Sunday, April 7, was a special holiday. It was International Beaver Day, International Snailpapers Day, Metric System Day, National Beer Day, No Housework Day, Tangible Karma Day, and World Health Organization Day. Did I miss any? Oh yes, it was also Holocaust Remembrance Day. Which did you commemorate?
For those so young that Holocaust only means the burning coat the giant Fezzik wore in The Princess Bride, the historical meaning is the period in world history when 6 million Jewish people were systematically burned and otherwise murdered by Nazis. Such treatment is not new to the Jewish people--a witty explanation for Jewish holidays states, "They tried to kill us, we won, let's eat!" Anti-Semitism has existed for thousands of years. It is appalling that such an attitude could exist in our "civilized" day, but it is here, and it is growing. In fact, as I scoured the internet for information, it was difficult to find a listing of holidays that included HRD.
It is disgusting to think that any racial, national, religious or ethnic group should be annihilated for those reasons. It is particularly inexcusable that a religious group that blares "peace and love" on every street corner and media outlet should contribute, albeit unwittingly, to anti-Semitism.
God's promise to Abram/Abraham, progenitor of the Jewish people, still stands: "I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed" (Genesis 12:2-3). Witness the history of those countries that mistreated the sons of Israel: They are no longer major world powers, if they exist yet at all.
One of the blessings promised by God to the world through Abraham was the promise of the Messiah, the Savior-King of the world. "The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. Scripture does not say 'and to seeds,' meaning many people, but 'and to your seed,' meaning one person, who is Christ" (Galatians 3:16). We know the promised Messiah, son of Abraham, as Jesus Christ. Of his followers it is said, "If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise" (Galatians 3:29). For a follower of Christ in any way to denigrate the Jewish people is to commit step-fratricide.
That promise is of four inextricable parts: A land, a law, a Lord, and a legal ruler (Genesis 48:4; Jeremiah 31:33; I Kings 2:45). Remove any part, and the Jewish people become irrelevant (Romans 9:4-5).
For a Christian to treat Jewish people and the land of Israel as irrelevant is to poke a finger in God's eye and declare His Word as malleable as the human mind can make it (Zechariah 2:8; John 10:35). It is to doubt the permanence of the Creation itself (Jeremiah 31:35-36).
The teaching that the church has replaced Israel--and that God is finished with the Jewish people--besides twisting and even neglecting Scripture, lays an unintentional foundation for anti-Semitism. Indeed, it was a combination of social Darwinism and the teaching of some church fathers that Hitler wove into his pastiche of Aryan pride.
God has not rejected the Jewish people in favor of the church--it is arrogant to say so (Romans 11:18). The church is God's vehicle for bringing Gentiles into the future kingdom of Israel. The gospel proclaimed by the church is the gospel of the kingdom (Matthew 24:14). The time will come when the church is no more and Israel will be head of the nations, an engine firing on all four pistons of the promises (Deuteronomy 28:14; Revelation 21).
Only the gospel of a literal kingdom of Israel can harmonize the 1189 chapters of the Bible, explain the Middle East, and prepare a soul for eternity (Revelation 21).
Alan is a freelance devotional writer for Lifestyles Over 50 and the Allentown, PA, Morning Call. He is also the Peer-less Reviewer (General Editor) for Bridgeway Homeschool Academy in Catasauqua, PA, a Christian homeschool academy. Passionate about reviving theology and church methodology.
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