Discourse 1015 - Shema Yisrael ‒ Hear, O ISRAEL: the judgment of God on his people.

The "Israel movement" in the Christian congregations / Christian-evangelical Zionism - Part 5




The prophet Isaiah.

The prophet Jeremiah.

The prophet Ezekiel.

The future of Israel.

Does God not have a Son? / Commentary by a member of the believing Jewish community in Germany 00, 2010-08-07

Israel's exodus from Egypt.

Jesus' last Passover before his death.

The consequences for Israel.



Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 
(Deut 6:4-5)



By contrast with the promises relating to the Millennial Kingdom of Peace, where Israel, having been converted to its Messiah ‒ our Lord Jesus Christ ‒ will become a world power (“the chief of the nations”, Jer 31,7) and reign with him and the resurrected martyrs on earth, God the Almighty has pronounced the following judgment on Israel, still unconverted to this day, through the mouth of his prophets.


The prophet Isaiah

Israel does not know, My people do not understand.

Listen, O heavens, and hear, O earth; For the LORD speaks, "Sons I have reared and brought up, But they have revolted against Me. "An ox knows its owner, And a donkey its master’s manger, But Israel does not know, My people do not understand. Alas, sinful nation, People weighed down with iniquity, Offspring of evildoers, Sons who act corruptly! They have abandoned the LORD, They have despised the Holy One of Israel, They have turned away from Him. Where will you be stricken again, As you continue in your rebellion? The whole head is sick And the whole heart is faint. Isa 1, 2- 5;


When God, almost two thousand years ago, sent the people of Israel his Son as their Messiah and Savior, they rejected him. They abused him as an impostor and blasphemer, beat him and condemned him to death. What they did not know at the time ‒ and still do not want to know today ‒ is the biblical fact that in rejecting the Son they have rejected the Father as well, and turned away from him. In turning down his Son they have separated themselves from their God, and consequently are a God-less people.

Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father.

1Jn 2,23 Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also. 1Jn 2,23;

Jn 15,23 "He who hates Me hates My Father also. Jn 15,23;

No one comes to the Father but through Me.

Jn 14,6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. Jn 14, 6;

Unless you believe that I am He (the Messiah), you will die in your sins.

Jn 8,22 So the Jews were saying, "Surely He will not kill Himself, will He, since He says, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come’?" 8,23 And He was saying to them, "You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world. 8,24 "Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins." Jn 8,22-24;


As their God tells them in the passage quoted earlier (Isa 1,4), they are a sinful nation, a people weighed down with iniquity, and until they are converted to Jesus Christ ‒ whether as an individual or as an entire people ‒ they no longer have any possibility remaining of having any contact with their God. However much they pray, God does not hear them. Their hands are covered with blood ‒ including the blood of the Son of God.

Even though you multiply prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are covered with blood.

I hate your new moon festivals and your appointed feasts, They have become a burden to Me; I am weary of bearing them. So when you spread out your hands in prayer, I will hide My eyes from you; Yes, even though you multiply prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are covered with blood. Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Remove the evil of your deeds from My sight. Cease to do evil. Isa 1,14-16;


Any Christian who denies these statements of the Bible, or seeks to relativize their bitter reality by seeing them as symbolic metaphors, places himself or herself on the same level as those who had our Redeemer crucified. He makes himself guilty and crucifies the Lord once more.



THE  PARABLE  OF  THE  UNFRUITFUL  VINEYARD

Let me sing now for my well-beloved a song of my beloved concerning His vineyard.
My well-beloved had a vineyard on a fertile hill.
He dug it all around, removed its stones, and planted it with the choicest vine.
And He built a tower in the middle of it and also hewed out a wine vat in it;
Then He expected it to produce good grapes,
But it produced only worthless ones.

~~~~~~~~~~~

And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem and men of Judah,
Judge between Me and My vineyard.
What more was there to do for My vineyard that I have not done in it?
Why, when I expected it to produce good grapes did it produce worthless ones?
So now let Me tell you what I am going to do to My vineyard:

