25 For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery—so that you will not be wise in your own estimation—that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in (Romans 11).
Of all the themes running through the book of Romans, this one seems to be one of the most prominent: the sovereignty and grace of God. We tend to think we are so wise about coming to Christ—that somehow we figured it all out on our own, and that the grace of God only meant the gracious opportunity for salvation being presented to us, without any of His help to receive it.
The truth is, without God’s tender touch to soften our hearts, they would remain as hard as stone. This is true both for the individual as well as for whole groups of people—like the Jews, for instance. But this is only a “partial hardening,” allowing for at least some of them to be saved. These blessed Messianic Jews are the exception “until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in,” and we embrace one another as beloved family members.
Lord, we again thank You for softening our hearts to receive the Gospel and the salvation You so freely give—that with this “partial hardening” also, logically came a partial softening, of which we are the beneficiaries. Continue to soften our hearts This Day to receive all you have for us—in terms of both blessings as well as commands. Amen.