I was reading Romans 9 and 10 this morning before group and thought I would post it up. I was originally going to post a question concerning these verses, but I felt it better not to.
"What shall we say, then? That Gentiles who did not pursue righteousness have attained it, that is, a righteousness that is by faith; but that Israel who pursued a law that would lead to righteousness did not succeed in reaching that law. Why? Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as if it were based on works. They have stumbled over the stumbling stone, as it is written,
"Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense; and whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame.""
One thing I did noticed while reading this as I typed it is that the Rock is a Rock of offense. It is not offensive, as the majority of the church would have you believe today because it involves laws, rules, regulations, etc. (Romans 5 and 6 are clear that laws and rules have no part in the life of a believer) The Rock is an offense because God shows no partiality. All are sinners so that God may have MERCY upon all. It just kills us to fully believe that it is all of grace and none of oneself.
In Romans chapter 10, directly below the verses previously mentioned, Paul says,
"Brothers, my heart's desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved. I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge. For, being ignorant of the righteousness that comes from God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God's righteousness. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes."
I've seen this in myself. But reading this is like taking a cold shower in grace. I love being threatened with grace. I love "Either receive it freely and be saved or work for it and be doomed". Threaten me with grace all you want!! =)