~~~~~~~~~~~

I will remove its hedge and it will be consumed;
I will break down its wall and it will become trampled ground.
I will lay it waste;
It will not be pruned or hoed,
But briars and thorns will come up.
I will also charge the clouds to rain no rain on it.

~~~~~~~~~~~

For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel
And the men of Judah His delightful plant.
Thus He looked for justice, but behold, bloodshed;
For righteousness, but behold, a cry of distress. Isa 5, 1- 7;





The prophet Jeremiah

And although they say, ‘As the LORD lives,’ surely they swear falsely.

Roam to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, And look now and take note. And seek in her open squares, If you can find a man, If there is one who does justice, who seeks truth, Then I will pardon her. And although they say, ‘As the LORD lives,’ Surely they swear falsely. Jer 5, 1- 2;


And because Israel has now been a godless nation for almost two thousand years, we find lying and deceit in the highest offices of state, as is the case with other nations of the world as well. Presidents (Ezer Weitzmann, Moshe Katzav) and Prime Ministers (Benjamin Netanjahu, Ehud Olmert) of Israel have been condemned by the courts and have been forced to resign on charges of corruption. Even the member of parliament and leader of the religious Shas Party, Ariel Deri, was condemned by the courts for corruption and fraud.

You have smitten and consumed them - but they have refused to repent.

O LORD, do not Your eyes look for truth? You have smitten them, But they did not weaken; You have consumed them, But they refused to take correction. They have made their faces harder than rock; They have refused to repent. Then I said, "They are only the poor, They are foolish; For they do not know the way of the LORD Or the ordinance of their God. "I will go to the great And will speak to them, For they know the way of the LORD And the ordinance of their God." But they too, with one accord, have broken the yoke And burst the bonds.Jer 5, 3- 5;


One might have supposed that the destruction of the Temple and the city of Jerusalem by Titus’ Roman legions in the year 70 and the dispersal of the people of Israel from its country, together with the many painful pogroms in some European countries, not to speak of the millions who suffered in the Shoa ‒ the Holocaust ‒ would have been a sufficient reason for the people of Israel to convert to their God and come to have faith in his Son. But Israel has been too stiff-necked to do so, and to this day they still refuse to convert and walk in the good way. As God already told Moses:

The LORD said to Moses, “I have seen this people, and behold, they are an obstinate people.” (Ex 32,9)


The LORD says: "See and ask where the good way is, and walk in it." But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’

Thus says the LORD, "Stand by the ways and see and ask for the ancient paths, Where the good way is, and walk in it; And you will find rest for your souls." But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’ "And I set watchmen over you, saying, ‘Listen to the sound of the trumpet!’" But they said, ‘We will not listen.’ "Therefore hear, O nations, And know, O congregation, what is among them. "Hear, O earth: behold, I am bringing disaster on this people, The fruit of their plans, Because they have not listened to My words, And as for My law, they have rejected it also.Jer 6,16-19;


But it isn’t just that Israel has refused to be converted ‒ they even go further. As it appears from the statements of representatives of the Israel movement in the Christian congregations, the Jews ‒ who have no God any longer, because they rejected him and his Son ‒ are now trying to tell the Christians, who believe in this Son of God and worship him as their God and Lord, how they should understand their sacred duty as Christians. In some German congregations naive brethren and sisters are hearing sermons by German and Jewish preachers telling them that the Lord’s command in Mk 16,15 (“Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation”) may have had validity for the rest of the world but does not apply to Israel. In accordance with the behest of the Jewish Agency (the Israeli immigration authority), people have to sign a contractual agreement to the effect that they will not missionize in Israel and will not mention Jesus Christ, otherwise they will not be allowed to enter the country.

(See also Discourse 1013: “Report from the camp of the Israel movement”)


How can you say, ‘the law of the LORD is with us’? The lying pen of the scribes has made it into a lie.

"You shall say to them, ‘Thus says the LORD, "Do men fall and not get up again? Does one turn away and not repent? "Why then has this people, Jerusalem, Turned away in continual apostasy? They hold fast to deceit, They refuse to return. "I have listened and heard, They have spoken what is not right; No man repented of his wickedness, Saying, ‘What have I done?’ Everyone turned to his course, Like a horse charging into the battle. "Even the stork in the sky Knows her seasons; And the turtledove and the swift and the thrush Observe the time of their migration; But My people do not know The ordinance of the LORD. "How can you say, ‘We are wise, And the law of the LORD is with us’? But behold, the lying pen of the scribes Has made it into a lie. "The wise men are put to shame, They are dismayed and caught; Behold, they have rejected the word of the LORD, And what kind of wisdom do they have? Jer 8, 4- 9;


Although they have rejected their God and so are a God-less people, they attempt to pretend to the world that they alone are wise and have the law of the Lord with them ‒ as the Lord complains in the above passage (Jer 8,8). And if we study the Bible we may well begin to suppose that they are currently well on the way from being a godless nation to being a nation that is anti-God.

(See also Discourse 101: “Does the Bible say that the Antichrist will be a Jew? - an analysis.”)


The prophet Ezekiel.

For they have rejected My ordinances and have not walked in My statutes.

"Thus says the Lord GOD, ‘This is Jerusalem; I have set her at the center of the nations, with lands around her. ‘But she has rebelled against My ordinances more wickedly than the nations and against My statutes more than the lands which surround her; for they have rejected My ordinances and have not walked in My statutes.’ "Therefore, thus says the Lord GOD, ‘Because you have more turmoil than the nations which surround you and have not walked in My statutes, nor observed My ordinances, nor observed the ordinances of the nations which surround you,’ therefore, thus says the Lord GOD, ‘Behold, I, even I, am against you, and I will execute judgments among you in the sight of the nations. Eze 5, 5- 8;


Just like the Christian world, Jews in Israel likewise long since left off following the ordinances of their God. While in Christendom the Catholic church has falsified the judgments of God and adapted them to its own conceptions, e.g. through their keeping church believers ignorant of the second of the Ten Commandments (while they divide the tenth commandment into two, so that the total still remains ten), in Jewry “the lying pen of the scribes” has made the law of God into a lie, as confirmed by God in the above passage (Jer 8,8). The “holy festivals” of the Christians, like the Christmas festival for instance, have become mere entertainment today; and likewise the religious festivals of the Jews are now celebrated more for reasons of tradition than for the praise of God.

In both cases the proper and correct way of praying has long since been lost, and if a Jew in Israel today puts on a kippa (a Jewish head covering worn for prayer, yarmulke or kappel in Yiddish), this is done not so much with a view to entering within in order to speak with God, but rather ‒ just like the same head-dress, the biretta, worn by Catholic cardinals and by the Pope himself ‒ so as to give people in the vicinity a spurious impression of wisdom and “holiness”. 

0

0    0    0    0   


So it is hardly surprising that this kind of “prayer” should fail to reach the ear of God. Our Lord never wore a head covering when he prayed to the Father. And Paul actually tells us that if a man wears a head covering when praying, he disgraces his head. This separates him from the Holy Spirit of God and breaks his connection with God. So the clerical hierarchy of the Catholic church too can pray all they like, God isn’t ever going to hear them.

Every man who has something on his head while praying or prophesying disgraces his head.

1Cor 11,3 But I want you to understand that Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ. 11,4 Every man who has something on his head while praying or prophesying disgraces his head. 1Cor 11, 3- 4;


It isn’t just that Israel no longer lives by the ordinances of its God, it has also become an aggressor in the Near East, a state based on violence. In the year 2006 Israel attacked its neighbor, the Lebanon, with rockets and aerial bombardments (the Second Lebanon War), completely unprovoked, and bombed its cities. As a result thousands of families had to flee and hundreds of civilians, including women and children, were killed. In this campaign the Israeli military also kept on firing rockets in the close vicinity of the UN (UNIFIL) observation post in Lebanon. Although the officer in charge of this UN support point contacted the Israeli commanders ten times (!) by radio and requested them to desist from shooting rockets so close to the observation post, the building suffered a direct (!) hit on 25 July 2006 and was completely destroyed. The four UN officers manning the post ‒ a Chinese, a Finn, a Canadian and an Austrian ‒ were killed.

And just recently a Gaza aid fleet bringing emergency supplies (foodstuffs, construction materials, fuel and consumer goods) to the Palestinians suffering from Israel’s three year long blockade of the Gaza strip was intercepted and attacked by the Israeli military in international waters (!), an action in which ten unarmed peace activists lost their lives. The ships were then compelled to put in to the Israeli port of Ashdod.

The land is filled with blood and the city is full of perversion.

Then He said to me, "The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is very, very great, and the land is filled with blood and the city is full of perversion; for they say, ‘The LORD has forsaken the land, and the LORD does not see!’ Eze 9, 9;


