Category: Douglas Krieger

33 YEARS: David’s Reign of 33 yrs. – Messiah’s 33-yr. “Cut Off” – Ezekiel’s 33 Years & the Holy City/District

33 YEARS: David’s Reign of 33 yrs. – Messiah’s 33-yr. “Cut Off” – Ezekiel’s 33 Years & the Holy City/District

King David Reigned Over the United Kingdom of Israel from Jerusalem for 33 Years
2 Samuel 5:5; 1 Kings 2:11; 1 Chronicles 29:27

The 33-year reign of King David from the City of David is found in 1 King 2:11: “The period that David reigned over Israel was forty years; seven years he reigned in Hebron, and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty-three years.”

This author, along with scores of other Biblical researchers, has determined that the ministry of Jesus was some 3.5 years or 1,260 days, or “time, times and half a time” as well as 42 months.  In Luke 3:23 it states: “Now Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age . . . “  

The reckoning below determines the number of feast days Jesus attended in the book of John. Jesus’ attendance at these feasts demands at least a 3.5-year ministry.  If we are to assume that Jesus commenced His earthly ministry at the baptism of John in John 1:29 and John 1:35 (2 separate days) on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement (10 Tishrei – the fall season) – then Jesus would have been participating in at least 4 separate Passovers, the Feast of Tabernacles and the Feast of Dedication/Hanukkah, as follows:

  • Day of Atonement – Jesus begins His “ministry” (10 Tishrei – Fall Season in 29 AD – Julian Calendar)

6 months to His 1st Passover…John 1:29, 35

  • Jesus’ First Passover – (14 Nisan – Spring Season in 30 AD)

12 months to 2nd Passover…John 2:13, 23

  • Jesus’ Second Passover – (14 Nisan – Spring Season in 31 AD)

12 months to 3rd Passover…John 5:1

  • Jesus’ Third Passover – (14 Nisan – Spring Season in 32 AD)

6 months to the Feast of Tabernacles…John 6:4

  • Jesus’ Feast of Tabernacles – (15 Tishrei – Fall Season in 32 AD)

70 days to the Feast of Dedication…John 7:2

  • Jesus’ Feast of Dedication – (24/25 Kislev – Winter of 32 AD)

110 days to Jesus’ 4th and Final Passover…John 10:22 [70 days (15 Tishrei to 24/25 Kislev) + 110 days (from 24/25 Kislev to 13/14 Nisan) = 180 days = 6 months]

Total:  6 months (29-30 AD) + 12 months (30-31 AD) + 12 months (31-32 AD) + 6 months (32 AD) + 6 months (70 days + 110 days = 180 days = 6 months – 32-33 AD) = 3 ½ years (or 42 months or 1,260 days or “3 1/2 days” seen as “years” according to Daniel’s 70th Weeks Vision)

In that Jesus’ ministry extended over a period of 3 ½ years or 42 months—naturally, we see various mathematical  fractals/resemblances seen in the 70th Week of Daniel in which the first half of the Week is 1,260 days or 42 months and the latter half of the Week is the same for a total of 1,260 days + 1,260 days = 2,520 days or 7 days/ 1 heptad (7s) or 7 Years = 1 Week. Even so we have the 42 months of Jesus’ ministry on earth with the “Passion Week” from Palm Sunday to Resurrection Sunday Morning being another expression of the Week – 3 1/2 days (Palm Sunday to Passover Preparation Day on Wednesday) and another 3 1/2 days (Passover until Resurrection Sunday morning or Nisan 10 to Nisan 17 – Sunday to Sunday).

There now is sufficient evidence that would indicate Jesus’ birth occurred in the spring, on Passover in 1 BC (See Footnote #1 at the end of this missive) – using “astronomical time” where 1 BC is a full 12-month year and 1 AD is a full 12-month year); therefore, at the end of 1 BC (December) Jesus is now 9 months of age (Spring to Winter = 9 months). Again, Jesus’ “ministry” commences at the age of 29, according to Luke 3:23: “Now Jesus Himself began His ministry at about thirty years of age” – yes, 29 years + 9 months of age on Tishrei 10, the Day of Atonement: “Behold the Lamb of God” –

Jesus continues in age from 1 AD through to the end of 32 AD and is now 9 months and 32 years of age at the end of 32 AD.  Since “Messiah the Prince” was “cut off” (crucified–Daniel 9:26) on Passover Preparation Day, 13 Nisan, in 33 AD that would have added an additional 3 months to His 32 years and 9 months of age – consequently, Jesus would have died at precisely 33 years of age – on His 33rd birthday in 33 AD, having lived an “earthly” life a full 32 years.

Jesus “owns” the “33” – both His age and the year of 33 AD.  Your local Free Mason Lodge does NOT own the “33” (just so you know – they tried to hijack it).

Thus, Jesus’ “33” and the year of 33 AD, as well as King David’s reign from Jerusalem from the City of David for 33 years comport with one another; along with the 33 years which elapsed between (see below) between the commencement of Judah’s Babylonian captivity in 607 BC unto 574 BC the year (574 BC) in which Ezekiel’s 25th year of Ezekiel’s personal captivity (or from 599 BC to 574 BC).

Furthermore, this “33” is not only seen in the Lion of the Tribe of Judah – KING DAVID and viewed in “David My Servant” in Ezekiel 34:23-24; 37:24-25 – but is also seen in the 33 years separating Judah’s Captivity commencing in 607 BC unto 574 BC (i.e., 607 – 574 = 33 years). Revelation 5:5: “And one of the elders saith unto me, Weep not: behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, hath prevailed to open the book, and to loose the seven seals thereof.

We are able to ascertain these 33 years – from Ezekiel 40:1: “In the twenty-fifth year of our captivity, at the beginning of the year, on the tenth day of the month, in the fourteenth year after the city (i.e., Jerusalem) was captured (i.e., fell), on the very same day the hand of the LORD was upon me; and He took me there . . . [and Ezekiel saw] . . . something like a city (the Holy District).

How’s that?  First of all, we must calculate that the fall of Jerusalem under the siege of King Nebuchadnezzar was in 587/586 BC – the siege having begun several years prior to this date cir. 589/588 BC – however, 587/586 BC are the traditional dates given for the 9th of AV – the Fall of Jerusalem.

The “25 years captivity” would then find itself 25 years less 14 years = 11 years would have to be “added on” to arrive at 25 years (14 years + 11 years = 25 years).  Therefore, we must count an additional 11 years from 587/586 BC (the Fall of Jerusalem) and arrive at 598/597 BC (587 BC + 11 years = 598 BC) – the beginning of, at least, Ezekiel’s personal captivity. 

This will give us the full “25 years captivity spoken of in Ezekiel 40:1 (“In the twenty-fifth year of our captivity . . . in the fourteenth year after the city was captured”).  Furthermore, those years (598/597 BC) would have been the year(s) in which Ezekiel was taken into his personal captivity—after the initial deportations of Daniel and the “lads” in 608/607 BC . . . for there were a number assaults by the Babylonians upon Judah (2 Kings 24:1 – Nebuchadnezzar’s first assault). 

Simply put – Ezekiel’s 25 years at their maximum end in the year 599/598 BC (599 less 25 years = 573/572 BC – the year Ezekiel saw the vision of the Holy City/District in the year 573 BC (some 25 years from his own captivity)–Ezekiel 40:1.

If Ezekiel’s Captivity commenced in the year 598/9 BC @ 25 years (14 years from the 587/586 date of the Fall of Jerusalem or 573 + 14 + 11 = 598/99 BC – then we would simply calculate an additional 8 years to arrive at 33 years or 598/9 + 8 years = 607 BC (the Fall of Jerusalem).  I realize that these dates have sundry months wherein some years are but 3 months and other years 10 months (but are considered a full year regardless of how many months of that particular year), etc. – consequently, they are “hard to follow” but result in the same total 33 years and/or “up to precisely 33—i.e., 32 full years—much like Jesus’ full 32 years up to 33 years of age.

All this to say that if the initial Babylonian Captivity of 70 years for Judah was from 608/607 BC unto the Decree of the Persia King Cyrus in 538/537 BC, we arrive at the full 70-year Captivity of Judah (See:  Jeremiah 29:10; 2 Kings 24:12-16; Daniel 1:1-3, 6; Ref. 2 Chron. 36:10; 2 Chron. 36:22-23; Ezra 1:1-4; Isa. 44:28); NOTE:  The “Hebrew Calendar vs. other calendars CONSTRICTS the dates; therefore, 605 BC is extended 2 years unto 608/607 BC). (Also:  Please note John Pratt’s complimentary accounting of the 70-year captivity @ Footnote #1)

Whereas, Ezekiel’s Vision of the Holy City/District took place 14 years after the Fall of Jerusalem in 587/586 BC less the 14 years unto 574/573 BC — then it is more than reasonable to conclude that 33 years transpired between 608/607 BC (i.e., the initial attack by then Viceroy Nebuchadnezzar against Judah) and 574/573 BC (the year that Ezekiel saw the vision of the Holy City/Holy District.  Put another way: 607 BC less 33 years = 574 BC) – it’s just that profoundly simple.

This would highlight God’s ultimate plan and purpose for the ages validated in both Testaments of the Earthly and Heavenly – multi-dimensional New Jerusalem!  Her vision as seen by Ezekiel includes the names of the 12 tribes of Israel—just as John, the Revelator’s vision of the Holy City (Ezekiel 48:30-35; Rev. 21:12) – with the addition in the Revelation of the “heavenly component” being the names of the 12 Apostles of the Lamb for a  total of “24” (12 Gates bearing the names of the 12 Tribes of Israel and 12  Foundations bearing the names of the 12 Apostles of the Lamb [Rev. 21:14]).

What I am suggesting is this:  KING David’s Rule and Reign from the City of David for 33 years expresses the UNITED KINGDOM OF DAVID wherein both Judah and Israel (Ephraim) were united under the “Tabernacle of David” (Acts 15:14-17; Amos 9:11-12).  That UNITED KINGDOM is prophetically brought back under DAVID MY SERVANT in Ezekiel 34:23-24; 37:24-25 via the “Covenant of Peace” between the House of Judah and the House of Israel – Judah and Ephraim – the Two Sticks in the Hand of the Lord. Now envisioned within the 33 years of Judah’s exile from 607 BC to 574 BC when Ezekiel saw the vision of the Holy City/District is yet another confirmation of the importance of the “33” in revealing divine truth.

Furthermore, the captivity of Judah in 608/607 BC had in view the ultimate manifestation of the New Jerusalem’s possession of the Earth “14 years” after the Fall of Jerusalem in 587 BC or in 574 BC.  The number set of “14” connotes KINGSHIP (See Matthew 1:17). 

These 33 years (viz., 607 BC to 574 BC) declare that the Holy City/District as seen by Ezekiel can only come about by the manifestation of the UNITED KINGDOM OF DAVID under DAVID MY SERVANT which is Messiah’s 33 years of age/33 AD.

This incredible composition of “33s” from David’s Rule and Reign over Judah and Israel from the City of David – through the Vision of the Holy City/District some 33 years after the initial captivity of Judah – unto Messiah’s 33 is simply breathtaking and demonstrates the absolute use of numbers to declare the Divine Intention – the very Person and Work of the Son of God/Son of Man!

In essence we are viewing 3 sets of 33 years.  A prophetic year is equal to 360 days; however, the rotation of the earth around our sun is 360 degrees (and that is a constant–her elliptical orbit).  If we multiply 33 years X 360 degrees, we arrive at 11,880° viewed as two sets of “18” or a total digit sum of 1+1+8+8 = 18 or 2 sets of 18 as in 18 + 18 = 36 which in turn reflects, once again, the ETERNAL GOD without beginning or ending as in 360° in a circle. 

The earthly expression of the Holy City has a base perimeter of 18,000 cubits (Ezk. 48:35) and the declaration: “And the name of the city from that day shall   be:  THE LORD IS THERE” (viz., YHWH Shammah). 

The cubed perimeter of the heavenly New Jerusalem is calculated as:  12,000 furlongs X 12 edges of a cube = 144,000 linear furlongs X 660 ft. (1 furlong = 660 ft.) = 95,040,000 feet–(Rev. 21:16) (Note:  The distance in miles between our Earth and Sun is approximately 95,040,000 miles.) and 95,040,000 ft. ÷ 5,280 ft. (1 mile) = 18,000 miles. 

Finally, although this is a “bit over the top” – the “12” clearly delineated dates recorded on 12 separate occasions in Ezekiel—excluding the calendric accounting of the Feast Days in Ezekiel 45:18-25 add to 154 years (e.g., 13 + 6 + 7 + 9 + 11 + 10 + 27 + 11 + 11 + 12 + 12 + 25 = 154) X 360 degrees in a year’s elliptical orbit around the sun = 55,440 X 2 = 110,880 or our two sets of “18” once again. However, 5040/2 = 2520 which reflects the Hebrew Sacred Cubit of 25.20 inches. Oddly enough when all the years, months, and days are summed up they total 289 – and, as factors we find that 2 X 8 X 9 = 144 (just sayin’).

Thus, Ezekiel’s 18,000 cubits is a fractal of the 18,000-mile heavenly New Jerusalem.  Furthermore, when we eliminate the zeroes, we arrive at 18 + 18 = 36 which is, as previously stated, a fractal of the 360° of a circle, without beginning or ending, or the expression of the Eternal God, Who through the Son of God/Son of Man – our Messiah, brings heaven to earth and earth into heaven in eternal relationship and administration:  THE NEW JERUSALEM – the Bride of Messiah!

Footnote #1 – https://www.johnpratt.com/items/docs/captivity.html )

THREE PART SERIES ON EZEKIEL 4:4-6 – RE: ISRAEL & JUDAH

THREE PART SERIES ON EZEKIEL 4:4-6 – RE: ISRAEL & JUDAH

PART 1 – THE 390 DAYS EZEKIEL RESTED ON HIS LEFT SIDE FOR ISRAEL & THE 40 DAYS ON HIS RIGHT SIDE FOR JUDAH – EZEKIEL 4:4-6. ITS POSSIBLE MEANING . . .

Ezekiel’s text was written around the Fall of Jerusalem in 586 B.C.—Judah was going into Babylonian captivity and had been since possibly 608 B.C. whereas the 10 Northern Tribes (Ephraim/Jezreel/Samaria/Israel) had undergone deportations by the Assyrians from as early as 745 B.C. unto at least 712 B.C. with the “Fall of Samaria” (Israel’s Northern Capital) cir. 722 B.C.

Ephraim-Israel had been “swallowed up…Now they are among the Nations…For they have gone up to Assyria” (Hosea 8:7-8).

Leviticus 26 cites four times that the Hebrews would suffer retribution and/or judgment some SEVEN TIMES whatever their judgment was; therefore, 390 days are spoken of as YEARS in Ezekiel 4 – consequently 7 X 390 years = 2,730 years; whereas 7 X 40 years is equal to 280 years.

Furthermore 390 + 40 is equal to 430 which 430 is akin to the 430 years between the Promise and the Passover (Exodus 12:40-41; Galatians 3:17). Thus, embedded in Israel and Judah’s judgment was the very PROMISE made of the “S”eed through Isaac, wherein the Almighty promised Isaac at age 52 that he would have a son—and, in fact at 60 years of age Isaac had both Esau and Jacob – there is/was 430 years between the time Isaac received the promise in Genesis 26 and the first Passover in Egypt – i.e., from 1875 B.C. unto 1445 B.C.

It is my conviction that the 2,730 years commenced with Ephraim-Israel at the “complete” Fall of Samaria in 722 B.C. (a date most scholars accord to the 10 Tribes’ demise – with mopping up actions among the Israelites by the Assyrians until the defeat of the Assyrians vs. Hezekiah at Jerusalem in 712 B.C.) – so that the DEMARCATION date of 712 B.C. marks the commencement of the 2,730 years of Ephraim’s retribution.

If so, God’s judgment/retribution upon Ephraim would persist from 712 B.C. unto 2018 AD or some 2,730 years; whereas Judah’s 280 years could/should date from 1002 B.C. unto 722 B.C. wherein 1 Kings 6:1 states that some 480 years elapsed from the Exodus/Passover in Egypt unto the fourth year of the reign of King Solomon – thus, 4 years of King Solomon’s reign and 33 years of David’s reign from the City of David (Jerusalem) – 1 Kings 2:11. David’s reign from Jerusalem commenced in the year 1002 B.C. – thus, 1002 B.C. less 280 years (for Judah) = 722 B.C. – these are the 280 years (40 days/years X 7 = 280 years for Judah) related to the account found in Ezekiel 4.

Judah and Israel are intrinsically united together, though separate. The years 712/722 B.C. are pivotal years for both Judah and Israel. Now, if indeed, the “fulfillment” of the 2,730 years is upon us (712 B.C. to 2018 A.D.) – give or take 3 months into the commencement of the religious calendar year on Nisan on the Hebrew Calendar – or March/April 2019 – then TIMES UP! This appears to be a most likely start of the final Week of Daniel’s 70th.

Will the Almighty bring together the Stick of Judah and the Stick of Ephraim in the latter days, bringing this to our attention (Ezekiel 37:15-28) prior to the Gog-Magog War (Ezekiel 38:1-23; 39:1-16)?

Are we at the PROPHETIC TIPPING POINT in God’s dealings with BOTH Israel and Judah? The 70th Week is upon us all…don’t kid yourself…all signs and prophetic calculations indicate we’re VERY close, if not there!

PART 2 -WHY DO “BIBLICAL YEARS” MAKE ONE WHOLE LOT OF “BIBLICAL SENSE?”

I am aware – keenly so – that the Septuagint Version (Hebrew to Greek) of the Hebrew Scriptures provides nearly 1,600 additional years to the genealogies of the patriarchs (Genesis 5 and 11) vs. the Masoretic Text (cir. 500 to 1000 AD) of the Hebrew Bible (aka Old Testament) – for example: Adam begat Seth at 260 years of age (Septuagint) vs. 130 years of age (Masoretic Text).

Most English versions are taken from the Masoretic text – ipso facto, our KJV (somewhat sacrosanct) was taken from the Genesis chronologies produced by the Masoretic text, and not from those chronologies produced by the Septuagint. Thus, the creation date of Adam was given as 4004 BC by Bishop James Ussher back in the 1600s from whence most of calculations are still determined . . . with the prevailing understanding that humanity was given some 6,000 years upon the earth prior to the 1,000-year Sabbath rest known as the Millennial Reign of the Son of David—yet future.

This possesses somewhat of a conundrum in that 4004 BC + 2019 AD is now at least 22 to 23 years beyond the 6000-year allotment. Furthermore, the 6,000 years appears “distorted” by the chronologies recorded in the Septuagint Version (cir. 280 BC to 125 BC) which adds 100 years to the “begetting” of Seth (viz., Adam begat Seth at age 130 years [Masoretic Text] vs. 230 years [Septuagint] – with a grand total of “additional years” found in the Septuagint around 1,600 years in the 21 patriarchs mentioned from Adam to Isaac.

S. Douglas Woodward’s fascinating new text, REBOOTING THE BIBLE, attempts to alter our exclusive reliance upon the chronologies found in the KJV/Masoretic vs. those highlighted in the Septuagint—claiming the chronologies were tampered with by “Jewish scholars” to obfuscate the Messiahship of Jesus (Preface to Woodward’s text). A somewhat exhaustive series of “researched comments” as to why the variance in the Septuagint/Masoretic chronologies is given in this article/commentary:https://hermeneutics.stackexchange.com/…/why-did-the-masore…

When all the dust clears, there seems to be reasonable justification that the configurations as to the BIBLICAL YEARS conveyed in the Masoretic version of the Hebrew Bible vs. those of the Septuagint is superior. My brevity cannot justify such a sweeping statement—it is only meant to convey a quick summary on my part at this time and a somewhat odious forecast that my brother’s new text, though interesting, does not merit a “reset” of the chronologies as found in the Septuagint juxtaposed to those favored in the Masoretic.

THE HEBREW SACRED CUBIT – 25.20 inches

In my text, SIGNS IN THE HEAVENS AND ON THE EARTH…MAN’S DAYS ARE NUMBERED AND HE IS MEASURED – I go into historic and Biblical details in proclaiming the dimensions of the Hebrew Cubit (Royal Cubit) is akin to the royal cubits of both the Assyrians and the Persians (discovered by famed Assyriologist Julius Oppert–See measurement of the ROYAL CUBIT here), i.e., 25.20 inches and that Ezekiel 40:5 ascribes its precise dimension; to wit:

5 And behold, there was a wall on the outside of the temple all around, and in the man’s hand was a measuring rod of six cubits, each of which was a cubit and a handbreadth. So he measured the thickness of the wall, one rod; and the height, one rod. (New American Standard Version)

The phrase “measuring rod of six cubits” can readily be interpreted as “six LONG cubits” or “six ROYAL cubits.” Each of these 6 LONG CUBITS is configured as “a cubit and a handbreadth.” Here, the phrase “a cubit” is the STANDARD cubit which was 21.6 inches but added to it was a “handbreadth” which was one’s average palm or 3.6 inches; therefore EACH of the ROYAL CUBITS or LONG CUBITS was a Standard Cubit of 21.6 inches + one 3.6 handbreadth/palm equal to 21.6 inches + 3.6 inches = 25.20 inches or 2.1 feet (25.20”/12” = 2.1 ft.). Thus, six such ROYAL or LONG CUBITS would be 6 X 2.1 feet = 12.6 feet = the length of the measuring rod.

THE PALM – 3.5 OR 3 1/2 INCHES

Consequently, the “rod” or “reed” of Ezekiel 40:5 is akin to the British Imperial measurement of 12.6 feet (Rev. 11:1-2) which is a fractal of the 1,260 days or ½ of Daniel’s 70th Week. We can validate this by: 6 ROYAL CUBITS @ 2.1 Ft. = 12.6 Ft. = the measurement of the ROD – i.e., the “measuring reed/rod” in the hand of Ezekiel and also the “measuring reed/rod” given to John to measure the temple in Revelation 11:1 and again allusions thereto found in Revelation 21:15-17 concerning the “Golden Reed.”

All this to say that the 2,100 years from Adam’s creation unto the 52nd year of Isaac’s life (having been married to Rebecca at age 40 and “begetting” both Jacob and Esau at age 60 – Genesis 25:20, 26) at which age (52 years) Isaac was given the promise (Genesis 26:1-6). It’s this PROMISE of 430 years recorded in both Exodus 12:40 and Gal. 3:17 given IN the “S”eed/Isaac/Christ which is of profound chronological importance. Why? Because if the 2,100 “Biblical Years” as found in the Masoretic Text from Adam to Isaac, son of promise, were confirmed in Genesis 26:1-6 after 12 years of marriage, making Isaac 52 years of age when the promise was confirmed and in which 8 years later at age 60 he begat Jacob and Esau, then the measurement of the Hebrew Sacred Cubit of 2.1 feet, seen as a fractal of “21” in the 2,100 years from Adam’s creation unto Isaac at age 52 years is clearly in view.

