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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : The stumblingblock of ELECTION

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 The stumblingblock of ELECTION

Albertus Pieters (1897-1987)

Former professor of Bible and Missions at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan.

Quoting Pieters,

“God willed after the institution of the New Covenant there should no longer be any Jewish people in the world – yet here they are! That is a fact-a very sad fact, brought about by their wicked rebellion against God.” [1]

“But is it not monstrous to hold that by reason of this wickedness the said undesired and undesirable group are now heirs of the many exceedingly precious promises of God? Shall we be accused of anti-Semitism, because we speak thus of the Jews? We have not spoken so harshly as the apostle Paul, who knew them intimately and loved them passionately...[Pieters here quotes I Thess 2;14-16]. How is it possible to believe that there are still prophecies of divine grace to be fulfilled in a group upon which the wrath of God has come to the uttermost?” [2]

“Some years ago, in a conference,I heard a brother minister say: “God is through with the Jews.” At that time, this statement startled me, and I thought it extreme, but the more I study the Scriptures the more it seems to me he certainly was right. And, after all, was he saying anything more than the Lord Jesus Christ said, addressing the unbelieving people through the symbolism of the barren fig tree: “Let there be no fruit from thee henceforward forever?” (Matthew 21:19). [3]

“There are at present people in the world who are called, and who call themselves “The Jews”. They claim they are the continuation of ancient Israel, and are the “seed of Abraham” to whom the divine promises were made, and to whom they are to be fulfilled. The claim is conceded by many earnest Christian people who believe that they find in the Bible very important prophecies that must one day be fulfilled in this company who are called “The Jews”, who worship in the synagogue and adhere to the Talmud....How could the Jews be held together and continue to be a “peculiar people” [without a temple, a country, a government]? Only by persevering in all possible rigidity the ordinances handed down from the fathers, with regard to eating and drinking, trimming or shaving the beard, observing fasts and feasts, circumcision, Sabbath keeping on the seventh day of the week, synagogue worship, prohibition of intermarriage, etc., etc. These things must henceforth be their life; for if these were lost all was lost, and they must expect speedily to be absorbed in the mass of the population around them.[4]

“Ignorant that their separateness from the rest of the world was in the divine purpose temporary, they strove to render it permanent. Thus that which had been in itself good became through their error a source of poison in the life of the world; and “The Jew” became the great persistent international problem.” [5]

1-5, all quotes from The Seed of Abraham (Grand Rapids, 1950) (END)

It's often been said that nothing offends the natural man more than divine election. Divine election is the great dethroner and destroyer of anything man has to offer in regards to his salvation. Salvation does not come through the will of him who runs and works or decides but it depends upon the God who chooses apart from any moral or religious qualification within the one who has been chosen. Nothing grates against man's pride more than this. Surely God sees something good that causes Him to choose! No He doesn't. That God chooses upon this basis is an offense to the wisdom and view of the world that man has to show some type of moral aptitiude before God will choose them. The same with the Jew in my opinion. It's said by many God can't possibly still be involved with the Jews because look what they have done and look how they act today and modern Israel is hardly a picture of what God desires. True. Yet God doesn't choose upon the basis of how one is acting or what they have done in the past. He chooses according to His sovereign choice made from eternity. Therefore man's outlook and wisdom and contribution is brought to nought. In all of his reasoning and postulating, perhaps Mr. Pieters ought to have kept in mind divine ELECTION apart form any moral qualification on the part of the one chosen. This election is designed to offend man and his pride. What are the great eschatological themes but a outworking of the reality of divine election? If a future for Israel is offensive maybe it's more than just a different way of seeing the scriptures. Can a prideful root against God's right to choose who He will irregardless of any qualifications on their part have been exposed?

I offer this as food for thought on this Sunday morning.If I've been too hard or outspoken I didn't mean to be. Civl, thoughtful and respectful comments are welcome if anyone is inclined. Please stay on topic if you do reply. I pray you are blessed as you walk with the Lord this day.


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David Winter

 2015/2/1 9:05Profile
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 Re: The stumblingblock of ELECTION

Anecdotal evidence of divine intervention on behalf of the current nation of Israel is astounding. Recently radar was tracking a missile headed for a populated area, when a freak wind just whipped it off course and it landed harmlessly somewhere else. The radar operators were incredulous.

Another story is from when Israeli tanks were caught between the enemy and a mine field- another freak wind suddenly blew the sand away and exposed the mines so the tanks could make it to safety.

The call went out immediately after WWII for some American fighter pilots who were Jewish to sneak into Israel and fly some planes that had been found in Poland- left over from the Nazis- in defense of the new nation which was under attack from the angry neighbors. Against impossible odds, the men in these rickety planes repelled massive enemy forces. An awesome story one can Google.

There is more to all this than can fit into our limited theological perspectives. Paul said there is no longer Jew and Greek, no longer male and female, no longer do we hide out in group identities but are individually called to become personally connected to the Father through His Son Jesus. No one, whether a Jew or a woman or a Mongolian can trust his or her people group for a guarantee of eternal life. Yet in the purposes of God, nations matter and there will be mysteries created as He oversees the affairs of men.

In the meantime, there is no better show than watching what happens in Israel!


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Tom Cameron

 2015/2/1 12:01Profile
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 Re:

quote: 'Yet God doesn't choose upon the basis of how one is acting or what they have done in the past. He chooses according to His sovereign choice made from eternity."

It is not offensive that God does not choose on the basis of merit. What's offensive is the second sentence, the idea that "He chooses according to His sovereign choice made from eternity." But lets not get into that debate.

Docs- why is the "Israel issue" so important to you? I know you post on it frequently. I am just curious as to why some people take special interest in this. What do you hope to accomplish? I do believe that Jewish people have a special place in God's heart- if they accept Christ as Messiah like all other persons must.


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Todd

 2015/2/1 14:41Profile
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 Re:


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David Winter

 2015/2/2 10:06Profile
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 Re:


_________________
David Winter

 2015/2/2 10:06Profile
docs
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Joined: 2006/9/16
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 Re:


_________________
David Winter

 2015/2/2 10:06Profile
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Joined: 2006/9/16
Posts: 2400


 Re:


_________________
David Winter

 2015/2/2 10:06Profile
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 Re: Can the moderators help?

I don't have a clue as to what just happened because I didn't click the Submit button. Can the blank errors below possibly be deleted?

With apologies.


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David Winter

 2015/2/2 10:09Profile
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 Re:

I thought you were using invisible ink!


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Todd

 2015/2/2 10:49Profile
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 Invisible ink

Ha, if you had true discernment you would have known what I wrote with that invisible ink!

I honestly wasn't near the Sumbit box. Oh well.


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David Winter

 2015/2/2 11:02Profile





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