For you, brethren, became imitators of the churches of God in Christ Jesus that are in Judea, for you also endured the same sufferings at the hands of your own countrymen, even as they did from the Jews, who both killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets, and drove us out. They are not pleasing to God, but hostile to all men, hindering us from speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved; with the result that they always fill up the measure of their sins. But wrath has come upon them to the utmost.
Question: Which “Gentiles” is Paul referring to?
Is he referring to the elect Gentiles? For if he is,
they cannot be hindered, and Paul need not fret.
Or, is Paul referring to the alleged, non-elect
Gentiles? If so, hindered or not, what would it
Answer: Calvinists firmly believe that anyone
who is to be saved, will be saved. However, by
inferring this, Paul’s statement becomes
impossible. The only rational explanation is that
Paul is referring to the Gentiles indiscriminately,
with each having the possibility of salvation,
made possible through the power of the Gospel,
which the Jews were actively hindering.
John Calvin: “Their impassioned opposition to the Gospel in every part of the world was producing a stumbling-block of vast proportions, especially since they claimed that Paul was profaning the Gospel by spreading it among the Gentiles. By this misrepresentation they were dividing the churches, depriving the Gentiles of the hope of salvation, and blocking the course of the Gospel.” (Calvin’s New Testament Commentaries: Romans and Thessalonians, p.349, emphasis mine)
But according to Calvinism, who is being deprived of what? The alleged, eternal reprobates never had a hope, and Calvinism’s elect are unilaterally made preemptively Born Again. Consider this statement from John Calvin: “…those who believe are already born of God.” (John: Calvin, The Crossway Classic Commentaries, p.23, emphasis mine)
If Calvinism’s elect were already Born Again by an irresistible Regenerative Grace (in preparation to hearing the Gospel), then how can the Jews hinder their salvation? The answer is that it couldn’t. However, the Gentiles could be saved if the Jews stopped hindering Paul from preaching the faith-producing Gospel. (Romans 10:17)