I say then, have they stumbled that they should fall? Certainly not! But through their fall, to provoke them to jealousy, salvation has come to the Gentiles. Now if their fall is riches for the world, and their failure riches for the Gentiles, how much more their fullness!
For I speak to you Gentiles; inasmuch as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry, if by any means I may provoke to jealousy those who are my flesh and save some of them. For if their being cast away is the reconciling of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?
For if the firstfruit is holy, the lump is also holy; and if the root is holy, so are the branches. And if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive tree, were grafted in among them, and with them became a partaker of the root and fatness of the olive tree, do not boast against the branches. But if you do boast, remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you.
You will say then, “Branches were broken off that I might be grafted in.” Well said. Because of unbelief they were broken off, and you stand by faith. Do not be haughty, but fear. For if God did not spare the natural branches, He may not spare you either.
There is hope. That hope is part of faith. That hope says when we believe and receive the gift of grace; God’s forgiveness, mercy and redemption, we are grafted into his family. The illustration of the olive tree gives fair warning. The branches broken off and removed were broken because of lack of faith and belief. They were not broken to graft in the new branches. Paul warns us
“ do not be arrogant, but be afraid…” (NIV version)
There is a fear that is proper for it reminds us of who and what God is.
“Do not be haughty, but fear.”
Remember that if
“God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either…” (NIV version)
Again a reminder, the natural branches, those of the Israelites, were not spared due to their lack of faith and belief. Consider this:
” remember that you do not support the root, but the root supports you.”
Rather we thank him for the privilege of being grafted into his family through faith. Thank him for the nourishment received from him the root of the tree. There is a proper attitude when standing before Almighty God.
“…you do not support the root, but the root supports you.”