Expositional commentary on Scripture using an inductive exegetical methodology intent upon confronting the lives of Christians with the dogmatic Truths of God's inspired Words opposing Calvinism and Arminianism, Biblical commentary, doctrine of grace enablement, understanding holiness and wisdom and selfishness, in-depth Bible studies, adult Bible Study books and Sunday School materials Dr. Lance T. Ketchum Line Upon Line: II. The Church and Biblical Zionism

Monday, March 5, 2018

II. The Church and Biblical Zionism

Chapter Seven
II. The Church and Biblical Zionism

The context of God’s mercy in Romans chapter nine is determined by the context of God’s mercy in Hosea 2:23. God’s mercy refers to God’s special grace in extending mercy to national Israel in her restoration at the second coming of Christ.  Therefore, contextually, this special grace is to national Israel according to God’s determinant will.  This special grace does not refer to the salvation of individuals.  The point is that national Israel did not deserve to be restored. 

6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all {spiritual} Israel, which are of {national} Israel: 7 Neither, because they are the {physical} seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy {spiritual} seed be called. 8 That is, They which are the children of the flesh {physical seed}, these are not the children {spiritual seed} of God: but the children of the promise {faith} are counted for the {spiritual} seed” (Romans 9:6-8).

14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid. 15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. 16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy. 17 For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth. 18 Therefore hath he mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth” (Romans 9:14-18).

          Therefore, what Paul is telling us in Romans chapter nine is that we have two elect Israel’s.  Election is conditional (CHART) in both two elect groups. 

1. We have elect national Israel with earthly and temporal promises conditioned upon being a physical (genetic) descendant of Abraham.  Only Jews can be part of this elect group.
2. We have spiritual elect Israel with heavenly and eternal promises conditioned upon being “born again” through faith in the Promised Seed (Christ).  “Whosoever {of any individual from any nation or ethnic group} shall call upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13).

          In Romans 9:25, Paul quotes from Hosea.  “Osee” in our KJV is Hosea.  God told Hosea to take a whore for his wife.  Hosea obeys and marries a whore named “Gomer the daughter of Diblaim” (Hosea 1:3).  God uses Gomer to typify national Israel since most Jews were involved with the licentious, pornographic, sexual cultus of Baalism.  It is clear in the prophecy from Hosea 2:1-23 that God is NOT casting national Israel away.  It is clear from the prophecy from Hosea 2:1-23 that God is withdrawing His blessings from national Israel and that, if national Israel did not repent, God would bring about a diaspora; scattering or dispersal of the Jews into the nations of the world.  Although this diaspora was partially fulfilled in the Assyrian conquests, the complete fulfillment did not happen until 70 A.D. when Rome destroyed the Temple in Jerusalem as was prophesized by Christ (Matthew 24:1-2).  This scattering extended beyond national Israel into the faithful remnant of spiritual Israel and also into the Church (Luke 1:5-55, Acts 8:1-4; 11:19, James 1:1 and I Peter 1:1).  This is the contextual substance of Hosea 2:1-23.

1 Say ye unto your brethren, Ammi; and to your sisters, Ruhamah. 2 Plead with your mother, plead: for she is not my wife, neither am I her husband: let her therefore put away her whoredoms out of her sight, and her adulteries from between her breasts; 3 Lest I strip her naked, and set her as in the day that she was born, and make her as a wilderness, and set her like a dry land, and slay her with thirst. 4 And I will not have mercy upon her children; for they be the children of whoredoms. 5 For their mother hath played the harlot: she that conceived them hath done shamefully: for she said, I will go after my lovers, that give me my bread and my water, my wool and my flax, mine oil and my drink. 6 Therefore, behold, I will hedge up thy way with thorns, and make a wall, that she shall not find her paths. 7 And she shall follow after her lovers, but she shall not overtake them; and she shall seek them, but shall not find them: then shall she say, I will go and return to my first husband; for then was it better with me than now. 8 For she did not know that I gave her corn, and wine, and oil, and multiplied her silver and gold, which they prepared for Baal. 9 Therefore will I return, and take away my corn in the time thereof, and my wine in the season thereof, and will recover my wool and my flax given to cover her nakedness. 10 And now will I discover her lewdness in the sight of her lovers, and none shall deliver her out of mine hand. 11 I will also cause all her mirth to cease, her feast days, her new moons, and her sabbaths, and all her solemn feasts. 12 And I will destroy her vines and her fig trees, whereof she hath said, These are my rewards that my lovers have given me: and I will make them a forest, and the beasts of the field shall eat them. 13 And I will visit upon her the days of Baalim, wherein she burned incense to them, and she decked herself with her earrings and her jewels, and she went after her lovers, and forgat me, saith the LORD. 14 {beginning during the Tribulation, God will begin to draw Jews to Him with special and miraculous means} Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her. 15 And I will give her her vineyards from thence, and the valley of Achor for a door of hope: and she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, and as in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt. 16 And it shall be at that day, saith the LORD, that thou shalt call me Ishi; and shalt call me no more Baali. 17 For I will take away the names of Baalim out of her mouth, and they shall no more be remembered by their name. 18 And in that day will I make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven, and with the creeping things of the ground: and I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them to lie down safely. 19 And I will betroth thee unto me for ever; yea, I will betroth thee unto me in righteousness, and in judgment, and in lovingkindness, and in mercies. 20 I will even betroth thee unto me in faithfulness: and thou shalt know the LORD. 21 And it shall come to pass in that day, I will hear, saith the LORD, I will hear the heavens, and they shall hear the earth; 22 And the earth shall hear the corn, and the wine, and the oil; and they shall hear Jezreel. 23 And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God” (Hosea 2:1-23).

