Two House Chronicles

Israel and the Church

 

Common Law Copyright 2016 by Hope Helen Huerta

 

As mentioned in the essay on the insufficient presuppositions of Dispensationalism, God is not a man that repents or changes his mind (1 Sam 15:29). Conflict arises with the text from Samuel when one views scripture through an Open Theist's1 lens to perceive that God offered the MK (Messianic kingdom) at the first advent and did not know how the Jews would respond and then reacted to their response precipitously. In other words, God changed his mind. And a Libertarian lens does not lessen conflict either, as it still has God repent in his offer of the kingdom. Even so, according to Peter the “elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father,” avowed Christ—and those who disavowed him, “were appointed.”

   “Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone…. Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.” 1Peter 2:6-8

Peter presents problems to Libertarians or Open Theists. And for the same reason Paul confuses them also.

“Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour?” Romans 9:21

Libertarians and Open Theists attempt to assert Paul conveyed only a corporate sense in Romans 9 to avoid Compatibilism2 but, as affirmed in the insufficient presuppositions of Covenantalism, in election the corporate and individual senses are synonymous; they cannot be separated. The elect body of Israel is made of its elect individuals as contrasted from their doomed brethren concerning the promises, prophecies and restoration: “As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.” Romans 9:13. Dispensationalist Thomas Ice acknowledged this distinction in his essay of 1 Peter 2, which is tantamount to conceding the correspondence between individual and corporate election.

“Since Hosea is a type of God in that book, the Lord is saying that not all of the children of Israel are His offspring. (I take it this is the Lord’s way of saying many within national Israel were unbelievers in relation to their individual salvation while still a part of national Israel.)”3

 

“However, since Peter is writing to ‘the Israel of God’ or Jewish believers, he is listing these Old Testament descriptions of Israel to let them know that everything promised them in the Old Testament is being fulfilled through their faith in Jesus as their Messiah. This is juxtaposed by a comparison with unbelieving Jews who have not trusted Jesus as the Messiah of Israel in verses 7–8. Peter speaks of “the stone which the builders rejected” (2:7) as a likely reference to Jewish leadership that lead the nation to reject Jesus as the Messiah. Peter further describes Jewish unbelievers as ones that view Jesus as “a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense” (2:8a). He notes that these Jewish unbelievers “stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed” (2:8b).”4

Covenantalists such as Thomas R. Schreiner and Russell Moore have also inadvertently agreed to the concurrence between corporate and individual election in their statements below.

“All God's choice of a corporate group means is that God chose that all who put their faith in Christ would be saved. Those who put their faith in Christ would be designated the Church.

     “Those who defend corporate election are conscious of the fact that it is hard to separate corporate from individual election, for logic would seem to require that the individuals that make up a group cannot be separated from the group itself.”5

 

“Both covenant theology and dispensationalism, however, often discuss Israel and the church without taking into account the Christocentric nature of biblical eschatology. The future restoration of Israel has never been promised to the unfaithful, unregenerate members of the nation (John 3:3-10; Rom 2:25- 29)-only to the faithful remnant.

     “The church is not Israel, at least not in a direct, unmediated sense. The remnant of Israel-a biological descendant of Abraham, a circumcised Jewish firstborn son who is approved of by God for his obedience to the covenant-receives all of the promises due to him.”6

Covenantalist C. Matthew McMahon also inadvertently acknowledged the correspondence between corporate and individual predestination in his analyzation of the Hebrew term bachar, translated as chosen in Deuteronomy 7:6. After producing the few extraneous uses of the word he analyzes where:

“… it is used of God to choose the ultimate destinies and eternal salvation of particular people or of the nation Israel… It is a specific choosing of a people who will be holy before Yahweh to do His will. This choosing or election is not based on their own merit but on God’s good pleasure and for His glory as seen in Deuteronomy 7:7.”7

Concurrence between individual and corporate election does not support the fallacy that God offered the kingdom to those appointed to wrath, as it was never theirs to inherit; the kingdom was the birthright of those who avowed Christ, those who were “predestined” according to Paul in Romans 8:29-20 and Ephesian 1:4-5. The NT affirms those who had the rights to the MK avowed Christ and yet it was not consummated, which substantiates it was not the appointed time of the MK. Christ declaration he had not come the first time to send peace (Mt 10:34) reveals that Jeremiah’s prophecy, “Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely,” is a second advent phenomenon (Jer 23:5-6). The time in which Judah and Israel/Ephraim shall dwell safely commences when the beast and false prophet come to their fiery end in Revelation 19: the second advent. There is no true support for a first advent offer of the kingdom. All of the aforesaid is in harmony with the NT revelation of two advents hidden to prophets; Dispensationalist R. Bruce Compton unwittingly concedes the aforesaid when he acknowledged the prophets were not allowed to see all the “implications or significance” of what they wrote.8 The implications and significance of the two advents are revealed in the NT, such as the spiritual fulfilment Malachi 4:5-6 by John the Baptist that confirms the widely recognized hermeneutic of PT (Prophetic Telescoping), to be dealt with presently.

 

Dispensationalists perceive that the offer of the MK and its postponement at the rejection of Christ (their Parenthesis) was contingent upon the endorsement of the nation and is clearly a fallacy based on Open Theism or Libertarianism, which the Dispensationalist Lewis Sperry Chafer attempted to harmonize. 

“In the light of two determining facts, namely, (a) that Jehovah's Lamb was in the redeeming purpose slain from the foundation of the world and (b) that had Adam not sinned there could have been no need of a redeemer, why did Jehovah tell Adam not to sin? And what would have become of the redemptive purpose had Adam obeyed God? These objections to the so-called postponement theory do not take into consideration the fact of the divinely purposed test involved and the necessary postponement resulting from the failure under testing, the failure itself being anticipated. These are evidently very serious problems for some Calvinists to face. If it be claimed that the birth and death of Christ were predicted and therefore made sure, it is equally true that the precross offer of the earthly Messianic kingdom to Israel by her Messiah in the days of His "lowly guise" was also made sure by prediction.”9

Chafer’s argument (b) is fallacy considering the idiom, “the Lamb slain before the foundations of the world,” invokes the principle of foreknowledge in Revelation 13:8. The idiom conveys God’s foreknowledge of Adam’s fall, which Chafer concedes but fails to grasp that it denies the possibility of a different outcome, disregarding God’s foreknowledge; Chafer’s surmising is pure fallacy. For this reason, God’s foreknowledge also supports the correspondence between corporate and individual election in Romans 9:21. According to Dispensationalism the Church was not anticipated, it was dependent upon the endorsement of those appointed to doomed, which conflicts with the idiom Christ slain from the foundation of the world that affirms God’s foreknowledge. For these reasons the idiom does not support Chafer’s argument concerning Dispensationalism’s perception Christ offered the kingdom at the first advent. The notion of postponement forces the view God’s foreknowledge is limited in the Open Theist’s perception. No doubt Chafer’s perception is an Open Theist’s view.

 

Actually, Chafer never cites one example of Christ offering the kingdom to the Jews, let alone a prophecy of it being offered. He alludes to the incident where Christ fulfills Zechariah 9:9 but there is no overt account in any of the gospels where Christ offers the MK to the children of Jerusalem; if there were an overt account they would not have to rely on a theological dispute to sustain their assertion. Contrary to Chafer’s notion John’s gospel clearly states the disciples did not grasp the significance of Jerusalem’s king riding the colt until Christ had been glorified (Jn 12:16). This sustains the people could not have comprehended the significance of Zechariah 9:9 being fulfilled at the time it occurred. The contemporary Dispensationalist, Michael J. Vlach, attempts to vindicate the MK was offered to Israel and rejected in Matthew 11.

“The rest of Matthew 11 further discusses the rejection of the kingdom message by the leaders and people of Israel. With 11:14 Jesus states, ‘And if you are willing to accept it, John himself is Elijah who was to come.’ The conditional particle ‘if’ (ei) indicates that if Israel would receive John and his message then he would be the fulfillment of the Malachi 4 prophecy concerning the coming of Elijah. Toussaint notes, ‘There is scarcely a passage in Scripture which shows more clearly that the kingdom was being offered to Israel at this time.’”10

But Vlach failed to grasp the significance of the succeeding revelation that affirms the prophecy of Elijah telescopes into the second advent.

