by Thomas Bass | Les Feldick
Now for our television viewers, we realize that some of you are seeing the program for the very first time, and so we like to inform people that this is just an informal Bible study, and that’s why you see coffee cups on the tables. My little wife Iris always the day before our tapings spends a good part of the day baking about 250 cookies for the class, and not one time in the past 5 years have I heard any one complain about her cookies. So I just wanted to give credit where credit is due.
I’m not a theologian, but rather I’m a full time rancher, and all of this the Lord has given me is just extra. The Lord has given me the best of both worlds. I love my ranching business, and I do have good cattle, but I also love to teach this Book. So the Lord has made it possible that we can teach almost every night of the week, and hearts are being blessed, and the television program has gone beyond what we could have ever dreamed. So we just give the Lord all the praise for it. Let’s continue from our last lesson. We just finished with the promise to Abraham continuing, not through Ishmael, but through the promised son Isaac. Let’s pick up this Covenant situation that Paul makes reference to in Romans Chapter 9, and verse 4 that to the Nation of Israel were given the Covenants. Remember never to the Church, but to the Nation of Israel. We looked at the one in Genesis 12, 13, 15, and 17, and let’s pick it up as this Covenant promise is repeated to Isaac the Son of Promise now in Genesis 26.
“And the LORD appeared unto him (Isaac), and said, `Go not down into Egypt; dwell in the land which I shall tell thee of:’” Now in verse 3 we find the demands of the Covenant promise. They were to remain in the land of promise, which of course was Canaan.
“Sojourn in this land, and I will be with thee, and will bless thee; for unto thee, and unto thy seed, I will give all these countries,…”
During our break time Jerry and I were talking and laughing about a statement that his wife Lorna had made while they were transcribing these little books for us. She comments once in a while, “I wish Les would just finish a verse before commenting on it.” Well I just can’t teach that way so maybe I’m unique that we stop in the middle of a verse and make a comment, and then hopefully it will come through and shed some light on the verse. But here we find in the middle of this verse that Abraham and Isaac are still dwelling in the middle of those Canaanite tribes that were there when Abraham came to the land. They haven’t gotten the whole land, it isn’t theirs yet, but the promise is that the day is coming when they won’t have to put up with the Canaanites because God’s going to give them the land. Verse 3 again.
“Sojourn in this land, and I will be with thee, and will bless thee; for unto thee, and unto thy seed, I will give all these countries, and I will perform the oath which I swear unto Abraham thy father (do you see how it all goes back to that Abrahamic Covenant? Now verse 4, and here’s that Covenant.); And I will make thy seed to multiply as the stars of heaven, and will give unto thy seed (his physical offspring)all these countries; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed.”
Well you say, how can God say `nations’ of the earth be blessed if He’s dealing with Israel. Well are you getting the picture? Everything has to come through this one little nation. And as I said in the last lesson, every word in this Book came out of the Nation of Israel. All the writers of Scripture, yes, I think including Luke, were Jews, and Paul makes that so plain in Romans Chapter 3:
“What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision? Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles (or The Word)of God.” This is what makes this Book totally unique from any other religious book on this planet. Looking at the end of verse 4 again we find this promise in the Abrahamic Covenant,
“…and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed: Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws.”
Well of course if you come all the way on over now to Chapter 46 we will deal with the next one in line. So we’ve had Abraham, Isaac, and now Jacob. Jacob of course has gone up to Haran in Syria, and married his wives, and he comes back to the land with eleven sons, and then Rachel his wife had Benjamin, and died. So in all Jacob had twelve sons. One of his sons, Joseph you remember, wound up down in Egypt by virtue of his ungodly brothers selling him into slavery. But again when Joseph met with the brothers he said, “Don’t blame yourselves, because God did it.” Further in Romans 9 we will see how that is so true in every aspect of God’s dealing. He’s Sovereign, He’s Holy, and Righteous, and we dare not question any thing He does, because He is Sovereign. So here the Sovereign God has set it up so that Joseph would end up in Egypt. God sent the 7 years of good years in order to get ready for the seven years of famine. That whole famine was set up in order to bring the whole tribe of Jacob down into Egypt. Remember what God told Abraham and Isaac, that they were were not to go down into Egypt, but to sojourn in the land. But look what God tells Jacob.
“And Israel (or Jacob the man)took his journey with all that he had, and came to Beersheba, (down in southern Palestine)and offered sacrifices unto the God of his father Isaac. And God spake unto Israel in the visions of the night, and said, `Jacob, Jacob.’ And Jacob said, `Here am I.’ (Now look what God says in verse 3)And he said, `I am God, the God of thy father: fear not to go down into Egypt; (now that was change wasn’t it? And the reason?)for I will there make of thee a great nation:’”
And that’s exactly what happened. After some 215 years of the children of Israel in Egypt Moses leads them out now a company of any where from 5 to 7 million people, and at that time they were the biggest nation in the world at that time. All right, so there that Abrahamic Covenant is repeated to Isaac and Jacob, and of course we have the “Covenant of the Law.” God gives Moses the Ten Commandants, and he comes down off the mountain, and gives the Law to Israel.