Consequently, if we add 2,100 years (Adam’s Creation to the Promise) + 430 years (Promise to the Passover) we arrive at 2,530 years from the Creation of Adam unto the first Passover. It is from here we can calculate that some 480 years elapsed from the first Passover unto the laying of the Solomonic Temple’s Foundation via King Solomon (1 Kings 6:1); thus, we continue our addition (not attempting, at the present, to determine Adam’s exact date of creation—we are simply calculating “total years” in these epic time frames):

2,100 years (patriarchs in Gen. 5 & 11) + 430 years (Promise to Passover) + 480 years (Passover to laying of the Temple’s Foundation in Solomon’s 4th year of his reign) = 3,010 years.

Even so, in our previous article we had calculated the days/years of BOTH Israel’s (390 days/years X 7 = 2,730 years) and Judah’s (40 days/years X 7 = 280 years) retribution found in Ezekiel 4:4-6 (7X is confirmed in Leviticus 26) to be as follows: 2,730 years + 280 years = 3,010 years.

Thus, regardless of Adam’s creation date, using the Masoretic chronological text, some 3,010 years transpired between Adam’s creation and the laying of the Solomonic Temple’s foundation—illustrating to us all that God’s Eternal Plan and Purpose in the creation of humanity (Adam and Eve) was for them to become His Habitation, His Temple—this is precisely what the New Testament proclaims in no uncertain terms—i.e., YE ARE THE TEMPLE OF THE LIVING GOD—LIVING STONES.

Furthermore, these 3,010 years can now be added to via chronologies from antiquity either by secular or biblical history from the Fall of Samaria in the year 722 BC and the destruction by the Angel of the Lord upon the armies of Assyrian King Sennacherib vs. King Hezekiah of Judah in the year 712 BC with the ultimate Fall of Jerusalem in 586 BC, then the Decree of King Cyrus to rebuild the Temple being made in 537 BC (70 years Babylonian Captivity of Judah occurring between 608 BC and 537 BC—Judah’s captivity commencing 21 years before Jerusalem’s Fall on the 9th of Av in 586 BC) – the conquest of Persia by Alexander the Great in 301 BC and ultimately the very birth of Messiah in 1 BC/1 AD – thus we can add as follows:

3,010 years + the years following the 480 years of Solomon’s Temple Foundation (4th year of his reign) which gives us Solomon’s additional years being 36 years (for he reigned for 40 years or 4 years + 36 years = 40 years) + the years of the various kings of both Judah and Israel up through the Fall of Jerusalem in 586 BC to be that of 343 years (See Lambert Dolphin’s chronologies of the KINGS OF JUDAH AND ISRAEL ) + 586 years unto the birth of Christ or:

3,010 years + 36 years (Solomon’s additional reign) = 3,046 years + 343 years of the kings of Judah and Israel following Solomon’s Reign (unto 586 BC) = 3,389 years + 586 years unto 1 BC/1 AD and the birth of Christ (Fall of Jerusalem being in 586 BC and these 586 years extend from Jerusalem’s Fall to the birth of Messiah if calculated on the 1 BC side [6 months] of that full year of 1 BC/1 AD or its spring) = 3,975 years.

Therefore, the creation of Adam took place in the year 3975 BC – IT’S THAT SIMPLE!!

If we are to add the 2019 years (the AD side) to 3975 years (the BC side) we will arrive at 5,994 years or, depending on whether we calculate in astronomical years (1 BC = 1 year and 1 AD = 1 year) we will arrive at 5,993 years or there are now but 7 years left until we arrive at 6,000 years or 5,993 years (3975 years + 2018 years = 5,993 years) + 7 years = 6,000 years.

You may adjudge these chronologies as a useless waste of time and energy spent elsewhere to be much more beneficial; however, the Bible declares that ALL SCRIPTURE IS GIVEN BY INSPIRATION OF GOD AND IS PROFITABLE … therefore, I would caution us all to be as the prophets who sought the day of His first visitation; to wit:

10 Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you, 11 searching what, or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. (1 Peter 1:10-11)

Will the Bible’s chronologies be substantiated in this accounting? Are the 390 days/years (2,730 years) from 712 BC (the final days of Israel/Ephraim’s retribution or 712 BC unto 2018 AD = 2,730 years) and their bringing together in the crucible of Daniel’s 70th Week the House of Judah with the House of Israel—WILL IT FINALLY TAKE PLACE? Does this “double confirmation” of the 3,010 years give us “divine clues” as to the Divine Intention that MAN (ADAM) was destined, just as Judah and Ephraim are destined, to be that TEMPLE OF THE LORD—a HABITATION OF GOD THROUGH THE SPIRIT? Are man’s days so numbered? Is MAN so measured? Are these 6,000 years finally coming to a conclusion? I THINK SO!! But are we ready to be His Holy Habitation, His UNITED KINGDOM?

PART 3 – THE TWO SETS OF 3,010 YEARS – MAN WAS MADE TO BE THE “TEMPLE OF THE LORD” – THE HOUSE OF JUDAH AND THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL SHALL BE ONE STICK IN THE HAND OF THE LORD – AND DAVID SHALL UNITE THEM BOTH! (Just can’t get enough of this “stuff”.)

I am intrigued by the 10 YEARS between Israel’s 10 Northern Tribes’ Capital at Samaria (Footnote No. 1) falling in the year 722 BC (Footnote No. 2); and the siege of Judah’s capital at Jerusalem with the subsequent demise of Assyrian King Sennacherib’s 185,000 destroyed by the Angel of the Lord in 712 BC (Footnote No. 3). This 10-year gap between 722 BC and 712 BC is hotly debated; however, after extensive research (See All Footnotes No. 1 through No. 4) this author is persuaded that the dates are more than historically and biblically valid.

In our last two articles (viz., WHY DO “BIBLICAL YEARS” MAKE ONE WHOLE LOT OF “BIBLICAL SENSE?” and “THE 390 DAYS EZEKIEL RESTED ON HIS LEFT SIDE FOR ISRAEL & THE 40 DAYS ON HIS RIGHT SIDE FOR JUDAH – EZEKIEL 4:4-6. ITS POSSIBLE MEANING…”) we described from Ezekiel 4:1-8 the demarcation between Judah’s 280 years (40 days/years X 7 = 280 years) and Israel’s 2,730 years (390 days/years X 7 = 2,730 years) being these 10 years (722-712 BC). Let’s explore if these 10 years provide further clues as to why they are inserted in this most peculiar manner.

The “10 YEARS” between Ephraim’s demise in 722 BC (viz., the Fall of Samaria, the capital of the 10 Northern Tribes of Israel), and Judah’s King Hezekiah facing off with the Assyrian King Sennacherib beginning in 712 BC provides us this “10-year gap.” The final assault by the Assyrians upon Judah’s capital at Jerusalem is intertwined with the 10-Northern Tribes having a common beginning in 1002 BC.

King David reigned in the City of David for 33 years (1 Kings 2:11) which clearly commenced in the year 1002 BC—from the first Passover in 1445 BC in Egypt unto the laying of the Temple’s Foundation in the 4th Year of Solomon’s reign (1 Kings 6:1) are 480 years or 1445 BC less 480 years = 965 BC.

Therefore, counting “backwards” we calculate these 4 years (Solomon’s reign mentioned in 1 Kings 6:1) + the 33 years David ruled from the City of David in Jerusalem (1 Kings 2:11) or 4 + 33 = 37 years or 965 BC + 37 years = 1002 BC being the commencement of the 280 years relative to Judah’s dealings in relationship to Ezekiel’s prophetic elaboration or the Almighty’s dealings with Judah (i.e., 1002 BC to 722 BC = 280 years) . . . juxtaposed to that of a future Ten Northern Tribe separate dealing with Ephraim/Israel (712 BC to 2018 AD or 2,730 years) . . . in this sense Israel’s Ten Northern Tribes were loosely affiliated with Judah’s Two Tribes for they were all, at the time, Israelites. Consequently, from 1002 BC unto the demise of Samaria in 722 BC—the capital of Israel’s 10 Northern Tribes—we arrive at the following:

. . . 1002 BC less 280 years (i.e., 40 days/years X 7 [Leviticus 26:18, 24, 28 – Ezk. 4:6] = 722 BC which date is the Fall of Samaria (Israel) wherein they were “broken off” from Judah, administratively speaking—although some of them survived deportation until 712 BC unto the Siege of Jerusalem under Assyrian King Sennacherib (2 Kings 17:1-8; 18:1, 9-13 – i.e., from the commencement of the Siege of Samaria in 722-719 BC [4th year of King Hezekiah’s reign and the 7th year of King Hoshea’s reign] unto the 14th year of King Hezekiah – the 14th/15th year of King Hezekiah’s reign being in the year 712 BC – please note that Israel’s 10 Northern Tribes were previously made, as well, a “vassal state” wherein Israel paid tribute to the Assyrian King Shalmaneser (2 Kings 17:3); thus, the historic date of Samaria’s fall “composites” in the year 722 BC. wherein the from the “siege of Samaria” (722 BC) unto the attempted “siege of Jerusalem” (712 BC) are some 10 years (See: https://www.conservapedia.com/Fall_of_Samaria) – See footnote #1.) The terminus of Israel’s 10 Northern Tribes was not accomplished by the Assyrians until 712 BC (during 33 years from 745 BC until 712 BC the deportations took place—See Footnotes Nos. 2, 3, and 4).

I find it somewhat peculiar in Ezekiel that the “House of Israel’s” retributions/dealings of 2,730 years (Ezk. 4:5 or 390 days/years X 7 = 2,730 years) precedes that of Judah’s retribution forecast; whereas, in the chronologies Judah’s connection to King David we notice the “messianic” import in its 33-year rule from the City of David/Jerusalem. Jesus is said to have been crucified in the year 33 AD at the full age, I affirm, having died on His 33rd birthday, again, Judah’s actual chronology comes first (viz., 1002 BC to 722 BC or 280 years); yet, the prophecy regarding Israel’s-10-tribe retribution is chronologically set in the latter years between 712 BC to 2018 AD or 2,730 years).

If we are to “view” Ezekiel’s two sets of numbered years (2,730 years for Israel and 280 years for Judah) as God’s “dealings” with them in light of Leviticus 26 (i.e., seven times retribution), then this “10-year gap” between 722 BC to 712 BC has prophetic implications, as well as “double meanings” confirmed throughout the Scripture.

From Jeremiah 3:8 we realize that YHVH divorced Israel (aka, Ephraim) – “I had put her away and given her a certificate of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah did not fear but went and played the harlot also” (Notwithstanding, the Almighty did NOT give Judah a certificate of divorce!). Furthermore, this same DIVORCED ISRAEL was taken away from 745 BC unto 712 BC (33 years – See Footnote No. 4) in Assyrian deportations and, therefore, it was said of Samaria:

Aliens would swallow it up, Israel is swallowed up; now they are among the NATIONS like a vessel in which is no pleasure. For they have gone up to Assyria; like a wild donkey alone by itself; Ephraim has hired lovers. Yes, though they have hired among the nations, now I will gather them; and they shall sorrow a little, because of the burden of the king of princes” (Hosea 8:6-10).

Ephraim’s scattering among the nations (aka, the Gentiles) from 712 BC (Israel’s final date of deportations) unto the present in 2018 AD is some 2,730 years (712 + 2018 = 2,730 years). Embedded in the prophecy found in Hosea 8:6-10 is not only the retribution of dispersion/assimilation but also of a promised restoration of Israel! During this time the Almighty has dealt with His “Prodigal Son” (10 Northern Tribes) who left the Father’s House (Luke 15:11-32) via the 10 Tribes scattered among the nations but who, would someday be gathered/restored.

We know this to be through our Lord and Savior, as our Deliverer, Yeshua Hamashiach. Indeed, the Father has gone out to embrace us, the Prodigal. How could YHVH remarry such a harlot? For her to remarry, the first husband must DIE! Dr. Doug Hamp’s commentary on this is outstanding (Footnote 6) . . . depicting the death and resurrection of “her first husband.”

Ephraim’s “remarriage” is validated by the Apostle Paul and James; to wit:

“Even us whom He called, not of the Jews (Judah) only, but also of the Nations (lit. ETHNOS)? As He says also in HOSEA: ‘I will call them My people, who were not My people, and her beloved, who was not beloved.’ ‘And it shall come to pass in the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not My people,’ there they shall be called sons of the living God.’” (Romans 9:24-26; Hos. 2:23 and 1:10)

Simon has declared how God at the first visited the Nations (aka, Gentiles) to take out of them a people for His name. And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written: ‘After this I will return and will rebuild the tabernacle of David (lit., THE UNITED KINGDOM OF ISRAEL – where Judah and the 10 Northern Tribes of Israel were under ONE KING and his kingdom), which has fallen down; I will rebuild its ruins, and I will set it up; so that the rest of mankind (lit., EDOM or ADAM) may seek the LORD, even all the NATIONS (“ethnos” or Gentiles) who are called by My name. Says the LORD who does all these things” (Acts 15:14-17).

The transference/integration of Ephraim/Israel into the Nations/Gentiles is a most profound truth—no, Ephraim was NOT swallowed up by Judah in the Babylonian Captivity some 160 years after their deportations commenced (745 BC to 608 BC was nigh 150 years; and from 745 BC to 586 BC or the initial invasion of Israel territory by the Assyrians unto the Fall of Jerusalem, under the Neo-Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar, was certainly over 150 years).

Some demographers calculate that from 745 BC to 712 BC (33 years) some 15,000,000 to 18,000,000 Israelites were deported to the nations of the Assyrian Empire which stretched from deep into Africa’s Ethiopia to virtually all the Middle East, Turkey, and vast stretches of the Persian Empire of later years (Footnote No. 5).


Those Israelites “scattered among the nations” became in sum and substance that “MULTITUDE OF NATIONS” referred to in the Septuagint; while reappearing in Romans 11:25 as “THE FULLNESS OF THE GENTILES has come in” (cf. Gen. 12:2; 17:4-5; 35:11; 48:4, 19; Hos. 7:8). This FULLNESS OF THE GENTILES is that MULTITUDE OF NATIONS which speaks directly to the issue of ONENESS in the Body of Messiah—of Ephraim’s scattering and gathering into the Father’s ONE HOUSE so that Paul can boldly declare:

“And so ALL ISRAEL [both houses of Israel: Judah and Israel] will be saved, as it is written: ‘The Deliver will come out of Zion, and He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob; for this is My covenant with them, when I take away their sins’” (Romans 11:26-27).

Are we at the singular dealing of Ephraim’s retribution and dealings with them? Have we completed the 2,730 years (712 BC unto 2018 AD)? Will today the prophecy regarding the TWO STICKS – The Stick of Judah and the Stick of Joseph, which is the Stick of Ephraim, be joined as ONE STICK IN THE HAND OF THE LORD (Ezekiel 37:15-28)? Are we approaching the era whereof we read:

“David My servant shall be king over them, and they shall all have one shepherd; they shall also walk in My judgments and observe My statutes, and do them . . . I will establish them and multiply them, and I will set My sanctuary in their midst forevermore . . . they shall no longer be two nations, nor shall they ever be divided into two kingdoms . . . Then they shall be My people, and I will be their God” (Excerpts from Ezk. 37)?

Yes, the “10 years” bespeaks of the 10 TRIBES; bespeaks of the 10 DAYS OF AWE between Tishrei 1 and Tishrei 10 (between the Feast of Trumpets and Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement) wherein the call to repentance is given until the blood is sprinkled by the High Priest upon the Mercy Seat within the Holiest of All. Yes, so it has been done through His Atoning Sacrifice—but now the Worthy Lamb shall come as the “Wrath of the Lamb” for the “devil is about to throw some of you into prison, that you may be tested, and you will have tribulation TEN DAYS (Rev. 2:10) . . . and the Beast with 10 HORNS and 10 CROWNS (Rev. 13:1) is all the more enraged against the saints of the Most High but Babylon the Great is destined for judgment in that ONE-TENTH OF THE CITY is destroyed by the greatest of earthquakes (Rev. 11:13—JUDGMENT DAY).

We know, once again, from Adam’s Creation (3975 BC) unto the laying of the Temple’s Foundation in the Fourth Year of Solomon’s Reign (1 Kings 6:1) some 3,010 years transpired (3975 BC less 965 BC = 3,010 years). Indeed, the 3,010 years of Judah (280 years) and Israel (2,730 years) together align with these initial 3,010 years (i.e., 280 years + 2,730 years = 3,010 years) displaying God’s intention for man’s creation (Adam) was to have a habitation, a Temple, a House, not made with hands, eternal in the heavens (3975 BC to 965 BC = 3,010 years – see 2 Cor. 5:1) in which the Almighty would DWELL WITH MAN (Ezk. 37:27 – “My tabernacle also shall be with them; indeed, I will be their God, and they shall be My people” . . . “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God” (Rev. 21:3).

He substantiated that vision and “divine longing” by calling out a people for His Name (Israel) which under divine decree was split into Judah and Ephraim—notwithstanding it was Joshua and Caleb, the two affirmative spies who entered the PROMISED LAND; for Joshua whose name is foreseen in Yeshua was of the Tribe of Ephraim; and Caleb was of the Tribe of Judah—the Lion of the Tribe of Judah (King David) – from Israel’s crossing of the Jordan in 1405 BC (or 1445 BC the Passover/Exodus/Law minus 40 years in the Wilderness = 1405 BC) unto 2025 AD are some 3,430 years or 3430 ÷ 490 Epical Jubilee cycles or 49 years X 10 = 490 years = 7 or 7 X 490 years = 3,430 years.

Thus, the COMPLETE prophetic history of Joshua and Caleb, of Ephraim and Judah, from the Conquest of Canaan/the Promised Land unto the Millennium are 7 Epical Jubilee Cycles – their UNITED DESTINY seems evident from that date of 10 Nisan, 1405 BC (Joshua 4:19 – the same date that Jesus on that Palm Sunday, 33 AD entered Jerusalem as “Messiah the Prince” [Daniel 9:26; Zech. 9:9; Matt. 21:5; Mark 11:7,9; Luke 19:38; John 12:15] and the same day that Ezekiel saw the Holy District [Ezk. 40:1]) unto 2025/26 AD that these 7 sets of 490 years would be fulfilled for BOTH Joshua and Caleb – for both Houses of Israel – for both the Jews of Judah and the Israelites scattered among the nations!

Yes, Moses’ years of 120 terminated in 1405 BC, for Moses did not cross over the Jordan River with the Israelites—but his 120 years (born in 1525 BC and lived for 120 years until 1405 BC) separates the rest of the 6,000 years from these 7 Epical Jubilee Cycles of 3,430 years or 3,430 years + 120 years = 3,550 years . . . therefore 6,000 years less 3,550 years = 2,450 years (the birth of Moses from Adam’s Creation in 3975 BC unto the year 1525 BC are some 2,450 years or 5 sets of 490 years or 490 X 5 = 2,450 years + 120 years + 3,430 years = 6,000 years . . . the SIX DAYS OF MAN (Gen. 6:3).

Satan sought to destroy the ONENESS OF THE UNITED KINGDOM OF DAVID . . . by dividing Joshua from Caleb – by separating Ephraim from Judah – but God had other plans . . . plans which called for that MULTITUDE OF NATIONS to be DELIVERED with JUDAH awaiting until ALL ISRAEL SHALL BE DELIVERED!

Allow me to “go devotional” here. Are we aligned with God’s eternal plan and purpose for MAN? To be His Holy People, His Holy Temple? Shall we say AMEN in bringing both the Stick of Judah and the Stick of Ephraim together under Jeremiah’s end-time admonition:

“Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, that I will perform the good things which I have promised to the house of Israel and to the house of Judah . . . For behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, ‘that I will bring back from captivity My people Israel and Judah,’ says the LORD. ‘And I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it.’” . . . IN THE LATTER DAYS YOU WILL CONSIDER IT” (Jeremiah 30:3, 24)?

May the Lord continue to open our eyes . . . Doug Krieger

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Footnote #1:

Shechem was the first capital of the Kingdom of Israel.[14] Afterwards it was Tirzah.[15] King Omri built his capital in Samaria (1 Kings 16:24), which continued as such until the destruction of the Kingdom by the Assyrians (2 Kings 17:5). During the three-year siege of Samaria by the Assyrians, Shalmaneser V died and was succeeded by Sargon II of Assyria, who himself records the capture of that city thus: “Samaria I looked at, I captured; 27,280 men who dwelt in it I carried away” into Assyria. Thus, around 720 BCE, after two centuries, the kingdom of the ten tribes came to an end. (Source: Wikipedia)

Footnote #2:

The Conquest of Israel

In 722 BC, the Assyrians conquered Israel. The Assyrians were aggressive and effective; the history of their dominance over the Middle East is a history of constant warfare. In order to assure that conquered territories would remain pacified, the Assyrians would force many of the native inhabitants to relocate to other parts of their empire. They almost always chose the upper and more powerful classes, for they had no reason to fear the general mass of a population. They would then send Assyrians to relocate in the conquered territory.

When they conquered Israel, they forced the ten tribes to scatter throughout their empire. For all practical purposes, you might consider this a proto-Diaspora (“diaspora”=”scattering”), except that these Israelites disappear from history permanently; they are called “the ten lost tribes of Israel.” Why this happened is difficult to assess. The Assyrians did not settle the Israelites in one place, but scattered them in small populations all over the Middle East. When the Babylonians later conquered Judah, they, too, relocate[d] a massive amount of the population. However, they move[d] that population to a single location so that the Jews can set up a separate community and still retain their religion and identity. The Israelites deported by the Assyrians, however, do not live in separate communities and soon drop their Yahweh religion and their Hebrew names and identities. (Source: Ancient Jewish History – The Two Kingdoms – The Jewish Virtual Library, a Project of AICE – Ancient Jewish History)

Footnote #3:

Dating the Sennacherib’s Campaign to Judah – 712 BCE

Abstract:

The traditional date of 701 BCE for Sennacherib’s campaign to Judah, with the siege of Lachish and Jerusalem and the Battle of Eltekeh, is accepted by historians for many years without notable controversy. However, the inscription of Sargon II, found at Tang-i Var in 1968, requires to date this famous campaign during his 10th campaign, in 712 BCE, implying a coregency with Sennacherib from 714 BCE. A thorough analysis of the annals and the reliefs of Sargon and Sennacherib shows that there was only one campaign in Judah and not two. The Assyrian assault involved the presence of at least six kings (or similar):

1) taking of Ashdod by the Assyrian king Sargon II in his 10th campaign,

2) taking of Lachish by Sennacherib during his 3rd campaign,

3) siege of Jerusalem dated 14th year of Judean King Hezekiah;

4) battle of Eltekeh led by Nubian coregent Taharqa;

5) under the leadership of King Shabataka during his 1st year of reign;

6) probable disappearance of the Egyptian king Osorkon IV in his 33rd year of reign. This conclusion agrees exactly with the biblical account that states all these events occurred during the 14th year of Judean King Hezekiah dated 712 BCE (2 Kings 18:13-17, 19:9; 2 Chronicles 32:9; Isaiah 20:1, 36:1, 37:9).

