Biblical Realism in Relation to Israel

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Biblical Realism in Relation to Israel

In so-called “replacement theology,” which is very widespread, literal, ethnic, national Israel is no longer in view as Yahuwah’s covenant people, but rather the Church has fully and permanently replaced Israel. The Old Testament promises of restoration for Israel are “reinterpreted” by this theology so as to make the Church the recipient of all the blessings, while national Israel is left to receive only Yahuwah’s curses. Historically, the Catholic Church adopted this theology and made it widely popular. The Protestant reformer John Calvin perpetuated it among his own followers, and it is accepted today by many so-called “evangelicals” as well as (surprisingly!) Jehovah’ s Witnesses (contrary to the views of their own founder, C.T. Russell).

This replacement theology stands clearly invalidated by Romans 11 (and a mass of OT prophecy), where “Israel” means literal Israel and where Paul tells us that Yahuwah still has plans for them as a nation (vv. 22-32) because they are “beloved for the fathers’ sakes” (v. 28). The medieval Church adopted a method of “interpreting” Bible prophecies “allegorically.” This allegorism continues in much of the professing church today. Allegory means “saying something other.” It is a spiritual poison, because it nullifies the text of Scripture in the name of “interpretation.” False “allegorizing” is a sophisticated way of getting rid of truth one does not care to believe!

Long ago, people of Abrahamic faith realized that this method was untrue to Scripture and was destructive to belief in the Gospel of the Kingdom. The Gospel of the Kingdom includes vital information about the now hardened, blinded Israel (not the Church) who are “enemies of the Gospel” (Rom. 11:28). But collectively, in the future, they are going to turn to the Messiah. Meanwhile individual Jews can of course join the followers of Yahushua the Messiah and become members of the spiritual “circumcision” (Phil. 3:3; Gal. 6:16, the Israel of the spirit, not “the Israel of the flesh,” 1 Cor. 10:18).

Insisting on a biblical future for national Israel does not mean that we as Christians are supposed to be active politically to bring about whatever agenda we think the Bible supports. We believe the Church is not called to such activity but rather to be separate from the governments of this age.

Some speak of the “God of the Jews and the God of the Muslims” in such a way as to suggest that this is the same God. We object to such an identification. The God of the Jews, Yahuwah, is the true God of the universe. He is the God and Father of the Lord Yahushua. He is not Allah, the “God” of Islam. The Koran and the Bible are vastly different documents. The biblical Yahuwah calls Himself the God of Israel. False interpretations of the Bible are also capable of leading people away from Yahuwah who inspired this precious Book.

Though we believe in the restoration of national Israel, this does not mean that we see the current government of Israel as the Kingdom of Yahuwah. We do not believe that Zionism is the fulfillment of the biblical picture of Israel regathered in true faith. We do not believe that the Israelis do not make serious mistakes, as we all do. Israel has not yet been converted to the Christian Gospel of salvation, nor to the ethic of the New Testament. Paul calls them “enemies of the Gospel” (Rom. 11:28). They are a worldly government just like all other current governments. They have been brought back to their historic homeland in unbelief, just as our forefathers in the Abrahamic faith envisioned.

“I will surely gather all of you, Jacob; I will gather the remnant of Israel” (Micah 2:12)

But they needed to be there, in the land, in their unbelief in order for Yahuwah to deal with them in that land, just as His prophets foretold. Many prophecies concern events yet to occur in Israel. In the future, after the Great Tribulation, a collective national repentance and turning to the Messiah is to be expected. “Thus all Israel will be saved” (Rom. 11:26). Micah’s comment fits well: “I will surely gather all of you, Jacob; I will gather the remnant of Israel” (Mic. 2:12). Israel as a whole will be finally converted. This does not mean every Jew, just because he is a Jew. Everyone must choose to repent and accept Yahushua and his Gospel of the Kingdom (Acts 8:12).

The Bible contains no doctrine of inevitable, irresistible salvation, much less of double predestination. Every man must make a choice, and happily Yahuwah wants everyone to be saved (1 Tim. 2:4-5). The fact that not everyone will be saved is proof positive of our capacity to choose, that is, to exercise our divinely given “free will” to believe and obey the truth of the Gospel, in order to be saved (Heb. 5:9; John 3:36; 12:44-50).

This is a non-WLC article written by Bill Wachtel.

We have taken out from the original article all pagan names and titles of the Father and Son, and have replaced them with the original given names. Furthermore, we have restored in the Scriptures quoted the names of the Father and Son, as they were originally written by the inspired authors of the Bible. -WLC Team