Monday, April 7, 2014

1 Corinthians Chapter 11 Part Two

1 Corinthians 11:18-19

The church was divided at a celebration which was meant to express unity (cf. 1Co_10:17). If these divisions (schismata; 1Co_1:10; 1Co_12:25) were related to those noted earlier (1:10-4:21), then one factor contributing to those divisions is evident here, namely, economic differences in the church (1Co_11:21).
Paul did not want to believe the report about their divisions (1Co_11:18), but he knew that sin was inevitable (cf. Luk_17:1) and would not pass unnoticed by God. This church was torn by dissension.
This is nothing exclusive to just that day. Even today nearly every church is divided. You remember on the day of Pentecost that they were of one accord. Little things are what separate a church. Whoever had written to Paul had written of the division. They were probably trying to get Paul to side in with them. Paul is saying, I believe it must even be true.
God’s approval (dokimoi) resumed a point Paul had discussed earlier (1 Cor. 9:27-10:10), where he used in 1Co_9:27 the contrasting word “disqualified” (adokimos). “Approved … manifest”: Factions revealed who passed the test of spiritual genuineness and purity. This is speaking of different groups in the church separating themselves off from the others, because of some little minor difference.
1Thes. 2:4 "But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts."
“Heresies” is defined as: Doctrine rejected as false by religious authorities. In Christianity, the orthodox theology of the church is thought to be based on divine revelation, and heretics are viewed as perversely rejecting the guidance of the church.
In the whole nation of Israel, freed from bondage in Egypt and bound for the Promised Land of Canaan, only two of that vast company gained God’s approval and entered the land (cf. 1Co_10:5). Many in the Corinthian assembly did not have this approval, which His discipline on them demonstrated (cf. 1Co_11:30-32). If the Corinthians thought the ordinances of the Lord’s Supper and baptism somehow communicated magical protection to the participants (cf. 1Co_10:12; 1Co_15:24), Paul’s excoriation must have been doubly painful since their behavior at this rite was directly linked to their chastisement (1Co_11:30-32) — the very thing they sought to avoid.

1 Corinthians 11:20-21

The Lord’s Supper should have been the remembrance of a preeminently selfless act, Christ’s death on behalf of others. One of the worst problems was that they had been taking communion daily, and it had become such a routine thing, that much of the meaning had been lost in the practice. The Lord's Supper was being eaten every time they came together in homes, or wherever they met. It had become habit, and not a true remembrance of what the Lord had done for them. Paul is saying that the reason to come together in one place is not just to take communion.
The love feast and communion celebration had become so perverted that it was a sinful, selfish mockery. They could not legitimately say it was devoted to the Lord, since it was not honoring to Him.
Instead the Corinthians had turned the memorial of selflessness into an experience of selfishness and had made a rite of unity a riotous disunity. While one brother went hungry because he lacked the means to eat well, another brother drank to excess. The abuse seems to be that they had come together to eat and not really to take of the communion supper. Possibly, at this time they were using fermented wine, since it speaks of being drunk.  
1 Corinthians 11:22

If the Corinthians wanted private parties they could have them in their homes. The meeting of the church was no place for a sectarian spirit of any sort, especially since the Lord’s Supper was intended to commemorate just the opposite spirit. To act in a spirit of selfish disregard for the needs of a brother was to despise the church of God, composed not of lifeless stones but of living people who could be grievously hurt. They were gathering together for the wrong reasons. All of this had nothing to do with worshipping God. They had forgotten that the real reason to come to church is to fellowship with God and learn of His ways. They had made a party out of going to church. It sounds pretty familiar, doesn't it? We hear that we must have all kinds of parties and recreation at the church or no one wants to come.
If they intended to selfishly indulge themselves, they might as well have stayed at home.
Did the Corinthian somehow think their libertarian acts were a matter for praise? (cf. 1Co_5:1-2) Just the opposite!