This real violence in Israel, which is evident to the whole world, the Jews now try to relativize by talking about “violence in Christian pulpits”. The Jewish Anti-Defamation League in Germany has complained that statements in the New Testament gospels are dangerously anti-semitic. The head of JADL, Abe Foxman, asserted, with reference to the 2010 Oberammergau Passion Plays:

“with every annual reading or reenactment of the story of the death of Jesus in Christian churches, millions of Christians imbibed the notion that the Jews had been guilty of the worst crime in history. Into our own time, the deicide libel has been used to justify hatred of Jews and violence against them, including from Christian pulpits.”


Under the heading of violence from Christian pulpits Foxman also includes Christian evangelization among the Jews, which is “seen as a genocide attempt on Jewish souls”.

In all consistency, JADL has now modified the text of the gospels, which serve as the basis for the Oberammergau Passion Plays. Jewish crimes have been blotted out. Today the Jews play a whitewashed and disinfected role in the death of Christ. Now the Roman guards are standing by on Jesus’ first entry to Jerusalem “in order to get it clear who really has power”. In this production, the Jewish high priests who condemn Jesus to death in the gospels now debate about theology, so diverting attention from Jesus himself.

Tearing his clothes, the high priest said, "You have heard the blasphemy; how does it seem to you?" And they all condemned Him to be deserving of death.

Mk 14,60 The high priest stood up and came forward and questioned Jesus, saying, "Do You not answer? What is it that these men are testifying against You?" 14,61 But He kept silent and did not answer. Again the high priest was questioning Him, and saying to Him, "Are You the Christ, the Son of the Blessed One?" 14,62 And Jesus said, "I am; and you shall see the Son of man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven." 14,63 Tearing his clothes, the high priest said, "What further need do we have of witnesses? 14,64 "You have heard the blasphemy; how does it seem to you?" And they all condemned Him to be deserving of death. 14,65 Some began to spit at Him, and to blindfold Him, and to beat Him with their fists, and to say to Him, "Prophesy!" And the officers received Him with slaps in the face. Mk 14,60-65;


The notorious blood oath ‒ “His blood shall be on us and on our children!” (Mt 27:22-25) was deleted from the screenplay. But for the Jewish Anti-Defamation League, even this censorship and corruption of the text was not enough. On 8 May the League’s experts gave a preview, and reported, “These Passion plays continue to present Jewry in damaging stereotype terms, seeing Jewish leaders as crafty, legally minded, vindictive and xenophobic.”

(See also Discourse 1014: “The Jewish Anti-Defamation League rewrites New Testament.”)


So it almost looks as if Jews wanted to forbid Christians to read the New Testament and the gospels altogether. But even if one day they should succeed in this, we have enough information in the Old Testament, in the prophets of Israel ‒ as this example here shows ‒ to recognize the true character of the Jewish leaders (whom our Lord refers to in Mt 23:32-39 as “You serpents. you brood of vipers”) and the Zionist Israelites. Presumably the Jewish ADL is not going to succeed in forbidding us to read their very own Old Testament.

But we can hardly expect, either, that the Jewish Anti-Defamation League is going to cancel out all those passages in their Old Testament which present Israel in terms of “damaging prototypes”, like the following for instance:

o  “My people do not understand, they are a sinful nation, people weighed down with iniquity, offspring of evildoers, sons who act corruptly”

o  “the whole head is sick and the whole heart is faint” (Isa 1:3-6),

o  “their hands are covered with blood from the evil of their deeds-” (Isa 1:14-15) And although they say,

o  “‘As the LORD lives,’ Surely they swear falsely.” (Jer 5:2). The LORD

o  “has smitten them, but they did not weaken,” He has

o  “consumed them, but they refused to take correction” (Jer 5:3). They said,

o  “‘We will not walk in the good way.’” (Jer 6:16). Therefore, thus says the Lord GOD,

o  “‘They have not walked in My statutes, nor observed My ordinances” 

o  “behold, I, even I, am against you, and I will execute judgments among you in the sight of the nations.’” (Eze 5:6-8).


So in all these statements, has Almighty God been defaming the Jews? Or did our Lord Jesus Christ ‒ who says of himself that he is the Truth ‒ lie in describing their religious leaders as “serpents” and a “brood of vipers”? Perhaps, in the coming kingdom of the Antichrist, the Jews will take God to court on the charge that he has defamed them in the Old Testament ‒ and take his Son to court as well, for having propagated lies about them in the New?


The future of Israel

The biblical passages quoted in this discourse are only a small part of the complaints that God has made about his people of Israel through the mouth of his prophets. The books of the prophets are actually full of this kind of stuff, and of the judgments which God will execute on this people. Only close study of the scriptures makes it possible to come to a correct estimate of the stubborn character of the people of Israel, starting with their exodus from Egypt and their wanderings in the desert (with the episode of the golden calf), and going on to their rejection and crucifixion of their Messiah, followed by their return to the land of Israel without God’s blessing in our own time.

But for all that we must not forget that God will again have mercy on this people, when they convert at the beginning of the Millennium and come to believe in our Lord Jesus Christ. But of course this offer on the part of God for salvation from their sins, through belief in the vicarious sacrifice of their Messiah, remains open to every individual Israeli, as it does to all the peoples of the world.

Whenever Israel turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away, because it is removed in Christ.

2Cor 3,14 But their minds were hardened; for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains unlifted, because it is removed in Christ. 3,15 But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; 3,16 but whenever Israel turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 2Cor 3,14-16;


But in our own days Israel is far removed from any conversion to our Lord Jesus Christ as the Son of God and their Messiah. Quite the reverse, as seen in the above documented evidence ‒ they even make it impossible for Christians in Israel to speak of Jesus Christ at all. And as we can learn from the Bible, this is not going to change until the beginning of the Millennium. All prophecies which accordingly speak of this conversion, and in the sequel of the forgiveness of sins, consecration and gathering of Israel by God (e.g. Isa 49:22; Jer 23:5-6 24:6-7 29:13-14 50:4-5; Eze 36:24-25 etc.), refer exclusively to the future Millennial Kingdom of Peace of the Son of God. And for this it is a condition that Jesus Christ has come again, and that the Jews have come to believe in him.

There is no salvation for Israel, unless they convert to Jesus Christ!


(See also Chapter 09: “The return home of the redeemed.”)


So when some preachers in the Christian congregations make repeated attempts to refer these passages to our times, and to the still unconverted Israel of today, this is patently an endeavor to pull the wool over the eyes of the brethren and to persuade them, on the basis of these temporally foreshortened biblical passages, that the Israel of the present day already represents the “saved people” of the prophecies ‒ with the aim of acquiring “Friends of Israel” by this form of wheeling and dealing. This kind of imposition is generally successful in situations where the brethren have little or no knowledge of the Bible ‒ or alternatively, where the leaders of the congregation concentrate on the study of the New Testament, so that the brethren have little knowledge of the Old Testament and the prophetic books.

This very ignorance, among Christians, is one of the reasons why denominations (Calvinists for the most part) deny the Millennial Kingdom of Peace of our Lord Jesus Christ altogether, because they refuse to allow the people of Israel any expectation of salvation and so deny the fulfillment of all prophecies referring to Israel in the Millennium. They like to see themselves as the “true Israel” and commandeer all the blessings referring to Israel for themselves (leaving the prophecies of judgment out of account, of course!). But the following biblical passage from Eze 37,26-28 is an excellent refutation of such false statements ‒ both, those that claim that these prophecies have already been fulfilled today, and those asserting that there is no Millennium at all:

The dwelling place of the LORD will be with them; and He will be their God, and they will be His people.

Eze 37,26 "I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant with them. And I will place them and multiply them, and will set My sanctuary in their midst forever. 37,27 "My dwelling place also will be with them; and I will be their God, and they will be My people.
37,28 "And the nations will know that I am the LORD who sanctifies Israel, when My sanctuary is in their midst forever."‘" Eze 37,26-28;


This now is just the beginning of the Millennium, where God concludes a covenant of peace with Israel, which will hold good for the entire one thousand years. In the Millennium, Israel will no longer make war (Isa 2:2-5 9:4-6; Hos 2:18-25; Mi 4:3-5; Zech 9:10) ‒ quite in contrast with the situation today!

(See also Chapter 10: “The Millennium.”)


Furthermore the Lord promises that his sanctuary will be among them, and that he himself will dwell among them. Today Israel has no sanctuary or temple at all ‒ and even the Israelis of today would hardly be inclined to believe that the Lord is dwelling among them. As for the heathen coming to know that God is the Lord who sanctifies Israel, that falls down in the view of the fact that today’s Israel is anything but sanctified and so the heathen of this world have not been able to find out anything about God either. The world picture continues to be chaotic.

