EINDDINGE: DIE TOEKOMS VAN ISRAEL ?
Met president Trump se aankondiging dat die VSA Jerusalem (nou amptelik, nadat dit 20 jaar gelede reeds besluit is deur die VSA se senaat) as die hoofstad van Israel erken, het dit die belangstelling vir die plek en rol van Israel in die Here se Koninkryk weer sterk laat begin opleef. Daar word meer gevra: wat ‘profeteer’ die Heilige Skrif oor Israel se toekoms ?
Daar is baie sienings onder Christene, van een uiterste na die ander, afhangende vanuit watter eskatologiese (leer oor die einddinge of eindtye) oogpunt mens na die gebeure in die geskiedenis kyk, veral vandat Israel weer ‘n politieke staat geword het in 1948.
Dan is daar ook kultiese en sektariese groepe soos die Brits-Israel bewegings en die Hebrew Roots Movement wat almal ook nog hul verskillende Israelvisies het, soos ek hier in ‘n artikel daaroor geskryf het, verwysende na ‘n boek wat geskryf is oor ‘Israelvisies’ deur die geskiedenis, “Israelvisies in beweging” (sien gerus hierdie skakel vir heelwat verwysings na verskillende gereformeerde bronne oor denke oor Israel).
Ek plaas graag hier onder ‘n paar artikels, geskryf vanuit gereformeerde oogpunt, oor die toekoms van Israel, om gereformeerde gelowiges te help besin en dink oor die onderwerp in die lig van die Skrif. Die artikels is almal voor pres. Trump se afkondiging geskryf, maar die inligting en onderwerp is nog netso aktueel. Baie belangrik is wat een skrywer hier onder sê, wat baie (veral 20/21ste eeuse gereformeerdes) nie besef nie:
“… a future salvation for ethnic or national Israel was not “invented by 19th Century Dispensationalism”! I fear there is much ignorance among 20th century Reformed brethren who may be surprised to find such a mainstream view among some of the great heroes of their faith tradition.”
Ek beplan om in ‘n volgende skrywe ook ‘n paar sienings oor Israel deur te gee van ‘n paar Afrikaanse gereformeerde teoloë, oor hoe hul dink aangaande die toekoms van Israel.
Maar hier is solank vier artikels:
i. A Historical & Political Perspective
ii. A Biblical Theological Perspective
“I don’t want to show any disrespect for Western political leaders. They need our prayers and cooperation in these difficult times. Unfortunately, they don’t seem to understand the true nature of Islam when they launch their initiatives for solving problems between Islamic countries and their neighbors. They either ignore, or are unaware of the fact that Islam is far more than a religious faith; it is a complete worldview with global aspirations and pretensions. If the West, during the last three centuries, succeeded in separating church and state, this has not happened in Daru’l Islam. The opposition to the existence of Israel is a religious matter for Muslims, and therefore cannot be negotiated.”
“It would be wrong for Christians, who believe in the supreme and final authority of the Word of God, to regard the Problem of Israel simply from a political and historical point of view. For example, in his Letter to the Romans, Paul devoted Chapters 9, 10, and 11, to a treatment of this problem within God’s plan of salvation. Quite often, we neglect to comment on these chapters, leaving the field to the Dispensational school of hermeneutics (principles of interpretation.) According to this school, the birth of the State of Israel was a fulfillment of Biblical prophecy.
“On the other hand, Christians who subscribe to the Historical-Grammatical school of hermeneutics, deny that the emergence of Israel as an independent state took place as a fulfillment of some Biblical prophecies. Our disagreement with our Dispensational brothers and sisters should not imply that we neglect the problem of Israel, from a Biblical and theological perspective. I use the term “Israel” here as a reference to God’s Old Testament people. I would like to quote from Professor John Murray’s commentary … on Romans …”
Lees die volledige artikel hier verder.
