The Apostle Paul in his letter to the Romans said, “And so all Israel will be saved;” (Rom. 11:26) and scholars have been baffled ever since. It is strange that a phrase, which on a surface reading would appear to be very simple, has in fact created great confusion. As Christopher Zoccali, a lecturer at Nazareth College remarks,

“It is perhaps quite ironic that while Paul clearly intends here to remove a certain ambiguity for his audience in regard to God’s redemptive plan for Jew and Gentile, this passage has nevertheless proven to be puzzling for Pauline scholars.”[i]

            With regards to this central passage there have been a variety of interpretations proposed which include the following: (1) the ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation, (2) the ‘ecclesiological’ interpretation, (3) the ‘Roman mission’ interpretation, (4) the ‘two-covenant’ interpretation and (5) the ‘total national elect’ interpretation. [ii]As to why and how this variety of interpretations have arisen, it may be only explained by the fact that due to the rest of the context of Paul’s letter to the Romans (particularly Romans 9-11) and Paul’s use of terminology, he is not as precise as we may wish him to be. For instance, in Romans 9:6 Paul said, “For not all Israelites truly belong to Israel.” ‘Does Paul have more than one definition within his thought? And does this mean that perhaps the ‘Israel’ in Romans 11:26 is not referring to Israel as ethnic Israel?’, are the kinds of questions that arise from such a simple clause. Not only does the context create such confusion but Paul’s extensive use of texts from the Hebrew Bible and as to how he uses them bring forth even more complications. Finally, the fact that due to some unique and central insights drawn from the text of Paul’s letter to the Romans, that were promoted and brought forth by Krister Stendahl, who was a Swedish theologian and the Church of Sweden’s Bishop of Stockholm, these various interpretations have taken on a new force of lively debate within the scholarly community. Some of Stendahl’s most poignant insights into Paul’s letter to the Romans and in particularly Romans 9-11 include,

“It should be noted that Paul does not say that when the time of God’s kingdom, the consummation, comes Israel will accept Jesus as the Messiah. He says only that the time will come when “all Israel will be saved” (11:26). It is stunning to note that Paul writes this whole section of Romans (10:17-11:36) without using the name of Jesus Christ. This includes the final doxology (11:33-36), the only such doxology in his writings without any Christological element.” [iii]

            Indeed, such insights can only draw in curiosity as to what Paul could have possibly meant by his baffling yet simple words. It shall be argued here that the ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation comes the closest to explaining as israelto what Paul meant by “And all Israel will be saved;” (Rom. 11:26) but along with this many more specific points need to be mentioned. As to why this interpretation comes only ‘the closest’ as opposed to being ‘correct’ to what Paul meant it is because Paul’s words need to be taken with such great nuance and careful detail that perhaps no template of interpretation will be able to take in every last point that needs to be made with regards to the text. We shall go through each of the opposing templates of interpretation first so as to address them fairly but nevertheless show that they do not come as close to what (perhaps) is the meaning of Paul’s statement as the ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation does. Throughout investigation here there will be abundant references not only to Paul’s letter to the Romans in the Greek but to the texts of the Hebrew Bible that Paul uses within his argument in order to show how the ‘eschatological miracle’ conforms most comfortably with the argument that Paul had made.

            In our examination of Romans 11:26 we first come to the view known as the ‘ecclesiological’ interpretation, which was of majority opinion within past generations of scholars such as John Calvin and still has notable modern day proponents such as N.T. Wright.[iv] The ‘ecclesiological’ interpretation of Romans 11:26 consists simply in the equation of Israel and the church in Paul’s terminology in this statement.[v] N.T. Wright, one of the world’s top Evangelical scholars of the New Testament, states the position much more fully in saying,

“And in this context ‘all Israel’ cannot possibly mean ‘all Jews’. It is impermissible to argue that ‘Israel’ cannot change its reference within the space of two verses, so that ‘Israel in v.25 must mean the same as ‘Israel’ in v.26: Paul actually began the whole section (9.6) with just a programmatic distinction of two ‘Israels’…It is therefore greatly preferable to take ‘all Israel’ in v.26 as a typically Pauline polemical redefinition…What Paul is saying is this. God’s method of saving ‘all Israel’ is to harden ethnic Israel…so as to create a period of time during which the gentile mission could be undertaken, during the course of which it remains God’s will that the present ‘remnant’ of believing Jews might be enlarged by the process of ‘jealously’, and consequent faith…”[vi]