So we can see that it would be completely absurd to deny these very concrete prophecies of the Millennium, and many others of similar import. But to see them as having been already fulfilled would be, in the light of facts, a complete denial of reality ‒ or else, a deliberate attempt to deceive. But what is unfortunately often overlooked by Christian commentators is this ‒ the conditio sine qua non for the acceptance of Israel by its God, and the fulfillment of all these prophecies, is that they must reverse what they did to their God nearly two thousand years ago, when they rejected his only Son and had him murdered. They must do this by giving up their obstinacy and converting to Jesus Christ.

But as the Old Testament and the books of the prophets of Israel show, the obstinacy and recalcitrance of Israel as an entire people will only be broken through further bitter trials of their God ‒ this is the only way they can come to conversion. Only when they are able to say to the Son of God on his Second Coming, “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!” and when they weep bitterly over him whom they have pierced on the cross (Rev 1:7; Mt 24:30; Zech 12:10) will the fate of Jacob be turned around, and the remnant of Israel will be reconciled with its God. In the Millennial Kingdom of Peace of their Messiah and with their King David, whom God will have raised from the dead (Jer 30:8-9; Eze 34:23; Hos 3:4-5), they can then embark on a glorious future as “the chief of the nations” (Jer 31:7; 2Sam 22:44; Ps 18:44).

Behold, your house is being left to you desolate until you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’"

Mt 23,32 "Fill up, then, the measure of the guilt of your fathers. 23,33 "You serpents, you brood of vipers, how will you escape the sentence of hell? 23,34 "Therefore, behold, I am sending you prophets and wise men and scribes; some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues, and persecute from city to city, 23,35 so that upon you may fall the guilt of all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar.

23,36 "Truly I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation. 23,37 "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling.
23,38 "Behold, your house is being left to you desolate! 23,39 "For I say to you, from now on you will not see Me until you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’" Mt 23,32-39;


(See also Discourse 08: “The gathering of Israel: already since 1948, or not to happen until the Last Days?”)

(Texts enclosed in a black frame are quoted from visitors to the site or other authors.)

(Does God not have a Son? / Commentary by a member of the believing Jewish community in Germany 00,  2010-08-07)

As a member of the believing Jewish community in Germany, I was recently referred to the article “God’s Judgment on his People” on your website. Although we generally avoid discussing our faith with Christians, I would not like to leave your scribbled lucubrations entirely unchallenged. Here you quote our prophets, but you restrict yourself to those statements which relate to Israel because of its disobedience at the time. This is not only lacking in objectivity, it also patently comes from the anti-semitic camp and so must be rejected. Above all because you present these statements in such a way that they militate against the Israel of today. You then quite embarrassingly avoid referring to all the other promises of our prophets that speak of a blessed future for the people of Israel. (…)

At the beginning of your article you refer to the great Jewish prayer “Shema Yisrael” from the book "Discourses" (Devarim) of the Torah, where we read, “Hear, O Israel! The Eternal is our God, the Eternal is one!” Just try reading this Old Testament passage (Deut 6,4) from the point of view of a Jew. Here we find it written, "The Eternal is our God, the Eternal is one" There is nothing here about a Son of God, who is supposed to be a God in his own right. There is nothing here about our being expected to worship a “Son”! And above all, we do not find it written here, “There is no salvation for Israel unless they convert to Jesus Christ!”. The words here are - “The Eternal is one”. You can turn it and twist it however your like, but you can’t read anything else into it, if you are at all honest. (…)

(Anonymous ‒ the visitor preferred to withhold his identity).



I would like to thank you for your comments and for your visit to Immanuel.at. You are perfectly right in saying that in the commentary above I focus on a small selection of those prophecies which are addressed to a disobedient Israel. And your further remark ‒ “because you present these statements in such a way that they militate against today’s Israel” ‒ is also completely correct. That, after all, is exactly the drift of this commentary ‒ to demonstrate that today’s Israel is not only just as disobedient as in that former time, but that they turned away their God altogether, almost two thousand years ago, so that since that time he has turned away from them.

In your following assertion, however ‒ “You then quite embarrassingly avoid referring to all the other promises of our prophets that speak of a blessed future for the people of Israel” ‒ you are actually off the mark. Under the heading “The future of Israel” at the end of the above commentary, I cite (admittedly in reference links, not in the form of full quotations) some of those promises of God which will make Israel a blessed people and “chief of the nations” in the Millennium. Only in the far distant Millennium (the thousand years kingdom of peace), however, not right now!

But as you surely must know, the book of Deuteronomy to which your refer, the 5th book of Moses, not only includes this “The Lord is one” but also gives us the following condition for the fulfillment of all these promises for the people of Israel:

If you diligently obey the LORD your God, all these blessings will come upon you.

Deut 28,1 "Now it shall be, if you diligently obey the LORD your God, being careful to do all His commandments which I command you today, the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth. 28,2 "All these blessings will come upon you and overtake you if you obey the LORD your God. Deut 28, 1- 2;


The commandments which the Almighty this day lays on his people, as reported in this passage (Deut 28,1), have just been listed one by one in the previous chapter (Deut 27,15-26):

‘Cursed is he who does not confirm the words of this law by doing them.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

Deut 27,15 ‘Cursed is the man who makes an idol or a molten image, an abomination to the LORD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret.’ And all the people shall answer and say, ‘Amen.’

27,16 ‘Cursed is he who dishonors his father or mother.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,17 ‘Cursed is he who moves his neighbor’s boundary mark.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,18 ‘Cursed is he who misleads a blind person on the road.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,19 ‘Cursed is he who distorts the justice due an alien, orphan, and widow.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,20 ‘Cursed is he who lies with his father’s wife, because he has uncovered his father’s skirt.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,21 ‘Cursed is he who lies with any animal.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,22 ‘Cursed is he who lies with his sister, the daughter of his father or of his mother.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,23 ‘Cursed is he who lies with his mother-in-law.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,24 ‘Cursed is he who strikes his neighbor in secret.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,25 ‘Cursed is he who accepts a bribe to strike down an innocent person.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’

27,26 ‘Cursed is he who does not confirm the words of this law by doing them.’ And all the people shall say, ‘Amen.’ Deut 27,15-26;


And here the verses Deut 27,17 and 19 are particularly interesting, where God commands “Cursed is he who moves his neighbor’s boundary mark! ...” and “Cursed is he who distorts the justice due an alien! ...”. In the occupation of Palestine by the Israelis in the year 1948 not just one alien, but an entire people was affected. And the Israelis have not only moved this boundary mark ‒ at the time they actually drove large parts of the Palestinian population out of their homeland. This means that two of these commandments, to which the people of Israel had committed itself in the sight of its God, have been broken already. When it comes to the commandment against taking bribes (see the condemnations of Presidents Ezer Weitzmann and Moshe Katzav and Prime Ministers Benjamin Netanjahu and Ehud Olmert) and that forbidding the shedding of innocent blood (shelling of the UNIFIL support point, with the murder of four innocent UN officers, on 25 July 2006), the less said the better.

So in Deut 28,15 God goes on to prophesy to his people Israel the other side of these promises of blessings:

If you do not obey the LORD your God, all these curses will come upon you and overtake you.

Deut 28,15 "But it shall come about, if you do not obey the LORD your God, to observe to do all His commandments and His statutes with which I charge you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you. Deut 28,15;


And following this, God then (Deut 28:16-69) lists all those curses which will come upon Israel if they do not obey the above commandments of the Lord (Deut 27,15-26).


I think we are agreed that these prophecies, both the blessings and the curses, have validity not just for certain periods of Israel’s history, but that these are the commandments of God to Israel from the day on which Israel became the people of the Lord its God (Deut 27:9) and continuing for all time. Given these premises, it should be enough just to establish whether Israel is following and fulfilling the commandments laid on them by God in the present, in order to demonstrate whether Israel can look forward to the blessings of God today or not.


And this is exactly what I have tried to do in my above commentary, by setting various current events in Israel alongside the prophetic texts. Whether that can be described as anti-Semitism, as you write, I invite the reader to judge. It is however conspicuously evident that the Zionist Jews, when confronted by any statements of opinion by people who think differently from them, fetch the anti-Semitism cudgel out of that very same corner in which you are trying to place me.

