away form the Lord.
    Are there advantages in being Jewish today?
    I think it is extremely rough to be a Jew
    How have you told someone Jewish of their high position?
    I haven’t but my roommate is a Jewish studies major and he does all the time and it is so awesome
    What might encourage a Jewish person to follow Jesus?
    Walking them through the Bible and explaining how much God loves them

  5. Emmy R says:

    While reading this, I was reminded of Luke 12:48 and the well known phrase that says to whom much is given, much is expected. This is what I am reminded of when I think of the Jews. They are a special people chosen by God, but there is also a level of obedience that comes with that calling.

  6. Maria T. says:

    The advantages in being a Jew were because they were given the “oracles of God.” God worked directly with the nation of Israel, to their advantage. God has chosen them, and so there is still an advantage in belonging to God’s chosen people.

  7. 1. The Jews were given God’s word first and were the chosen people of God.
    2. God remained faithful although the Jews suffered because they chose to turn away from Him.
    3. Today, Jewish people do still have knowledge of God through their faith in the OT.
    4. I don’t think I have ever told a Jewish person that.
    5. Realizing that Jesus is the fulfillment of the law would encourage a Jew to become Christian.

  8. Kimberly W. says:

    How would you describe the faithfulness of God if God allows Jewish people to suffer so much?

    This is a difficult question and one I have thought about frequently this semester. I know that God is faithful, but I don’t always understand His faithfulness and how He demonstrates it. I am in a class about the Holocaust, and this is one of my underlying questions throughout the class.

    Despite all the tragedies that have happened to the Jewish people, God has never let them be destroyed. His faithfulness is demonstrated in His preserving His chosen people. His faithfulness is affirmed in returning the Jews to their land and in the creation of the state of Israel. I know God is faithful, somehow, even when we cannot see it.

    It’s not a complete answer. I’m still wrestling with it.

  9. Christina W. says:

    “His faithfulness, though, can be defined as a constant focus rather than a constant bounty.” I had never really thought about it in this way. God has been faithful to Israel whether it has been in judgment or in blessing.

  10. Christa says:

    1. What advantages are there in being Jewish? The Jewish people were entrusted with the Old Testament and were given the good news of Christ first.
    2. How would you describe the faithfulness of God if God allows Jewish people to suffer so much? The Lord is still faithful to the Jewish people when they suffer because he desires that they would turn to him.
    3. Are there advantages in being Jewish today? The Jewish people today still have the benefit of being of the cultural heritage of Christ and have the promises of land and other things that were made to them by God in the OT.
    4. How have you told someone Jewish of their high position? I don’t think that I have..
    5. What might encourage a Jewish person to follow Jesus? The truth of the gospel spoken to them in a loving manner and the work of the Holy Spirit within them

  11. 1. They are God’s chosen people and it is through them that God blesses the world. They were given the Scriptures first.
    2. He has always preserved a portion of His people and always will. His faithfulness is intense and in accordance with His will for Israel. He will never allow them to be entirely lost.
    3. They have a rich heritage based in the Scriptures and they also have the promise of land and descendants that God promised to Abraham. They are also a blessing to the rest of the world since Christ came through them whether or not they recognize it.
    4. I have not had that opportunity.
    5. The Holy Spirit is the only one who can prepare a soul for salvation. I think often in the stories I have heard from Jewish friends who were saved, they came to faith when they realized how Christ perfectly fulfilled the Scriptures.

  12. Jung Kim says:

    God is a faithful God. We hear this phrase million times in church setting today. I stopped and thought about the meaning behind God’s faithfulness. When I think of the word, I think of consistence. Also, I think of God who is always near me and watch over me. Up to this life, there has never been a moment that God was absent. He is present even at this very moment when I am meditating on Him. Praise God for His faithfulness and His great work in our lives! 😀 May God continue to reveal Himself and His faithfulness to those who don’t know Him yet.

  13. Nate Silvieus says:

    We are thankful for the Jewish people, and are thankful for God’s ever present faithfulness to them. The fact that they are God’s first chosen should spur us on so much more to pray for them as they are people group so distant from Him and the Messiah.

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