(Source:
Dating the Sennacherib’s Campaign to Judah by Gerhard Gertoux, author at the University Press of America)

Footnote No. 4:

The relative calm ended in the middle eighth century BC. In 745 BC, Tiglath-Pileser III (called Pul in biblical traditions; 2 Kings 15:19) took the throne of Assyria. A shrewd and capable ruler, he quickly managed to forge the warring Assyrian factions into a formidable nation. Soon, Assyria ruthlessly began building an empire, extending control over Babylon and the Medes to the East, defeating the Kingdom of Urartu to the North, and extending control to the West into Eastern Asia Minor, Phoenicia (Tyre), Syria (Damascus), and into northern Israelite territory. The nations of Israel and Judah, for the first time in their history, would now have to deal with a serious military threat to their very existence. (Source: Old Testament History Assyrian Dominance (745 BC-640 BC) by Dennis Batcher, THE VOICE, Biblical and Theological Resources for Growing Christians

ALSO:

THE FALL OF ISRAEL, b. c. 780-721. The decline of Israel after the reign of Jeroboam II, was rapid. A succession of usurpers seized the throne, the foreign conquests melted away, and anarchy prevailed. The cause of these sudden changes was the growth of the Assyrian power under a succession of warlike kings, who made Nineveh the capital of the Eastern world. Syria fell before their arms, and Israel soon followed. In the reign of Menahem, Israel became tributary to Assyria; and in that of Pekah, B. C. 745, the portion of Israel on the north, including the tribe of Naphtali, was carried into captivity by Tiglath-pileser. (2 Kings 15:29). In the reign of Hoshea, Samaria itself was taken (B. C. 721) by Sargon (having been besieged by Shalmaneser); and the Ten Tribes were finally carried into captivity to Halah and Habor. (2 Kings 17). (Source: – Manual of Biblical Geography: A Text book on Bible History – By Jesse Lyman Hurlburt, , 1887, by Rand, McNally & Company, Washington, D.C.

Footnote No. 5:

“The number of these Israelites must be very great [deported into Assyrian lands], if the account be at all correct, as to the proportion which they bear to the whole population, this being stated by the most accurately-informed writers to be from 15,000,000 to 18,000,000. But this information is confirmed in a very satisfactory manner from other sources. With regard to the country of Bokhara, it is worthy of remark that certain Jewish writers have regarded it as the Hara into which some of the Israelites were exiled by the King of Assyria. This country appears to have been known in India at an early period by the name of Hara; the addition Bok, or Buck, only distinguishes it from some other notable Hara (mountain range). As Hara is Hebrew, so is Bok, signifying mixed or confused. At an early period of history the dominion of Bokhara extended from the Caspian Sea into Khorasan; and when Seleucus, after Alexander’s death, took possession of these regions, many Jews (Israelites) went there as colonists, and they progeny have ever since continued there, but kept distinct from the Beni-Israel, also resident there in large numbers. Yahoodeyah, in Merv, was probably one of their early cities. It is not unlikely that the seats of early Jewish/Israelite colonization amongst people to whom the name of the Beni-Israel was familiar, were always known as Yahoodeyah, and this is precisely the name by which Oude was first known. . ..” (Source: THE DESTINY OF NATIONS INDICATED IN PROPHECY by the Rev. John Cumming, D.D., F.R.S.E., London, Hurst and Blackett, Publishers, Successors to Henry Colburn, 13, Great Marlborough Street, 1864. UK, p. 159)

Footnote No. 6:

God’s Divorce and Remarriage And The Restoration of Israel Through the New Covenant . . . A Study of God’s Marriage to Israel under the First Covenant, at Sinai, Their Divorce Due to Israel’s Adultery, And their Restoration Under the New Covenant Established by Yeshua/Jesus” by Dr. Douglas Hamp

THE ORACLE OF DAMASCUS – MESSIAH – JUDAH & EPHRAIM??

THE ORACLE OF DAMASCUS – MESSIAH – JUDAH & EPHRAIM??

Brethren –

Allow me to clearly explain the three-fold revelation given by Zechariah in Chapter 9 of his book:

(1)  Zechariah 9:1-8 – These verses are exceedingly relevant for today.  This is the prophetic war which precedes the 70th Week of Daniel’s prophecy (Daniel 9:24-27) and the Second Coming of Messiah (specifically, Daniel 9:27; Ezk. 38-39; Daniel 11:40-45).  It is seen in Isaiah 17 as well and involves on one side the following belligerants against Israel:  Syria, Lebanon, Gaza and the Stronghold of Ephraim (Syria, Hezbollah, Hamas, and the Palestinian Authority HQed in Ramallah) – this is happening NOW and is coming to a rapid conclusion.

(2)  Zechariah 9:9-10 – These two verses are perhaps the most potent prophetic texts regarding Messiah in Scripture, with Zechariah 9:9 being recorded in all four gospels.  Zechariah 9:9 bespeaks of His First Coming; whereas, Zechariah 9:10 bespeaks of His Second Coming in glory!  These verses are interlinked with the Oracle of Damascus because the Oracle of Damascus signals the Messianic Era is fast upon us!

(3)  Zechariah 9:11-17 – These verses deal with Messiah’s bringing together in the Latter Days both Judah and Ephraim (vs. 13).  It is a “divine amazement” of His work of restoration and reconciliation of the Two Houses–and is reflected, as well in Ezekiel 37:15-28 in the prophecy of the Two Sticks (Judah and Ephraim) coming together in the Latter Days.   All three sections of Zechariah 9 are an astounding climax of God’s Eternal Plan and Purposes for the Ages; they involve the “nations” allied against Israel (Zech. 9:1-8); the Messiah (Zech. 9:9-10) and the reconciliation of ALL ISRAEL (God’s corporate people) in Zechariah 9:11-17; therefore . . . .

After Doug Hamp’s marvelous disclosures in Zechariah which I likened to Doug H. traveling into the Grand Canyon on a donkey; whereas, yours truly in his book on Zechariah (Unsealing the End of Days—The Visions, Prophecy, and Messianic Scenario of Zechariah) simply flew over Zechariah Chapters 7-14 at 40,000 feet viewing on the “right side of the plane the Grand Canyon” as announced by the Captain . . . I got to thinking about that “donkey” and discovered this, after a sister in Christ prompted my interest as to where we may be in the present prophetic time table . . .

THE ORACLE OF DAMASCUS

I have suggested that the Oracle of Damascus (Zech. 9:1-8) is NOT some miscellaneous insertion into Zechariah’s ultimate lead up to the events clearly outlined in Zech. 9-14 but commences the End of Days/End of Time, End of the Age and the splendid fulfillment of the Feast of Tabernacles and the Rule and Reign of the Son of David upon His Millennial Throne over the nations, etc., found in Zechariah 14.

I reached this conclusion due to several facts:

  • 9:1-8 concludes by the announcement of the two-fold expression of the Messiah as KING riding into Jerusalem (i.e., His Triumphal Entry) on 10 Nisan, 33 A.D. (which, I know we are not all in total agreement [iviz., 30 to 33 A.D.]—but bear with me).
  • Matthew, Mark, Luke and John ALL RECORD Zech. 9:9 (Matt. 21:5; Mark 11:7, 9; Luke 19:38; John 12:15).  What I find interesting in the gospels is the fact that Zech. 9:10 is completely omitted; however, Mark’s gospel states:  “Blessed is the Kingdom of our Father David” (Mark 11:9) which may, in turn, express the intent of Amos 9:11 (shown in Acts 15:13-17) regarding the United Kingdom of David even in His First Coming (“Until Messiah the Prince” – Daniel 9:26 – at the conclusion of the 62nd Week or the end of the 69th Week).

What rivets my attention is Zech. 9:10 which is directly related to His Second Coming again in Glory:  “I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, and the horse from Jerusalem (Judah); the battle bow shall be cut off . . . He shall speak peace to the nations; His dominion shall be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth.”

Ephraim (the Ten Tribes of the North—Israel, Jezreel, Samaria or Ephraim) and Judah (Jerusalem – the Two Tribes of the South being Judah and Benjamin) are DIVINELY DELIVERED by the Deliverer, I affirm, Who shall roar out of Zion, and so ALL ISRAEL shall be saved (Romans 9:26-27).

“ALL ISRAEL” IN ROMANS 11:26 IS JUDAH AND EPHRAIM!

This ALL ISRAEL (Romans 11:26) is again amplified in the verses following Zech. 9:9-10 regarding Messiah’s First and Second Comings – First, as King, though He was the Suffering Servant (Zechariah 3) He still came to raise up the Tabernacle of David—THE UNITED KINGDOM OF DAVID (Acts. 15/Amos 9:11)—but He will come again in glory as the King of kings, and Lord of lords” wherein “His dominion shall be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth” (Zechariah 9:10b).

This said, the immediate verses following the fact that Judah (Jerusalem) and Ephraim (Israel) shall not be delivered by their own efforts but only by His DIVINE INTERVENTION.  Some of the following verses which follow the Oracle of Damascus (Zechariah 9:1-8) and the Messianic insertions found in Zechariah 9:9-10, utterly substantiate the coming together of Judah and Ephraim in the latter days and, no doubt, so it appears, after the Oracle of Damascus:

11 “As for you also, Because of the blood of your covenant,
I will set your prisoners free from the waterless pit.
12 Return to the stronghold,
You prisoners of hope.
Even today I declare
That I will restore double to you.
13 For I have bent Judah, My bow,
Fitted the bow with Ephraim,
And raised up your sons, O Zion,
Against your sons, O Greece
,

And made you like the sword of a mighty man.”

14 Then the Lord will be seen over them,
And His arrow will go forth like lightning.
The Lord God will blow the trumpet,
And go with whirlwinds from the south.
15 The Lord of hosts will defend them;
They shall devour and subdue with sling stones,

They shall drink and roar as if with wine;
They shall be filled with blood like basins,
Like the corners of the altar.
16 The Lord their God will save them in that day,
As the flock of His people.
For they shall be like the jewels of a crown,
Lifted like a banner over His land—
17 For how great is its goodness
And how great its beauty!
Grain shall make the young men thrive,
And new wine the young women.

ZECHARIAH 9:11-17 – CERTAINLY PROPHETIC

These verses, I affirm, are set within, in the main, the context of the Final Week—Daniel’s 70th Week—in particular, I would draw our attention to vs. 13:  “For I have bent Judah, My bow; Fitted the bow with Ephraim, and raised up your sons, O Zion, against your sons, O Greece, and made you like the sword of a mighty man.”

Herein is a wonderful truth – Judah and Ephraim are found together within this context wherein they have become THE SWORD OF A MIGHTY MAN.  Judah and Ephraim are now seen as the SONS OF ZION juxtaposed to the SONS OF GREECE – yes AGAINST the “sons of Greece.”

In vs. 12 it speaks of the PRISONERS OF HOPE—for Israel was often carted off to Greece and enslaved by Greece (Joel 3:6).  Indeed, the reference to Zech. 9:13 is MOST UNUSUAL in that Zechariah commenced his writing cir. 520 BC or COMING OUT OF BABYLON no doubt from 537 BC (Decree of Cyrus the Great) unto some 49 years thereafter (488 BC—the probable date of the completion of the Second Temple). The conquest by Alexander the Great of the Persian Empire was completed cir. 330 BC – therefore, this statement in Zechariah 9:13 was written cir. 450 BC

The fact of the matter is this:  History clearly records Alexander the Great’s defeat of the Persians cir. 331-329 BC—many decades before this time—therefore, the reference to Greece in Zechariah 9:13 has, I believe, within its mentioning an immense prophetic import in reference to the “latter rain” (spring rain) mentioned in Zechariah 10:1 – “Ask the LORD for rain in the time of the latter rain…”

I think, considering Judah and Ephraim’s “consolidation” in this period of the “latter rain,” juxtaposed, over and against, the sons of Greece, that the KINGDOMS OF THIS WORLD—headed up by the WEST (viz., Greco-Roman or Greece) shall in no way ever again inhibit the PRISONERS OF HOPE.  The best the world can offer cannot compare to the Deliverer and His coming Kingdom!

Indeed, as brother Gavin Finley elucidates:  “The LORD their God will save them in that day, as the FLOCK OF HIS PEOPLE, FOR THEY SHALL BE LIKE THE JEWELS (*lit. STONES) OF A CROWN, lifted like a banner over His land–for how great is its goodness and how great its beauty!”

MESSIAH BEARS THE TRIPLE CROWN

Could this, as well, allude to the “Crown atop the head of Joshua, the High Priest” found in Zech. 6:11-13?  Certainly, the Melchizedekian dual office of Priest and King—wherein Messiah becomes the “Mediator of a New Covenant” bringing man to God as our High Priest in His First Coming (Zech. 9:9); then, coming again in glory at His Second Coming as King of kings (Zech. 9:10) is in view here.

Even so, this “elaborate crown” is described by Jewish authorities as a BRAIDED crown having THREE distinct golden braids interwoven around the entire “crown” (literally forming the crown) with the frontal portion of the crown bearing a signet with the “Name of God” inscribed thereon.

This is the TRIPLE CROWN—“Crown Him with many crowns” (Rev. 19:12)—this can be no other that the emphasis upon the work of Messiah as the PROPHET wherein the Stem & Bowl of the Universal Lampstand shown in Zechariah 4—having two Olive Trees astride the Central Stem/Bowl displays not only the office of the High Priest (Joshua) and that of Zerubbabel (the Governor/King) but boldly declares that Zechariah is seen as the PROPHET in the midst of the Two Olive Trees (the “two sons of oil“); therefore:  MESSIAH IS:  PROPHET, AND PRIEST, AND KING!  He wears the elaborate, triple crown with YAH emblazoned upon it!

THE TIMING OF JUDAH-EPHRAIM BECOMING ONE STICK

Again, the bringing together of Judah and Ephraim cannot be divorced from BOTH the Oracle of Damascus (Zechariah 9:1-8; Isaiah 17:1-14) and the overarching impact of DIVINE DELIVERANCE through Messiah’s First and Second Comings (Zech. 9:9-10) AND the subsequent discoveries of that ongoing deliverance found in the elaborations of His workings with Judah and Ephraim found in Zechariah 9:11-17.

We simply cannot avoid the sequence of these events and their prophetic dynamic which substantiates the uniting of these Two Sticks in the eyes of the Lord during our mutual and immediate future (Ezekiel 37:15-28).  Our opposition to the imprisonment of Greece seems apparent within the context of this Divine Deliverance and bringing together of the Two Houses.

The immediate prophetic RELEVANCE of Zechariah 9 appears upon us at this assiduous hour in time and space—if we are living in 2018 A.D. at the climax of the Oracle of Damascus with war raging in Syria and Damascus pending utter destruction—then too, we find that Judah (the Jews) and those being gathered these past 2,000 years from among the Gentiles to be a people for His Name (Ephraim and Edom, the “Rest of Mankind”—Acts 15) are immediately destined to become ONE STICK IN THE HAND OF THE LORD!

Likewise, it seems obvious to me that Zechariah knew full-well that the vast majority of those returning from Babylon to Jerusalem to rebuild the Temple and the City/Walls, etc. (confirmed by Ezra and Nehemiah) were JEWS—those taken into captivity from 608 BC unto 537 BC—the 70 years captivity— with the 10 Tribes of Israel/Ephraim simply “swallowed up of the nations” from 745 BC to their extremity in 712 BC (the year of King Hezekiah of Judah’s elongated year and defeat of the armies of Assyrian King Sennacherib and some 185,000 soldiers killed by the Angel of the Lord).

In other words, by 537 BC the Ten Northern Tribes had been disbursed/deported off to Assyria for nigh 200 years (i.e., from 745 BC to 537 BC) with 745-712 BC being the period of Israel’s deportations into Assyria!  It is difficult to think that these “Israelites” of Ephraim when deported to Assyria could not number, as we have previously discussed, upwards of 10 million persons and that during a 200-year time-frame could readily, through upwards of 20 generations, replicate their population many times over!!  (Based upon the fact of their populations having been recorded by David [I Chron. 21; 2 Sam. 24] and elaborated through sundry wars between Judah and Ephraim thereafter–2 Chron. 13:17)

When we consider the approximate number of some 50,000 who returned from Babylon (Ezra 2)–this is, in comparison to those who were scattered among the nations, a minuscule number indeed!  Truly, Ephraim has been multiplied far and beyond their original numbers when they were deported. Demographers could have a field day with their numbers.  Indeed, Josephus’ remarks regarding the number of Israelites beyond the Euphrates was simply INNUMERABLE! (cir. First Century AD – Antiquities of the Jews, Books IV and V – Flavius Josephus).

Again, Zechariah 9 is perhaps one of the most relevant prophetic passages of our time!!  I am elated to have “stumbled” across this validation of the bringing together via DIVINE DELIVERANCE of ALL ISRAEL at the close of this age.  Likewise, I affirm the rise of “Biblical Zionism” both among Bible-believing Christians and among the Jews, especially in the land of Israel—is a DIVINE PREPARATION of the uniting together of these two sticks in the hand of the Lord.  I say this no matter the confusing doctrines which seem to proliferate concerning this future fulfillment (raptures, dual covenants, etc.)

Believers in Jesus today find their affections for things “Jewish” (Feast Days, Sabbath, Torah observance, visiting the Land of Israel, celebrating the yearly Feast of Tabernacles in Israel, etc.) is ALL preparation for this inevitable prophetic fulfillment and the coming again of Messiah in Glory!

Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying: 10 “Receive the giftfrom the captives—from Heldai, Tobijah, and Jedaiah, who have come from Babylon—and go the same day and enter the house of Josiah the son of Zephaniah. 11 Take the silver and gold, make anb] elaborate crown, and set it on the head of Joshua the son of Jehozadak, the high priest. 12 Then speak to him, saying, ‘Thus says the Lord of hosts, saying:

13 Yes, He shall build the temple of the Lord.
He shall bear the glory,
And shall sit and rule on His throne;
So He shall be a priest on His throne,
And the counsel of peace shall be between [a]them both.” ’

14 “Now the elaborate crown shall be for a memorial in the temple of the Lord for Helem, Tobijah, Jedaiah, and Hen the son of Zephaniah. Even those from afar shall come and build the temple of the Lord. Then you shall know that the Lord of hosts has sent Me to you. And this shall come to pass if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God.”  (Zechariah 6:9-14) . . . 

His eyes were like a flame of fire, and he wore many crowns on his head. He had a name written on him, but no one except himself knows what it is.” (Rev. 19:12)

Bless

THE COMMONWEALTH OF ISRAEL–WHO’S INCLUDED?

THE COMMONWEALTH OF ISRAEL–WHO’S INCLUDED?

Brethren – as you all may know, in my text, COMMONWEALTH THEOLOGY—An Introduction — I briefly covered the issue of those who “were without Christ” – “who once were far off” – but who “have been brought near by the blood of Christ” (Eph. 2:12-13 – Excerpts).

Upon reading a number of commentaries on this portion of Scripture—especially, those of Dispensational conviction, such as Dr. J. Vernon McGee* (but others as well of the Dispensational persuasion), there seems to be a preponderance of interpretation that being without Christ, without God, without hope, does NOT include participation in the Commonwealth of Israel once one is in Christ—in other words, once one is with Christ, or IN Christ through the blood of Christ does NOT constitute entrance into the Commonwealth of Israel.

One is viewed as a non-citizen, an ALIEN, a stranger from the covenants of PROMISE, having no hope and without God in the world but now IN Christ we can pick and choose those items which were outside our immediate purview—we obviously now have God in this world of ours; we now have hope; and we’re hardly strangers from the covenants of promise; especially, now, since we are all “children of promise” via the Seed, which is Christ (Galatians 3:15-18, 29; 4:28)—likewise, since we at least are spiritually sharing in the blessings (Darby) of the New Covenant or have our own New Covenant (with natural Israel awaiting their own New Covenant as the Dispensationalists contend at the Second Coming of Christ).

But somehow, through it all, those “who were afar off” are brought nigh to all these divine realities by being IN Christ, the “S”eed but forbid we enter into the Commonwealth of Israel for our “citizenship” is in heaven and we “eagerly await a Savior from there” (Phil. 3:20). Notwithstanding, and although we who were once aliens from the Commonwealth of Israel, have, now in Christ, been brought near through His blood, but that apparently, according to our Dispensational brethren, does not open to us the door into the Commonwealth of Israel?

I find this “pick and pull” method of interpretation most convenient for our Dispensational brethren whereby those of us being called out from the nations (aka, Gentiles) are given a form of citizenship which excludes entry into the Commonwealth of Israel but simultaneously declares we are no longer strangers from the covenants of promise, now have hope and God in the world; and, most definitely, are no longer ALIENS.

ROMANS 9

Paul repeats a similar catalog of divine blessings in Romans 9 wherein he lists those “who are Israelites, to whom pertain the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the service of God, and the promises” (Rom. 9:4). Immediately, Paul in Romans 9 presents justification is not of the flesh (i.e., “we have Abraham as our father” [Matt. 3:9; John 8:39]) does not justify a sinner; but justification is of the “faith of Abraham” in the promise of the Seed, which is Christ. Thus, being “born of the flesh is flesh” but being “born of the Spirit is spirit.”

Thus, Paul contends: “For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor are they all children because they are the seed of Abraham, but, ‘In Isaac your seed shall be called.’” (Rom. 9:6-7).

First, to suggest that the Commonwealth of Israel abides with Israel of the flesh alone, including citizenship therein; then is God, hope, etc., incompatible with the context presented in Ephesians 2, as well as in Romans 9? It is abundantly clear that “not all Israel is of Israel”—that is, to be of Israel, if you would, TRUE ISRAEL, one would have to possess the “faith of Abraham” not just his flesh—one would be anchored in the Promise found in Isaac who Paul declares as the “S”eed—Christ, the Messiah and we are all “sons of Promise, through Isaac” for “In Isaac your seed shall be called” (Rom. 9:7; Gen. 21:12; Heb. 11:18). And: “That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of the promise are counted as the seed” (Rom. 9:8).

The principle is the same today (viz., within the New Testament context). We, from among the nations, even we of Ephraim/Israel who were “swallowed up of the nations” (Hosea 8:7-11) and were no longer “My people, who were not My people, and her beloved, who was not beloved . . . and it shall come to pass in the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not My people,’ there they shall be called sons of the living God.’” (Rom. 9:25-26; Hos. 2:23; 1:10).