You then come to an issue which of course is not a new topic of discussion between Jews and Christians ‒ namely, the question whether God has a Son. To avoid putting an unnecessary strain on the atmosphere of the discussion, I would like to leave this question in the air for a moment and instead respond to your challenge of just taking a look at these matters from the point of view of a Jew. And here I would like to go further back in your scriptures, to the second book of Moses (Exodus) ‒ to Israel’s exodus from Egypt and the Passover festival, the main festival of the Jewish religion.

Israel's exodus from Egypt.

To make it easier for those unfamiliar with the Bible to understand what is going on, I would like to give a short explanation here of the origin of this Passover feast. For the Israelites to get permission to reside in Egypt, they were compelled by Pharaoh to perform forced labor. Israel had already been 430 years in Egypt under this regime when Moses came into the country, and called on the Israelites in the name of their God to withdraw from this unjust servitude. It was then Aaron and Moses to whom the Lord gave the task, in Ex 6,26, of bringing the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt.

Bring out the sons of Israel from the land of Egypt according to their hosts.

Ex 6,26 It was the same Aaron and Moses to whom the LORD said, "Bring out the sons of Israel from the land of Egypt according to their hosts." 6,27 They were the ones who spoke to Pharaoh king of Egypt about bringing out the sons of Israel from Egypt; it was the same Moses and Aaron. Ex 6,26-27;


Aaron and Moses visited Pharaoh nine times in all, acting on God’s instructions, to obtain his consent to the exodus of their people from Egypt. When Pharaoh refused for the ninth time to let the Israelites leave Egypt, God promised that at midnight he would bring about the death of every firstborn male creature in Egypt ‒ from the firstborn son of Pharaoh himself to the firstborn son of the most insignificant slave, and including the firstborn of all domestic animals.

The Israelites however were instructed by God (in Ex 12,5-8) that on this day, which was the 14th day of the first month (Nisan), each family was to slaughter an unblemished male a year old, either of the sheep or of the goats, “between the two evenings”. According to the Jewish divisions of the day, whereby a day starts and finishes at 6.00 pm, the time referred to is that between sunset (6.00 pm) and the complete fall of night (of the first evening or eve of the Passover) through to the second evening, on the next day from today’s point of view ‒ i.e. the time between the sun’s descending in the sky (3.00 pm) and sunset at 6.00 pm. They were then to smear the blood of the slaughtered lamb on the two doorposts and the lintel, so that the angel of the Lord would recognize these houses and spare them from the plague. The meat however was to be eaten on the same night, roasted with fire, along with unleavened bread (maze bread) and bitter herbs.

You shall kill it on the fourteenth day of the month and take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts.

Ex 12,5 ‘Your lamb shall be an unblemished male a year old; you may take it from the sheep or from the goats. 12,6 ‘You shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month, then the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel is to kill it at twilight. 12,7 ‘Moreover, they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses in which they eat it. 12,8 ‘They shall eat the flesh that same night, roasted with fire, and they shall eat it with unleavened bread and bitter herbs. Ex 12, 5- 8;

The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live.

Ex 12,12 ‘For I will go through the land of Egypt on that night, and will strike down all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, both man and beast; and against all the gods of Egypt I will execute judgments ‒ I am the LORD. 12,13 ‘The blood shall be a sign for you on the houses where you live; and when I see the blood I will pass over you, and no plague will befall you to destroy you when I strike the land of Egypt. Ex 12,12-13;

In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty-first day of the month at evening.

Ex 12,17 ‘You shall also observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt; therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as a permanent ordinance. 12,18 ‘In the first month, on the fourteenth day of the month at evening, you shall eat unleavened bread, until the twenty-first day of the month at evening. Ex 12,17-18;

Now it came about at midnight that the LORD struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt.

Ex 12,29 Now it came about at midnight that the LORD struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of cattle. 12,30 Pharaoh arose in the night, he and all his servants and all the Egyptians, and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was no home where there was not someone dead. 12,31 Then he called for Moses and Aaron at night and said, "Rise up, get out from among my people, both you and the sons of Israel; and go, worship the LORD, as you have said. Ex 12,29-31;


From the next day, the 15th day of Nisan, the Israelites were then to eat only unleavened bread for a period of seven days. This is the Feast of Unleavened Bread (the Passover), to commemorate Israel’s exodus from Egypt, which started with the slaughter of a male lamb in the evening hours of the first day (the day of preparation for Passover, known today as the Seder meal) on the 14th of Nisan, and then lasted for a further seven days, up to the 21st day of the month, and which is still celebrated in Israel at the present day.

So the blood of the lamb preserved the Israelites from the wrath of God, which had killed all the firstborn of Egypt. And the meat of the lamb was to give them strength for the march into the desert which they started on the following morning. So God saved the Israelites from the hand of their oppressor, and commanded them to observe this day through all their future generations.

Therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as a permanent ordinance.

Ex 12,14 ‘Now this day will be a memorial to you, and you shall celebrate it as a feast to the LORD; throughout your generations you are to celebrate it as a permanent ordinance. 12,15 ‘Seven days you shall eat unleavened bread, but on the first day you shall remove leaven from your houses; for whoever eats anything leavened from the first day until the seventh day, that person shall be cut off from Israel. 12,16 ‘On the first day you shall have a holy assembly, and another holy assembly on the seventh day; no work at all shall be done on them, except what must be eaten by every person, that alone may be prepared by you. 12,17 ‘You shall also observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread, for on this very day I brought your hosts out of the land of Egypt; therefore you shall observe this day throughout your generations as a permanent ordinance. Ex 12,14-17;


Jesus' last Passover before his death.

And it was this same Passover feast which Jesus and his disciples celebrated in Jerusalem. This was the Lord’s Supper or “evening meal” (“Seder meal” in Hebrew) at which Jesus said goodbye to the disciples. And here there are some interesting parallels with the exodus from Egypt, which it would be worth taking a closer look at. In the course of the 13th day of Nisan, Jesus asked Peter and John to find a room where they could prepare the meal with the slaughtered lamb for the Twelve.

And Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, "Go and prepare the Passover for us, so that we may eat it."

Lk 22,7 Then came the first day of Unleavened Bread on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. 22,8 And Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, "Go and prepare the Passover for us, so that we may eat it." 22,9 They said to Him, "Where do You want us to prepare it?" 22,10 And He said to them, "When you have entered the city, a man will meet you carrying a pitcher of water; follow him into the house that he enters. 22,11 "And you shall say to the owner of the house, ‘The Teacher says to you, "Where is the guest room in which I may eat the Passover with My disciples?"‘ 22,12 "And he will show you a large, furnished upper room; prepare it there." Lk 22, 7-12;


On the evening of this day, perhaps around 6.00 pm (according to Jewish time divisions, this would then be the start of the 14th of Nisan), the Lord sat down at table with the disciples and revealed to them that this was the last time that he would eat this Passover with them.

For I say to you, I shall never again eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.

Lk 22,13 And they left and found everything just as He had told them; and they prepared the Passover. 22,14 When the hour had come, He reclined at the table, and the apostles with Him. 22,15 And He said to them, "I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; 22,16 for I say to you, I shall never again eat it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God." Lk 22,13-16;


And here Jesus now adds the passing remark, in Lk 22,16, “... until it (the Passover) is fulfilled in the kingdom of God”. This is the first time that we have been given to suspect that the Passover is not just a celebration of the exodus of Israel and their being saved by their God from Egyptian servitude, but that this Passover was always meant as a prophecy as well ‒ a prophecy which now, with the death of Jesus, has been fulfilled. This suspicion is then reinforced by Jesus’ further statements in the course of the meal.

This is My body which is given for you; This cup is the new covenant in My blood which is poured out for you.

Lk 22,19 And when He had taken some bread and given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them, saying, "This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me." 22,20 And in the same way He took the cup after they had eaten, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in My blood which is poured out for you. Lk 22,19-20;


Just as in Egypt the blood of the lamb preserved the people of Israel from the wrath of God and as the slaughtered lamb strengthened them, so too the death and the blood of Jesus has saved all sinners from the wrath of God. In order to propitiate the justice of God, he took our sins on himself and suffered vicarious punishment for us. This is the deeper significance of the Jewish Passover feast ‒ the prophecy of the saving sacrifice of atonement through the death of the Servant of God - Jesus Christ. John the Baptist, who had never seen Jesus before he appeared, was moved by the Holy Spirit to call him “the Lamb of God” (in Jn 1,29) and “the Son of God” (in Jn 1,34).

Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! I myself have seen, and have testified that this is the Son of God.

Jn 1,29 The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 1,30 "This is He on behalf of whom I said, ‘After me comes a Man who has a higher rank than I, for He existed before me.’ 1,31 "I did not recognize Him, but so that He might be manifested to Israel, I came baptizing in water." 1,32 John testified saying, "I have seen the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven, and He remained upon Him. 1,33 "I did not recognize Him, but He who sent me to baptize in water said to me, ‘He upon whom you see the Spirit descending and remaining upon Him, this is the One who baptizes in the Holy Spirit.’ 1,34 "I myself have seen, and have testified that this is the Son of God." Jn 1,29-34;


But John the Baptist wasn’t just anybody. At his birth, the Holy Spirit had said of him:

And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; For you will go on before the LORD.

Lk 1,76 "And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; For you will go on before the LORD to prepare His ways; 1,77 To give to His people the knowledge of salvation By the forgiveness of their sins, 1,78 Because of the tender mercy of our God, With which the Sunrise from on high will visit us, 1,79 To shine upon those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, To guide our feet into the way of peace." Lk 1,76-79;


And Jesus too said of him that he was more than a prophet. He is the one of whom it is written in the Book of the Prophet Malachi, “Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me” (Mal 3,1). This, now, is extremely interesting, inasmuch as this very prophecy was always understood in Israel ‒ correctly, as we know today ‒ as referring to the coming of the Messiah. This was backed up first of all by a prophecy from the prophet Isaiah, where it is written, “A voice is calling, Clear the way for the LORD in the wilderness; Make smooth in the desert a highway for our God” (Isa 40:3; Deut 18:15-18), and secondly by another prophecy from Malachi, where this messenger of the Lord is identified with the prophet Elijah.

Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD.

Mal 4,4 "Remember the law of Moses My servant, even the statutes and ordinances which I commanded him in Horeb for all Israel. 4,5 "Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD. 4,6 "He will restore the hearts of the fathers to their children and the hearts of the children to their fathers, so that I will not come and smite the land with a curse." Mal 4, 4- 6;


This is also the reason why the scribes of Jesus’ day repeatedly asked John whether he was “the prophet”, the Elijah. But John quite honestly said that he was not, and prophesied in his turn: “As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire” (Mt 3,11). And when the Jews then asked Jesus as well whether John was the prophet Elijah, he announced to them that John was the very one foretold in Malachi’s prophecy: “Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me” (Mal 3,1).

For all the prophets and the Law prophesied until John. And if you are willing to accept it, John himself is Elijah who was to come.

Mt 11,9 "But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and one who is more than a prophet. 11,10 "This is the one about whom it is written, ‘Behold, I send My messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you’ 11,11 "Truly I say to you, among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist! Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. 11,12 "From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and violent men take it by force. 11,13 "For all the prophets and the Law prophesied until John. 11,14 "And if you are willing to accept it, John himself is Elijah who was to come. Mt 11,9-14;


But as Scripture shows us, the Jews were not prepared to accept it. And here, from our point of view today, it is completely incomprehensible how even the scribes in Israel, who must after all have been thoroughly familiar with all these prophecies, should have failed to examine the scriptures ‒ remaining fixed in their prejudice instead, and so rejecting Jesus. Though Jesus himself, of course, gave frequent indications that what had been written about him through the prophets would also be fulfilled in him.

All things which are written through the prophets about the Son of Man will be accomplished.

Lk 18,31 Then He took the twelve aside and said to them, "Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and all things which are written through the prophets about the Son of Man will be accomplished. 18,32 "For He will be handed over to the Gentiles, and will be mocked and mistreated and spit upon, 18,33 and after they have scourged Him, they will kill Him; and the third day He will rise again." 18,34 But the disciples understood none of these things, and the meaning of this statement was hidden from them, and they did not comprehend the things that were said. Lk 18,31-34;

How then will the Scriptures be fulfilled, which say that it must happen this way?

Mt 26,51 And behold, one of those who were with Jesus reached and drew out his sword, and struck the slave of the high priest and cut off his ear. 52 Then Jesus said to him, "Put your sword back into its place; for all those who take up the sword shall perish by the sword. 26,53 "Or do you think that I cannot appeal to My Father, and He will at once put at My disposal more than twelve legions of angels? 26,54 "How then will the Scriptures be fulfilled, which say that it must happen this way?" Mt 26,51-54;


But from our point of view today, all the other prophecies in the Old Testament as well can be understood as referring to the Servant of God. For example, in the book of Isaiah:

But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; And by His scourging we are healed.

Isa 53,3 He was despised and forsaken of men, A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; And like one from whom men hide their face He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.
53,4 Surely our griefs He Himself bore, And our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, Smitten of God, and afflicted.
53,5 But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed. Isa 53, 3- 5;

He was oppressed and He was afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter.

Isa 53,6 All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all To fall on Him. 53,7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth. Isa 53, 6-7;

By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, as He will bear their iniquities.

Isa 53,8 By oppression and judgment He was taken away; And as for His generation, who considered That He was cut off out of the land of the living For the transgression of my people, to whom the stroke was due? 53,9 His grave was assigned with wicked men, Yet He was with a rich man in His death, Because He had done no violence, Nor was there any deceit in His mouth. 53,10 But the LORD was pleased To crush Him, putting Him to grief; If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, And the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand. 53,11 As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, As He will bear their iniquities. 53,12 Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great, And He will divide the booty with the strong; Because He poured out Himself to death, And was numbered with the transgressors; Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, And interceded for the transgressors. Isa 53, 8-12;


Or consider, as well, these other prophecies from Isaiah:

The LORD called Me from the womb; From the body of My mother He named Me.

Isa 49,1 Listen to Me, O islands, And pay attention, you peoples from afar. The LORD called Me from the womb; From the body of My mother He named Me.
2 He has made My mouth like a sharp sword, In the shadow of His hand He has concealed Me; And He has also made Me a select arrow, He has hidden Me in His quiver. Isa 49, 1- 2;


- which are confirmed by what we find stated in the New Testament:

His name was then called Jesus, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.

Lk 2,21 And when eight days had passed, before His circumcision, His name was then called Jesus, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb. 2,22 And when the days for their purification according to the law of Moses were completed, they brought Him up to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord 2,23 (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, "every firstborn male that opens the womb shall be called holy to the LORD"), 2,24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what was said in the Law of the Lord, "a pair of turteldoves or two young pigeons." 2,25 And there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; and this man was righteous and devout, looking for the consolation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 2,26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. 2,27 And he came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to carry out for Him the custom of the Law, 2,28 then he took Him into his arms, and blessed God, and said, 2,29 "Now Lord, You are releasing Your bond-servant to depart in peace, According to Your word; 2,30 For my eyes have seen Your salvation, 2,31 Which You have prepared in the presence of all peoples, 2,32 a light of revelation to the gentiles, And the glory of Your people Israel." 2,33 And His father and mother were amazed at the things which were being said about Him. 2,34 And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary His mother, "Behold, this Child is appointed for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and for a sign to be opposed. Lk 2,21-34;


Even the designation of Jesus in the above passage (Lk 2,32) as “a light of revelation to the gentiles” is something we find repeatedly in the Old Testament:

I will appoint you as a light to the nations, to open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the dungeon and those who dwell in darkness from the prison.

Isa 42,6 "I am the LORD, I have called you in righteousness, I will also hold you by the hand and watch over you, And I will appoint you as a covenant to the people, As a light to the nations, 42,7 To open blind eyes, To bring out prisoners from the dungeon And those who dwell in darkness from the prison. Isa 42, 6- 7;

