ISRAEL IN THE NEW TESTAMENT
Pastor Bertrand L. Comparet
It is impossible to truly understand the Bible, or any part of it, without understanding that the Anglo-Saxon, Germanic and Scandinavian people of today are the ISRAEL of the Bible. The Bible speaks always and only to ISRAEL. To claim its benefits for yourself, you must start by putting yourself in the ranks of ISRAEL. Even the major churches show some dim awareness of this fact although, they won't admit it.
For example, the Episcopal Church won't admit that we are Israel but read their Book of Common Prayer. Throughout this book it always speaks from the standpoint of Israel. To get out of the embarrassment of this inconsistency, most churches teach substantially this: "Although God's promises to Israel were absolute and unconditional, God welched on those promises and has given them to the church instead", although they don't express this quite so frankly. If their doctrine were true, they wouldn't have much of a religion. If Israel couldn't trust God's word, who else could? But, it is NOT TRUE, God never welched on a promise. Every promise He ever made to Israel, He has fulfilled and is today fulfilling to Israel and to no one else.
Then the churches say, "Well, we are only Gentiles, but we have become spiritual Israel." Now that is a most remarkable statement. The people of Israel were never, at any time, a group of people who all held the same religious belief. At the best, there were always many apostates and idolaters among them. During much of their history, nearly the entire nation became apostates. The great prophet Elijah found that in the whole nation of Israel there remained only 7,000 men still loyal to God. But, the Bible never says they ceased to be Israel, when it was denouncing them for their apostasy. Israel always was purely a racial group, all of the same race, despite the apostasy of some of them from the true religion. Therefore, the only way anyone could become a "spiritual Israelite" would have to be the same process by which he could become a "spiritual negro" or a "spiritual Mongolian", something no one could ever do. You can be an Israelite only by birth, by inheritance.
In many previous broadcasts, I have presented the evidence that the Israelites exist today under the name of the Anglo-Saxon, Scandinavian and Germanic people and that God's promises to Israel have been actually fulfilled to them. But many churches teach that the New Testament has done away with all of this, that it threw all of God's promises and prophecies about Israel into the rubbish can and started a new religion with Israel left out of it. This is positively not true, the whole Bible is consistent from beginning to end. I have often told you that there is as much Christianity in the Old Testament as in the New, though it is harder to understand because it is presented in the forms of prophecy, ritual and symbols. Now, I want to show you that the New Testament, like the Old, is an ISRAEL book.
The four Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John deal with the life and ministry of our Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus taught always the truths pertaining to Israel. In Mark 12:28-29, a scribe asked Jesus which was the greatest commandment of all. We read, "Jesus answered him 'The first of all the commandments is, Hear O ISRAEL, the Lord our God is one Lord.'"
Jesus regarded His whole ministry as being primarily to Israel. In Matthew 15:24, Jesus said "I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the House of ISRAEL." Again , when Jesus sent out His 12 disciples to teach the people, we read in Matthew 10:5-6, "These 12 Jesus sent forth and commanded them saying, 'Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: but go rather to the lost sheep of the House of ISRAEL.'"
Again in Matthew 19:27-28, Peter asked Jesus what reward would be given to those who had given up all to follow Him and Jesus replied to Peter, "Verily I say unto you, that ye which have followed Me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man shall sit on the throne of His glory, ye also shall sit upon 12 thrones judging the 12 Tribes of ISRAEL." Note that carefully. He didn't say that they would become heads of the Methodist, Episcopal and Baptist churches, but that they would become rulers and judges over the 12 Tribes of ISRAEL. This is not something of the past which God had to discard as a failure. This is Jesus Christ's prophecy of what was so eternally true that it would still be in effect in the Millennium when He comes back to rule the earth in person. Also, many of the parables used by Jesus Christ concerned Israel, so Jesus Christ testified in the Gospels.
Surely, no other authority as great as that of Jesus Christ can be found, to testify what is truly Christian. Yet, there are still many people who mistakenly believe that the Apostle Paul changed all of this, threw out not only all of the Old Testament but also the teachings of Jesus Christ and set up a new religion. Paul would be the last person in the world to try such a thing! Paul makes it clear, in nearly every Epistle he wrote, that he is writing TO and ABOUT ISRAEL. Although some of this has been hidden by mistranslation in the King James version of the Bible. Let's review some of them.