We are now brought near, from afar, by the blood of Messiah—into the very Commonwealth of Israel, no longer aliens; no longer “scattered among the nations.” However, within this very Commonwealth of Israel, not all are Israel, who are of Israel. There are, as the Hebrew Scriptures validate, a “mixed multitude” among the Israelites—even the “sons of Korah” who participated in the rebellion of Korah (Numbers 16) were not of Israel, though they most certainly were within the boundaries of the Commonwealth of Israel, if you would. A multitude of illustrations can be made of Israelites who were without faith but were wholly of the flesh—even so, the Ten Northern Tribes who rebelled had naught but evil kings who reigned over them but they were still considered Israelites.

The New Testament speaks of similar language when Jesus declared that the “tares among the wheat” would “grow together” until the end of the age—Matthew 13:24-30. Yes, “not all Israel is of Israel!”

Even so, today, within the Commonwealth of Israel we find those in “name only” who profess but do not possess faith. Are they to be considered as a “mixed multitude” and/or as “tares among the wheat?” I think so. Were not the “sons of Korah” those “to whom pertain the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the service of God, and the promises”? Absolutely! But “without faith, it is impossible to please Him!” (Heb. 11:6—which goes on to list scores of Old Testament saints who possessed faith).

Do we find ourselves as believers in Messiah, Jesus/Yahoshua, within the confines of the Commonwealth of Israel, no longer aliens from the Commonwealth of Israel? Absolutely! Are there among us unbelievers, a mixed multitude, tares, those who are NOT justified by faith alone? Absolutely! These blemishes on our garment, these “spots at our love feasts,” have not experienced the cleansing by the blood of the cross.

Somehow we have forgotten, that “all the promises of God in Him are YES, and in Him AMEN” (2 Cor. 1:20) and that “concerning the election they are beloved for the sake of the father . . . for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable” (Rom. 11:29; Num. 23:19) – in other words, all of the aforementioned divine promises and attributes are still available within the Commonwealth of Israel—TO BE APPROPRIATED THROUGH FAITH alone.

Today’s 30+ million aliens now living in the United States are within, if you would, our Commonwealth, but have not partaken of full citizenship—but have not been “adopted” and/or gone through the process of becoming citizens—in our “spiritual” case that process is one of FAITH ALONE in the Promised “S”eed which is Messiah in His finished work of Deliverance through the blood of His Cross!

Now, what is glorious is this: It is through the blood of Christ that the “middle wall of separation” between Jew (Judah) and the nations (i.e., the “Gentiles” or “those scattered among the Gentiles . . . the rest of mankind” – Acts 15) has been broken down whereby “He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity. . . and He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near . . . NOW, THEREFORE, YOU ARE NO LONGER STRANGERS AND FOREIGNERS, BUT FELLOW CITIZENS WITH THE SAINTS AND MEMBERS OF THE HOUSEHOLD OF GOD” (Eph. 4:14-22, excerpts). [Note:  “Saints” here are both O.T. and N.T. “Saints” – although, below you will find that Dr. J. Vernon McGee, a Dispensationalist, states that “saints” here refers to only N.T. saints, not O.T. saints–keeping Israel and the Church separated.]

Israel’s Commonwealth is OUR COMMONWEALTH. Away with this corrupt notion that we who once were aliens from the Commonwealth of Israel places us outside the bounds of this wondrous Commonwealth of Israel or excludes those to whom the promises were originally given!

To say that today’s Jews have their own Commonwealth (though it be in ruins because of unbelief) and we Christians have our citizenship recorded only in heaven, simply, as I have said before, is but a subtle attempt to theologically ghettoize the Jews just as in the days of the Emperor Constantine. Today’s “Rejection/Replacement” theologies boldly proclaim they are the exclusive Israel of God and in point of fact, today’s Ecclesia is in sum and substance the Commonwealth of Israel—the Jews have been, if you would, expunged, kicked out or broken off as a natural branch, from their own commonwealth; whereas today’s Dispensationalists exclude today’s believers in Jesus from the Commonwealth of Israel and tell us that today’s Jews still have their Commonwealth of Israel but we believers in Jesus have NOTHING to do with the Commonwealth of Israel—brethren, do you see what’s going on here?

Replacement theologies boldly proclaim we have inherited all the promises, the covenants, hope, God, all blessings in Christ Jesus which were, in the main, rejected outright by the unbelieving Jews; whereas, the Dispensationalists at least give the Jews a stake in some form of spiritual renewal and blessing but condescend by enunciating that futurity as wholly inferior to that of the so-called “Church” . . . giving the Jew a separate New Covenant; a separate Resurrection; a separate Gospel to be preached after the Church’s rapture; a separate Wedding Feast since they are a separate Bride of Jehovah; a separate Holy City; a separate Son of David—for it is mandatory that these Jews be kept in their theological-eschatological ghetto apart from the superiority of their erstwhile brethren/saints who (as wild olive branches) occupy the Father’s fortunes apart and afar from the “natural branches” of that, nevertheless, ONE OLIVE TREE (Rom. 11) .

That’s precisely why the Dispensationalist demands a pre-tribulational rapture of the “Church” – leaving Jacob (aka, the Jews) with their “trouble”–whereas, we Christians “escape all these things.” Truly, with “friends like that” who needs enemies? Great! You thought the ovens of Auschwitz were awful–you ain’t seen nothin’ until you go through the Tribulation! But the “great escape” will go forth waving “good bye” just in the nick of time. No, I’m not sorry to sound so sardonic–after all, most Jews feel precisely this way–they’re just too courteous (most of them) to tell us “like it is!” After all, they’re kinda runnin’ short on friends–better to have these “crazy Jesus freaks” than no friends at all! Well, maybe, and hopefully, some of the principles laid down in Commonwealth Theology will give our Jewish friends pause: Not all Bible-believing Christians feel that way.

This GREEN OLIVE TREE (Jeremiah 11:16) is ONE and is both “Lovely and of Good Fruit” (Psalm 51:8; Rom. 11:17). How peculiar, but totally in keeping with the tenor of Dispensationalism, that some among these beloved brethren, now embrace the thought that for the “natural branches” of this GREEN OLIVE TREE to abide in accordance with “rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15) then the “wild branches” must be broken off (although they have been grafted into the GREEN OLIVE TREE) at the Church’s rapture, in order for the “natural branches” to be “grafted in again.” PREPOSTEROUS! This wholly obliterates the work of the Cross and, once again, keeps the Jewish side of Israel, from those wild branches who have been grafted into the GREEN OLIVE TREE!

The Commonwealth of Israel is greater than its earthly component—for it is the recipient of all that is IN CHRIST . . . in the ONE who bridges heaven and earth and brings together as that Ladder of Jacob, the Son of God and Son of Man upon whom the angels ascend and descend (John 1:45-51). Yes, that takes a revelation of WHO HE IS . . . just as Peter was told by Jesus: “Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My ECCLESIA, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it . . . and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” (Matt. 16:17-19).

Do we see it? Heaven and earth is our sphere in which the ASSEMBLY OF CHRIST operates—this is our commonality—this is the Commonwealth of Israel. The “Church in the Wilderness” (or “ECCLESIA in the Wilderness”) (Acts 7:28) has been enlarged with its chief characteristics being the reconciliation through the blood of Messiah of both Jew and those called out from the nations into the Commonwealth of Israel, into the One New Man, so making peace – and THIS “uniting bond of peace between them both” will thwart the “gates of Hades” which shall not prevail against His Assembly!

Yes, the same Assembly, the same Ecclesia (same Greek word as found in the Septuagint—Acts 7:28) but now His Assembly, His Ecclesia, His Commonwealth has taken in a “great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues” who shall “stand before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’” (Rev. 7:9-10) . . . but lest we forget, prior to this heavenly scene upon the earth are the 12 Tribes of Israel wherein, once again, heaven and earth resound in prophetic unity that He has made of the TWO, ONE NEW MAN, SO MAKING PEACE!

DISPENSATIONALISM’S CITIZENSHIP EXCLUDES N.T. BELIEVERS FROM THE COMMONWEALTH OF ISRAEL–DR. J. VERNON McGEE…

*MY COMMENTS IN BRACKETS:  Dr. McGee’s exposition/commentary on Ephesians pp. 237-241; Thru the Bible with J. Vernon McGee, Vol. V, 1 Corinthians–Revelation, Thru The Bible Radio, BOX 7100 PASADENA, CALIFORNIA 91109); to wit [excerpts only]:

McGee: “Aliens from the commonwealth of Israel” or, alienated from the citizenship of Israel.  That is the accurate definition of a Gentile.”

[Note:  Here McGee builds his case for a “heavenly citizenship” – which ipso facto eliminates believers in Jesus from anything “earthly” juxtaposed to heavenly. Those Gentiles, as well as Jews, coming into the heavenly “Assembly of Christ” juxtaposed to the “earthly citizenship” of Israel]

McGee: “The Gentile had no God-given religion as had Israel.  They had no right to go back in the Old Testament and take the promises which God made to Israel and then appropriate them for themselves.”

[Thus, McGee maintains that the “promises” made to Israel were NOT made to Gentiles, the nations – this being the case, “without God in the world, and without hope” were made only to Israel and not to the Gentiles? That’s more of a personal opinion than a proper exegesis? I would conjecture that “hope” and “God” were given to Judah and likewise given to the Nations, the Gentiles–the SAME “God” and the same “hope”.]

McGee:  “We don’t have that right either.  God didn’t make those promises to us.  ‘Strangers from the covenants of promise.’  God had made certain promises to the nation Israel.  The covenants which God made with Israel are still valid, but no Gentile has any right to appropriate them.” (My emphasis.)

[Note:  It is for this reason that the promise of the New Covenant found in Jeremiah 31:31-34 is NOT the same New Covenant inaugurated by Jesus in the Upper Room found in John’s gospel–nearly all Dispensational teachers adhere to this doctrine of dual New Covenants or, as Darby explains, we Christians today experiences only the “spiritual blessings” of the New Covenant but NOT the New Covenant per se–that has exclusivity to only Israel; whereas Lewis Sperry Chafer and to some extent, John Walvoord (Dallas Theological Seminary) affirm Two New Covenants–one to the “Church” inaugurated by Jesus in the Upper Room and one to ALL Israel (Israel being all the 12 Tribes with Ephraim having been swallowed up by Judah during the Babylonian Captivity).]

McGee: “God has promised the children of Israel the land of Israel–all of it.  They will get it someday, but it will be on God’s terms, not their terms . . . Paul reminds the gentile believers that though they were strangers and alienated from God, their present position is infinitely bettered.  They are no more strangers and sojourners (foreigners).  They are now fellow citizens with the saints.  ‘Saints’ is not a reference to Old Testament saints.”

[Note:  This is an arbitrary distinction “made up” by McGee–there is absolutely no heremeneutic which would support such a “distinguished” disconnect between the O.T. saints and the N.T. saints–but McGee seems to find one somewhere.]

McGee:  “Gentile believers are fellow citizens with the New Testament Jewish saints, the other members of the body of Christ.  They belong to a household, not as servants, but as relatives, as members of the family of God.  They are His dear children . . . This is a new relationship a relationship foreign to the Old Testament . . . Now this citizenship is not in Israel . . .

[Note:  It is not, by MeGee’s definition, within the Commonwealth of Israel.]

McGee: “. . . and the earthly Jerusalem, but it is in heaven . . . We belong to heaven at the present time . . . We are ‘built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets'” . . .

[Note:  McGee must keep Israel and the Church utterly separated so he ultimately concludes by arbitrary conjecture that the “prophets” so mentioned are the prophets of the New Testament–not of the O.T. lest there be some sort of continuity of the so-called “community of grace” as espoused by Replacement/Reform theologians.] 

McGee: “This is important.  It does not mean that the apostles and prophets were the foundation but that they personally laid the foundation.  The early church built its doctrine upon that of the apostles . . . Much has been written about the identity of the prophets in verse twenty (Eph. 2:20). Are they Old Testament prophets or New Testament prophets?  The fact that the prophets are in the same classification as apostles without the article the would seem to designate them as New Testament prophets.  I think you will find this confirmed when we get into the third chapter.”

[Note:  One might inquire then, who were the prophets mentioned in 1 Peter 2:10-12?  To wit: “Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you, searching what, or what manner of time, ‘the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow.  To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven–things which angels desire to look into.”]

[Likewise, it is abundantly clear from the Revelation that the conjunction between Apostles AND Prophets connotes the “Apostles” as the N.T. saints and the “Prophets” as the O.T. saints (if you would O.T. in the sense before the Son of Man’s incarnation on this earth); to wit: “Rejoice over her, O heaven, and you holy apostles and prophets, for God has avenged you on her!” (Rev. 18:20).]

[Furthermore, how would McGee interpret John 11:49-51 when John expands the statements by the High Priest Caiaphas by saying:  “Now, this he (Caiaphas) did not say on his own authority; but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation, and not for that nation only, but also that He would gather together in one the children of God who were scattered abroad”?  Who would Jesus gather together in one?  Indeed, the “children of God who were scattered abroad.”  Were these, then, just Jews, the twelve tribes of Israel, those from among the nations who would yet believe?  I find it somewhat ironic that McGee finds that Israel were not considered children when repeatedly we are reminded of the CHILDREN of Israel.  Again, this mandatory separation between the Jews and Christians is intrinsically bound up in the Dispensational narrative.  By keeping the promises made to Israel of the flesh (aka “National Israel”) as one “set of promises” and the other set of promises for the newly-birthed heavenly citizenship of the Church. Thus, McGee is able to keep N.T. believers from placement within the Commonwealth of Israel.  But wouldn’t that of necessity keep believers, as well, from God and from hope?]

[The selectivity espoused within Dispensationalism perpetuates a doctrinal myth which has little or no bearing in Scripture regarding the inclusion of the nations into the Commonwealth of Israel–that’s why it states COMMONWEALTH.  The United Kingdom of Great Britain, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland maintains a COMMONWEALTH of nations and peoples who participate within that COMMONWEALTH.  Nigeria is NOT Great Britain, etc., but it is a member of the BRITISH COMMONWEALTH OF NATIONS.  The Dispensationalists simply must come to terms why the Cross opened up both the knowledge of the Son of God AND the Son of Man to BOTH Jew and Gentile wherein there is no longer Jew and Gentile but ONE NEW MAN SO MAKING PEACE–just as there is ONE COMMONWEALTH OF ISRAEL! Separating out the promises made to Israel found among the “prophets” from the many “great and precious promises” (2 Peter 1:4) and to say they are void of O.T. prophets who repeatedly commended us to the PROMISE of the “new heaven and the new earth” (2 Peter 3:13; Isaiah 65:17; 66:22) is naught but fancy dispensational foot work and a continuance of “splicing and dicing” the Scripture to fit the dispensational narrative. No, the Gentiles who were without promise, now have been afforded the many “great and precious promises” afforded the O.T. saints who were promised as well as we “the new heaven and the new earth.”]

[On the one hand we find that Rejection/Replacement Reform theologians persistently claim that they are not “replacing Israel” they (the Church) simply IS Israel–in point of fact “The Israel of God” and in toto: ALL ISRAEL–i.e., today’s Jews have absolutely nothing to do with Israel; therefore, what’s on the eastern edge of the Mediterranean is a hoax and so are those synagogues and the millions of Khazar (Ashkenazim) ; whereas, Dispensationalism demands that ALL ISRAEL (Rom. 11:26) is comprised of only Jews and, of course, the so-called “Lost 10 tribes” who were incorporated into Judah during the time of the Babylonian Captivity; therefore, any notion that today’s “nations” (i.e., “ethnos”) contain Israelite tribes once assimilated by these nations is preposterous, when in point of fact (according to the ardent Dispensationalists) they were “swallowed up” into Judah and not as it says in Hosea 8:7-8: “Aliens would swallow it up. Israel is swallowed up; now they are among the Gentiles like a vessel in which is no pleasure. For they have gone up to Assyria.”]

ADDENDUM TO THE NEW BOOK: COMMONWEALTH THEOLOGY

ADDENDUM TO THE NEW BOOK: COMMONWEALTH THEOLOGY

The following is the ADDENDUM to my new book, COMMONWEALTH THEOLOGY…An Introduction.  It will provide some of the flavor of this nearly 450 pp. book with Scripture Reference Index and Proper Name Index (persons).  Some of the subject matter can be found on this site; however, much of the material is brand new–it is, I believe, a great read (no humility here) for those interested in this most vital arena of theology–especially, juxtaposed to both Replacement theologies and Dispensationalism; and, for that matter, so-called Identity theologies.  It will be available on Amazon in both written and electronic formats some time around the end of the year, 2017.

It’s a bit risky reading the ADDENDUM, and not having read the body of the text–but this is simply a flavor of what’s in the body of the text…so here goes….

Sincerely, Doug Krieger

A text on this subject is utterly preliminary—the topic is now just beginning to dawn upon the “children of God who were scattered abroad” (John 11:52) . . . a true awakening of the Spirit in the hearts and minds of believers throughout the world.

At times portions of Scripture, we once read, now suddenly come to life as if we have never read them before.  The Spirit of God seems to be brooding upon the depth of these passages, once hidden, now come alive as we fulfill the prophecy of Judah and Ephraim’s restoration: “In the latter days you will consider it” (Jeremiah 30:24).

Thus, before we can conclude this text, new light shines upon old passages with greater meaning and even profound significance.  Jesus had just performed the astonishing resurrection of Lazarus in John 11:38-44, which gained the attention of multitudes for: “Then many of the Jews who had come to Mary, and had seen the things Jesus did, believed in Him . . . but some of them went away to the Pharisees and told them the things Jesus did” (John 11:45-46).

It was at this juncture, just prior to His Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem on that Palm Sunday, 10 Nisan, that the plot to kill Jesus was hatched by the “chief priests and the Pharisees” who gathered a council and inquired: “What shall we do?  For this Man works many signs . . . if we let Him alone like this, everyone will believe in Him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and nation” (John 11:47-48).

It is here that the most peculiar statements made by Caiaphas, the High Priest, are spoken and later interpreted by John to be profoundly prophetic; to wit, after the aforementioned statements made in the plotting council:

“You know nothing at all, nor do you consider that it is expected for us that one man should die for the people, and not that the whole nation should perish” (John 11:49-50).

John then follows this statement of Caiaphas with:

“Now this he did not say on his own authority, but being high priest that year he PROPHESIED that Jesus would die for the nation” (John 11:51).

John alerts us to the fact that the High Priest Caiaphas was literally prophesying—not on his own authority but by the authority vested in him by God Almighty!  Yes, “Jesus would die for the nation” of the Jews, Judea.  Moreover, John expands the prophecy to our amazement by concluding his commentary as follows:

“And, not for that nation only, but also that He would GATHER TOGETHER IN ONE the children of God who were scattered abroad(John 11:52).

Most of us are familiar with this passage concerning the prophecy of Caiaphas; perhaps not realizing that John interpreted his statements as altogether prophetic—that Jesus would die for Israel; and many of us have seen that death not only for the nation of the Jews but for us all . . . but where did we get that impression?

Well, from the passage in John 11:52 which we just read.  But examine the second half of Caiaphas’ prophecy more closely and you will discover that the death of Jesus would “gather together IN ONE the children of God who were scattered abroad.”

One could interpret this to mean only those Jews so scattered abroad; but in the context of John’s belief that “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son” (John 3:16), the “net” extended far beyond the nation of Judea but to the uttermost parts of that world; yet, “He would gather together in one the children of God who were scattered abroad” held within it a more powerful restoration between Judah and Ephraim in that “the children of God scattered abroad” could readily entail the same meaning found in James 1:1:  “James a bondservant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad:  Greetings.”

The recognition by Caiaphas of those “children of God scattered abroad” held within it this most significant understanding: These children of God constituted the very Twelve Tribes of Israel; and, in particular, there had to be an understanding that the “lost sheep of the House of Israel” (the so-called Ten Lost Tribes) were most definitely in view, as well as Jews throughout the known world.

Before we go back into Acts 15 and the Council at Jerusalem convened to determine what this “calling out from among the nations” a “people for His Name” actually meant . . . let us amplify just who were these “children of God scattered abroad” juxtaposed to the “nation only” (i.e., Judah/Judea).

It sure sounds like God’s intention is to GATHER TOGETHER IN ONE the Children of God WITH “that nation”—for Caiaphas prophesied, not on his own authority, but by divine intervention he uttered these words.

Clues abound as Jesus, knowing that He was to lay down His life for the sins of the world, does a most significant and, I believe, prophetic move after the plot to kill Him is hatched:

“Therefore Jesus no longer walked openly among the Jews, but went from there into the country near the wilderness, to a city called EPHRAIM, and there remained with His disciples” (John 11:54).

This rather obscure passage is all the more puzzling in that most of us know that it was from Jericho that Jesus made His initial move into Jerusalem.  Here he met Zacchaeus, who was a “chief tax collector” (Luke 19:1-10), and from thence to “Bethany at the house of Simon the leper” with Lazarus and Mary and the account of Mary anointing the Lord for His burial (Mark 14:3-9); and from thence to Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, where Jesus sent two disciples to fetch the donkey, and a colt with her, fulfilling Isaiah 62:11 and Zechariah 9:9 (Matt. 21:21-25).

The Jericho, Bethany, Bethphage, Jerusalem accounts completely omit the City of Ephraim in the other gospels—but John includes this fascinating account into Jesus’ travels AFTER the prophecy of Caiaphas.  Just prior to Jesus’ Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem from the aforementioned locations, He took the “twelve disciples aside on the road” (“going up to Jerusalem”) and said to them, ‘Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priests and to the scribes; and they will condemn Him to death, and deliver Him to the Gentiles to mock and to scourge and to crucify . . . And the third day He will rise again” (Matthew 20:17-19).

In 2 Chronicles 13:19 we read of this obscure city/village called Ephrain (“with its villages”) wherein the marginal references to the place is called “Ephron” mentioned in Joshua 15:9.  However, it is the context in which this Ephraim/Ephrain/Ephron is mentioned in 2 Chronicles 13 that discloses its importance to the narrative given in John 11:54 wherein initially Jesus went from Bethany (John 11:1—where the resurrection of Lazarus was performed); the plot hatched (Caiaphas’ prophecies); and then to Ephraim near the wilderness.

As the crow flies, the city of Ephraim was 12 miles due north from Bethany and, likewise, 12 miles southeast to Jericho, with Jericho 12 miles due east of Bethany—forming a perfect equilateral triangle; with Bethany several miles from Jerusalem.  These 36 miles could provide a fascinating link that the Eternal God (360° = 36 as a “resemblance/fractal”) was obviously involved in this triangulation; likewise, Ephraim reflects all the “children of God” to be “GATHERED IN ONE” – Jericho is representative of Babylon the Great and Bethany, the resurrection—the House of Bread (the staff of Life).  Jesus is giving His life for the Oneness of His people (John 17); for the destruction of Babylon the Great; through the Power of His Resurrection (Life from the Dead).

