This post is not intended to be a defense or attempt at rationalizing Israel’s current press into Gaza. Whether, from a human perspective, one believes Israel is defending or being the aggressor as it flattens Palestinian lands because of Hamas’ barbarism is discussed on an hourly basis by social media pundits and channel surfing between MSNBC, Al Jazeera, Newsmax, and Fox. Instead, this article is an attempt to offer a supernatural perspective, attempting to gain insight on God’s view of the Jewish race and therefore how we, as Biblical Christians should respond to the current middle east conflict.
To begin, many understandably reject the whole concept of a “Jewish race” as a prerequisite for any form of contemporary Biblical interpretation. They offer the valid observation that one can become a Jew by simply choosing to follow Jewish traditions. More to the point, God acknowledges that there are both Jews who follow His precepts and those who are Jews in name only (Rom. 9:6-7, 2:28-29). Finally, within the systematic theology of a Biblical Christian, it is unquestionably true that Jews hold no favored place in eternal salvation, which comes exclusively from God’s grace and our faith in Christ alone (Eph. 2:8-9). If one accepts Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord, it makes no difference what their pedigree is. And, conversely, if one rejects Christ, their fate is sealed to eternal punishment, regardless of their lineage or human associations.
Is that the end of the discussion? After all, the vast majority of Jews are secular and agnostic. Those who do hold major parts of the Old Testament to be inspired by God totally reject Jesus as the Messiah. Messianic Jews (those who believe in Jesus’ divinity) are estimated to be, at most, 350k worldwide out of a total population of 14.7 million practicing Jews (Worldwide).
So, shouldn’t Jews be treated just like any other humanly defined sub-set of the population, devoid of any special consideration by God?
I would offer that any mature Christian familiar with Scripture likely recoils at the thought of that position. That gut response is the Holy Spirit speaking to the heart.
Has the Church Replaced the Jews?
There is no question that a dispensational view of the New Testament offers support for the idea that the church has taken on the role of God’s “chosen people” (1 Peter 2:9). In its extreme, this viewpoint has a name, “replacement theology”, and proposes that when Scripture looks forward, past the death of Jesus, any reference to “Israel” or “Jews” is to be redefined as “the church”. There are many problems with this interpretation beyond a simple rejection of parsimony (accepting the simplest and obvious explanation on a subject). Opponents to replacement theology offer other challenges such as the continuing existence (survival) of the Jewish people over time up to the present, and the reality of the modern state of Israel, all prophesied from the Old Testament. God has not condemned nor replaced the Jews or their homeland (Israel) with the church. He has, instead, kept His covenants with the Jews and added the church as called out in the New Testament.
What Does the Bible Say About the Jewish People?
Below is a very brief offering that Scripturally documents a continuing and unique relationship between the Jewish people and the Creator of the universe.
- There will be a mass return of Jews to the land of Israel (Deuteronomy 30:3; Isaiah 43:6; Ezekiel 34:11-13; 36:24; 37:1-14).
- The Antichrist will make a 7-year covenant of “peace” with Israel (Isaiah 28:18; Daniel 9:27).
- The temple will be rebuilt in Jerusalem (Daniel 9:27; Matthew 24:15; 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4; Revelation 11:1).
- The Antichrist will break his covenant with Israel, and worldwide persecution of Israel will result (Daniel 9:27; 12:1, 11; Zechariah 11:16; Matthew 24:15, 21; Revelation 12:13).
- Israel will be invaded (Ezekiel chapters 38-39).
- Israel will finally recognize Jesus as their Messiah (Zechariah 12:10).
- Israel will be regenerated, restored, and regathered (Jeremiah 33:8; Ezekiel 11:17; Romans 11:26).
Note that these Scripture references (and many more) move from deep within the foundation of God’s relationship with the Jewish people through to the present and beyond to end-times prophesy. If one accepts the Bible as a source of insight into the mind of God one cannot argue with the special and continued calling out of the Jewish people group.
What Other Rational is there for a Godly-Jewish Relationship?
Mat Staver, chairman of the Liberty Counsel wrote an article published by CBN in November of 2023 titled, “Why Israel Matters”. He provides a very brief but excellent history and perspective of the Jewish people and the miraculous nature of their continuing survival. Further, Staver reminds us that the foundation, (both literal and figurative), and birthplace of the Christian faith is rooted in Israel, the very place that its enemies wish to remove from the face of the earth. He concludes by reminding all Christians that, from God’s perspective,
Genesis 12:3 – I will bless those who bless you, and him who dishonors you I will curse, and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
To ignore or replace Israel and/or the Jewish people, having both historical and continuing involvement in God’s plans and care, paints a less than complete picture of the Lord’s prophecies and intent. This is particularly true today as we all try to weigh our opinions in support vs repudiation of the ongoing war. God still has much to do with the Jews as His original people.
As Christians, we need to think carefully about relegating the Jews into the general population and viewing the current conflict under purely secular standards of fairness and justice.
Put succinctly from God’s own words…
Romans 9:4-5 – They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen
There remains a special and unique place in God’s heart for the Jews. As Christians, we need to acknowledge that point through the lens of today’s conflicts, insuring that our personal views do not supersede God’s . The last thing we, as Biblical Christians, need to be is in opposition with our Lord and Savior.
Acts 5:38b-39 if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God!” So they took his advice.
Today, we need to take the same advice offered in the book of Acts. Make no mistake, the ongoing middle east conflict is a supernatural war not merely a secular human battleground.