Turn to Deuteronomy Chapter 30 where we have another Covenant that God makes primarily now with Moses and the Nation of Israel, and we call this for sake of memory the,“Palestinian Covenant.” It’s a Covenant that originates with God that no one will ever be able to break. Now we know that the Arab world outnumbers the little Nation of Israel some where between 40-50 to 1. When I first taught Genesis, and I made some of these points, I had a dear Arab call me from one of our major cities who had watched the program, and he of course was furious that I was making the claim that the land of Palestine belongs to the Jews. I want the Arab folks to understand that God loves them just as much as He loves me or you. God’s offer of salvation goes just as much for the Arab as it does for the Jew, but the Covenant promises belong to the Nation of Israel. British Israelism is as far out in left field as you can get when they claim that you and I of America, and Great Britain, and some of the Scandinavian Nations are now the recipient of the promises because we’re the offspring of the “Ten Lost Tribes.” Don’t believe it. We’re offspring of lost tribes all right, my, our European ancestors were as lost as they could be, and they still are, and we still are, but the Covenant promises belong to the Nation of Israel. So God is speaking yet another Covenant, and no one can circumvent God’s Word.
“And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee.” Here is a prophecy from God. It hasn’t happened yet, but what did God know? That the Nation of Israel would be dispersed more than once. God knew that the Nation of Israel would become what we call, “The Wondering Jew.” Without a homeland, persecuted, driven, from one place to the other. But God says (and here is that Palestinian Covenant):
“And shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I commanded thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul; That then (after being dispersed for centuries)the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee.”
Now I’m sure that many a Jew had lost sight of that promise, but a lot of them didn’t, but oh we’ve seen it in our own generation that God’s Word is true. He’s bringing them back from every nation under heaven. At one time it was documented that there were Jews now living in Israel who had come from 133 different Sovereign nations in the world. They had been driven everywhere, but now they’re coming home All the time you will read of another nation where there is no longer a Jew among their citizenry. I think the Nation of Albania is one of the later ones, there is not a Jew left in that little nation across the sea from Italy. There are only a few hundred left in Syria. The main two nations that have the most are Russia, and America where we still have large numbers, but for the most part the Jews have been going back to the little land of Israel based on God’s Covenant promise to that nation. Now let’s look at II Samuel, Chapter 7, and here is what we call the, “Davidic Covenant.” Remember all these Covenants are surrounded by the Abrahamic Covenant. Every Covenant that God made with Israel is within the bounds of that Abrahamic Covenant.
Look at this one, He’s dealing with King David. And David had already committed the sin of adultery. Bathsheba had become his wife, he now has Solomon, and Nathan, and so now God is looking at this royal family that’s going to begin with David, come on down to his two sons Solomon, and Nathan and then the genealogy goes down through history until we come to our New Testament with Joseph and Mary. Once or twice during the Babylon captivity it looked like that genealogy was going to be broken when there was only one man left in that kingly line that could still have a son. But God prevailed, and the genealogy continued until Christ was born. But anyway here’s where that Davidic Covenant begins.
II Samuel 7:12,13
“And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, (God says)I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, (or innermost being)and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever.” It isn’t so much the 40 years of rule and reign that Solomon enjoyed, but rather that royal blood line that will carry all the way down through history until we get to the New Testament. Now here is the Covenant promise in the next verses.
II Samuel 7:14,15
“I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, (the Book of Hebrews makes it so plain that a good earthly father will do what with his children? He’ll discipline them, and God’s going to do the same thing with His Son the Nation of Israel. How will God do it? With other nations.)I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:” Now what’s the first word of verse 15? “But.” No matter how far Israel falls short, no matter how unbelieving Israel can be at various times, God says:
“But my mercy shall not depart away from him,…”
And all you have to do is look back in history, and God has chastened them time after time, after time, but they’re still under His thumb. And as I have mentioned over and over to people, this little nation that sits over there in the Middle East tonight is still that little nation that will yet one day be the apple of God’s eye. Oh they’re not tonight because they’re in unbelief, and there again I have to constantly remind my class people, don’t expect that government in Jerusalem to be Godly, don’t expect that government to be anymore righteous than any other government because they are secular. They are just ordinary human beings doing what they think is right for their particular circumstance, and they are just as much under the control of the god of this world (Satan) as Washington D.C. is. I think a lot of people think, “Well Israel, if they’re what the Bible says, then nothing evil should come out of that Knesset in Jerusalem.” Don’t expect that, but there is this exception, they are still God’s Covenant people. And right now they have been set aside, they’re spiritually blinded for the most part as a nation, but remember God’s not through with them. He is yet going to pick up where He left off, and this is exactly what He’s talking about.
