Jacob Thiessen, «Zorndemonstration Gottes mit Heilsabsicht? Zur Problematik der Syntax und der Bedeutung von Römer 9,22-23», Vol. 23 (2010) 37-72
The syntax of Rom. 9:22-23 raises difficult questions and has very close implications with understanding the text. That’s why both aspects are examined in this paper. Rom. 9:22-23 is neither treated syntactically as anacoluthon nor understood as aposiopesis. It makes more sense to view the two verses to be a kind of consecutive clause used as a transition to the comments following. The syntactic difficulties are resolved, if the introducing "ei dé" is perceived as a “stereotype” (like "ei dé mé") in the sense of “truly, however” resp. “accordingly”, thus adopting the functions of a conjunction (cf. also Rom. 2:17). So, in Rom. 9:22f., Paul draws the conclusion from what he has discussed before (cf. Rom. 9:17ff.) and leads over to the thoughts following (cf. Rom. 9:24).
In the first segment of Rom. 9 (cf. Rom. 9:6ff.) Paul had stated why God being the initiator and author of Israel’s election has the right to judge the “unfaithful” in Israel, without making void his covenant promises for the people. In Rom. 9:24ff. the idea of the “extension” of God’s “salvational intention” to the Gentiles is added, whilst on the other hand the apostle points out that only a “remnant” of Israel will be saved. God’s longsuffering in his judgments aims at making his salvational intention known to Jews and Gentiles. Rom. 9:17 implies this notion already. God’s purpose in judging Pharaoh was to proclaim his “name” throughout all the earth. This purpose is more clearly exposed in Rom. 9:23, and from Rom. 9:24 on Paul stresses that now particularly the Gentiles can get to know this salvation of God.