© 1 July 2016 Revive Israel Ministries
How to “Connect” with Israel? (Part 2)
In Part I, we learned that according to the Bible, “Israel” can mean: a) the physical descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob--the Jewish people b) the Jewish nation in its Land, and c) the Remnant of believers in Yeshua—Jew & Gentile together.
The Olive Tree metaphor of Romans 11 demands that Christians see themselves as “grafted in” (covenantally connected) to Israel in a way that reflects the fullness of all 3 dimensions of Biblical Israel. This is God’s formula for bringing about the “fullness of the gentiles/nations,” “all Israel being saved,” and the 2nd Coming of Yeshua. (Rom 11:25-26)
Before we study what this full “grafting in” might look like in our day, I want to look at how Christians have been connecting to Israel in ways that are good, but stop short of the fullness that we are seeking.
1) A + B, without C—Connecting with Israel or the Jewish
people OUTSIDE of Gospel faith
Romans 9:6 and 11:17-18 tell us that not all of Israel is fully Israel. If one’s primary mode of connecting, of grafting into the Olive Tree, is through the unsaved Jewish majority, then one is essentially grafting to branches which are (at least at this stage) cut off from the tree! That’s not a good formula for “partaking with them of the rich root of the olive tree!!” It’s impossible to take blessing and nourishment from the root if your grafting into branches that aren’t even connected to the tree! This error was quite forgivable a generation ago, when the believing remnant in Israel was so tiny as to be practically invisible, but today the Jewish nation is experiencing a spiritual restoration and a growing, maturing remnant of the faithful in Yeshua. It’s time for the fullness of the Olive Tree grafting relationship!
2) Jewish/Hebrew “roots” Torah teaching
The Olive Tree of Romans 11 is a “people tree,” not a “Torah teaching/doctrine” tree. According to Paul, the root of the tree (God’s covenant people) is to be identified more with the Abrahamic covenant of faith and promise, than with the later Torah-based religious practices that came to define the boundaries of Jewish identity (Gal 4-5; Rom 10:4). In context, Paul’s whole point is about the right relationship with other peoples in the tree—not with observing Sabbaths or Feasts.
This “tree” of the people of God is also like a rainbow, demonstrating an incredible variety of the unique cultures and identities of the nations, whom John could visibly recognize in his vision. (Rev 7:9) This mistaken way of “connecting” or “grafting” with Israel through Jewish roots teaching, can actually be a great deception: one may find himself with a supposedly “Jewish,” or “Biblical” way of living and practicing his faith, but without any of the Biblical connections with Israel—neither A, B nor C! In the end, according to our experience, this can lead to a very unhealthy focus on the details of one’s own religious practice, identity and even the deception of thinking that you have Jewish or Israelite “blood.” (Rev 3:9)
More Translators Needed
Over the last two months we have had people from nine different languages respond to our invitation to join our media team in adding subtitles to our videos. This is exciting and we are so grateful for how God is connecting Jew and Gentile together to see the word of the Lord go out from Jerusalem! Our goal is to raise up teams of translators in all the 16 languages we currently have for our weekly email update. These are the languages we still need:
Do you have skill in translation and a desire to see our video's in your language? Join our family of translators. Write firstname.lastname@example.org for info.
Receiving the Love of the Father
Message from Asher Intrater from the recent Israel Intensive hosted by IHOPKC. To watch in English, click HERE!
Meet the Team: Jeremiah
This week meet the Revive Israel team manager, Jeremiah Smilovici.
Subtitles available in French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, and Danish. To watch, click HERE!