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Should We Bless Israel

By Justin Johnson

In Genesis 12:3 God gave the fathers of Israel a special promise that they would be the channel of God’s blessing and curse to the world:

“And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” – Genesis 12:3

If anyone was to be blessed they must needs bless Israel, and if anyone did not they would then be cursed. Israel was the channel of God’s judgment and reward toward the earth.

People, kings, and nations were blessed or cursed depending on how they responded to the channel of God’s blessing: Israel. Consider Abimelech, Rahab, the Edomites (Obadiah), or the faithful centurion who needed a healing in Jesus’ earthly ministry.

Jesus was not sent to Gentiles (Matt 15:24), but listen how this Gentile centurion is described as blessing Israel:

“And when they came to Jesus, they besought him instantly, saying, That he was worthy for whom he should do this: For he loveth our nation, and he hath built us a synagogue.” – Luke 7:4-5

I still get letters in the mail from Jewish fundraisers based on this verse.

When most of the Bible describes Israel as the channel of God’s blessing it is easy to assume that God is doing the same thing as he always has done. Sincere Christians continue to bless Israel according to Genesis 12:3 and seek their favor in order to receive God’s blessing.

This would be a big mistake and a failure to rightly divide the word of truth.

Our Blessing Today Through Christ not Israel

The problem with trying to obey Genesis 12:3 is that it ignores the way you access the riches of God’s grace according to the mystery of Christ.

According to the mystery, Israel is fallen and has no spiritual standing with God in this dispensation (Rom 11:11). They are counted in unbelief, all in sin, like the Gentiles (Rom3:9; Rom 11:32).

In the church, the body of Christ, there is neither Jew nor Greek. Being Israel does not give anyone a closer access to God or his blessings in this dispensation (Gal 3:28).

Paul describes in Ephesians 2 that though Israel was the channel and access to God’s blessing in time past, but now our access to God and his blessings come through the body and blood of Christ.

“But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. “ – Ephesians 2:13

“For through him [Jesus Christ] we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.” – Ephesians 2:18

If there were not a single Israelite in the body of Christ, every member would still have all spiritual blessings in Christ (Eph 1:3). God has changed the channel of his blessing from the nation of Israel to the body of Christ (Eph 3:1-6).

God be praised there are Jews who have been saved by the gospel of grace, but blessing Israel as a nation today ignores God’s will and blesses unsaved men because of their flesh (Gal 5:13; Gal 6:15).

The Promised Curse

God’s channel of blessing has changed, but also how punishments are dealt.

The promise of Genesis 12:3 includes not only a blessing but a curse. In Genesis 12:3 if anyone fails to bless Israel they they are cursed by God.

Popular pastors who fail to see the mystery try to place our country under a curse if we do not politically endorse the Zionist movement. Fortunately, not all dispensationalists have so mishandled the word of God.

In contrast to Genesis 12:3, Paul says that Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law:

“Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us” – Galatians 3:13

“That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ” – Galatians 3:14

The body of Christ cannot be placed under a curse any more by God’s grace.

Putting a curse on those who do not bless Israel is tantamount to calling Christ accursed and putting the body of Christ back under the curse for which Christ died.

God forbid. Our glory is not the nation of Israel, but in the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ through which we receive every spiritual blessing and redemption from every curse (Gal 6:14).

How to Bless Israel

The mystery of Christ describes how God’s blessings can come upon anyone despite Israel’s fall, and how curses can be removed from sinners who don’t deserve such deliverance. The mystery is revealed in the grace of Christ.

Today all men are offered salvation freely, not through covenants, a special nation, or the law, but through the finished work of Christ (1 Tim 2:4).

Though Israel is fallen, they can still be saved. In the future, Israel will return as the nation above the nations in Christ’s earthly kingdom, but not today (Rom 11:26-28).

To bless Israel (or any nation) today, bless them with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Beseech them to put their faith in Christ as the means for all spiritual blessings under grace.

Unfortunately, for many who refuse to see the fellowship of the mystery, this is seen as the ultimate offense. The offense existed in Paul’s day, and it continues today.

“And I, brethren, if I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet suffer persecution? then is the offence of the cross ceased.” – Galatians 5:11

“But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.”- 1 Corinthians 1:23-24

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Published: August 26, 2017
Last Modified: August 26, 2017
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