I will also make You a light of the nations So that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth.

Isa 49,5 And now says the LORD, who formed Me from the womb to be His Servant, To bring Jacob back to Him, so that Israel might be gathered to Him (For I am honored in the sight of the LORD, And My God is My strength), 49,6 He says, "It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant To raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the preserved ones of Israel; I will also make You a light of the nations So that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth." 49,7 Thus says the LORD, the Redeemer of Israel and its Holy One, To the despised One, To the One abhorred by the nation, To the Servant of rulers, "Kings will see and arise, Princes will also bow down, Because of the LORD who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel who has chosen You." Isa 49, 5- 7;


But alongside all these statements, it was above all the events of that Passover before the death of Jesus that demonstrated that Jesus was the promised Servant of God. So Isaiah tells us in the passage referred to earlier (Isa 53,7):

Isa 53,7 He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth. Isa 53, 7;


The evangelist Matthew confirms this Old Testament prophecy in his account of Jesus’ interrogation by the high priest Caiaphas, where the members of the Sanhedrin spat in the Lord’s face and struck him in the face with their fists. And at the hearing before Pilate, where Jesus remained silent and said nothing, Pilate had him flogged.

Then they spat in His face and beat Him with their fists; and others slapped Him.

Mt 26,65 Then the high priest tore his robes and said, "He has blasphemed! What further need do we have of witnesses? Behold, you have now heard the blasphemy; 26,66 what do you think?" They answered, "He deserves death!" 26,67 Then they spat in His face and beat Him with their fists; and others slapped Him, 26,68 and said, "Prophesy to us, You Christ; who is the one who hit You?"  Mt 26,65-68;

And He did not answer him with regard to even a single charge, so the governor was quite amazed.

Mt 27,11 Now Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor questioned Him, saying, "Are You the King of the Jews?" And Jesus said to him, "It is as you say." 27,12 And while He was being accused by the chief priests and elders, He did not answer. 27,13 Then Pilate said to Him, "Do You not hear how many things they testify against You?" 27,14 And He did not answer him with regard to even a single charge, so the governor was quite amazed. Mt 27,11-14;


Having been accused by the high priests and condemned by Pilate, Jesus was crucified and died on the cross at the ninth hour, in other words around 3.00 pm.

About the ninth hour Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spiritf.

Mt 27,45 Now from the sixth hour darkness fell upon all the land until the ninth hour. 27,46 About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, "Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?" that is, "My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?" 27,47 And some of those who were standing there, when they heard it, began saying, "This man is calling for Elijah." 27,48 Immediately one of them ran, and taking a sponge, he filled it with sour wine and put it on a reed, and gave Him a drink. 27,49 But the rest of them said, "Let us see whether Elijah will come to save Him." 27,50 And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit. Mt 27,45-50;


When we now look at the commandment of God about the slaughtering of the Paschal lamb in Ex 12,6, we are told there that the lamb should be slaughtered on the 14th day of Nissan “between the two evenings”. So this is the time between the first evening, after the starting of the day with sunset (6.00 pm) until the complete fall of night, and the second evening on the next day from today’s point of view ‒ i.e. the time between the sun’s descending in the sky (3.00 pm) and sunset at 6.00 pm. And right at the end of this time between these two evenings, at about the ninth hour, 3.00 pm, is when the death of Jesus occurred. So this Lamb of God was offered as a sacrifice pleasing to God and without blemish, fully in accordance with all the requirements of the Mosaic rite.

And yet another Old Testament prophecy came to fulfillment in the death of Jesus. In Isa 53,9 it is prophesied that the Servant of God would find a grave among godless men, and would be with a rich man in his death.

Isa 53,9 His grave was assigned with wicked men, Yet He was with a rich man in His death, Because He had done no violence, Nor was there any deceit in His mouth. Isa 53, 9;


This prophecy too finds fulfillment in Matthew’s account:

A rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, laid the body in his own new tomb.

Mt 27,57 When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who himself had also become a disciple of Jesus. 27,58 This man went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus. Then Pilate ordered it to be given to him. 27,59 And Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, 27,60 and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock; and he rolled a large stone against the entrance of the tomb and went away. Mt 27,57-60;


When Jesus died on the cross between criminals, a rich member of the Council, Joseph of Arimathea, got permission from Pilate to have him taken down from the cross and laid in the tomb. He then had the body laid in a new tomb which he had recently acquired and buried just provisionally, in view of the short time available, with a view to carrying out a ritually proper burial later, after the two Sabbaths.

(See also Discourse 87: “The Turin Shroud ‒ The ‘Holy Week’.”)


There are undoubtedly still more prophecies from the Old Testament which we could bring forward in this connection (Gen 22:1-2; Num 21:7-9; Jn 3:14-17; Dan 9:26 etc.), but we are concerned here just to highlight the most significant connections.

As would naturally be expected, however, we find the most important and the clearest statements about the Son of God in the New Testament. When Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, the heavens opened and the voice of God gave public acknowledgement of his Son:

This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased.

Mt 3,17 and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased." Mt 3,17;


And at the Transfiguration of Jesus likewise, when he went up a mountain with Peter and the apostle John, where Moses and Elijah appeared before the eyes of the two disciples and spoke with Jesus, again the voice of God came from the sky and gave further confirmation:

This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well-pleased; listen to Him!"

Mt 17,5 While he was still speaking, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and behold, a voice out of the cloud said, "This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well-pleased; listen to Him!" 17,6 When the disciples heard this, they fell face down to the ground and were terrified. Mt 17, 5- 6;


And here it seems important to recall that both confirmations of the Son by the Father were addressed to the Jews ‒ first of all to John the Baptist, that is, and then to Peter and the apostle John. That voice which here twice testifies to Jesus as the beloved Son of God is the same voice which had designated Israel as God’s people in Deut 27,9.

And the Father who sent Me, He has testified of Me.

Jn 5,37 "And the Father who sent Me, He has testified of Me. You have neither heard His voice at any time nor seen His form. 5,38 "You do not have His word abiding in you, for you do not believe Him whom He sent. Jn 5,37-38;


So if the Jews today assert that Jesus is not the Son of God, it follows that Israel cannot be the people of God either.


The consequences for Israel.

Following this biblical demonstration of proof that Jesus of Nazareth was the Messiah of the Jews and the Son of God, I would like here to give a brief account of the consequences for the Jews which follow from their having rejected the Son of God, condemned him and handed him over to be crucified.

First of all, obviously, we can point to the biblical consequence that as a result of their rejection of the Messiah, the Old Testament promise that Israel would be saved by their Messiah could no longer apply. The Israelites have cut the ground from under their own feet, as we might say. But as we will see shortly, this was not the worst of it.

On the other hand, though, this downfall of the people of God of the Jews became the rise of another people ‒ the people of God of the heathen, the Christians. If Israel had not rejected its Messiah, there would have been no Christian religion and no salvation through grace.

But Israel itself, through its rejection of the Son at that time, has also lost its God and has been repudiated by God. As a result, the Israelites have been a people without God for practically two thousand years. They are God-less. This was also the reason why, in accordance with Jesus’ prophecy in Mt 24:1-2, Jerusalem and the Temple were laid waste by the Romans in the year 70 AD and the people of Israel were subsequently driven into exile.

Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; 

1Jn 2,23 Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also. 1Jn 2,23;

Jn 15,23 "He who hates Me hates My Father also. Jn 15:23;

No one comes to the Father but through Me.

Jn 14,6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. Jn 14, 6;


But as a result Israel is now faced with another very serious problem. As the entire Old Testament tells us, any violation of God’s commandments is sin and will be punished by God with the death of the sinner. The Israelites’ God did allow them, in Old Testament times, the possibility of having their sins forgiven through animal sacrifice (Lev 4 and 5). But in order to perform this animal sacrifice in conformity with ritual, and so with “legal effect” so to speak, according to the laws of the Torah it is absolutely essential that the sacrifice be made on the altar of burnt offerings at the Temple in Jerusalem.

Now, however, the Israelis have had, ever since that time, neither a Temple nor a sacrificial altar in Jerusalem. So for that reason, they have had no possibility, for nearly two thousand years, of having their sins forgiven by God. And this is just what the Son of God prophesied to them, while he was still alive:

Unless you believe that I am He (the Messiah), you will die in your sins.

