Tuesday, April 24, 2018

The Abrahamic Covenant, by Dr. George B. Fletcher, Ch. 16

Chapter XVI
     Under the Old Covenant there was a "middle wall of partition" between the Jew and the Gentile; under the New Covenant this partition has been "broken down" and completely done away forever! Now there is no difference as to guilt (Rom. 3:9, 23), or as to salvation (Rom. 10:12, 13), between these two great segments of humanity. Galatians 3:22 -- "The Scripture hath concluded ALL (both Jew and Gentile} under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them (Jew or Gentile} that believe." And again, Romans 11:32 -- "God hath concluded them ALL (Jew and Gentile) in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon ALL (Jew and Gentile)." These two great divisions of humanity now stand on a basis of equal privilege before God in Christ: Ephesians 3:5,6 -- "which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, AS IT IS NOW REVEALED unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; THAT THE GENTILES SHOULD BE FELLOW HEIRS, AND OF THE SAME BODY, AND PARTAKERS OF HIS PROMISE IN OIRIST BY THE GOSPEL."
     Yea, more -- God's purpose in breaking down the middle wall of partition is to make both (Jew and Gentile) ONE (in Christ), for "to make in Himself' (Christ) of TWAIN (Jew and Gentile) ONE NEW MAN". This ONENESS and UNITY is fully expressed in Ephesians 2:11-?2. There is one PEACE, one PEOPLE, one NEW MAN, one BODY, one SPIRIT, one FATHER, one COMMONWEALTH, one HOUSEHOLD, one FOUNDATION, one HOLY TEMPLE, one VINE, one ELECTION OF GRACE, and one GOOD OLIVE TREE. God is creating by the miracle of free mercy and sovereign grace a NEW HUMANITY, or NEW CREATION. Ephesians 1:10 -- "That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him." It was necessary that the law of command­ments" should be abolished, cancelled, utterly done away and the "middle wall of partition" be broken down before peace could be made and a NEW HUMANITY created. The first humanity or old creation was physical (Gen. 2:18); the new humanity or new creation is spiritual (2 Cor. 5:17).
In the old creation, God created the house first, and then the tenant to occupy the house; but in the new creation, He is creating the ONE NEW MAN first, and then the NEW HEAVENS AND NEW EARTH, -- their eternal home. The ONE NEW MAN (Eph. 2:15) as God's NEW CREATION (2 Cor. 5:17) is His workmanship (Eph. 2:10), and is the true Israel of God. Galatians 6:15, 16 -- "For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision (point to the Jew) availeth anything, nor uncircumcision (pointing to the Gentile), but a NEW CREATURE. And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the ISRAEL OF GOD." That this phrase "the Israel of God" refers to the
Church is evident in the light of Romans 9: 6-8: -- "For they are not all Israel which are of Israel; neither, be­cause they are the seed of Abraham, are· they all children: but, in Isaac shall thy seed be called. That is, they which are the children of the flesh, these ARE NOT the children of God: but the CHILDREN OF THE PROMISE are counted for the seed." Or again, in Romans 2 :28,29: -­"For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh; But he is a Jew, which is one INWARDLY; and circumcision is that OF THE HEART, IN THE SPIRIT, AND NOT IN THE LETTER; whose praise is not of men, but of God."
     God's purpose in creating this NEW HUMANITY is to exhibit to the world even now a holy people zealous of good works (Titus 2:14) and to fulfill to them the "ex­ceeding great and precious promises" under the Old Cov­enant which have never yet been fulfilled; and to give to this NEW HUMANITY a NEW HEAVEN AND NEW EARTH wherein dwelleth righteousness (2 Peter 3:13; Rev. 21:1, 4). The original gospel promise preached to Abraham (Gal. 3:8) has been made good to all that are of faith down through the centuries , yea millenniums (Gal. 3:7, 9). Galatians 3:29 -- "And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise." The promise to make of Abraham's offspring "a great nation" (Gen. 12:2) fulfilled in the natural to his seed after the flesh was a type of the real thing intended; namely, Abraham's spiritual seed of ALL nations (whether Jew or Gentile), which latter seed only and alone are constituted a "holy nation" (1 Peter 2:9), which is the Church (compare Matt. 21:43). The promise to make his name great and a blessing (Gen. 12:2) has likewise found its fulfillment in the natural to his seed after the flesh, a type of the real thing intended fulfilled in the realm of the spiritual in his spiritual seed of faith from among ALL nations, both Jew and Gentile (Rom. 4:11,12). The promise of blessing to those that bless thee (Gen. 12:3) is made good only to those that have "inherited the promises" ( Heb. 6:12); namely, all that are of faith , that is, the church (2 Pet. 1:4). Our Lord Jesus Christ defends the Church against her enemies, and fulfills to all such his promise of judgment, namely, "I will curse him that curseth thee." The Scriptures do not teach that the Church will escape suffering and persecution, but they do teach that the Mystical Body of Christ is absolutely non-destructible; that God will defend it and that He will curse all of its enemies. Matthew 16:18 is the promise of Christ; "The gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Let it not be forgotten that the only ones that are scripturally called the "chosen people of God" are those who have been born again (John 1:12,13; 3:3, 5; Eph. 1:4,5). Thus, ALL the promises made to those that were of faith within the nation of Israel have found, are finding, and will find their perfect fulfillment in the Church, the new and spiritual Israel of God (Eph. 3:20, 21). 2 Corinthians 1:20 -- "For ALL THE PROMISES OF GOD in Him (Christ) are yea, and in Him Amen, unto the glory of God BY US." Therefore, instead of having our minds confused by all the cunningly devised Jewish fables concerning Palestine, Israeli, and the disobedient, carnal, and unbelieving Jew, let us feast in faith and hope on the gracious promises of God to His true people o:f both the Old and the New Testament, and pray· for their wonderful fulfillment in our hearts individually and in our churches with all the accompanying signs and wonders which have marked the Church of Jesus Christ (Dan. 11:32; 12:10), down through the centuries.
     The prophets teach us that the Messiah was ordained to destroy national Israel because of her sins (Dan. 9:24- 27; Isa. 5:1-7; compare Matt. 21:33-46), and to give the spiritual REMNANT a NEW NAME: The Lord God shall slay thee and call His servants by another name" (Isa. 65:15). In the New Testament we find the :fulfillment of this prophecy: "The disciples were called Christians first in Antioch" (Acts 11:26). We quote Saint Cyril, Bishop of Jerusalem in the fourth century, who wrote the following on Isaiah 65:15:­­
     "Jesus Christ being the Son of God gave us the dignity of
     being called Christians. But some will say, the name of
     'Christian' is new, and v1as not in use a:foretime; the new-
     fashioned phrases are often objected to on the score of
     strangeness. The prophet made this point safe beforehand
     saying, 'But upon my servants shall a NEW NAME be
     called, which shall be blessed upon the earth. ' Let us
     question the Jews: Are ye servants of the Lord, or not?
     Shew then your new name. For ye were called Jews and
     Israelites in the time of Moses, and 'the other prophets,
     and after the return from Babylon, and up to the present
     time: where then is your· new name? But we, since we
     are the servants of the Lord have that NEW NAME, which
     shall be blessed upon the earth -- it is the Name of the
     Only-Begotten Son of God that is proclaimed."
     (Post Nicene Fathers, Vol. 7, pp. 61, 62).
     The nation Israeli, and all other Jews scattered among the nations have no prophetic destiny, except a continuance of their sad and bitter state, so long as they continue disobedient and unbelieving (Rom. 10: 19-21). Instead of Israel becoming the head of the nations in some supposed future millennial period, our Lord taught the exact opposite and declared that their LAST STATE would be worse than the first (Matt. 12:38-45). In the closing verses of the same chanter our Lord declares that the only ones who have a Spiritual, eternal, and saving relationship to Him are they that "do the will of my Father which is in heaven" (Matt. 12: 46-50). These only and alone are "his brethren" (compare Matt. 25:40); namely, Christians (Heb. 2:12-16). "Cut off" nationally, Jews individually may be grafted again into the "good olive tree" through faith in Jesus of Nazareth, as the promised Messiah, only Saviour of sinners, and the Second Person of the glorious Trinity, co-equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Meanwhile, Gentiles who are "wild olive branches" by nature may likewise be individually grafted into the "good olive tree" in the same way of personal faith in Christ Jesus our Lord. All that truly believe on the Lord Jesus Christ from among the Jewish people shall partake of the 11 root and fatness of the olive tree" in glorious salvation (Rom. 11:23; 2 Timothy 2:10). That, however, will give them no prophetic future as a separate group, or as a nation. They will then lose their distinct existence by absorption into the Christian Church (Gal. 3 :28; Eph. 3: 5, 6). The closed book of Israel's history as a chosen nation after the flesh in covenant relationship with God will never be reopened -- NEVER!
     We conclude with the words of William Brown in his article entitled "The Church and the Mystery", in the Conquering and to Conquer magazine for Nov. - Dec.1962:
     "I pray God that we shall be delivered from these 'Jewish
     Fables," and that, by His Spirit, He will lead us into the
     "doctrine of Christ;" which things is found, not in the
     murky mazes of Judaism, or in the carnal ideology of
     Zionism, nor indeed in Dispensationalism, or Anglo-
     Israelism, their modern bedfellows, but in the pure un-
     mingled Word of God wherein are to be found the
     precious treasures of Apostolic Christianity. Oh for the
     holy boldness to taice upon our lips the great truths of
     Romans and Galatians, and as with a trumpet herald them
     far and wide to a bewildered and well nigh bewitched
     Christendom! God have mercy on us who profess to glory
     in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ should we continue
     to hold a place for that which it so violently condemns; or
     build again those things it so utterly and eternally
     destroyed! Amen.