   “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things. But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.” Matthew 17:11-12

Christ’s explanation conveys the Classic or General Prophecy principle of PT.11 Simply put, God’s intent concerning Malachi 4:5-6 was to illustrate both advents have reoccurring phenomenon.  Like typology, the first is an image of the second advent; the consummation at the second advent accomplishes what was commenced at the first advent.12 Avowal of the “salvation” established by the rejection of the Son of man (Mk 9:11-13) at the first advent will be the rewarded at the second advent, at the consummation of 2 Samuel 7:10 concerning the Davidic Covenant. Hebrews 9:28 affirms Christ was offered once as the propitiation for sin at the first advent (1Jn 2:2) and therefore the second appearance consummates the salvation of the elect from their temporal enemies depicted as the separation of the wheat from the tares in said parable (Mt 13:24-30). Such evidence also conveys the sifting in Amos 9:9-10 corresponds to the parable of the wheat and the tares in Matthew 13. Philippians 2:6-8 confirms Christ “came” to lay aside his power and die for us, while Revelation 19 and other NT texts substantiate he returns to consummate the MK, all of which renders the hypothesis Christ offered the kingdom a fallacy. Christ returns in power to receive the crown of David and sit upon his throne (Mt 25:31-32). In PT there are two Elias but correspondence cannot extend to consummation; there can be only one consummation. At the consummation persecution ends in the day “Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely,” which cannot correspond with the time of the sifting as, “a man's enemies are the men of his own house.” Jeremiah 23:5-6; Micah 7:6. By nature the consummation follows the sifting. This is also substantiated by Matthew 10:23 that affirms persecution is contemporaneous with the commission to proclaim the kingdom of heaven until the return of Christ.

   “But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come.” Matthew 10:23

Christ prophesied Israel’s persecution would continue until his return, which also confirms 2 Samuel 7:10 like Jeremiah 23:5-6 was intended to be consummated at the second advent, the MK (Ps 110:1; Mt 10:23; 25:31; Lk 19:12-15). Christ came as a servant of rulers, despised by men and abhorred by the shepherds of Judah in fulfillment of Psalms 2:1-3, 118:22-24, Isaiah 49:7, 53:1-4 and Zechariah 11:8 to name but a few. This is also corroborated in the NT by Matthew and Mark when they state Christ came not to be ministered unto as a king (Mt 20:28; Mk 10:45). Under a strict grammatical-historical hermeneutic there is no scriptural support for an offering of the MK at first advent.

 

Vlach changes the meaning of “the kingdom of heaven” as an ad hoc in his failure to produce any real evidence Christ offered the MK at the first advent. He believes the transition from God offering the MK and his change of mind came between Matthew’s chapters 11 through 13, where Vlach also changes the meaning of the phrase “the kingdom of heaven.” 

“Matthew 13 must be understood in light of the events preceding this chapter, especially chapters 11 and 12. The kingdom promised by the Old Testament prophets was “at hand”—its coming was on the brink. In fact, it was present in the person, words, and works of Jesus. All that needed to happen was a national recognition of the Messiah and repentance from both the people and leaders of Israel. Instead, the King and His kingdom were met with hostility and rejection and violence had been done to the kingdom program. Matthew 13 marks a dramatic shift in the kingdom program as Jesus withdraws from wide scale proclamation of the kingdom to the cities of Israel and begins to share new truths or “mysteries” concerning the kingdom with His disciples.”13

Vlach is at odds with Christ who declared that Malachi 4:5-6 had dual fulfillment in Matthew 17:11-12, affirming of the principle of PT. Dispensationalist David L. Larsen concedes the conveyance of PT pertaining to sections of Matthew 23 and 24, while failing to apply the hermeneutic to the prophecy of Elijah, the Day of the Lord and the good tidings in Luke 4:17-21.

“A future generation of Jews would ‘see him again.’ He speaks to his listeners and by prophetic telescoping reaches forward to an end-time population. Similarly the Olivet Discourse has at points a distinctly Jewish cast (“not on the Sabbath”) and a testimony which the end-time Jewish remnant would render (Matthew 24:14).”14

Christ’s explanation in Matthew 17:11-12 provides a hermeneutic in interpreting scripture and especially the phrase the Day of the Lord in Malachi 4:5, which is an idiom conveying judgment, the crucible of refinement for the elect. Christ’s affirmation that, “Elias is come already,” in a sense conveys judgment commenced but will be consummated at the final judgment: “Judgment must begin at the house of God.” 1 Peter 4:17. The judgment that commenced with the first advent rebuilds the tabernacle of David that is consummated at the second advent as the MK. What is conveyed by the Day of the Lord in Malachi and the other prophets is refinement of the elect in the crucible of adversity, prior to any notion of presentation (2Ti 3:12; 1Pe 1:6-7). This is why the call by John the Baptist commenced with “repent.” The gifts follow contrition. Again, God directs Israel to save them; Israel does not direct herself unto salvation apart from God’s regeneration and contrary to their predestination (Jn 3:3; Rom 8:29-30; 1Pe 1:2).

 

The principle of PT is also applied to more than just John the Baptist’s mission. The principle is applied in Luke 4:16-21 also, where Christ recites the first part of Isaiah 61 as fulfilled. The good tidings to the meek is seen in the same context Vlach states the MK was offered.

Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.” Matthew 5:5

Binding up the brokenhearted, proclaiming liberty to the captives, and “the opening of the prison to them that are bound” was a first advent phenomenon, as the kingdom of God/heaven is developed by the spreading of the Gospel. Dispensationalist Thomas Ice unintendedly concurred when he conceded in his essay, 1 Peter 2 and Replacement Theology, the biological descendants had reserved, “everything promised them,” in that Hosea 2:23 was being, “fulfilled,” in Peter’s day.15 Unfortunately, Ice strayed from the grammatical-historical perception, which is pervasive in Dispensationalism, by omitting to mention it was specifically the prophecies to the nation Ephraim that were being fulfilled. 

 

Christ’s revelation that Malachi 4:5-6 must be perceived as the classic prophetic method of PT confirms that John the Baptist’s proclamation “the kingdom of God was at hand” was not a proposal of the MK. Dispensationalists’ failure to grasp the significance of PT in addressing the prophecy of Elijah led Cyrus Ingerson Scofield to fallaciously perceive a gap in the text of Malachi 3:1, ignoring the hermeneutic of PT in interpreting the text.16 Christ’s first appearance was that of a refiner of his disciples, who in spirit fulfilled the prophecy of the refinement of the sons of Levi in Malachi 3:3 just as John the Baptist fulfilled the prophecy of Elijah in spirit; the latter being conceded by both John Nelson Darby and Scofield.17 Christ came to the temple of God to refine the remnant of Israel so that their offerings became acceptable to God, while the offerings in Jerusalem became obsolete.

   “Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 1:6-7

 

   “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12: 1

 

   “That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.” Romans 15:16

 

“In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away.” Hebrews 8:13

 

   “Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein. We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle.” Hebrews 13:9-10

As stated, Dispensationalists have conceded the eschatological promise of Elijah was fulfilled in spirit by John the Baptist, which inadvertently concedes the dual fulfillment of PT as a hermeneutic in perceiving Malachi 5:5-6 as well as 3:1-7 in eschatological prophecy. Their failure to grasp the significance of PT concerning Malachi 4:5-6 led Scofield to mistakenly perceive a parenthesis where PT is called for in Malachi 3, which nevertheless inadvertently acknowledges that the interval between the advents was planned and that Matthew 13 portrays this interval.