First, let's take the so called Epistle to the Romans. To whom does Paul address it? Romans 1:7 shows that it is addressed to those persons in Rome who are "called saints". Yes, I know that your King James version says "called TO BE saints." But, you will notice that the words "to be" are in italic type, which shows that these two words were not in the original writing, but that the translators added them in order to make it correspond with what the translators thought Paul should have said. But let's take Paul at his own word, what he actually did write instead of what somebody else substituted for it.
Remember that Paul was a very well educated man who knew the Scriptures well. Paul knew that a "saint" was not somebody who would be named such by the church in the dark ages several centuries after Paul wrote, because the so called "saint" had done some deed of piety. Do you know who ALL of the saints are? Paul knew for he knew the Psalms. In the first place, what does "saint" mean? It means "set apart or consecrated to the service of God". It is used in the Bible almost exclusively of people as members of a class, rather than as of individuals. It is used to describe the status of God's people ISRAEL. Therefore Psalm 148:14 tells us who ALL of God's saints are. Not just some of them but ALL of them. It says, "He also exalteth the horn of His people, the praise of ALL HIS SAINTS, even of the Children of Israel, a people near unto Him." Paul knew them, so when he addressed any of his epistles to "saints", you know that Paul was writing to Israelites.
So in the Epistle to the Romans, as it is wrongly named in your Bible (for Paul didn't call it that, but the translators did), in this book Paul says he is writing "To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called saints." Since ALL of the saints are Israelites according to the Bible, which Paul knew very well, we know that he was not writing to just Romans in general.
Nero, for example, was a Roman. In fact, Nero was emperor at the time Paul wrote this epistle and we may be sure that Paul never considered Nero a saint. These saints are also identified as "called". Paul knew whom God had called: Isaiah 41:8-9 told it: "But thou ISRAEL, art My servant; Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham My friend. Thou whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, and CALLED THEE from the chief men thereof and said unto thee, 'Thou art My servant; I have chosen thee and not cast thee away.'" Isaiah 51:2 states, "look unto Abraham your father and unto Sarah that bore you; for I CALLED HIM ALONE and blessed him and increased him." Paul well knew that God had called and predestined His people Israel to be the people who are consecrated to His service which is just what the word "saint" means. Therefore, in Romans 8:30, Paul says, "Moreover, whom He did predestinate, them He also called: and whom He called, He also justified: and whom He justified, them He also glorified."
Similarly, Paul writes to the saints in various other cities. I Corinthians 1:2, II Corinthians 1:1, Ephesians 1:1, Philippians 1:1, Colossians 1:2, 24-26, and Philemon verse 5, all these clearly state that Paul was writing to those who are the saints in those various cities. Paul knew that the saints, the Israelites, were the people to whom God's message was addressed. The people in whom the message must take root, that they should be called to His service as God had declared from the beginning. Therefore, it was to them that Paul wrote and not to the Gentiles in general. In my next broadcast, we will consider this point, as we continue with the proof that the New Testament is as much an Israel Book as is the Old Testament.
ISRAEL IN THE NEW TESTAMENT - PART II
by Pastor Bertrand L. Comparet
In this series, we shall see that the New Testament is as much an ISRAEL book as the Old Testament. In my last sermon, we saw that Jesus Christ strongly emphasized that He had come only to His own people ISRAEL, and sent out His disciples with the direct command, "Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not; but go rather to the lost sheep of the HOUSE of ISRAEL." Also, He promised His disciples that, in the millennium, they should sit upon 12 thrones, judging the 12 Tribes of ISRAEL, not various religious denominations.
Then we started to study what Paul wrote on this subject. Most people have been taught by their churches that Paul started a new religion with Israel left out of it. On the contrary, as we shall see, Paul still taught good Israel doctrines. We saw that in his Epistle to the Romans, which most people think was a message to the Gentiles. Paul was writing only to those particular people in Rome who were "saints" and that, as Paul knew very well. Psalm verse 14, tells us that ALL of the saints are the Children of Israel. Therefore Paul understood that he was writing to the Israelite colony in Rome. We saw that the same thing was true of Paul's Epistles to various other cities, I & II Corinthians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, also the letter to Philemon.