1 Corinthians 11:23-24

Paul proceeded to remind the Corinthians of what they knew but had denied by their actions. Whether this teaching came to Paul directly (by a vision; cf. Gal_1:12) or indirectly (by men; 1Co_15:1), it came with the Lord’s authority. Now, Paul is giving them what the true communion is all about. Since Paul was not there at the last supper, this had to be a revelation from God. It could, however, been related to him by the apostles that were present at the Last Supper.
While the information was not new to the Corinthians, because Paul had previously “delivered” it, it is an important reminder. This description of Christ’s final supper with His disciples is one of the most beautiful in all of Scripture, yet it was given in the midst of a strong rebuke of carnal selfishness. If this letter was written before any of the gospels as most conservative scholars believe, then Paul’s instruction was the first biblical record of the institution of the Lord’s Supper, given directly from the Lord and not through his reading of any other apostles.
The bread represented the incarnate body of Christ unselfishly assumed (Php_2:6-7) and unselfishly given on the cross for the benefit of others (2Co_8:9; Php_2:8), that kept needing to be remembered (cf. 1Co_4:8-13). Since they had been taking the communion table so lightly, Paul is reminding them that the bread that they take in this communion symbolizes the very body of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is, also, saying that they must remember His great sacrifice for all of mankind each time that they take communion.
1 Corinthians 11:25

The wine was a poignant reminder of Christ’s blood, without the shedding of which there could be no forgiveness from sin (Heb_9:22) and through which cleansing and a new relationship (covenant) with God was made (Heb_9:14-15). The word “covenant” referred to a relationship in which one party established terms which the other party accepted or rejected. The focus of the Old Covenant was the written Word (Exo_24:1-8). The focus of the New Covenant is the Living Word (Joh_1:14-18). Christ intended the cup to be a representational (cf. Joh_10:9; 1Co_10:4) reminder of Him: do this… in remembrance of Me. The fruit of the vine that they took in the communion symbolized the shed blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. The life was in the blood. The fact that they were handling the communion cup in a manner displeasing unto God was what had really upset Paul. He is reminding them of the seriousness associated with the communion cup.
The Old Covenant was practiced repeatedly by the blood of animals offered by men; but the New Covenant has been ratified once and for all by the death of Christ. “In remembrance of Me”: Jesus transformed the third cup of the Passover into the cup of remembrance of His offering.
1 Corinthians 11:26

The Lord’s Supper was a visible sermon that proclaimed “the message of the Cross” (1Co_1:18, 1Co_1:23; 1Co_2:2, 1Co_2:8), that is, the reality of the Lord’s death, and also the certainty of His return (until He comes) (cf. Joh_14:1-4). My own personal belief is, that the Lord should be remembered several times a year, or even more often, if you are doing exactly what this says, remembering Him in the communion. We find that to become repetitious about the communion, can cause us to overlook the true meaning of communion. We start doing this systematically, as these people did here, and forget why we are doing this. When we do this from obligation, we have lost the total meaning of it. Communion should be very special. The Bread symbolizes the very body of the Lord which He gave for the salvation of mankind. The cup of the vine symbolizes the very blood of the Lord which was shed to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sin.
The gospel is presented through the service of communion as the elements are explained. They point to His physical incarnation, sacrificial death, resurrection and coming kingdom.
Though there apparently was no prescribed schedule for the observance of the Lord’s Supper (cf. Ignatius Letter to the Ephesians 13:1), whenever it was celebrated its message of humiliation and subsequent exaltation (Php_2:6-11) went forth. This was a needed reminder to all saints, especially those in Corinth (cf. 1Co_4:8-13).
1 Corinthians 11:27-29

