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Are Gentiles Christians "spiritual Jews?"

Discussion in 'Christian Theology Forum' started by setfree, Mar 4, 2009.

  1. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    In order to determine if Gentile Christians are "spiritual Jews," let's first examine some terminology. We need to know what makes a person a Jew so that we can understand what a "spiritual Jew" is. Here are several definitions from Easton's Bible Dictionary: "Hebrew - a name applied to the Israelites in Scripture only by one who is a foreigner (Gen. 39:14, 17; 41:12, etc.), or by the Israelites when they speak of themselves to foreigners (40:15; Ex. 1:19), or when spoken of an contrasted with other peoples (Gen. 43:32; Ex. 1:3, 7, 15; Deut. 15:12). In the New Testament there is the same contrast between Hebrews and foreigners (Acts 6:1; Phil. 3:5)." (Easton's Bible Dictionary , emphasis added) "Israel - the name conferred on Jacob after the great prayer-struggle at Peniel (Gen. 32:28), because "as a prince he had power with God and prevailed." (See JACOB .) This is the common name given to Jacob's descendants. The whole people of the twelve tribes are called "Israelites," the "children of Israel" (Josh. 3:17; 7:25; Judg. 8:27; Jer. 3:21), and the "house of Israel" (Ex. 16:31; 40:38). This name Israel is sometimes used emphatically for the true Israel (Ps. 73:1: Isa. 45:17; 49:3; John 1:47; Rom. 9:6; 11:26). After the death of Saul the ten tribes arrogated to themselves this name, as if they were the whole nation (2 Sam. 2:9, 10, 17, 28; 3:10, 17; 19:40-43), and the kings of the ten tribes were called "kings of Israel," while the kings of the two tribes were called "kings of Judah." After the Exile the name Israel was assumed as designating the entire nation." (Easton's Bible Dictionary , emphasis added) "Jew - the name derived from the patriarch Judah, at first given to one belonging to the tribe of Judah or to the separate kingdom of Judah (2 Kings 16:6; 25:25; Jer. 32:12; 38:19; 40:11; 41:3), in contradistinction from those belonging to the kingdom of the ten tribes, who were called Israelites. During the Captivity, and after the Restoration, the name, however, was extended to all the Hebrew nation without distinction (Esther 3:6, 10; Dan. 3:8, 12; Ezra 4:12; 5:1, 5). Originally this people were called Hebrews (Gen. 39:14; 40:15; Ex. 2:7; 3:18; 5:3; 1 Sam. 4:6, 9, etc.), but after the Exile this name fell into disuse. But Paul was styled a Hebrew (2 Cor. 11:22; Phil. 3:5). ... There are three names used in the New Testament to designate this people, (1.) Jews, as regards their nationality, to distinguish them from Gentiles. (2.) Hebrews, with regard to their language and education, to distinguish them from Hellenists, i.e., Jews who spoke the Greek language. (3.) Israelites, as respects their sacred privileges as the chosen people of God." (Easton's Bible Dictionary , emphasis added) According to the above definitions, the people of the 12 tribes (i.e. the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob), are collectively referred to in the New Testament as "Jews," "Hebrews," and "Israelites." Next we will look at a short family history of the Jewish people....
     