But let's examine the Epistle to the Romans still more closely. Romans is generally regarded as supremely the book written to the Gentiles. It might surprise you to know that there is no such word as "Gentiles" in the Bible in its original language. Oh yes, I know that you can find it in your King James version of the Bible, also in the less accurate of the modern English translations. But it was never in the original languages and has been put in by the translators. Neither Hebrew nor Greek has such a word as "Gentile", nor any word which is equivalent to it. The word "Gentile" comes from the Latin word "gentilis", which means "one who is not a Roman citizen." If you were to use the word accurately, you would have to say that Jesus Christ and all of His disciples were Gentiles, for none of them were Roman citizens. Paul was the only one of the Apostles who was not a Gentile, for Paul was a Roman citizen. But what does the Bible say in the original languages in which it was written?
In the Old Testament, which was written in Hebrew, whenever you see the word "Gentile" in your English Bible, the Hebrew used the word "goy" if it was in the singular, or the plural form of it, "goyim". This word means precisely "NATION" and nothing else. You remember that God told Abraham "I will make nations of thee". (Genesis 17:6) In the Hebrew, God said "I will make goyim of thee". It would have been utterly too silly to translate this "I will make gentiles of your descendants." so the translators here translated it correctly as "nations". Again, you remember that when the twins, Jacob and Esau were still in the womb of Rebekah their mother, they struggled together and she prayed to God to tell her why this was so and God answered her, "Two nations are in thy womb." In the Hebrew original this says, "Two goyim are in thy womb." Certainly God never told her that "two Gentiles are in thy womb". So here the translators had to translate it correctly, "Nations". But, this is exactly the same word which they translate "gentiles" in many other places.
The New Testament which most of you have was translated from manuscripts written in the Greek language. Whenever, in your New Testament, you see the word "gentile", the word in the Greek was "ETHNOS". "Ethnos" means "nation", just as the Hebrew word "goy" does. In many places, it would have been silly to translate it "gentile", so the translators had to use the correct word "Nation" For example in Luke 7, we read that a certain Roman officer, a centurian, had a servant who was dying. The centurian asked some elders of the Jews to intercede for him with Jesus and ask Jesus to heal his servant. The Jews did urge Jesus to do this for the centurion saying "that he was worthy for whom He should do this, for he loveth our ethnos and he hath built us a synagogue." Surely no Jew would have praised the centurion for loving the gentiles, nor would he have built a synagogue for gentiles. So, they had to translate this one correctly as "nation" not "gentile". But, everywhere you see the word "gentile" in the New Testament, it is the same word "ETHNOS" in the Greek. This word "ethnos" has no pagan, or non Israel, nor even non Greek connotation. The Greeks distinguished between Greeks and Barbarians, which all educated men like Paul knew. So he said in Romans 1:14, I am debtor both to the Greeks and to the Barbarians." So just remember that Paul never once wrote "gentile" in all his writings, he only wrote "ethnos", which means "nation". Therefore, do not be misled by the translation where you read in Romans 1:13, "that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles," for Paul actually wrote, "even as among other nations." Paul had made converts who lived among other nations, both in Greece and in Syria and in Asia Minor. You must carefully judge from the general context in which the term occurs, whether the particular nation of which he speaks is an Israel nation or a non Israel nation. If it is a non Israel nation, then the common term "gentile" may as well be used, even though inaccurately, because we are accustomed to it.
But for further proof that Paul was not writing to gentiles in the Epistle to the so called Romans, note how Paul tells these "saints" in Rome to whom he writes, in Romans 4, That "Abraham is our father, as pertaining to the flesh," and "Abraham, who is the father of us all." Certainly he could not have told any "gentile" that Abraham was his father, as pertaining to the flesh!
Again, this is consistent with what Paul wrote to the "Saints" in the city of Corinth. In I Corinthians 10:1-4, he writes, "Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that ALL OUR FATHERS were under the cloud, and ALL passed through the sea; and were ALL baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; and did ALL eat the same spiritual meat; and did ALL drink the same spiritual drink; for they drank of that spiritual Rock which followed them: and that Rock was Christ."
Paul could not have truthfully told gentiles that their fathers, like his, had all passed through the Red Sea with Moses and had all been protected by the pillar of cloud by day and of fire by night and had all eaten the manna and had all drunk of the water which poured out of the rock in answer to Moses' prayer. Only to ISRAELITES could he have said this with the slightest spark of truth.
