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Jews
Topic Started: June 18, 2018, 7:30 am (91 Views)
Blackjack

Something I have been pondering for a long time. It greatly bothers me. What am I missing here?

Two things I know are true, without question.

1) God, as he promised, has miraculously preserved the Jews, as separate people, for nearly 2000 years. This is undeniably true. Just look around.

2) Nobody is saved apart from Jesus. Also undeniably true. Jesus himself said so.

So, here we have at least 50 generations of Jews, that God preserved as a people, who, for whatever reason, did not accept Jesus as messiah. Indeed! Why should they have done so when they were persecuted by Christians for nearly all of the past 2000 years? Even I can see how Jesus would not appeal to them under those circumstances. Are these all lost? Why preserve a people for 2000 years if all but a small group, alive when Jesus returns, are the only ones saved?

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Chronus

Hi Blackjack,

I think your concerns are similar to the concerns Paul addresses in Romans chapters 9 through 11.

Paul appears concerned about the Israelites’ rejection of the Messiah. Indeed, they are the ones given the adoption, the covenants, and the promises as given to the fathers (9:1-5). However, we see the Apostle concludes that God’s promise did not fail (9:6) because “they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel; nor are they all children because they are Abraham’s descendants”.

Continuing with verse 8, it says, “That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants.” In other words, it’s not the biological children (children of the flesh) but the children of promise who are the true Israelites.

Can you see how Paul is addressing their (and your) concern? His explanation as to why many of the Jews reject Jesus is because they are not truly of Israel. A true Israelite (one who receives the promises) is one called by God in accord to His election. Paul demonstrates this gracious act of God’s calling in the subsequent verses, 9-18. True Israelites receive the word of promise “not because of works but because of Him who calls” (9:11).

Now, concerning your other question: “Why preserve a people for 2000 years if all but a small group, alive when Jesus returns, are the only ones saved? “

I don’t think you are applying the word “preserve” to the right group of people. You appear to be applying it to the entire biological race of Israelites (children of the flesh), something which Paul clearly said does NOT define a true Israelite (again, see Romans 9:6-8). Rather, you should apply the word “preserve” to that “small group”.

Paul does this very thing in Romans 11. Even though most of the Israelites in his time were rejecting Jesus, there was a small group, “a remnant”, who were being preserved through God’s grace:

“In the same way then, there has also come to be at the present time a remnant according to God’s gracious choice. But if it is by grace, it is no longer on the basis of works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.” - Romans 11:5-6.

So then, God’s promise is indeed triumphant! Not one is lost. All of Israel is saved because a true Israelite positively responds to the Gospel of Jesus and inherits all the promises!
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Blackjack

Hmmm. Much to consider. Thank you.
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M. Hawbaker
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It is true that historically the majority of the Jewish people have rejected Christ, but there has always been a small but strong believing Jewish remnant throughout the whole Church age.

Even today, it is estimated that in the USA alone there are 250,000 "Jews for Jesus" and other messianic Jewish believers.
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