Wat ds. Madany se artikel belangrik maak, is dat hy vanuit ‘n gereformeerde agtergrond skryf, in die Midde-Ooste gebore is, tans sendingwerk doen daar, veral onder Moslems, en, dat hy na Israel kyk vanuit beide ‘n polities-historiese en bybels-teologiese perspektief, ‘n balans wat baie mense mis in hul beoordeling van die stryd in die Midde-Ooste.
compiled by Phil Layton
Outside of dispensationalism or any particular theological position or system, some of the greatest theologians of the past have studied OT and/or NT prophecies (notably Romans 9-11) and concluded God is not through with the Jews and has a plan for them in the future as distinct from the church. While many would consider the church “spiritual Israel,” that did not mean God was done with national Israel, and many even believed God would someday restore them to spiritual Israel even in the land of Israel.
Amillenialist Sam Waldron admits the following from Reformation period on (vor.org): ‘Millennial expectations of both the premillennial and postmillennial variety gradually grew up in the general context of the Puritan movement centered in the British Isles.
Iain Murray [Reformed historian, also not premillenial] in a fascinating chapter found in his Puritan Hope carefully traces the development of these expectations. The development begins, he asserts, with the teaching of the restoration or future conversion of the Jews by two progenitors of the Reformed movement in Britain. One of the first developments in thought on prophecy came as further attention was given to the Scriptures bearing on the future of the Jews. … notably Martin Bucer and Peter Martyr, who taught at Cambridge and Oxford respectively in the reign of Edward VI, did understand the Bible to teach a future calling of the Jews. In this view they were followed by Theodore Beza, Calvin’s successor at Geneva. As early as 1560, four years before Calvin’s death, the English and Scots refugee Protestant leaders who produced the Geneva Bible, express this belief in their marginal notes on Romans chapter 11, verses 15 and 26. On the latter verse they comment, `He sheweth that the time shall come that the whole nation of the jews, though not everyone particularly, shall be joined to the church of Christ.’ ”
“The previous 12 pages of quotes from non-dispensational writers should be more than sufficient to show that a future salvation for ethnic or national Israel was not “invented by 19th Century Dispensationalism”! I fear there is much ignorance among 20th century Reformed brethren who may be surprised to find such a mainstream view among some of the great heroes of their faith tradition. I believe futuristic premillennialism does best justice to the biblical evidence, however I hope that even my amillennial and postmillennial brethren will consider recovering their position’s past emphasis on Israel’s future, as this is arguably one of the most important issues of eschatology, if not the most critical, because God’s Word and promises are at stake. Of course, no matter what theologians we can find on our side, the Reformation motto and ultimate authority is sola scriptura – Scripture alone (Zechariah 12-14, Ezekiel 36-39, & Rom. 9-11).”
Lees die volledige artikel hier verder.
“A careful study of the New Testament reveals that both of these interpretations of the relationship between Israel and the church are wanting. The relationship between the people of God in the Old Testament and the people of God in the New Testament is better described in terms of an organic development rather than either separation or replacement. During most of the Old Testament era, there were essentially three groups of people: the Gentile nations, national Israel, and true Israel (the faithful remnant).
Although the nation of Israel was often involved in idolatry, apostasy, and rebellion, God always kept for Himself a faithful remnant—those who trusted in Him and who would not bow the knee to Baal (1 Kings 19:18). This remnant, this true Israel, included men such as David, Joash, Isaiah, and Daniel, as well as women such as Sarah, Deborah, and Hannah. There were those who were circumcised in the flesh and a smaller number who had their hearts circumcised as well. So, even in the Old Testament, not all were Israel who were descended from Israel (Rom. 9:6).”
“Paul’s teaching in verses 25–27 has been at the center of the debate concerning the proper interpretation of chapter 11. Paul writes in verse 25: “Lest you be wise in your own conceits, I want you to understand this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in.” Here Paul is still speaking directly to the Gentiles (see v. 13). He wants them to understand a “mystery.” In this context, the mystery involves the reversal of Jewish expectations concerning the sequence of end-time events. The “mystery” is that the restoration of Israel follows the salvation of the Gentiles.
