Explore Sermons By Dr. Lloyd-Jones

Blessings Become a Curse

Book of Romans

A Sermon on Romans 11:7-10

What then? Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. The elect obtained it, but the rest were hardened, as it is written,

“God gave them a spirit of stupor,
eyes that would not see
and ears that would not hear,
down to this very day.”

And David says,

“Let their table become a snare and a trap,
a stumbling block and a retribution for them;
let their eyes be darkened so that they cannot see,
and bend their backs forever.” (ESV)

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How can something that the Lord created as a blessing become a curse? In this sermon on Romans 11:7–10 titled “Blessings Become a Curse,” Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones answers this question by preaching from the words of Paul when he refers to the law and the people of Israel. Paul acknowledges that the Jews were earnest and genuine in their search for salvation but they went about it in the wrong way. The passage says that those who were elect did in fact obtain it but that the Lord hardened the others. Israel was blinded and God gave them the spirit of slumber regarding the true message of the gospel. Dr. Lloyd-Jones explains the passage by saying that the very blessing of the word of God, the law, was once a blessing but became a curse to the Jews. They had the wrong thinking about so many things and despite their best efforts, they still did not truly know Christ and did not receive salvation. The only way to receive this blessing is by faith. Dr. Lloyd-Jones also explains in great detail several other Old Testament passages which show the ignorance of the Jewish people and how they did not understand the gospel.

Additional Scripture Translations

Romans 11:7-10, New American Standard Bible (NASB)

7What then? What Israel is seeking, it has not obtained, but those who were chosen obtained it, and the rest were hardened; 8just as it is written:

“God gave them a spirit of stupor,

Eyes to see not and ears to hear not,

Down to this very day.”

9And David says,

“May their table become a snare and a trap,

And a stumbling block and a retribution to them.

10May their eyes be darkened to see not,

And bend their backs continually.”

Romans 11:7-10, King James Version (KJV)

7What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded 8(According as it is written, God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day. 9And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompence unto them: 10Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back alway.

About Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.