Wright very succinctly summarizes all the key aspects of this view: (1) the supposed distinction between two different definitions of Israel in Romans 9:6, (2) that for Paul to make a ‘polemical redefinition’ is typical, (3) that the process of salvation of this ‘all Israel’ is understood as a process during a ‘period of time’ and (4) that this salvation is done by the continuation of the enlarging the ‘‘remnant’ of believing Jews’’ through missionary conversion alongside the gentile mission. As for the first aspect it shall be left till later when the ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation is brought forward but all the remaining aspects are at the very least questionable. As to the question of whether Paul makes redefinitions it may be arguable that this is indeed so (e.g. Phil. 3:3) but as to whether Paul has ever made a redefinition of the term Israel specifically, Wright and many others argue that Paul indeed did so in Galatians 6:16 where Paul supposedly refers to the ‘Israel of God’ when talking about the church. However this is highly questionable due to the nature of the word ‘καί’ in the sentence, for this word ‘καί’ could be rendered as ‘even’ in which case Paul is identifying the church with Israel or it could just as fairly be rendered as ‘also’ in which case Paul clearly has in mind two separate entities. So then Paul has not ever clearly redefined Israel in any of his other letters. As for the third aspect of Wright’s view, that Paul viewed the salvation of Israel as a process rather than as a single event and its chief basis on one observation of the text of Romans 11:26 that,

“Despite repeated assertions to the contrary, the meaning of οὕτως is not ‘then’ but ‘thus’, ‘in this manner’. Paul’s meaning is not a temporal sequence–first the Gentiles, then the Jews. Rather, it is the interpretation of a particular process as the salvation of ‘all Israel’.”[vii]

            However, Wright very much overstates his case with regards as to the meaning of ‘οὕτως’ in the Greek as being only of modal sense when most acknowledge that it is very unclear as to whether is has only a modal sense or only a temporal sense or both. In fact we know that Paul has used the pairing of Greek words found in this verse, ‘ουτως… καθως…’ before in Philippians 3:17 to use ‘οὕτως’ modally to connect it with the clause that comes after it instead of what precedes it.[viii] Meaning that in Romans 11:26 Paul could very possibly be connecting the phrase “And so [οὕτως] all Israel will be saved;” with what comes after it not what preceded it. Regardless of this it is acknowledged by many of the scholars that take the view that ‘οὕτως’ is used modally here that Paul also has a temporal sense in mind.[ix] The fourth aspect of Wright’s view, that what Paul envisions is the enlarging of the ‘remnant’ alongside the gentile mission shows the greatest flaw in with the ‘ecclesiological’ interpretation which is simply this,

“…it is seemingly inconsistent with Paul’s rhetorical purpose in this section of the letter, namely, to undercut a ‘Gentile supersessionism’ taking hold in the church at Rome and to demonstrate that God’s redemptive activity continues among the Jews, irrespective of appearances.”[x]

In summation then we may say that the ‘ecclesiological’ interpretation is, while in some aspects respectable, not thoroughly adequate to explain all the intricacies of Paul’s argument for the following reasons: (1) Paul no where else in his letters redefines the nature of Israel, (2) it is not clear that Paul envisions the salvation of ‘all Israel’ to be a process in a period of time and (3) it does not conform well to the rhetorical purposes of Paul’s argument.

            Another minority interpretative template for understanding Paul’s statement “And so all Israel will be saved;” (Rom. 11:26) has been dubbed the ‘Roman mission’ interpretation which was proposed by Mark D. Nanos and it basically argues that

“Here ‘all Israel’ represents Jews in Rome who have initially responded to the gospel as well as those who are at present hardened but, upon the beginning of Paul’s apostolic mission to the Gentiles in Rome, will be moved to jealously by his success and consequently believe…”[xi]

This interpretation will not be dealt with at length because this view has largely been rejected for some simple reasons: (1) it requires the strange belief, that Paul believed the Gentile mission would only begin once Paul arrived in Rome and most scholars would agree that this is certainly not what Paul was saying in his travel plans in Romans 15 and (2) it requires another strange belief (because it appears to stand in strong contradiction with the text of Romans itself) that Paul had somehow saw that there was a problem at the church of Rome that he would need to improve but as Paul says he would not “…build on someone else’s foundation…” (Rom. 15:20.)[xii] For these simple reasons the ‘Roman mission’ interpretation has not been widely embraced.