“The f.c. of Malachi 3:1 is quoted of John the Baptist; Matthew 11:10; Mark 1:2; Luke 7:27 but the second clause, "the Lord whom ye see," etc., is nowhere quoted in the N.T. The reason is obvious: in everything save the fact of Christ's first advent, the latter clause awaits fulfilment Habakkuk 2:20. Malachi 3:2-5 speak of judgment, not of grace. Malachi, in common with other O.T. prophets, saw both advents of Messiah blended in one horizon, but did not see the separating interval described in Matthew 13.”18

Scofield’s interpretation is an inadvertent acknowledgement of a planned interval and its correspondence with Matthew 13, which also sustains correspondence with the sifting of Israel in Amos 9:9-10 as stated previously. As reveled in the insufficient presuppositions of Dispensationalism, Walter C. Kaiser, Jr. confirmed the object of the prepositional phrase “after these things” (Μετὰ ταῦτα) in Acts 15:16 did not pertain to how God had first visited the Gentiles, which was how James prefaced his citation of Amos, but pertained to the context in Amos, of, “the destruction of the temple, the fact of the diaspora, and the end of Samaria,” all of which led to the consequential sifting in Amos.      

“Now ‘after these things’—the destruction of the temple, the fact of the diaspora, and the end of Samaria—warned James, with an eye to the Amos context, God ‘would turn again’ (anastrepsō) to re-establish the house of David. To obtain the dispensational view one must assume that the ‘first’ of v 14 signified the ‘first [era]’ (a clear interpolation) while the second reference was given a sequential meaning: ‘After this [gospel dispensation]’28 God would ‘come again’ and restore Israel. But on these grounds neither phrase is a literal, grammatical or natural interpretation of James. Dispensationalism has thereby yielded any hermeneutical edge it possessed by so arguing.”19

Dispensationalists assert the object of the prepositional phrase pertains to how God had “first” visited the Gentiles in order to maintain the sifting and rebuilding of the tent as a second advent phenomenon.20 Essentially, Kaiser affirms the sifting as a first advent phenomenon, which constitutes the rebuilding of the David’s tabernacle and God’s visitation of the Gentiles. In support of Kaiser, Progressive Dispensationalist W. Edward Glenny affirms James’ citation from Amos in Acts 15:16-17 conveys the re-establishment of Davidic dynasty and the mission to the Gentiles as a contemporaneous plan through Christ commencing with the first advent, as opposed to the Classic and Revised Dispensationalists’ Parenthesis (Glenny neglects the sifting in the article).               

“We can draw several conclusions from out study of Amos 9 in Acts 15. First, in contrast to the beliefs of Covenant Theologians, the Church's existence is not due to God's rejection of Israel. It is a corollary of David's dynasty (and kingdom) being reestablished that the Gentile mission goes forth. Second, in the same vein, the Church is not Israel nor does it replace Israel. It is a result of God's revisiting Israel and reestablishing the Davidic monarchy and kingdom that the Gentiles can now come to God as Gentiles. (The conjunction 'so that' ... at the beginning of Acts 15:17 indicates that the purpose of God in building David's fallen tent is 'so that' Gentiles may be God's people. The rebuilding of the tent is distinct from the Gentile mission and is what enables it to take place. The conjunction makes no sense if the tent that is being rebuilt is the Church, or a new Israel, which includes the Gentile mission. The Gentile mission happens as a result of the building of the tent of David.) Third, in contrast to the belief of some Dispensationalists, the Gentile mission is not a parenthesis in God's program and plan. It is closely connected with God's work in Israel, and it is thoroughly consistent with the OT prophets and their message.”21

Glenny’s first and third claims are consistent, while his second creates tremendous tension with the NT, which will be analyzed presently. As a Dispensationalist Glenny only sees Israel as “a nation among nations”, which is in conflict with the OT (Old Testament) affirmation that Israel is redeemed while in exile as “a nation scattered amongst nations”, bereft of civil autonomy, recognized borders and mixed with the Gentiles when the prophecies of Hosea and Zechariah are taken into account, below. It is in this latter state that that has greater concurrence with the institution of the Church.

    “And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee, And shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul; That then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee.” Deuteronomy 30:1-3

 

 "But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine... Fear not: for I am with thee: I will bring thy seed from the east, and gather thee from the west... I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins." Isaiah 43:1, 5, 25

 

   “My righteousness is near; my salvation is gone forth, and mine arms shall judge the people; the isles shall wait upon me, and on mine arm shall they trust... Therefore the redeemed of the LORD shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their head: they shall obtain gladness and joy; and sorrow and mourning shall flee away... The captive exile hasteneth that he may be loosed, and that he should not die in the pit, nor that his bread should fail.” Isaiah 51:5, 11, 14

 

   “Thus saith the LORD, The people which were left of the sword found grace in the wilderness; even Israel, when I went to cause him to rest... For the LORD hath redeemed Jacob, and ransomed him from the hand of him that was stronger than he.” Jeremiah 31:2, 11

 

“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…. 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 2:19, 23

 

   “And they of Ephraim shall be like a mighty man, and their heart shall rejoice as through wine: yea, their children shall see it, and be glad; their heart shall rejoice in the LORD I will hiss for them, and gather them; for I have redeemed them: and they shall increase as they have increased. And I will sow them among the people: and they shall remember me in far countries; and they shall live with their children, and turn again.” Zechariah 10:7-9

In all the accounts above, Israel’s corporate redemption is established while they are yet a nation scattered amongst the nations and then they are restored to a “nation amongst nations.” Redeeming Israel in a scattered condition necessitates the development of the centrifugal worship prophesied by Christ in John 4:21-24. The first advent anticipation of centrifugal worship in Spirit and truth clarifies how Ephraim is redeemed then centrifugally planted in the world in Zechariah 10:6-9 and Hosea 2, which is in agreement with the parables in Matthew 13, especially that of the wheat and the tares. Judah is never portrayed being redeemed and then sown in the earth or as a defiled woman returned to her first husband in Hosea 2. The destinies of Ephraim and Judah went separate paths when God influenced Jeroboam’s confederation of the ten northern tribes and quelled Rehoboam’s quest to return them by coercion. Zechariah and Hosea present the greatest evidence the sifting is synonymous with God’s announcement of Ephraim’s corporate redemption at the first advent and that the phenomenon is multigenerational. (Clearly the contemporary state of the Jews created from the Palestinian state is not the MK). As revealed above, Glenny believes Amos 9:11-12 was fulfilled at the first advent, but as a Dispensationalist he must concede verses 13-15 remain to be consummated, which unintendedly acknowledges PT. PT destroys the notion that context supports the perception that Israel’s corporate redemption is confined to the second advent. Verses 13-15 of Amos 9 pertain to the second advent, the MK, or Israel as a divinely instituted “nation amongst nations”. Nevertheless, Dispensationalist’s maintain the sifting is not a protracted phenomenon; they attempt to confine it to Christ’s return based on context in Amos 9, not unlike their view of the fulfillment of the NC (New Covenant) in Jeremiah 31:31-34.22 Even so, many Dispensationalists agree the sifting has a redemptive constituent23 but fail to grasp the constituent is based upon the blotting of Israel’s sins that led to the mission to the Gentiles at the first advent, which, under the influence of the Holy Spirit, Zacharias and Simeon witness in the gospel of Luke.                     

   “And thou, child, shalt be called the prophet of the Highest: for thou shalt go before the face of the Lord to prepare his ways; To give knowledge of salvation unto his people by the remission of their sins.” Luke 1:76-77

 

For mine eyes have seen thy salvation, Which thou hast prepared before the face of all people; A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel." Luke 2:32

The former, above, pertains to John the Baptist’s appointment and the latter pertains to Christ’s appointment. Dispensationalists John Nelson Darby and Charles Caldwell Ryrie acknowledged sin was remitted, “once for all,”24 at the first advent, which is an unintentional concession that Israel’s redemption commenced with the first advent as well of the correspondence between individual and corporate election. The sifting in Amos 9:9-10 conveys a separation between those who are redeemed and those who, “die by the sword,” or those God rejects. Hebrews 10:26 confirm Christ’s sacrifice is withdrawn from those who reject the truth and that truth in the inter-advent dispensation is Christ (Ps 81:11-12; Jer 6:29-30; Lk 13:24). All the aforesaid supports the redemptive constituent of the sifting is the offering of the “once for all” blotting of sin retained by those who hear the Gospel and avow Christ.25 In essence, Darby and Ryrie’s concession of the blotting of sin at the first advent inadvertently concedes the sifting commenced with the blotting.26 This also agrees with Ice, previously, who inadvertently acknowledged that Israel’s redemption commenced at the first advent when he conceded that Peter cited Hosea 2:23 in 1 Peter 2:10 for the benefit of “the Israel of God,” as contrasted from his own brethren appointed to doom, “to let them know that everything promised them in the Old Testament is being fulfilled through their faith in Jesus as their Messiah.”27 Sifting is a process of separating wheat or corn from its husk, shaft and other unwanted constituents. The OT confirms the objective of the sifting is to winnow away those appointed to doom to preserve or save the elect (Pr 20:8, 26). Ice’s perception of 1 Peter 2 supports Christ provoked the Jews in the manner of sifting that has continued unabated between the advents, which also inadvertently concedes the sifting, with its redemptive constituent, commenced with the first advent; it reveals Christ as the sifter. Matthew 10 supports that Christ came to sift Israel, to cause this division amongst the Jews, to winnow out the undesirable constituents appointed to doom.

