Over the centuries many believers have wondered how an impartial God could choose one man and bless him and his seed with promises for the eternal future. Why did YHWH choose Abraham and showed favor towards him and his seed?
Well, we know from Scriptures that Abraham walked by faith before God even before YHWH revealed himself to him. So surely, he fulfilled the legal requirement which is faith. And he went to the greatest length possible to prove this faith by being willing to sacrifice his promised son Isaac to God.
For this study we are especially interested in the chronological aspect of God’s favor for Abraham and his fleshly seed and we want to compare it with the time period of Gods’ special favour to Abrahams spiritual seed, his seed by faith.
We will see that the period of favor for Abraham’s physical seed was typical of the period of favor for Abraham’s spiritual seed, the Christian age. They are of exactly the same length, and correspond to each other.
On Nisan 14 1943BC Abraham then 75 years old crossed the
25 For I do not want YOU, brothers [the Christian congregation, the spiritual seed of Abraham], to be ignorant of this sacred secret, in order for YOU not to be discreet in your own eyes: that a dulling of sensibilities [or ‘hardening’] has happened in part to Israel [the physical fleshly seed of Abraham] until the full number of people of the nations has come in, 26 and in this manner all Israel will be saved. Just as it is written: “The [promised] deliverer will come out of
Here Paul gives us two marker for the period of Christian favor and thus he might help us to find out the length of it. He shows that the favor of Abraham ‘s spiritual seed began, when his fleshly seed,
Please consider next the words of Peter in Acts 3:19,20…
19 “Repent, therefore, and turn around so as to get YOUR sins blotted out, when the appointed time of refreshing may come from the person of Jehovah 20 whom heaven, indeed, must hold within itself until the times of restoration of all things of which God spoke through the mouth of his holy prophets of old time. (NWT adapted from the Greek) and that he may send forth the Christ appointed for YOU, Jesus,…
The Christ, Jesus, is to be hold in the heavens until the time of restoration for fleshly
Placing the statements of Paul, the apostle of the Gentiles, and Peter, the apostle of the Jews, together, we learn that the time for the return of favor to fleshly
We do have further proof which furnishes us with the exact year when favor should begin to return to
Now for the exact year of the return of favor to Israel, which also marks the end of the heavenly call - from which date Abraham’s fleshly seed will begin gradually to see, and to have increasing evidences of returning divine favor, and from which date also God's call to heavenly honors will cease, let us do a simple piece of math.
Abraham’s fleshly seed, - like his spiritual seed -, was called of God to be a peculiar treasure, a special possession for him above all other people. Separated from the world, they were through birth the recipients of special favor from God for 1975 years. This period began with the inauguration of the Abrahamic Covenant Nisan 1943BC and ended either with the death of Jesus on Nisan 14 33AD or with the acceptance of the church at Pentecost, Sivan 6 33AD. From this point onward, God did not bestow special favor on Abraham’s fleshly seed but he now blessed and favored the children of Abraham by faith, the spiritual
It should be noted, however, that God continued his favor to individuals of that nation, after the nation, as a nation, had been cut off; for the gospel call was confined to individuals of that nation for three and a half years after Pentecost, after the death of Christ.
During the long period (1975 years) of favor for the fleshly offspring, during which other seeds were ignored,
Thus, because of their unfitness, the day of their greatest favor became the day of their rejection and fall from favor. And the great favor of becoming joint-heirs with Messiah, which Israel, except the faithful "remnant" (Isa. 1:9; 10:22,23; Rom. 9:28,29; 11:5), thus missed by their blindness and hardness of heart, was offered to believing Gentiles: not to Gentile nations, but to believers of every nation. And God's promised favor will not return to them as a fleshly seed, to remove their blindness, and to lead them as a first-fruit of the nations into earthly blessings, until the full number of the "special people" have been called from the Gentiles -- until the full number of the Gentiles has responded to Christ’s call.
Yet the blindness of Abraham’s physical seed was only a "blindness in part," and not a total loss of sight. The testimony of the Law, the prophets and the apostles was open to all, Jew or Gentile and during the Christian era any Jew who would humbly and thankfully accept the favor of God side by side with his spiritual brother, might do so. Yet few have ever been able to do so; and no favor will be granted, and no special effort to convince them as a nation of the truth, or to overcome their prejudices, will be exerted, until the full number of Abraham’s offspring by faith has come in; or, in other words, until Spiritual Israel is complete.
How long will they be cut off from his special favour?
How long will they be cut off from his special favour?
In the following paragraphs we will scrutinize 3 Scriptures that will give us the length of their cutting off and will thus also tell us when the bride of Christ is completely collected.
