Paul’s Use of Elijah’s Mt. Horeb Experience in Romans 11:2-6

Michael G. Vanlaningham | August 25, 2009

Paul’s use of 1 Kgs 19:10-18 in Rom 11:2-6 has an important role in his proof that God has not cast off His people Israel. His main dependence is upon the Massoretic Text rather than the Septuagint. He makes a number of changes in his adaptation of the OT passage, none of which violates the meaning of the OT context. Despite apparent parallels between Elijah and Moses in the OT, the 1 Kings passage does not elevate Elijah to the level of Moses in God’s plan. Rather it emphasizes the sovereignty of God at work to preserve a remnant. Paul’s theological emphasis in Rom 11:2-6 is upon God’s preservation of a remnant of Jews through grace, not human merit. Through this means He guards against the total loss of the people of Israel.

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