The Abrahamic Covenant, by Dr. George B. Fletcher, Ch. 15, Part 3

Chapter XV
Part 3
Mystery Babylon
     In this series of articles on the Abrahamic Covenant I have endeavored to show from the Scripture: (1) That the basis of Israel's national relationship to God was the Old Covenant, which covenant is now abolished and has vanished away forever; hence, Israel after the flesh in national capacity is no longer the chosen people of God, or in postponed covenant relationship to God to be re­instituted at some future date. (2) That the Israeli nation in Palestine is not a fulfillment of Bible pro­phecy, but the carnal expectations of apostate unbelieving Jews. In respect to the important subject of the KINGDOM OF GOD twentieth century dispensationalism is practically identical with the .first century RABBINISM. For the cardinal doctrine of the Jewish Rabbis of Christ's day was that, according to the predictions of the prophets of Israel, the purpose and result of the Messiah's mission would be the re-constituting of the Jewish nation; the re-occupation by them of the land of Palestine; the setting up again of the earthly throne of David; and the exaltation of the people of Israel to the place of supremacy in the world. (3) That the "all Israel" that shall be saved, is the total election of grace :from among Jews throughout the centuries. (4) That "the rest were blinded" (Rom. 11:7) involves a conspiracy of world domination. That just AS there was a Satanic leadership within the apostate Jewish nation at the First Advent of their Messiah (Mark 15:1, 9-11) who sought the cruci­fixion of OIRIST PERSONAL (1 Thess. 2:15, 16), SO there is within the reprobate portion of the apostate-nation a hard, radical, revolutionary core of conspirators who aim at the world-wide overthrow of civilization and the destruction of CHRIST MYSTICAL, which is His Church and hence the annihilation of the Christian :faith. (5) That there is an apparent great Jewish conspiracy based on the "dream of Messianic world power" and that Political Zionism which has the Protocols as its plan of conquest and the Talmud as its Bible is the instrument :for its fulfillment. The United Nations Organization is the symbol of its authority and Jewish writers have tradi­tionally claimed the U.N.O. idea as a Jewish invention. Israel's Premier Ben Gurion told a TIME magazine cor­respondent (see TIME, August 16, 1948), "I consider that the United Nations ideal is a Jewish idea."
     And now we bring this chapter to a close by a brief exposition of Mystery Babylon as recorded in Rev. 17 and 18. Mystery Babylon is represented under a double symbolism, namely, that of a WOMAN (Rev. 17:1) a counter­feit Church, and a CITY (Rev. 17:18) a Luciferian kingdom of evil. Both of these elements must be borne in mind, for while there is ONENESS yet there is also DISTINCTION, for the WOMAN (religious phase of Mystery Babylon) is destroyed by ten kings under the Anti-Christ (Rev. 17: 16, 17), and the CITY (political phase of Mystery Babylon) is destroyed by God (Rev. 18:20). Inasmuch as Christ has a Bride the Church, and a Kingdom, so also will the Anti­-Christ have a counterfeit church and kingdom. The Old Testament background for this vision of Mystery Babylon given to the apostle John is Ezekiel 16:8-22. The Jews under the Old Covenant were the chosen nation in covenant relationship to God (Psa. 147:19, 20), but from the very beginning it was manifest there were within the nation two seeds, namely, "the children of the flesh," and "the children of God" (Rom. 9:6-8). The nation is portrayed as a harlot in Ezekiel 23, but God did not utterly break off his promises, nor take away the inheritance of the true children of Abraham within the nation who were a remnant according to the election of grace (Gal. 3:6-9; Rom. 11:5). Nevertheless the apostate portion killed the Lord ·Jesus (1 Thess. 2:15; Matt. 21:33-46) and were the descendants of those who had killed the prophets (Matt. 23:34-46; Acts 7:52; Rev. 18:24). With the resurrection of our Lord .from the dead, the Old Covenant was terminated forever (Heb. 8:13), the kingdom given to another nation bringing forth the fruits thereof, the Church ( 1 Peter 2:9), and the gospel preached among ALL nations and no longer to just one nation, the Jewish.
     As it was with the ONE nation under the Old Covenant, so has it been with the Church among ALL nations under the New Covenant: there are two seeds -- "the children of the flesh," and "the children of the Spirit11 (Gal. 4:29). Just AS the spiritual seed within the ONE NATION under the Old Covenant and the spiritual seed among ALL NATIONS under the New Covenant are ONE AND THE SAME, namely, the true Bride of Christ (John 10:16; Eph. 1:10), SO the children of the flesh within the ONE NATION under the Old Covenant are ONE AND THE SAME with the children of the flesh among ALL NATIONS who profess faith but are the paramour of the Anti-Christ (Titus 1:16). Therefore this WOMAN of Rev. 17 is called "MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH (Rev. 17:5), and in its ultimate and final mani­festation will be the fulfillment of' the FIRST HALF of the apostle Paul's prophecy in 2 Thess. 2:3 -- " ... a falling away first." This final apostasy within the professing Church among all nations in the end time is the RELIGIOUS side of Mystery Babylon portrayed as the Mother of harlots. The Mother is corrupt and apostate Judaism, and her harlots the apostate churches and anti­christian faiths within Christendom gathered together in one great Ecumenical Brotherhood movement. It will outwardly look like a Church, but is revealed as a "great harlot" (Rev . 17:1), and the paramour of the Anti-Christ. In the final days of fulfillment preceding the Second Advent of Christ the WOMAN (symbol of universal and total anti-Christian religious seduction - Prov. 7:4-27) is seen riding on the Beast (symbol of universal and total anti-Christian political world power - Rev. 17:3). Thus corrupt world government and universal false religion will join hands as at the First Advent under Pilate and Caiaphas (Acts 4:27, 28; Prov. 11:21).
     The WOMAN phase of Mystery Babylon will be destroyed by ten kings under the Anti-Christ (Rev. 17:15), who will in this but fulfill the will of God (Rev. 17: 17}. When this is accomplished in the progressive fulfillment of end time events, the WOMAN phase (religious) will merge into the CITY phase (political) of Mystery Babylon and thus fulfill the SECOND HALF of Paul's prophecy in 2 Thess. 2:3 -- "and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, SHEWING HIMSELF THAT HE IS GOD." The total, .final, and universal Luciferian kingdom will be established, continue a short space, and go into perdition at the Second Advent of Christ (2 Thess. 2:8). An illustration of this from history is seen in the fact that the harlot city of Jerusalem, whose holy temple had been made a place of merchandise and a den of thieves (Matt. 21:13; John 2: 15), was carried for approximately 100 years by Rome, but at last was hated and destroyed by the very kings with whom she had maintained her heathenish traffice, namely, Titus in 70 A.D. As the WOMAN phase (religious) of Mystery Babylon gives way to the C1TY phase (political), so the same is revealed in connection with the true Church of Jesus Christ. John is shown the Bride, the Lamb's wife, and turning to see sees that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven .from God (Rev. 21: 9, 10). The mystery character of Babylon concealed behind that of a WOMAN will ultimately be revealed as a CITY, -- the Luciferian kingdom of Anti-Christ, which has as its one great purpose now in progress the re­construction of the world and the universal worship of Satan. The entire human race will at last worship Satan (Psa. 2:l-3f Rev. 13:2-4), except those whose names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life (Rev. 13:8).
     The historical development of the Beast is seen in its SEVEN HEADS. (Rev. 17:9-11). The one great world power existing at the time of the apostle John's writing was Rome, the sixth of the seven heads. Five had fallen. Counting back these would be Greece, Media-Persia, Babylon, Egypt, and Babel. The seventh in John's day had not yet come and when it did would continue but a short space. This is the Communist hammer and sickle government which has as its aim the domination of the world. Khrushchev is reported to have said, "Life is short, and I want to see in my lifetime the red flag fly over the entire world ..." Or again by Khrushchev, "Those who expect us to abandon communism will have to wait until a shrimp learns to whistle"; and, "whatever you Western diplomats like it or not, history is on our side. We will bury you." Lenin said, "We have to use any ruse, dodges, tricks, cunning, unlawful methods, concealment and veiling of the truth." Thus it works lawlessness and confusion to accomplish its end. Rev. 13:3 tells that one of the seven heads of the Beast was wounded to death, but was healed and all the world wondered after the Beast. This was the first head of the Beast in its historical dev­elopment, namely, Babel (Gen. 10:8-10; 11:1-9). Mankind in disobedience to the Divine command to scatter abroad (Gen. 11:4) tad gathered together to one place and the whole earth was of one language and of one speech (Gen. 11 :·1). The Lord wounded this first head by confusing their language (Gen. 11:7-9), because He would have the gospel preached among all nations unto the calling out of His elect people before the wound would be healed. In the eighth and last form of the Beast in historic develop­ment the wound will be healed and all the earth dwellers will be gathered together in a total, universal, "all out" Luciferian kingdom of darkness. There will be a final ONE WORLD government of Satanic tyranny. This last and final phase of the beast is said to be the eighth and is of the seven (that is, will embody all the hostile, persecuting powers of the seven preceding world power kingdoms), and is seen in its final form under TEN HORNS or kingdoms which shall give their power unto the Beast, or Anti-Christ (Rev. 17: 12-14). Destroying the WOMAN phase (religious) of Mystery Babylon, this last ONE WORLD Lucif'erian kingdom will reign under the CITY phase (political) claiming Godhood and worship (Rev. 13: 4,8; 2 Thess. 2:4), and will be destroyed by Christ at His Second Advent (2 Thess. 1:5-10; Rev. lC:20-24). This reveals a period of great suffering to the people of God (Rev. 17:16), but the saints are assured of final victory (Rev. 17:8, 11). All will be the fulfillment of the will of God (Rev. 17:16). Meanwhile, as this comes to pass God commands a spiritual separation from Babylon (Rev. 13:4), but at the last will effect a literal, bodily, physical separation by the taking out of this world his people, as illustrated in Lot's deliverance before the Lord rained fire and brimstone upon Sodom
and Gomorrah.
     In conclusion, Esias crieth concerning Israel, "Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, A REMNANT SHALL BE SAVED" (Rom. 9:27). If in the future the mercy of God should embrace a great host of this people blinded by the god of this world, and graft them in again to the good olive tree, the true people of God will rejoice in great praise and much thanksgiving. Meanwhile it is our solemn res­ponsibility to pray for this people, and to preach the gospel to them that the election of grace among them may be called out by the foolishness of preaching to faith in Jesus of Nazareth, the Christ, the Saviour of the world, and the second Person of the glorious Trinity, co-equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit. On the other hand, the true people of God and all the elect angels and saints in heaven will give glory to God in the overthrow of MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT: "For he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand" (Rev. 19: 1-6). In this chapter we have declared what we believe the prophetic scriptures reveal concerning "the rest that are blinded" (Rom. 11:7) and their part in current and future history in fulfilling the counsels of God with regard to THE MYSTERY OF INIQUITY, or LAWLESSNESS (2 Thess. 2:7-12).