            While the ‘two-covenant’ interpretation may be still described as a minority position, it is more widely accepted than the ‘Roman mission’ interpretation and thus must be looked at more closely. The basic contention of the ‘two-covenant’ interpretation with regard to Romans 11:26 and with Paul’s theology in its’ entirety is simply “…that ‘all Israel’ represents the historical nation that is saved irrespective of Christ faith.”[xiii] While there is much detail and argumentation that goes into this view of arguing that for Paul Jesus provided a special way of salvation for Gentiles only and never thought of Jesus as the Messiah for Jews, for our purposes it is sufficient to stick with Paul’s letter to the Romans, particularly Romans 9-11 with regards to this interpretative scheme. One must understand that one of the key aspects of the ‘two-covenant’ interpretation is to maintain that, like the audience of most of Paul’s letters, the audience for Paul’s letter to the Romans consisted of Gentiles exclusively. With regards to this, John G. Gager, the now retired William H. Danforth Professor of Religion at Princeton University says,

“For if Romans, like Galatians, addresses a Gentile audience, on Gentile issues, including the status of the Jews, the final pillar in the edifice of Pauline anti-Judaism simply collapses.”[xiv]

In other words, because the interpreters who subscribe to the view that the audience of Romans is made up of gentiles exclusively, they believe that all the statements in Paul’s letter to the Romans that imply that Jews need belief in Christ to be saved or show anti-Judaic tendencies are simply misinterpreted. Those statements were never addressed to Jews in the first place and all the statements that imply the need for salvation and show how that salvation can be found in Jesus Christ are addressed to gentiles only.[xv] With regards to Romans 9-11 then we shall explore two important interpretative pillars for the ‘two-covenant’ scheme: (1) the nature of Israel’s hardening/stumbling (Rom. 9:18, 32-33; 11:7-12) as having “…nothing to do with accepting Christ as Israel’s saviour. What Israel missed was understanding the goal of the Torah as it relates to Gentiles.”[xvi] Or as not believing as Paul believed that Jesus was the way of salvation for the gentiles, not becoming Jews and (2) the quotation of Isaiah 59:20-21 as not referring to Jesus but to God as ‘the Deliverer’ who will ‘banish ungodliness from Jacob’ .[xvii] As for this first aspect it must be noted that Paul actually says that Israel’s stumbling was the very thing that opened the way and gave the opportunity for the gentiles to be saved (Rom.11:11-12.) With this then in mind we must ask the same question that was so wisely asked by Terence L. Donaldson, a professor of New Testament studies at Wycliffe College,

“For how can Israel’s rejection of Paul’s message of salvation for the Gentiles be the thing which makes that message possible or necessary in the first place? How could such a ‘stumbling’—Israel’s refusal to ‘join Paul in proclaiming his gospel of the righteousness of God to the Gentiles’ (p. 33)—be the occasion of such ‘riches’: Paul’s gospel of the righteousness of God to the Gentiles?”[xviii]

            Indeed, such a logical puzzle at the very least creates doubt with regard to this first pillar. As for the second pillar, being that Paul’s quotation of Isaiah 59:20-21 as referring to God as Israel’s savior (as opposed to Christ) is also highly problematic. While, as Stendahl pointed out[xix] it is highly unusual that there is no Christological language in reference to salvation in this section (10:17-11:36) it may be taken with high assurance that Paul by quoting Isaiah in this manner is in fact referring to a belief found prevalently throughout Paul’s writings (e.g. Phil. 3:20-21, 1 Cor. 15:1-28 etc…) that at the parousia, that is at the eschaton, Jesus will return and restoration shall be brought and iniquity shall be done away with. With this belief in Paul’s mind then is it perfectly appropriate (or so Paul believed) for Paul to use references from the Hebrew Bible that speak of God’s restoration of Israel to refer to Jesus as God’s Messiah, who would quite obviously be (in Paul’s mind) the agent through which God would bring about this redemptive activity. In many places even it is questionable whether Paul imagines much of a separation between God and Jesus at all (Rom. 9:5)! Furthermore, Paul has used the term ‘ρυομενος’ (deliverer) before in reference to Jesus (1 Thess. 1:10) contrary to Gager’s assertion that the term was used only with reference to God.[xx]  So then in summation of this view, while this view does bring some other helpful points such as that for Paul (in line with later Jewish scriptural interpretation) the ‘remnant’ (Rom. 11:1-5) actually serves as an instrument of Israel’s salvation, not its’ damnation,[xxi] it nevertheless does not seem adequate to explain exactly what Paul means by ‘saved’ when he says “And so all Israel will be saved;” (Rom.11:26.)

