As I examined the onslaught of hate historically vented toward Israel and the Jews, I wondered what prompted these Christian attacks. Why would theologians in the first millennium, during medieval times, and in this century unleash such persistent and violent assaults? Aside from the malicious myths, some idea, proposition, or declaration had to have begun this avalanche of hate. As I searched, it didn't take long to find and identify the poisoned spring -replacement theology.
In the first century, theological anti-Semitism began teaching that "the church os the new Israel." Gentile converts resented the priority of the Jewish people in God's economy. A spirit of arrogance and pride causes this theology of hate to still flourish today. The concept appeals to the ego.
Hitler sold this idea to the German people, screaming to his enraptured audience, "We are the true people of God." On the other side of the globe, the Japanese called themselves the "sons of heaven." Of course, every American knows they are both wrong because God loves US best. Surely He's sitting on His throne waving the Stars and Stripes.
Replacement theologians must use the allegorical method of interpreting Scripture to support this position. This method, which was first taught in Alexandria and is based on the Platonic doctrine of ideas, spiritualizes the biblical text and purports to plumb hidden spiritual significance, yet it completely avoids the historical and literal meaning. Using the allegorical method of biblical interpretation, you can create a theology that says anything you want it to say. It's not truth; it's completely without biblical foundation. It's God's Word twisted to tell a lie.
* Romans 11:1: I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.
* 2: God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elias? how he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying,
* 11: I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy.
* 32: For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.
In Revelation 7:4-8, physical Israel is alive and well, represented by twelve tribes and 144,000 who were sealed by God to preach the gospel during the Great Tribulation.
In 1948 Israel was reborn, Isa:66:8: and the Seed of Abraham returned to the Promised Land to become one of the world's most dynamic nations. Replaced? Never. Revived? Yes!
The prophet Zechariah describes the coming of the Messiah: 10: And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn." Until we grasp the concept of Israel peacefully coexisting and never replacing each other, we will fall into the false doctrine of past centuries.
Bible scholars write, "What is also clear from the whole thrust of the discussion in Romans 9-11, is that God's purpose for the salvation of Israel will be realized in no other way and by no other means than through the preaching of the gospel and the response of faith." [Kaiser, Davids, Bruce, and Brauch.]
On May 15, 1948, a theological earthquake leveled replacement theology when the State of Israel was reborn. From the four corners of the earth, the Seed of Abraham returned to the land of their fathers. They arose from their Gentile "graves" [Ezek 37:12] speaking sixty different languages, and they founded a nation that has become a superpower in forty years. Far from passing away, the State of Israel is building, growing, inventing, and developing. The desert is indeed blooming like a rose, just as Isaiah the prophet promised [35:1]
You can't avoid the central issue. If God was finished with the Jews and Israel, if they were really a cast-off relic of the past without divine purpose or destiny, why did He allow the State to be miraculously renewed? If replaced, why reborn?
The resurrection of God's chosen people is living prophetic proof that Israel has not been replaced. THey were reborn in a day [Isa. 66:8] to form the State of Israel that shall endure until the coming of the Messiah.
Isaiah 43:5-6, 35:10, 61:4, 44:26; Ezekiel 20:33-34, 40-42, 34:28-30,
11:17-19, Jeremiah 31:10-12, 30:3, 10-11; Psalms 126:1-2, 107:1-2; Zechariah 1:14-17.
Jesus did not support Replacement Theology. Let's look at Matthew
24:15-18, where Jesus described the great period of tribulation that will come upon the earth. The "holy place" Jesus mentioned is the temple in Jerusalem. The Jews are in control of the temple at this time right before the Tribulation. How could they control the temple without being in control of Jerusalem? How could they be in control of Jerusal if they were replaced?
Replacement theology is idolatry and violates the Ten Commandments. 1 Samuel 15:23 says "For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry." Who is a stubborn person? People who refuse to change their ideas even when they are in direct conflict with God's Word. These people idolize their opinions and are soon in open rebellion against the will and Word of God.
From the dark days of Jewish persecution in Germany, a legend has survived. According to the story, a pastor, acting on Nazi orders, looked out upon his congregation and told them, "All of you who had Jewish fathers will leave and not return."
A few worshipers rose and slipped out of the sanctuary. The pastor then said, "All of you who had Jewish mothers must go and not return."
Again, a few worshipers arose and departed. Suddenly those who remained in their pews turned pale and began to tremble with fear. The figure of Christ on the cross above the alter loosed itself and left the church.
-John Hagee "Final Dawn over Jerusalem."
For a full treatment on Replacement Theology and the Rapture, we suggest Zola's books Raptured and Broken Branches: Zola on Replacement Theology. They are inexpensive and good works to read with the appropriate Scripture references.
In brief, replacement theology states that the Church has replaced Israel in God's dealings with man, and Scripture should be read this way. One has to shut his eyes to the prophetic fulfillment of the Jews returning to the land, and a thousand verses of Scripture having to do with the end times and God continuing to deal with the Jews. The doctrine seems to serve anti-Semitic preferences making the Jews and Israel (and finally the Scriptures) virtually irrelevant.
<A href="http://www.levitt.com/">Zola Levitt Ministries</a>
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