New International Version

Romans 9:1-33

Paul’s Anguish Over Israel

1I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying, my conscience confirms it through the Holy Spirit— 2I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. 3For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people, those of my own race, 4the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption to sonship; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. 5Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised!9:5 Or Messiah, who is over all. God be forever praised! Or Messiah. God who is over all be forever praised! Amen.

God’s Sovereign Choice

6It is not as though God’s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. 7Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children. On the contrary, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.”9:7 Gen. 21:12 8In other words, it is not the children by physical descent who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring. 9For this was how the promise was stated: “At the appointed time I will return, and Sarah will have a son.”9:9 Gen. 18:10,14

10Not only that, but Rebekah’s children were conceived at the same time by our father Isaac. 11Yet, before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad—in order that God’s purpose in election might stand: 12not by works but by him who calls—she was told, “The older will serve the younger.”9:12 Gen. 25:23 13Just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”9:13 Mal. 1:2,3

14What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Not at all! 15For he says to Moses,

“I will have mercy on whom I have mercy,

and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”9:15 Exodus 33:19

16It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God’s mercy. 17For Scripture says to Pharaoh: “I raised you up for this very purpose, that I might display my power in you and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.”9:17 Exodus 9:16 18Therefore God has mercy on whom he wants to have mercy, and he hardens whom he wants to harden.

19One of you will say to me: “Then why does God still blame us? For who is able to resist his will?” 20But who are you, a human being, to talk back to God? “Shall what is formed say to the one who formed it, ‘Why did you make me like this?’ ”9:20 Isaiah 29:16; 45:9 21Does not the potter have the right to make out of the same lump of clay some pottery for special purposes and some for common use?

22What if God, although choosing to show his wrath and make his power known, bore with great patience the objects of his wrath—prepared for destruction? 23What if he did this to make the riches of his glory known to the objects of his mercy, whom he prepared in advance for glory— 24even us, whom he also called, not only from the Jews but also from the Gentiles? 25As he says in Hosea:

“I will call them ‘my people’ who are not my people;

and I will call her ‘my loved one’ who is not my loved one,”9:25 Hosea 2:23

26and,

“In the very place where it was said to them,

‘You are not my people,’

there they will be called ‘children of the living God.’ ”9:26 Hosea 1:10

27Isaiah cries out concerning Israel:

“Though the number of the Israelites be like the sand by the sea,

only the remnant will be saved.

28For the Lord will carry out

his sentence on earth with speed and finality.”9:28 Isaiah 10:22,23 (see Septuagint)

29It is just as Isaiah said previously:

“Unless the Lord Almighty

had left us descendants,

we would have become like Sodom,

we would have been like Gomorrah.”9:29 Isaiah 1:9

Israel’s Unbelief

30What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; 31but the people of Israel, who pursued the law as the way of righteousness, have not attained their goal. 32Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone. 33As it is written:

“See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes people to stumble

and a rock that makes them fall,

and the one who believes in him will never be put to shame.”9:33 Isaiah 8:14; 28:16

Chinese Contemporary Bible (Traditional)

羅馬書 9:1-33

上帝的選民

1我在基督裡說真話,絕無謊言。我被聖靈感動的良心可以作證, 2我心裡極為憂愁,痛苦不止! 3為了我的弟兄——我的同胞以色列人,即使我自己被咒詛、與基督隔絕,我也願意! 4身為以色列人,他們擁有上帝兒子的名分、上帝的榮耀、諸約、律法、聖殿敬拜和各種應許。 5蒙揀選的族長是他們的先祖,基督降世為人也是做以色列人。祂是至大至尊,永遠當受稱頌的上帝。阿們!

6當然,這並不表示上帝的話落了空,因為從以色列生的,不一定都是以色列人, 7亞伯拉罕的後裔不一定都是亞伯拉罕的兒女,聖經上說:「以撒生的才可算為你的後裔。」 8這話的意思是:亞伯拉罕憑血氣所生的兒女並不是上帝的兒女,只有憑應許所生的才算是他的後裔。 9因為上帝曾這樣應許他:「明年這時候,我會再來,撒拉必生一個兒子。」

10後來,利百加和我們的先祖以撒結婚,懷了雙胞胎。 11在這對孩子還未出生,還沒有顯出誰善誰惡之前,上帝為了顯明自己揀選人並不是按人的行為,而是按祂自己的旨意, 12便對利百加說:「將來大的要服侍小的。」 13正如聖經上說:「我愛雅各,厭惡以掃。」

14這樣看來,我們該怎麼下結論呢?難道上帝不公平嗎?當然不是。 15祂曾對摩西說:

「我要憐憫誰就憐憫誰,

要恩待誰就恩待誰。」

16可見這並不在於人的意志和努力,而在於祂的憐憫。 17聖經記載著上帝對法老說的話:「我使你興起是為了在你身上彰顯我的權能,使我的名傳遍天下。」 18總之,上帝要憐憫誰,就憐憫誰;要叫誰頑固,就叫誰頑固。

上帝的烈怒和憐憫

19這樣,你肯定會對我說:「為什麼上帝還指責人呢?誰能抗拒祂的旨意呢?」 20你這個人啊!你是誰啊?竟敢頂撞上帝!受造之物怎能對造物主說:「你為什麼把我造成這樣?」 21陶匠難道不可以從一團泥中拿一部分造貴重的器皿,又拿一部分造平凡的器皿嗎?

22倘若上帝要顯示祂的烈怒和權能,就儘量容忍那些祂預備要毀滅的器皿, 23以便在那些祂憐憫並預備賜予榮耀的器皿上彰顯祂豐盛的榮耀,這難道不可以嗎? 24那些蒙憐憫的器皿就是我們這些從猶太人和外族人中被上帝呼召的人。 25正如上帝在《何西阿書》上說:

「本來不是我子民的,

我要稱他們為『我的子民』;

本來不是我所愛的,

我要稱他們為『我所愛的』。

26從前我在什麼地方對他們說,

『你們不是我的子民。』

將來也要在那裡對他們說,

『你們是永活上帝的兒女。』」

27關於以色列人,以賽亞先知曾疾呼:

以色列人雖多如海沙,

但得救的只是剩餘的人,

28因為上帝要在世上迅速、

徹底地執行祂的判決。」

29以賽亞又說:

「若不是萬軍之主給我們存留後裔,

我們早就像所多瑪蛾摩拉一樣滅亡了。」

以色列人和福音

30這樣看來,我們該說什麼呢?本來不追求義的外族人卻因信而得到了義。 31以色列人靠遵行律法追求義,卻徒勞無功。 32為什麼會這樣呢?因為他們不憑信心,只靠自己的行為去追求義,結果就在那塊「絆腳石」上跌倒了。 33正如聖經上說:

「看啊!我在錫安放了一塊絆腳石,

一塊使人跌倒的磐石。

但信靠祂的人必不致蒙羞。」