   “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven. Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household.” Matthew 10:32-36

(The Stone rejected by the builders also invokes the same ideas.) Acts unequivocally confirms that after Christ’s ascension the disciples continued to foment division concerning Christ and many were, “added to the church,” that they, “should be saved,” while those appointed to doom were winnow away and hardened according to Paul in Romans 11, in conformity with the sifting.

   “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ... Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.... And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart, Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” Acts 2:36, 38, 46-47

For these reasons, Kaiser has the proper perception of James’ intent in citing from Amos, which perceives the sifting as redemptive and a first century phenomenon that is synonymous with the rebuilding of the tabernacle of David by Christ, as well as the mission to the Gentiles. Classic and Revised Dispensationalists balk at the perception of the tabernacle of David must be perceived principally as the assembling of its human constituents during the inter-advent era, but the precedent for such a perception is in Peter’s epistle who perceived the individual members, symbolically as stones, are built upon “a spiritual house.” 1 Peter 2:5. The practice of PT by the prophets was not uncommon, which Dispensationalists concede,28 and the justification for its application in Amos 9 is irresistible.     

 

Justification for the application of PT in Amos 9 is also discovered in how the Gentiles are possessed and called by the name of the being that moved Amos to write: I will build it as in the days of old: That they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name.” Glenny attempts to support the Progressive Dispensationalist’s perception that “the Church is not Israel nor does it replace Israel,”29 by reverting to the Classic and Revised perception of Amos 9:12.

“A more literal rendering of the phrase “that bear my name” (NIV) is “that are called by my name” (ASV). The phrase “denotes ownership and the act of possession,” which can be accomplished by war (2 Sam 12:28) or agreement to the requests of those desiring to be owned and possessed (Isa 3:1) …. When the phrase is applied to Israel, as God’s people, it is based on their covenant relationship with him (Deut 28:10; 2 Chron 7:14). Gentiles, by contrast, have not been called by the name of the Lord (Isa 63:19). Such covenant relationship, as experienced by Israel, is not explicit in the MT of Amos 9:12. Here the ownership of control, which are basic to the meaning of this phrase, appear to be as a result of military conquest, as in 2 Samuel 12:28.”30

Glenny’s perception is caught in the dilemma that perceiving the Gentiles as a possession acquired by war is irrelevant concerning the calling of Gentiles in Acts. Peter testified that the Gentiles had received the Holy Spirit in the same capacity as the Jews without being circumcised; consequently, the issue of circumcision arose and inspired James to cite from Amos 9:11-12. The perception that Gentiles are subjugated by war in any context is bereft of any relevance concerning the circumstances at the first advent. The matter in Acts and the quote from Amos 9:12 concerns the mission to the Gentiles who bear the name of the being who moved Amos to write and the most relevant OT text that concerns this issues stems from Isaiah 49.    

   “And said unto me, Thou art my servant, O Israel, in whom I will be glorified… And he said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth.” Isaiah 49:3, 6

There is little controversy that the Servant, Israel, in the texts pertains to Christ, which is why Revised Dispensationalist Vlach acknowledges Christ is appointed the title of Israel in Isaiah 49.

“But what may be surprising to some is that many dispensationalists also accept Premise 2 that Jesus is identified with Israel. For instance, Craig Blaising states, ‘I agree with Strimple that the New Testament presents Christ as Israel.’ This author, too, believes that Christ is identified with Israel and that Matthew 1 and 2 indicates a strong connection between the nation Israel and Jesus. Jesus is the corporate Head of Israel who represents Israel.”31

By acknowledging that Christ is appointed the title Israel Vlach unintendedly affirms the “name” of the elect Gentiles in Amos 9:12 is Israel, as adopted sons and daughters. The most relevant NT texts that corroborates that Christ is the being that moved Amos to write are Revelation 19:10 and 1 Peter 1:10-11.       

   “Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you: Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.” 1 Peter 1:10-11

 

   “And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” Revelation 19:10-11

The texts corroborate it was Christ who moved the prophets to write, which is further supported in the opening of the Revelation.

   “The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John: Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.” Revelation 1:1-2

John’s apocalypse conveys God reveals his foreknowledge to Christ who revealed it to the prophets or to the angels and then man. Dispensationalist Tony Garland concurs that the being who moved the prophets was Christ in his commentary to Revelation 19:10, which cites 1 Peter 1:11 in support.

“Does this verse teach that the testimony from Jesus is the spirit of prophecy? Or that the testimony about Jesus is the spirit of prophecy? Both of these statements are certainly true. For it is the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Christ (John 14:18; Rom. Rom. 8:9; 1Pe. 1:11) Who is the source of all prophecy (see below) and the primary focus of the revelation He provides concerns Jesus…. Peter indicates that it was “the Spirit of Christ who was in” the prophets that testified. Thus, the Spirit of Jesus was the empowering source of their testimony.”32

Garland’s concession that it was Christ who moved the prophets also unintentionally substantiates the “name” in Amos 9:12 is Israel, as Christ is appointed the title Israel in Isaiah 49:3, to raises, “up the tribes of Jacob,” and is given as a light to the Gentiles, so that he may be his Father’s, “salvation unto the end of the earth.” This was also substantiated in the essay on the insufficient presuppositions of Dispensationalism where it was revealed the angel of the Lord who declared, “I will never break my covenant,” in Judges 2:1, was preincarnate Christ.33 Dispensationalists perceive the raising of the tribes of Jacob as strictly a second advent phenomenon, but cannot help but concede sin was remitted, “once for all,” at the first advent, which unintentionally affirms that Israel’s redemption commenced with the first advent. The perception that Israel’s redemption commenced with the first advent is easily supported in the interpretation Ephraim was redeemed corporately at the first advent by the blotting of their sins and then sown in the earth (Hos 2:19-23; Zec 10:6-9; Mt 13:24-30), but the Dispensationalist’s perception Israel’s redemption is confined to the second advent creates tremendous tension with the former perception. This is due to the Dispensationalist’s failure to discern Ephraim from Judah in the inter-advent dispensation. Dispensationalists concede the vexation and envy between Judah and Ephraim continues until the second advent (Isa 11:13)34  but are confronted by the historical account the Jews do not know where Ephraim abides, which maintains any enmity between them a moot issue. Yet, Two House Theology has a place for this vexation and envy in their perception Ephraim is redeemed corporately at the first advent by the blotting of their sins and then sown in the earth to represent the nation that bears the fruit of the vineyard and that the principal interpretation of the tribes of Jacob in Isaiah 49:6 represents Ephraim.