Monday, April 23, 2018

The Abrahamic Covenant, by Dr. George B. Fletcher, Ch. 15, Part 2

Chapter XV
Part 2
World Revolution
     The second chapter of 2 Thessalonians is an amazing chapter of appalling horror and unspeakable glory. 0£ horror, because it speaks of the coming of a Man of Sin before Christ's Second Advent (vs. 3); of glory, because it speaks of the Second Coming of Christ, who shall destroy the Wicked One with the brightness of His coming (vs. 8. Of horror, because it speaks of the reprobate, from among both Jews and Gentiles, to whom shall be sent a strong delusion, and they be given up to all deceivableness of unrighteousness to believe a (the) lie (vss. 9-12); of glory, because it speaks of the elect, from among both Jews and Gentiles, for whom the apostle give􀂀 thanks and for whose comfort and consolation he prays (vss. 13-17). This chapter furnishes one of the supposed proof texts for the pre-tribulation rapture theory, namely, verses 6 and 7. The Scofield Reference Bible in a footnote on this chapter under the heading "The Order of Events" says:
     "... (3) The removal of that which restrains the mystery of
     lawlessness (vss. 6,7). The restrainer is a person -- 'he', and
     since a 'mystery.' always implies a supernatural element
     (Matt. 13;11, note), this Person can be no other than the Holy
     Spirit in the Church, to be 'taken out of the way' (vs. 7;
     l Thess. 4:14-17)."
     This interpretation we believe to be erroneous. C.F. Hogg and W. E. Vine (ardent premillennialists) in their Exegetical and Expository Notes On First and Second Thess­alonians say concerning this theory, that, --
     "It is without support in other parts of the New Testament ...
     The suggestion seems to be of quite modern origin, there is
     apparently, no trace of it in early writings on the subject ...
     The word until he be taken' in 2 Thess. 2:7 translating the
     Greek word 'GINOMAI' literally means, 'until he, or it
     become'; the tense is momentary. The word 'out of the way'
     translating the Greek "EK MESOU', literally means 'out of
     the midst.' "
They offer a paraphrase:
     "Only (there is) a restrainer now (who will restrain) until out
     of the midst (of the human race) there come to be, and then
     (come} to be revealed, the Lawless One. Or thus: -- "Only
     (there is) a restrainer now who will restrain until it, i.e.,
     lawlessness, show itself (as at 1 Thess. 1:5) out of the midst,
     (no longer an influence working in secret but a character­istic
     of the age), and then shall be revealed the Lawless One. "
     Hogg and Vine make this further enlightening comment that the restraining power is Gentile Dominion, which con­tinues until the "times of the Gentiles be fulfilled" (Luke 21:24), existing authorities being ordained to act in restraint of lawlessness {Rom. 13:1-7; 1 Pet. 2:13-17).
     ''When the appointed days of Gentile Dominion have run
     their course (Luke 21:24) this restraint will cease, and the
     individual, probably a Jew, see Daniel 11:37, sufficiently
     gifted to recognize the opportunity and to seize it, will
     assert a personal ascendancy over the law, and finally
     'raising the standard of ATHEISTIC PANTEISM will
     proclaim him­self the INCARNATION OF THE ABSOLUTE,'
     and so become the object of their worship".
     This rapture of the Church before a seven year period of tribulation is not found in this scripture. This pass­age - 2 Thess. 2:6, 7 -- is teaching that before Christ returns there shall come first a great falling away (vs.3) to be followed by a universal breakup of constituted law and order among the nations, and upon the resulting ruin, chaos, and confusion there will develop something out of the midst which will be "after the working of Satan," with all deceivableness of unrighteousness (vss. 6-10). That which develops "out of the midst" (not something taken away) will be some kind of "one world government" which the Communist One World conspirators hope will be realized through the United Nations Organization or some similar organization. This one world government will be of such a Satanic, supernatural nature all earth dwellers shall be deceived and wonder after it, except the elect whose names are written in the book of life (Rev. 13:3, 8).
     2 Thessalonians 2:11, 12 goes on to reveal that, be­cause men receive not the truth in the love of it, God shall send them strong delusion (a working of error), that they should believe a (lit., "the") lie, (with specific reference to the lie of 2 Thess. 2:4, viz. that man is God; compare with Gen. 3:5; Rom. 1:25; John 8:44); that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness. We are witnessing in our day the fulfillment of this prophecy of universal lawlessness. We are witnessing the Communist plan for universally rubbing out all national, religious, cultural, and racial lines and submerging the world in a Lawless, formless, characterless chaos for easy domination. To say that there is still another, more grandiose plan beyond that for which the Communist-Socialist mach ine was set up -- the last and final world government that shall ascend out of the bottomless pit and go into perdition (Rev. 17: 8,11) -- is indeed to' challenge the credulity of most of us, especially of us Anglo-Saxons who are too busy with ou#; humdrum routines to pull the propaganda curtain aside and see the giant hiding there. That giant is political ZIONISM dedicated to the establishment of one. vast world power kingdom, with the Jews as the ruling race. Its pro­gram is set forth in detail in The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion, and in the Books of the Talmud.
     There is only one philosophy, or body of teaching in the whole world today that has come down in unbroken line from ancient Babylon, and that is the Jewish Babylonian Talmud. The Talmud is a many volume compilation of Jewish history and traditions and the· teachings of ancient Rabbis. One of its most important elements consists in interpre­tations of the Law of Moses by Rabbis over a period of centuries, in legal decision after legal decision. The Encyclopedia Britannica (p. 771, Vol. 21, 1949 edition) says: "The Talmud is still the authoritative and practical guide of the great mass of the Jews," still not all the Rabbis accept the Talmud, with its glorification of secrecy, and cunning, and its incitation of blood-letting and conquest. Jews claim their religion is based upon the Law of Moses, but Talmudic Professor Louis Finkelstein wrote in The Pharisees, published in Philadelphia, Pa., by the Jewish Publication Society of America, in 1946:
     became Medieval Rabbinism, and Medieval Rabbinism
     became Modern Rabbinism. But throughout these
     changes of name, inevitable adaptation of custom, and
     adjustment of Law, THE SPIRIT OF THE ANCIENT
     The book of Traditions, which is the Talmud, is the only book that Jesus our Lord did specifically condemn (Mark 7:13). The apostle Paul drew attention to the erroneous teachings of the Rabbis, and their rulers, because "they knew Him not nor yet THE VOICE OF THE PROPHETS, which are read every Sabbath day, they have fulfilled them in con­demning Him" (Acts. 13: 27).
     The authorship of the Protocols has been a debatable question, but are reported to have been adopted at an International Conference of Jewish Rabbis and Elders. They were published by Professor Sergyei Nilus of Russia in 1905 and translated into English and published by Victor Marsden, correspondent of The Morning Post (London). The copy of the original at the British Museum bears the stamp of August 10, 1906. The Jews claim that the pro­tocols are spurious and cite as evidence of that fact the judgment of the trial court at Berne, Switzerland, which was a court of their own selection and obviously biased. The trial court did sustain their contention, but the case was appealed, and reversed by the appellate court. The final judgment acquitted the defendants of the charge or libeling the Jews, by the publication and distribution of the Protocols, and inferentially established their authenticity. It is explicitly stated that the end in view is to subjugate all governments to their super­-government, and the Jewish super-government is to be an autocracy with a Jewish Sovereign at its head. The Elders of Zion speak of the present era which they claim to have established as a "transition period" which had to be brought about before the final world dictatorship can be proclaimed. All writings by communists, socialists, inter­nationalists, and one worlders agree that this is but a "transition period." During this period governments will be made to crumble and the people will become so distrustful of their own national governmental systems that they will cry out for a world government which will ensure peace and security, even at the cost of their liberties and free­doms. When that time comes, the United States is to be converted into a world government in fact, with dictatorial powers vested in an "Elite" and -- if the "Elders of Zion" have their way -- the "Elite" will govern through a man selected by them, and enthroned as a "King sitting on the Throne of David."
     Protocol XVII:4 - "The King of the Jews will be the real Pope
     of the Universe, the patriarch of the international Church."
     From Serge Nilus's "Introduction to the Protocols" we quote paragraph 7, which briefly summarizes one of the means by which this world domination is to be achieved