14 “‘Therefore, look! days are coming,’ is the utterance of Jehovah, ‘when it will no more be said: “As Jehovah is alive who brought the sons of
18 And, first of all [before this restoration, this favor will come], I will repay the double amount [“duplicate.” Heb., mish·neh´.] of their error and of their sin, on account of their profaning my land. With the corpses of their disgusting things and their detestable things they had filled my inheritance.’” (Jeremiah 16)
The Hebrew word here rendered "double" is mishneh, and signifies a second portion, a repetition. thus understood, the prophet's declaration is, that from the time they lose God’s favor until the time of their return to favor would be a repetition, or duplication in time, of their previous history, during which time they had enjoyed divine favor as Abraham’s fleshly seed.
With the prophecy of God’s prophet Jeremiah, we do have enough information to calculate the timing of these events. But our God is rich in mercy and very pitiful and considers our weakness of faith, and has provided more than the one testimony. Let us turn to Zechariah’s prophecy in chapter 9 verse 9 to 12:
9 “Be very joyful, O daughter of
In prophetic vision Zechariah walks beside Jesus as he rides into Jerusalem – 33AD - five days before his crucifixion (John 12:1-12), and to the people the Prophet cries, "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of
After briefly noting the evil consequences to follow a rejection of their king (Zech. ), the prophet, speaking for Jehovah, addresses them: "Turn you to the stronghold [Christ], you prisoners of hope. Even today [I am] telling [you], ‘I shall repay to you, a double portion."
The word double, here, is the same word used by Jeremiah -"mishneh" - a repetition, or another equal portion.
This prophecy not only leaves no doubt about there being a double - a duplication of chastisement added to Israel's experience because of their rejection of the Messiah - but it also marks the exact day when it began, and makes the conclusions drawn from Jeremiah's prophecy, and fixed by our Lord's words, "Your house is left unto you desolate," doubly strong, exact and clear.
But our loving Father, who wishes to settle our hearts beyond doubt, upon the small point which decides and proves so much, has sent us word concerning
1 “COMFORT, comfort my people,” says the God of YOU men. 2 “SPEAK to the heart of
The Hebrew word here translated "double" is ‘kephel’, which signifies double, in the sense of a thing having been folded in the middle.
Isaiah takes his standpoint down at this end, at the time when the "double" (mishneh) has been fulfilled – 2008AD. Now we can see an interesting pattern:
Jeremiah foretold that the days would come when God would scatter them among all nations, and that, when they have received "double" he would save them again by a more mighty display of power than when they came out of Egyptian bondage. Zechariah speaks as though living at the time of Christ's offering himself to
3 prophecies from 3 different points of view! They are each important, and each would be strong alone; but combined they are a three-fold cord of wonderful strength to the humble, studious, trustful children of God.
A special witness to Abraham’s physical seed today
What will this promised special witness to physical
1 And a reed like a rod was given me as he said: “Get up and measure the temple [sanctuary] of God and the altar and those worshiping in it. 2 But as for the courtyard that is outside the temple [sanctuary], cast it clear out and do not measure it, because it has been given to the nations, and they will trample the holy city underfoot for forty-two months. 3 And I will cause my two witnesses to prophesy a thousand two hundred and sixty days dressed in sackcloth.” 4 These are the two olive trees and the two lampstands and are standing before the Lord of the earth.
5 And if anyone wants to harm them, fire issues forth from their mouths and devours their enemies; and if anyone should want to harm them, in this manner he must be killed. 6 These have the authority to shut up heaven that no rain should fall during the days of their prophesying, and they have authority over the waters to turn them into blood and to strike the earth with every sort of plague as often as they wish.
7 And when they have finished their witnessing, the wild beast that ascends out of the abyss will make war with them and conquer them and kill them. 8 And their corpses will be on the broad way of the great city which is in a spiritual sense called Sod´om and
So I said: “I have seen, and, look! there is a lampstand, all of it of gold, with a bowl on top of it. And its seven lamps are upon it, even seven; and the lamps that are at the top of it have seven pipes. 3 And there are two olive trees alongside it, one on the right side of the bowl and one on its left side.” 4 Then I answered and said to the angel who was speaking with me, saying: “What do these [things] mean, my lord?” 5 So the angel who was speaking with me answered and said to me: “Do you not really know what these things mean?” In turn I said: “No, my lord.” 6 Accordingly he answered and said to me: “This is the word of Jehovah to Ze·rub´ba·bel [meaning ‘offspring of
These 2 witnesses will be filled with the oil of God’s lampstand, receiving his Holy Spirit, receiving the true knowledge of the Bible so that they can open up the Scriptures, especially to the fleshly seed of Abraham during the Great Tribulation and before Yahweh levels out the ‘land’ in Armageddon.