In verse 26, Paul continues the sentence begun in verse 25: “And in this way all Israel will be saved.” The biggest debate here is the meaning of “all Israel.” Charles Cranfield lists the four main views that have been suggested: (1) all the elect, both Jews and Gentiles; (2) all the elect of the nation Israel; (3) the whole nation Israel, including every individual member; and (4) the nation Israel as a whole, but not necessarily including every individual member. Since Paul repeatedly denies the salvation of every single Israelite, we can set aside option (3).”
Lees die volledige artikel hier verder.
“Talk of eschatology in evangelical circles today will inevitably come around to the issue of God’s plans for ethnic Israel (the Jews). Special reference is often made to the nation of Israel in prophecy. One of the most popular preachers in southern California proclaimed in 1980 that anybody who was not aware that Jesus must – given the recent history of the nation of Israel – be returning soon very likely did not truly know Him in a saving fashion. For this preacher the Jews had such an obvious place in the Bible’s end-time plans that only those with sin-blinded eyes could fail to see the signs of the times. He was a Christian Zionist who had made a sizable financial contribution to the nation of Israel and predicted that Jesus would return prior to the end of 1982. His millennial position was conspicuously dispensational premillennial.
People of Reformed convictions in theology have often reacted to such extreme displays and declarations about Israel’s future by utterly repudiating any place in God’s revealed plans for the Jews. One well known and prolific writer in the Reformed world has addressed the subject of Israel in prophecy, only to conclude that (in effect) Israel is no longer in prophecy at all. There is no distinctive future for ethnic Israel (the Jews) according to him. And he cannot resist reminding his readers that the Jews were the ones who killed Jesus. All prophecies, he contends, which once pertained to Israel now apply exclusively to the church. His millennial position is outspokenly amillennial.
Where would a postmillennialist stand on the question of Israel’s future? Well, in a sense, there is no “official” (or standard) postmillennial answer to that question because one’s response will be determined by his interpretation of various Biblical passages (notably, Romans 9-11) = and not all postmillennialists understand those particular passages in exactly the same way. Nevertheless, a large number of people who believe that the Bible teaches the prosperity of the gospel and visible success of Christ’s advancing kingdom on earth – that is, a large number of Biblical postmillennialists – have found Scriptural support for their eschatological hopes in what God has said about the future of Israel. They have not understood that future, however, to be anything like the Zionist or nationalistic prospects favored by dispensationalism.”
“As we survey the Biblical material which we have covered in this discussion, what summary concerning the place of Israel in Biblical prophecy would be appropriate? The following truths stand out:
- The promises to Abraham and to the nation of Israel in the Old Testament were all pledged in and through Christ for God’s true people.
- The greater attention and care which God gave to the nation of Israel throughout the Old Testament increased Israel’s culpability for breaking the covenant and rejecting the Messiah.
- Israel as a nation and the ethnic Jews as a race have been rejected by God, so that they no longer constitute His kingdom or chosen people.
- The church of Jesus Christ (Gentile and Jew) is now the kingdom of God, the people of God’s own possession, and as such inherits the promised blessings to Abraham and to Israel.
- This fact indicates glorious days for the gospel throughout future history, for the seed of Abraham (true believers) must grow to an overwhelming numerical size and bless all nations.
- The mass conversion of Gentiles in the world will provoke the Jews to jealousy and bring them to a mass conversion of their own to Jesus Christ. This has nothing per se to do with Palestine or a national body, and it does not indicate that the Jews will have any blessing from God apart from the church of Jesus Christ and submission to the gospel (in the same way as the Gentiles).
- When the world sees “all Israel” become saved in this way, there will be further and greater blessings from God upon the whole Gentile population since Christ will be internationally exalted among men.
Lees die volledige artikel hier verder.
In die volgende skrywe sal ek dan ‘n paar sienings deurgee van ‘n paar gereformeerde Afrikaanse teoloë oor Israel se toekoms.