John MacArthur, Jr.
But for those who get it, for those who understand it, for those who embrace God’s sovereignty that He is the only one who can determine who will be saved and blessed and He is the only one who can save and bless, then saying that He cancelled promises to Israel because they didn’’t believe is completely inconsistent. How could they believe unless He caused them to believe? How could He hold them responsible for not believing? How could He hold any of us in one sense, responsible for not believing...we are responsible for our sin, but in the end we believe because He moves on us.
Now why am I making a case for this? Because when you understand God’s purpose for Israel, you now have the foundation for all eschatology...all eschatology. You get your eschatology right when you get Israel right. You get Israel right when you get the Old Testament covenants and promises with Israel right. You get the Old Testament covenants and promises right when you get the interpretation of Scripture right. You get the interpretation of Scripture right when you’’re faithful to valid rules of interpretation. So you interpret it right and that will allow you to understand the meaning of the Covenants and the future of Israel, and God’s integrity is at stake. Over 200 times in the Bible God is called the God of Israel. Over two hundred times the God of Israel. There are over two thousand references to Israel in Scripture. Not one of them means anything but Israel. So if you say the promises of the Old Testament that refer to Israel really meant the church, you have no precedent for such an interpretation. Not one reference anywhere in Scripture and there are over two thousand, referring to Israel means anything other than Israel. There are 73 references in the New Testament, each of them refers to Israel.
So here’s how to get the foundation for a good sound eschatology. Get election right. Get Israel right. You got it. Cause what that means is God does know the future, God has set the future and the future involves not only the glory of His church but the fulfillment of His elect people Israel with regard to everything that He promised that nation. And there are a lot of people who get the first one right, they get election right, and they don’t get Israel right and they are lost when it comes to eschatology. And I’m confident that God didn’t reveal prophetic truth in so much detail to hide anything, to obscure the truth, but to reveal it for our blessing, our motivation, and His glory. So my words to you are really very simple foundational words. I say this, if you want to understand what the Bible says about the future, get these two things right...the sovereignty of God in election, and the promises of that sovereign electing God to those people to whom He has elected...His redeemed church and Israel. Return the sovereignty of God in election to its rightful place, return the nation Israel to its rightful place, and your eschatology will unfold in beautiful clarity.