  2. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    Recall that Abraham had several sons, including Ishmael and Isaac (Genesis 16:16, 17:18-21, 25:1-6). Isaac had two sons named Esau and Jacob (Genesis 25:21-26). Jacob was renamed "Israel" by God (Genesis 32:28). Jacob/Israel had 12 sons (Genesis 35:22-26), who were the 12 patriarchs of Israel (Acts 7:8). One of these patriarchs was Judah (Genesis 35:22-23), from whom the word "Jew" is derived (see the definition for "Jew" above). Eventually the word "Jew" referred to all of the Israelites (i.e. the 12 tribes who were descended from Jacob - see the definitions above). So a "Jew" is a physical descendant of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, which is why God is sometimes referred to as "the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob" (see Matthew 22:32, Luke 13:28, 20:37, Acts 3:13, 7:32, for example). Jewish-ness is based on a person's physical ancestry, and therefore a Jew can never become a non-Jew. A "Gentile" is a person who is not a Jew. Gentile-ness is based on a person's physical ancestry, and therefore a Gentile can never become a non-Gentile. Gentiles who converted to Judaism are never called "Jews" in the Bible, but instead they are called "converts" or "proselytes" (see Matthew 23:15, Acts 2:10-11, 6:5, 13:43, for example). In the New Testament, the word "Israel" most often refers to the land or the people of Israel as a whole (made up of Jews, whether saved or unsaved), but we will see that it sometimes refers specifically to saved Jews (the "true Israel," also called "the Israel of God"). We will also see that the word "Israel" never refers to the Church, which is made up of saved Jews and saved Gentiles. Now, notice that a spiritual person is under the control of the Spirit: "This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man's judgment: "For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?" But we have the mind of Christ. Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly--mere infants in Christ." (1 Corinthians 2:13-3:1) "Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted." (Galatians 6:1) In the first passage above, Paul said that a person who does not have the Spirit (i.e. an unsaved person) cannot understand the spiritual truths in the Bible. A spiritual person can understand these truths. But then Paul said that the Corinthians were worldly and were mere infants in Christ, and he could not address them as "spiritual." In other words, they were Christians, but they were not yet under the control of the Spirit to any great degree. In the second passage above, Paul spoke of restoring Christians who have sinned. Paul said, "you who are spiritual" should restore a Christian (who is not yet as spiritual) who has sinned. The implication is that being "spiritual" essentially means that we are mature enough in Christ that we are being led by and controlled by the Spirit. If a Jewish person is saved and is led by the Spirit, then he is a spiritual Jew. If a Gentile person is saved and is led by the Spirit, then he is a spiritual Gentile.
     
  3. savedbygrace57

    savedbygrace57 New Member

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    Yes, true believers of any ethnic group is the Israel of God..
     
  4. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    Part of the confusion about Gentiles becoming "spiritual Jews" comes from several passages in the Bible which refer to Christians as "children of Abraham": "Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham's offspring --not only to those who are of the law but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all." (Romans 4:16) "Understand, then, that those who believe are children of Abraham. The Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: "All nations will be blessed through you." So those who have faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith." (Galatians 3:7-9) "If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise." (Galatians 3:29) These passages tell us that whether we are Jews or Gentiles by birth, if we have faith in Jesus then we are considered to be children of Abraham and heirs according to the promise. But recall that Abraham's first child was Ishmael, and according to various scholars as well as both Jewish and Arab tradition, Ishmael was the ancestor of much of the Arab world (e.g. Wikipedia and Jewish Virtual Library ). Notice that Ishmael was a child of Abraham, yet Ishmael was not a Jew. In fact, the Ishmaelites were enemies of the Jews (e.g. Psalms 83:1-6). Similarly, Isaac's first child was Esau, and Esau was the father of the Edomites who were enemies of the Jews (Genesis 25:21-26, 29-30, 36:1, 36:43, Numbers 20:14-21, 1 Samuel 14:47, 1 Kings 11:15-16, 2 Kings 8:21-22, Psalms 83:1-6, etc.). So being a child of Abraham does not make a person Jewish, but instead it is being a child of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob that makes a person Jewish (as we saw above). If the Bible said that Gentile Christians are considered to be children of Jacob then we would have reason to be called "spiritual Jews," because only the descendants of Jacob are Jews. But the Bible never calls us "children of Jacob," and the Bible never says that anyone is a "spiritual Jew," and in fact we will see that the Bible specifically says that Gentile Christians share in (not "take over") the Jews' spiritual blessings. We Gentile Christians have inherited the spiritual promises of Abraham by faith, but we have not inherited the physical, material, or national promises that God made to Abraham and his physical descendants through Isaac and Jacob (i.e. the Jews). For example, here's what a prominent Bible commentary says about this: "The fact that believers in this Church Age are identified with Abraham and God's covenant with him does not mean that the physical and temporal promises to Abraham and his physical descendants are either spiritualized or abrogated." (The Bible Knowledge Commentary, Walvoord and Zuck, Dallas Theological Seminary, p.454) "[Gentile Christians] become Abraham's spiritual seed. They inherit the promise of justification by faith as Paul explained earlier (cf. Gal. 3:6-9). To suggest, as amillenarians do, that Gentile believers inherit the national promises given to the believing Jewish remnant - that the church thus supplants Israel or is the "new Israel" - is to read into these verses what is not there." (The Bible Knowledge Commentary, Walvoord and Zuck, Dallas Theological Seminary, p.600) In other words, Gentile Christians have inherited the spiritual promises made to Abraham, but they have not inherited the physical and national promises that God made to Abraham's physical descendants. Despite what some well-meaning people believe, the Church has not "replaced" Israel, and the Church is not the "new Israel," and the Church is not a "continuation" of Israel, and Gentile Christians are not "spiritual Jews."
     