The Corinthians’ despicable behavior at the communal meal was not without result, which Paul proceeded to point out. Nowadays when this passage is read before participation in the Lord’s Supper, it is usually intended to produce soul-searching introspection and silent confession to Christ so that no one will sin against the spiritual presence of the Lord by irreverent observance. Paul’s application was probably more concrete. No doubt his experience on the Damascus Road (Act_9:4-5) contributed to this, for the body of Christ is the church, which consists of individual believers (cf. 1Co_12:12, 1Co_12:27). His body, the church, is also pictured by the bread of Communion (1Co_5:7; 1Co_10:16-17). Thus to sin against another believer is to sin against Christ (1Co_8:12). Those guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord were those who despised a poorer member by utter disregard for his need (1Co_11:21-22). This shows the seriousness of the taking of communion. Without true recognition of what the elements are, means that a person does not believe that they are, in fact, representing the body and blood of Christ. That person would be classifying them as just food for his body. You can see why this would be so dangerous. The Lord Jesus is the Savior of those who believe, not those who doubt.
To come to the Lord’s Table clinging to one’s sin does not only dishonor the ceremony, but it also dishonors His body and blood, treating lightly the gracious sacrifice of Christ for us. It is necessary to set all sin before the Lord (v.28), then partake so as not to mock the sacrifice for sin, by holding on to it.
These came to the remembrance of Christ’s work of unity and reconciliation (cf. Eph_2:15-16) with a trail of deeds that had produced disunity and alienation! If these would examine (dokimazetob;, “test to approve,” 1Co_11:28) themselves, they would see that they lacked God’s approval (dokimoi, 1Co_11:19) in this behavior. When you examine yourself, then you do not need to be judged of the Lord for this. If we try our own motives, then we will not take the communion so lightly.
The unworthiness here, is speaking of someone taking communion not really believing. It would be as if you were mocking the communion.
“Not discerning the Lord’s body”: When believers do not properly judge the holiness of the celebration of Communion, they treat with indifference the Lord Himself; His life, suffering and death.
They should seek out the wronged brother and ask his forgiveness. Only then could a true spirit of worship flourish (cf. Mat_5:23-24 and Didache 14. 1-3). Coming to the Lord’s Supper without that sin confessed brought judgment on the guilty participants. Only by recognizing (diakrinob, “properly judging”) the unity of the body of the Lord — and acting accordingly — could they avoid bringing “judgment” (krima) on themselves.
1 Corinthians 11:30-32

What that judgment entailed was then explained by Paul. In brief, it was sickness and death (cf. 1Co_10:1-11). “Sleep” here means physical death. The offense was so serious that God put the worst offenders to death, an extreme but effective form of church purification.
Here are other examples of those who would not or didn’t repent.
Luke 13:1-5 "There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices." "And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things?" "I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish." "Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem?" "I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish."
Acts 5:1 "But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife", as is told in verses 1-11.
1 John 5:16 "If any man see his brother sin a sin [which is] not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it."
The solution was self-examination (diekrinomen, 1Co_11:31; cf. 1Co_11:28-29; 1Co_5:1-5; 1Co_10:12), self-discipline (1Co_9:27), and promoting of unity. He is just saying, consider what you are doing, before you sin against God. If we judge our self, then we will do the correct thing and not need to be judged of others. The alternative was God’s judging (krinomenoi, 1Co_11:32), which was a discipline that they were then experiencing. Paul is speaking, here, to those who have made commitments to God. He says, even the judgment of God is for your own good to straighten you out before judgment falls on you from the world. Paul is saying, straighten this out in the church, before you are judged by an evil world.
Believers are kept from being consigned to hell, not only by divine decree, but by divine intervention. The Lord chastens to drive His people back to righteous behavior and even sends death to some in the church, v.30, to remove them before they could fall away.
This was not a loss of salvation, but of life (cf. 1Co_5:5).
1 Corinthians 11:33-34

If the believers were self-disciplined, they should wait in the Agapeb; meal till all arrived. Christians should not be like the world which is trying to push to the head of the line. Christians have a meek spirit which is patient and allows others to go first, if they wish to. It seems that Paul is having to teach basic Christian principles to these who should already be aware of all this. Why do they have to bring this up to Paul? Why could they not have determined these things themselves? They do not need someone from the outside to determine something that their own consciences should have taken care of. This also may have implied sharing the meal with others (cf. 1Co_11:22). If the demands of hunger were too great for some, they should satisfy those pangs at home before coming to the assembly. The Lord’s Supper was a time not for self-indulgence but for mutual edification (1Co_11:26). If you are coming just to eat, don't do it. Eat at home before you come, so that your greediness will not be apparent to all the people. It seems that the communion had been mixed in with the eating of meals which would have been really bad. We do know that they had started taking communion every time they met.
To mix communion with a regular meal would be to discredit the communion. They had even begun to use bread that was leavened at this point which discredits the sinless nature of the body of Christ.
There is no point in gathering together to sin and be chastened.
If the former prevailed, God would continue to discipline severely. Other matters — apparently less serious aberrations related to the Lord’s Supper — Paul would attend to when he returned to Corinth (1Co_16:5-9).