     "7. The destruction of the social and economic structure of
     Christian states will also be brought about by the destruction
     of industrial prosperity, through speculation and constant
     strikes, 'throwing masses of workmen out of employment,
     artificially raising wages, thus increasing the cost of the
     necessaries of life, and finally by bringing about a general
     economic crisis and the disorganization of financial systems.
     The financial strength of the various non-Jewish states will
     also be undermined by causing them to over-burden them-
     selves with foreign and national loans on an ever-increasing
     scale, which will ultimately lead to bankruptcy."
     We believe that "Protocols of the Elders of Zion" whatever particular children of Satan were inspired to write them -- are the precise , historically authen­ticated plan of the Anti-Christ to overcome the world, make all, "both small and-great, rich and poor, bond and free" worship the Beast Rev. 13:16). Thus will be ful­filled the prophecy of the Apostle Paul as given in 2 Thess. 2:3, 4, namely, that the "son of perdition who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped;" will as God sit in the temple of God, "showing himself that he is God." The statement of Henry Ford given in an interview published in the New York Times of February 17, 1921 is startlingly true today as is evident to anyone reading the Protocols and observing the present world situation.
     "The only statement I care to make about the Pro­tocols is
     that they fit in with what is going on. They are sixteen
     years old, and they have fitted the world situation up to this
     time. They fit it now."
     In further confirmation a book of 118 pages, entitled The Jewish Utopia by Michael Rigger outlines the authentic and complete plan of the Zionists for world domination. The Jewish Utopia is a compilation, the sum total of the prophecies, teachings, plans, and interpretations of the foremost Rabbis and Jewish tribal leaders of the past 2500 years -- since the time of the Oral Law and the beginning of the Babylonian Talmud, with its double standard for Jews and non-Jews, and its nationalistic, militant interpretation of the Torah (the first five books 0£ the Old Testament). The regard in which The Jewish Utopia is held by the Rabbinate may be surmised from the printed Texas University Library seal inside the front cover, which says the book was "Presented by the Kallah of Texas Rabbis, 193911 to The Abraham I Schechter Collection of Hebraica and Judaica" of the University Library.
     The Utopia cherished by the Talmudic Jews is an ultimate "new social order," which, it would seem, the Zionists hope to establish after they have used Socialism, Communism, Fabian Socialism, and possibly a third world war to gain their ends. Jewish encyclopedias and other authoritative writings likewise present Socialism in a friendly light, or make outright boasts to reconstruct the world (compare Psa. 2:1-3). Sizeable Socialist organizations and movements today are of Jewish origin, and/or Jewish management. On the first day of May in 1776 in Munich, Germany, an organization called the Illuminati was launched by a group of atheists and free thinkers under the leadership of the Jew, Adam Weishaupt. Weishaupt was a cunning human devil whose dream in life was to fulfill the program laid down in Babylonia of old, of placing the whole world under one government. To accomplish this, Weishaupt set forth the following pro­grams: Abolition of all governments, abolition of in­heritance, abolition of private property, abolition of patriotism, abolition of family, and abolition of religion. These six plans by which he had proposed to destroy all orderly society have remained a part of the Communist program until this day. Weishaupt's program soon found an important place in the thinking of a young Jewish boy by the name of Karl Marx. Together with a friend of his, Fredrik Engels, they worked out the theory and tactics of revolutionary proletariann socialism, otherwise known as Communism. Communism is a modern version of the Jewish world state which was dreamed of by their fathers in Baby­lon five centuries before the birth of Christ. Evidently Socialism like its twin Communism, is largely to be a temporary vehicle, for the destruction of race, nations, and conquest of private property. Norman Thomas, six times a candidate for President of the United States on the Socialist party ticket said, "The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism, but under the name of Liberalism, they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program, until one day America will be a Socialist nation." Socialism is a process through which a capitalistic, free­-enterprise system can be used to siphon off its own economy and liberties and be brought over to a U.S.S.A.- a United States of Soviet America. BASICALLY, AND BY PRINCIPLE, Socialism and Communism ARE EXACTLY THE SAME. They are ideological brothers. They both believe in State ownership of the means of production and distribution. One is simply the soft sell, and the other the hard sell - one by the ballot, the other by bullets - one by evolution and the other by revolution. Socialism is like a man with cancer. He goes on fairly comfortable for years and suddenly wakes up with a sore side. He goes to the doctor and is sent to the hospital and an exploratory operation is performed. It is .found that he is literally alive with cancer. They sew him up, and send him home, and within a few months he dies. Socialism, as is being practiced in America, has already silently crept into the very vitals of the body politic, and only God knows whether we, through our free-enterprise system, still have the strength to throw off the cancer of Socialistic Communism and live. According to The Jewish Utopia its leaders will scorn the doctrine of equality which they now so diligently spread among us after the Jewish-Socialist­Comrnunist machine seizes the power. Christianity will be suppressed, forgotten or so infiltrated and changed as to remain only a name, its adherents actually worshipping the Torah and Babylonian Talmud.
     "Israel will be a living testimony to the absolute unity of
     God. Consequently, IN THE IDEAL ERA, there will be
     no people who will believe in the division of the Godhead
     into two or more parts, or persons. Only those peoples who
     believe in one God will survive in the ideal world." (The
     Jewish Utopia).
     This is a repudiation of the doctrine of the Trinity traditionally held by Christians and substitutes the Unitarian concept in its place. There will be no worship of Christ as the Son of God. This world-wide apostasy has gone so far that the National Council of Churches in America, claiming to represent about three-fourths of all Protestants in America, has reached an agreement with the American Jewish Committee whereby that Jewish nationalist power machine supplies a s1;􀁟am of "educational" films and literature to these Christian denominations, works with the National Council staff' in preparing Sunday School and Church literature, and has the privilege .of censoring any other NCC "Christian" literature (American Jewish Committee Re_p9rt, 1953). In the American Jewish Committee's pub­lication called the Committee Reporter in the summer of 1956·there was outlined the methods it had developed :for destroying Christmas observances in American schools.
Thus, the present Zionist and Communist-Socialist programs preaching brotherhood, Socialism, UNESCO, the Genocide Pact, the so-called covenant of Human Rights, the glorification of the United Nations, identify them­selves as part of the program of Jewish nationalism using Socialism and Communism to move us toward the goal of a one world government. In confirmation of the above view­point concerning "the rest were blinded" (Rom. 11:7), the following interesting excerpt is taken from a letter purported to have been written to Karl Marx by his fellow Jew, Baruch Levy, as quoted in La Revue de Paris, June 1, 1928, p. 574:
     "The Jewish people as a whole will be its own Messiah. It will
     attain world dominion by the dissolution of other races, by the
     abolition of frontiers, by the annihilation of monarchy which
     has always been the support of individ­ualism, and by the
     establishment of a world re­public in which the Jews wi11 every-
     where exercise the privilege of citizenship. In this new world
     order the children of Israel, who are scattered over the world,
     will furnish all the leaders without encountering opposition; and
     this will more particularly be the case if they succeed in getting
     the working masses under their control. The governments of the
     different peoples forming the world republic will, through the
     victory of the Proletariat, fall without difficulty into the hands of
     the Jews. It will then be possible for the Jewish rulers to abolish
     private property, and everywhere to make use of the resources of
     the State. Thus will the promise of the Talmud be fulfilled, in
     which it is said, that when the Messianic time has come, the Jews
     will have the property or the whole world in their hands."
     Or again, another quote from Feodor Dostievsky, famous Russian author and philosopher, writing in 1880 -
     "It is the Jew alone with his bank, who is the master and who
     rules all Europe ... The Jew with his bank is the master of
     Education, of civiliza­tion, of Socialism above all, by means of
     which the Jew is going to tear up Christianity by the roots and
     destroy its civilization. And when nothing but anarchy remains,
     the Jew will put himself at the head of all. For while propagating
     Socialism among a11 the Nations, the Jews will remain united
     among themselves; and when the wealth of Europe is dissipated,
     the Jew's Bank will remain."
     We recapitulate what we have said in this chapter so far: (1) The apostle Paul divides the Jews into two classes: "The election of grace," and "the rest (that) were blinded" (Rom. 11:7). (2) Within the reprobate portion of the nation there is a hard, radical, revol­utionary core of conspirators who, together with other international Bankers, aim at a world-wide overthrow of civilization, and upon its ruin to build a super-Jewish world state. (3) The channel of this conspiracy may possibly be political Zionism in the light of the Pro­tocols, Rabbinical writings, the Talmud, The Jewish Utopia, and various reports of the American Jewish Committee. (4) The Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul has re­vealed that the Second Coming of Christ will be preached by a two-pronged series of events: (a) A great falling away; and (b) a breakup of constituted authority of law and order among the nations, -- a general universal reign of lawlessness in all areas of life, out of the midst of which will develop a world government of some kind, and if the leaders of Zion -- the rest that are blinded - have their way, it will be Jewish. (5) This conspiracy of world domination and enslavement of the peoples of earth with the annihilation of all religion, especially the Christian faith, will almost succeed in totally breaking the "power of the holy people" (Daniel 12:7) -­not Jews, but saints, true believers on the Lord Jesus Christ, whether Jew or Gentile. (6) The world, given up to a strong delusion, or working of error to believe THE LIE, will wonder after the beast (the symbol of a univer­sal, total anti-Christian world power embodied in a One World Government, whose head will be the Man of Sin), and worship him, except the election of grace whose names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life (compare Matt. 4:8-10; Rev. 13:8). (7) At the peak of almost total success in destroying all faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and liquidating all who profess it, the Lord Jesus Christ will be revealed from heaven, and consume the Wicked One with the spirit of His mouth and destroy the total kingdom of darkness with the brightness of His coming, and that forever. Seeing this people the Jews, together with the Gentiles, are blinded by the god of this world, namely Satan (2 Cor. 4:4), let all true Christians pray most earnestly for their salvation and faithfully in compassion and love preach the gospel to both Jew and Gentile that they might be saved (Rom. 10:1-3. 12, 13). Romans 10:21 declares -- "But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobed­ient and gainsaying people." Christ's arms of mercy are extended to them still, even as when here in the days of His flesh He said, "0 Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and YE WOULD NOT" (Matt. 23:37). "I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, HIM YE WILL RECEIVE" (John 5:43) .

