Who Is Israel?

Ephesians 2:12-13 “That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.”

When speaking to Christians; Paul said:

Galatians 6:15-16 “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.”

Why would Paul call Christians “the Israel of God” if it was only meant to be the name of a nation?

In all walks of life, Christian and non-Christian alike, people have the assumed belief that the chosen people of God has to be the physical nation of Israel located in the Middle East. The truth is, Israel is the name of God’s chosen people, however, the problem lies in WHO can claim the name Israel? The Scriptures actually touch on this topic quite openly.

Since this is a name given by God to Jacob in …

Genesis 32:28 “And he said, Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel: for as a prince hast thou power with God and with men, and hast prevailed.”

We need to dig into Scripture to see why God took time to do such a thing.

Turns out, Jacob’s perfect repentance of the sin he had committed against his brother Esau, as well as making the final decision that we are all called to wrestle with in life, by professing the Lord thy God as His eternal guide, allowed him this blessing. His transgression was forgiven as God promises all of us, and since his sin was so perfectly purged, he could now endure God’s presence as well as the eternal name of Israel, as given by the very lips of God. In other words, those that repent and seek Christ as Lord will also carry the name of Israel throughout eternity.

However, to make it easier to understand for those that may disagree with me on this, and for those that seek a thus saith the Lord, what does the Bible say about the name, Israel? Will it always be for the physical nation of Israel? Or, are there certain stipulations laid out in Scripture that must be met before the name can be claimed? And can the name ever be taken away from a people if they step out of God’s will? Amazing as it may seem to some, prophecy touches on this very topic.

In Genesis 49:10 we read the prophetic statement that,

Genesis 49:10 “The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.”

Shiloh, or as we call Him today, “Jesus,” came as prophesied and all the people did in fact gather to Him as both Scripture and history record. In Hosea 2:23 the Lord states,

Hosea 2:23 “And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God.”

At one time the Gentiles were not considered the people of God. In fact, they were considered unclean by the Jewish nation. But after Jesus worked, died, resurrected, and ascended, three and a half years later probation ended for the Jewish nation as Daniel the prophet predicted would happen 490 years after Jerusalem was allowed to be rebuilt in 457BC. Peter then received the vision of the sheet coming down three times which he later translates and explains to Cornelius in Acts 10:28. He explains that the Lord was declaring the three Gentile men knocking on his door at that moment were now cleansed and to be considered God’s people and worthy of the Holy Spirit.

When Jesus first arrived and started to share His Gospel truth, most of the leaders of the physical nation of Israel rejected Him, and as we can see today, that same physical nation still rejects Him, yet we find Jesus has been accepted by what that same nation still calls Gentiles in every other nation. His Gospel message has spread worldwide just as He prophesied it would.

The prophetic statement declared in Genesis and Hosea is also repeated by Jesus Christ Himself in Matthew 21:43 when He is speaking to the Jews. He clearly says,

Matthew 21:43 “Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.”

The fact the fruits have now grown into a global forest of believers proves this prophetic statement fulfilled and absolute truth.

Later in Acts 13:46 we find the prophecy regarding having the Kingdom of God taken from “physical Israel” straightforwardly fulfilled when Paul and Barnabas are being ridiculed and reproached by the Jews one day with blasphemous statements as they try to share the Gospel message. So, on that fateful day, Paul and Barnabas turned to the Jews that were speaking out and said,

Acts 13:46 “Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.”

In Romans 2:28-29 we learn the following,

Romans 2:28-29 “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: 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.”

A few chapters later in Romans 9:6-8 it says that,

Romans 9:6-8 “Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called. That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed.”

In other words, you are not guaranteed Heaven simply because you are born into a Jewish family. Peering into this reality at its base elements, a family is nothing more than a flesh generated unit. It is not a spiritual entity claiming spiritual things. It’s just a family name. As Christians, we know that the “flesh” has no claim on Christ, nor can it ever lay claim because it is said in,

John 4:24 “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”

Romans 8:5 “For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.”