  5. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    Here's another passage which has confused some people: "A man is not a Jew if he is only one outwardly, nor is circumcision merely outward and physical. No, a man is a Jew if he is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code." (Romans 2:28-29) In order to properly understand any passage of Scripture, it is important to look at the context and determine to whom the passage is addressed. If we go back eleven verses and look at Romans 2:17, we can see exactly to whom Paul was speaking: "Now you, if you call yourself a Jew; if you rely on the law and brag about your relationship to God" (Romans 2:17) From Romans 2:17 down into Romans chapter 3, Paul was speaking to Jews. He was not speaking to Gentiles or about Gentiles in any way. Paul was specifically speaking to Jews when he said, "A man is not a Jew if he is only one outwardly, ... a man is a Jew if he is one inwardly." In other words, Paul was saying that a true Jew is one who is not only Jewish outwardly (by birth), but one who is Jewish outwardly and has the inner circumcision of the heart through faith in Christ. Paul was speaking specifically to Jews, and he was distinguishing between saved Jews and unsaved Jews. None of this has any bearing on Gentiles.
     
  6. watchman

    watchman New Member

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    QUOTE (savedbygrace57 @ Mar 4 2009, 10:31 AM)
    Yes, true believers of any ethnic group is the Israel of God..
    Yes savedbygrace57, this is correct.Romans 2:28-29 28 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.Romans 10:12 For there is no difference between Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord is rich unto all that call upon his name.Romans 11:16-36 For if the firstfruit be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches.17 And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them, and with them partake of the root and fatness of the olive tree:18 Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.19 Thou wilt say then, the branches were broken off that I might be grafted in.20 Well: because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standeth by faith. Be not high minded but fear.21 For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.22 Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou shall also be cut off.23 And they also if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again.24 For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree that is wild by nature, and were grafted in contrary to nature into the good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural branched be grated into there own olive tree?Romans 12:5 So we being many, are one body in Christ, and every one member one of another.Galatians 3:28-29 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.29 And if you be Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.Galatians 6:15-16 15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature.16 And as many as walk according to this rule, peace upon them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.Ephesians 2:11-19 11 Wherefore remember, that ye being in times past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands.12 That at times past you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonweath of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:13 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.14 For He is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;15 Having abolished in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandment in ordinances; for to make in Himself of twain one new man, so making peace;16 And that He might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:17 And came and preached peace to you that were afar off, and to them that were nigh.18 For through Him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God.Ephesians 4:4-32 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as you are called in one hope of your calling;5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 One God and Father of us all, who is above all, and through us all, and in you all. We can clearly see that scripture teaches, the Jew and Gentile/Israel and the Church have become one new man. That there is only one Faith, and that we are all apart of the same body in Christ. That a Jew is not one that is a Jew outwardly, but a Jew is one that is one inwardly circumcised in the heart by the Spirit, regardless of blood line. Scripture tell us that believing Gentiles have been grafted into the good Olive Tree which is Israel, who's root is Christ, and whoever has been baptized into Christ, have become citizens of the true Israel of God with the saints, being seeds of Abraham, heirs according to the promise. We have not replaced Israel at all, but we are included with them in all the promises of God, being one with and equal to them, not separate from them in any way.
     
  7. Dunamite

    Dunamite New Member

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    Does it matter? It seems to me that it is irrelevant. We are what we are. Why should a label be important? To get into heaven you don't join a group but enjoy a relationship. This seems to me one of those "How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?" questions, which makes it a useless expenditure of energy when there is so much else to do.
     
