Romans 11:13-24

Paul speaks to the Gentiles

13 Now I am speaking to you who are Gentiles. God has sent me to be his apostle to the Gentiles. I thank him that he has given this important work to me. 14 I hope that my work among you Gentiles will cause my own people to be jealous. As a result, some of them may turn to God, so that he saves them. 15 When God turned away from Israel's people, he then accepted other people in the world as his friends. So, when God does accept Israel's people, the result will be even better! It will be like dead people who have become alive again!

16 If you offer the first piece of bread to God, then all the bread will belong to God. If the roots of a tree belong to God, then the branches will also be his.

17 Israel's people are like an olive tree that a farmer has planted. But God has broken off some of that tree's branches. Then he has taken a branch from a wild olive tree. He has put that wild branch into the farmer's tree, to become part of that tree. You Gentiles are like the wild branch. Now you receive food from the root of the farmer's tree, to make you strong. 18 Israel's people are like the branches that God broke off. But you must not think that you are better than those branches. Remember that you are still only a branch. You do not make the root strong. No, it is the root that holds you up and makes you strong.

19 You might say, ‘God broke off the branches so that I could become part of the tree.’ 20 That is true. God broke them off because they did not believe in Christ. God has accepted you as part of the tree because you do believe in Christ. So do not become proud. Instead, be afraid. 21 God broke off the proper branches and he did not let them stay in the tree. So, if you no longer trust him, he will not let you stay either.

22 So you should think about what God is like. He is kind, but he also punishes people. He has punished Israel's people, because they turned away from him. He has been kind to you. But you must continue to accept his kind gift. If you do not do that, he will break you off from his tree as well.

23 God is able to accept Israel's people back again. If they come to believe in Christ, God will put them back as part of the tree. He is able to make them become branches of the tree again. 24 God cut you like branches from a wild olive tree. Then he put you into the farmer's olive tree so that you became part of it. He could do that even though that was not your own tree before. So God will be able to do that for Israel's people. He can easily put them back into their own tree, that they were part of before.

11:24When Jesus lived on earth, most of Israel's people, the Jews, did not believe that Jesus was God's Messiah. They were no longer part of God's true people. God's true people were like an olive tree that God had planted long ago. The wild olive tree is like the Gentiles. If they believe in Jesus, they become part of God's people. If the Jews decide to believe in Jesus, then they also belong to God's people again.