The Abrahamic Covenant, by Dr. George B. Fletcher, Ch. 15, Part 1

Chapter XV
Part 1
Pharisaic Judaism
     In any discussion of the relation of the Jew to the gospel of Jesus Christ one must recognize the twofold division of this people as found in Romans 11:7; namely, those chosen unto salvation and those left in their sins to perish because of unbelief. Romans 11:7 -- "What then? Israel· hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded." These latter ones together with the Gentiles were gathered together against Christ, for to do whatsoever God's hand and His counsel determined before to be done (Acts 4:27, 28). The apostle Paul wrote of the Jews of his day, that they "both killed the Lord Jesus, and their own prophets, and have persecuted us; and they please not God, and are contrary to all men: forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they might be saved, to fill up their sins alway: for the wrath is come upon them ·to the uttermost" (1 Thess. 2:15,16). The apostle personally instructed the Thessal­onians that before Christ returned from glory there would be a "great falling away" and the "man of sin be revealed whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming"
(2 Thess. 2:3,4,8). Second Thessalonians chapter two foretells a Parousia (coming) of Christ, and a Parousia of the Antichrist, representing two broadly antithetic events, or series of events in the future of the kingdom of God. If the prediction of the Advent of Christ em­braces both earlier and later fulfillment," the same may be found true in the prediction of the Advent of Antichrist. It is undeniable that our Lord's teaching concerning His own Advent was truly -- though by no means finally, as we believe -- fulfilled in the destruction of the Jewish Commonwealth in 70 A.D. That this latter was itself a type and prediction of His final Coming at the end of the world's history is held by many of the ablest exegetes. Thus, there is in this remarkable prophecy of 2 Thessal­onians 2 a near view and a far view; something existing in Paul's day which typified something on a far greater scale in the last days. It will not be surprising then, if we find that in announcing the Parousia of the Man of Sin there is vision of a near future as well as one far more distant. Thus the primary interpretation of this chapter refers to a situation existing in the first century which foreshadowed a situation that would exist in the last century immediately preceding the return of our Lord from glory. This view of the chapter (2 Thess. 2) is set forth by William Arnold Stevens in The American Commentary.
     "The primal type of the Man of Sin is to be found in the
     Judaism which was then opposing the gospel. If the history
     of the Judaistic crusade against the apostolic church were
     known to us in its de­tails, instead of in its barest outlines,
     we should better understand, no doubt, the peculiar
     significance of this and other expressions in 2 Thess. 2:9,10,
     by which this crusade is charac­terized. In its secrecy, its vast
     'underground' power, it might well be called mysterious,
     perhaps also from the subtly-blended truth and falsehood,
     honest zeal and malignant, satanic hate, that rendered
     Pharisaism in its later developments one of the profoundest
     moral enigmas of history. It is to be observed that at this
     point, where Paul comes to speak more particularly of the
     existing agency of the Lawless One, and of its results, he
     uses the general term 'mystery', and below, in verse 11, a
     'working' (energy) of error. This suggests at once, and the
     impression becomes stronger on reflection, that he is not
     describing any historical personage, and also that his
     pro­phetic vision into the future outlines a vaster figure than
     any single Nimrod or Napoleon of sin."
     Dr. Stevens further writes: "Assuming that it is the Jewish enmity to the Gospel, to which the apostle has alluded as the mystery of lawlessness which is already active, it is not difficult to see the historical basis for this part of the description. See the account of Simon Magus in Acts 8:9,10, 'who used sorcery and amazed the people of Samaria, giving out that he himself was some great one'; also Acts 13:6-12, concerning Bar-jesus the 'sorcerer and false prophet', 'full of all guile and all villany' (A.S.V.) As Israel turned away from God and His law, it became the dupe of false prophets and pretended miracle workers. One of the qualifications to a seat in the Sanhedrin, it is stated on the authority of Jewish writers, was to be skilled in magic. A considerable body of modern scholars, among them exegetes with the vast learning of John Lightfoot, and with the sympathetic penetration of Godet, while differing widely on minor points, and in their application of the details of the passage, have, nevertheless, been at one in that general conclusion that the proper counterpart of the Man of Sin is rather to be sought within the sphere of Jewish his­tory."
     Lightfoot (Harmony of the New Testament, 1654) says:
     "The s:everal characters that the apostle gives of the Man
     of Sin agree most thoroughly to that gener­ation and nation."
     Whitby supports this view, with abundant citation from
     historical sources, in his Paraphrase and Commentary upon
     all the Epistles of the New Testa­ment, London, 1700. "No
     nation under heaven more deserved to be styled the Man of
     Sin than did the Jewish nation, after the spirit of slumber and
     blindness was come upon them."
     "To be more definite," Stevens in his commentary says, "the principle denounced by the apostle is that of Phar­isaic Judaism; its historic embodiment we are to find in the Jewish Hierarchy and religious leaders of the century following the crucifixion. The Judaism that rejected Christ; that persecuted the early church; that hounded the apostle Paul to the death; that endeavoured to prevent the salvation of the Gentiles, neither itself entering into the kingdom nor suffering others to enter; that crept into the apostolic church to undermine and destroy it; that called forth Paul's righteous indignation, when he pointed out the 'wrath to the uttermost' impending over its guilty head; and that called forth the still more awful invective of our Lord Jesus near the close of his ministry, -- this was the one conspicuous and deadly enemy 0£ the church, at the time when the· Epistle was written, ·and for many years to come. No other historic embodiment of sin, I am con­vinced, so fully and accurately answers to the terms of the prophetic description." In further confirmation of this view of the apostle Paul's prophecy of 2 Thessalonians 2 I quote excerpts £rom Dr. Dods and Godet respectively.
     Dr. Dods (in Popular Commentary on the New Testament edited
     by Dr. Schaff says: "It seems 1dle to speculate in what precise
     form the Man or Sin will appear. It is possible that, as in Paul's
     day, the Jews were the most bitter antagonists of the gospel, so it
     is re­served for them to exhibit wickedness and opposition to the
     truth in the most aggravated form possible to man."
     More confidently Godet wrote: "Whence is such a being most
     likely to come? Evidently from the midst of the same people
     among whom the Messiah himself appeared. It therefore seems
     to me probable that the false Messiah will be an outcome of
     degen­erate Judaism, and that the Jewish nation, putting itself at
     the head of the great falling away, or apostasy, of Christian
     humanity toward the close of its existence, will then give birth to
     its false Messiah, the very ideal of man's natural heart, which has
     rejected the true Christ. With a daring impiety, such as can only
     belong to him who has turned his back on a holy destination, a
     Jew wonderfully gifted, will, by raising the standard of atheistic
     pantheism proclaim himself the Incarnation of the Absolute, and
     draw after him the great mass of mankind by prom­ising a golden
     Godet is not without scripture for his conviction, for our Lord taught in John 5:43 -- "1 am come in my father's name, and ye receive me not; if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive." Christ was speaking to Jews when He spoke the solemn words of John 5:16-47. We quote an amazing excerpt from the pen of Sir Winston Churchill in the Illustrated Sunday Herald of February 3, 1920:
     "It would almost seem as if the gospel of Christ and the gospel
     of antichrist were destined to originate among the same people;
     and that this mystic and mysterious race had been chosen for
     the supreme manifestations, both of the divine and the diabolical
     ... From the days of Spartacus-Weishaupt to those of Karl Marx,
     and down to Trotsky (Russia), Bela Kun (Hungary), Rosa
     Luxembourg (Germany) and Emma Goldman (U.S.) , the world-
     wide conspiracy for the overthrow of civilization and for the
     recon­struction of society on the basis of arrested develop­ment,
     of envious malevolence and impossible equality, has been
     steadily growing. It has been the main­spring of every subversive
     movement during the 19th century; and now, at last, this band of
     extra­ordinary personalities from the underworld of Europe and
     America have gripped the Russian people by the hair of their
     heads... There is no need to exaggerate the part played in the
     creation of Bolshevism by these international and, for the most
     part, atheistic Jews."
     Talmudic Professor Louis Finkelstein ( the same who aught "Jewish Law' to Earl Warren, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, U.S.A.) wrote in 1he Pharisees, published in Philadelphia, Pa., by the Jewish Publication Society of America, in 1946:
     "Pharisaism Became Talmudism, Talmudism became Medieval
     Rabbinism, and Medieval Rabbinism became Modern Rabbinism.
     But throughout these changes of name, inevitable adaption of
     custom, and adjustment of Law, the spirit of the ancient Pharisee
     survives unaltered."
     Another Jewish authority declaring that ancient Pharisaism survives unaltered today is the Universal Jewish Encyclopedia under the article Pharisees, 1943:
     "The Jewish religion as it is today traces its descent, without a
     break, through all the centuries, from the Pharisees ... The
     Talmud is the largest and most important single member or
     (their) literature ... and the study of it is essential for any real
     under­standing of Pharisaism.''
     Our Lord Jesus Christ warned the people, "Beware ye of the leaven o:f the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy" (Luke 12:1). Against no other group did He ever utter such scathing denunciations, telling the Pharisees that they are worshippers of the Devil, and are liars and murderers.
     "Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father
     ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode
     not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he
     speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the
     father of it" ( John 8: 44) .
     The most devasting damnation of the Pharisees ever recorded is found in Matthew 23, where Christ reached a thunderous climax in verse 33: "Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?" Yet despite their enmity and hatred, Christ cried: "0 Jerusalem , Jerusalem, thou that stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!" (Matt. 23:37). Upon His resurrection from the dead , Christ commanded that "repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem" (Luke 24:47), What marvelous grace! Like the apostle Paul our heart's desire for Israel must be that they might be saved, and come to the knowledge of the truth. Therefore, let us evangelize the Jews, preach the gospel unto them, and earnestly pray for their salva­tion, for without Christ they are perishing even as others, and as Dr. Dods suggests it may be reserved for them as blinded by the god of this world (2Cor. 4:4) to exhibit wickedness and opposition to the truth in the most aggravated form possible to man.

