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Chapter 12

The Chosen Ones

Rev 7:7

"…of the tribe of Issachar twelve thousand were sealed…"

When Jesus sent His twelve disciples out to do ministry, He commanded them, saying: "Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you go, preach, saying, "The kingdom of heaven is at hand. Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give."" (Matthew 10:5-8).

This mission to the lost sheep of the house of Israel still goes on today. In the last parable of Jesus concerning the endtimes (Matthew 25:31-46), Jesus specifically shows us how He divides His sheep from the goats when He comes to judge the nations:

"When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.

Then the King will say to those on His right hand, "Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me."

Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, "Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?" And the King will answer and say to them, "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me. "

Then He will also say to those on the left hand, "Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me."

"Then they also will answer Him, saying, "Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?' Then He will answer them, saying, "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.' And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."

The New Testament clearly taught us to love and honor even the least of the brothers of the Lord. Who were the brothers of Jesus? Jesus Himself was a Jew. All of His disciples were Jews. All the writers of the Old and New Testaments were Jews. His brothers were clearly the Jewish people.

In Ephesians 2:11-18, the Jews and the Gentiles were united by Christ in one body to become one new man in Christ.

We should never forget that we are Gentiles. In fact, we were formerly called the uncircumcised by those who took pride in being circumcised. At that time we did not know about Christ. We were foreigners to the people of Israel. We had no part in the promises that God had made to them. We were living in this world without hope and without God. We were far away from God. But Christ offered His life's blood as a sacrifice and brought us near God.

Christ had made peace between Jews and Gentiles. He had united us by breaking down the wall of hatred that separated us. Christ gave His own body to fulfill all the laws of Moses with all its rules and commands. He even brought the Jews and the Gentiles together creating one new man in Christ. He united us in peace. On the cross Christ took away our hatred for each other. He also made peace between us and God by uniting Jews and Gentiles in one body. Christ came and preached peace to the Gentiles, who were far from God, and peace to the Jews, who were near God. And because of Christ, all of us could come to the Father by the same Spirit.

In Romans 11:11-36, Paul wrote that all Israel shall be saved! Would the people of Israel fall and never to get up again? Certainly not! Their failure made it possible for us, the Gentiles, to be saved. This would make the people of Israel jealous. If the Gentiles were blessed so much by Israel's rejection of their Messiah, they would be blessed even more by Israel's full return to their God. Someone noted that the number of people coming to receive Christ corresponded proportionately to the number of Jews returning to Israel.

When Israel rejected God, the Gentiles were able to turn to Him. And God had not forgotten about Israel! He would make friends with Israel again. He would resurrect Israel from death back to life! In May 1948, the modern State of Israel was founded. It was undoubtedly one of the most important events in history. For the first time in world history, a people that had been uprooted and dispersed for more than 2000 years returned as a sovereign nation back to their historic beloved homeland. This incredible wonder occurred after the Holocaust, an unforgettable event that shocked the whole world!

The most amazing miracle was the people who rebuilt the modern nation of Israel. These builders were not strong, healthy and muscular men. They were neither rich with abundant supplies. Israel was built by Jewish men and women who had just escaped the hells of Nazi concentration camps.

These courageous survivors were staggered ashore, barely alive. Their bodies were famished, skinny and thin, but their determination were strong and their hearts courageous. Against insurmountable odds, facing European opposition, American apathy and British blockades, they were decided and determined to make their homes in the Holy Land.

As Gentiles, we are not to be proud and arrogant! Paul told us the mystery of what had happened to the people of Israel (Romans 11:25-28). Some of them had become stubborn, and they would remain so until the complete number of the Gentiles has come in. After which, all of Israel will be saved, as the Scriptures say, "The Deliverer will come out of Zion, and He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob; For this is My covenant with them, when I take away their sins."

God is faithful to all His covenants and promises. Whenever He had promised, He would fulfill. If God is not faithful to the Old Covenant, how can He be faithful to the New Covenant? He is the Faithful One!

One wrong teaching about the New Testament is this: "God makes the Old Covenant with Israel, and the New Covenant with the Church."

In Jeremiah 31:31-34 and Hebrews 8:7-13, the New Covenant was clearly made with Israel and not with the Church:

"Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah-- not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the LORD.

But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. No more shall every man teach his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, "Know the LORD,' for they all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them, says the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more."

What is the New Covenant? It is God putting His law in their minds, and writing it on their hearts so that He will be their God, and they shall be His people. Jesus did not come to bring us the New Covenant, He came to fulfill it. In Matthew 26:2, Jesus said, "For this is My blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins." He didn't say that this is the New Testament or Covenant. He said, "This is My blood of the New Covenant." He did not give us a New Covenant. The New Covenant was already given long ago in the Old Testament. He came to seal the New Covenant with His blood. In fact, the New Covenant was more correctly known as the Renewed Covenant. It was God renewing His Covenant and His love with His beloved people, Israel. Because they were blessed, we became blessed.

