11 I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. 12 Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness? 13 For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office: 14 If by any means I may provoke to emulation them which are my flesh, and might save some of them.
Paul's perception of his role in the Gospel is visible in this text. Three group are visible, Israel, Gentiles and the world. All started in the same place, separated from God. Each competitors goal was the return to God. Returning or being accepted by God is the highest of all reward. Each had a different strategy. Israel was provided the best coaching available, God himself. They were given the best equipment and proper training. They received the best players. Israel was the dream team, who had every element need to win the game.
The gentile team had players but no coach. They learned to play on the field of life. They knew they were far from God. They were without hope. This motley crew was rarely mentioned in the Hebrew bible accept when they were being defeated or used as a sparing partner with Israel. Sometimes it looked as if they were going to win but in the end God's dream team always came out on top. They were the underdogs, though they outnumbered Israel they were no match for God's coaching strategy.
1 Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved. 2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge. 3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
What happened to the dream team?
Somewhere they lost focus on the purpose. They took there eye off of the prize.. returning to God.
Paul said his desire is that they be saved. Were they not on Gods team? Yes, they were hand picked by God and they new it.
They had a zeal for for God. They were excited about him.. They were proud that they wer on the team.. but somehow being on the team became enough for them.. no need to read the playbook, or even know the plays.. they were suppose to win, God was there Coach.
Though they knew God, they were ignorant of the type of relationship he was calling them to. Submission to the law or rules would only help them beat their opponent but only the right relationship will get them to their goal- return to God.
1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.
The world is watching.
What is the purpose of a spirited competition? In the struggle there are winners and losers. But is it about them?
Players they are not the reason that they compete, they are not the reason the team exist.
Competition is for those that are watching? We cast off the weights of training to do our best for the pleasure of those that are watching. If we fail we feel we have let them down, we have not performed the way they expected.
2 And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.
1 Thou therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. 2 And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also. 3 Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 4 No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.
Healthy competitions teaches those that watch. Teaches what we have heard, what we communicate to those that faithfully struggle with us to those that see us and are with us as we compete.
Healthy competition is the evidence of out commitment we have to the one that calls us.
5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; And lean not unto thine own understanding.
5 Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; And lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, And he shall direct thy paths.
Trust the Lord is an issue of heart.
with the heart man believes..
What is in the heart will come from our conversation-way of life expressed in words and deeds.
33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Matter of priority.
Most people don't recognize the call of God for their life.
The call for you
-is one for all you are
-for all you possess
The God that cares for you
That takes care of you
That watches over you
Cares for your things too
About your marriage
Cares about your family
About your career
About your health
To trust God is to walk and live in that confidence.
You can fully commit to the will of God and rest upon his power to provide.
Are you ready to reach the goal?