Galatians 5:17 “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.”

Only those that understand, profess, and believe the promise can be called heirs and citizens of Israel.

Galatians 3:29 “And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

What is this promise you ask?

Galatians 3:14 “That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”

And finally,

Galatians 3:26-29 “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

It was believed by physical Israel that to be Israel was a birthright and beyond the grasp of all those outside their camp. Yet here we see Paul clearly stating that all that claim Christ Lord are of Abraham’s seed and heirs according to the promise. Paul tells them it doesn’t matter if you’re a Jew or a Greek, bond or free, or even male or female. He was explicit so as to erase all doubt regarding the age-old tradition brought on by the Pharisees regarding their assumed God given heavenly ethnicity. Paul plainly says if you follow CHRIST, then you are of Abraham’s seed. According to the Pharisee of old, to be of Abraham’s seed simply means you are ISRAEL.

Notice what Jesus Himself said to the Jews one day 2000 year ago …

It’s recorded in,

Mark 12:1-12 “And he began to speak unto them by parables. A certain man planted a vineyard, and set an hedge about it, and digged a place for the winefat, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country. And at the season he sent to the husbandmen a servant, that he might receive from the husbandmen of the fruit of the vineyard. And they caught him, and beat him, and sent him away empty. And again he sent unto them another servant; and at him they cast stones, and wounded him in the head, and sent him away shamefully handled. And again he sent another; and him they killed, and many others; beating some, and killing some. Having yet therefore one son, his wellbeloved, he sent him also last unto them, saying, They will reverence my son. But those husbandmen said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and the inheritance shall be ours. And they took him, and killed him, and cast him out of the vineyard. What shall therefore the lord of the vineyard do? he will come and destroy the husbandmen, and will give the vineyard unto others. And have ye not read this scripture; The stone which the builders rejected is become the head of the corner: This was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes? And they sought to lay hold on him, but feared the people: for they knew that he had spoken the parable against them: and they left him, and went their way.”

Jesus clearly stated the Jews would lose their favored nation status, but not because of the way they ridiculed, harmed and even killed the prophets of old when the Lord sent them to share His Truth with them and all men. For if it was for this reason, Jesus the Son of God would never have come to them to share the Gospel message in the first place. They were about to kill Him, even though this was just a thought running through their minds for now. The sad thing here is these men of the cloth understood the parable Jesus just shared because the Scriptures clearly say here that THEY KNEW He was speaking of them. They knew the certain man in the parable was God, they knew the vineyard was the Jewish nation, they knew the hedge was the Law of God and their keeping it was the reason God protected them, they knew the tower was the Temple, they knew husbandmen were themselves, they knew the servants were the prophets they harmed and killed in the past and they knew the far country was Heaven. They even knew when Messiah would come, He would seek the fruits of their labors for Him. But they had no idea the Son of God was standing before them at that moment. Had they not feared the people, they would have taken Him outside the vineyard at that time and killed Him.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I am not saying all Jews are headed for hell. The Jews, like any other nation as Paul confirmed earlier, have the same gift of salvation offered to them completely free of charge because of what Jesus did on Calvary.

If the Jewish nation, or any other people accept Jesus Christ as Lord, then they too will be found in the City of Heaven for all eternity. 2 Timothy 2:10 says to all the world that,

2 Timothy 2:10 “Therefore I endure all things for the elect’s sakes, that they may also obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.”

Truth is, even Christians can lose the name “Israel” if they deny the Lord as did the Jews of old. For it is written in.

Hebrews 10:26-27 “For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.”

Truth be known, if a Jew or a Christian denies God and steps out of His will, they will stand judged worthy of Hellfire. If it was a guarantee that all you needed to do was claim to be in the nation of Israel, why would it be said,

Romans 9:27 “Esaias also crieth concerning Israel, Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved:”

For those that take no stock in all the Scriptures I just shared, I say, sheer common sense grants us the obvious answer here. I ask, how can the physical Jewish nation be considered the chosen people of God when they openly deny His only begotten Son Jesus Christ as Messiah and go directly against God’s Biblical definition of Israel? You cannot be Israel and deny Jesus Christ at the same time any more than you can stand at midnight while declaring it to be noon.

