I wish it were better news today then it is. The good news is that we can choose...
9:8 That is, they who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; rather, the children of the promise are counted as the seed.
9 For this is the word of promise: “At this time will I come, and Sarah shall have a son.”
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, in order that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not by works, but by 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.”
It sure sounds like God has chosen the saved and lost before we were ever born and that God loves some of us only but that can't be so let's not get carried away by a few seemingly confusing verses. We must remember context always. Paul in this same letter already made the clear case that we are all in the same boat whether Jew or anyone else and that God has no favourites so what is this about loving Jacob more than Esau and declaring it before they were even born?
Sure sounds like this whole life is prearranged and we're just puppets.
Wait though. Context. The Jews sent Jesus to the cross yet they were the special nation. To them was given the prophecies and promises, the birthright if you will. They were among all nations the elder brother. They were Esau. That is Paul's point. Esau through careless unbelief lost what was originally his and it was given to another who did believe. God who knows the end from the beginning knew the choices Esau would make and He loved Jacob's choice but hated Esau's choice.
This is why Paul weeps for his countrymen. He can see they are leaning on their "birthright" when the truth is they threw Him away because Jesus is their birthright and 2000 years later they still wait as though another is coming...
The good news is some believed then and some believe now. Being a Jew or a Gentile neither gets you an exclusive pass nor does it disqualify. We will either believe like Jacob or we won't. The choice is always ours.