            We now come to the last of our interpretative templates that will be shown not to be entirely adequate to explain Paul’s words “And so all Israel will be saved;” (Rom. 11:26) before turning to the ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation, which is another minority interpretation known as the ‘total national elect’ interpretation. The ‘total national elect’ interpretation simply “…hold[s] that ‘all Israel’ refers to the complete number of elect from the historical/empirical nation.”[xxii] This interpretation will not be looked into at great detail for it very much resembles and relies upon a lot of the same arguments made with regards to the ‘ecclesiological’ interpretation such as the meaning of ‘οὕτως’. The only substantial difference between them is that the ‘totally national elect’ interpretation does not argue that Paul had in mind gentiles as part of this ‘all Israel’ and thus it does not try to argue that Paul made a ‘polemical redefinition’ of Israel as the ‘ecclesiological’ interpretation does. Zoccali, as a proponent of this view, argues that on the basis of Romans 10:13 where Paul quotes Joel 2:32 to say “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved” that it is unlikely that ‘all Israel’ would be saved by some miraculous event[xxiii]in Paul’s mind. This minor argument that Zoccali makes is of course a failure of imagination to see that for Paul calling ‘on the name of the Lord’ to ‘be saved’ and a miraculous eschatological event for Israel’s salvation are not in any way mutually exclusive. Another argument that Zoccali makes, with reference to Romans 11:1,11 is that Paul need not envision a special salvific plan for Israel for “Paul’s single concern is if God’s redemptive activity will continue among the Jews.”[xxiv] However, this is a slight misunderstanding of the attitude that Paul is trying to combat.

            Paul is not trying to combat the attitude ‘God’s not going to redeem any Jews ever again because they rejected Jesus’ but rather ‘God’s done with Israel as his people and has now replaced it with the ekklesia, the church’ or (as Paul refutes in Romans 11:1) ‘God has rejected his people and now has chosen us as his people’, and this distinction is very important to understand for it points to the belittling of the problem made by both Zoccali and Wright that Paul is dealing with during the course of his argument. The central problem with both the ‘ecclesiological’ interpretation and the ‘total national elect’ interpretation is that they both render Romans 11:26 anti-climactic.[xxv] What these interpretations do is essentially make Paul’s statement a ‘well duh’, they do not show just how much of a  ‘mystery’ this conclusion is for Paul’s argument in refutation of certain claims or show why not just the manner but the very fact of Israel’s salvation[xxvi] is a cause for rejoicing for Paul (Rom. 11:33.)

            Finally then we come to the last of the interpretative templates, the ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation, which shall be shown to most comfortably conform to the contours of Paul’s argument. The ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation is the prevailing opinion among Pauline scholars and in this interpretation “…‘all Israel’ represents the historical nation that will turn to Christ after the ingathering of the Gentiles and, as also generally held, at the parousia.”[xxvii] It is important to make some clarifications concerning this view for two aspects have been debated within itself: (1) whether Paul envisions the salvation of every Jew or whether Paul just means ‘ethnic Israel as a collective’[xxviii] and (2) whether “…‘all Israel’ should be understood as diachronically (throughout all time) or synchronically (at the time of the parousia.)[xxix] It shall be argued that not only does Paul see this salvation diachronically but that Paul holds out strong hopes for the salvation of every single ethnic Jew, though he does make some statements that suggest that it will be Israel as a collective body will be saved (as opposed to every single individual). Central to what shall be argued are the many new and important insights brought forth by Jason A. Staples, who is a PhD candidate in Ancient Mediterranean Religions at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Staples has brought attention to the way that Paul quotes certain texts from the Hebrew Bible as well as to the fact that “…the term “Israel” may—and often does—refer to Jews, though its meaning is not limited to just the Jews.”[xxx] As we shall see this will be important for as to how and why Paul sees ‘the full number of the Gentiles’ coming in (Rom. 11:25) as preceding and being part of the salvation of ‘all Israel.’