Jn 8,22 So the Jews were saying, "Surely He will not kill Himself, will He, since He says, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come’?" 8,23 And He was saying to them, "You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world. 8,24 "Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins." Jn 8,22-24;


The statement “You will die in your sins”, however, has a fatal consequence: the Jews did not know at the time (and sadly refuse to acknowledge it to the present day, because they do not recognize or read the New Testament) that in rejecting their Messiah they were not only rejecting the Son of God, but at the same time rejecting the judge of the whole world and handing him over to death on the cross. At the Last Judgment, then, at the end of the world, not the Eternal but his Son will sit on the throne of judgment and judge in absolute righteousness.

For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son.

Jn 5,22 "For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son, 5,23 so that all will honor the Son even as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him. 5,24 "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life. Jn 5,22-24;


And he will say to these unconverted Israelites, “Depart from me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels!” ‒ for they have not only rejected the least of his Christian brothers, but have condemned and executed the highest judge of all personally.

Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels.

Mt 25,40 "The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’ 25,41 "Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; Mt 25,40-41;


The reason for this stubborn attitude of the Jews is partly to be found in their holy scriptures (the Talmud and the Gemara). Here we find thousands of interpretations by hundreds of rabbis. They interpret the scriptures with the help of tools like cabbalism, gematrics and all sorts of senseless methods for explaining the Bible, rather than interpreting it in the simplest and only correct way ‒ namely, to explain Scripture with the help of Scripture. This was what Paul of Tarsus did, almost two thousand years ago, in his letter to the Christians in Corinth. And as Paul writes in this letter, the Jews have a veil over their heart when they read the five books of Moses.

But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart.

2Cor 3,15 But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; 3,16 but whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 2Cor 3,15-16;


And so it remains to this day, for this veil cannot be removed unless they convert to Jesus Christ. So in answer to the call in the comments of the above quoted visitor, “Hear, O Israel: the Eternal has no son!”, we as rightly believing Christians are obliged to respond, “Wake up, Israel! Your God has abandoned you”.

So since all these prophecies of Scripture must be fulfilled, Israel as a people can only reconvert to its God after the Second Coming of its Messiah, our Lord Jesus Christ. Only when they say to the Son of God on his return, “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” and when they “look on him whom they have pierced on the cross and mourn for him” (Zech 12:10; Rev 1:7) will the destiny of Jacob be changed, and the remnant of Israel will once again be reconciled with its God. They can then look forward to a glorious future as the “chief of the nations” (Jer 31:7; 2Sam 22:44; Ps 18:44) in the Millennial Kingdom of Peace of their Messiah, under their King David who will be raised again by God (Jer 30:8-9; Eze 34:23; Hos 3:4-5).

Behold, your house is being left to you desolate until you say, ‘blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’

Mt 23,32 "Fill up, then, the measure of the guilt of your fathers. 23,33 "You serpents, you brood of vipers, how will you escape the sentence of hell? 23,34 "Therefore, behold, I am sending you prophets and wise men and scribes; some of them you will kill and crucify, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues, and persecute from city to city, 23,35 so that upon you may fall the guilt of all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah, the son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the temple and the altar.

23,36 "Truly I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation. 23,37 "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling. 23,38 "Behold, your house is being left to you desolate! 23,39 "For I say to you, from now on you will not see Me until you say, ‘blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’" Mt 23,32-39;


But even if Israel as a people will not admit its guilt, will refuse to acknowledge its guilt and so will not convert until the Second Coming of the Lord, God in his grace has still left them an alternative. Like any other person in this world, so each individual Israeli can avert this curse from himself and his family, and by taking just one step recover the blessings of his God this very day ‒ just by taking the step to believe in Jesus Christ and by coming to believe that at that time, almost two thousand years ago, the death of the Lord at this Passover feast of their ancestors was the vicarious sacrifice for the sin of all mankind, and for their sins as well. Then God will forgive them their sins, and then too this veil will be lifted from their hearts and they will finally come to understand the words of Moses correctly.

Now of course I am aware that any amount of argument, explanation and analysis is useless and will fail to have any effect, unless the person addressed actually himself has the wish to recognize the truth about God and about his actions. And seeing that the Israelites, as Paul writes, have a veil over their hearts when they read Moses, it is certainly far from easy for these realizations to penetrate their awareness. But when we are told in Scripture that the angel of God in heaven rejoices more over a single sinner who repents than over 99 righteous persons who have no need of repentance (Lk 15:7-10), the angels will undoubtedly rejoice more over one Jew who converts than over 99 converted heathen.

Please do not misunderstand me here. I wouldn’t want, on any account, to convert a Jew to Christianity! ‒ for the simple reason that it just is not possible. It is one of the fundamental principles of the Christian faith that every individual must decide for himself or herself whether or not to believe in the Son of God. And they must then adhere to this faith for the whole length of their lives (Hebr 3:6 6:4-6). There are no “born again” Christians who “cannot be lost”. That is wishful thinking, a pious fairy tale!

What I am aiming for here, however, is to make it clear to people that it is reality ‒ the reality of the past and that of today ‒ which shows us that this path is the only correct one. There is no alternative for the Jews, any more than for all other human beings, up to the Second Coming of the Lord but to accept faith in salvation by grace through Jesus Christ.

(See also Discourse 85: “True and false rebirth.”)


Here, be it noted, it is not a matter of receiving “eternal life”. Every human being has been created by God for eternal life, for an eternal existence, and has already had eternal life since birth. The important question is where, after our resurrection, we will spend this eternal life ‒ with God, under his love and protection, or in separation from God for all eternity, with weeping and gnashing of teeth in rage over the fact that we have rejected the only possibility for being saved from this situation while we were still alive, and now cannot ever make up for it subsequently (Mt 8:11-12; Lk 13:26-28).

(See also Discourse 96: “Why believe?”)


So in speaking to an upright Jew who really loves God with all his heart and all his soul and all his might, we can only give the following advice: just give your heart a jog, and go into a room where you can be undisturbed for the next half an hour and speak there in your spirit with the Eternal, with your God, and ask him to give you wisdom and understanding so that you may recognize the truth, the real truth. I am convinced that if you do this with a genuinely upright heart, the angels will soon be rejoicing over another convert from the people of Israel.

Incidentally ‒ in the confession of faith of the Jews given in Deut 6,4: “Hear, O Israel! The Eternal (YHWH) is our God, the Eternal is one!”, in the expression “YHWH, our God” the Hebrew word for God (Elohim) is actually a plural, so that the literal translation would be “YHWH, our gods”. An excellent analysis of the background to this may be found at http://www.amzi.org/html/schma_israel.html


Israel in the light of the Bible.


Based on the Old Testament

God has completely taken away his compassion from the house of Israel (Hos 1:6). They are no longer his people (Hos 1:9). Only the house of Judah will be saved by the Lord. Not by war, however, but by his Spirit (Hos 1:7). And only in the Millennium, when the Son of God has entered on his thousand years rule on earth (Hos 1:10; 2,18 Eze 34:25; Isa 2:4), will the Lord once more accept Israel as his people (Hos 2:23; Jer 31:27-28).


Based on the New Testament

It is God’s will that we should listen to his Son (Mt 17:5). This same Son of God has told us that anyone who rejects him rejects God as well (1Jn 2:23; Lk 10:16; Jn 5:22-23. 15:23). The people of Israel today deny the Son of God and abuse him as an impostor and blasphemer. As a result of this denial of the Son, Israel has also rejected the Father and so is a God-less people. (Jn 8:24)


The "Friends of Israel" in the Christian congregations are thus selling their birthright as Disciples of Christ for the lentil stew of a vicarious agent of godless impostors. – For Israel there is no spiritual conversion to their God, and no return to their homeland willed by God, unless they convert to Jesus Christ!! (Mt 23:38-39; Gal 5:4) - (See also Discourse 111)




The "Israel movement" in the Christian congregations. /    Christian Evangelical Zionism - Part 1, Discourse 101

The "Mitternachtsruf" ["Call at Midnight"] – a call in the wrong direction? /    Discourse 1011

Looking up the biblical quotations of the “Friends of Israel” in the Bible. /    Part 2, Discourse 1012

Report from the camp of the "Israel movement". /    Part 3, Discourse 1013

The Jewish Anti-Defamation League rewrites New Testament. /    Part 4, Discourse 1014

The Foundation of the State of Israel in 1948 prophesied in the Old Testament! /    Part 6, Discourse 1016