  8. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    QUOTE (Dunamite @ Mar 4 2009, 12:56 PM)
    Does it matter? It seems to me that it is irrelevant. We are what we are. Why should a label be important? To get into heaven you don't join a group but enjoy a relationship. This seems to me one of those "How many angels can dance on the head of a pin?" questions, which makes it a useless expenditure of energy when there is so much else to do.
    It is important so we can understand the Word clearer.....Another source of confusion is when the New Testament seems to say that there is "no difference" between Jews and Gentiles: "That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, "Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame." For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile--the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, "Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."" (Romans 10:9-13) "The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body--whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free--and we were all given the one Spirit to drink." (1 Corinthians 12:12-13) "So the law was put in charge to lead us to Christ that we might be justified by faith. Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law. You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." (Galatians 3:24-28) "Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all." (Colossians 3:9-11) People sometimes interpret these passages to mean that all distinctions between Jews and Gentiles have been erased. But notice that in Romans 10:9-13 (above), Paul was saying that Jews and Gentiles are all saved and justified in exactly the same way. There is no difference in the way that Jews and Gentiles are saved. In 1 Corinthians 12:12-13 (above), Paul was saying that Jews and Gentiles (or "Greeks") all enter the body of Christ in exactly the same way. In Galatians 3:24-28 (above), Paul was saying that Jews and Gentiles all receive justification in exactly the same way. In Colossians 3:9-11 (above), Paul was saying that Jews and Gentiles grow in spiritual maturity in exactly the same way. In other words, Paul was saying that the principles of the Christian faith apply to every believer, whether we are Jews or Gentiles. However, notice that there are still differences between Jews and Gentiles, even in the body of Christ. For example, if Paul was teaching that all distinctions between Jews and Gentiles have been erased, then he was also teaching that all distinctions between male and female have been erased as well (see Galatians 3:24-28, above). Yet Paul himself taught that there are distinctions between male and female Christians (see 1 Corinthians 11:3-15, 14:34-35, Ephesians 5:22-33, Colossians 3:18-19, 1 Timothy 2:11-15, Titus 2:1-5). Furthermore, in most of the above passages Paul mentioned those who are slaves and those who are free. Notice that if Paul was teaching that all distinctions between Jews and Gentiles have been erased, then he was also teaching that all distinctions between slave and free have been erased. Yet in other passages Paul specifically taught that the distinctions between slave and free within the body of Christ continue to exist (see Ephesians 6:5-9, Colossians 3:22-4:1, 1 Timothy 6:1-2, Titus 2:9-10). Since there are definite distinctions between male and female and between slave and free within the body of Christ, this shows that in the above passages Paul was not trying to teach that all distinctions between Jews and Gentiles have been erased within the body of Christ. Again, the Bible does not teach that Gentile Christians are "spiritual Jews," and it also does not teach that the Church has replaced Israel. Of the 83 times that the word "Israel" appears in the NIV New Testament, only 3 of those passages (Romans 9:6, Romans 11:26, and Galatians 6:16) tend to be used by some people to prove that the Church is the "new Israel."
     
  9. Christina

    Christina New Member

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    We are in the age of the gentile ... Christ died to open salvation to All ... The only reason we have to distinguish who is whom is to understand Gods prophecies and whom they apply to as written in the Word for this reason he called certain People certain things. So understanding Gods terminology will help understand is Word ... Spiritual Israel is the Body of believers the true church made up all who believe and overcome .... In prophecy the Jews of today (today's literal Israel) are called Judah ..Only because its the largest tribe of the two that remained as a remnant to preserve the law .... The Christian nations are literally descendants of the ten lost tribes ...not spiritually this is written in Eze. and posted many, many places already on this Web site 70 A.D. the 10 northern tribes were scattered they went over the Caucasus Mountains into Scotland,Ireland, Britain across Europe and eventually came to America, Canada, Australia ect. in prophecy they are called often called Israel...or after Joseph's two sons Ephriam or Manasah ...... Judah (todayJews) may live in the land of Israel...but in prophecy they are not called Israel but Judah ... Israel in prophecy most often is referring to the ten scattered (lost) tribes .. Or the Christian church/nations of today ... All 12 tribes together are called the Whole house of Israel ... The Whole house of Israel is the body of believers (the true church) made up of Jew, Gentile, and Christian. It does not completely come into being until Christ returns and unites it at the present time it is divided into two sticks Eze. 37 .... 15The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying, 16Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim and for all the house of Israel his companions: 17And join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thine hand. 18And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not shew us what thou meanest by these? 19Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand. This is the Joining back together of the two sticks branches Israel and Judah (Jew and Christian/gentile) under one King Christ ..............The following verse clearly identify the time he is talking of When we have one King ... The king of Kings Lord of Lords... This is at Christ's return he rejoins both sticks/ Jew (Judah) Israel ( Christians ( Joseph and his sons) into one stick All Israel (Whole house of Israel)22And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all. 23Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwellingplaces, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God. God divorced Israel (10 lost/scattered tribes) for her sins not Judah .... So don't think this means he divorced today's true Judah (jews) Judah always kept the scepter and Joseph (with his sons) received the birth righthttp://reluctant-messenger.com/judahs_sceptre_103.htm
     
  10. Dunamite

    Dunamite New Member

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    I know that we should study scripture, but we should not waste time on inconsequential things when we should be expanding the kingdom. There is no test to get into Heaven. We don't need to know all of the answers. What we need to be able to do is to spread the message of love and hope. Academics will never win people to Christ, but they can confuse and distract believers, if we let them.Some discussions have no resolution. To engage in them is to waste your time. You say one thing. Someone says something slightly different. Before you know it you are splitting hairs which results in division. Where there was no division we create it. That does not make sense to me. If anything really depended on it, then I could see its purpose. But nothing does depend on knowing this, so it becomes a frivolous waste of time, IMO.
     