Romans Chapter 9 Part One

Romans 9:1-5

God’s Righteousness Revealed in Sovereign Choice
Since God is the self-existent Being who is the Creator of everything that exists outside Himself, He is sovereign and can therefore use and dispose of His Creation as He wishes. This sovereignty reveals not only His personal righteousness but also His provided righteousness.
 God’s sovereign choice enunciated
Paul here discussed God’s sovereign choice because of a practical problem. The Jews gloried in the fact that as Israelites they were God’s Chosen People (Deu_7:6; cf. Rom_2:17-20; Rom_3:1-2). But now in God’s program of salvation in the church, Jewish involvement was decreasing while Gentile participation was becoming dominant. Had God, then, abandoned the Jewish people? This is ultimately explained by God’s sovereign choice, a principle which has always been in operation even within the Chosen People of Israel and between Israel and other nations. Now this principle operates in God’s purposes for Israel and the church and in His dealings with Jews and Gentiles within the church.
Israel’s Privileges
By repetition in positive and negative terms (internally attested by the witness of his own conscience in the presence of the Holy Spirit) Paul affirmed his deep anguish of heart over the rejection of the gospel by the vast majority of Jews. We will see in the beginning of this chapter a sorrowful Paul. As we have said before in these lessons, Paul was a Pharisee and he never would quite give up on his Jewish brothers. He went to great lengths to try to reach them over and over. His greatest opposition came from his own people.  In many cases, Paul practiced the old Jewish law to try to win them to Christ, but even this failed and Paul went away sorrowful.
“Conscience” and “In the Holy Spirit” is speaking of only when the Spirit controls the conscience can it be trusted, but it remains imperfect and its warnings must always be evaluated against the Word of God.
It is a very good idea that any time you hear something you are not sure of, that you confirm it by the Word of God. That’s what the Bereans’ did in Acts 17:10-11 “And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming [thither] went into the synagogue of the Jews.” “These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.”
His desire for their salvation was so strong that he was at the point of wishing (imperf. tense, I could wish) that he were cursed and cut off from Christ for his kinsmen, the Israelites. The Greek word for accursed is anathema meaning “to devote to destruction in eternal hell”.
We see, here, in this verse that Paul would have gone to almost any length to have his Israelite brothers come to Christ. He says that he would even give up his own salvation, if this would have saved them.  Paul makes it clear, here, that these Israelites are his brothers in the flesh, not the spirit. His spiritual brothers are Christians.
Although Paul understood the exchange he was suggesting was impossible, it was still the sincere expression of his deep love for his fellow Jews.

Paul then listed seven spiritual privileges which belonged to the people of Israel as God’s chosen nation: the adoption as sons (cf. Exo_4:22), the divine glory (cf. Exo_16:10; Exo_24:17; Exo_40:34; 1Ki_8:11), the covenants (Gen_15:18; 2Sa_7:12-16; Jer_31:31-34), the receiving of the Law (Deu_5:1-22), the temple worship (latreia, “sacred service,” which may also include service in the tabernacle), and the promises (esp. of the coming Messiah). This just means that God had chosen the Hebrews (Israelites) to give the law to, and he had chosen them to be a peculiar people set aside to worship Him. God's first choice for the salvation message to go to was these Israelites.
Three times in the New Testament the word “covenants” is used in the plural. All but one of God’s covenants with man are eternal and unilateral, that is God promised to accomplish something based on His own character and not on the response or actions of the promised beneficiary. The 6 biblical covenants include:
(1)   The covenant with Noah.
(2)   The covenant with Abraham.
(3)   The covenant of law given through Moses at Sinai (The Mosaic Covenant)
(4)   The priestly covenant
(5)   The covenant of an eternal kingdom through David’s greatest Son
(6)   The New Covenant.
All but the Mosaic Covenant are eternal and unilateral. (Unilateral means something which is done by only one party) It is neither, since Israel’s sin abrogated it and it has been replaced by the New Covenant.
Also the Israelites were in the line of promise from its beginning in the patriarchs (cf. Mat_1:1-16; Rom_1:3) to its fulfillment in the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen. The fathers mentioned here are the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob through whom the promises of the Messiah were fulfilled.
“Christ … God blessed forever” is not intended primarily as a benediction, but as an affirmation of the sovereignty and deity of Christ.