Not even the prophets of the Old Testament were more firmly convinced of the great and continuing destiny of Israel than was Paul. I know that you have been taught, in your churches, that Paul threw all this into the rubbish heap and started a new religion without Israel in it. Where they get that idea I certainly don't know. Listen to this, from the Epistle to the Romans, and see if you can find anything here to show that Paul thought that Israel was all through. In Romans 9:4-5, Paul speaks of the "Israelites: to whom pertaineth the adoption and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the law and the service of God and the promises; whose are the fathers; and of whom, as concerning the flesh, Christ came."
You have been taught that gentiles are "adopted" as the children of God, but did you notice that Paul says that it is the "Israelites to whom pertaineth the adoption?" How could Paul make it any clearer than this, which is in Romans 11:1-2, "I say then, hath God cast away His people? God forbid! For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the Tribe of Benjamin. God hath not cast away His people which He foreknew! Remember what he says about those whom God foreknew! "For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son. Moreover, whom He did predestinate, them He also called: and whom He called, them He also justified: and whom He justified, them He also glorified." Since God's people Israel are those He foreknew, then this is written about them.
So we see that in the New Testament, the writings of Paul very clearly constitute Israel books, just as much so as the Old Testament. But what of the other books in the New Testament, which were not written by Paul? Are they also Israel books? We will consider them in my next broadcast.
ISRAEL IN THE NEW TESTAMENT - PART III
by Pastor Bertrand L. Comparet
In the past I have often told you there is as much Christianity in the Old Testament as in the New. Although it is harder to understand, because in the Old Testament it is presented mostly in symbolic form, largely in the rituals. But God is always consistent with His own truth, so it is also true that the New Testament proclaims God's eternal unchanging love for His own people, Israel. In my last two broadcasts, we have been examining the New Testament to prove this. We saw that the four Gospels record the words of Jesus Christ and that He strongly emphasized that He was sent primarily to the lost sheep of the House of Israel. In His parables, He taught the truth of Israel's continued place in God's plan. Then we examined the various Epistles of Paul and we saw that he wrote to "the saints". We know from Psalm 148:14, that ALL of God's saints are His people Israel. We saw that in the Epistle to the Romans, Paul reminded these "saints" to whom He wrote that Abraham was their father, as pertaining to the flesh. No changing of gentiles into "spiritual Israel" here, for Paul said Abraham was their father "as pertaining to the flesh". Similarly, Paul reminded "the saints" at Corinth that their fathers, like his, passed through the Red Sea with Moses and ate the manna and drank of the water which poured out of the rock in answer to Moses' prayer, something that couldn't be said of "gentiles".
Now let's look at the writing of other Apostles in the New Testament. What about James? James addresses his Epistle "To the twelve Tribes scattered abroad". This could not be to the Jews, for they were not of any of the Tribes of Israel and also they were not 'scattered abroad" when James wrote, nor for ten year thereafter, they were still collected together in Palestine. It could not even be the people of the Kingdom of Judah, for they were never more that the 3 Tribes of Judah, Benjamin and Levi and James is speaking to the "twelve Tribes scattered abroad." But we know that the Assyrians took into captivity first all the people of the ten northern Tribes who made up the Kingdom of Israel. Then the Assyrians, under King Sennacherib invaded the southern Kingdom of Judah and deported 200,150 of its people in the same captivity with the ten Tribes. Finally we know from historical sources that, upon the fall of Babylon, the Tribes of Israel, by that time known as Scythians", swooped down on Babylon and carried off most of the people of Judah, Benjamin and Levi who were captives at Babylon, leaving behind just the relatively few who returned to Palestine with Ezra and Nehemiah. So when James wrote his Epistle, in A.D. 60, the Twelve Tribes were scattered abroad, by that time known as the Angli, the Saxons, the Ostrogoths, the Visigoths and the Royal Scyths, already moving on their long march into their predestined homes in Europe. It was to them that James was writing.
What about Peter? The First Epistle of Peter leaves no doubt that he was writing to the Israelites. The first verse is badly mistranslated. Instead of "the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia," as your King James version reads, the actual wording in the Greek is, "TO THE EXILES OF THE DISPERSION in Pontus, Galatia etc.". Pontus, Galatia and Cappadocia are the eastern part of modern Turkey and we know that the Scythian tribes of Israel did occupy this region before they moved out on their long journey into Europe.