  11. Jordan

    Jordan Active Member

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    QUOTE (Dunamite @ Mar 4 2009, 02:17 PM)
    I know that we should study scripture, but we should not waste time on inconsequential things when we should be expanding the kingdom. There is no test to get into Heaven. We don't need to know all of the answers. What we need to be able to do is to spread the message of love and hope. Academics will never win people to Christ, but they can confuse and distract believers, if we let them.Some discussions have no resolution. To engage in them is to waste your time. You say one thing. Someone says something slightly different. Before you know it you are splitting hairs which results in division. Where there was no division we create it. That does not make sense to me. If anything really depended on it, then I could see its purpose. But nothing does depend on knowing this, so it becomes a frivolous waste of time, IMO.
    Nothing in God's Words is a waste of time. And nothing in God's Words is inconsequential. And yes there is tests according to God's Words... reminds me of John 14:15.One more thing Christ came to divide. (Luke 12:51-53)
     
  12. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    First let's look at Romans 9:3-6: "For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, those of my own race, the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption as sons; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of Christ, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen. It is not as though God's word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel." (Romans 9:3-6) Notice that Romans 9:6 (above) says, "For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel." Some people use this verse as evidence that the Church has replaced Israel, but that's not what this verse says. In fact, many people who believe that the Church has replaced Israel do not use this verse to prove their view because they recognize that that's not what this verse means. In Romans 9:3-6 (above), notice that Paul was speaking about his own race, the people of Israel. He was not talking about Gentiles in any way. The Jews believed that they were automatically going to heaven because they were the people of God, but what Paul was saying in Romans 9:6 (above) is that not all who are physically descended from Israel are part of the true Israel, the Israel of God. This is the same argument that Paul made several chapters earlier when he said that a true Jew is one who is not only Jewish outwardly (by birth), but one who is Jewish outwardly and has the inner circumcision of the heart through faith in Christ (as we saw in Romans 2:28-29, above). That's what makes a person a member of the true Israel, the Israel of God. Paul was specifically speaking about Jews, and he was distinguishing between saved Jews and unsaved Jews. None of this has any bearing on Gentile Christians, and this passage does not teach that the Church has "replaced" Israel.
     
  13. Christina

    Christina New Member

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  14. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    QUOTE (Christina @ Mar 4 2009, 04:13 PM)
    This is a subject that has been discussed at nauseam here go read a thread on it tim _from -PA has some great stuffHeres four links plus a link to a book I already gave you ...educate yourself on the topice before you start trying tio interpt it.http://www.christianityboard.com/index.php?showtopic=9109http://www.christianityboard.com/index.php?showtopic=9158http://www.christianityboard.com/index.php?showtopic=9356http://www.christianityboard.com/index.php?showtopic=6147
    Don't want it from books ....I want it from the Bible.Now let's look at Romans 11:25-28: "I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: "The deliverer will come from Zion; he will turn godlessness away from Jacob. And this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins." As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs" (Romans 11:25-28) Notice that Romans 11:26 (above) says, "And so all Israel will be saved." Since the Church is made up of people who are saved, some people believe that Paul must have been referring to the Church in Romans 11:26 (above), and therefore the Church must be the "new Israel." However, it's always important to look at the context of a passage. Notice that Paul said that Israel has experienced a "hardening in part," meaning that part of Israel is hardened to the Gospel, and therefore the Church and Israel cannot be one and the same (because by definition all of the Church believes the Gospel). In the above passage, Paul also said that God will turn godlessness away from Jacob, which is another reference to the nation of Israel (it is not a reference to the Church). Then Paul said that Israel is loved on account of the patriarchs, which again is a reference to the nation of Israel, not to the Church. Paul was making the very same argument that we have seen him make several times before. He was saying that part of Israel is hardened against the Gospel, but the other part of Israel is the true Israel, the Israel of God. None of this has any bearing on Gentile Christians, and this passage does not teach that the Church has "replaced" Israel. Again, Romans 9:6 (above) and 11:26 (above) are not used as proof by everyone who believes that the Church has replaced Israel. Of the 83 times that the word "Israel" appears in the NIV New Testament, only Galatians 6:16 seems to be consistently used as proof by everyone who equates the Church with Israel. Here is Galatians 6:16 in context: "Those who want to make a good impression outwardly are trying to compel you to be circumcised. The only reason they do this is to avoid being persecuted for the cross of Christ. Not even those who are circumcised obey the law, yet they want you to be circumcised that they may boast about your flesh. May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is a new creation. Peace and mercy to all who follow this rule, even to the Israel of God." (Galatians 6:12-16) In the above passage, Galatians 6:16 ("the Israel of God") is the main verse which is often used as proof that the Church has "replaced" Israel. But notice that Galatians 6:16 does not say that the Church has replaced Israel. It does not say that "the Israel of God" is the Church. This means that certain well-meaning people are reading into this passage something which is not actually there. And yet this is the main verse which is used as proof that the Church has "replaced" Israel!
     
