I think one of the main reasons behind a lot of the theological confusion existing today is that we try too hard to apply a black-and-white Greek linear way of thinking to Scriptural realities that cannot so easily be fitted into nice and easy-to-understand categorical boxes.
The general black-and-white assumption prevalent in so many churches is as follows:
a) Messiah came for His people Israel.
b) His people Israel rejected Him.
c) Therefore, Messiah in turn rejected His original people Israel and decided to create a new chosen people from among the Gentiles.
This simplistic reasoning is fraught with difficulties.
The first step towards clearing things up is to understand that God has ONLY made a covenant with Israel (when I say Israel I’m referring to all 12 tribes).
Let me say that again.
For His own good purposes, God has ONLY made a covenant with Israel.
“Behold, the days are coming,
declares the Lord,
when I will make a new covenant
with the house of Israel and
the house of Judah.“
The Scriptures don’t say the day is coming when God will make a New Covenant with Denmark, China or any other Gentile nation for that matter, ONLY Israel.
So get this eternally irreversible FACT firmly lodged into the deepest of deepest recesses of your cranium.
God has only made a covenant with His Chosen people Israel and THIS WILL NEVER CHANGE.
Thus, the ONLY way for a gentile to be saved is to have him or herself grafted into the covenants God has made with Israel.
As it was in the days of Exodus, so it is today.
You must enjoin yourself to Israel.
And today this is realized by accepting Israel’s Messiah Yeshua as Lord into your heart and wholeheartedly surrendering your life to Him.
Now let’s take a close look at assumption “b) His people Israel rejected Him” and how it is directly connected to one of the greatest theological errors of all time.
Although Israel as a nation rejected Yeshua, it DOES NOT invalidate the covenants God ONLY made with Israel.
Did you catch that?
Let me rephrase that thought for good measure.
Israel’s national rejection of Messiah does NOT INVALIDATE the covenants (old or new) that God has ONLY made with Israel.
And if you’re a gentile, you’d better be happy and relieved that Israel’s national rejection of Yeshua doesn’t invalidate the covenants God made with Israel.
Otherwise, there goes your salvation.
Let me say that one again as well.
If Israel’s national rejection of their Messiah caused God to go back on the covenants He made with Israel, both Jew and gentile no longer have a means of salvation.
In response, I can hear the gentile church rising up in an uproar with the following verse that the Apostle Paul also quoted in Romans 9:25:
“I will call them ‘my people’ who are not my people;
and I will call her ‘my loved one’ who is not my loved one.”
The gentile church just loooooooves to use this verse and many others like it strategically cherry picked to somehow substantiate that the church has replaced Israel.
First, in context, this verse from Hosea is speaking about the pardon AND RECONCILIATION promised to what had become the apostate Northern Kingdom of Israel.
Hosea is predicting that though He had disowned Israel for a time, He would eventually open the door for their return.
Actually, we see it happening today as remnants of the 10 lost tribes are now being airlifted back to Israel.
Second, are you seriously going to tell me that this one little verse overturns the very foundation of Scripture which is that God has ONLY chosen Israel to be His covenant people?
True, the Apostle Paul is prophetically applying Hosea 2:23 to the gentiles but it does NOT change the fact that the established salvation model in Scripture is that the gentiles are saved by being grafted into the covenants that God has ONLY made with Israel.
Heck, in the very same book of Romans, Paul makes it crystal clear that the gentiles are grafted into Israel (the Olive tree analogy), NOT vice versa.
So how can you take that one verse and say that God cancelled His Covenants with Israel and entered into a new covenant with some gentile nation?
No such notion exists anywhere in Scripture.
I reiterate what I just said.
If God cancelled the covenant He made with Israel, then your salvation IS GONE whether you’re a Jew or gentile.
That’s how closely linked a gentile’s salvation is to Israel.
And let’s examine that typical anti-Semitic statement “the Jews rejected Christ”.
I resent this statement.
“The Jews rejected Christ”?!
Yeshua’s 12 disciples were ALL Jewish.
So there’s 12 Jews who didn’t reject Yeshua.
How about the hundreds, possibly thousands of Jewish people Yeshua came into contact with during His earthly ministry?
I bet out of those numbers, there were quite a few Jews who didn’t reject Yeshua.
Or how about the thousands of Messianic Jews in the world today who have accepted Yeshua as Israel’s chosen Messiah?
And their numbers are growing in leaps and bounds.
In fact, I worship together with some of them at our Messianic congregation.
It doesn’t matter how many Jews rejected Christ.
God’s covenants with Israel still stand.
What’s more important is how many Jews have accepted Him.
CONNECTING THIS TEACHING TO THE NEW TESTAMENT
“I ask then: Did God reject his people?
By no means!
I am an Israelite myself,
a descendant of Abraham,
from the tribe of Benjamin.”
“If some of the branches have been broken off,
though a wild olive shoot,
have been grafted in among the others
and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root,
do not consider yourself to be superior to those other branches.
If you do, consider this:
You do not support the root,
but the root supports you.
You will say then,
“Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in.”
But they were broken off because of unbelief,
and you stand by faith.
Do not be arrogant,
For if God did not spare the natural branches,
he will not spare you either.”