          All that God said He would do in Hosea 2:9-13 has already been fulfilled.  Because Israel credited the Baals (“Baalim”) with their material blessings, God was going to “take away” or take back what He had given them (vs. 9).  God would do this at the very time when Israel expected their harvests to come in.  Although there was a partial fulfillment of this at the time of Hosea as God caused the crops to fail and brought the Assyrians upon them, ultimately and chronologically, this prophecy was fulfilled at the first advent of Messiah.  Israel was expecting deliverance into the Kingdom.  Instead, they were dispersed into the nations of the world.  Therefore, this refers to “the times of the Gentiles.”
There are two main New Testament texts connecting the Church Age with “the times of the Gentiles” that are prophesied in Hosea 2:11-13.  These two texts are Luke 21:20-24 and Romans chapter eleven.  We will not take the time to deal extensively with these two texts here because we will deal with them when we look at Romans chapter eleven. 

However, there are certain truths from Hosea 2:11-13 that show us when this prophecy was fulfilled.  “11 I will also cause all her mirth to cease, her feast days, her new moons, and her sabbaths, and all her solemn feasts. 12 And I will destroy her vines and her fig trees, whereof she hath said, These are my rewards that my lovers have given me: and I will make them a forest, and the beasts of the field shall eat them. 13 And I will visit upon her the days of Baalim, wherein she burned incense to them, and she decked herself with her earrings and her jewels, and she went after her lovers, and forgat me, saith the LORD.” 

Four judgments are described as part of the times of the Gentiles and the Church Age. 

1. “Mirth to cease;” through the institution of the New Covenant, God caused National Israel to be dispersed in all the nations of the world, where since the beginning of the Church Age they have been under the chastisement of God. 
2. “Her feast days, her new moons, and her sabbaths, and all her solemn feasts” would cease; none of these aspects of the Mosaic Covenant are carried into the New Covenant (Gal. 4:10, Col. 2:16-17).  These days have ceased.  The word “cease” in Hosea 2:11 is actually the Hebrew word shabath (shaw-bath'), the same word translated Sabbath in the Old Testament books.  In other words, these Mosaic times, seasons, and Sabbath days would be put on hold or to rest throughout the Church Age until the beginning of the Kingdom Age.  This is a critical truth for the various types of Sabbatarians of modern day Christianity (Seventh Day Adventists, Seventh Day Baptist, and Covenant Theologians with their Sunday Sabbath replacement). 
3. “And I will destroy her vines and her fig trees;” God would make Israel a wasteland (Jer. 2:15; 4:17; Ezek. 12:20) as opposed to it having been “a land flowing with milk and honey” (Exodus 3:8 & 17).
4. “And I will visit upon her the days of Baalim;” this refers to the paganism of the Gentiles in “the times of the Gentiles.”  The “times of the Gentiles began with the capture of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar in 606 B.C.  Jehoiakim reigned in Jerusalem as a puppet of Nebuchadnezzar until 598 B.C. when Nebuchadnezzar marched an army to Jerusalem and Jehoiakim immediately surrendered.  The “times of the Gentiles” will continue until the second coming of Messiah (Rev. 19:11-21).

