God’s Message to Man through the Prophets - Part 2 -- By: Charles L. Feinberg

Journal: Grace Journal
Volume: GJ 05:2 (Spring 1964)
Article: God’s Message to Man through the Prophets - Part 2
Author: Charles L. Feinberg

God’s Message to Man through the Prophets - Part 2

Charles L. Feinberg

II. The Prophetic Word and Israel
Charles L. Feinberg

Is there a future for the nation Israel? On this pivotal question all systems of prophecy divide. There is probably no more comprehensive theme in all prophecy than this.

Those who interpret the prophetic Scriptures figuratively or symbolically hold that all Old Testament predictions relating to Israel are realized in the Church, and there remain no promises for Israel in the future. On the other hand, Bible students who interpret prophecy literally find many Scriptures predicting a glorious future for God’s ancient prople. Indeed, so central and significant is the place of Israel in God’s future program that all prophecy must be misunderstood and twisted if this phase of prophecy is not given its rightful emphasis.

One of the keenest German philosophers, Hegel, an ardent student of the philosophy of history, said when speaking of the history of Israel, “It is a dark, troublesome enigma to me. I am not able to understand it. It does not fit in with any of our categories. It is a riddle.” If it is dark, the Word of God can throw light upon it. If it is an enigma, the Bible can unravel it.

The last references to Israel in Scripture in relation to their past history indicate their spiritual failure in rejecting their Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Luke states it thus: “And he said unto them, O foolish men, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! Behooved it not the Christ to suffer these things, and to enter into his glory? And beginning from Moses and from all the prophets, he interpreted to them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself” (Luke 24:25–27; this and following Scriptures are from the A.S.V.).

Paul approaches Israel’s failure from the angle of the law. Says he, “What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, who followed not after righteousness, attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith: but Israel, following after a law of righteousness, did not arrive at that law. Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by works” (Rom 9:30–32).

The result of this national departure from the Lord has been their setting aside, as far as national testimony is concerned, for the centuries of the Christian era. So thoroughgoing has been this dealing of God with Israel, that many have been ready to conclude that “God is through with the Jews.” But what say the prophetic Scriptures?

One of the inexplicable (on human grounds) ...

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