The Berean Expositor
Volume 52 - Page 203 of 207
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in the Acts period and explains Israel's tragic failure, because they sought to justify
themselves by their own efforts and not by the way of faith in Christ.  It seems
unbelievable that a people chosen by the Lord and instructed by Him through the O.T.
centuries by type and shadow, pointing forward to their Messiah, King and Saviour,
should end in this way. They thus brought spiritual blindness, deafness, and hardness of
heart upon themselves from which they as a nation are still suffering today. How
wonderful to know that this is not the end of the story, for this very section of Romans
looks to the future when at last they will believe and be saved and thus become the
channel of God's blessing to the whole earth. But this will be by the way of faith, not
works, which they refused when the preaching of the gospel of grace was carried out in
the Acts period.
Chapter 10:  opens with the Apostle Paul's concern for his nation which he has
expressed before:
"Brothers, my heart's desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be
saved. For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not
based on knowledge.
Since they did not know the righteousness that comes from God and sought to
establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness. Christ is the end of the
law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes" (Rom. 10: 1-4,
Many people today are like Israel described here, keen and active, but this is not the
same as being ruled by the truth of God. How often we hear about a certain Christian,
"but he is so zealous and sincere", forgetting that it is possible to be zealous in the wrong
"There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of
death" (Prov. 14: 12).
Neither zeal or sincerity is enough in God's sight. This is where Israel stumbled and
fell so badly. They had never learned the lesson that Paul the Pharisee had, namely, that
Christ put an end to the law as a means of acquiring favour with God. "Christ is the end
of the law" (verse 4). Telos, `end' can mean either goal or termination. The Lord Jesus
provides the very righteousness which God demands, making all human attempts to
produce it superfluous and useless.  The two ways of law and faith are illustrated by
two quotations from the Pentateuch. The first one is from Lev. 18: 5 "Ye shall
therefore keep my statutes and my judgments; which if a man do, he shall live in them".
But it must be said straight away that these words do not teach that a man could obtain
eternal life by his efforts to keep the law. The blessing on those who kept God's
commandments resulted in prolong life and enjoyment in the land of promise. They
would live long in the land "which the Lord thy God giveth thee" (Exod. 20: 12).
The way of faith is illustrated by a quotation from Moses' farewell to Israel recorded
in Deut. 30: 11-14:
"For this commandment which I command thee this day, it is not hidden from thee,
neither is it far off. It is not in heaven, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go up for us to