  15. watchman

    watchman New Member

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    QUOTE (setfree @ Mar 4 2009, 07:28 PM)
    In the above passage, Galatians 6:16 ("the Israel of God") is the main verse which is often used as proof that the Church has "replaced" Israel. But notice that Galatians 6:16 does not say that the Church has replaced Israel. It does not say that "the Israel of God" is the Church. This means that certain well-meaning people are reading into this passage something which is not actually there. And yet this is the main verse which is used as proof that the Church has "replaced" Israel!
    First of all no where does it say the Church has replaced Israel it says we have become one with Israel, and the main text that teaches this is not Galatians 6:16 (although the Israel of God in this passage is the church). The main text that teaches us that the Church and Israel have become one is Romans 11:16-24 and primarily Ephesians 2:11-19.
     
  16. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    Part of the confusion in Galatians 6:16 (above) is that the NIV and other versions of the Bible have translated the Greek word kai ("and") as "even," which makes the passage look like it says: "even to the Israel of God." However, that is not the normal meaning of the Greek word kai, as we can see in a literal translation of Galatians 6:15-16: "for in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation; and [kai] as many as by this rule do walk -- peace upon them, and [kai] kindness, and [kai] on the Israel of God!" (Galatians 6:15-16, Young's Literal Translation ) Notice that the Greek word kai occurs three times in Galatians 6:16. In the first two occurrences, the NIV has translated kai as "and" (which is its normal meaning), but in the third occurrence of kai in this verse the NIV has changed the translation to "even." This inconsistency in translation has caused some people to misunderstand Paul's meaning. In order to understand what Paul was saying here, let's look at the context. First of all, notice the situation which Paul was addressing: "the Book of Galatians is concerned with Gentiles who were attempting to attain justification and/or sanctification through the law. The ones deceiving them were the Judaizers, who were Jews demanding adherence to the Law of Moses." (Israelology: The Missing Link in Systematic Theology, Arnold Fruchtenbaum, p.758, emphasis added) Paul was writing to Gentile Christians, and he was describing certain Jews who were trying to force the Gentiles to be circumcised. Paul said that circumcision has no value for a Christian, and then he pronounced a blessing of peace and kindness on all who follow this rule of not becoming circumcised. Paul was specifically speaking to Gentiles, and in fact only the Gentiles could follow this rule of not becoming circumcised because the Jewish Christian men had already been circumcised on the eighth day of life according to the Jewish law (Leviticus 12:2-3, Luke 1:59, 2:21, and Philippians 3:2-5, for example). Notice that in Galatians 6:16 (above), Paul was speaking a blessing of peace and kindness upon two groups of people: "neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision, ... and as many as by this rule do walk -- peace upon them, and kindness" (Galatians 6:15-16a, YLT) Here Paul pronounced a blessing on Gentile Christians who follow this rule by not becoming circumcised. "and on the Israel of God" (Galatians 6:16b, YLT) Here Paul pronounced that same blessing on Jewish Christians (i.e. "the Israel of God" or the "true Israel," as we have already seen in several other passages). So in Galatians 6:16 (above), Paul pronounced a blessing of peace and kindness on two groups of people: Saved Gentiles and saved Jews. It is the saved Gentiles who are told to obey this rule of not trying to follow the Law of Moses, and it is the saved Jews who are "the Israel of God." What this all boils down to is that the New Testament does not teach that the Church has replaced Israel. In fact, the New Testament often makes a distinction between Israel and the Church.
     