 

In the original quote from Glenny, above, his second claim that, “the Church is not Israel nor does it replace Israel,” is caught in numerous quandaries, the greatest being the redemption of Israel commenced with the blotting of their sins by Christ. The overture of the kingdom of heaven was not an offer of the MK, but the offer to receive the redemption in Christ, which is the prelude to bringing the descendants of Israel back from being a “scattered nation amongst nations” (Dt 30:1-4; Isa 43:1, 5, 25; 51:5, 11, 14; Jer 31:2, 11; Hos 2:19, 23; Zec 10:7-9). The blotting of sin as a “once for all” first advent phenomenon and Christ’s declaration that he had not, “come to send peace on earth,” and that, “a man's foes shall be they of his own household,” establishes that the intent was to save Israel from their sins at the first advent and from their enemies at the second, which confirms PT where the prophets wrote in the eschatological context. An undeniable fallacy ensues in the Dispensationalist’s perception Christ offered the MK as it must have Christ come to establish peace and vanquish Israel’s enemies under the condition the shepherds ordained to doom avowed him. It cannot be held God ordain the reprobate shepherds to disavow Christ and at the same time perceive the consummation of the MK was contingent upon their avowal to accept Christ. As revealed above, even Scofield conceded the OT hid the two advents in the same context,35 which unintentionally intimates the bifurcation of Israel’s redemption and the Two House theological perception of Zechariah 10:7-9 and Hosea 2:19-23. Two House Theology perceives Hosea and Zechariah as affirming Ephraim is corporately redeemed and then sown in the earth, which conforms precisely to the NT when Ephraim is grasped as the nation bearing the fruit of the vineyard in Matthew 21:43. The perception Ephraim is the nation bearing the fruit of the vineyard in Matthew 21:43 destroys the reading of contingency concerning the parables of Matthew 13 (the Dispensationalist’s Parenthesis), but maintains the parables as expressing the sowing of Ephraim in the earth in agreement with Hosea 2:23 and Zechariah 10:8-9. The perception that the parables in Matthew 13 pertain to the sowing of Ephraim in the earth affirms the church is the undeniable vehicle, “to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel,” during the entire inter-advent dispensation and not just preceding the second advent as Dispensationalists perceive (Isa 49:6).

 

In typical Dispensationalist’s fashion, through context, Vlach attempts to connect the restoration of Israel in Isaiah 49 strictly to the second advent.

“The nation Israel cannot restore itself, for it is sinful. But the Servant—who is Jesus Christ, the true Servant of Israel—can restore the nation Israel and bring blessings for the nations. Thus, this passage teaches that Jesus will restore the nation Israel and bring light to the nations. He will also restore Israel to her land (Isa 49:8). The presence of the true Israelite, Jesus, does not mean that the people of Israel lose their significance.”36

Concerning Israel, Isaiah 49:8 states, “I will preserve thee, and… cause to inherit the desolate heritages,” which Vlach perceives as confined to the second advent. Yet, verse 6 affirms that the servant is not merely meant to restore the tribes of Jacob but is given as a, “a light to the Gentiles,” that he be God’s, “salvation unto the end of the earth,” which Paul states is the consequence of hardening of a faction of the biological descendants appointed to disavow Christ (the NIV provides a more contemporary translation).   

   “Again I ask: Did they stumble so as to fall beyond recovery? Not at all! Rather, because of their transgression, salvation has come to the Gentiles to make Israel envious.” Romans 11:11 NIV

The only valid perception of the text is that the builders were appointed to rejected Christ so as to sow the remnant in the earth, which results in salvation to the Gentiles, which is how Isaiah 49 must be perceived. Paul conveys two factions in Romans 11:11: the biological descendants that had stumbled on Christ (some recoverable and some doomed) and the Gentiles. But Paul had initially established another faction of the biological descendants that he perceived as, “a remnant according to the election of grace.” Romans 11:5. All three factions are present in Isaiah 49 when the “nation” that abhors the Servant, Christ, is grasped as Judah at the first advent, in contrast to Ephraim.

   “Thus saith the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel, and his Holy One, to him whom man despiseth, to him whom the nation abhorreth, to a servant of rulers, Kings shall see and arise, princes also shall worship, because of the LORD that is faithful, and the Holy One of Israel, and he shall choose thee.” Isaiah 49:7

The preserved of Israel who are restored in Isaiah 49:6 are the remnant according to the election of grace in Romans 11, while the “nation” that abhors the Servant, above, is Judah that remains recoverable according to Paul in Romans 11 and the prophets (Isa 11:12-13; Jer 23:5-6; Eze 37:21-22); the Gentiles are easily discernible. All three factions in Romans 11 are discernible in Isaiah 49. Zechariah 11, Ezekiel 34 and Micah 5 prophecy that the southern “nation” Judah would be exiled again and Isaiah prophesied the consequence would be salvation to the Gentiles. Darby and Scofield both unwittingly acknowledged Micah and Zechariah prophecy the “nation” that would abhor the Servant in Isaiah 49:7 was Judah at the first advent.37 In Isaiah Zion cries, “The LORD hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me,” which represents Ephraim (verse 14). Zion/Ephraim is seen by the prophet as, “desolate, a captive, and removing to and fro,” in exile until Zion begets children to replace the others she lost to her captors (verses 17-20), which corresponds to Hosea 2 and Zechariah 11 were Ephraim is redeemed, multiplied and then sown in the earth; the latter conveyed in Isaiah as the children declaring, “This place is too small for us; give us more space to live in.” Isaiah 49:20 NIV. This corresponds to the fulfillment of the promise of fecundity in Genesis 48:19, 49:22 and Zechariah 10:8-9, that the nation/tribe of Ephraim would, “become a multitude of nations.” The blotting of sin, “once for all”, redeems Ephraim/Zion and the fulfillment of the promise of fecundity is witnessed by the children who need space in Isaiah 49 and this parallels the, “wife of youth,” that was refused in Isaiah 54:6, who is prophesied to, “break forth on the right hand and on the left,” and inherit the Gentiles (verses 1-2). Paul cites Isaiah 54:1 in Galatians and connects the desolate “wife of youth that was refused” in Isaiah 54 with Jerusalem above, the mother of those who avow Christ, the Church, to include Jew and Gentile.

   “But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all. For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath an husband. Now we, brethren, as Isaac was, are the children of promise.” Galatians 4:26-28

Thomas Ice acknowledged that the “Jews” dwelling in Galatia (1 Pe 1:1) had been there since the Assyrian dispersion, which would include the northern tribes of Ephraim and not merely the “Jews”.

“It is clear, Peter, an apostle who was specifically called to minister to the Jews, is writing a letter to encourage Jewish believers who are in the diaspora. It makes no sense to speak of Gentile Christians as aliens living in Gentile nations. It makes good sense to speak of Jewish believers as aliens living in Gentile lands who had likely been there since their dispersion by the Assyrians and Babylonians.”38

Like most Dispensationalists, Ice fails to discern not all Israelites are “Jews” but his acknowledgment that those who Peter ministered to were descendants of the Assyrian dispersion unwittingly lends support to the perspective Paul’s connection of the “Jerusalem which is above” with the “wife of youth that was refused” in Isaiah 54 is not allegorical but fulfillment. In the first century the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus observed the ten tribes, “beyond Euphrates,” as, “an immense multitude, and not to be estimated by numbers.”39 It is this immense multitude that Peter ministered to and it is they that embody the desolate “wife of youth that was refused” in Isaiah 54, who through the Gospel would no longer be desolate but would bring forth the children in Isaiah 49, the preserved of Israel who are restored by the Servant, Christ.

 

Dispensationalist E. W. Bullinger, like Ice, conceded Paul addressed the Church in Galatians 4:26-28 but also omitted the historical-grammatical hermeneutic concerning the desolate, “wife of youth,” that was refused or divorced in Isaiah 54:6 as well as the relevant NT revelation.   

“Who can read Revelation 21: 10-17 without comparing its surpassing beauty and glory with Jerusalem which then was, or that now is? Those who ‘received the word’ proclaimed by Peter (Acts 2: 41; cp. 1 Thessalonians 2: 13), received it by faith, and with Abraham’s faith, were made blessedly free; and enjoying that wondrous liberty, they looked for ‘the city which hath the foundations,’ ‘Jerusalem which is above.’ Jerusalem below had shed the blood of the prophets, yea, the blood of Messiah; she was in bondage to the law with all her sons; but those who received and believed the word proved themselves the true sons of the father of the faithful and looked and longed for his heavenly city, “the new Jerusalem,” which the apostle could truly speak of as our mother.”40

Like Ice, Bullinger maintained Paul’s connection between the church and the desolate, “wife of youth,” that was refused in Isaiah 54 was analogous rather than fulfillment; his perception was an omission of the NT revelation that the blotting of sins of the elect of Israel also released them from the SC (Sinai Covenant) and made them eligible to enter into the NC.

