On April 22, 2003 on the MSNBC program Scarborough Country, Joe Scarborough interviewed Jerry Falwell. Falwell stated that the reason America won the war in Iraq is because America is the ally of Israel. Since Israel is God’s chosen people, Falwell argued, those who bless Israel today are blessed. He went on to argue that America must, at all costs, continue to support Israel, or America will stop being blessed by God.
On program after program, the televangelists such as Jack Van Impe, John Hagee, Hal Lindsay and others continue to proclaim that Israel is God’s chosen people, and that America must continue to support her, no matter what. The truth of the matter is that the people calling themselves Israel today are not the Israel of the Bible.
Consider the doctrine of circumcision.
Circumcision was the sign of God’s covenant with Abraham. Without it, a person was not considered part of the people. The failure or refusal to be circumcised would result in being "cut off from the people" which meant at the least banishment, and at the worst, death (Genesis 17:12f). No circumcision, no identity as the chosen people.
If you were not circumcised, you had no right to the land. Israel could not even enter her inheritance, in the time of the conquest, because the men were uncircumcised (Joshua 5). Thus, no circumcision, no land promise.
If you were not circumcised, you could not enter the Temple at Jerusalem. At the Temple, signs warned all Gentiles that entrance beyond a certain point would result in death. When the Jews thought Paul had taken an uncircumcised man, Trophimus, beyond that point, they tried to kill Paul. Thus, no circumcision, no right to worship God.
Clearly, circumcision delineated Israel from the other nations. It designated them as Abraham’s seed, and thus, God’s chosen people. The question is, how does God view circumcision today?
Paul said, "Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything," "This I say, that if any man is circumcised, he is a debtor to keep the whole law," "If any man is circumcised, Christ shall profit him nothing," "If any of you seek to be justified by the Law (the law of circumcision, DKP") "you are fallen from grace." (Galatians 5). Now it must be remembered that no one preached the "hope of Israel" more than Paul (Acts 28:16f), yet the apostle had come to know that the physical things of Abraham had now been fulfilled in the spiritual body of Christ, and the physical things had now passed. The shadow had given way to the body!
In spite of this, we are told that Israel remains God’s chosen people and that circumcision will be restored in the millennium, along with the Jew and Gentile distinction inherent in circumcision, the Temple, etc.. If that is true, what happens to the gospel? The gospel says physical circumcision is no longer valid or meaningful, but spiritual circumcision of the heart is demanded (Colossians 2:11-13). So, I ask again, what happens to the blood-bought gospel of Jesus if circumcision is restored? Jesus said his gospel will never pass away (Matthew 24:35). If the gospel will never pass, and if the gospel says circumcision is invalid, then Israel is no longer the chosen people of God.
In my book, Israel, 1948: Countdown to Nowhere, I discuss the issue of circumcision and how important it is to the modern issue of Israel and the identity of God’s people.
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