Romans 11: Always Hope
Romans 11 provides a more detailed depiction of what happened to Israel and why the Gentiles had been allowed to be grafted into the family of God.
Rom 11:11 I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy.
Rom 11:12 Now if the fall of them be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness?
It is not as if God gave up on Israel. Even though they had fallen as a general rule in this time of history, the relationship was not lost.
Bringing this to the level of personal application, there are many people that have stumbled in their own lives. There are many people that have made bad decisions that derail their lives. However, there can be good that comes out of those situations. There can be positive outcomes even from negative situations.
However, even out of these negative situations, people can come back. There is always hope. There is always hope because God is good. That about sums it up. As the chapter in Romans points out, yes, the people of Israel fell, but all is not lost for them. The Gentile world became part of the family of God through the fall of the people of Israel, but how much more will everyone benefit when the children of Israel return? The family of God will be better than it ever has been.
Therefore, I think that is what we need to keep in mind when we talk about people falling away. There is always hope, and there is always an opportunity for those people to return. Yes, God can use bad situations to bring about good results. He does that all the time. However, it does not mean that those people who fell away are gone forever. They can return.