The Abrahamic Covenant, by Dr. George B. Fletcher, Ch. 14

Chapter XIV
     Anglo-Israelism is an attempt to trace the origin of the Anglo-Saxon people back to the so-called "Lost Ten Tribes" of Israel. It is a theory o:f racial super­iority and another one o:f the dangerous "divers and strange doctrines" of the last days. This is evident .from several considerations.
     1. Anglo-Israelism asserts that the members of the Ten Tribes were never called "Jews", and that "Jews" are not Israelites. The TWELVE tribes were present at the dedication of the temple in the time of Ezra and Nehemiah as the books o:f Ezra and Nehemiah make abund­antly clear (Ezra 6:15-17; 8:35; Neh. 11:20; 12:47; 13:3). The two houses of Israel, or some from ALL of the twelve tribes did return and rebuild the temple and Jerusalem as Jeremiah prophesied they would. Jeremiah 50:4 -- "In those days, and in that time, saith the Lord, the children of Israel shall come, THEY AND THE CHILDREN OF JUDAH TO­GETHER, going and weeping: they shall go and seek the Lord their God." This prophecy will have a still fuller accomplishment, when the Jews, being delivered by Christ, the Divine Cyrus, will turn to God with penitential sorrow, and be joined together in the true .faith, in the spiritual Zion of His Church. It is not claimed that EVERY ISRAELITE WITHOUT EXCEPTION returned .from captivity in Assyria and Babylon to his own land 0£ Palestine and Jerusalem in particular. The promise was, "though my people Israel be as the sand of the sea, yet a REMNANT of them shall return" (Isaiah 10:22). In the Septuagint, this reads: "A remnant ONLY of them shall return." Con­sequently, the two tribes of Judah were not like "Sodom and Gomorrah" (Isa. 1: 9) , for the Lord left them a "seed" to return to Palestine together with a remnant from the other ten tribes, and thus preserved the whole house of Israel in its twelve tribe relationship (Rom. 9:27-30). Ezekiel prophesied the UNION of the two houses of Israel at the close of the Babylonian captivity and that hence­forth there should be NO MORE TWO NATIONS any more at all, but one nation (Ezekiel 37:15-28). It is a historic fact that since the time of Ezekiel Israel has not been divided into "two kingdoms" thus proving the prophecy true. The Lord did "Make them ONE NATION in the land upon the mountains of Israel" for over 500 years, and "one king" was king to them all. They had no kings from their own tribes after they came .from Babylon; neither were there any more TWO lines o:f kings ruling over the two houses of Israel; but one king, -- the king ruling in Persia was "king to them all". The highest officers among the Israelites after they became ONE nation were called to a higher elevation, and merges itself in Christ and His Church. Thus after the captivity, to speak literally, Israel and Judah had no king; and one of the uses of that evanescence of the monarchy was, that it weaned the minds of the faithful from the literal sovereignty, and pre­pared them for the spiritual Monarchy of Christ. Christ is the greater David who has united Israel and Judah (that is, those that are of faith among them) under one King and one Shepherd, even Himself their Lord and their God (John 20:28). In the book of Romans the apostle Paul uses the terms "Jew" and "Israelite" interchangeably. In Acts 21:39 he calls himself a Jew; in 2 Cor. 11:22 he says he is an Israelite; and in Romans 11:1, he says he is an "Israelite" of the tribe of Benjamin. If Paul could be one of the ten tribes and ·still a Jew, then what becomes :of the theory of a sharp division between them? Paul referred to the Jewish people of his time as the "twelve tribes of Israel" (Acts 26:6,7), and James wrote "to the · twelve tribes which are scattered abroad" (James 1: 1).
     2. Anglo-Israelism claims that "the lost sheep of the house of Israel" were not in Palestine at the time our Lord was here on earth, but that many of them had already migrated from Assyria to the British Isles, while others were destined to reach there later on. The Bible however teaches that "the lost sheep of the house of Israel" were right there in Palestine where they could be reached by our Lord and the twelve apostles (Matthew 15:24; 10:5, 6). Moreover, Peter on the day of Pentecost said, "Ye men of Israel" (2:22) and "Ye men of Judaea" (2:14) and called them "children of the covenant" (Acts 3:12,25,26), even if they were in Palestine and not in the Isle of Britain!
     3. Anglo-Israelism claims that the Anglo-Saxon people, as a people, are the COVENANT PEOPLE. We are told that the Anglo-Saxons are the heirs, of the promise made to Abraham. Genesis 17:9-14 reveals CIRCUMCISION as the sign of the covenant that related to the fleshly descendants of Abraham, but Anglo-Saxons are neither Abraham's offspring according to the flesh, nor are they a circumcised people. This fact debars them from any national blessing as a nation in covenant relationship to God. For spiritual Israel (that is, Christians, whether believing· Jew or Gentile) circumcision is nothing (Rom. 2:28,29; Gal. 6:15). "Israel," says British Israel Truth, "has been re-covenanted by being baptized into the one Catholic and Apostolic Church"; and now "the Gospel of salvation must be preached by His constituted agents, the House of Israel." D. M. Panton writes on this point:
     "That a NATION can be baptized into the CHURCH, still
     remaining a natio􀀺: with a destiny of imperial rule over all
     other nations, while simul­taneously evangelizing them as
     God's sole embassage of the Gospel, is not only a conception
     profoundly un-Christian, but a direct negation of what the
     Holy Spirit says the Church is: 'Where there CANNOT be
     GREEK and JEW, circumcision and uncircumcision,
     barbarian, SCYTHIAN, bondman, freeman' (Col. 3:11)."
     4. Anglo-Israelism lays claim to a racial superiority. Nationalism -- all .favored-nation claims before Jehovah -- since Calvary is a complete subversion of the teaching of the New Testament. It re-erects the barriers of the flesh which the Cross has thrown down (Eph. 2:14; 2 Cor. 5:16); it makes national prosperity and worldly greatness, instead of righteousness and truth, the hall­marks of God's spiritual favor; it ignores and so im­plicitly denies, the individual regeneration and sanctity without which no man shall see the Lord (Heb. 12:14); and it concentrates the blessing of God on the Anglo-Saxon race in becoming the rulers of the world. No spiritual truth -is more radical, more elementary, than that "the flesh profiteth nothing" (John 6:63); and there­fore no error could be more radical, more fundamental, than to attribute to blood, not grace, to the flesh, not the Spirit, any standing whatsoever before God (John 1:12, 13; Rom. 9:6-8)."
     5. Anglo-Israelism asserts that "Ephraim" is being blessed while Judah is still cursed, Ephraim and Manna­sseh being Great Britain and America. But what saith the Scripture? -- "to the law and to the testimony; if they speak not according to this word it is because there is no light in them" (Isa. 8:20). The throne of Ephraim was occupied by 19 kings, each of whom worshipped the Egyptian golden calves which Jeroboam, the Ephraimite, set up at Bethel and Dan. Many of these kings added to Jeroboam's sin the worship of Baal and Ashtaroth. There were 19 kings but there was no royal house. These kings included murderers, and reprobates, and because of their idolatry, God pronounced against three of them (Jeroboam, Baasha, and Ahab) that the carcasses of their posterity should be eaten by dogs and birds. Seven were assassin­ated, and one committed suicide. The first one was struck by Jehovah and the last was taken into captivity by Assyria. In 2 Kings 17:18 we read that Jehovah was angry with (Ephraim) Israel and removed them out o:f his sight, and in Hosea 4:17, "Ephraim is joined to his idols; let him alone." Because of Ephraim's besetting sin of idolatry they were removed from the land 130 years before Judah, in whom some good thing was found -- who had some God-fearing, pious kings in their unbroken Davidic line. Anglo-Israelism asks us to believe that the more idolatrous of the two kingdoms, namely, Ephraim, is enjoying the favor of God, while Judah, from whom every prophet and psalmist came, was abandoned and under God's curse. Can any one really believe that God rewarded idolatrous Ephraim above Judah, whom Jehovah honored with the city, the throne, the temple, and the worship of Jehovah, and of whom Christ came {Rom. 9:4,5; Hebrews 7:14)?
     6. Anglo-Israelism is contrary to that basic prin­ciple of interpretation, namely, that the New Testament is the culmination, the climax of the revelation of the divine purpose, and that climax is reached in Jesus Christ our Lord (Heb. 1:1,2). Therefore the revelation of God in Christ is the ultimate word; and all revelations which preceded that full orbed disclosure of the divine purpose must be interpreted in the light that shines from the face of Jesus Christ. The mysteries of the Old Testa­ment are unveiled in the face of Christ, and in the light which shines from His face, we are to interpret the Old Testament. 2 Corinthians 3:14 -- "But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same veil untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which veil is done away in Christ." Dr. T. T. Shields states it thus in his sermon on Anglo-Israelism:
     "No interpretation of the Old Testament can be correct
     which is not confirmed and established either implicitly
     or explicitly by the Hew Testa­ment. That principle must
     be applied, not only to the theory of British Israelism: it
     must be applied, also to all millennial and other theories
     too. No interpretation of the Old Testament can be true
     that does not find its confirmation and establishment in
     the teaching of the New Testament."
     The New Testament says absolutely nothing about the "lost" Ten Tribes, or of Israel being the Anglo-Saxon race; hence, this doctrine is false and erroneous.
     7. Finally, Anglo-Israelism is a last day delusion to draw aside men from the vital matters concerning things eternal and spiritual. It distorts and confuses the whole prophetic Scriptures. It fosters national pride, and nationalizes God's blessings and reckons that temporal prosperity is the fulfillment of prophecy to Anglo-Saxons, the supposed Israel of God. It befogs the fact that Christian destiny whether of Jews or Gentiles is linked neither with Palestine, England, or the United States, but with "an inheritance which is incorruptible, and un­defiled, and that fadeth not away" (l Peter 1 :4). Dr. T. T. Shields writes in his inimitable style:
     "But what are we asked to believe? 'Having by Himself
     purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the
     Majesty on High' -- yet some would tell me that my
     glorious Lord is going to step down from that throne to
     a material throne in Jerusalem and reign over a temporal
     Jerusalem. Is it conceivable that He who weighed the
     mountains in scales and the hills in a balance, and can of
     the very stones raise up children unto Abraham, is
     interested in the preservation of a boulder on which Jacob
     is alleged to have slept for a pillow? I do not believe it.
     Such assumptions seem to me to be utterly childish."
     Appropriate are the words of The Encyclopedia Britannica which says of the Anglo-Israelite theory:
     "The contention that the British people, in the United
     Kingdom, its colonies, and the United States, are the
     racial descendants of the 'ten tribes' :forming the
     kingdom of. Israel, large numbers o-.f whom were
     deported by Sargon, king of Assyria on the fall of
     Samaria in 721 B.C. The theory (which is fully set
     forth in a book called Philo Israel) rests on premises
     which are deemed by scholars, both theological and
     anth­ropological, to be utterly unsound."

