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Romans 9:10–16

10 aAnd not only this, but there was bRebekah also, when she had conceived twins by one man, our father Isaac;

11 for though the twins were not yet born and had not done anything good or bad, so that aGod’s purpose according to His choice would 1stand, not 2because of works but 2because of Him who calls,

12 it was said to her, “aThe older will serve the younger.”

13 Just as it is written, “aJacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”

14 aWhat shall we say then? bThere is no injustice with God, is there? cMay it never be!

15 For He says to Moses, “aI will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”

16 So then it does not depend on the man who wills or the man who aruns, but on bGod who has mercy.

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Romans 9:10–16 — The New International Version (NIV)

10 Not only that, but Rebekah’s children were conceived at the same time by our father Isaac. 11 Yet, before the twins were born or had done anything good or bad—in order that God’s purpose in election might stand: 12 not by works but by him who calls—she was told, “The older will serve the younger.” 13 Just as it is written: “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”

14 What then shall we say? Is God unjust? Not at all! 15 For he says to Moses,

“I will have mercy on whom I have mercy,

and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”

16 It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or effort, but on God’s mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — English Standard Version (ESV)

10 And not only so, but also when Rebekah had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, 11 though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad—in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of him who calls— 12 she was told, “The older will serve the younger.” 13 As it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”

14 What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! 15 For he says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” 16 So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — King James Version (KJV 1900)

10 And not only this; but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac; 11 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;) 12 It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. 13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.

14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid. 15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — New Living Translation (NLT)

10 This son was our ancestor Isaac. When he married Rebekah, she gave birth to twins. 11 But before they were born, before they had done anything good or bad, she received a message from God. (This message shows that God chooses people according to his own purposes; 12 he calls people, but not according to their good or bad works.) She was told, “Your older son will serve your younger son.” 13 In the words of the Scriptures, “I loved Jacob, but I rejected Esau.”

14 Are we saying, then, that God was unfair? Of course not! 15 For God said to Moses,

“I will show mercy to anyone I choose,

and I will show compassion to anyone I choose.”

16 So it is God who decides to show mercy. We can neither choose it nor work for it.

Romans 9:10–16 — The New King James Version (NKJV)

10 And not only this, but when Rebecca also had conceived by one man, even by our father Isaac 11 (for the children not yet being born, nor having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of Him who calls), 12 it was said to her, “The older shall serve the younger.” 13 As it is written, “Jacob I have loved, but Esau I have hated.”

14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? Certainly not! 15 For He says to Moses, “I will have mercy on whomever I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I will have compassion.” 16 So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — New Century Version (NCV)

10 And that is not all. Rebekah’s sons had the same father, our father Isaac. 11 But before the two boys were born, God told Rebekah, “The older will serve the younger.” This was before the boys had done anything good or bad. God said this so that the one chosen would be chosen because of God’s own plan. He was chosen because he was the one God wanted to call, not because of anything he did. 13 As the Scripture says, “I loved Jacob, but I hated Esau.”

14 So what should we say about this? Is God unfair? In no way. 15 God said to Moses, “I will show kindness to anyone to whom I want to show kindness, and I will show mercy to anyone to whom I want to show mercy.” 16 So God will choose the one to whom he decides to show mercy; his choice does not depend on what people want or try to do.

Romans 9:10–16 — American Standard Version (ASV)

10 And not only so; but Rebecca also having conceived by one, even by our father Isaac— 11 for the children being not yet born, neither having done anything good or bad, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth, 12 it was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. 13 Even as it is written, Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.

14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid. 15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion. 16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that hath mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — 1890 Darby Bible (DARBY)

10 And not only that, but Rebecca having conceived by one, Isaac our father, 11 the children indeed being not yet born, or having done anything good or worthless (that the purpose of God according to election might abide, not of works, but of him that calls), 12 it was said to her, The greater shall serve the less: 13 according as it is written, I have loved Jacob, and I have hated Esau.

14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? Far be the thought. 15 For he says to Moses, I will shew mercy to whom I will shew mercy, and I will feel compassion for whom I will feel compassion. 16 So then it is not of him that wills, nor of him that runs, but of God that shews mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)

10 The same thing happened to Rebekah. Rebekah became pregnant by our ancestor Isaac. 11 Before the children had been born or had done anything good or bad, Rebekah was told that the older child would serve the younger one. This was said to Rebekah so that God’s plan would remain a matter of his choice, 12 a choice based on God’s call and not on anything people do.13 The Scriptures say, “I loved Jacob, but I hated Esau.” 

14 What can we say—that God is unfair? That’s unthinkable! 15 For example, God said to Moses, “I will be kind to anyone I want to. I will be merciful to anyone I want to.” 16 Therefore, God’s choice does not depend on a person’s desire or effort, but on God’s mercy. 

Romans 9:10–16 — The Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

10 And not only that, but also Rebekah received a promise when she became pregnant by one man, our ancestor Isaac. 11 For though her sons had not been born yet or done anything good or bad, so that God’s purpose according to election might stand— 12 not from works but from the One who calls—she was told: The older will serve the younger. 13 As it is written: I have loved Jacob, but I have hated Esau.

14 What should we say then? Is there injustice with God? Absolutely not! 15 For He tells Moses:

I will show mercy

to whom I will show mercy,

and I will have compassion

on whom I will have compassion.

16 So then it does not depend on human will or effort but on God who shows mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — The New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

10 Nor is that all; something similar happened to Rebecca when she had conceived children by one husband, our ancestor Isaac. 11 Even before they had been born or had done anything good or bad (so that God’s purpose of election might continue, 12 not by works but by his call) she was told, “The elder shall serve the younger.” 13 As it is written,

“I have loved Jacob,

but I have hated Esau.”

14 What then are we to say? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! 15 For he says to Moses,

“I will have mercy on whom I have mercy,

and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”

16 So it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God who shows mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — The Lexham English Bible (LEB)

10 And not only this, but also when Rebecca conceived children by one man, Isaac our father—11 for although they had not yet been born, or done anything good or evil, in order that the purpose of God according to election might remain, 12 not by works but by the one who calls—it was said to her, “The older will serve the younger,” 13 just as it is written, “Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.”

14 What then shall we say? There is no injustice with God, is there? May it never be! 15 For to Moses he says, “I will have mercy on whomever I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whomever I have compassion.” 16 Consequently therefore, it does not depend on the one who wills or on the one who runs, but on God who shows mercy.

Romans 9:10–16 — New International Reader’s Version (1998) (NIrV)

10 And that’s not all. Rebekah’s children had the same father. He was our father Isaac.

11 Here is what happened. Rebekah’s twins had not even been born. They hadn’t done anything good or bad yet. So they show that God’s purpose is based firmly on his free choice. 12 It was not because of anything they did but because of God’s choice. So Rebekah was told, “The older son will serve the younger one.” 13 It is written, “I chose Jacob instead of Esau.”

14 What should we say then? Is God unfair? Not at all! 15 He said to Moses,

“I will have mercy on whom I have mercy.

I will show love to those I love.”

16 So it doesn’t depend on what we want or do. It depends on God’s mercy.


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