Romans 9:6-9

The Choice Illustrated
Isaac over Ishmael
The failure of the Jews to respond to the gospel of Christ did not mean God’s Word had failed. Instead this rejection was simply the current example of the principle of God’s sovereign choice established in the Old Testament. Paul reminded his readers of a truth he had presented earlier: For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel, that is, spiritual Israel (cf. Rom_2:28-29). This refers specifically to the privileges and promises God had revealed to Israel. Not all Israel who are of Israel means that not all the physical descendants of Abraham are true heirs of the promise.
Those who follow God are His children. The followers of God which are not true Jews are considered grafted in Jews. Not those who were born into the house, but those who chose to follow God.
Then Paul gave three Old Testament illustrations of God’s sovereignty (Isaac and Ishmael, Rom_9:7-9; Jacob and Esau, Rom_9:10-13; and Pharaoh, Rom_9:14-18). The first two show that God made a sovereign choice among the physical descendants of Abraham in establishing the spiritual line of promise. Ishmael, born to Hagar (Gen_16:1-16) — and the six sons of Keturah as well (Gen_25:1-4) — were Abraham’s descendants (sperma), but they were not counted as Abraham’s children (tekna, “born ones”) in the line of promise. Instead, as God told Abraham (Gen_21:12), It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned (lit., “in Isaac seed [sperma] will be called to you”). Isaac was the son of promise. He represented the Spirit.  Abraham had a son of the flesh (Ishmael). The promises God had made to Abraham came through the Spirit, not through the flesh. You see from this that the Spirit of God and the promises thereof are for the Spirit, and not for the flesh.
Galatians 3:29 "And if ye be Christ's then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise."
To illustrate the truth of verse 6, Paul reminds his readers that even the racial and national promises made to Abraham were not made to every physical descendant of his, but only to those who came through Isaac.
Paul repeated the principle for emphasis in different words: It is not the natural children (lit., “the born ones of the flesh”) who are God’s children (tekna, “born ones of God”), but it is the children (tekna) of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring (sperma). “Children of the flesh” is a reference to Abrahams other children by Hagar and Keturah who were not chosen to receive the national promises made to him.
“Children of God: Paul’s point is just as not all of Abraham’s descendants who belonged to the physical people of God, or national Israel - not all of those who are true children of Abraham through Isaac are the true spiritual people of God and enjoy the promises made to Abraham’s spiritual children.
To be a physical descendant of Abraham is not enough; one must be chosen by God (cf. “chosen” in Rom_8:33) and must believe in Him (Rom_4:3, Rom_4:22-24). God’s assurance that the promise would come through Isaac, not Ishmael, was given to Abraham, see scripture from Gen. 18:10 “And he said, I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son. And Sarah heard [it] in the tent door, which [was] behind him.”
Genesis 17:19 "And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, [and] with his seed after him."  You see again here that the promise that God made to Abraham was to come through the child of promise (Isaac) the child of the spirit.
We can see the chain of blessings from the following verse in Genesis 25:11 "And it came to pass after the death of Abraham, that God blessed his son Isaac; and Isaac dwelt by the well Lahai-roi."