Ever wonder why Satan would want people to believe those that deny Jesus Christ are the chosen Israel of today? Look around! All the prophecies that speak of Israel have been twisted out of context causing people to watch the land of Israel for signs instead of watching the true Israel and how the prophecies are actually being fulfilled. This smokescreen has literal billions ignoring the true fulfilments for the manufactured false ones so as to be unready when Christ finally does return. As many are aware, the true Israel of God are persecuted and ridiculed for their Christian faith by the most powerful nations on earth. Laws are drafted against our Bibles, our speech, and our faith. Yet the physical Israel that deny God’s only begotten Son are protected and honored by these very same nations. Even the governments of this world have been used by the enemy of souls to convince many to look in the wrong direction.

Now that we know who the true Israel is, that being the Christian believer of course, what does the Lord command His people will do throughout their generations?

Exodus 31:13 “Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you.”

Matthew 3:9-10 “And think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.”

One last thing …

Jeremiah 31:35-37 “Thus saith the LORD, which giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; The LORD of hosts is his name: If those ordinances depart from before me, saith the LORD, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me for ever. Thus saith the LORD; If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the LORD.”

The prophet Jeremiah declared if the Jewish people were to turn their backs on God, He would remove them as a “nation before me for ever.” They did turn their backs on Him when He sent them His only begotten Son. Plus, David saw in Psalms a similar fate for the Jews that ignored the obvious hand of God upon them those 40 years.

Psalm 95:7-11 “For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. To day if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my work. Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known my ways: Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest.”

Many claim to this day that the Christians are by no means the “replacement of the Jews” as the chosen people. But the Bible actually confirms in writing that they are.

It was prophesied:

Genesis 49:10 “The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.”

Jeremiah 17:3 “O my mountain in the field, I will give thy substance and all thy treasures to the spoil, and thy high places for sin, throughout all thy borders.”

Jeremiah 17:4 “And thou, even thyself, shalt discontinue from thine heritage that I gave thee; and I will cause thee to serve thine enemies in the land which thou knowest not: for ye have kindled a fire in mine anger, which shall burn for ever.”

Jeremiah 31:36 “If those ordinances depart from before me, saith the LORD, then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me for ever.”

Jeremiah 31:37 “Thus saith the LORD; If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done, saith the LORD.”

Jesus then repeated:

Matthew 21:43 “Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.”

Apostles later confirmed:

Acts 13:46 “Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.”

Acts 15:14-17 “Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for his name. And to this agree the words of the prophets; as it is written, After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up: That the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the Lord, who doeth all these things.”

It also said long ago in,

Amos 9:11-12 “In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old: That they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name, saith the LORD that doeth this.”

Most fail to realize that it was prophesied long ago that those “outside the camp” would become worthy to seek the Lord. Even Jesus touched on this in His parable regarding the wedding feast when he said the following in,

Matthew 22:1-14 “And Jesus answered and spake unto them again by parables, and said, The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son, And sent forth his servants to call them that were bidden to the wedding: and they would not come. Again, he sent forth other servants, saying, Tell them which are bidden, Behold, I have prepared my dinner: my oxen and my fatlings are killed, and all things are ready: come unto the marriage. But they made light of it, and went their ways, one to his farm, another to his merchandise: And the remnant took his servants, and entreated them spitefully, and slew them. But when the king heard thereof, he was wroth: and he sent forth his armies, and destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city. Then saith he to his servants, The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden were not worthy. Go ye therefore into the highways, and as many as ye shall find, bid to the marriage. So those servants went out into the highways, and gathered together all as many as they found, both bad and good: and the wedding was furnished with guests. And when the king came in to see the guests, he saw there a man which had not on a wedding garment: And he saith unto him, Friend, how camest thou in hither not having a wedding garment? And he was speechless. Then said the king to the servants, Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few are chosen.”

