Has God Rejected Israel?
This is a question that seems to be floating around in some churches and Christian circles. When I heard this question I immediately thought about what the Word of God says and said no. But can you believe there are people of the faith who believe Israel is no longer the promised and chosen people of God? I find this interesting since the Bible tells us otherwise.
Where would people hear this? Or why would they think this? This sounds like a doctrine of the devil. Someone who teaches that Israel has been rejected has been deceived and does not know our God is faithful.
Sure the people of Israel have been called “a stiff necked people” in the Old Testament, an unbelieving population, a population that has been continually persecuted throughout the centuries, a people who have not followed the commandments of God even when the Lord continually judged and punished them when they were disobedient. But haven’t you been this same type of person? Disobedient to what God has commanded in his Word and choosing your own path many times. We cannot say this is the reason God has rejected Israel. The bible does, however, tell us reasons why someone who follows the Law cannot see Jesus in the scriptures. They become spiritually blind and cannot understand it.
But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which vail is done away in Christ. 15 But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. 16 Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away. 2 Corinthians 3:14-16 KJV
People in the Jewish faith continue to read only the Law which was given to Moses in the Old Testament. When someone does this they become spiritually blinded. This does not only happen to the Jews but also to the church if they only focus on reading the Old Testament. One might think, “but how, if they received the spirit of God?” This is a mystery but it can happen. It is written and whether one believes it or not it will happen to anyone who decides to only read the Old Testament.
* The Royal Law *
We can tell you first hand that we have been in churches that focus only on the Old Testament and because of this type of preaching and study of the Bible they start to become spiritually blinded. They cannot see that Jesus has fulfilled the requirements of the Law and begin to teach they should follow the Ten Commandments to please God. But the truth, instead, is now we have been called to follow the Royal Law. What is the Royal Law? Let us look at what James wrote.
If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well: But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors. James 2:8-9 KJV
James, who we now know is the half brother of the Lord Jesus, mentioned the Royal Law. This law is none other than the two commandments Jesus left for everyone to follow.
Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. Matthew 22:37 KJV
And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Matthew 22:39 KJV
The Royal Law is to love God and to love thy neighbor as thyself. If the church is teaching to follow and do the commandments in the Old Testament then we discredit the work Jesus did on the cross. This is a reason why one would start to become spiritually blinded. The Lord Jesus is totally against this and tells the church to not be something you aren’t. The Law of Moses was only meant for the Jews and it was for a specific reason. It pointed their sin and because they could not fulfill the requirements of the law they needed a savior.
In the Book of Revelation in a letter to the church of Smyrna Jesus tells us what he thinks of the church trying to be a Jew.
I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan. Revelation 2:9 KJV
There are people who call themselves Jews and they are not. They want to be, probably because they believe if they become a Jew they can be one of the chosen or part of the family. But if we remember gentiles have been grafted into the family of God. We are already part of God’s family through Jesus. We would not need to pretend we are a Jew to be accepted. As we read in the scripture above Jesus calls a church like this a “synagogue of satan.”
Through the lack of faith in God in the Old Testament, gentiles, [this means you and I], we were allowed to be part of the family. We were adopted and inserted into the family tree. The Apostle Paul taught the Romans about the mystery of how all of Israel would be saved from their blindness.
* Spiritual Blindness *
For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. Romans 11:25 KJV
The blindness we see to Jesus in Israel is on purpose. It was a process God did so the world could also be saved. He wanted Israel to be jealous of their salvation. He loves you and I as well as Israel. He has not forgotten about them. There is a time when they will all be saved and this is when Israel will no longer be blind to see Jesus.
And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: 27 For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins. Romans 11:26-27 KJV
God is a man of his word. If he said it it will be accomplished. The Jews were set aside because of their unbelief but you were once an unbeliever as well and now through mercy you are saved. This applies to the Jews as well. It may seem like God has rejected them but they will be saved in the end times. He promised them and they will not be abandoned. Amen!
So we must remember if we read in the Old Testament we must also read in the New Testament to balance our study. We learn from lessons in the Old Testament and we understand grace and the work after the cross in the New Testament. This was also something written it the bible.
Now all these things happened unto them for examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come. 1 Corinthians 10:11 KJV
All the things that happened to Israel are examples that we should learn from including the part about unbelief. God does not want to loose any of us but we know many will be lost because of the influence of satan in this world. Praise God we know there will be a time when he will not be in our lives any longer. He will be removed permanently. Hallelujah!