   “Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth? For the woman which hath an husband is bound by the law to her husband so long as he liveth; but if the husband be dead, she is loosed from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband liveth, she be married to another man, she shall be called an adulteress: but if her husband be dead, she is free from that law; so that she is no adulteress, though she be married to another man. Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.” Romans 7:1-4

Effectively, Christ’s death, resurrection and exultation released the descendants of the nation of Judah from the marriage to the divine being under the Sinai Covenant and made them eligible to be married to Christ under the NC and in the case of the descendants of Ephraim, the unfaithful, divorced wife, Christ’s blotting of sin made them eligible to return to their husband without violating Deuteronomy 24:4, which was used by the prophets to idiomatically discern Ephraim from Judah. 

   “Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abmination before the LORD: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.” Deuteronomy 24:4

 

   “Thus saith the Lord, Where [is] the bill of your mother’s divorcement, whom I have put away? or which of my creditors [is it] to whom I have sold you? Behold, for your iniquities have ye sold yourselves, and for your transgressions is your mother put away.” Isaiah 50:1

 

   “They say, If a man put away his wife, and she go from him, and become another man’s, shall he return unto her again? shall not that land be greatly polluted? but thou hast played the harlot with many lovers; yet return again to me, saith the Lord.” Jeremiah 3:1

Consequently, the immense multitude that Peter engaged commenced the fulfillment of Isaiah 54 that they would bear a greater number of the elect sons and daughters of Israel than the wife that was married: Judah. Ephraim’s desolate phase represents the time in which God pronounced them corporately divorced, viewed in Hosea chapters 1 and 2 with 'No Pity' (Lo-Ruhamah) and 'Not My People' (Lo-Ammi), but Peter makes it clear that the reversal of their circumstance came with the laying of a chosen and precious cornerstone in Zion, Christ.

   “Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded… ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.” 1 Peter 2:6, 9-10

Peter affirms the laying of the cornerstone in Zion as coterminous with a people, a “holy nation” that in times past were pronounced with 'No Pity' (Lo-Ruhamah) and 'Not My People' (Lo-Ammi). The Gentiles simply cannot be construed as “a nation” that is times past were pronounced as such. In order to avoid conceding the Covenantalist’s perception the citation of Hosea 2:23 in 1 Peter 2:10 is to be read as the replacement of Israel with the Church, Ice maintains the texts pertains to an elect faction of Israel, as contrasted from those appointed to doom, to let them know that everything promised them in the Old Testament is being fulfilled through their faith in Jesus as their Messiah.”41 Yet, such a perception conveys the fulfillment of Hosea 2:23 as opposed to any allegorical reading. Ice unintentionally acknowledged Ephraim, as the unfaithful wife is returned to her first husband and the impediment of Deuteronomy 24:4 is taken away by the death, resurrection and exultation of Christ (Rom 7:1-4). Fidelity to the historical-grammatical hermeneutic requires the perception Peter’s citation of Hosea represents fulfillment and not allegory.

 

The historical-grammatical hermeneutic supports Ephraim as the “holy nation” in 1 Peter 2:9 and the Dispensationalists assertion the Church is not to be perceived as a nation but as a people of all nations exposes their perception as a fallacy. Commencing with the first century, every biological descendant of Ephraim, saved before the foundation of the world, and scattered throughout the world in the inter-advent dispensation shall avow Christ and fulfill the prophecy in Isaiah 54:3 that they would, “break forth on the right hand and on the left,” and that their “seed” would, “inherit the Gentiles.” Just as the “seed” in Galatians 3 verses 16 and 29 conveys the plural and the singular, the “seed in Isaiah 54:3 conveys both the plural for the nation of Ephraim and the singular for the Servant, Christ.  It also corresponds with the nomenclature “Israel” in Isaiah 49:3 that represents the plural members of the nation and the singular Servant, Christ, which even Dispensationalists concede. Dispensationalists fail to grasp Paul’s citation of Isaiah 54:1 in Galatians 4:27 pertains to Ephraim as they fail to grasp the historical evidence Christ inherited the Gentiles at the first advent that develops into a multitude of Christian nations, which fulfills Isaiah 54:3. At Christ’s return he inherits the Gentiles again witnessed in Psalms 2:8 and Revelation 11:15, which further substantiates PT in the eschatological context. The latter phenomenon accounts for, “the nations of them which are saved,” during the millennium in Matthew 25:31-34 and Revelation 21:24. Prior to the laying the chosen and precious cornerstone in Zion the cities populated by Ephraimites in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia are perceived by God as desolate in the sense of incapable of bringing forth elect sons and daughter, but following said phenomenon God peopled the desolate cities with the holy nation of Ephraim in fulfillment of Isaiah 54:3. This evidence and Ice’s inadvertent acknowledgement in his essay above supports the Two House perception that Genesis 48:19, Hosea 2:19:23 and Zechariah 10:7-9 commenced with the blotting of sin by Christ. The evidence up to this juncture substantiates the overture of the kingdom of heaven was not an announcement that the MK was at hand, but that multitude of nations that Christ would inherit during the inter-advent dispensation was at hand, which fulfills the aforesaid texts in Genesis, Hosea and Zechariah and sends salvation to the Gentiles and ends of the earth.

   “And when Joseph saw that his father laid his right hand upon the head of Ephraim, it displeased him: and he held up his father's hand, to remove it from Ephraim's head unto Manasseh's head. And Joseph said unto his father, Not so, my father: for this is the firstborn; put thy right hand upon his head. And his father refused, and said, I know it, my son, I know it: he also shall become a people, and he also shall be great: but truly his younger brother shall be greater than he, and his seed shall become a multitude of nations.” Genesis 48:17-19

 

   “And they of Ephraim shall be like a mighty man, and their heart shall rejoice as through wine: yea, their children shall see it, and be glad; their heart shall rejoice in the LORD I will hiss for them, and gather them; for I have redeemed them: and they shall increase as they have increased. And I will sow them among the people: and they shall remember me in far countries; and they shall live with their children, and turn again.” Zechariah 10:7-9

The parable of the prodigal son is undoubtedly correctly perceived by Two House theology as Ephraim returning to God, while the first born represents Judah

   “And he said, A certain man had two sons: And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living. And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him. And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father's have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants. And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.  Now his elder son was in the field: and as he came and drew nigh to the house, he heard musick and dancing. And he called one of the servants, and asked what these things meant. And he said unto him, Thy brother is come; and thy father hath killed the fatted calf, because he hath received him safe and sound. And he was angry, and would not go in: therefore came his father out, and intreated him. And he answering said to his father, Lo, these many years do I serve thee, neither transgressed I at any time thy commandment: and yet thou never gavest me a kid, that I might make merry with my friends: But as soon as this thy son was come, which hath devoured thy living with harlots, thou hast killed for him the fatted calf. And he said unto him, Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine. It was meet that we should make merry, and be glad: for this thy brother was dead, and is alive again; and was lost, and is found.” Luke 15:11-32

 

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1 Theopedia, “In libertarianism (not to be confused with the political ideology), free will is affected by human nature but man retains ability to choose contrary to his nature and desires. Man has the moral ability to turn to God in Christ and believe of his own "free will," apart from a divine, irresistible grace. Indeed, according to Open Theism, God is anxiously waiting to see what each person will do, for he cannot know ahead of time what the choice might be. Or, according to Arminianism, God chooses to save those whom he foresees will believe of their own free will.” (added emphasis) http://www.theopedia.com/free-will

2 Ibid., "Compatibilism, in contrast to Libertarian free will, teaches that people are free, but defines freedom differently... God is said to influence our desires, and thus is able to have exhaustive control of all that goes on.” http://www.theopedia.com/compatibilism

3 Thomas Ice, 1 Peter 2 and Replacement Theology, article posted by Pre-Trib Research Center, http://www.pre-trib.org/articles/view/1-peter-2-and-replacement-theology

4 Ibid.

5 Thomas R. Schreiner, Does Romans 9 Teach Individual Election Unto Salvation? Some Exegetical and Theological Reflections, JETS 36/1 (March 1993), pg. 38

6 Russell Moore, Is There a Future for Israel? (www.russellmoore.com/2009/01/09/is-there-a-future-for-israel), January 9, 2009

7 McMahon, C. Matthew, The Two Wills of God, Puritan Publications, 2005, pg. 282

8 R. Bruce Compton, Dispensationalism, the Church, and the New Covenant, DBSJ 8 (Fall 2003): 3–48, “Divine inspiration did not circumvent the human author’s intellect, but superintended the human author so that the words the human author understood and used communicated precisely what the divine author intended. This does not imply the human author shares in God’s omniscience or that the human author understood all the implications or significance of the text.”