Many Jews claim Jesus never spoke of the Jews as worthy of replacement. When this parable is shared, they mock it. However, there is yet another parable Jesus shares and the Word clearly says the Jews KNEW He was talking about them. It says this I,

Luke 20:9-19 “Then began he to speak to the people this parable; A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time. And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty. And again he sent another servant: and they beat him also, and entreated him shamefully, and sent him away empty. And again he sent a third: and they wounded him also, and cast him out. Then said the lord of the vineyard, What shall I do? I will send my beloved son: it may be they will reverence him when they see him. But when the husbandmen saw him, they reasoned among themselves, saying, This is the heir: come, let us kill him, that the inheritance may be ours. So they cast him out of the vineyard, and killed him. What therefore shall the lord of the vineyard do unto them? He shall come and destroy these husbandmen, and shall give the vineyard to others. And when they heard it, they said, God forbid. And he beheld them, and said, What is this then that is written, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner? Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. And the chief priests and the scribes the same hour sought to lay hands on him; and they feared the people: for they perceived that he had spoken this parable against them.”

It was also prophesied:

Hosea 1:9; 5:5-6; 8:2-4; 9:15-17 “Then said God, Call his name Loammi: for ye are not my people, and I will not be your God. And the pride of Israel doth testify to his face: therefore shall Israel and Ephraim fall in their iniquity; Judah also shall fall with them. They shall go with their flocks and with their herds to seek the LORD; but they shall not find himhe hath withdrawn himself from them. Israel shall cry unto me, My God, we know thee. Israel hath cast off the thing that is good: the enemy shall pursue him. They have set up kings, but not by me: they have made princes, and I knew it not: of their silver and their gold have they made them idols, that they may be cut off. All their wickedness is in Gilgal: for there I hated them: for the wickedness of their doings I will drive them out of mine house, I will love them no more: all their princes are revolters. Ephraim is smitten, their root is dried up, they shall bear no fruit: yea, though they bring forth, yet will I slay even the beloved fruit of their womb. My God will cast them away, because they did not hearken unto him: and they shall be wanderers among the nations.

Additional verses confirming replacement theology:

As time goes by and the studies continue, I am sure I will come across more and more statements in the Word confirming replacement theology to be not only doctrinally sound, but prophetic as well.

1 Samuel 2:30 “Wherefore the LORD God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the LORD saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.”

Romans 9:30-31 “What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith. But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness.”

In other words, shall we now have a problem that the unchosen Gentiles that became chosen and the chosen Israelites chose to become unchosen by blatant apostasy?

Romans 11:1-2 “I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying,”

Paul makes a good point here. So many Jews say replacement theology is a lie. But as Paul intimates in this passage, he never left his Jewish roots. The only difference between him and the lost Jews is that he chose to believe Jesus. So, in actuality, God never replaced them, they did that all on their own.

1 John 2:23 “Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.”

So many to this day declare the Jews are the chosen people of God because they uplift the Father in Heaven and obey Him, but it is plainly stated here by John that those that deny the Son of God do not have the Father in their hearts. In fact, the previous verse that leads up to this one says in,

1 John 2:22 “Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.”

In context this is speaking of the “many antichrists” that will come upon the world in the last days and as we see here, according to the apostle John, the Jews are in fact in that number.

1 Corinthians 12:3 “Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.”

Look to the Jews who declare themselves to be the chosen people of God today as well as throughout their long history. Yet if you ever read the Babylonian Talmud you would know how disgusting they speak of Jesus Christ. I will not repeat their blasphemous words here as many of them are vile and quite vulgar but the lesser of their evils is when in fact they declare Jesus “accursed” which then boldly declares they cannot possibly be the chosen people of God. For to deny the Son of God is to declare the Father just as evil because Jesus and His Father are one in agreement.

This page was copied and pasted by permission from remnantofgod.org

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