II Samuel 7:15
“But my mercy shall not depart away from him,…”
All right I think that’s enough with the Covenant promises, until we get to Jeremiah, and I guess we had better look at that one in Chapter 31. And this is pretty much the final Covenant that God gives to the Nation of Israel, and of course it is yet future. It is not appropriate to put Israel under this Covenant promise tonight, but they will one day enjoy it.
“Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, `that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:’”
God’s not going to just dress up the old Covenant, He’s going to make a whole new Covenant with this nation. Far be it for me to argue with the theologians, but I think most of you are aware that a lot of theologians claim that you and I as believers in the Age of Grace are under the “New Covenant.” Well if I read my Bible in plain English that just can’t fly, because to whom is God going to make this new Covenant? Israel, and no one but, so how can we be in a Covenant that makes with Israel. Well we can’t be, but like I said in the last lesson, we’re enjoying the benefits of everything that God did to fulfill this Covenant with Israel. In other words, the work of the Cross, the power of His Resurrection, the coming of the Holy Spirit, and all of these blessings we enjoy in this Age of Grace, but it’s not a Covenant relationship. We are members of the Body of Christ, He is the Head, we’re in the Body, but we’re not in a Covenant relationship. Now reading on.
“Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD:”
Well which Covenant did they break? Law. And we really didn’t stop and look at the Covenant of Law to much, but the giving of the Law was a Covenant, and so that Covenant Israel just constantly broke, even as we do they did. So that’s what God is referring to in verse 32. Now verse 33.
“But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD (Now here it comes, here is the new Covenant.), I will put my law in their inward parts, and wrote it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.”
Now that isn’t going to be a choice of Israel. That remnant of Jews aren’t going to suddenly say, “Well we’ve decided to follow God.” No, No. When Christ returns and sets up His Kingdom that remnant of Jews that He has kept through that Tribulation period will see Him coming in the clouds of glory, and they’re going to believe in a moment. In fact we might as well look at it in Isaiah Chapter 66. Yes the nation is going to be born in a moment , that remnant that Paul again is going to be dealing with in Romans Chapters 9, 10, and 11. So we’ll be getting to it. But oh that Nation of Israel is going to born in a day spiritually, and then this new Covenant will become a reality. And God is going to put His Word, His Commandments in their hearts. They’re not going to have to teach their kids the law, they’re not going to have to have a priesthood to teach them the commandments, they’re going to know them. Now in Isaiah Chapter 66:
Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once?…”
Absolutely at the coming of Christ that remnant of Israel will suddenly see Him for what He is, and to the last Jew that’s in that remnant they will say, “My Father, My God.” And God will answer, “My People.” Now it’s been a long time since He’s said that about the Nation of Israel, but He will when that day arrives. Now let’s go back to Romans Chapter 9, and verse 4.
“Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law,…
Israel came out of Egypt under Moses who leads them down to Mount Sinai, and as they’re camped around the mountain we find God calls Moses up into the mountain. The mountain of course was on fire, and smoke covered it, and that’s what he referred to when he said what other nation has ever experienced anything like that before. But while Moses was up there for 40 days, and nights, God wrote on the table of stones the Ten Commandments. And that is what we basically refer to as the moral law. But in order to bring in the religious system of the law, God also had to add to those Ten Commandments all the rituals. In other words all the regulations and rules, which we will call the civil Law.
And then all the stipulations of the priesthood, which we call the ecclesiastical part of the law, and then of course God gives Moses the instructions for building the tabernacle, and they accomplish all that while they’re yet down in the wilderness of Sinai. And as the tabernacle is finished, and the Shekinah glory comes down upon it, then every time the glory lifted and moved, they took down the tabernacle and followed it. And so that was the giving of the Law, and they took it on into the Promised Land after the 40 years of wondering in the wilderness. And for years it just set up there as a temporary little tent north of Jerusalem until finally God gave David, and through his son Solomon the permission to build a permanent dwelling place for their God, and that of course was Solomon’s Temple. Now that was all part and parcel then of the giving of the Law to this Nation of Israel. It’s all part of their heritage, the Law was never given to the Gentiles. But even as we have seen in Romans Chapter 3 that the Law was given to Israel, who else did it cover? Well the whole human race. But the Law as such was only given to Israel, and let’s never lose sight of that. In our next lesson we will be looking at the service that was connected with the Law, the rituals, and here again the Gentiles have no part in that either. That was strictly for the Nation of Israel as a total part of the giving of the Law.