9 Lewis Sperry Chafer, Dispensationalism, Taft Software, Inc. (July 24, 2008), Kindle location 193

10 Michael J. Vlach, The Kingdom Program in Matthew’s Gospel, www.TheologicalStudies.org

11 Dr. David R. Reagan, The Interpretation of Prophecy, Lamb & Lion Ministries website, http://christinprophecy.org/articles/the-interpretation-of-prophecy/, “Another peculiar feature of prophetic literature is called ‘telescoping’… The reason for it has to do with the perspective of the prophet. As he looks into the future and sees a series of prophetic events, they appear to him as if they are in immediate sequence. It is like looking down a mountain range and viewing three peaks, one behind the other, each sequentially higher than the one in front of it. The peaks look like they are right up against each other because the person viewing them cannot see the valleys that separate them.”

Shawn Brasseaux, Was John the Baptist Really Elijah?, “It appears that Malachi 4:5-6 has a dual application. Matthew and Luke say that it first refers to John the Baptist. About 400 years after Malachi wrote, John the Baptist came to introduce Jesus Christ’s First Coming.” https://forwhatsaiththescriptures.wordpress.com/2015/09/07/john-the-baptist-elijah/comment-page-1/

Jon Paulien, The End of Historicism? Reflections on the Adventist Approach to Biblical Apocalyptic—Part One, Journal of the Adventist Theological Society, 14/2 (Fall 2003): 15–43., 2003, “It was argued that general prophecy, because of its dual dimensions, may at times be susceptible to dual fulfillments or foci where local and contemporary perspectives are mixed with a universal, future perspective. Apocalyptic prophecy, on the other hand, does not deal so much with the local, contemporary situation as it does with the universal scope of the whole span of human history, including the major saving acts of God within that history.”

Walter C. Kaiser, The Promise of the Arrival of Elijah in Malachi and the Gospels, Grace Theological Journal 3.2 (1982) 221-33, “The emerging picture is clear. How can we disassociate Elijah who is to come from the day of the Lord? And how can we limit the day of the Lord entirely to the second advent and the parousia? Both errors will lead to a result less than what was intended by Malachi Elijah still must come and "restore all things" (Matt 17:11) "before the great and terrible day of the Lord comes" (Mal 4:5). Nevertheless, let no one say that Elijah has not already in some sense come, for our Lord will affirm the contrary: "Elijah has come."

12 Clarence Larkin, Dispensational Truth, Publishers Rev. Clarence Larkin, 1918, Ch. 28, “The writer to the Hebrews tells us that the "Types" are but the "SHADOW OF GOOD THINGS TO COME, AND NOT THE VERY IMAGE OF THE THING." Heb. 10:1. That is, the Old Testament "Types" are but "SHADOWS." But there cannot be a "shadow" without some "REAL THING" to make it. And a "shadow" is not the "very image of the thing,"for a shadow is out of proportion, and is an imperfect representation of the thing it reveals. So the Old Testament Types are "shadows" in the sense that they are not the "Real Thing," and are but imperfect revelations of it.”

13 Michael J. Vlach, The Kingdom Program in Matthew’s Gospel, www.TheologicalStudies.org

14 David L. Larsen, The Postmodern Abandonment of Israel, http://www.pre-trib.org/data/pdf/Larsen-ThePostmodernAbandon.pdf

15 See footnotes 3 and 4

16 Scofield’s reference notes, Malachi 3:1 quoted later in this work

17 Scofield’s reference notes, Matthew 17:10… “(2) But John the Baptist had come already, and with a ministry so completely in the spirit and power of Elijah's future ministry Luke 1:17 that in an adumbrative and typical sense it could be said: ‘Elias is come already.’ Cf; Matthew 10:40; Philemon 1:12; Philemon 1:17 where the same thought of identification, while yet preserving personal distinction, occurs. John 1:27”

Synopsis of the Books of the Bible by John Nelson Darby, Matthew 17, “But even as Jesus manifested all the power of the Messiah, all His rights to everything that belonged to that Messiah, without assuming as yet the outward glory, His time not being come John 7), so John fulfilled morally and in power the mission of Elias to prepare the way of the Lord before Him (according to the we character of His coming, as then accomplished), and answered literally to Isaiah 40, and even to Malachi 3, the only passages applied to him. This is the reason that John said he was not Elias, and that the Lord said, "If ye can receive it, this is Elias which was for to come." Therefore also John never applied Malachi 4:5, 6 to himself; but he announces himself as fulfilling Isaiah 40:3-5, and this in each of the Gospels, whatever may be its particular character. [4]

18 Scofield’s reference notes, Malachi 3:1

19 Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., The Davidic Promise and the Inclusion of the Gentiles, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, Volume 20:2

20 Les Feldick, Through the Bible with Les Feldick, Les Feldick Ministries on Smashwords, 2015, Book 76, "Amos 9:9 – 10 “For, lo, I will command, and I will sift the house of Israel among all nations, (That’s why they’ve been out in dispersion.) like as corn (or grain) is sifted in a sieve, yet shall not the least grain fall upon the earth... In other words, they rebel against all of God’s overtures. But now verse 11—after all the chastisements, after the horrors of the tribulation are past, here comes the promise. And this is what James quoted... “In that day (When God is ready to come back and finish His work with Israel.) will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old... And then you come down to the verses at the end of the chapter. We might as well read them, because this is Israel’s future. Don’t you ever let somebody tell you that God is through with Israel. No, He is not. Their blessings are coming—the greatest they’ve ever had. But it won’t be until the Church is complete and we’re out of the way."

21 W. Edward Glenny, Gentiles and the People of God: A Study of Apostolic Hermeneutics and Theology in Acts 15, http://ntresources.com/blog/documents/Amos9inActs15b.pdf, “Strauss’ arguments are supported by the context of Acts 15, the OT context in Amos 9, and the theology of Luke-Acts; his conclusion is worth quoting: ‘The restoration of the Davidic reign predicted in Amos 9:11-12 and accomplished in the resurrection-ascension of Jesus is presented by James as scriptural justification for the Gentile mission and as the means by with “the rest of mankind” may seek the Lord.’”

22 R. Bruce Compton, Dispensationalism, the Church, and the New Covenant, DBSJ 8 (Fall 2003): 3–48, “The problem with seeing the fulfillment of any of the new covenant promises in the present era with the church is that those promises without exception occur in the Old Testament in eschatological contexts. As was argued above in the survey of the new covenant in the Old Testament, the new covenant promises are all given in connection with the Lord’s coming to gather the Jews from the lands in which they have been dispersed, reconstituting them as a nation, and restoring them to their geographical homeland.”