They were exiles from their original homeland in Palestine, they were dispersed over a wide region. Finally, to clinch the matter, Peter identified them in the second verse as "Elect, according to the foreknowledge of God, the Father." But who were God's elect? In Isaiah 45:4, God speaks of "Israel Mine elect". As to the foreknowledge of God, remember that in Romans 11:2, Paul confirms that "God hath not cast away His people which He foreknew". "Elect" is but another word for "chosen". In Deuteronomy 7:6, the people of Israel are told that "The Lord they God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto Himself above all the people that are upon the face of the earth".
But let's look farther into what Peter has to say. In I Peter 2:9, he says to these "exiles" of the dispersion on Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, etc., "But ye are a CHOSEN RACE, A ROYAL PRIESTHOOD, AN HOLY NATION, A PECULIAR PEOPLE: THAT YE SHOULD SHOW FORTH THE PRAISE OF HIM who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light." I know that your King James version Bible says "a chosen generation"; but that is a mistranslation, for the word in the Greek is "GENOS", MEANING A RACE, NOT A GENERATION. THIS COULDN'T DESCRIBE ANYONE BUT ISRAEL. THE CHOSEN RACE IS ISRAEL.
Among many other places we find it in Isaiah 44:1, "Yet now hear O Jacob My servant; and Israel whom I have CHOSEN"; and Deuteronomy 7:6, "The Lord thy God hath CHOSEN thee to be a special people unto Himself above all the people that are upon the face of the earth." Next, "a royal priesthood, an holy nation:" this also can only be Israel, for Exodus 19:6 tells the people of Israel that "Ye shall be unto Me a kingdom of priests and an holy nation." "A peculiar people" is another identifying mark of Israel, for Deuteronomy 14:2 says, "For thou art an holy people unto the Lord they God and the Lord hath chosen thee to be A PECULIAR PEOPLE unto Himself above all the nations that are upon the earth." Finally, "that ye should show forth the praise of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light" is another identifying mark of Israel. In Isaiah 43:21 God says, "This people have I formed for Myself; THEY SHALL SHOW FORTH MY PRAISE."
I have skipped over the Epistle to the Hebrews, which is not signed, but is usually credited to Paul. I can't imagine anyone disputing that this book, as indicated by its title, is written TO, as well as written about the Hebrews, the Israelites. Probably we need no say more about it here. If I were to start in on that book, it alone would take several broadcasts to cover. I will go into that some other time.
What of the little understood Book of REVELATION? It is too clear for any possible doubt that his book is written in symbols and is not to be taken literally. But, you must understand the symbols used in order to know the great realities for which they stand. These symbols are, in general Israel symbols. Hence it can be understood only by those who can recognize the Israel basis of the symbols. This also is a book about which whole volumes have been written. It is too long for me to take up as just a subdivision of our present theme of Israel in the New Testament.
But, we have covered enough to show that the New Testament and the Old Testament are just the two sides of the same coin which has the same value, whichever side you look at. If this were not so, we could not have confidence in either one of them. Truth must always be consistent with itself. Jesus Christ came not to take back God's promises and nullify the prophecies, but rather, as Paul said in Romans 15:8, "Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision, for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers."
All that had been promised to Abraham and Moses was to be made good. Likewise, these promises to Abraham and Moses included the basis for Christianity. In fact, Moses was a Christian! Does that startle you, when you remember that Moses died more than 1400 years before Christ was born? Yet the New Testament tells us that Moses was a Christian. In Hebrews 11:24-26, it says, "By faith, Moses when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh's daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season: ESTEEMING THE REPROACH OF CHRIST greater riches than the treasure of Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompense of the reward." Now it is certain that he could not have "esteemed the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt" unless he truly understood what all the rituals he taught the people really meant, that they talked of the coming Redeemer. So it is that Hebrews 10:1 speaks of "the Law having a shadow of the good things to come." The Book of Hebrews explains how the rituals were only symbols of the coming of Christ and His sacrifice for us.
Therefore, never let anyone tell you that the two halves of the Bible are inconsistent and that to accept one you must reject the other. No, the Bible is all one book. It tells of God's putting His sons and daughters on earth as His chosen people, Israel. The great destiny He set for them. It tells of His foreknowledge of their imperfections and sins and His provision from before the foundation of the world of the Redeemer who would save His people. Both Old and New Testaments are Christian books and both of them are Israel books.