The Abrahamic Covenant, by Dr. George B. Fletcher, Ch. 13

Chapter XIII
     What kind of a future was the apostle Paul concerned about for the people he wept over and prayed for (Rom. 9:1-3; 10:1)? Dr. C. D. Cole in his Fifteenth Lecture on Romans in The Gospel Witness says,
     "I cannot find in Paul's writings, in Romans or elsewhere,
     anything to indicate that he had any desire for their return
     to Palestine, or any wish that they might have political
     supremacy. Paul is concerned about the spiritual welfare
     of his people. He wants them to have the blessings of the
     New Covenant. He is disturbed because they are separated
     from Christ. He wants them to have the righteousness of
     God which is by faith in Jesus Christ. Am I not on safe and
     Scriptural grounds when I affirm that the New Covenant
     does not guarantee anybody, Jew or Gentile, a foot of land
     in Palestine, or any­where else? Nor does it guarantee any
     blessing of a material kind. Christ died to save His people
     from their sins, and the only home guar­anteed His people
     is a heavenly home."
     Of Romans 11:26 we ask: (1) WHO are they that are here designated "al1 Israel"? ( 2) HOW are they to "be saved"? (3) WHEN are they to be saved? A novel interpretation of this passage that is both radical and re­volutionary declared: (1) The all Israel" of Romans 11 :26 is the ENTIRE JEWISH NATION OF A FUTURE ERA; (2) They are to "be saved" otherwise than by the preaching of the gospel of Christ, and to a salvation different in kind £rom gospel salvation; (3) They are to be saved in a SUBSEQUENT DISPENSATION, that is to say, AFTER this "day of salvation" shall have ended.
     FIRST, as to WHO are "all Israel". This special portion Romans 9 to 11 begins with the statement that, "they are NOT ALL ISRAEL, which are OF Israel" (9:6), which plainly declares that the term "all Israel" does NOT embrace all who are by nature Israelites. This scripture alone refutes the idea that "all Israel" means all who are of Jewish descent. William Hendriksen in his pamphlet entitled, And So All Israel Shall Be Saved says:­
     "The term refers to the full number of elect Jews whom it
     pleases God to bring into the kingdom throughout the ages
     until the very day when also the pleroma of the Gentiles
     shall have been brought in. 'All Israel' is the remnant
     according to the election of grace' (11:5). Throughout
     Romans 9 to 11 Paul is speaking about THE REMNANT.
     That thought occurs again and again. This remnant is
     defined as being the true Israel (9:6); 'the children of
     promise' (9:8); 'a seed' (9:29); 'his people whom he fore-
     knew' (11:2); 'the seven thousand men' in Elijah's time
     (11:4); 'the remnant according to the election of grace'
     (which remnant exists also at this present time) (11:5);
     'the election' (11;7); 'those Jews that continue not in their
     unbelief' (11:23); 'all Israel' (ll:26a). It is significant, more-
     over that Paul quotes several REMNANT-PASSI\GES
     from the Old Testament. See Romans 9:27; 9:29; 11:4.
     This interpretation does justice to the word 'all' in 'all Israel'.
     The apostle does not say that Israel shall be saved on a very
     large scale; but he says that 'all' Israel shall be saved. This
     'all' clearly indicates the total number of elect Jews, without
     a single exception: ALL the elect. In Elijah's day there was
     a remnant. In Paul's day there was a remnant. In the years to
     come there would be a remnant. These remnants of all the
     ages, taken together, constitute 'all Israel'. So also 'the full-
     ness of the Gentiles' indicates the total number of Gentiles
     that are saved."
     SECOND, as to HOW "all Israel" is to be saved; the word "so" (meaning IN THE MANNER DESCRIBED) directs us to the verses immediately preceding. The manner of salvation described in those verses is set forth under the figure 0£ grafting into the stem of a "good olive tree" (Rom. 11: 23-25). Will THEY be saved in some manner different from that described in this passage, and to a salvation of a different sort? Most certainly not. Let us hear the inspired apostle, -- "And they ALSO, IF THEY ABIDE NOT STILL IN UNBELIEF, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again" (Rom. 11 :23). "To graft them in" plainly means their incorporation into the same good olive tree", and the condition is that they CONNTINUE NOT IN THEIR PRESENT STATE OF UNBELIEF, but come by individual faith to Christ. Does not this passage then, with its lively figure of the olive tree, set forth clearly and impressively that there is but ONE SALVATION £or all men, but one WAY of salvation for all, and one DAY of salvation for all?
     The apostle Paul by his reference to the "good olive tree" does not mean the nation of Israel, the whole frame of whose constitution, order and ordinances of worship, as a nation, was settled and established by a peculiar national covenant. He is evidently speaking of that good olive tree into which the believing Gentiles were grafted among the natural branches, the believing Jews, and with them partaking of its root and fatness (Rom. 11:17). The believing Gentiles were not grafted into the nation of Israel, and so that cannot be meant by the good olive tree. The apostle, by this figure, means the original promise made to Abraham, that in his seed all rations of the earth should be blessed. This seed is Christ, who is the root from which all the true branches derive fatness. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were separated unto God for the sake of Christ, that seed that was to spring of them, and bless all nations. For His sake also their posterity, the whole house of Israel, were separated unto God from all other people, and were favored with many distinguished privileges. The Jews were naturally related to Christ according to the flesh, and so are termed the natural branches. But when Christ came unto HIS OWN, and the greater part of them received Him not, their natural re­lation to Him was of no more avail. As they had no spiritual connection with Christ, they were broken off. It was only to those of them that received Him, believing on His Name, that He gave power to become the true sons of God (John 1:11, 12). These were grafted into Christ by faith, and were branches in Him, the True Vine (John 15:1-6). And it was among these believing Jews that Gentile converts, who were o:f the wild olive, were grafted in, being made "fellow-heirs, and o:f the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ by the gospel" (Eph. 3:6), and thus partook with them of the root and fatness of the good olive tree. And so when the natural branches, which were broken off through unbelief, shall be grafted in again, IT WILL NOT BE INTO MOSES, BUT INTO CHRIST; not into the nation of Israel erected at Sinai, but into that which is built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone, namely, the Church· (Eph. 2:20). Dr. C. D. Cole writes:
     "The Jews that are saved will be saved under the New Covenant
     of grace and will be incorporated into the New Covenant people."
     THIRD, as to WHEN "al1 Israel shall be saved". Those who are grafted into the good olive tree are they, and only they, who believe the gospel of Christ; and from this it follows that when the era of the gospel is ended, there will be no olive tree salvation (and hence no salvation of any sort), for either Jew or Gentile. And other Scriptures make it plain beyond all question that those who "obey not the gospel of Christ" will be "punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord" (2 Thess. 1:7-9). If this be so, and the Scripture de­clares it is so, we ask again, who will be left to enter any supposed future millennium AFTER the Second Coming of Christ? Thus the Jews will continue to exist as a separate people down to the very end of time, or to the Second Coming of Christ. Some of them have been constituted a political commonwealth among the nations in the nation of Israeli in Palestine , but they are not and never will be in NATIONAL covenant relationships to God as Israel of old formerly was. The reason why this people has not been cut off entirely is because of the remnant according to the election of grace among them that must be called out to faith· in Christ right down to the very end. Similarly, it might be asked, why does not God bring in the final judgment upon the world of the ungodly among the Gentile nations of the world? And the answer is, because He. has an election of grace among the peoples of earth, and until the last one is called out, whether from among Jews. or Gentiles, the final judgment of the world in righteousness cannot and will not take place (2 Peter 3:9,15,16). How­ever, it is especially to be noted that verse 26 does not say, "AND THEN" --that: is, AFTER the fullness of the Gentiles be come in "all Israel shall be saved", but "AND SO all Israel shall be saved." The little word "so" determines the meaning of the verse, meaning "in this way or manner"; that is, by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. We conclude by giving two excerpts from the writings of Dr. Bavinck, and Dr. L. Berkhof respectively. Dr. Bavinck, author of Gereformeerde Dogmatiek writes:
     "Accordingly, the term- ALL ISRAEL does not indicate
     the people of Israel which will be converted on a large
     scale in the end-time; neither does it refer to the church
     out of Jews and Gentiles; but it is the 'pleroma' (fullness)
     which, in .the course of centuries, is gathered out of Israel.
     It is Paul 's prediction that as a people Israel will continue
     to exist alongside of the Gentiles; that it will not be wiped
     out or disappear from the earth; and that it will remain to
     the end of the ages, will contribute its 'pleroma' to the
     kingdom of God just as will the Gentiles, and will retain its
     peculiar task and position witn respect to that kingdom."
     Dr. L. Berkhof.; author of Systematic Theology says:
     "ALL ISRAEL is to be understood as a designation not of the
     whole nation, but of the whole number of the elect out of the
     ancient covenant people."

