DID GOD GIVE UP ON ISRAEL? 09.07.18
Tree of Life (TLV) Translation of the Bible. Copyright © 2015 by The Messianic Jewish Family Bible Society.
Ryan Lambert, FFOZ, “Getting To the Heart of Replacement Theology,” Apr. 24, 2017;
Did God give up on Israel? Even a brief study of Scriptures on this topic makes it very clear what God’s intentions always were for His people, and that He never underwent a change of mind/heart, or altered His plans. Even this brief study makes it hard to understand how leaders who were considered to be men of God devised a theology built around the erroneous concept of “Replacement Theology.” Yet there are those who continue to believe that since the Jews did not choose to believe in Messiah, and had not adequately followed the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob precisely, the Gentiles, having become the majority believers, increased in number, formed the “church,” and thus replaced the Jews. Jews choosing to believe in Messiah would be acceptable, could join the Gentile “Church,” abandoning all Jewishness, and become a “Christians.”
“Replacement theology is a Christian theological idea that says that the church has replaced ethnic Israel as God’s chosen people. The church has widely embraced this concept for most of Christian history. In recent generations, many Christians have come to see that replacement theology is wrong and that God’s promises to Israel are eternal” (Lambert, Apr.24,2017 FFOZ). “God is not a man who lies, or a son of man who changes his mind! Does He speak and then not do it, or promise and not fulfill it?” (Num.23:19). God is not fickle; nor is He a liar.
There are more places in God’s Word that verify His intentions towards Israel than can be quoted here; however, some critical passages will be incorporated in our discussion. “For God will save Zion, and rebuild the cities of Judah. Then they will dwell there and possess it. The children of His servants will inherit it and those who love His Name will dwell there” (Ps.69:36,37).
As many times as the Israelites disobeyed, worshipping pagan gods, etc., and God warned, pleaded, and disciplined/punished them, yet He came back with a promise to regather, restore, and bring them into a New Covenant which would set things right between themselves and Himself, giving them new hearts so that they would choose to be obedient. “‘For I will take you from the nations, gather you out of all the countries and bring you back to your own land. Then I will sprinkle clean water on you and you will be clean from all your uncleanness and from all your idols. Moreover I will give you a new heart. I will put a new spirit within you. I will remove the stony heart from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Ruach within you. Then I will cause you to walk in My laws, so you will keep My rulings and do them. Then you will live in the land that I gave to your fathers. You will be My people and I will be your God” (Ezek.36:24-28). Now that does not sound like a God who just gave up on His people.
For an even more distinct and determined declaration: “Only if this fixed order departs from before Me”—it is a declaration of Adonai—“then also might Israel’s offspring cease from being a nation before Me—for all time.” Thus says Adonai: “Only if heaven above can be measured and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, then also I will cast off the offspring of Israel” (Jeremiah 31:35,36). To assist in the understanding of these two passages, let’s look at the New Living Translation (which is not my preference; however, on occasions calling for easier understanding, I do find it helpful), which neatly re-packages in one concise statement: “I am as likely to reject my people Israel as I am to abolish the laws of nature!” I haven’t been able to find a statement of greater clarity which totally settles the matter, once and for all. Add to this: “This is what the Lord says: “Just as the heavens cannot be measured and the foundations of the earth cannot be explored, so I will not consider casting them away for the evil they have done. I, the Lord, have spoken!”” (Jer.31:37). Yahweh gives Jeremiah the ultimate confirmation of His unwavering, and permanent intentions.
“The day is coming,” says the Lord, “when all Jerusalem will be rebuilt for me, from the Tower of Hananel to the Corner Gate. A measuring line will be stretched out over the hill of Gareb and across to Goah. And the entire area—including the graveyard and ash dump in the valley, and all the fields out to the Kidron Valley on the east as far as the Horse Gate—will be holy to the Lord. The city will never again be captured or destroyed” (Jer. 31:38-40). Yahweh speaks of a time to come when there will be no remaining arguments about what constitutes Jerusalem – no more threats of splitting up the land – all strife and division, warring, and rejection of Him, will come to an end: “See, I will gather them out of all the countries, where I have driven them in My anger, My fury, and great wrath, and I will bring them back to this place and cause them to dwell securely. They will be My people, and I will be their God. I will give them one heart and one way, so they may fear Me forever; for their good and for their children after them. I will make an everlasting covenant with them: I will never turn away from doing good for them. I will put My fear in their hearts, so that they will not depart from Me. “Yes, I will delight in doing good for them, and with all My heart and all My soul I will in truth plant them in this land.” For thus says Adonai: “Just as I have brought all this great evil on this people, so I will bring on them all the good that I have promised them” (Jer.32:37-42). This time will be fully achieved at Messiah’s return, when He comes to rule and reign in the Millennium, and not before; but all that has been destined for the land of Israel will become theirs without any further dispute. The borders will be finalized.
“Salvation is from the Jews” (John 4:22), Yeshua Himself affirms, re-stating, as He always did, what was already given in Torah. When all is said and done, everything will come full circle, and what He began with, He will end with. Abraham was a man of faith selected by Yahweh to form a people unto Himself: “My heart’s desire is to make you into a great nation” (Gen.12:2), a people who would follow Him. From Genesis to Revelation, God’s intentions and promises remain unchanged: “and he showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God . . . with twelve gates, and above the gates twelve angels. On the gates were inscribed the names of the twelve tribes of Bnei-Yisrael” (Rev.21:10-12). “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End” (Rev.21:6); what He started in the beginning, He will complete in the end; what He promised to His people, will be done.
© 2017, updated 2018 by Verna Crowther. All rights reserved.
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