            The context of second-temple Judaism was so saturated with the belief and “…the apocalyptic expectation of a “pan-Israelite restoration”…”[xxxi] that it almost forces us to read “And so all Israel will be saved;” (Rom 11:26) within an apocalyptic setting. Significantly also are Paul’s many descriptions of his own ministry that parallel the life and description of the prophet Jeremiah such as when Paul speaks of himself as ‘an apostle to the Gentile’ (Rom. 11:13), which echoes Jeremiah’s commission as “prophet to the nations” (Jer. 1:5).[xxxii] This parallelism with Jeremiah is important because of the central role that the concept of the ‘new covenant’ plays within Paul’s thought (1 Cor. 11:23-26 and 2 Cor. 3:6) and Jeremiah’s thought (Jer. 31), which is such that it can only be concluded that Paul had the same pan-Israelite restoration expectation (the reunifying of both the northern and southern kingdoms) that Jeremiah had when Jeremiah wrote “‘For behold, days are coming,’ says the Lord, ‘when I will restore the fortunes of my people Israel and Judah.’” (Jer. 30:3.)[xxxiii] With this in mind then we must explore why Paul sees the gentiles as being part of this plan of the pan-Israelite restoration, for gentiles are nowhere mentioned in Jeremiah’s prophecy (Jer. 31.) The answer lies in both Jeremiah’s portrayal of God begging Ephraim (the northern kingdom Israel) to repent (Jer. 31:1-22) and the purpose of Paul’s quoting Hosea in Romans 9:25. Here Staples draws out the significant implication of the role of Ephraim in Paul’s quotation of Hosea,

“Paul’s connection of elect Gentiles with the motif of “my people”/“not my people” stems from much reflection on the Hosea tradition itself. The terrible message of Hosea is that God is cutting off the northern kingdom…. The house of Israel has intermingled, intermarried, among the nations, no longer having the distinction of being “elect.”…that is, they have become “Gentiles” …God has provided for the salvation of the Gentiles by scattering Ephraim among the nations only to be restored. In saving Ephraim, God saves the nations; in saving the nations, God saves Ephraim.”[xxxiv]

            The puzzling supposed ‘polemic redefinition’[xxxv] of Israel in Romans 9:6 that was brought up in reference to the ‘ecclesiological’ and the ‘total national elect’ interpretations makes much more sense in light of these insights concerning the promise of pan-Israelite restoration by restoring the house of Ephraim through the conversion of gentiles. Paul’s point in Romans 9:6 (and for the rest of Romans 9) is not God’s arbitrary use of sovereignty to damn whoever he may well please (as traditional interpreters have looked at it) but God’s right to have mercy on whoever he pleases (Rom. 9:15), including even gentiles who are not of Israel by descent but are still of Israel due to the scattering of Ephraim, which was ‘like a worthless vessel’ (Hosea 8:8)[xxxvi], it “…points to inclusion, not exclusion.”[xxxvii] So then we have found the key, within the ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation’s framework of the pan-Israelite restoration expectation, as to why for Paul the salvation of ‘the full number of the gentiles’ (Rom. 11:25) is related to the salvation of ‘all Israel’ and it is because Paul has been arguing throughout all of Romans that,

““Yes, all Israel will be saved,” he says, “but ‘all Israel’ is more than you realize”; Israel’s redemption is not limited to the Jews alone. God has promised to restore all Israel, and Ephraim—that is, “the fullness of the nations/Gentiles”—must be reincorporated into Israel and reunited with his Jewish brothers.”[xxxviii]