Again, what was going on in 2 Chronicles 13 in the first place?  Why was the City of Ephraim mentioned?  King Rehoboam of Judah (successor to King Solomon, his son) had originally attempted to “lay a heavy yoke” (2 Chron. 10:14) upon the Ten Northern Tribes, now under the kingship of Jeroboam.  King Rehoboam (meaning, “the people are enlarged”) reigned for 17 years after the death of King Solomon’s United Kingdom (2 Chronicles 12:13-16).  The kingdom split—was torn asunder; “and there were wars between Rehoboam and Jeroboam all their days” (2 Chron. 12:15).

Now, after the death of King Rehoboam, his son, in the eighteenth year of King Jeroboam, King Abijah, became king over Judah (2 Chron. 13:1).  After three years of King Abijah’s reign there was war, once again, between Judah and Israel (2 Chron. 13:2).  This was no meager conflict.  Some 800,000 (Jeroboam’s forces) were pitted against 400,000 of King Abijah’s forces (2 Chron. 13:3).

King Abijah stood upon the promises of the Lord given to King David and told King Jeroboam when he stood upon the “mountains of Ephraim” and declared:

“Hear me, Jeroboam and all Israel:  Should you not know that the LORD God of Israel gave the dominion over Israel to David forever, to him and his sons, by a covenant of salt?  Yet Jeroboam and son of Nebat, the servant of Solomon the son of David, rose up and rebelled against his lord . . . and now you think to withstand the kingdom of the LORD, which is in the hand of the sons of David; and you are a great multitude, and with you are the gold calves which Jeroboam made for you as gods” (2 Chron. 13:4-8).

Suffice it to say, some 500,000 Israelites perished in the battle—even with the ambush set by Jeroboam (2 Chron. 13:13-18) “because they [Judah] relied on the LORD God of their fathers” (2 Chron. 13:18).  So great was the victory that “Jeroboam did not recover strength again in the days of Abijah; and the LORD struck him, and he died” (2 Chron. 13:20).

Compare, US deaths from World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and all three Wars on Terrorism (Persian Gulf War, Iraq War [on-going], and the War in Afghanistan) do not exceed the 500,000 deaths wrought upon Jeroboam’s Israel (viz., all US War dead since World War I total approx. 450,000).

It is here we learn that “Abijah pursued Jeroboam and took cities from him:  Bethel with its villages, Jeshanah with its villages, and Ephrain (i.e., the city of Ephraim) with its villages” (2 Chron. 13:19).  Thus, the City of Ephraim fell under Judah’s jurisdiction.

Somewhat interesting are the meaning of these cities—Bethel (the House of God and where Jacob/Israel saw the vision of the ladder); Jeshanah meaning “old” (“to rebuild it [the tabernacle of David] as in the days of old”—Amos. 9:11) and Ephraim, meaning “expansion.”  Judah had taken cities having profound meaning:  God was after the House of God (Bethel), “as in the days of old” (Jeshanah) and expanding with Ephraim.

The “sons of David” were the beneficiaries of this immediate conquest—Ephraim was now bound with Judah; therefore, is it not a foregone conclusion that Jesus’ visit to a city called Ephraim, as the very Lion of the Tribe of Judah, was a visitation of major prophetic significance, for “He would gather together in one the children of God who were scattered abroad” upon the mountains of Ephraim (Israel).

This is all the more made plain to us knowing that it was King Abijah of Judah (meaning “Jehovah is Father”) who has embraced both the House of Judah and the house of Ephraim (if we see in King Abijah’s taking of the City of Ephraim in this manner).  Moreover, and even though it was through the rebellion of Jeroboam (Ephraim—a “type” of the Prodigal son) whose name (Jeroboam) means “May the people increase”); surely, it was through Ephraim that we hear in Hosea:

“Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured or numbered.  And it shall come to pass in the place where it was said to them, ‘You are not My people,’ there it shall be said to them, ‘You are sons of the living God.’ Then the children of Judah and the children of Israel shall be gathered together, and appoint for themselves one head; and they shall come up out of the land, for great will be the day of Jezreel!  Say to your brethren, ‘My people,’ and to your sisters, ‘Mercy is shown.’” (Hosea 1:10-112; 2:1). 

Furthermore, as we revisit Acts 15:14-21 we see that James, the apostle, concludes the Jerusalem Council’s prophetic declaration, giving meaning to the purpose of God’s plan whereby “God at the first visited the Gentiles (i.e., the “nations”) to take out (Greek lambano – Strong’s #2983 and #1537 – “to take out of” – in contrast to asking – to “seize or remove”) of them a people for His name” (Acts 15:14).  James then amplifies this people from among the Nations so taken and/or seized/removed by substantiated the phenomenon in citing the prophets Amos and Obadiah; to wit:

And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written:  ‘After this I will return and will rebuild the tabernacle of David, which has fallen down; I will rebuild its ruins, and I will set it up, so that the rest of mankind may seek the LORD, even all the Nations (Gentiles) who are called by My name, says he LORD who does all these things” (Acts 15:15-17).

It is here that the prophetic allusions to the “rest of mankind” are juxtaposed to the “Tabernacle of David.”  In other words, we ostensibly have at least four distinct entities.

  • Those of the Nation of Judah for whom Jesus died (John 11:50-51).
  • Those being called out from among the nations as the very “children of God” (those “scattered abroad” as the remnant of Ephraim) – (John 11:52; Acts 15:14-16; Amos 9:11 James 1:1).
  • The “rest of mankind . . . even all the Gentiles (those among the nations) who are called by My name” (likewise a remnant—the remnant of Edom) (Acts 15:17; Amos 9:12; Obadiah 1); and . . .
  • Those of Edom who are NOT the “remnant of Edom” (the rest of mankind) pending the judgment by the One in Whose heart is “the day of vengeance . . . and the year of My redeemed has come” (Isaiah 63:1, 4, Obadiah 1).

It is imperative that we examine “the rest of mankind”—for its “sound” is distinct from the remnant of Ephraim . . . so, it would appear from Amos 9:12:

“That they may possess the remnant of Edom (“Edom” is translated as “mankind” in the LXX or Septuagint—the Greek version of the Hebrew Scriptures translated by some 70 Jewish scholars commencing in Alexandria, Egypt in the Third Century BCE and completed in 132 BCE), and all the Gentiles (Nations) who are called by My name” (Amos. 9:12).

Obadiah follows Amos and speaks of the coming judgment upon Edom—whereas Amos makes it clear that the LORD shall possess the remnant of Edom, the “rest of mankind.”

“Oh, how Esau (Edomites are of Esau’s linage) shall be searched out!  How his hidden treasures shall be sought after! . . . Will I not in that day, says the LORD, even destroy the wise men from Edom and understanding from the mountains of Esau?  . . . To the end that everyone from the mountains of Esau may be cut off by slaughter . . . For the day of the LORD upon all the nations is near; as you have done, it shall be done to you . . . the house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame; but the house of Esau shall be stubble . . . and no survivor shall remain of the house of Esau . . . the South shall possess the mountains of Esau, and the Lowland shall possess Philistia . . . they shall possess the fields of Ephraim and the fields of Samaria . . . then deliverers shall come to mount Zion to judge the mountains of Esau, and the kingdom shall be the LORD’s” (Excerpts from Obadiah 1).

Previously, in chapter 17 we expounded upon the incredible story of the household of Obed-Edom—the “Servant of Edom” and how the Ark of the Covenant blessed his house; and later, Obed-Edom became a gatekeeper and harpist at the Tabernacle of David.  surely, this foresees the “remnant of Edom” who would be joined to Judah-Ephraim.

The “rest of mankind” (Edom) is the remnant above and beyond that of Ephraim; however, the judgment of the nations is of the highest priority in the Day of the LORD—but, again, He will redeem not only His Remnant from among Ephraim (i.e., “all the children of God”) but from Edom, the “rest of mankind”!

Make no mistake about it—first the “Redeemed of the LORD” are taken out and then commences His judgment upon the nations, Edom:

“Go through, go through the gates!  Prepare the way for the people; build up, build up the highway!  Take out the stones, lift up a banner for the peoples!  Indeed the LORD has proclaimed to the end of the world:  Say to the daughter of Zion, ‘Surely your salvation is coming; behold, His reward is with Him, and His work before Him.’  And they shall call them The Holy People, the Redeemed of the LORD; and you shall be called Sought Out, A City Not Forsaken” (Isaiah 62:10-12).

AND

Who is this who comes from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah, this One who is glorious in His apparel, traveling in the greatness of His strength? —”I who speak in righteousness, mighty to save.”  Why is Your apparel red, and Your garments like one who treads in the winepress?  “I have trodden the winepress alone, and from the peoples no one was with Me.  For I have trodden them in My anger, and trampled them in My fury; their blood is sprinkled upon My garments, and I have stained all My robes, for the day of vengeance is in My heart, and the year of My redeemed has come” (Isaiah 63:1-4).

The “great day of His wrath has come” (Rev. 6:17) upon Edom (aka “mankind”) in that “great and terrible Day of the Lord”—upon the nations—yet has He taken out of the “rest of mankind” (Acts 15:17)—the Remnant of Edom and those of the Remnant of Ephraim to declare His glory!

This spectacular scenario is fraught through and through with divine meaning . . . metaphorical, yes, but literal in its prophetic import.  It is for us to discern the significance of these signs given to us and the salvation of the Lord for the House of Judah, the Remnant of Ephraim—the “gathering together in one the children of God who were scattered abroad” and what is known as the “rest of mankind”—”the remnant of Edom” as well as those of Edom who refuse all His beneficence–for the ultimate judgment is coming upon the nations for the sake of His elect, His “called out ones” – His EKKLESIA.

The operative question now is:  What shall we then do?  It is the LORD Himself who brings these things to our consideration and remembrance—it is He who calls out from among the nations a people, who were not a people, but now are the sons of the Living God.  It is He who units the Two Sticks, anoints the Two Witnesses and brings the “sheep of His pasture” into UNITY and the restoration of the BROTHERHOOD.

Let us cooperate with the Lord of Glory in the pursuit of the “gathering together in one the children of God who were scattered abroad” and, as well, participate in the redemption of the remnant of Edom—the rest of mankind.  “Lord, give us a vision of what You want in these latter days!”

Commonwealth Theology: The Remedy for a Worn-Out and Broken Constantinian Church-State System.

Commonwealth Theology: The Remedy for a Worn-Out and Broken Constantinian Church-State System.

Commonwealth Theology: A Remedy for the Worn-Out and Broken Constantinian Church-State System.

2,900-years ago a massive family feud erupted in the nation of Israel. The Breach of Jeroboam saw ten of the tribes rebel. They seceded from the sovereignty they had in the Throne of David in the Jewish House of Judah. In the absence of that sovereign connection to Israel through the royal house of Judah there has been jealousy and untold grief on both sides ever since.

Is there a solution to this dilemma? Yes there is. Throughout the Old Testament prophecies and in the New Covenant manifest in Christ Jesus there is a wonderful promise of the reunion and restoration of all God’s covenant people. This can only happen under Messiah and that by His personal indwelling Presence in the lives of His covenant people..  And as we see laid out in Ephesians 2:11-13 the blood of Messiah is the key to the Commonwealth of Israel even as He is the doorway of the sheepfold, the one and only means of salvation for the entire Congregation of Israel. The blood of Christ in the New Covenant is the portal through which the lost House of Israel, the ten tribes and their companions in Messiah regain not only their salvation, but also the sovereign covering they lost 2900 years ago back at the Breach of Jeroboam.

If only the people Western Christendom, the wayward House of Israel in the West, knew that. Unfortunately do not. It seems they are in partial blindness to this pathway to restoration even as their Jewish brethren from the Houseof Judah  are partially blind to the first coming of Messiah as the Suffereing Servant, Israel’s promised Sacrifice Lamb.

So as holy history moves on toward the end-time drama Christians in  Western Christendom are becoming increasingly nervous. They becoming fearful of losing their national sovereignty and their freedom in any of a number of ways. They worry about the principalities and powers of this world unleashing a pagan, Islamic, Edomite, or New World Order Illuminist takeover. In this state of anxiety it is not surprising to see them becoming more politically focused and drawing closer to the princes of the West. Christians are tipping their hat more and more to the political princes that they hope might offer them some political and temporal protection. And so it is that we now find ourselves increasingly drawn into a state of subjection to these principalities and powers, the angelic rulers of the second heaven and their hierarchical human underlings here below.

Hosea prophesied about this. And when we look around us we see that Christians in the West are concerned about unfolding events. They see a “deep state” that is not friendly or in keeping with the former culture of church and state.  As such, Christian believers are becoming politically fearful, politically needy, and politically vulnerable. The Western nations are as Gomer with her succession of lovers, each one worse than the former one. They are unaware of their former sovereignty in Israel through the scepter of Judah. Nor are they aware of the promise of that sovereignty being restored under Jesus/Yeshua, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.  Like the Shulamite in the Song of Solomon they are out there in the political marketplaces of this world seeking a political protector, a “defender of the faith”.  So not surprisingly, they are highly vulnerable to the carnal politico-religious offerings and the manipulations thereof.

And so as we see, Dominion theology and the Kingdom Now mindset is gaining ground among Christians instead of the “mind of Christ”. We see these religious spirits at work inside the Church in association with a certain politicizing and militarizing of the Christian minds. All this is changing the way we think and the way we express our Christian faith and the way we act with respect to our patriotic loyalty.

The enmeshing of politics with religion always was complicated.  While we thank God for the godly heritage we cherish in our nations, we also recognize the dark side rising up as well. That is the way it is. As we read the pages of Bible Prophecy, we know that the “church and state” collusion that began under Constantine 1,700 years ago at the Council of Nicaea was flawed from the beginning. So we know that it will not last forever.

As the future 70th Week of Daniel brings in the final 7 years of this age, Biblical Christians and Messianic believers from all around the world will be without a political protector. They will be as the Woman of Revelation 12.

The saints will eventually enter into a time of trial and travail. The woman of Revelation 12 will enter into her prescribed and prophesied time of confinement. But as we see, eventually she breaks forth into the Light and the glory of the Father.

Even in a time of thick darkness, her Light will come. Her Light will come in the manner of a super-nova when even in a time of thick darkness and heaviness a new star breaks forth in an explosion of light. This is the manner in which the Woman of wonder delivers the man-child. All this will be happening with the return of Messiah in the Resurrection-Rapture at the climax of the age.

So we must expect that the saints will be put to the test, even as they fall back to the last redoubt.  There, at the last, the born-again Biblical Christians will make their final stand. At that point the contest of the age will collapse into a spiritual battle, even an information war. As Daniel was told in Chapter 12, the military war will be lost, even as Jacob lost the wrestling match with the Angel.  Notwithstanding, the information war will be won. The testimony of Jesus is the very essence and spirit of prophecy.  All this will happen in the end-time drama, in the final witness, as the saints go up to witness before kings and rulers on behalf of their Messiah.  Therefore, at the end, the ultimate war, the spiritual war, will be won.  All this will all play out precisely as Zechariah was told in Zechariah chapter 4. The victory will come,

“Not by might, (military), nor by power, (politics),
But by My Spirit saith the LORD-Yehovah-Almighty Everlasting God.”

This final action will all happen under the spiritual covering and anointing of Joseph and Benjamin; the sons of the beloved Rachel. That is a huge unfolding story.

Right now, Dominion theology is changing the way we “do church.” In the absence of the true dual anointing of King and Priest under Messiah, which is in the Order of Melchizedek, we see a certain churchy striving for “Kingdom Now.” Christians seek a viable “Defender of the Faith,” even as the Lady of Shalott left her castle and sought her champion, Air Lancelot. (See this article at Endtime Pilgrim.)

There is a real worry here among Christians as a whole. It is now becoming increasingly apparent that even in Western Christendom the world system is dead-set against Judeo-Christian people. They want those pesky people out of the way as they seek to forge their Utopian New World Order.

Fear is the key to the bad even as faith is the key to the good.  With the fear comes a certain anger.  Even so, as we see, Kingdom Now and Dominion Theology is becoming pugnacious and is morphing into a more militant ecumenism role. More and more we see established Christianity behaving as the bullying harlot and expanding in that populist role. Dominion Theology, pandering to the fears and riding upon the swelling anger of the flesh, is pushing aside sound Biblical teaching. As we see, it is no longer making it a priority to nurture the true and genuine Spirit-filled life.

After the Nineteenth Century’s wars, certain princes rose up, like Bismarck, Mazzinni, and Garibaldi who sought to consolidate the various European principalities, duchies, and fiefdoms into the nations of Europe. At that time the Norwegian painter, Peter Nicolas Arbo became aware of this. There is the spirit of that carnal striving that is powering this ongoing drive for dominion among European people. There is an ancient legend in the West, a collective vision of hordes of riders thundering across the sky. Arbo captured this wild impulse for Dominion in his painting, “The Wild Hunt,” cir 1870s. (See this article.)

Also, Johnny Cash’s take on the theme.

GHETTOIZING THE JEWS – PART 2 . . . A Theological Treatise

GHETTOIZING THE JEWS – PART 2 . . . A Theological Treatise

More Issues Related to the Two Gospels of Dispensationalism

The veiled references to the rapture by Miles J. Stanford allude to the fact that after the Church’s Rapture the “gospel of the kingdom” espoused under the LAW as found in the four gospels will once again be extended to the world, through the Jews, who take up the mantle and proclaim a gospel which is, as well, based on the blood of Jesus but with different results—the Wife of Jehovah is produced, not the Bride of Christ.

This complete separation of National Israel from the “Elect, called out from among the nations” (the EKKLESIA) ultimately projects ANOTHER GOSPEL other than the Gospel of the Grace of God which the aforesaid Dispensationalists declare can only produce the EKKLESIA, aka, the Church, the One Body, the New Creation, the One New Man, so making peace.  How is that?

Well, again, Paul’s own writings inject a severe denunciation of preaching ANOTHER GOSPEL other than that which he delivered—so clarified to the Galatian brethren—however, after the pre-trib rapture of the Church, another Gospel is most definitely replacing the Gospel of the Grace of God; to wit:

I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed (Gal. 1:6-9).

How is it, therefore, in the minds of Dispensationalists, that a “retrograde gospel” is preached after the Church’s rapture and, no less, is preached by zealous Jews who apparently do NOT generate the same goals as the Gospel of the Grace of God revealed through Paul, but establishes a gospel that was once extended to National Israel and “rejected by the Jews” but will once again be extended after the Church’s rapture—thereby keeping the Jews/Israel GHETTOIZED – using the “heavenly position of the Church” juxtaposed to the “earthly role of National Israel”?

To these Dispensationalists there is no LINKAGE or nigh none whereby ALL ISRAEL shall be delivered, in that the Jews themselves constitute ALL ISRAEL and the Church is that mystery hidden in Messiah before the world began having absolutely nothing to do with Israel – just the opposite of what the Replacement theologians suggest–i.e., the Church completely subsumes ALL ISRAEL; whereas, the Jews of today constitute ALL ISRAEL in the theological schema of Dispensationalism.

Dr. John Walvoord – Keeping Israel Separated from the Church

Consequently, the Dispensationalists must keep Israel and the Church wholly apart—even through eternity?  That’s what John Walvoord suggests; somehow kept apart from the Church; even in the New Jerusalem:

In this city [i.e., the New Jerusalem] , as brought out, both Jew and Gentile will be inhabiting the city along with the saints of all other ages.  Significant is the fact, however, that a Jew is not automatically recognized as belonging to the church and the church is not automatically related to Israel.  The distinctions between the racial Jew and the church composed of both Jews and Gentiles is maintained in this revelation (P. 638 – “Every Prophecy of the Bible” by Dr. John Walvoord).

Thus, the Dispensational model maintains a strict separation both in issues of the “gospel” (with its peculiar “gospel of the kingdom” preached after the Church’s rapture by the Jews) and during the Millennial reign of the Son of David which Walvoord states is NOT the Glorified Groom, the Son of Man, for He is above the earth; therefore, Walvoord suggests the following:

Though Israel will enjoy the blessings of being regathered to her ancient land and under the special rule of Christ, the rest of the world will also experience the rule of Christ as King of kings.  The nation of Israel, however, will also have the benefits of the rule of David resurrected from the dead as a regent of Christ (Jer. 30:9; Ezek. 34:23-24; 37:24-25).” (P. 628 – Every Prophecy of the Bible – John D. Walvoord)

Walvoord is forced to disclose that this David is NOT the Son of Man because during the Millennium on the earth the Glorified Son of Man is the Groom with His Bride, the Church, orbiting around the earth in that the New Jerusalem is the Bride of Messiah and does not interfere with the Holy District as disclosed by the vision of such in Ezekiel 40-48; to wit:

If the new Jerusalem is in existence throughout the millennial reign of Christ, it is possible that it is a satellite city suspended over the earth during the thousand-year reign of Christ as the dwelling place of resurrected and translated saints who also have access to the earthly scene. This would help explain an otherwise difficult problem of the dwelling place of resurrected and translated beings on the earth during a period in which men are still in their natural bodies and living ordinary lives. If so, the new Jerusalem is withdrawn from the earthly scene in connection with the destruction of the old earth, and later comes down to the new earth. The possibility of Jerusalem being a satellite city over the earth during the millennium is not specifically taught in any scripture and at best is an inference based on the implication that it has been in existence prior to its introduction in Revelation 21. (Revelation 21, John F. Walvoord, @ http://walvoord.com/article/279 Retrieved on 10.01.2017) (Note:  This is precisely why the commencement of the “New Heaven and New Earth” as proposed in 2 Peter 3:10-13 must take place AFTER the Millennial Reign and not at the commencement of the Millennial Reign in the minds of most Dispensationalists.  The Dispensationalists see a GAP of 1,000 years in 2 Peter 3:10 and 2 Peter 3:12-13…where, quite frankly, no such GAP exists!)

But, ALAS!  Yet, shall the Son of David reign upon the Throne of David:

Jeremiah’s and Ezekiel’s prophecies should be understood this way: the Jews would one day return to their own country, their yoke of slavery would be removed, their fellowship with God would be restored, and God would provide them with a King of His own choosing. This King would, in some way, be like King David of old. These passages can refer to none other than the long-awaited Messiah, the “Servant of the Lord” (cf. Isaiah 42:1). The Jews sometimes referred to the Messiah as “David” because it was known the Messiah would come from David’s lineage. The New Testament often refers to Jesus as the “Son of David” (Matthew 15:22Mark 10:47).

There are other reasons, besides being the Son of David, that the Messiah is referred to as “David.” King David in the Old Testament was a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22), he was an unlikely king of God’s own choosing, and the Spirit of God was upon Him (1 Samuel 16:12–13). David, then, is a type of Christ (a type is a person who foreshadows someone else). Another example of this kind of typology is Elijah, whose ministry foreshadowed that of John the Baptist to the extent that Malachi called John “Elijah” (Malachi 4:5; cf. Luke 1:17Mark 9:11–13).” (Will David reign with Jesus in the Millennial Kingdom? @ https://www.gotquestions.org/David-kingdom.html on 10.01.2017.

