Home > Antisemitism, Israel, Israel and the Church > Replacement Theology – Antisemitism Refuted- AGAIN

Replacement Theology – Antisemitism Refuted- AGAIN

Dr. Tony Garland

A careful reading of both testaments shows that God’s grace will surpass the disobedience of Israel such that He will turn the nation back to himself. Hence the many restoration passages which teach just this—that Israel’s rejection is neither total nor continuing (e.g., Deut. 30:1-6; Eze. 31:31-37; 36:16-37:14; Amos 9:11-15; Mat 23:39; Luke 21:24; Rom. 11:11,25-32).

The Apostle Paul indicates that unbelieving Israel retains it’s elect status as a nation before God (Rom. 9:3-5; 11:28-29). Notice especially Romans 11:28-29:

‘Concerning the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but concerning the election they are beloved for the sake of the fathers. For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.’

Paul, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, tells us that unbelieving Jews—those who were his most serious opposition, who are enemies concerning the gospel are nevertheless still ‘elect’ (chosen by God) and are to be beloved by Scripturally-informed Christians for the sake of the fathers, the promises made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob which form the root of the olive tree and by which Gentile wild olive branches find our salvation. How can this be? Paul explains that the gifts and calling (of Israel) by God are irrevocable. Even in unbelief, Israel as a nation remains elect—chosen and called by God for His purposes in history. Notice too that this national election differs from individual election (Rom. 11:7) which is the sole means by which any person, regardless of ethnicity is saved.

Regarding use of the term anti-Semitism, as most recognize, the current meaning of the term does not relate strictly to its etymology: “1. Hostility toward or prejudice against Jews or Judaism. 2. Discrimination against Jews.” [1] ; “(1882) : hostility toward or discrimination against Jews as a religious, ethnic, or racial group.” [2] This is akin to the use of the term ‘Jew’ to denote any descendant of Jacob and not just those descending from Judah. Thus, one should not infer that because the term includes the root word for Semite that in modern usage it takes in all the descendants of Shem.

I do not dispute the numerous passages you cite which indicate judgment of the Jews due to their rejection of their own Messiah—you will see this if you choose to access my Revelation Course or companion commentary on Revelation 2:9 and 3:9. However, when the entire revelation of God is taken into account, the Scriptures clearly predict the eventual restoration of Paul’s ‘countrymen according to the flesh who are Israelites’—no less Israelites today in their opposition to God as when Paul penned Romans 9-11. Yet not the ‘Israel of God’—those believing Jews of the Church age who are joined with believing Gentiles as ‘one new man’ (Eph. 2:15)—the body of Christ in which Jew and Gentile, male and female, are one in Christ in regard to salvation yet without jettisoning ethnic or sexual distinctions (Gal. 3:28 cf. Eph. 5:22-28).

Upholding the Scriptural teaching of the continued election of unbelieving Israel in the plan of God in no way divides the unity of the body of Christ which is composed only of believers, regardless of ethnicity. The body of Christ reflects individual election which differs from the national election of Israel—a point which Paul is careful to distinguish (compare Romans 11:7,28).

Regarding Israel’s treatment of her neighbors, history shows it to be much more humane, on the whole, than the reverse. Ask yourself this question: which of her surrounding nations support any form of democratic process in which Jews in that country may vote or hold political office? Which of her surrounding neighbors applauds her right to exist as a nation? Which of her surrounding neighbors has Israel refused to recognize? Even so, we readily admit that Israel is far from perfect, being made up of fallen men like every other nation.

I would also encourage you to undertake a careful study in the Old Testament concerning God’s treatment of those who opposed Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob even during situations when these men behaved in ungodly ways (e.g., Gen. 12:11-20; 20:2-7). You will soon encounter the initially disturbing reality that the reliability of God’s promises does not hinge upon the character of the recipient: God continues to bless Abraham and his descendants (the line of promise) even in times when they manipulate, lie, and otherwise seemingly thwart what God seeks to accomplish through them. As you grow in your knowledge of the Scriptures and your own foibles, you will no doubt come to see this Scriptural reality as a great blessing because you will eventually realize that His promises to you are no different—in the same way that you repeatedly fail Him, He still stands by what He has said and accomplishes His purposes in you (and me). This is how we need to see today’s (mostly) unbelieving Israel in the plan of God. God’s grace will outlast Israel’s present disobedience in that He will eventually turn them to Himself (Rom. 11:26-27). As when Paul wrote, the majority in Israel continue to reject Messiah Jesus. Yet during this period in history, we as Christians are to love these Christ-rejectors on account of the Abrahamic covenant and the promises which flow from it—which are the basis of the New Covenant by which we ourselves are saved. It is simply inconsistent for us to smugly insist upon the certainty of our salvation based on the New Covenant while simultaneously holding to the idea that Israel has stumbled so severely as to fall in the plan of God (Rom. 11:11). The same grace which extended toward us while we were yet enemies of God (Rom. 5:10) will also uphold Israel which is now largely in unbelief and an enemy of the gospel (Rom. 11:15)!

 

Source: http://www.bibleprophecyblog.com/2011/04/is-todays-israel-still-chosen-by-god.html

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  1. June 9, 2015 at 9:33 am

    Also see Jeremiah 51:5 “For neither Israel nor Judah has been forsaken by his God, the Lord of hosts, although their land is full of guilt before the Holy One of Israel.” If faithful Christians who were “grafted in” are part of the Bride of Christ, then Israel, the original root-stock of the tree to which Christians are grafted, certainly still has a place – and has not been forever forsaken. As Tim LaHaye wrote: “separating Israel and the Church is one of the major keys to rightly understanding Bible prophecy.” The faithful few from both groups will be saved in the end. I review this issue in detail in my recent prophecy books like End Times and 2019, and   Antichrist 2016-2019

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