  17. watchman

    watchman New Member

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    QUOTE (setfree @ Mar 4 2009, 09:35 PM)
    What this all boils down to is that the New Testament does not teach that the Church has replaced Israel. In fact, the New Testament often makes a distinction between Israel and the Church.
    You are right the church has not replaced Israel and the Bible does not say it has , however you are wrong to believe their is a distinction the Church and Israel have become one in Christ this is the clear teaching of scripture.I have come to conclude two things about you.#1 Truth is irrelevant all you care about is you dispensational indoctrination.#2 I do not think you even read others posts.
     
  18. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    QUOTE (watchman @ Mar 4 2009, 09:18 PM)
    You are right the church has not replaced Israel and the Bible does not say it has , however you are wrong to believe their is a distinction the Church and Israel have become one in Christ this is the clear teaching of scripture.I have come to conclude two things about you.#1 Truth is irrelevant all you care about is you dispensational indoctrination.#2 I do not think you even read others posts.
    Wrong on both counts! I read all post! And truth is the utmost importance to me....YOu do not know me watchman! From where I have been and how far I have come in my beliefs! I am very cautious of mans interpretation! "For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, those of my own race, the people of Israel." (Romans 9:3-4) The apostle Paul was a Christian, and therefore he was a member of the Church. Yet he described the people of Israel, those of his own race, as being largely unsaved. Since the word "Israel" is referring to the unsaved people of Israel, then there is obviously a distinction between "Israel" and "the Church." "What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; but Israel, who pursued a law of righteousness, has not attained it." (Romans 9:30-31) Paul said that the Gentiles had obtained righteousness by faith, and therefore these Gentiles were in the Church. But he said that Israel had not attained righteousness. Again, the word "Israel" is referring to the unsaved people of Israel, so there is obviously a distinction between "Israel" and "the Church." "Brothers, my heart's desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved." (Romans 10:1) Paul's desire was for Israel to be saved. The word "Israelites" is referring to the unsaved people of Israel, so once again we can see that there is a clear distinction between "Israel" and "the Church." "But not all the Israelites accepted the good news. For Isaiah says, "Lord, who has believed our message?"" (Romans 10:16) Paul implied that some Israelites had accepted the Good News (and were therefore members of the Church), but not all of the Israelites had accepted the Good News. The word "Israelites" is partially referring to the unsaved people of Israel, so once again we can see that there is a clear distinction between "Israel" and "the Church." "Again I ask: Did they stumble so as to fall beyond recovery? Not at all! Rather, because of their transgression, salvation has come to the Gentiles to make Israel envious." (Romans 11:11) Paul said that salvation has come to the Gentiles in order to make Israel envious. Why? Because the majority of the people of Israel have not received salvation. Once again, the word "Israel" is referring to the unsaved people of Israel, so there is obviously a distinction between "Israel" and "the Church." "I am talking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch as I am the apostle to the Gentiles, I make much of my ministry in the hope that I may somehow arouse my own people to envy and save some of them." (Romans 11:13-14) Paul was talking to saved Gentiles (who were therefore in the Church), and he was distinguishing them from his own people (the people of Israel) whom he hoped would receive salvation. Once again, Paul was referring to the unsaved people of Israel, so there is a clear distinction between "Israel" and "the Church." "Do not cause anyone to stumble, whether Jews, Greeks or the church of God" (1 Corinthians 10:32) Paul specifically distinguished between three groups of people here: Unsaved Jews, unsaved Gentiles, and the Church. Once again, the Jews in this verse are the unsaved people of Israel, so there is obviously a distinction between "Israel" and "the Church." The above passages are examples where the New Testament distinguishes between unbelieving Israel and the Church.
     