In this same exposition Walvoord somehow is able to recognize that the very description of the New Jerusalem (but only in its eternal state—NOT during the Millennium) appears to provide distinction between Israel/Judah and/or all of the 12 Tribes included as ALL ISRAEL and the Church, still, on the one hand wholly distinct but in eternal union . . . Walvoord:

It is noteworthy, however, that not only are the twelve apostles represented but also the twelve tribes of Israel. This should settle beyond any question the matter of the inclusion of Old Testament saints. It apparently is the divine intent to represent to the reader that the new Jerusalem will have among its citizens not only the church, or saints of the present age, but also Israel, or saints of other ages, whether in the Old Testament or in the tribulation period. Later on there is mention also of Gentiles. The careful expositor, therefore, on the one hand will not confuse Israel and the church as if one were the other. On the other hand, he will not deny to both their respective places of privilege in God’s program. The anticipation of Hebrews 12:22-24 is specifically that the heavenly Jerusalem will include not only God and an innumerable company of angels but also the general assembly and church of the firstborn, that is, the saints of the present age and the spirits of just men made perfect, that is, all other saints. As far as this scripture is concerned, there is only one eternal resting place for the saints, and that is the new Jerusalem. All saints, therefore, must necessarily participate in the city, just as many of them did also in the millennial scene without destroying the distinction between different companies of saints. (Ibid.)

Thus, there are TWO HOLY CITIES during the Millennial Reign of the Son of David – the suspended ionospheric New Jerusalem (i.e., the Bride of Messiah with her Groom) – and the Holy District seen by Ezekiel (Ezk. 40-48) upon the earth for the Jews/Israel.  No mention is made of John 1:41-51 whereupon Nathaniel’s declaration that Jesus was the Messiah, the Son of God invoked the revelation of Jacob’s Ladder to be the Son of Man bridging the dimensional divide between Heaven and Earth:  “You shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man” (John 1:51) – herein lies a most profound truth wherein as Son of God, Messiah, brought God to man, and as Son of Man He brings man into God!  Simultaneously, the vision of the “heavenly/earthly ladder” (aka, Jacob’s Ladder) is an astonishing picture of bringing Jewish Israel (the so-called “earthly people”) together with the EKKLESIA (the so-called “heavenly people”)–if we were to use the Dispensationalist’s nomenclature.

More Issues Related to Two Brides

The Dispensationalist conceives of Two Holy Cities and Two Brides, as well, so that the Jews/Israel is wedded to the Wife of Jehovah and the Bride of Christ (the New Testament saints—aka, the Church) is wedded to her Messiah; again, Arnold Fruchtenbaum:

There are certain key distinctions in the Scriptures. If one does not understand these biblical distinctions, the Scriptures become contradictory because one part of the Bible says “you may” and another says “you may not” concerning the very same subject. One of these key biblical distinctions is the one between Israel and the Church. In the Bible, Israel is represented as the “Wife of Jehovah,” whereas the Church is represented as the “Bride of the Christ (Messiah).” A failure to maintain that distinction will only result in a misinterpretation of what the Scriptures teach.

Fruchtenbaum continues:

While the distinction between Israel and the Church is maintained in various ways throughout the Bible, this is one of the more picturesque. However, if one makes the Wife of Jehovah (Israel) and the Bride of the Messiah (the Church) one and the same thing, he is faced with numerous contradictions because of the different descriptions given. Only when the two separate entities are seen: Israel as the Wife of Jehovah and the Church as the Bride of the Messiah, do all such contradictions vanish. (JUL 8, 2009 – The Wife of Jehovah and the Bride of Messiah – By Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum @ Bible Prophecy Blog, Retrieved on 10.01.2017

By structuring in the name of “rightly dividing the Word of Truth” the Dispensationalists have orchestrated a virtual theological ghetto for the Jews of National Israel wherein there are TWO GOSPELS, TWO BRIDES, TWO NEW COVENANTS, TWO HOLY CITIES, TWO SEPARATED ADMINISTRATIVE SPHERES DURING THE MILLENNIUM, TWO RESURRECTIONS (and more); and, alas, the postponement of the New Heavens and the New Earth until the Eschaton in order to keep Israel and the Church separated during the entire Millennial Reign.

The charge by Miles J. Stanford regarding the incompatibility of these two gospels with their subsequent Two New Covenants—the one for National Israel and the other for the EKKLESIA–utterly complicates itself after the Church’s pre-tribulational rapture designed to keep, once again, the Jews ghettoized from ALL ISRAEL.  Israel cannot be defined by any other definition than the Jews of the world—now awaiting prophetic fulfillment and divine deliverance so that ALL ISRAEL will be delivered (Rom. 11:24-27)—this means all the Jewish remnant upon the Second Coming of the DELIVERER.

The “Mystery of the Church” revealed through Paul, abides aloft from Earth’s commonality, from the Jews – even the SALVATION wrought by the Lamb of God is separated from the “gospel of the Kingdom” preached AFTER the church’s pre-trib rapture – it is no longer “so great a salvation” but, though based upon the blood (however impossible that can be construed), it still is NOT the same salvation that alone can produce the Bride of Messiah – at best, after the Rapture what is produced via the “gospel of the kingdom” are Temple Servants who come out of the Great Tribulation, and who shall serve in the Temple during the 1,000-year Millennial Reign of the Son of David.

The great Dispensationalist expositor, Donald Grey Barnhouse, commentates upon Revelation 7 and the “Great Multitude” who arrive in glory AFTER the pre-tribulational rapture of the Church takes place—not even these martyrs are worthy to be members of the Bride of Messiah but will assist with National Israel as “Temple Servants” during the earthly Millennial reign – to wit:

As their calling and service differ from ours, so does their destiny.  We, as the bride with the Bridegroom, sit upon the throne to rule and reign with the Lord of Glory.  Our destiny is said to be that of rulers and judges.  We are to be kings and priests (1 Cor. 6:2, 3; 1 Pet. 2:9; Rev. 1:6).  The 144,000 are to be the glorious bodyguard (Jews from the 12 Tribes of Israel), the retinue of the Lamb, following Him whithersoever He goeth (Rev. 14:4).  The destiny of the Gentile multitude, however, is that of TEMPLE SERVANTS.  Any reader of the book of Ezekiel knows, of course, that the Temple will be the central earthly feature of the millennial reign.  Here we are told that the great multitude which has come out of the tribulation period is to carry on the priestly work of that Temple” (P.153, Revelation 7:9-17, Revelation, an Expositional Commentary, Donald Grey Barnhouse, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, MI). (My emphasis.)

The extremity of ghettoizing the Jews—keeping the House of Judah from the House of Ephraim (if you would) – and/or keeping the “natural branches” (i.e., the Jews) from being grafted into the same Olive Tree (actually, “their own olive tree”) now occupied by the wild branches into the singular ROOT THAT BORE BOTH OF THEM . . . (Romans 11:17-24) . . . has reached unbelievable efforts by some pretribulationists who now contemplate that the “wild olive branches” (“the elect from among the nations”) may have to be broken off via the Church’s rapture in order to “make room” for the grafting in again of National Israel—don’t laugh . . . this is a metaphorical disaster!

Two Resurrections

It may come as a theological shock to some believers that the “Resurrection of the Just” does NOT include O.T. saints; nor does it include the less-than-so-great-a-salvation tribulation saints; only the members of the Bride of Messiah, the EKKLESIA, the Church, make it at the initial Resurrection/Rapture–the O.T. saints are not, at this time resurrected–even though it may appear there is but one resurrection of the just as found in Revelation 20:4-6:

And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.  Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years (Rev. 20:4-6).

Arnold Fruchtenbaum links the Marriage Super of the Lamb with the omission of the O.T. saints at the initial resurrection of the Bride of Messiah:

At the time of the marriage of the Lamb (Rev. Rev. 19:7+), there is only one group of saints who have already been resurrected to receive their glorified bodies: the Church at the Rapture prior to the Tribulation. It would seem premature for other saints which have not yet been resurrected to be included in the marriage with the Lamb [NOTE:  Strictly an opinion by Fruchtenbaum.]. Nor will they return with Him as part of the army of heaven (Rev. 19:14+).

The difficulty of including Israel along with the church as part of the bride is a chronological one. OT saints and dead saints from the period of Daniel’s seventieth week [aka “the tribulation saints”] will rise in time for the Millennium (Dan. 12:1-2), but not in time to join Christ in His triumphal return (Rev. 19:14+).  It is also impossible for saints who die during the Millennium to be part of this company, because their resurrection will not come in time (Rev. 20:5-6+). Yet it is incontrovertible that Israel will appear with the church in the New Jerusalem which is also Christ’s bride. The city’s twelve pillars and twelve foundations (Rev. Rev. 21:12+Rev. 21:14+) prove the presence of both distinctive groups.7

Although they will be resurrected to participate in the wedding feast at the Millennial Kingdom (Isa. 26:19; Dan. 12:2; Rev. 20:4+), at the time of the marriage itself they are only soul and spirit. Because they were never joined to the body of Christ by the baptizing work of the Holy Spirit which began on the Day of Pentecost, they are not part of the marriage mystery concerning Christ and the church (Eph. 5:30-32). See commentary on Revelation 17:14. (Fruchtenbaum, The Church Betrothed to Christ)

Unbelievable, Fruchtenbaum takes “theological license” to unilaterally declare the O.T. saints are not resurrected until the commencement of the Millennial Rule & Reign of the Son of David and then omits any exposition of the “tribulational saints” by obfuscating them from Revelation 20:5-6 – how does that go down?  Why?  Because the O.T. saints are not IN CHRIST–“the dead in Christ shall rise first” (1 Thess. 4:16).  Only the Bride of Messiah is IN CHRIST; whereas, the O.T. saints are ensconced in the Bosom of Abraham?

Well, by obfuscating the O.T. saints from the Resurrection/Rapture (1 Thess. 4:15-18), he is able to exclude them from the Marriage Super of the Lamb, ipso facto from the very Bride of Messiah (Rev. 19:6-9).  Why?  Forbid that Jews in the “Age of the Law” looking forward to the “sufferings of Christ” would be found released from their theological ghetto to attend such a feast; although, they certainly looked forward to the day!

Of this salvation the prophets have inquired and searched carefully, who prophesied of the grace that would come to you, searching what, or what manner of time, the Spirit of Christ who was in them was indicating when He testified beforehand the SUFFERINGS OF CHRIST and the glories [perhaps the Marriage Super of the Lamb] that would follow.  To them it was revealed that, not to themselves, but to us they were ministering the things which now have been reported to you through those who have preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven–things which angels desire to look into (1 Peter 1:10-12).

A disquieting realization (or at least it should be) is for Dispensationalists to connect Revelation 20:4 with Revelation 20:5-6.  Here we read a most incredible qualification in participating in the FIRST RESURRECTION (as in “first love” – Rev. 2:4 – which in Greek connotes “best in kind, foremost, superior”) – which would appear to be the Resurrection to which we all should aspire:

And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. An.d they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years (Rev. 20:4)

Ask any Dispensationalist if the Church shall RULE & REIGN with Christ a thousand years (although aloft in their “heavenly sphere”)–and they will reply with a hearty AMEN!  But when they are informed that they might have to suffer a headectomy, most would-be volunteers fade into obscurity.  Yet, the description of these martyrs who did not “worship the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads, or on their hands” are truly those same “tribulation saints” who are designated, at best, as “temple servants” – but, really, does a “temple servant” “rule and reign with Christ a thousand years“?

However, that said, Tommy Ice enlightens us to the “guest list” to be held after the Marriage Supper of the Lamb–i.e., the Reception–quoting Arnold Fruchtenbaum:

However, after the second coming when believers from other ages will be resurrected (Dan. 12:2) along with tribulation saints, both mortal and resurrected ones (Rev. 20:4), these will be the invited guest who will be guests at this celebration supper [aka, the Wedding Reception]. I believe that the marriage supper will be during the first part of the millennial reign of Christ. Fruchtenbaum says:

Hence, the “many” who are bidden to attend the marriage feast on earth are all the Old Testament saints and the Tribulation saints resurrected after the Second Coming. While the marriage ceremony will take place in Heaven just before the Second Coming, the marriage feast will take place on earth after the Second Coming. In fact, it would seem that the marriage feast is what begins the Millennium or the Messianic Kingdom; the Church’s co-reigning with the Messiah will start with a tremendous marriage feast. (Source:  Footsteps of the Messiah, Fruchtenbaum, p. 597. as found in Dr. Tommy Ice’s “Marriage Super of the Lamb” – Pre-Trib Research Center)

Not to sound irreverent, however, later on we learn that the Dispensationalists suggest that just as the O.T./Tribulational Saints (not fit to be members of the Bride of Messiah, and, consequently, the Marriage of the Lamb–even though the Spirit of Christ was somehow “in them” [i.e., the prophets in the O.T.]–they will be the invited guests at the Marriage Reception of the Bride of Messiah at the commencement, apparently, of the Millennial Reign . . . these same O.T./Tribulational Saints (or at least the O.T.–for the Tribulation Saints are in, I guess, a state of limbo) will marry the Father, Jehovah, and become the Wife of Jehovah–when (wherever/whenever) that marriage takes place; then the members of the Bride of Christ will be the invited guests to that Wedding Feast!

Notwithstanding, these rather elaborate Dispensational “clarifications” designed to eliminate “confusion” among God’s people as to His eternal plan and purpose of the ages; other Dispensationalists are NOT in agreement with Dr. Fruchtenbaum and propose a more radical set of “marriage” circumstances; to wit:

It is our firm conviction that the Body of Christ is not the Bride, the Lamb’s wife. We believe to teach otherwise is to bring a kingdom truth into the Body of Christ where it is not only unnatural, but a forced interpretation. May God in His grace give us a Berean spirit to study to see if these things are so. AMEN! (Source:  Berean Bible Study, The Bride of Christ, by Pastor Paul M. Sadler)

Frankly, the elaborate two-tiered system constructed by Dispensationalism and their isolation (I’ve used the term “ghettoizing”) of the Jew, National Israel and their erstwhile “temple servants” (the saints of the 70th Week of Daniel–aka, the “tribulation saints”) are, increasingly discovering a plethora of convoluted explanations regarding the superiority of the Pauline Gospel and its exclusivity to all other writers of the New Testament, let alone its issues related to the writers of the O.T. – as Miles J. Stanford has suggested:

One need not go to Israel for anything!

A Word on Replacement Theologies

Finally, at opposite ends of the prophetic spectrum are the replacement theologians and their teachings which shortly manifested themselves nigh immediately after the initial work of the cross within the EKKLESIA . . .

God never wanted an earthly king in the Old Testament, and He never intended Jesus to be an earthly king. Premillennialists have been wrong about this in exactly the same ways Jews have been wrong.  Premillennialism is rank racism and [so is] Judaism. It rejects God’s plan for the nation of Israel and rejects God’s plan for the King of Israel. Its golden dream is to institute that which God has always opposed. (Source:  David E. Pratte @ https://www.gospelway.com/man/israel-future.php retrieved on 10.01.2017

A Final Word

The determination of Commonwealth Theology is to highlight the indiscretions of Dispensationalism and Replacement Theologies which have either ghettoized the Jews in any future prophetic role or have subsumed the Jews of Judah and/or all twelve tribes of both houses (Judah and Ephraim), eliminating any future and/or immediate prophetic role for ALL ISRAEL – indeed, Replacement Theology completely relegates the Jew, not to a ghetto, but to total theological oblivion!

Neither the confinement (i.e., the theological ghetto) of the Jews by the Dispensationalists, nor their subsumption by Replacement theologies provides an adequate theological discourse in the grand scheme of Biblical themes by providing a cohesive understanding of the singular New Covenant inaugurated through the Blood of the Everlasting Covenant via the sacrifice of the Lamb of God at Calvary.

Keeping Israel and the Church distinct is only permissible when the Two Sticks, the Two Houses – Judah and Ephraim – are understood in their contiguous march through “chosen history.”  Again, their kingdom disillusionment (after the death of King Solomon) can only be restored and reconciled through the Blood of the Cross—so making peace.  By incoherent fracturing wrought via Dispensationalism’s efforts to deflate what are viewed as virtual “competitive claims” by all other biblical authors aside from the Apostle Paul is fraught through and through with Marcion-style heresy.***  We affirm that we have found a much better expression of divine truth without diminishing Israel (Replacement Theology) or ghettoizing the Jew – even so:  COMMONWEALTH THEOLOGY.

*** Marcionism was an Early Christian dualist belief system that originated in the teachings of Marcion of Sinope at Rome around the year 144.[1]

Marcion believed Jesus was the savior sent by God, and Paul the Apostle was his chief apostle, but he rejected the Hebrew Bible and the God of Israel. Marcionists believed that the wrathful Hebrew God was a separate and lower entity than the all-forgiving God of the New Testament. This belief was in some ways similar to Gnostic Christian theology; notably, both are dualistic, that is, they posit opposing gods, forces, or principles: one higher, spiritual, and “good”, and the other lower, material, and “evil” (compare Manichaeism). This dualism stands in contrast to other Christian and Jewish views that “evil” has no independent existence, but is a privation or lack of “good”,[2] a view shared by the Jewish theologian Moses Maimonides.[3]

Marcionism, similar to Gnosticism, depicted the God of the Old Testament as a tyrant or demiurge (see also God as the Devil). Marcion was labeled a gnostic by Philip Schaff,[4]while other scholars[who?] have rejected that categorization. Marcion’s canon consisted of eleven books: A gospel consisting of ten sections drawn from the Gospel of Luke; and ten Pauline epistles.

Marcion’s canon rejected the entire Old Testament, along with all other epistles and gospels of the 27 book New Testament canon because they transmitted “Jewish” ideas.[5] Paul’s epistles enjoy a prominent position in the Marcionite canon, since Paul is credited with correctly transmitting the gracious universality of Jesus’ message in opposition to the harsh dictates of the “just god”. (Winkipedia – Retrieved on 10.01.2017)

GHETTOIZING THE JEWS – PART 1 . . . A Theological Treatise

GHETTOIZING THE JEWS – PART 1 . . . A Theological Treatise

Obviously, this is a very harsh title in that it connotes a theology (viz., Dispensationalism) which deigns to provide the Jew with a modicum of “prophetic respectability” by auguring for Israel’s fulfillment in Bible prophecy and subsequent conversion to Messiah.  The Jews will play a most definitive role in the Millennial Kingdom of the Son of David.  So, how could this amenable eschatology, even general theology, be adjudged as a theological GHETTO for the Jews?

Obviously, this is a very harsh title in that it connotes a theology (viz., Dispensationalism) which deigns to provide the Jew with a modicum of “prophetic respectability” by auguring for Israel’s fulfillment in Bible prophecy and subsequent conversion to Messiah.  The Jews will play a most definitive role in the Millennial Kingdom of the Son of David.  So, how could this amenable eschatology, even general theology, be adjudged as a theological GHETTO for the Jews?

The entire premise of Dispensationalism accords National Israel (defined as unbelieving corporate Israel, the Jewish people who have NOT embraced Jesus as Messiah) a central role in Bible Prophecy from her scattering among the nations (Luke 21:20-24)—i.e. “Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled” (Luke 21:24) until the ingathering of these exiles (Verses like these validate Dispensationalism’s claim on the return of the Jews to their ancient homeland:  1 Chron. 18:35; Psa. 106:47; Micah 2:12; Zeph. 3:20; Isaiah 27:12; Jer. 31:10; Psalm 147:2; Isa. 56:8; Ezk. 39:27; Psa. 107:2-3; Isa. 57:7; Ezk. 39:28; Hosea 8:10; Deut. 30:3-4; Nehemiah 1:9; Isa. 11:11-12; Jer. 29:14; 32:37; Ezk. 11:17; 20:34; 41; 28:25; 34:13; 36:24; 37:21; Zech. 10:10; Isa. 43:5; Jer. 31:8 and many more).

Moreover, the Jews (aka, Judah which in the minds of Dispensationalism constitute ALL ISRAEL today—meaning, all 12 tribes have been subsumed by Judah; no tribes are lost or remain scattered.  All the tribes are considered Jews—i.e., only Jews are Israel, no one else can be considered National Israel; only Jews are Israel.  This definition of ALL ISRAEL will play a major role AFTER the Church is raptured in accordance with “Dispensational Truth.”

Currently, they, the Jews, are being regathered in “unbelief” – most Jews today living in Israel are either atheist, agnostic or refuse even to identify themselves as Jewish first, but prefer to see themselves first as Israelis, then as Jews.*

Dispensationalism stands or falls upon rightly dividing the Word of truth (2 Tim. 2:15). Dr. Charles C. Ryrie put it succinctly: “The essence of dispensationalism … is the distinction between Israel and the Church” (Dispensationalism Today, p. 47).  (Taken from THE END-TIMES OBSERVER, The Dispensational Gospels, by Miles J. Stanford, May 14, 2006.)

Dispensationalist, Miles J. Stanford emphatically states:

Dispensationalism is in danger of falling because of a careless dilution of her life-sustaining distinctions. One factor is the seminary teaching that the Church has a part in Israel’s earthly-kingdom New Covenant (Jer. 31:31,33; Ezek. 36:26,27; 37:14). But a far more pervasive error is that of failure to distinguish between Jesus’ earthly Gospel for Israel, and His heavenly Gospel for the Church.

For too long the Church has been subjected to a Synoptic, kingdom Gospel that was never intended for her. She is thereby diverted from her heavenly Gospel and position in the One “in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col. 2:3). (Ibid.)

Thus, in the exegesis of Miles J. Stanford any participation in the New Covenant found in the Hebrew Scriptures – and allusions to the same in the New Testament – is a breaking of the barrier between Israel (as defined by Stanford) and the “called out ones from among the nations” (aka, the EKKLESIA).  Worse yet, is confusing the gospels conveyed via the “earthly gospel” presented by Jesus and the “heavenly gospel” disclosed via revelation through Paul, the Apostle.  No, Stanford wishes to create Two New Covenants and Two Gospels (at the least).

Stanford criticizes Dr. John MacArthur’s “gospel overreach” by apparently blurring, what I call, the ghettoizing of the “earthly kingdom gospel” offered to National Israel during the earthly ministry of Jesus and, as we shall see, merging it with the “heavenly gospel of the grace of God” as revealed through Paul.  Incorporated in Stanford’s distinction is the essence of two separate New Covenants with special promises made specifically to National Israel upon the earth and to the Church “seated in the heavens.”  Stanford continues to expose the blurring of MacArthur’s lines:

Dr. MacArthur’s particular error here lies in his applying Jesus’ kingdom Gospel for earthly Israel to the heavenly Church! He has followed his many Covenant mentors in thinking that there is but one Gospel, and but one salvation. Furthermore, he expresses the strong bias of Covenant theologians toward Dispensationalism and its leaders.**

Thus, Stanford now goes further:  Two New Covenants, Two Gospels and Two Salvations.