            Here then the ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation within this framework also explains how supersessionist readings came about. They came about by misunderstanding the nature of the ‘new covenant’ for the ‘new covenant’ was not a replacement of the old covenant but rather its’ restoration.[xxxix] We can see then that Paul is using and arguing for the most inclusive meaning of ‘all Israel’ within his apocalyptic framework. However while Paul may be very hopeful for the restoration of every individual among the harden part of Israel (Rom. 11:24) he does seem to express genuine grief over his ‘own people’ (Rom. 9:1-5; 10:1) which of course would seem unlikely if he believed that in the end they really would be saved.[xl] Furthermore, Paul does say that the harden part of Israel will very easily be grafted into their own tree “…if they do not persist in unbelief…” (Rom. 11:23, my emphasis) and this clause by Paul seems to imply that within Paul’s mind the otherwise (they will persist in their unbelief) could be the case.[xli] Finally, as for the question if Paul views this apocalyptic miracle at the eschaton of ‘all Israel’s’ salvation as diachronically or synchronically, while there is not much textual evidence either way Paul does seem very subtly to attach this salvation of ‘all Israel’ to the common Jewish apocalyptic belief of the resurrection of the dead (Rom. 11:15.) This reference suggests that for Paul, like most apocalyptic Jews in the second-temple period believed, at the eschaton everyone, from all of history would be resurrected (Dan. 12:2) and thus it seems unlikely that Paul would only think of the salvation of ‘all Israel’ as those that were alive at the time of Christ’s parousia, for at Christ’s parousia, in a sense all men throughout history will stand before him (Rom. 2:16; 1 Cor. 15:20-28 etc…) to be judged.

            The ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation then fits most comfortably with the contours of Paul’s argument for (1) it sets Paul’s argument within an appropriate apocalyptic setting, which not only fits well with Paul’s overall apocalypticism but adequately explains what the role of gentiles has to play in the salvation of ‘all Israel’, (2) it does justice to the climactic nature of Romans 11:26 by not redefining Israel nor making ‘all Israel’ an exclusive phrase as the ‘ecclesiological’ and ‘total national elect’ interpretations do, (3) it takes seriously the role that the Hebrew Bible takes in Paul’s argument by not only looking at the quotations but understanding their context in the Hebrew Bible and within second-temple Judaism, and (4) finally it does not require that the salvation of Israel have a sonderweg in comparison with how gentiles are saved for it takes the quotation of Isaiah 59:20-21 as messianic, it only says “…that Israel will come to such faith in the same manner as Paul himself, through a direct revelation of Christ.”[xlii]

            We have seen why Paul’s words “And so all Israel will be saved;” (Rom. 11:26) have taken on such great confusion in the scholarly community. All the other various interpretations (the ‘ecclesiological’, the ‘Roman Mission’, the ‘two covenant’ and the ‘total national elect’ interpretations) have been looked at and were found wanting. The ‘ecclesiological’ and the ‘total national elect’ interpretations did not take Romans 11:26 (it would seem) as profound and as climatic as Paul himself took it to be; the ‘Roman mission’ interpretation did not do justice to the context of the rest of Paul’s letter to the Romans; and the ‘two-covenant’ interpretation while providing some helpful insights strained too much to redefine what salvation meant for Paul in relation to Jews.  The ‘eschatological miracle’ interpretation a was shown to come closest to what Paul’s statement  “And so all Israel will be saved;” (Rom. 11:26) meant, for it avoided the many problems found with the other interpretations and it took seriously the Hebrew Bible texts as seriously as Paul would have himself. Paul ends Romans 11 by rejoicing over “How unsearchable are his [God’s] judgments and how inscrutable his ways!” (Rom. 11:33), for not only did Paul explain why Israel has not come to the gospel like he thought they would (by reversing the apocalyptic expectation of Israel being saved first and then the gentiles[xliii]) but Paul has found a God who’s very “…rejections prove salvific.”[xliv]

Works Cited List

Donaldson, Terence L. “Jewish Christianity, Israel’s Stumbling and the Sonderweg reading of Paul.” Journal for the Study of the New Testament 29.1 (2006): 27-54. SAGE Publications. Web. 2006.

Gager, John G. Reinventing Paul. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000.

Stendahl, Krister. Paul Among Jews and Gentiles, and Other Essays. Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1976.

Staples, Jason A. “What Do the Gentiles Have to Do with “All Israel”?: A Fresh Look at Romans 11:25–27.” Journal of Biblical Literature 130.2 (2011): 371-390. Project MUSE. Web. 21 Jul. 2011.

Stowers, Stanley K. A Rereading of Romans: Justice, Jews, and Gentiles. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994.

Wright, N T. The Climax of the Covenant: Christ and the Law in Pauline Theology. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1993.

Zoccali, Christopher. “ ‘And so all Israel will be saved’: Competing Interpretations of Romans 11:26 in Pauline Scholarship.” Journal for the Study of the New Testament 30.3 (2008): 289-318. SAGE Publications. Web. March 2008.