Romans 9:10-13

Jacob over Esau
The second Old Testament illustration of God’s sovereign choice is drawn from the second generation of Jewish ancestry. Apparently God purposed to establish this principle clearly at the beginning of His relationship with His Chosen People. This illustration emphasizes God’s sovereignty even more than the first since it involves God’s choice of one twin over another. (In the case of Abraham’s sons, God chose the child of one woman over the child of another woman.) In addition, in the case of Rebecca’s children God’s choice was indicated before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad. This demonstrated that God’s sovereign choice was not by works, even foreseen works, but by Him who calls (cf. “called” in Rom_1:6; Rom_8:28, Rom_8:30). Rebecca, also, had 2 sons; one of the flesh (Esau) and a son who the promises of God would flow through (Jacob) whose name would be changed to Israel.
God’s plan (Rom_8:28; Rom_9:11), and not man’s works (Rom_4:2-6), is the basis of His election. Rebecca was informed, The older will serve the younger (cf. Gen_25:23), a divine choice confirmed by God’s declaration, Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated (cf. Mal_1:2-3). This business of election is sometimes hard to explain.  We find that all through the Bible there are people who have been chosen out and called to do a certain thing for God. A very good example of that is John the Baptist who seemed to live for one purpose (to tell of the coming Messiah). God has elected that certain things will happen to get the job done that He wants done.
We see in the verse above, that He has chosen Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob to funnel the spiritual blessings to all the believers in the world.
I Peter 1:2 "Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied." 
We see from this, that God actually knew from the foundation of the world who would choose to follow Him and who would not. He did not predestine, He foreknew.
If we look back into Genesis we find this about Esau and Jacob as this was told to Rebecca.
Gen. 25:23 “And the LORD said unto her, Two nations [are] in thy womb, and two manner of people shall be separated from thy bowels; and [the one] people shall be stronger than [the other] people; and the elder shall serve the younger.”
We see in this that Ishmael (son of the flesh) served Isaac (son of the spirit). We, also, see in this that Esau (the oldest son) served Jacob (the younger son). Since we are looking at the spiritual side of these lessons, we cannot overlook the fact that the law was given first to the physical house of Israel, and that grace was given to the spiritual house of Israel (Christians). Grace is better than the law.
Esau, the older, did not actually serve Jacob, his younger twin; but Esau’s descendants, the Edomites, did (cf. 1Sa_14:47; 2Sa_8:14; 1Ki_11:15-16; 1Ki_22:47; 2Ki_14:7). Jacob and Esau was born approximately in 2005 B.C. Esau was the first born and when he was born, it was discovered that Jacob was holding onto his heel. He was called "heel-grabber". It is of Hebrew origin, and its meaning is "he who supplants, trips up another and takes his place."
Esau was also the father of the Edomites
We know that God would not hate Esau without a cause. God hated Esau, not because of who he was, but because he did not regard his birthright as being very valuable. In fact, he thought so little of it that he sold it to his brother for a bowl of soup.
Malachi 1:2-3 “I have loved you, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, wherein hast thou loved us? [Was] not Esau Jacob's brother? Saith the LORD: yet I loved Jacob,” “And I hated Esau, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragons of the wilderness.”
The blessing of God through Abraham and Isaac then would come through the second son Jacob. From him, the 12 tribes of Israel would come. I say, again, God did not just hate Esau without a cause. Esau turned his back on God.
Now having said all of that let me explain the love and hate being mentioned.
Actual emotional hatred for Esau and his offspring is not the point here. Genesis mentions no divine hatred toward Esau but Obad. 1-21 indicated that the Lord’s hatred was against Esau’s idolatrous descendants. In the same way, the Lord’s love for Jacob refers to his descendants who were His sovereignly elected people through whom the world’s Redeemer would come.
The love/hate relationship language does not signify a comparative love in which God loved Jacob more and Esau less. Rather, the context here speaks of love as “choosing for intimate fellowship” and hate as “not choosing for intimate fellowship” in the realm of redemption.
God’s “love” for Jacob was revealed in His choice of Jacob and God’s “hatred” for Esau was seen in His rejecting Esau for the line of promise. Hatred in this sense is not absolute but relative to a higher choice (cf. Mat_6:24; Luk_14:26; Joh_12:25).

