This related Q, What does "glory" of the Gentiles mean in Isaiah? deals with the word 'glory' which I'm not asking about. This other related Q, In Ezekiel 10:4, Why does Ezekiel see a Cloud not a man as the כְּבֽוֹד יְהֹוָה֙ Glory of YHVH - when Hebrews 1:3 definition of God's Glory is Jesus? deals with 'glory' in Ezekiel and Hebrews, again, which I'm not asking about.

The verses in Romans 9 I'm asking about begin with verse 27 through to 33, but there are 3 verses in particular that speak of the Gentiles:

"...the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith. But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. Wherefore? Because they sought it not be faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone..." [then quotes Isaiah 28:16.] Romans 9:30-32

Twice previously Isaiah had been quoted, so I turned there to learn how the Gentiles could attain faith that would enable them to see the glory of God. Isaiah 66:18-19 struck me with God saying he would gather all nations and tongues; they would see his glory. Then it adds, "and they shall declare my glory among the Gentiles." Is the Septuagint clearer as to who does what, regarding the Gentiles? It seems to switch from God, to some group of people, with Romans 9 making the Gentile's faith in God key to seeing God's glory.

If this is a muddle of a question, that's because I'm muddled trying to connect Isaiah with Romans 9. I just wondered if the Septuagint of Isaiah would throw light on the Greek of Romans 9.

1 Answer 1


Actually, Rom 9:33 quotes two different verses from Isaiah. Compare:

Rom 9:33 - as it is written: “See, I lay in Zion a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense (quoting Isa 8:14);

and the one who believes in Him will never be put to shame.” (quoting Isa 28:16)

  • Isa 8:14 (MT) - And He will be a sanctuary— but to both houses of Israel a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense, to the dwellers of Jerusalem a trap and a snare.
  • Isa 8:14 (LXX) - And if thou shalt trust in him, he shall be to thee for a sanctuary; and ye shall not come against [him] as against a stumbling-stone, neither as against the falling of a rock: but the houses of Jacob are in a snare, and the dwellers in Jerusalem in a pit.
  • Isa 28:16 (MT) - So this is what the Lord GOD says: “See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; the one who believes will never be shaken.
  • Isa 28:16 (LXX) - Therefore thus saith the Lord, [even] the Lord, Behold, I lay for the foundations of Sion a costly stone, a choice, a corner-stone, a precious [stone], for its foundations; and he that believes [on him] shall by no means be ashamed.

Thus, technically, Paul appears to quote the MT in half and the LXX in the other half of Rom 9:33. All these quotations are part of a more general series of verses whose origin in the Messianic prophecy in Ps 118:22, 23:

The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. This is from the LORD, and it is marvelous in our eyes.

Thus passage is quoted or alluded to many times both in the OT and the NT such as: Matt 21:42, Mark 12:10, 11, Luke 20:17, Acts 4:11, 1 Peter 2:7, as will as the cluster of texts such as Isa 28:16, 17, and Rom 9:33, Acts 4:11, Eph 2:20, etc.

Paul's point in Rom 9:30-33 is the summary of his argument in the rest of the same chapter:

  • Israel consists of spiritual inheritors of the promises not just biological Jews (V6-9)
  • Those that inherit these promises do so by faith and not by works of the law (V10-12)
  • That God saves because He has decided, to do not based on our faith/trust in Him and His based on mercy/compassion/love (V13-18)
  • God saves because He has has promised to do so out of His sovereign will (V19-29)
  • The focus of that Salvation is Jesus Christ the fulfillment of the OT prophecy of the great rock and cornerstone by faith/trust in Him (V30-33)

In the final section (above) Paul contrasts the works of the Jews with the faith/trust of the Gentiles. Paul is almost saying that works approach to salvation is like trying to be the cornerstone which Christ already is; thus, Christ is a stumbling stone, but not to those who trust in Him.


We should not ignore the other important point of Paul in his comments about being "ashamed". This word in the Greek is καταισχύνω and occurs 13 times in the NT (Luke 13:17, Rom 5:5, 9:33, 10:11, 1 Cor 1:27, 11:4, 5, 22, 2 Cor 7:14, 9:4, 1 Peter 3:16) and is always associated with God's salvation of lack of it.

The related verb shows this more clearly, ἐπαισχύνομαι (I am ashamed) and occurs 11 times in the NT (Mark 8:38, Luke 9:26, Rom 1:16, 6:21, 2 Tim 1:12, 16, Heb 2:11, 11:6) and is always associated with being saved or not.

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    "out of Egypt I have called my son" As Levi paid tithes while in Abraham's loins so Jesus was called out of Egypt in the loins of Israel. "...and so all Israel will be saved!" Dec 6, 2021 at 13:33
  • @MikeBorden - Good point, agreed. Thanks.
    – Dottard
    Dec 6, 2021 at 20:20

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