Perhaps MacArthur’s exposure of these Dispensational authors provides some hope for us all in that he further explains his most recent illumintion of how the Synoptic Gospels are NOT divorced from the Gospel of the Grace of God as preached by Paul; to wit:

Some dispensationalists have seen “the Gospel of the kingdom” that Jesus proclaimed (Matt. 4:23) as distinct from “the Gospel of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24). Also, that the substance of this “Gospel of the kingdom” is “that God purposes to set up on earth the kingdom of Christ… in fulfillment of the Davidic Covenant” (Ibid. New Scofield Reference Bible, p. 1366).

Lewis Sperry Chafer wrote that the Gospel of the kingdom was for the nation of Israel only “and should in no way be confused with the Gospel of saving grace” (Grace, Zondervan, p. 132).

Another early dispensational writer declared that the Gospel Jesus preached had nothing to do with salvation but was simply an announcement that the time had come to set up the kingdom of Christ on earth (Clarence Larkin-Rightly Dividing the Word, p. 61).

All this may fit neatly into a particular dispensational scheme, but Scripture does not support it. We must not forget that Jesus came to seek and to save the lost, not merely to announce an earthly kingdom. When Jesus proclaimed His kingdom, He was preaching salvation. (p. 89) (Ibid. John MacArthur) (Ibid. Stanford)

Stanford boldly declares the differences in the gospel that Jesus preached and the one Paul preached:

Yes, He was preaching salvation, i.e., kingdom salvation–a far cry from spiritual birth as a new creation in Christ Jesus, who is our Life (Col. 3:3). (Ibid.)

Moreover, Stanford continues to solidify the “heavenly gospel” which produces the Church from the “earthly gospel of the kingdom” which provides for the Millennial Reign of the Son of David through National Israel upon the earth (Note:  Apart and separated from Israel during the entire Millennium is the Bride of Messiah, the Church–i.e., Israel is upon the earth during the 1,000-year reign of the Son of David; while the Church, as the Bride of Messiah/Christ, enjoys the splendors of heaven–never arriving in totality upon her crust (again, separated from Israel):

Most dispensationalists, along with Covenant theologians, fail to realize that there are two Gospels, each dependent upon the Blood of the Cross. One is earthly, the other is heavenly. And both Gospels are “according to Jesus.” The one was ministered by Him on earth, in His humiliation, prior to the Cross, exclusively for Israel and her earthly kingdom. The other–and it is altogether “new creation” other–was ministered to Paul by the glorified Lord Jesus Christ; after Calvary, from heaven, exclusively for His chosen heavenly Body, His beloved Bride. (Ibid.)

The infraction created by Stanford in his “two gospels” narrative is “theologically artificial” for the supreme reason set forth by Paul himself:

For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace, and He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity.  And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near.  For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father (Eph. 2:14-18).

The entire thrust of the BLOOD OF THE CROSS was the abolition of the enmity between Jew and Gentile – in our nomenclature, that which is biblically-based, between Judah and Ephraim or between Judah-Israel and Ephraim-Israel or between the Jew and those “elect from among the nations” – aka, the EKKLESIA) – whose “identity” is unavoidably described by Paul as Ephraim/Israel – Jezreel/Samaria wherein “Aliens would swallow it up…Israel is swallowed up; now they are among the Gentiles…I will no longer have mercy on the house of Israel, but I will utterly take them away…Yet I will have mercy on the house of Judah…Then God said: ‘Call his (Ephraim/Israel) name Lo-Ammi, for you are not My people, and I will not be your God” (Hosea 8:7-8; 1:6-7, 9):

What if God, wanting to show His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, and that He might make known the riches of His glory on the vessels of mercy, which He had prepared beforehand for glory, even us whom He called, not of the Jews only, but also of the Gentiles (lit. “nations” or “ethnos”)?  As He says also in Hosea:  ‘I will call them My people, who were not My people, and her beloved, who was not beloved.’ ‘And it shall come to pass in the place where it was said to them, ‘you are not My people,’ There they shall be called sons of the living God.’ (Romans 9:22-26; Hosea 2:23; 1:10).

Stanford, by creating this artificial separation, goes beyond the distinctions set forth between National Israel (aka, the Jews in his mind’s eye) and those of the EKKLESIA.  God’s intention, through the BLOOD OF THE CROSS, was to make One New Man, One Body, a New Creation–not two separate entities whereby the one, the Jews, would be sequestered upon the Earth in their forecasted earthly kingdom, and the other aloft in the Heavens–distinct yes, but that “dimensional divide” is wholly linked together as ONE through the Blood of the Cross – through the revelation given to Nathaniel by Jesus as Son of God and Son of Man:  JACOB’S LADDER, where we see the “angels ascending and descending upon the Son of Man” (John 1:43-51); thereby abolishing the dimensional and jurisdictional divide – this is the BRIDGE which forever unites the bonds that bind these two peoples as the one people of God, the Household of Faith.  Yes, He, through the “Blood of the Everlasting Covenant” (Hebrews 13:20) has brought heaven and earth together; to wit:

But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, to the GATHERING (i.e, the “general assembly”) and church (lit. “EKKLESIA”) of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect, to Jesus the Mediator of the New Covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel” (Heb. 12:22-24).

Indeed, the “spirits of just men, made perfect” is inclusive of the Whole Household of Faith from Abel’s death onward unto the present–The GENERAL ASSEMBLY!  When Jacob awoke from his dream/vision he immediately called the place BETHEL or EL-BETHEL, God, the House of God–i.e., ONE HOUSE upon the Earth, no less!  By prohibiting and sequestering the Jews under the Mosaic Covenant which as our guardian/tutor brought us to Messiah/Christ (Gal. 3:20-25), and declaring that the Jews will once again proclaim the Law of Moses after the secret pretribulational rapture of the Church, is truly a retrograde, even deprecation or devolution of the pristine message of the Blood of the Cross that alone can save to the uttermost.  The slicing and dicing of the Bible’s revealed truth is compartmentalized by Dispensationalism to the uttermost; Dispensationalist Timothy S. Morton highlights this “revelatory diminishing” with clarity:

Only after the Jews reject their Messiah do the Gentiles come into play. Nevertheless only a relatively small portion of the Bible applies doctrinally to Church Age Gentiles. The Bible portion from Acts chapter 15 to Philemon applies doctrinally to a born again Christian and is unique to the Church Age [Note:  Morton purposefully omits the books of Hebrews, James, 1 & 2 Peter, 1, 2 & 3 John, Jude and the Revelation–in other words, only those Pauline epistles]. The rest of the Bible is strictly Jewish. This is not to say that we saved Gentiles cannot profit from the Jewish books and learn doctrine on other matters (all the words of the Lord are written for our admonition and learning), but we must be careful to rightly divide the Scriptures where doctrine is concerned. Without determining the proper divisions and drawing the correct dispensational lines, the Bible is little more than a jumbled mess of contradictions.  [Note:  Said from the prism of the Dispensationalist mindset.]

Morton persists:

Since the present Church Age is a mystery and parenthetical, the establishment of it causes the books called the NT [Matt.-Rev.] to have two divisions in them making three sections. The first section is the Jewish law in the gospels before the cross; the second section is from the cross to the rapture, the Church Age; and the third section is from the rapture to the second advent, the Tribulation. There is a partial transitional subsection in the second section from the cross until Acts 15 where the Church Age salvation doctrines were fully established. (Tribulation Salvation…Are Believers In The Tribulation Saved The Same As “Church Age” Believers? By Timothy S. Morton, as found in Preserved Words)

First, the New Testament did not begin until AFTER the crucifixion [Heb. 9:15-17], thus all of the material found in the four gospels applies doctrinally to Jews under Mosaic Law. This is important to remember. Until Matt. 27:50 [when Jesus yielded up His spirit], etc. the OT was still in full effect. So everything that is said before then must be placed in its proper context. Thus nearly everything Christ said before the cross applies doctrinally not to us Gentiles but to the Jews in reference to their kingdom. (Ibid.)

Now, carefully read what Dispensationalism (Morton) actually teaches in refuting the work of the Holy Spirit AFTER their pretribulational, secret rapture of the EKKLESIA:

As most Bible believers are aware, before the Kingdom [Millennium] can come the Tribulation must occur. And before the Tribulation can occur the Church must be taken away from this coming “wrath” by the rapture [Matt. 3:7; 1 Thes. 5:9; Rev. 6:16-17] . When the rapture occurs and Christ takes His Church into Heaven with Him, things will never be the same on earth again. When all those in Christ are raised up to meet their Savior in the air, a whole dispensational system will go up with them. Eternal salvation as we know it today (by grace through faith apart from works) will no longer be valid because the Holy Spirit will no longer regenerate and seal those who become saved after the “trump” [1 Thes. 4:16]. Believers in the future will not have a new nature, be placed in Christ, or have Christ permanently indwelling them. Simply put, the means of salvation as we know it today will no longer exist. The differences in the dispensations will make it impossible for a believer to be born again [as we now understand it], placed into Christ’s Body, or keep eternal life by faith alone. Instead of being like salvation in the Church Age, salvation will be very similar to the way it was in the Old Testament with works playing a part. (Ibid.) (My emphasis)

Indeed, Morton, doubles down in erecting, once again, the WALL OF SEPARATION between the Jew and the Greek, after the “Church’s” Rapture:

Faith will likely be the means of the believer initially being saved, but his faith must motivate the proper works for him to keep his salvation, and he must be faithful in keeping them to “endure to the end.”

There are around 200 verses in the New Testament that indicate someone can lose his salvation— they must fit somewhere— and the Tribulation is the place.

Remember Matthew chapters 24 and 25, and Hebrews chapters 3, 6, and 10? The Tribulation is where they all doctrinally apply: the “time of Jacob’s trouble” (not the Church’s trouble). Again, someone in the Bible can lose his salvation, but it is not a born again Christian. (Ibid.)

Thus, a familiar passage will, in effect be reminiscent of “Morton’s Folly” – to wit:

Are you so foolish?  Having begun in the Spirit [aka “faith”], are you now being made perfect by the flesh? [by “works”] (Gal. 3:3)

Morton is undeterred:

During the Tribulation salvation will be similar to salvation under the law as far as what happens to and inside a believer is concerned. Since regeneration is no longer available, nothing will happen inside the believer to secure his salvation. Though he won’t be saved on credit as those in the Old Testament were (because Christ’s atonement has since been made), he will still be saved on a trial basis like they were. Believing on Christ will just be the first step in his process of salvation, for along with believing he must “keep the commandments of God.” Look at these clear passages in Revelation (Morton references Rev. 12:17; 14:12; 22:14). (Ibid.) (My emphasis.)

What?  “On a trial basis” (tribulation saints) vs. on a “credit basis” (O.T. saints)!  Yet, even after the Church’s pre-trib rapture, the Jews are kept from Gentile believers who shall turn to the Lord during this “inter-dispensational” time frame; according to Morton:

What is unclear about these passages? Nothing to a Bible believer who takes them as they stand and doesn’t try to change their meaning. Since this is, again, a Jewish dispensation [the “interlude” between the Rapture and the Second Coming of Christ], the commandments must be the Ten Commandments and other commandments given under the law. Gentiles will likely not be obligated to keep the distinctly Jewish commandments, but they must keep the moral commandments as much as they know them even if their conscience is their only guide. (Source:  TRIBULATION SALVATION…Are Believers In The Tribulation Saved The Same As “Church Age” Believers?  By Timothy S. Morton @ http://preservedwords.com/tribsalv-pv.htm – Retrieved on 10.02.2017 . . . my emphasis/bold).

These incessant “modifications” within the Dispensational theological/eschatological system are so expansive and convoluted that most evangelicals, and even those who adhere to some form of Dispensationalism, are ignorant, confused or simply too lazy to delve into the intricacies of their “two-tiered” system of belief.  If the truth be known as to their doctrinal deviations from the supreme sacrifice wrought by Christ on the Cross–the Blood of the Cross–they not only would be “doctrinally embarrassed”–they would immediately recognize the incongruity of “going back under the Law” as if the Law in and of itself could have ever saved anyone–“for without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins” (Heb. 9:22).

The question must be asked of these Dispensationalists:  How can the “Blood of the Lamb” which obviously provides the overcoming power against the Beast (“they overcome him [the Dragon-Beast] by the Blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they love not their lives unto the death” – Rev. 12:11) be applied without the empowerment of the Holy Spirit?  Is the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit absent in the believer during this most crucial time in human history–the “end of the age?”  How can a man be born from above and thus be empowered to live for Christ without the anointing/empowerment of the Holy Spirit, and the indwelling Christ?

Furthermore, if one within the so-called “Church Age” is indwelt by the Holy Spirit and is, as well, found to be “in Christ” – eternally secured – then how is it if one cannot loose THIS salvation up to the time of the Rapture, THAT AFTER THE RAPTURE, TRIBULATION SALVATION starts in faith and is somehow made perfect in the flesh (by works alone).  Also, that after the Rapture one can be “saved” but cannot be eternally secured–one’s salvation can be lost?  Alas!  The “on again – off again” security of the believer within “Dispensational Confusion!”

Notwithstanding, the Dispensationalist is forced to say that the “tribulational believer” can only be saved, ultimately, by the “works of the law” and NOT by faith–throwing a “doctrinal sop” to the “tribulational saints” by initiating their “tribulational salvation” by faith and switching to its confirmation via works.  This “bait and switch” nuance found in “Dispensational salvation” is an horrific departure from true salvation; and effectively deprecates the empowerment of the believer to overcome the Dragon/Beast by works alone and not by the “faith of Jesus” – all in a vain attempt in keeping Jewish-Israel’s promises in tack (GHETTOIZED); thereby, elevating the EKKLESIA’s status to its heavenly superiority . . .

Here is the endurance of the saints, here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. (Rev. 14:12)

To suggest, somehow, that these “tribulational believers” (Rev. 7:9-17) embrace the commandments of God without the faith of Jesus is preposterous or to suggest that the Law of Moses (i.e., works-based salvation in the eyes of Dispensationalism) AND the very “faith of Jesus” are distinguished in such a way that this “faith of Jesus” is wholly objective and does not require the empowerment of the Spirit via the indwelling Spirit of Christ, is ANATHEMA to the Gospel’s very essence!

It is not the purpose of this tome to clarify the Commandments of God/Torah with the Faith of Jesus–suffice it, however, to say that the Torah was NOT nailed to the Cross (it was the enmity of the flesh of sin–the inability to keep the law of commandments contained in ordinances–the same enmity that the Dispensationalists are attempting to resurrect after their pretribulational rapture).  Believers who have under the New Covenant, written upon the fleshy tables of their hearts (2 Cor. 3:3), these very LAWS, do not then, nor now, see a doctrinal collision between the Faith of Jesus and the Torah but, to the contrary, declare that the Faith of Jesus fulfills the Law of Moses and is utterly compatible in the life of all believers in Jesus, who have the FAITH OF JESUS!  Indeed, the Torah is NOT antithetical to the “fruit of the Spirit” nor is the “fruit of the Spirit” antithetical to the Torah!

The Pretribulational Rapture of the Church Exposes a Flawed System

Returning to Miles J. Stanford’s complications–and those of Classic Dispensationalism–these glaring infractions embodied in this two-tiered system which are supposedly designed to “dispensate” or “rightly divide” the word of truth (God’s economy or method of administration), only acerbate an already retrograde system of belief.  This is all the more substantiated by the removal of the Bride of Messiah in a Pretribulational Rapture (along with the Gospel of the Grace of God which alone can produce the One Body–where there is “neither Jew nor Greek”) to make room for, frankly, a retrograde “gospel of the kingdom” for earthly Israel (aka, the Jews).

In so doing, Stanford, knowing that the Blood of the Cross alone saves to the uttermost, them who believe, and knowing that “Neither is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:12), then proceeds to the illogical conclusion that the Blood of the Cross–which specifically and exclusively produces the One Body, the One New Man, a New Creation, the Bride of Messiah–admits that His Blood, as well, produces another gospel, covenant (New), and even salvation which in turn confines the Jews to their tenuous earthly estate, wholly separated from the Bride of Messiah.  Please, do not tell me that the pretribulational rapture of the Church has nothing to do with salvation–it is utterly salvific in its most profound sense!

In other words, Paul states in Colossians 1:20 that the PEACE PREACHED in Ephesians 2:17 is the peace wrought through the Cross of Messiah:

And by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made PEACE THROUGH BLOOD OF HIS CROSS (Col. 1:20).

The Blood of the Cross can only produce One New Man–so making peace!  The cross does not sequester the Jews, National Israel, as defined by the Dispensationalists, to a “this worldly” destination OUTSIDE the One Body, while the Bride of Messiah is assigned to an “other worldly” location.  No, the Blood of the Cross liberates the Jews from their THEOLOGICAL GHETTO–the “divine deliverance” recorded in Romans 11:26; to wit:

Blindness in part happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles [lit. “the multitude of nations”] has come in…and so ALL ISRAEL will be delivered, as it is written, ‘The Deliverer will come out of Zion, and He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob; for this is My covenant with them, when I take away their sins'” (Romans 11:25-27).

ALL ISRAEL bespeaks of those from the “multitude of nations” as well as Judah’s portion in Israel!  BOTH HOUSES of Israel–Judah and Ephraim–ALL ISRAEL experiences the marvelous salvation of the DELIVERER Who shall “come out of Zion!”

Heaven and earth are forever united through the Blood of the Cross.  That dimensional divide between the “seen and unseen” is bridged once and for all at the MANIFESTATION of the Coming King of kings and Lord of lords.

This is, if we must use the Greek understanding of this spiritual and material reality, a teleological confirmation.  Teleology:

A philosophy of teleology sees purpose in ends rather than stated causes, making the outcome the actual, or “final” cause. When you see things in terms of teleology, you explain actions by their results.

In sum:  The cross cannot produce any other outcome (there is no “tribulational interruption”)–the biblical narrative is simply and overwhelmingly in counter distinction to Stanford’s two gospels, two new covenants, two salvations, two “spheres” or administrative jurisdiction (viz., the New Jerusalem in the heavens NOT descending to the earth at the commencement of the Millennial rule and reign of the Son of David and the Holy District seen by Ezekiel in Ezk. 40-48) or two Holy Cities, two brides (viz., the Wife of Jehovah and the Bride of Messiah/Jesus, the Christ).  The Blood of the Cross has but ONE DETERMINATION that is a teleological reality:  THE BRIDE OF MESSIAH – our God is NOT a polygamist (if I could be so crude).

In particular, to “preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed–ANATHEMA” (Gal. 1:7).  By PERVERTING the Gospel of Christ (Gal. 1:7), Stanford has either purposefully or unwittingly inserted a false narrative, thereby keeping the Jews “theologically ghettoized” via a DIFFERENT GOSPEL…which is not another gospel (Gal. 1:6-7) but is a complete perversion of the message of the Cross!  Then, to suggest that this “gospel of the kingdomMatt. 24:14) is somehow calibrated via the Blood of the Cross which alone produces the One New Man, and that “tribulation salvation” is wholly commensurate with its gospel by this same Blood, is, quite frankly, an affront to the Grace of God!  It suggests that the Blood of the Cross is “ineffectual” in its sole purpose in abolishing that WALL OF SEPARATION between Jew and Greek in the first place.

The Singularity of the Holy City – Her Multi-Dimensional Understanding

Our feeble understanding of the Multi-Dimensional Holy City as described by John in Revelation 21 and by Ezekiel in chapters 40-48 only substantiates our poor, puny thinking – “for eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him” (Isaiah 64:4; 65:17; 1 Cor. 2:9).  Please note, that verse in 1 Cor. 2:9 is a direct quote from Isaiah!

Brethren, that Holy City, the Holy District, the New Jerusalem is BOTH heavenly and earthly–distinction YES, separation NO!  We are simply viewing the HOLY CITY known in Ezekiel as THE LORD IS THERE (YHWH SHAMMAHEzk. 48:35) from two different perspectives.  The fact is her dimensional perimeter is given in Ezekiel 48:35 as “all the way around shall be eighteen thousand cubits” is the “earthly expression” AND her heavenly dimension given in miles is that of 12,000 furlongs X 660 ft. (one furlong) = 7,920,000 linear feet or 1,500 linear miles (7,920,000 ft. divided by 5,280 ft. [one mile] = 1,500 miles) X 12 edges of her cube = 18,000 miles or 18 = 18 (known in mathematical terms as fractals and/or resemblances–Rev. 21:16).

Miles J. Stanford’s Two-Tiered Narrative of the Heavens and Earth

Stanford elaborates on Dispensationalism’s two-tiered narrative:

HEAVEN-BASED CHURCH — The Church’s source is in heaven, and she was manifested on the earth at Pentecost. She will return to her eternal abode in heaven at the Rapture. She has no relationship with anything prior to the Cross. [Notwithstanding, the “assembly” or “church in the wilderness” found in Acts 7:38; nor the fact that “And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be ...” (Gal. 3:8).] [My bracketed observation.]

Paul’s heavenly Gospel is exclusively for the Church. One need not go to Israel for anything. Why should a glorified one leave his abode in the new heavens, to live on the renewed earth? To reign, yes, but not to be a kingdom dweller. The Bride shares the throne with her Bridegroom, whether in heaven or on earth. (Stanford, Ibid.) (My emphasis.)

What?  This deserves a careful observation in that Stanford alludes to the “orbiting of the Bride of Messiah during the Millennial reign” somewhere in Earth’s ionosphere as Walvoord suggests–she never descends to the Earth where the Jews abide but somehow from her heavenly perch she “reigns” with Christ a thousand years?  Let’s continue with Stanford:

Dispensationalism has the responsibility of clearly proclaiming the great differentiation between Jesus’ kingdom Gospel prior to Calvary, and His post-Cross, heavenly Gospel.

If Paul’s heavenly Gospel were not other than that of Jesus’ earthly kingdom Gospel to Israel, he would naturally have been instructed by the apostles who had been with Jesus all during His earthly ministry. But on the contrary, the apostles had to be taught by Paul concerning much of the new, heavenly truth. (Ibid.)

Thus, the remarkable and observable condescending remark of a “kingdom dweller” (the Jews of Israel) vs. a “glorified one” whose abode is in heaven (i.e., the Church)!  This is an affront to the Cross of Christ and, trust me, a slap in the face of every Jew!  There is an incomprehensible “theological smugness” manifested in these remarks and those of the Dispensationalists which perpetuates the confinement of the Jews of Israel and keeps them in this artificial ghetto–may the Lord of Sabaoth forgive us for such effrontery!

Dr. William R. Newell – the Superiority of Paul’s Gospel

Another theologian among the Dispensationalists is the late Dr. William R. Newell (1868-1956).  He discerns the DISPENSATIONAL DISTINCTION between Israel and the Church in this manner when it comes to so-called “Lordship Salvation” espoused by John MacArthur predicated as it is upon the Synoptic Gospels juxtaposed to the alleged proprietary Pauline Gospel of the Grace of God ensconced within the Dispensational narrative:

But Paul received his teaching from heaven, from the Lord Jesus Christ, rather than from Jesus on earth in His Jewish connections. Paul’s Gospel has nothing Jewish about it. He had been so completely taken out of Judaism and all connections with “old things” that the Jews would never acknowledge him again.