The good news came from the Jews. Jesus was a Jew! And the good news had come to us Gentiles through the Jews. Now we are enjoying the love of God while the people of Israel are still far away from God. But they are still the chosen ones. God loves them because of their faithful forefathers. These gifts of God are irrevocable! God doesn't take back the gifts He has given! He has not forgotten about the people He has chosen.

We must always remember that we, Gentiles, had once rejected God. God showed His mercy to the Jews. But when Israel rejected God, God bestowed His mercy upon us. Because of the mercy God has bestowed unto us, God will show His mercy to Israel again! This is the endless and eternal love of God. All people have disobeyed God, both Jews and Gentiles alike! God will have mercy on all of us!

Who can measure the wealth and wisdom and knowledge of God? Who can understand His decisions or explain what He does? Has anyone known the thoughts of the Lord or given him advice? Has anyone loaned something to the Lord that must be repaid? Everything comes from the Lord. All things were made because of Him and will return to Him (Romans 11:28-36).

God's relationship with Israel is everlasting. God called and chose her to fulfill His purposes and plans to redeem the whole earth! They were obedient to God's Word, and they recorded it down. That's how we have our Bible today! They brought forth the Light of the world when one of their descendants was born as the Messiah and the Saviour.

The Jewish people have partially fulfilled their roles so far. This fulfilled the Abrahamic covenant that "in you will all the nations on the earth be blessed" (Genesis 12:3). As humans, they erred. But who did not commit mistakes or sins? God had already forgiven them when He sent His Son to live among them. His name is Jesus, which means "He shall save His people from their sins." His people was and still is the Jews!

God made an everlasting covenant with Israel. He will never forget or annul His ancient people. If God will not fulfill His promises to Israel, what guarantee do we have that He will fulfill His promises to the Church?

What is the role of the Church? Basically, two-fold. To make disciple of all nations (Matthew 28:18-20) and to show mercy to the people of Israel (Romans 11:30-31). How can we show mercy to Israel? We are:

  • To give our material gifts to help them (Romans 15:27).
  • To pray for them especially peace in Israel (Psalm 122)
  • To be a watchman on the walls to protect them (Isaiah 62:6-7).
  • To help bringing the Jews back to Israel so that they can rebuild the Holy City of God (Isaiah 49:22-23; Isaiah 60:9-11).

What happens to the Church when she refuses to help Israel?

  • She will embrace the Replacement Theology.
  • She will become Anti-Semitic.
  • She will replace Israel.
  • She will not understand who she really was.
  • She will become arrogant and self-centred.
  • She will boast with the nations against the Jews and Israel.
  • She will miss the blessings of God by not blessing Israel.
  • She will have no role in God's redemption for Israel.
  • She will miss some of the greatest prophecies in both the Old and the New Testaments that are yet to be fulfilled with regards to God's prophetic calendar for Israel.
  • She will lose her opportunity to participate in God's plan and prophecy for the Church, Israel and the world today.

What happens to the Church when she helps Israel?

  • She will have the full gospel that includes both the Old and New Testament, and not just half the gospel in the New Testament.
  • She will fulfill her role in God's redemptive plan for the world, including Israel.
  • She will understand the faithfulness of God, never changing from Genesis to Revelation.
  • She will love and honor God by loving and honoring His covenant people.
  • She will have prophetic insights and foresights for the endtimes.
  • She will become better disciples of Christ as she embrace the Hebraic roots of her faith.

With the divine providence of God, I know all the promises in the Old and New Testaments will come true. I have a dream, and it is fashioned after Psalm 87:

I have a dream
Of a holy city upon a hill
The city of God
Where wonderful things do happen

I have a dream
When Egyptians and Babylonians
Are listed among the peoples
Who obey the Lord

I have a dream
When the people of Philistia, Tyre and Sudan
Are numbered among
The inhabitants of Jerusalem

I have a dream
Of Zion it will be said
All the nations
Belong there

I have a dream
The Lord will write a list of the peoples
And include all of them
As citizens of Jerusalem

I have a dream
When all the peoples of the earth
Will dance and sing together in Zion
Where all the blessings of God flow

I have a dream
When mercy and truth have met together
Righteousness and peace have kissed
And truth shall spring out of the earth

I have a dream
Of brothers dwelling in unity
Isaac and Ishmael
Jacob and Esau

I have a dream
Of a holy Bride
Ready to receive
Her Bridegroom

I have a dream
Of Israel and the Church
In one union
With Christ

I have a dream
Of perfect peace and rest
Dwelling and feasting
In the presence of God

I have a dream
Of a glorious kingdom
Where righteousness and mercy
Flow like a river wide

I have a dream
Of dreamers’ dreams coming true
Of the created
Meeting their Creator

I have a dream
Free at last!
Thank God Almighty
We are free at last!

As sons of Issachar, let's work while it is day. And I know that this dream will come true:

  • Because it is written in His Word
  • Because God will divinely provide to ensure its fulfillment
  • Because all things are possible with God
  • Because the works of God will never lack the resources of God.
  • Because the Word of God has the power to fulfill every promise it makes!

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