Friday, April 20, 2018

The Abrahamic Covenant, by Dr. George B. Fletcher, Ch. 12

Chapter XII
     We must distinguish Abraham's natural offspring into the CHILDREN OF THE FLESH and the CHILDREN OF THE PROMISE (Rom. 9:8), and also the promises themselves into TEMPORAL and SPIRITUAL.
     Abraham had a numerous natural posterity by Hagar and Keturah (Gen. 25) and in the line of Isaac by his grandson Esau (Gen. 36), so that he literally became the father of many nations. But though these were the natural offspring of Abraham, and circumcised, the promises had no PRIMARY respect to them. They were not heirs with him, nor made any part of the holy covenant nation, even in a typical sense. This primary respect was restricted to his natural posterity in the line of Jacob, the children of Israel, and that, not according to the NATURAL COURSE OF THINGS, or any natural right or excellency in them that might entitle them to a preference (Deut. 9:4,5,6,24). It was, rather, according to the sovereign purpose of God, who had elected them to be a peculiar people to Himself (Rom. 9:11-14). However, even among this selected part of Abraham's natural posterity, there was a distinction still more wide and of greater importance than the former, viz. the distinction between the mere children of the flesh, who were of the circumcision only, or Jews out­wardly, and those of them who were not of the circumcision only, but also walked in the steps of that faith of their father Abraham (Rom. 2:28, 29; 4:12). The former made up the greater part of the congregation of Israel, and, as mere subjects of the old Sinai Covenant, are classed with the children of Hagar the bond-woman (Gal. 4:24,25). The latter were always but a small remnant in comparison with ·the number of the children of Israel; and though by an election of grace, they were heirs of the spiritual promise to Abraham. Moreover,. they were kept .in a state of minority, under the discipline and tutorage of the Mosaic law, until Christ came and bestowed upon them the full liberty and privileges of sons (Gal. 3:24, 25; 4:1-8).
     Furthermore, in considering the PRIMARY RESPECT which the. promises made to Abraham had to his natural posterity, we must distinguish these promises into TEMPORAL and SPIRITUAL.
     With respect to the TEMPORAL PROMISES, these had not only a PRIMARY but a PECULIAR respect to Abraham's natural offspring, in the line of Jacob, such as their being multiplied, redeemed from Egypt, put in possession of the land of Canaan, and their enjoyment of the good things of that land. In all these blessings their infant seed, according to the NATURAL COURSE OF THINGS,; must have shared with them; even as, on the other hand, they must have suffered with them in their calamities; for temporal promises or threatenings are frequently 0£ such a nature as to affect succeeding generations.
As to the SPIRITUAL PROMISES, which are included in the blessing of Abraham, such as justification, the pro­mise of the Spirit, the true adoption of sons, etc. ­these had also a PRIMARY, though not a PECULIAR or EX­CLUSIVE, respect to Abraham's natural offspring. That they had not an EXCLUSIVE respect to them is clear from the very words of the covenant with Abraham on which the apostle's argument is founded; namely, "In thee," or "in thy Seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." This included Gentiles as well as Jews (Gal. 3:8,14,16,17, 28), and with this the facts recorded in the accomplish­ment of that promise perfectly agree. Nevertheless, the spiritual promises had a PRIMARY respect to the natural offspring of Abraham. When the promised Seed came to bless all nations, He came first unto His own nation, being sent unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel, and was a minister of the circum­cision to confirm the promises made unto the fathers
(Rom. 15:8,9). The gospel was first preached to the Jews both by Christ Himself and His apostles (Matt. 10:5,6; Luke 24:47; Acts 11:19). We find Peter urging and en­couraging them to repent and be converted, by the prim­ary concern they had in the covenant which God made with their fathers respecting Christ, whom He had now first raised up to them, and sent to bless them (Acts 3:25,26). The first church of the saints was gathered from among them, being begotten with the word of truth, that they might be a kind of first fruits of His creatures (Jas. 1:18). And from that church sounded out the word of God unto the nations, that the Gentiles might be made par­takers of their spiritual things (Rom. 15:27).
     Thus the spiritual promises had a PRIMARY respect to the natural offspring of Abraham. But as the bulk of that nation rejected Christ when He came, and persecuted His followers, neither their being the circumcised seed of Abraham, nor their national relation to God by the Sinai Covenant, could entitle them to the privileges of free sons and heirs; and so they were, like the bond-woman and her son, cast out of God's house (Gal. 4:22-31; John 8:31-37).
     Another aspect of this truth is Romans 11:28 --­ "As touching the election they are beloved for the fathers' sake. 11 The apostle is here expressly speaking of THE ELECTION. There was a two-fold election of Abra­ham's natural seed. First, there was a NATIONAL ELECTION of them, whereby they were chosen to be a peculiar people unto God in dis­tinction from all other nations (Deut. 4:27; 7:6-8; 10:14, 15). The reasons assigned for this are, because He loved their fathers and them, and because He would keep the oath which He had sworn unto their fathers.
     Second, there is an ELECTION OF GRACE, as opposed to works, and distinguished from their national election, it being only a REMNANT of that nation who belonged to this election in the time o:f the apostles (Rom. 11 :5,6). Con­sequently though Israel, as a nation, obtained not that which he sought for, yet the election among them obtained it, and the rest, who were not of that election, were blinded (Rom. 11:7-11). Now the election mentioned in Rom. 11:28, as it respects those of them who are yet to be grafted in, must be of the same kind with that ELECTION OF GRACE, according to which a remnant of that people were saved in the apostolic age, and who were a kind of first-fruits or sample of all the true Israel among them. Therefore, whatever general profession of Christianity, as some conceive, that nation may yet assume, it will always hold true, that none of them but the election will obtain. And it will not be upon the basis of their ancient national election, and fleshly relation to the patriarchs, but purely upon the ground of the same sovereign free mercy that was shown to the Gentiles. And so the apostle states it: "For as ye (Gentiles) in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained MERCY through their unbelief; even so have these (Jews) also now not believed, that through YOUR MERCY they also may OBTAIN MERCY" (Rom. 11: 30,31). "For God hath concluded them all in unbelief" -­- shut up all, both Jews and Gentiles in their turns --
"that he might have mercy upon all" (Rom. 11:32). That is, that for both of them, being upon a level and equally in a state of guilt and condemnation, their salvation might appear to be of the same free sovereign mercy, and not on account of anything which distinguished the Jew from the Gentile.
     But how then are the election among the Jews said to be beloved for the fathers' sake? Does not this imply that the distinguishing love of God towards the elect among the Jews; took its rise from, or was influenced by, the personal faith or holiness of Abraham, Isaac, and their godly fathers? If we understand the words in this sense, it will not be easy to reconcile them to the Scripture doctrine of divine grace, which is always opposed to any worthiness in the creature, is represented as sovereign and free to the undeserving, and as leading the objects of it not to value themselves on any natural advantages, or even in having Abraham to their father, but to glory only in the Lord. If they were thus beloved merely for the sake of the godliness of their fathers, Ishmael and Esau with their posterities, and, at any rate, the whole nation of Israel, must have had an equal claim to this peculiarity of divine regard, for they all sprang from the same godly fathers. Abraham himself sprung from idolatrous ancestors, and was called out from the idolatry of his father's house (Joshua 24:6,14). He had nothing
of himself but what he received of sovereign grace (1 Car. 4:7). He was justified not by works, but in believing on Him that justifieth the ungodly (Rom. 4:1-6). All the spiritual blessings promised to him, either personally or to his spiritual seed, were of pure grace through faith. Through his faith wrought with his works, which were approved of God, yet it was not £or the sake of these works that any of his posterity were beloved and elected to salvation; for that is an election of grace, not of works (Rom. 11:5,6).
     Therefore, when the apostle says , "As concerning the election, they are beloved for the father's sake," he means for the sake of that which God promised to their fathers. The promise to Abraham was, "In thee," or, "In thy seed shall all the nations of' the earth be blessed" (Gen. 12:3; 22:18}. This, the apostle informs us, was the covenant which was confirmed before of' God in Christ, and in which the gospel was before preached to Abraham; and he explains this Seed in whom the nations were to be blessed, and to whom the promises were made, to be Christ {Gal. 3:8,16,17). This promise was renewed to Isaac (Gen. 26:4) and to Jacob (Gen. 28:14). Now as Christ is the SEED that was promised to the fathers, and as it is IN HIM that men are blessed; so it must be THROUGH, or FOR THE SAKE of this Seed that the fathers themselves, as well as their elect offspring, are beloved. The Lord, indeed, says to Abraham, "In THEE shall all nations be blessed" (Gal. 3:8). And so the apostle terms it "the BLESSING OF ABRAHAM" (Gal. 3: 14) . However, this manner of speaking is not to be understood as if Abraham himself was to be the original source, procurer or dispenser of that blessing, or that it was to be bestowed for his sake; but it was a free promise made to him as father of the faithful, and confirmed to him IN CHRIST, who was to come of his seed according to the flesh, and IN WHOM, not in Abraham personally considered, all nations were to be blessed. So that whatever temporal blessings and outward privileges were promised to, or conferred on the nation of Israel for the fathers' sake; yet the spiritual bless­ings of redemption, which were peculiar to the elect among them, are promised and bestowed only for Christ's sake.