And the Jewish Christians constantly misunderstood him [even as, they do now. Today the “Messianic Jews” gravitate to Jesus’ kingdom Gospel–as do many others!]. Such liberty as Paul had come into was totally unknown before [and has been all too little known since!].” (End Times Observer, pp. 11, 12)

The heart of the Pauline Gospel is that the old Adam life is condemned in death, and another Adam, even the glorified Lord Jesus Christ, is revealed in us as our Life, by the Spirit of Christ. The Father identified us with Christ at the Cross, making us positionally dead unto sin, and made alive unto God. “I have been crucified with Christ: I live, yet not I, but Christ liveth in me” (Gal. 2:20).

And all the “mysteries,” or “secrets,” revealed to the Church in this dispensation by the Holy Spirit were revealed to Paul. He is the exclusive unfolder of that great company of God’s elect, called the Church, the Body and Bride of Christ (p. 4). (Ibid.) (My emphasis.)

Newell lambastes the compromisers among the Dispensationalists, like John MacArthur, with this bombast:

Dispensationalism is sick, and has no one to blame but its leaders. If they had stood up with Paul and the glorified Lord Jesus Christ, against all Covenant comers, a tragedy such as this would not be in the making. (In reference to the “Lordship Salvation” now espoused by Dr. John MacArthur). (Ibid.)

Please go to PART 2 of this article.


* A plurality of Israeli Jews (46%) say being Jewish comes before being Israeli for them, but about a third (35%) say they are Israeli first. Secular (Hiloni) Jews in Israel are particularly likely to feel this way: A majority (59%) say they think of themselves as being Israeli before being Jewish. (Source:  A Closer Look at Jewish Identity in Israel and the U.S. by Michael Lipka, March 16, 2016, Pew Research Center, Retried on 10.01.2017 @ http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/03/16/a-closer-look-at-jewish-identity-in-israel-and-the-u-s/

**Source:  THE END TIMES OBSERVER – May, 2006 – “The Dispensational Gospels” by Miles J. Stanford.

DISPENSATIONAL CONFUSION?

DISPENSATIONAL CONFUSION?

“And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and  mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God” (Gal. 6:16).

The following is simply a casual response from someone in a major denomination who is, apparently, a famous evangelist—yes, he used the word “famous.”  Anyway, turns out he has a Jewish background, and joined Tribnet 7000 FB group; and when he found out that SOME on Tribnet 7000 affirm that Israel’s “full identity” did not match his interpretation of the Scriptures, he dropped the entire Group like a hot potato!

Perhaps this may demonstrate a lot of the thinking “out there”–something many of us have seen—but you can readily discern the confusion in his delivery—this is AFTER he allegedly read some of our material on CT.  Very interesting…his remarks are in BOLD.

The Evangelist:

As for the Commonwealth of Israel, The Church, and Israel are completely different. Not even the same roles, but the Church shares in some of the promises as Israel does, for they are the heirs with Abraham; but the Church is not Israel.

Obviously, this is the result of Dispensationalism—which permeates the mentality of American evangelicalism.  Within Dispensationalism there is this rigid DISTINCTION between their interpretation of what is Israel and their interpretation of what is the Church–each has their own roles; unfortunately, that DISTINCTION overwhelms and continues into virtual and perpetual SEPARATION between the two in their roles–even throughout the Millennium and even there are two wives–“The Wife of Jehovah” for Israel and the Bride of Messiah, for the Church–THAT’S big time SEPARATION.

Christians are not Jews, even though some Jews are Christians.

Indeed, we’ve made that very clear:  Christians—those “elect from among the nations” DO NOT REPLACE JEWS; and, of course, he sees “Israel” as only the Jews—ANY replacement of the tribes—i.e., the 10 Tribes of the North, constitutes replacement of the Jews—which, of course, is not the case at all in CT – the Jews are still the Jews – “saved or unsaved” – “redeemed or unredeemed.”  Again, at issue is not whether one is a Jew but the definition of ISRAEL….

The church isn’t asleep as it used to be, but she has been awakened a little while, just trimming their lamps. Now, you have stated “The Commonwealth of Israel” [taken from Ephesians 2:12–“aliens from the commonwealth of Israel”].  Do you mean the “Commonwealth of Ephraim?”  That might refer to America, but maybe not, but we bless all, and if you want to be blessed, or share in the Commonwealth [of Israel?], then bless Israel, and God will bless you, but if you curse Israel, God will curse you.

Where he comes up with the “Commonwealth of Ephraim” is anyone’s guess—even AMERICA as Ephraim—which he does a bit of a waffle act by stating “America may or may not be the Commonwealth of Ephraim.”  Notwithstanding, whatever America is, she should bless and not curse today’s Jews/Israel.  Also, it appears that if we Christians from “among the nations” wish to “share in the Commonwealth of Israel, then we should bless Israel, then God will bless us, and if we curse Israel, God will curse us.”  Apparently, and although we are included in the Commonwealth of Israel according to Ephesians 2:12, if we do not bless his definition of Israel, we will not be blessed but cursed?  Is that what I’m hearing and reading?

Israel is the apple of God’s eye whoever touches Israel touches the apple of God’s eye.  On the other hand, Jews–which is my ethnicity–are considered Israel, all of us are, but not all who say they are Israel are Israel, or of Israel.

Is the antecedent of his “all of us are” referring to all Jews like him are considered Israel or just Jews who are redeemed are Israel?  I don’t think he is suggesting that non-Jews can be a part of Israel.

Perhaps we’re in view of an admixture wherein “Jews—which is my ethnicity—are considered Israel, all of us are, but not all who say they are Israel are Israel, or of Israel”  Herein lies a bit of confusion in his reasoning in that within Israel he alludes to the “redeemed of Israel” and those not redeemed are not of Israel—but, on the other hand, even though the Jews are “considered Israel—all of us” – but not all the Jews within Israel are in actuality the “True Israel” – thus, the “True Israel” are only those Jews of “National Israel” who have been redeemed.  Pinning him down on this would be somewhat of a necessity.

I read some of the things on your website (CT). I am sorry to say, but I don’t believe in the theology that is stated on CT. it’s nothing against you, but I am a famous Evangelist with a global outreach into the hundreds of millions—I lost count.  But as far as CT goes, I do not agree with it because it is not as I believe.

CONCLUSION:

Obviously, this “famous evangelist” sees an altogether stark view of the separation of the “Church and Israel” – that means:  YES DISTINCTION – YES SEPARATION (big time)…all the while confusing ISRAEL’S definition.

Yet, he separates out the “redeemed of the Jews/Israel” and alludes to the fact that only they (not the Christians of non-ethnic-Jewish backgrounds) constitute the “Israel of God” – whereas, some Jews who claim they are “of Israel” and not redeemed, really are NOT of Israel (Rom. 9:6?)

Apparently, in his thinking, only Jews who are redeemed can be considered the “Israel of God” (Galatians 6:16).  In point of fact I have a very dear and close brother in the Lord who has been a friend of mine for decades; he affirms the very same thing; i.e., in Paul’s benediction to the Galatian assembly he states:

And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them” [my friend tells me that this part of the benediction is for the “Gentile believers” in Galatia—i.e., the “uncircumcised”] – then he brings up the issue of the conjunction AND which indicates a pause and a complete separation between the Gentile believers and the Jewish believers; therefore, when Paul says:  “AND upon the Israel of God” — he is referring only to those Jews within the Galatian assemblies who are not only redeemed, but also affirm the concept of the “New Creation” wherein circumcision or uncircumcision avails nothing, but a New Creation!

I find his exegesis a disconcerting narrative separating the “elect from among the nations” from the “Jews” who, likewise, have been separated unto the Gospel of the Grace of God where there is neither Jew nor Greek but all are One Body. My friend would have us believe that the “Gentile believers” constitute a portion of the New Creation and the other portion of the New Creation are Jews who enjoy the New Creation (as well) and are, therefore, the “Israel of God” or the “redeemed of Israel.”  Can you follow me?

This is a most subtle defamation of the truth of Scripture.  There is nothing in Paul’s benediction which would suggest that only the Jewish believers constitute the ISRAEL OF GOD – nor that “peace and mercy” is extended just to “Gentile believers” but NOT to Jewish believers!

Paul’s benediction is INCLUSIVE of both the “elect from among the nations” (aka, the uncircumcised) and Jewish believers—both are enjoined to “walk according to this rule” (i.e., the Law of Christ) – and BOTH are duly recognized as the ISRAEL OF GOD (not just the Jewish believers).

The “middle wall of separation” was broken down—that “wall of partition” by the blood of the cross—SO MAKING PEACE.  That’s the PEACE Paul speaks of between Jew and “Gentile” – and that’s the mercy extended to BOTH Houses, if you would (Romans 9-11).

Now, what I am hearing—and correct me if I am wrong—but with Messianic believers, many of them, like this brother, take offense, when we (“the elect from among the nations”) would suggest that we TOO are a part of the ISRAEL OF GOD.  Right?  They, apparently, have no difficulty in being BOTH a part of the New Creation, the One Body, aka, the CHURCH – but within that One Body they maintain their identity as the “redeemed of Israel” and are, therefore, the ISRAEL OF GOD—whereas, we (e.g., the ethnic Galatians) are simply “members of the same Body” once we are redeemed—it’s like within the One Body where there is NOT supposed to be “Jew nor Greek” – our Jewish House rigorously demands that they constitute ALL ISRAEL or TRUE ISRAEL or THE ISRAEL OF GOD- even SPIRITUAL ISRAEL – and, of course, unredeemed Jews who “consider themselves Israel” really aren’t Israel because they are not redeemed Israel.

This appears as a case of CHOSEN CHOSENESS!  They find themselves in this super-inflated position that not even the most righteous Jew of Israel can attain—they are the super Jews—the true Israelites and the only ISRAEL OF GOD.

Instead of the Jews being subsumed by the Church and the Church proclaiming that they and they alone are the ISRAEL OF GOD—we have the Messianics proclaiming just as loud that only they constitute the ISRAEL OF GOD and, although they are members of the Church, only they can be the Israel of God!

I know I must sound terribly redundant–but what is at issue here–is precision:  What is our definition of the ISRAEL OF GOD?  This Messianic Jew seems to exhibit an overweening sense of Judah’s propriety in all things Israel–even though it is altogether obvious that we, “the elect from among the nations” — who once were aliens — have now been brought via the blood of the cross of Jesus into the very Commonwealth of Israel – so WHO IS THE ISRAEL OF GOD?  The same ones from both the circumcision and the uncircumcision who have BOTH received “peace and mercy” – WE ALL ARE THE ISRAEL OF GOD!

Moreover – by excluding ethnic Jews from their own Commonwealth, seems to me–on the part of ethnic-Jewish believers in Yeshua and those “elect from among the nations” who once were aliens from the Commonwealth of Israel more than a stretch.  Aren’t those of Judah-Jews-Israel within the POLITY or “jurisdiction” of their own Commonwealth?  Are they somehow “strangers from the covenants of promise?”  If ever there were a people who have among them the promises of the fathers, and the hope of final redemption . . . and of them can we boldly proclaim that they are “without God in the world?”  Think about that for a while.

Yes, they may not have appropriated all that the Father has preserved for their inheritance–but they abide within the Father’s house–and we, who squandered our inheritance and lived sumptuously among the nations–have now returned as the Prodigal Son, who by His mercy, have obtained mercy – how dare we boast that Ephraim has obtained mercy and our Jewish House, Judah, abides in disfavor with our Father…It is time we stop provoking them to anger and provoke them to jealousy that they would see the mercy of the Almighty upon us and accept us as citizens of the Commonwealth of Israel…Yes, time, indeed, for our Messianic brethren to expand their definition of the ISRAEL OF GOD!

 

WHAT IS MEANT BY “YES DISTINCTION” – “NO SEPARATION”?

WHAT IS MEANT BY “YES DISTINCTION” – “NO SEPARATION”?

Dear Brian – simply put – to answer your question: What exactly is meant by the terms: Yes Distinction – No Separation?

Ephraim and Judah have distinction but Ephraim and Judah are NOT separated.  Likewise, the definition of what constitutes Israel is exceedingly important as far as its present interpretation(s).

It’s better understood when we compare this simplistic definition as we examine Replacement Theology wherein there is NO DISTINCTION and, consequently, NO SEPARATION – i.e., they do NOT see the distinction between Ephraim (aka, “the Church”) and Judah (aka, the Jews) or in their case between Israel and the Church – there’s no distinction and no separation because the Church subsumes Israel and becomes the SPIRITUAL ISRAEL and/or the TRUE ISRAEL of God defines today’s totality of the “Church.”

Frankly, the Church is the ONLY ISRAEL OF GOD – so NO DISTINCTION, NO SEPARATION – the Church is the “continuing Community of Grace” throughout the ages – no need for a Millennium and certainly no prophetic destiny for the Jews (and, by the way, they could care less if Ephraim were subsumed by Judah and the lot of them are just Jews) – and certainly, there is no significance (prophetically) for the State of Israel; therefore, why not Boycott, Divest, and Sanction – go for it!! The Jews were REJECTED because they rejected the Messiah! All “covenants” have been abrogated! There is no Abrahamic, Palestinian (land), Davidic (future Millennial reign) or even New Covenant – and as far as the Mosaic Covenant concerns: It’s extinguished as well!

WHEREAS:

Dispensationalism teaches that there is distinction between “Israel and the Church” (of course, in so saying this, there is NO EPHRAIM, the Church has nothing to do with Israel and/or Ephraim because as far as the dispensationalists are concerned (e.g., Dr. Watson [although under consideration] and Bro. Franz [although not a strict dispensationalist]) – is fairly well set that Ephraim was swallowed up primarily by Judah; not so much by the nations–although that as well; S. Douglas Woodward, and my beloved sister, Jerri Tuck–all embrace some, not all, forms of classical Dispensationalism).  Today’s Israel are simply “the Jews” (all 12 tribes are referred to as “Jews” – one can be a “Christian Jew” or one can be a “Jewish Jew” but still Jewish, still a Jew – it is an ethnic designation – some “Jewish Jews” take offense that one can be described as a “Christian Jew” – therefore, some Christian Jews preferred to be called “Messianic Jews”).

Again: Judah (the “Unbelieving Jews”) have subsumed Ephraim and what’s left is the Church (the “Elect from among the nations” and also Jews (defined as all the 12 tribes of ancient Israel, aka, the Jews–brought into the “Church”:) which has nothing to do with Ephraim, ipso facto Ephraim has nothing to do with Israel – the Church is comprised of Jew and Gentile–saved by the blood of Jesus–the “Elect from among the Nations” is NOT Ephraim, for why should Jews of Judah be joined unto Ephraim?!

So, with Dispensationalism there IS DISTINCTION – but it is a “dispensational distinction” as so described between “Israel” [so defined] and the “Church” [so defined]. In Dispensationalism there is total SEPARATION between the Church and Israel (forget any definition having to do with Ephraim being a part of ALL ISRAEL (Rom. 9:6; 11:26) or the ISRAEL OF GOD (Gal. 6:16) – that’s because the Church cannot be defined by Ephraim–she is TOTALLY SEPARATED from the “natural branches”). The Church is separated from the unbelieving Jews (Jews which are comprised of the subsumed Ephraim into Judah from history past.

Furthermore, forget Romans 9:20-28 (it’s naught but an allegory or at best a metaphor)–notwithstanding, mercy shown to the:

“. . . vessels of wrath . . . of the Gentiles . . . ‘I will call them My people, who were not My people, and her beloved, who was not beloved, and it shall come to pass IN THE PLACE where it was said to them, ‘You are not My people,’ there they shall be called sons of the living God‘” (Rom. 11:24-26; Hosea 2:23; 1:10).

Likewise, the prophecy found in Ezk. 37:15-28 – the Two Stick prophecy – is irrelevant or, at best, this prophecy has already taken place (Ephraim has been subsumed by Judah and there weren’t that many 10-tribe Israelites “swallowed up” by the nations in the first place). Moreover, Ephraim (now swallowed up by Judah) will be miraculously taken out of Judah in the “latter days” just before the Second Coming when the Almighty makes them ONE STICK in the Hand of the LORD. [I know, sounds a bit redundant since the two are in their minds already joined together.]

But there is YES DISTINCTION and YES SEPARATION – even into the Millennial Era where the Church (having nothing to do with Ephraim because those are just Jews/Judah/All Israel) is like a Satellite orbiting above the Earth as the Bride of Messiah (Walvoord) for 1,000 years; all the while the Jews/Israel are/is upon the earth ruling and reigning with the “David, My Servant” – although they confirm that the saints rule and reign with Christ a thousand years like good ‘ole Chialists once affirmed.

On the “downside” – the Jews rejected the KINGDOM offered at Messiah’s First Coming – “it [the offering of the kingdom to Israel] has been postponed” until the Jews cry out “Blessed is He Who comes in the Name of the Lord!“
Jews today (all 12 tribes) are outside of the Commonwealth of Israel–they have their own prophetic destiny but are not included in the Bride of Messiah and will, by themselves, undergo the 70th Week of Daniel and their own “Jacob’s Trouble” – neither this unbelieving “prophetic Israel” – nor, in point of glaring fact, the Old Testament saints from Adam to the Cross, will participate in the Marriage of the Lamb nor the Wedding Feast (just as guests to the “Wedding Feast”); and they are NOT the Bride of Messiah in any way, shape or form – they have their own New Covenant which is NOT the same as the Mediator of the New Covenant or the New Covenant offered to Christians–TOTAL SEPARATION is the norm! Jews after the Church’s rapture will preach “this gospel of the kingdom” (Matt. 24:14) which is NOT the “gospel of the grace of God” which is in view in Acts 20:24 – why? Because the gospel that the Jews will preach after the Rapture will NOT produce the Bride of Messiah–only “tribulation saints” – and no more!

You can see then:

REPLACEMENT THEOLOGIES (RT):
NO DISTINCTION – NO SEPARATION

DISPENSATIONALISM
YES DISTINCTION – YES SEPARATION

They either place Israel in subsumption (RT) or, and forgive me to say this, ghettoize the Jews keeping them apart from the Elect from among the Nations both prophetically in the latter days, up through the reign of “David, My Servant” (Ezk. 37:24-25). In their interpretations concerning WHO IS ISRAEL?–neither one (RT or Dispy) sees today’s Israel as Ephraim and Judah – neither one.

COMMONWEALTH THEOLOGY

YES DISTINCTION – Yes we see there is Israel and the Church but we see Israel as Judah (the Jews – both unbelieving and believing) and Ephraim (the Church, or the ELECT FROM AMONG THE NATIONS)…We see DISTINCTION but NOT the same way that the Dispensationalists see distinction, in that they have Ephraim subsumed by Judah – NOT SO WITH CT!!

NO SEPARATION – We affirm (but NOT like the Replacement Theologians) that there is no separation between Judah (the Jews) and Ephraim (the Christians) – this is a profoundly prophetic statement in that unbelieving Jews/National Israel shall come into full prophetic fulfillment in accordance with Romans 11:25-27 when ALL ISRAEL SHALL BE DELIVERED – meanwhile, we wish to keep both believing Judah (Jews) and Christians in the One New Man, the ONE BODY, the New Creation, the Bride of Messiah.

BUT, and here’s our little twist – BOTH PROPHETIC JUDAH/JEWS and the ONE-NEW MAN (Jews and Christians) are NOW within the Commonwealth of Israel (Eph. 2:12) – why? Because even in unbelief they have a most peculiar prophetic destiny and God Almighty is gathering them NOW back into the Land and the fact that they are but “blinded in part” – so they are not as the other tribes of the earth! Ultimately the Natural Branches are wholly grafted in again into the ONE ROOT with the wild branches – the Prodigal (Ephraim) is in the house of the Father WITH the Faithful Son, Judah (Note: Judah was NEVER divorced, but Israel/Ephraim was but then mercy would be shown on her–Ezk. 6:9, Jer. 3:8; Hos. 1:6-7, 9-10; 2:2, 23; 2 Kings 17:18-23).

So – defining these terms is incredibly important – so, when we say under CT: YES DISTINCTION – we mean it differently than the NO DISTINCTION of RT and, for that matter Dispensationalism. Dispensationalism’s YES DISTINCTION is not the same as the YES of CT because the definition of the term Israel is different. When we say NO SEPARATION we mean it differently than RT (which subsumes Judah/Jews which they see as just an ethnic designation of “Jews” or worse, “fake Jews”); and Dispensationalism, of course, which demands their own brand of “separation” between National Israel and the Church – can you follow me?

I would be happy to explain this more clearly if need be; however, in my two articles and additional material, I have attempted to explained it – but thank you for inquiring.

NO, it is NOT easy to explain this due to the millennia which have distorted the FACT OF THE MATTER. The doctrines (esp. eschatology) embedded in Commonwealth Theology are, I believe, SUPERIOR to those of the Replacement/Reform theologians and their anti-chialism eschtologies which disinherit the Jews of Judah and distort any distinction between Ephraim and Judah.

Furthermore, the many doctrinal inaccuracies within dispensational theology are resolved by the insightful and moderate proposal embedded in CT – in essence, CT embellishes and clarifies the distinctions between “Israel and the Church” by clarifying the identities of Judah and Ephraim; and, simultaneously, adheres to the singularity of NO SEPARATION espoused within Reform thinking (e.g., the New Covenant is NOW a New Testament reality – not just the “spiritual blessings” of the New Covenant but the New Covenant as described in the O.T. passages is enjoyed today–Jer. 31:31-37; 32:40; Ezk. 36:16-38).

Fundamentally, it must be understood, today’s Jews (Judah) who are brought into the ONE BODY OF MESSIAH, the ONE NEW MAN, the NEW CREATION where there is “neither Jew nor Greek” are altogether A NEW CREATION. The phenomenon of Messianic Congregations where Jewish-style practices take place and where there is a greater recognition of the Torah in daily living are NOT separate from the “goyim” who are members of the One Body–there is “neither Jew nor Greek” – however, just as there is neither “male nor female” – there abides Jewish Christians and Christians who are non-Jewish–it is what it is.

The “assimilating influences” of the overwhelming number of “goyim” within the ONE BODY tends to “swallow up” the Jewish Christians; however, with the rebirth of the State of Israel, that mitigating influence (i.e., the loss of “Jewishness” juxtaposed to “the Elect from the Nations”) has been diminished – and all the more with the rise of “Messianic Judaism” – which is readily recognized by Christians of non-Jewish backgrounds but vociferously resisted as a branch of Judaism by non-believing Jews (however, not like it used to be – an encouraging development indeed!).

Messianic Congregations which wholeheartedly welcome BOTH believing Jews and folks with non-Jewish backgrounds provide extraordinary examples of true unity in Messiah and should be encouraged to thrive!

Bless and Shalom – Doug Krieger