          This leads us to the next text in Hosea 1:9-10 that Paul references in Romans 9:26.  “And it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people; there shall they be called the children of the living God.”

          This next point is critical - Israel would be set aside (not cast away) for the duration of the Church Age.  The fact that this setting aside of Israel would take place over three generations is manifested by the three successive children of “Gomer the daughter of Diblaim” (Hosea 1:3; because Diblaim was a whore, we cannot assume these children were the children of Hosea).  As the Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary says, the names of each of these children show the progression of God’s chastisement on national Israel. 

Lo-Ammi--once ‘My people,’ but henceforth not so (Eze 16:8).  The intervals between the marriage and the successive births of the three children, imply that three successive generations are intended.  Jezreel, the first child, represents the dynasty of Jeroboam I and his successors, ending with Jehu’s shedding the blood of Jeroboam’s line in Jezreel; it was there that Jezebel was slain, in vengeance for Naboth’s blood shed in the same Jezreel (1Ki 16:1; 2Ki 9:21,30).  The scenes of Jezreel were to be enacted over again on Jehu’s degenerate race.  At Jezreel Assyria routed Israel [JEROME].  The child’s name associates past sins, intermediate punishments, and final overthrow.  Lo-ruhamah (‘not pitied’), the second child, is a daughter, representing the effeminate period which followed the overthrow of the first dynasty, when Israel was at once abject and impious.  Lo-Ammi (‘not my people’), the third child, a son, represents the vigorous dynasty (2Ki 14:25) of Jeroboam II; but, as prosperity did not bring with it revived piety, they were still not God’s people.[1]

          God’s chastisement of Israel would come in three stages or phases revealed by the names of the three children of Gomer.

1. Jezreel (yiz-reh-ale'); meaning God will sow.  “In that day” (Hosea 1:5) refers to the God’s breaking up the house of Israel (the ten Northern tribes), which followed shortly after the “overthrow of the house of Jehu[2].”
2. Lo-ruhamah (lo roo-khaw-maw'); meaning not pitied.  The Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary translates this name, “not an object of mercy or gracious favor.”  “MAURER translates according to the primary meaning, ‘No more will I have mercy on the house of Israel, so as to pardon them’[3].”  Once the Assyrians took the Northern Kingdom (the ten northern tribes), Israel was never again restored.  Judah (and Jerusalem) was captured by Babylon and restored after seventy years of captivity[4].
3. Lo-Ammi (lo am-mee'); meaning not my people.  Because God’s chastisement did not bring the repentance and the revival as intended, God would set aside Israel until a future day of restoration (see Hosea 2:10-11 below). 

10 Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God. 11 Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel be gathered together, and appoint themselves one head, and they shall come up out of the land: for great shall be the day of Jezreel” (Hosea 1:10-11).

          Clearly the text of Hosea 1:10-11 is referring to the nation of Israel (the ten Northern tribes).  However, in Romans 9:26, Paul by the inspiration of the Spirit of God is including Gentiles saved during the Church Age in with restored national Israel (Romans 9:30; this is what is commonly referred to as a Complimentary Hermeneutic; in other words, new and added revelation by the inspiration of the New Covenant Scriptures completes or clarifies what has been said previously in the Old Testament Scriptures).  Of course, these saved Gentiles will be grafted into the new nation of Israel (primarily the 144,000 sealed Jews from Revelation 7:4-9 along with all other Jews entering the Kingdom Age who will also become saved Jews during the seven-year Tribulation; Romans 11:26-32) as they become part of spiritual Israel, which is the Faith Seed of Abraham.  Church Age believers, including saved Gentiles and saved Jews from the Church Age, will become the new Melchisedecan priesthood (“sons of Zadok,” Ezekiel 40:46, 44:15, 48:11 – to be dealt with extensively later) of Israel during the Kingdom Age.  This fact is primary in the purpose of Romans chapters nine, ten, and eleven. 

[1] Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary, Sword Searcher Software, 4.8
[2] Keil and Delitzsch Old Testament Commentary, SwordSearcher Software, 4.8
[3] Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary, SwordSearcher Software, 4.8
[4] Ibid

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Numerous studies and series are available free of charge for local churches at: http://www.disciplemakerministries.org/ 
Dr. Lance Ketchum serves the Lord as a Church Planter, Evangelist/Revivalist. 
He has served the Lord for over 40 years.

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