[i] Zoccali, Christopher. “ ‘And so all Israel will be saved’: Competing Interpretations of Romans 11:26 in Pauline Scholarship.” Journal for the Study of the New Testament 30.3 (2008): 289-318. SAGE Publications. Web. March 2008. Pg.1-2

[ii] This format of describing and organizing the various interpretations comes from: Zoccali, Pg.290.

[iii] Stendahl, Krister. Paul Among Jews and Gentiles, and Other Essays. Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1976. Print. Pg.4

[iv] Zoccali, Pg.293

[v] Staples, Jason A. “What Do the Gentiles Have to Do with “All Israel”?: A Fresh Look at Romans 11:25–27.” Journal of Biblical Literature 130.2 (2011): 371-390. Project MUSE. Web. 21 Jul. 2011. Pg.372

[vi] Wright, N T. The Climax of the Covenant: Christ and the Law in Pauline Theology. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1993. Print.  Pg.250

[vii] Wright, Pg.249-250

[viii]  Zoccali, Pg.291

[ix]   Zoccali, Pg.291

[x]   Zoccali, Pg.295

[xi]   Zoccali, Pg.295

[xii]  Zoccali, Pg.296-297

[xiii] Zoccali, Pg.297

[xiv] Gager, John G. Reinventing Paul. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. Print. Pg.106

[xv] Gager, Pg.104-105

[xvi] Gager, Pg.135

[xvii] Gager, Pg.141-142

[xviii] Donaldson, Terence L. “Jewish Christianity, Israel’s Stumbling and the Sonderweg reading of Paul.” Journal for the Study of the New Testament 29.1 (2006): 27-54. SAGE Publications. Web. 2006. Pg.41

[xix] Stendahl, Pg.4

[xx] Gager, Pg.142

[xxi] Stowers, Stanley K. A Rereading of Romans: Justice, Jews, and Gentiles. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994. Print. Pg.301-302.

[xxii] Zoccali, Pg.303

[xxiii] Zoccali, Pg.304

[xxiv] Zoccali, Pg.305

[xxv] Zoccali mentions this criticism only to quickly dismiss it: Zoccali, Pg.310

[xxvi] Zoccali in a footnote tries to make the point that Paul’s cause for rejoicing is not so much the fact of Israel’s salvation but the manner, however the fact that Israel is ‘beloved’ as ‘regards election’ and that ‘the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.” (Rom. 11:28-29) appear to be just as important to Paul as the manner of ‘all Israel’s’ salvation. Pg.310

[xxvii] Zoccali, Pg.290

[xxviii] Staples, Pg.373

[xxix] Zoccali, Pg.292

[xxx] Staples, Pg.375

[xxxi] Staples, Pg.377

[xxxii] Staples Pg.379: Other such comparison that Staples points out are Jeremiah’s being set apart by God before birth (Jer. 1:5) mirroring Paul’s similar claim (Gal. 1:15) and both Paul and Jeremiah’s knowledge of the Hosea text (Hos. 1:9) found in Jer. 3:8 and Rom. 9:25-26.

[xxxiii] Staples, Pg.379

[xxxiv] Staples, Pg.381-382

[xxxv] Wright, Pg.250

[xxxvi] Staples, Pg.381. Staples also points to this connection with Paul’s section about the vessels for dishonor (Rom. 9:21-24) and to the idea that “God even uses rebellion redemptively.”(Staples, Pg.384)

[xxxvii] Gager, Pg.131-132. One of another helpful points from the ‘two-covenant’ interpretation. Also Stowers, Pg.299-300

[xxxviii] Staples, Pg.387. It should be mentioned that Staples also ties the statement ‘the full number of the gentile’ with the prophecy of Genesis 48:19, which predicts that Ephraim “…will be greater than he [Manasseh], and his seed will become the fullness of the nations.” (Staples, Pg.385.)

[xxxix] Staples, Pg.397, 388. It should be noted too that to Wright’s credit he does seem to point to the fact that for Paul Israel would be “a worldwide family”, not “simply a subset of ethnic Israel” as the ‘total national elect’ interpretation would say and thus it would include gentiles, even though he still draws the wrong conclusion. (Wright, Pg.238.)

[xl] Wright, Pg.237. Also Zoccali, Pg.304.

[xli] Wright, Pg.248

[xlii] Zoccali, Pg.292

[xliii] Gager, Pg.136

[xliv] Staples, Pg.390