Romans 9:14-18

With the words, What then shall we say? (cf. Rom_4:1; Rom_6:1; Rom_8:31) Paul introduced the question undoubtedly in his readers’ minds, Is God unjust in choosing Isaac over Ishmael, and Jacob over Esau? The Greek negative particle (mē) with a question implies a negative response. Paul responded in his usual emphatic way, Not at all! (mē genoito) If this had been predestined some would say this was unfair, but this was not predestined, only known ahead of time by God.
Paul had once again anticipated his reader’s objection to Paul’s theology: If God were to choose some people for salvation and pass over others apart from their merits or actions, that would make god arbitrary and unfair.
The issue in such matters is not justice but sovereign decision, as God’s word to Moses (Exo_33:19) quoted by Paul indicates. As the sovereign God, He has the right to show mercy to whomever He chooses. It is God's world and we are His creation. He can do with us whatever He chooses to do. We are His creation and He is the Creator.
This is quoted from Exodus 33:19. In response to the accusation that such a teaching about God’s sovereign election is inconsistent with His fairness, Paul cites this text from the Old Testament that clearly indicates that God is absolutely sovereign and does elect who will be saved without violating His other attributes. He determines who receives mercy.
In fact, He is not under obligation to extend mercy to anyone. Therefore experiencing His mercy does not… depend on man’s desire (lit., “the one willing”) or effort (lit., “the one running”). No one deserves or can earn His mercy. Many will seek to do the things of God, but many will do these things for the wrong reasons. Just being a good person and doing things their way according to how they believe, no matter what they do, will not be shown mercy. We live in a society today that this has become the norm. Many have created their own God instead of obeying God’s Word. This will be a fatal mistake as many in that day will cry out “Lord, Lord” but the Lord will tell them “Depart, I never knew you.”
It is God and He alone who shows mercy. It is His gracious choice of certain people unto eternal life. Salvation is not initiated by human choice and even faith is a gift of God. Salvation is never merited by human effort.
I Peter 2:9-10 "But ye [are] a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:" "Which in time past [were] not a people, but [are] now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy." 
We read, also, Titus 3:5 "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost."
The Apostle Paul then presented his third illustration, the Egyptian Pharaoh of the Exodus. To him God said through Moses, I raised you up (i.e., brought you onto the scene of history) to display My power in you and that My name might be proclaimed in all the earth (cf. Exo_9:16). God’s power (cf. Rom_9:22) was demonstrated as He freed the Israelites from under Pharaoh’s hand. And other nations heard about it and were awed (Exo_15:14-16; Jos_2:10-11; Jos_9:9; 1Sa_4:8). This Old Testament quote proves that God does sovereignly choose who will serve His purposes and how. The “raised thee up” was often used to describe the rise of leaders and countries to positions of prominence. Pharaoh no doubt thought his position and actions were of his own free choice to accomplish his own purposes, but in reality he was there to serve Go’s purpose.
We know that the 10 plagues that came upon Egypt were for the purpose of discrediting the false gods of Egypt. Egypt represents the world. God shows, through Pharaoh's rebellion, that the gods of this world are no match for the real God. We see an almost identical Scripture in the Old Testament account of this event.
Exodus 9:16 "And in very deed for this [cause] have I raised thee up, for to shew [in] thee my power; and that my name may be declared throughout all the earth." 
I Samuel 2:7-8 "The LORD maketh poor, and maketh rich: he bringeth low, and lifteth up." “He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, [and] lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set [them] among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory: for the pillars of the earth [are] the LORD'S, and he hath set the world upon them." 
Look also at Proverbs 16:4 "The LORD hath made all [things] for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil."  This all speaks for itself, we need no more comment here.
It is significant that Paul introduced this quotation with the words, For the Scripture says, for he equated the words of God with the words of Scripture. Paul concluded, God has mercy on whom He wants to have mercy (cf. Rom_9:15) and He hardens whom He wants to harden (“make stubborn”; cf. Exo_4:21; Exo_7:3; Exo_9:12; Exo_10:27; Exo_14:4, Exo_14:8; cf. Exo_14:17). Have you even read that God hardened someone’s heart and wondered why our God would do that to someone? Let’s examine this a little closer.
The Greek word for hardens literally means to make something hard, but is often used figuratively to refer to making stubborn or obstinate. Then times Exodus refers to God’s hardening Pharaoh’s heart, and other times to Pharaoh’s hardening his own heart.
This does not mean that God actively created unbelief or some other evil in Pharaoh’s heart, but rather that He withdrew all the divine influences that ordinarily acted as a restraint to sin and allowed Pharaoh’s wicked heart to pursue its sin unabated.
Exodus 4:21" And the LORD said unto Moses, When thou goest to return into Egypt, see that thou do all those wonders before Pharaoh, which I have put in thine hand: but I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go."
We also see this very same thing in Joshua 11:20 "For it was of the LORD to harden their hearts, that they should come against Israel in battle, that he might destroy them utterly, [and] that they might have no favor, but that he might destroy them, as the LORD commanded Moses."
We are not to question God's motives. In both of these instances, this taught us that God is even in control of Satan and all his evil forces. God can cause them to destroy themselves especially by creating fear in their hearts by allowing them to believe a delusion. Remember the story of Gideon?
Because of God’s choice, Pharaoh then hardened his own heart (Exo_7:13-14, Exo_7:22; Exo_8:15, Exo_8:19, Exo_8:32; Exo_9:7, Exo_9:34-35). All this shows that God chooses and works sovereignly, but not arbitrarily. Yet Pharaoh was responsible for his actions.