Morning Prayer: 31 August – Romans 10:1-4 ~ a misdirected zeal

Reading through Romans

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Opening sentence

Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ, King of endless glory. You have the words of eternal life, and we have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.

A reading from Romans: Romans 10:1-4 (NLT)


Dear brothers and sisters, the longing of my heart and my prayer to God is for the people of Israel to be saved. I know what enthusiasm they have for God, but it is misdirected zeal. For they don’t understand God’s way of making people right with himself. Refusing to accept God’s way, they cling to their own way of getting right with God by trying to keep the law. For Christ has already accomplished the purpose for which the law was given. As a result, all who believe in him are made right with God.

Reflection: Romans 10:1-4  (John Stott, The Message of Romans: God’s Good News for the World)

The plan of God for Jews and Gentiles: (Romans 9–11)

The dominant theme [of these three chapters] is Jewish unbelief, together with the problems which it raised…. Each chapter handles a different aspect of God’s relation to Israel, past, present and future:

  1. Israel’s fall (9: 1– 33): God’s purpose of election
  2. Israel’s fault (10: 1– 21): God’s dismay over her disobedience
  3. Israel’s future (11: 1– 32): God’s long-term design
  4. Doxology (11: 33– 36): God’s wisdom and generosity

Israel’s fault: God’s dismay over her disobedience (10:1–21)

(10:1-4) Israel’s ignorance of the righteousness of God

Paul has no doubt of [Israel’s] religious sincerity…. Yet Scripture says that ‘it is not good to have zeal without knowledge’. Sincerity is not enough, for we may be sincerely mistaken. The proper word for zeal without knowledge, commitment without reflection, or enthusiasm without understanding, is fanaticism.

The tragic consequence of the Jews’ ignorance was that, recognizing their need of righteousness if they were ever to stand in God’s righteous presence, they sought to establish their own, and they did not submit to God’s righteousness.

The fundamental error of those who are seeking to establish their own righteousness is that they have not understood… that Christ has abrogated the law…. The reason Christ has terminated the law is so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes. In respect of salvation, Christ and the law are incompatible alternatives….

‘Once we grasp the decisive nature of Christ’s saving work’, writes Dr Leon Morris, ‘we see the irrelevance of all legalism.’


Jesus, Lover of my soul



Christ, as a light illumine and guide me. Christ, as a shield overshadow me. Christ under me; Christ over me; Christ beside me on my left and my right. This day be within and without me, lowly and meek, yet all-powerful. Be in the heart of each to whom I speak; in the mouth of each who speaks unto me. This day be within and without me, lowly and meek, yet all-powerful. Christ as a light; Christ as a shield; Christ beside me on my left and my right.


May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Categories: Life around the World, Life in America, Life in Christ

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