Category Archives: Israel and the Church

God’s Covenants: The Obsolete and the Everlasting

[…] It is this “everlasting covenant of promise” that the prophets see as established permanently with the nation in the coming day of the Lord at the end of the last tribulation. And where Israel, as pertaining to the ‘natural branches’ is concerned, it will indeed yet be established WITH THEM at the ‘set time’ (Ps 102:13). But through the revelation of the mystery of the gospel, it is now seen that the power and spirit of that coming day has come already in unexpected advance of the “last day” (the day upon which all Jewish expectation was fixed). So while the ‘first’ covenant of the law is indeed obsolete, nothing of that former covenant can annul the sure confirmation of the oath that came 400 years earlier. It is that unconditional promise that the prophets have in mind when they speak of an ‘everlasting or new covenant’ to be established with the surviving remnant of the last tribulation, the ‘natural branches’. And though the church has gained advance access to the grace and glories of that everlasting / new covenant, the church of this age does not exhaust its fulfillment, since it is yet to be established with those with whom it was originally made. […] Continue reading

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One People. Two Entities? (Followup)

[…] If there’s anything I’m sure of, it is that the early apostolic church moved with great urgency under the shadow of an imminent destruction of Jerusalem, which they clearly associated with the onset of a final unequaled time of distress that they expected to immediately precede Christ’s return. This context and framework of the mystery is all but lost. Even where it is in some general sense expected, the church is typically absented from the scene, and hence from the responsibility. Jacob’s trouble becomes ‘Jacob’s problem’. Yet there it is: After millennia of comparative silence, Jerusalem is a modern cup of trembling threatening to “literalize” the language of the prophets. Only now, the church has moved so far away from the covenant and apocalyptic perspecitive and expectation of the early Jewish church that we’ve lost the perspective and with it the urgency as well. And not least is Israel’s relationship to how we understand the nature and context of the gospel itself, and there too lies great work to be done in these days of critical restoration. […] Continue reading

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One People. Two Entities?

[…] But though I agree with Kaiser that there is only one regenerate people of God, the elect of all ages, I also believe that it is not only permissible, but necessary to speak of Israel as the ‘people of God’, or ‘the chosen people’, even now in their present state of unbelief. Even the individual Jew in his unbelief and set to perish apart from gospel regeneration, is nonetheless part of a nation that is UNDER both judgment and promise of a sure and certain destiny. That’s unique to the Jew alone. Even in unbelief, he is part of a body, a nation, a distinct ‘entity’ if you will, that abides in a unique covenant relationship. Though Israel’s covenant does not guarantee the personal salvation of the individual, it does in fact guarantee covenant severity ‘UNTIL’ the end, and covenant mercy ‘AT’ the end. So in that sense, then yes, for the moment only, there are two peoples of God, but not in the dispensational sense. When ‘all Israel’ shall be saved, the two collapse into one forever.[…] Continue reading

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Dispensationalism & More on “One or Two Peoples of God?”

… With the new revelation has come a new language. But this is where we need to exercise caution. We learn from the doctrine of Christ’s pre-existence that for something to be newly revealed does not mean that it has come newly into existence.; This is an important distinction when we are speaking of Christ and the church. Much has come to light in the gospel that had real existence before the dispensation of the fuller revelation. This applies as much to the ‘body of Christ’ as to Christ Himself and the unity of persons in the Godhead. … Continue reading

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The Importance of Chronology in Prophetic Fulfillment

[…] much is conditional and contingent on prayer and obedience of the faithful, but there is a view that so ‘conditionalizes’ the prophetic scripture that some have even proposed to remove the future necessity for Israel’s experience of ‘great tribulation’ through united corporate prayer. However, Jesus said that heaven and earth would sooner pass away before “all these things” should fail of certain fulfillment. And while the believing remnant in the Land are instructed to pray that their flight ‘be not in winter or on the Sabbath’, it would be futile to pray that their flight ‘be not’. So believing that not all prophecy is conditional (see Dan 11:36; “that which is determined shall be done”), I only meant to say that if this unequaled tribulation is indeed future and without precedent or equal (please review in context Jer 30:7; Dan 12:1; Mt 24:21), then it is inexorably sure, regardless of our ability to fathom it. […] Continue reading

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