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The Case For The "Israel of God" Part 7

Discussion in 'Eschatology - Endtimes & Prophecy Forum' started by ebedmelech, Mar 13, 2013.

  1. ebedmelech

    ebedmelech My dog Micah in the pic Supporter

    Link to Part 1 http://www.christianforums.com/t7723632/

    Link to Part 2: http://www.christianforums.com/t7723807/

    Link to Part 3: http://www.christianforums.com/t7724285/

    Link to Part 4:

    Link to Part 5: http://www.christianforums.com/t7725451/

    Link to Part 6:

    In Romans 11:1-4, Paul makes it clear that God has not totally cast off Israel:

    I say then, God has not rejected His people, has He? May it never be! For I too am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.
    2 God has not rejected His people whom He foreknew. Or do you not know what the Scripture says in the passage about Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel? 3 “Lord, they have killed Your prophets, they have torn down Your altars, and I alone am left, and they are seeking my life
    4 But what is the divine response to him? “I have kept for Myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal

    It is clear that God didn’t totally turn away from Israel despite their breaking of the Sinaitic Covenant God made with them. Paul further makes the point that he, being a Jew confirms that God has not rejected Israel.

    Paul turns to the prophet Elijah to demonstrate this. The story is in 1 Kings 19, Elijah went up against the prophets of Baal, and they were all killed for their idolatry after God answered Elijah by fire and devoured Elijah’s sacrifice. Jezebel threatened to kill Elijah and he became fearful. Elijah complained to God that he was all alone. However God informed Elijah that He had reserved 7000 who were still faithful to Him ( a remnant).

    Paul now uses that point (the remnant of 7000), to again demonstrate God’s grace and sovereignty:
    Romans 11:5, 6:
    5 In the same way then, there has also come to be at the present time a remnant according to God’s gracious choice.
    6 But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.

    The apostle wants us to understand that God is saving a remnant of Jews by His own gracious choice! Paul makes it clear that the remnant is being chosen for nothing they did, but simply by God’s sovereign grace and mercy!

    Now Paul explains how God is now dealing with Israel in Romans 11:7:
    7 What then? What Israel is seeking, it has not obtained, but those who were chosen obtained it, and the rest were hardened;

    Many of Israel didn’t obtain salvation by faith in God. Paul reveals to us that most of Israel has been hardened by God, as a result of their failure, but that a remnant is being saved. He quotes Isaiah 29:10 to make this point! The Isaiah 29 prophecy is one of the destruction of Jerusalem that would come at the hands of Nebuchadnezzar, and also the blinding of Israel as punishment. Romans 11:8:

    8 just as it is written, “God gave them a spirit of stupor, Eyes to see not and ears to hear not, Down to this very day.”

    This is part Israel’s punishment by God. We see it as we read the gospels. Many of Israel could not see nor understand much of the teaching of Christ during His ministry, and Isaiah 29:10 is why. Paul informs us that this was prophesied by Isaiah, and he further points out that David also prophesied it in Psalm 69:22, 23...at Romans 11:9, 10:

    9 And David says, “Let their table become a snare and a trap, And a stumbling block and a retribution to them.
    10 “Let their eyes be darkened to see not, And bend their backs forever

    Paul now focuses on the point that Israel’s sin, God granted salvation to the Gentiles, and that God would make Israel jealous because of it! Romans 11:11, 12:

    11 I say then, they did not stumble so as to fall, did they?May it never be!But by their transgressionsalvation has come to the Gentiles, to make them jealous.
    12 Now if their transgression is riches for the world and their failure is riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their fulfillment be!

    A tremendous point is now made by Paul that the Gentiles are part of the fulfillment of Israel. This is the point at which “the Israel of God” becomes very clear. And where many miss that God has SPIRITUAL ISRAEL in mind!!!