  19. watchman

    watchman New Member

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    QUOTE (setfree @ Mar 4 2009, 10:25 PM)
    Wrong on both counts! I read all post! And truth is the utmost importance to me....YOu do not know me watchman! From where I have been and how far I have come in my beliefs! I am very cautious of mans interpretation!
    Just read what the Bible say on the subject. Ephesians 2:11-19 11 Wherefore remember, that ye being in times past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands.12 That at times past you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonweath of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:13 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.14 For He is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;15 Having abolished in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandment in ordinances; for to make in Himself of twain one new man, so making peace;16 And that He might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:17 And came and preached peace to you that were afar off, and to them that were nigh.18 For through Him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God.All who believe on Christ has become citizen of Israel with the ''Jewish'' saints.QUOTE (setfree @ Mar 4 2009, 10:28 PM)
    The above passages are examples where the New Testament distinguishes between unbelieving Israel and the Church.
    You almost have, just grasp this.....unbelieving ''Israel'' is not Israel, all believers Jewish or Gentile, that is the Israel of God.Romans 9:6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:
     
  20. setfree

    setfree New Member

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    12 That at times past you were without Christ, being aliens from the commonweath of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:....This is a spiritual promise of coming to Christ by faith.The New Testament also provides a number of examples where saved Jews are distinguished from saved Gentiles within the Church: "I ask then: Did God reject his people? By no means! I am an Israelite myself, a descendant of Abraham, from the tribe of Benjamin. God did not reject his people, whom he foreknew." (Romans 11:1-2) The apostle Paul was a Christian, and therefore he was in the Church. But he was also an Israelite. As a saved Israelite, Paul was a member of the "true Israel," which he referred to as "the Israel of God" (see Galatians 6:16). Paul said that God did not totally reject Israel, so once again he was making a distinction between Israel and the Church. The Church has not "replaced" Israel. "They were pleased to do it, and indeed they owe it to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in the Jews' spiritual blessings, they owe it to the Jews to share with them their material blessings." (Romans 15:27) Paul specifically pointed out that Gentile Christians share in the Jews' spiritual blessings. We Gentile Christians have inherited the spiritual promises of Abraham by faith, but we have not inherited the physical, material, or national promises that God made to Abraham and his physical descendants (the Jews) in the line of Isaac and Jacob. "Greet Priscilla and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus. They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful to them." (Romans 16:3-4) Paul made a specific mention of "the churches of the Gentiles." Again we can see that Paul made distinctions between Gentiles and Jews within the body of Christ. He never referred to Gentile Christians as "spiritual Jews," and he never referred to the Church as the "new Israel," or the "continuation" of Israel, or the "replacement" of Israel, etc. "When Peter came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he was clearly in the wrong. Before certain men came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles [saved Gentiles]. But when they arrived, he began to draw back and separate himself from the Gentiles because he was afraid of those who belonged to the circumcision group. The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy, so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabas was led astray. When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter in front of them all, "You are a Jew [a saved Jew], yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew. How is it, then, that you force Gentiles [saved Gentiles] to follow Jewish customs?" (Galatians 2:11-14) The apostle Peter, a Jewish Christian, used to eat with Gentile Christians. But he began to draw away from them so that he wouldn't receive criticism from other Jews for associating with Gentiles. Notice that Peter did not defend himself by making the argument that saved Gentiles are "spiritual Jews" (meaning that he should be free to associate with his fellow "Jews"). Notice that he also did not make the argument that saved Gentiles are part of the "new Israel" (so he should be free to associate with his fellow "Israelites"). Instead, in the minds of the apostles and the early Christians there was a clear distinction between Jews and Gentiles, even within the body of Christ. Peter was wrong to separate himself from Gentile Christians in order to appease certain Jews, but it shows that he did not try to argue that the Gentile Christians had become Jews in any way, whether spiritual or otherwise. "This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus." (Ephesians 3:6) This passage says that Gentile Christians are heirs together with Israel and sharers together with Israel in the promise in Christ Jesus. It does not say that Gentile Christians become Israel. Once again we can see that Paul distinguished between Gentiles and Jews within the body of Christ. The "true Israel" (the "Israel of God") is one part of the Church, and the saved Gentiles are the other part of the Church. They are sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus, which shows that the Church has not "replaced" Israel or "taken over" the promises from Israel. "Jesus, who is called Justus, also sends greetings. These are the only Jews among my fellow workers for the kingdom of God, and they have proved a comfort to me. Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings." (Colossians 4:11-12) Paul was writing to the church at Colosse, which was a Gentile church in Asia Minor. Notice that Paul said that certain Christians were his fellow Jews, and then he said that Epaphras was one of the Colossians' fellow Gentiles. Paul was making a specific distinction between Christians who were Gentiles and Christians who were Jews. I posted Scriptural examples where Israel is distinguished from the Church, and we have seen examples where there is a distinction between Jews and Gentiles within the Church. In addition, there are entire books (or portions of books) in the New Testament which are specifically addressed to Jews or to Gentiles within the Church.
     
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