Not All Israel

By Justin Johnson

“Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:” – Romans 9:6

Arguably, the most important verse in understanding how God’s promises to Israel will be fulfilled is Romans 9:6.

What it explains is not new, but it is significant in that the apostle Paul said it. Miss this verse, and you will make God’s word have no effect on Israel.

Two Israels

In Romans 9-11 Paul talks about who receives Israel’s promises. Romans 9:6 says that not every Israelite will receive what God promised to Israel.

In other words, there are two Israels. One contained within the other.

One is the Israel that is seen throughout history that can trace their lineage back to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

The second consists only of that part of historical Israel who by their faithful obedience to God serve him with circumcised hearts.

Only those Jews who are circumcised in heart according to the law will receive the promises, not all Israel (Deu 10:16).

It is faithful Israel that will receive the promises, not all Israel.

The Remnant of Israel

Historical Israel has always been much larger than faithful Israel.

In Elijah’s day there were seven thousand men who were faithful, and the rest of Israel served Baal (1 Kings 19:18).

In Nehemiah’s day most of Israel was destroyed or held captive by their enemies. Only a remnant returned (Neh 1:3).

“For though thy people Israel be as the sand of the sea, yet a remnant of them shall return: the consumption decreed shall overflow with righteousness.” – Isa 10:22

God calls only a remnant of Israel to live as the promised nation in the kingdom (Joel 2:32). The rest are consumed.

When Jesus came to Israel not all Israel received him. Only a small group which he called “little” received him (John 1:11-12).

“Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” – Luke 12:32

Isaiah called this remnant the “righteous nation” that would receive the kingdom (Isa 26:2).

When Peter preached at Pentecost to the multitude of Israel thousands believed, but not all Israel.

The Promises to Israel

God did not promise Abraham and Jacob that “all thy seed” would be a blessing, but that “in thy seed” would the nations be blessed.

Not all Israel has been nor will be a blessing to the nations.

God’s word has always had the effect of calling out the remnant of faithful Israel. God is not through with Israel.

“Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:” – Romans 9:6

He is faithful to keep his promises to them, but not all of them get the promises.

He chose to give the kingdom to the faithful few of Israel, not all Israel.

The Kingdom to Israel

When that kingdom comes, it will not be to unbelieving faithless Israel, of the variety that mainly exists today in the land.

They will be removed and replaced with the smaller nation of Israel, at that time, faithful to the Messiah and possessing the Holy Ghost.

At that time there will be only one Israel, faithful Israel. The faithless will be consumed or turned away from the kingdom. The only Israel that remains and reigns in the kingdom will be saved throughout.

“And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.” – Roman 11:26-27

Until then, they, which are of Israel, are not all Israel (Rom 9:6).

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Published: June 22, 2013
Last Modified: March 7, 2018
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