Paul said in both Corinthians and Galatians that if someone preaches a different gospel other than the one he preached, it was corrupt and far from the truth ( II Corinthians 11:3-4, Galatians 1:6-9 ). Paul preached Christ, Christ crucified and Christ raised again. Christ was its foundation. He preached that through Christ's sacrifice we have been made perfect by faith. He made much of this grace message because this truth is the means whereby we are justified before God, having our sin cancelled and forgotten. This is the good news of Christ Jesus and hearing this message brings saving faith.
However this message gets distorted all the time and that is why Paul warns about straying from the gospel message he preached, based solely on Christ, him crucified and raised again. Otherwise, we are at risk of falling into a completely different gospel that takes Christ out of its center. There are several reasons this happens, one is ignorance of the scriptures and not knowing the truth of God's word. Secondly, some distort the message out of deceptiveness to lead people away from Christ and lastly, simply being "religious" can hinder you from this message of Christ. This happens when you no longer look to Jesus as the means for relationship with God but instead look to yourself and what you can do for Him. Paul said in today's passage that those contrary to the gospel are enemies of God.
Concerning Israel and the gospel, Paul said that they too are enemies on our account. Fortunately we know that this is a temporary thing because up until this time they have experience a hardness to this message of grace ( Romans 11:25 ). This is for our benefit because salvation was then opened up to the entire world ( Romans 11:12, Romans 11:15 ). So currently they are against the gospel and therefore enemies of God, but from the viewpoint of God's divine election and choice, they are still very dear to him. We must keep this in mind and look forward to the time when the full understanding of God is revealed to the Jewish nation and they turn to Jesus as their Messiah and cornerstone.
This is an awesome truth and one that bring us further understanding of God. He has chosen the nation of Israel as his own and he remains true to that choice even after their rejection of Jesus. Paul said in today's passage that "God's gifts and his call are irrevocable" ( Romans 11:29 ). Once decided, God does not change his mind. This is a comforting thought. James said, "Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows" ( James 1:17 ). There is security in knowing that God does not waver and change his mind like man does. You can be confident before him because he is not subject to whims and moods. He does not change like shifting shadows and so we can rest assured in those things he has promised. Hebrews says, "it is impossible for God to lie" ( Hebrews 6:18 ). If he spoke it, then he will carry it out unto completion. He has chosen Israel as a nation set apart for him and he remains true to choice. Even though they are enemies from the viewpoint of the gospel, they are beloved and dear to God for the sake of their forefathers.
This is great news for us today. God never withdraws his calls or gifts once they are given and he will not change his mind about who he offers his grace to. Even if we mess up greatly in life, God still does not revoke his call. His grace is more than enough for us no matter how we have failed. Remember; the gospel Paul preached had Christ at the epicenter and when we shift our focus to him then it takes the burden of our mess off us and places it on Christ who has the power to remove it as far as the east is from the west.
Today, I am thankful that God is faithful and true to His word. I am thankful that he does not resend his grace and calling. I am overjoyed that his grace is more than enough for us to continue through this life. May this revelation of grace bless you, amen.