    Paul now begins to combine Jews and Gentiles as ONE as well as pointing out that through his ministry to the Gentiles, he hopes to cause more Jews to be saved Romans 11:13-15:

    13 But I am speaking to you who are Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle of Gentiles, I magnify my ministry,
    14 if somehow I might move to jealousy my fellow countrymen and save some of them. 15 For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?

    Paul looks to God’s accepting of the Jews at verse 15. Now at verse 16, Paul begins to help us understand the union of Jews and Gentiles into one using the example of “baking dough” and an “olive tree” in Romans 11:16, 17:

    16 If the first piece of dough is holy, the lump is also; and if the root is holy, the branches are too.
    17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive, were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the rich root of the olive tree,

    This is tremendous as it reveals God’s plan even more! Verse 16 is saying “the first piece of dough” is Israel, the “lump” are the Gentiles. Verse 17 is saying the the “wild olive” is the Gentiles, who have been grafted in to grow from the “rich root of the olive tree, which is Israel. Through this example is the union of Gentiles and Jews into one!

    Paul now move to warn the Gentiles not to become prideful by the current situation. Romans 11:18:

    18 do not be arrogant toward the branches; but if you are arrogant, remember that it is not you who supports the root, but the root supports you.

    Speaking in fleshly terms, Paul is warning Gentiles (the branches), not to be arrogant towards Jews (the root), because, it is because of the Jews failure that Gentiles have obtained salvation!

    We have seen this in church history where Gentile persecute the Jews because of the crucifixion, and it is their ignorance of the scriptures they do this.

    In Part 8 The rest of Romans 11 sums it up!
    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. janxharris

    janxharris Veteran

    United Kingdom
    Forgive me, but I am finding it difficult to know exactly where you are going with this.

    Even so, you write well and I look forward to part 8.
  3. ebedmelech

    ebedmelech My dog Micah in the pic Supporter

    I believe that is because you hold to the "two peoples of God" concept. However I don't hold to that view. I believe there's only one people of God, which is all that will be saved.

    This is the "Israel of God" spiritually". Part 8 will address that also.
  4. janxharris

    janxharris Veteran

    United Kingdom
    I think I believe there is only one people of God but that the prophecies concerning the Jews and the land are literal. The gentiles are grafted in and we become heirs to the promises too.

    So what, in your view, is the significance of 1948?
  5. ebedmelech

    ebedmelech My dog Micah in the pic Supporter

    It is not significant as I read the scripture. The Jews were captive when Ezekiel prophesied...and was not Israel restored?

    Does not Ezra and Nehemiah prove Israel was restored?

    The problem is those who hold the futurist view neglect the restoration of Israel as it certainly was restored when Christ came. However in rejecting Christ, Israel incurred God's wrath again which led to the destruction of Jerusalem and Rome's dispersion of the Jews.
  6. janxharris

    janxharris Veteran

    United Kingdom
    You are a pretorist?
  7. ebedmelech

    ebedmelech My dog Micah in the pic Supporter

    If I had to categorize my view it would be "partial pretorist". However my concern is what is the truth of scripture.

    After being saved in 1987 I was initially taught the "dispensational view" of eschatology. As I saw problems in that and had questions, I continued to study.

    "Pretorist" meaning past, I don't believe all things are past (as full pretorism does).

    *I hold to the second coming of Christ in the future.

    *I do not hold that the temple will be rebuilt or that temple sacrifice will ever occur. The church is that temple, a spiritual temple being built by all believers. We in the church, in serving Christ are spiritual sacrifices as Romans 12:1, 2 states.

    *I hold that Matthew 24 speaks to Christ coming in judgement of Jerusalem/Israel and Matthew 25 speaks to the second coming.

    *I hold Revelation to be speaking of Jerusalem's destruction as well as the second coming of Christ.

    *I hold the millennial reign of Christ to be happening right now. Christ reign began when He was given all authority, as Matthew 28:18 states.

    If you would like, you may PM me with any question you have about my view.