23 W. Edward Glenny, The Septuagint and Apostolic Hermeneutics: Amos 9 in Acts 15, Bulletin for Biblical Research 22 1 (2012) 1-26, pg. 4-5, fn. 12, “It is worth noting that [Amos] 9 9b in the LXX is not a message of judgment as in the MT (where Israel will be ‘sifted’ and none will escape) Instead, the last clause of 9 9 is ‘a confident oracle of salvation’ that destruction will never again fall on the land to afflict it and its inhabitants. After the time of exile and punishment, the Lord promises the true remnant of Israel a new era of freedom and peaceful occupation of the land, there will be no more destruction and punishment (Jennifer Mary Dines, The Septuagint of Amos A Study in Interpretation [Ph D thesis, University of London, 1991], 289)” (emphasis added)

Les Feldick, Through the Bible with Les Feldick, Les Feldick Ministries on Smashwords, 2015, Book 16, “Not a single Jew that is intended to go into the Kingdom will be lost. Turn back to Ezekiel 37... that's a picture of the Nation of Israel coming back out of their dispersion... But, as yet, the breath hasn't been breathed into them, they are still spiritually dead.... Amos 9: 9... Not a kernel of what God wants to keep will be lost... not a single Jew that God has ordained to go into that Kingdom is going to miss it.”

24 Synopsis of the Books of the Bible by John Nelson Darby, Hebrew 10, But there is another element, already pointed out in this offering, the force of which the epistle here applies to believers, namely, that the offering is "once for all." It admits of no repetition. If we enjoy the effect of this offering, our sanctification is eternal in its nature. It does not fail. It is never repeated. We belong to God for ever according to the efficacy of this offering.... Their sins have been imputed to Christ. But He is now in heaven-a proof that the sins are blotted out for ever.”

Charles Caldwell Ryrie, The Ryrie Study Bible, Moody Press, 1976, pg. 1741, HEBREWS, “10:1-39 In this chapter the author emphasizes the finality of Christ's sacrifice by contrasting it with the lack of finality of the O.T. system of law and sacrifices. Christ's redemption needs no repetition and no supplementation. Therefore, a rejection of His sacrifice is final and unforgivable.”

25 The Calvinists perception of a limited atonement does not impede the argument that the blotting of sin occurred for at least all the elect at the first advent, which acknowledges individual and corporate correspondence concerning election. 

26In a frenzy to support the NC in Jeremiah 31 does not come into effect until the second advent 26 Dispensationalists cite Romans 11:27b and Acts 3:19 as evidence corporate Israel’s sins are blotted at the second advent, in conflict with Darby and Ryrie who are correct on this issue; a witness to the confusion in Dispensationalism. As mentioned in the essay on the insufficient presuppositions of Dispensationalism, Romans 11:27b is a conflation of Isaiah 59:20-21 and 27:9, which conveys the salvation depicted in Romans is not from sin but from the enemies of Israel. Acts 3:19 simply conveys that Israelites must avow Christ in order to receive the accomplished gift of the blotting of their sins and the refreshing presence of the Holy Spirit of the LORD (Jn 14:23).      

27 Thomas Ice, 1 Peter 2 and Replacement Theology, article posted by Pre-Trib Research Center, http://www.pre-trib.org/articles/view/1-peter-2-and-replacement-theology, “However, since Peter is writing to ‘the Israel of God’ or Jewish believers, he is listing these Old Testament descriptions of Israel to let them know that everything promised them in the Old Testament is being fulfilled through their faith in Jesus as their Messiah. This is juxtaposed by a comparison with unbelieving Jews who have not trusted Jesus as the Messiah of Israel in verses 7–8. Peter speaks of “the stone which the builders rejected” (2:7) as a likely reference to Jewish leadership that lead the nation to reject Jesus as the Messiah. Peter further describes Jewish unbelievers as ones that view Jesus as “a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense” (2:8a). He notes that these Jewish unbelievers “stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed” (2:8b).”

28 Clarence Larkin, Dispensation Truth, Rough Draft Printing (December 25, 2015), The Old Testament prophet saw the future as separate peaks of one mountain. He did not see that these peaks assembled themselves in groups with the valley the “VALLEY-OF THE CHURCH,” between. In the second group is “Antichrist,” the “Revelation of Christ,” and the “Kingship of Christ.” The Prophet Isaiah (Isa 61:1-2) did not see that “comma” in the second verse, that separated between the statement—“THE ACCEPTABLE YEAR OF THE LORD,” and “THE DAY OF VENGENCE OF OUR GOD,” was to span a period covering the whole of this “present Dispensation,” and already over 1900 years long. Likewise the Prophet Jeremiah (Jer 23:5-6) separates with a “comma” the First and Second Advents, or between “THE RIGHTEOUS BRANCH,” and the “KING WHO SHALL REIGN AND PROSPER.” The Prophets saw the “Prophetic” and “Kingly” work of Christ, but they did not see the “PRIESTLY” …. All we have to do is to separate the prophecies of the “First Advent” from the prophetic references to Christ in the Old Testament, and apply the balance to His “Second Advent.” This simplifies the study of Prophecy.”  

29 See fn. 21

30 W. Edward Glenny, Gentiles and the People of God: A Study of Apostolic Hermeneutics and Theology in Acts 15, Dispensational Study Group, National ETS Meeting, November, 2006

31 Michael J. Vlach, Ph.D., What Does Christ As “True Israel” Mean For the Nation of Israel?, MSJ 23/1 (Spring 2012) 43–54

32 Tony Garland, A Testimony of Jesus Christ: A Commentary on the Book of Revelation, revelation-19-10, http://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/revelation/revelation-19/revelation-19-10.html

33 Baker’s Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology, Baker Books, 1996, “Angel of the Lord… The connection between the angel of the Lord and the preincarnate appearance of the Messiah cannot be denied. Manoah meets the angel of the Lord, and declares that he has seen God. The angel accepts worship from Manoah and his wife as no mere angel, and refers to himself as "Wonderful," the same term applied to the coming deliverer in Isaiah 9:6 (Jud 13:9-22). The functions of the angel of the Lord in the Old Testament prefigure the reconciling ministry of Jesus. In the New Testament, there is no mention of the angel of the Lord; the Messiah himself is this person.”

34 Synopsis of the Books of the Bible by John Nelson Darby, EZEKIEL 37, “The result of this intervention of God is that the dispersed of Israel, hitherto divided into two peoples, are gathered together in the earth, reunited under one Head, as one nation. It is the resurrection of the nation, which was really dead and buried. But God opens their graves, and places them again in their land restored to life as a nation.”

Scofield’s reference notes, EZEKIEL 37, “The symbol follows. The two sticks are Judah and the ten tribes; united, they are one nation (Ezekiel 37:19-21). Then follows (Ezekiel 37:21-27) the plain declaration as to Jehovah's purpose, and Ezekiel 37:28 implies that then Jehovah will become known to the Gentiles in a marked way. This is also the order of Acts 15:16; Acts 15:17 and the two passages strongly indicate the time of full Gentile conversion. See also Isaiah 11:10

35 See footnote 18

36 Michael J. Vlach, Ph.D., What Does Christ As “True Israel” Mean For the Nation of Israel?, MSJ 23/1 (Spring 2012) 43–54

37 Synopsis of the Books of the Bible by John Nelson Darby, ZECHARIAH 11… “But the shepherds of Israel are cut off; and Christ, grieved with the wicked and corrupt people, Himself abhorred by them, leaves them to themselves and to the consequences of their behaviour.”

Scofield’s reference notes, ZECHARIAH 11:7… “The scene belongs to the first advent…

 Zechariah 11:13. "Beauty" (i.e. graciousness) was "cut in sunder" (Zechariah 8:10; Zechariah 8:11), signifying that Judah was abandoned to the destruction foretold in Zechariah 11:1-6 and fulfilled A.D. 70. After the betrayal of the Lord for thirty pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12; Zechariah 11:13) "Bands" (i.e. union) was broken (Zechariah 11:14), signifying the abandonment, for the time, of the purpose to reunite Judah and Israel.”

 Scofield’s reference notes, Micah 5:3… “The meaning of Micah 5:3 is that, from the rejection of Christ at His first coming Jehovah will give Israel up till the believing remnant appears; then He stands and feeds in His proper strength as Jehovah (Micah 5:4); He is the defence of His people as in Micah 4:3; Micah 4:11-13 and afterward the remnant go as missionaries to Israel and to all the world.; Micah 5:7; Micah 5:8; Zechariah 8:23.”  

38 See footnote 3

39 Flavius Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews - Book XI Ch. 5

40 E W Bullinger, The Foundations of Dispensational Truth, The Open Bible Trust, Kindle Edition

41 See footnote 3