The Hidden Irony of Christian Replacement Theology
For centuries the Christian Church has tried to impose its own interpretation on Scripture. The Bible, however, is a book about Israel, and Israel alone is an absolute fact, yet sadly it is not generally recognized as such in Christian circles! The Church for the past 1700 years has completely ignored the special Covenant relationship that exists between the Creator of the Universe and His “chosen” people Israel. The Nation that was first chosen by God, and then through Ten awesome plagues, delivered from the slavery and bondage of Egypt, was the nation of Israel, as a cursory look at the Book of Exodus will confirm. No Covenant was ever made with any other nation! You really do not have to be a theologian to see this – just read the book! This nation Israel was composed of Twelve Tribes, which had descended respectively from the twelve sons of the Patriarch Jacob, whose name was changed to Israel. Those same twelve tribes of Israel stood at Mount Sinai in the Arabian Desert, where they were given the “Instructions,” the Torah, commonly known as the Ten Commandments, and it was there and then that the Marriage Covenant between God and His people Israel was sealed. As, at that very same time our Hebrew ancestors replied with one accord;
“All the words which the LORD has said we will do!”
Thus our Hebrew ancestors said YES to the Covenant they were being offered.
It is only as we follow the history of this Hebrew nation in the Bible, which might well be termed the History Book of Israel, will we discover that this nation of the Twelve Tribes of Israel became a divided nation, with Ten Tribes seceding from the Royal House of David. This sad separation is recorded in 1 Kings 12. The United Kingdom of Israel split into two kingdoms, with the Ten Tribes establishing their own independent kingdom to the north of Jerusalem centered on their capital city Samaria, and it was they who retained the name Israel for their newly established kingdom. At the same time the Jews and many from the tribe of Benjamin remained in the south of the country centered on Jerusalem. Their nation now adopted the name JUDAH, after the royal tribe of Judah, and since that time they became known as the Kingdom of Judah. All of this is clearly recorded in the Biblical books of Kings and Chronicles, which make for fascinating reading.
Bible history then records the history of the separate royal dynasties ruling over these two kingdoms. It faithfully records the rivalry, animosity and indeed wars between these two nations. Whereas the Kingdom of Judah remains largely faithful to God, the Temple, the Levitical Priesthood and the Royal House of David, the Northern Kingdom of Israel charts an entirely different course, as it walks in open rebellion away from the Covenant. The Ten Tribes go headlong into paganism by embracing the occult and witchcraft, worshipping all kinds of false gods, and they even end up sacrificing their own children. The God of Israel, the Creator of the Universe and the only True God, then sends His prophets to warn the nation and its rulers, all to no avail. Then the judgement those prophets prophesied comes true, as the terrifying Assyrian Empire invades the nation taking three tribes on the eastern bank of the River Jordan into captivity by transporting them nearly a thousand miles away to the shores of the Caspian and Black Seas. Thus at a stroke the nations was deprived of 25% of its population, and probably around 35% of its livestock. It was the greatest calamity ever to have befallen the nation. Yet the people did not mend their ways, in fact their attitude is described perfectly in Isaiah 9:9-10:
“All the people will know-Ephraim and the inhabitant of Samaria
– Who say in pride and arrogance of heart:
‘The bricks have fallen down, but we will rebuild with hewn stones;
The sycamores are cut down, but we will replace them with cedars.’ ”
The nations clearly had learned nothing from the disaster and despite further warnings being given the rulers of the nation continued unabated in their open rebellion against the Covenant their fathers made at Sinai. Even so, many millions of Israelites saw the writing on the wall and departed from their country to establish colonial settlements all around the Mediterranean Sea and beyond. The Assyrians were soon back with a further devastating invasion with great slaughter followed by another mass deportation. Then there came the third and final invasion and after a three year siege of their capital city of Samaria, all remaining Israelites who were not killed were taken away into captivity to Assyria. This historic event occurred in 721 B.C. You will find this recorded in 2 Kings Chapter 17 & in verse 18, where we find the following absolute statement:
“Therefore the LORD was very angry with Israel, and removed them from His sight; THERE WAS NONE LEFT BUT THE TRIBE OF JUDAH ALONE!”
(2 Kings 17-18)
In verse 21-23 we find the whole situation summarized in a nutshell:
“For He tore Israel from the house of David, and they made Jeroboam the son of Nebat king. Then Jeroboam drove Israel from following the LORD, and made them commit a great sin. For the children of Israel walked in all the sins of Jeroboam which he did; they did not depart from them until the LORD removed Israel out of His sight, as He had said by all His servants the prophets. So Israel was carried away from their own land to Assyria, as it is to this day.”
(2 Kings 21-23)
Historians have estimated the population of the ancient Kingdom of Israel to be between 8 to 10 million inhabitants, and the basis used for their estimates is the vast armies those Ten Tribes were able to bring to the battlefield. Subsequent history does not record more than a minuscule trickle ever returning to join the remaining Kingdom of Judah. Ever since that time this has become one of the greatest mysteries of history, and those missing Israelites have since become known as THE LOST TRIBES OF ISRAEL. It was prophesied by Isaiah that they would lose their identity:
“The ox knows its owner and the donkey its master’s crib; but Israel does not know, My people do not consider.”
Nearly one third of the Bible is composed of prophecy and all of this prophecy revolves around Israel and its future restoration in the Messianic Era. They unanimously speak of a restored kingdom, where the House of Judah and the House of Israel are once again reunited into ONE KINGDOM.
The Prophet Jeremiah speaks of this future event:
“Behold the days are coming says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.”
The Apostle Paul speaks of that very same covenant in the Book of Hebrews 8:8-12. Sadly, Christianity has largely ignored the prophecies about the Lost House of Israel is because of the replacement theology paradigm that has blinded their minds to the truth. The fact remains that even if the Church by some extraordinary miracle accepts the truth about the existence of the Ten Lost Tribes, it would contradict the established theology. While Christians have a concept of ‘personal redemption,’ ‘national redemption,’ that is to say the national redemption of Israel, the prophets of the Bible speak off, is something that is entirely foreign to them. Nevertheless, nearly ninety percent of the prophetic books of the Bible are about the ‘national redemption’ of the House/Nation of Israel. The truth is that if the established Christian Church today were to recognize that all these prophecies refer to a ‘literal’ and ‘physical’ Israel after all, her entire theological card house would collapse. With this crucial vested interest at stake, it should not surprise us that their leaders are wholly opposed to any idea of a physical, literal Israel playing any role in end-time eschatology.
Nevertheless, there is a great deal of irony attached to this ‘Christian’ doctrine of ‘Replacement Theology,’ as by usurping the position of the Covenant people of Israel, they are unwittingly associating themselves with the ancient Hebrews. Whereas the original impetus for their replacement teaching was to steal the spiritual clothes of the Jews, they have in practice paid them a backhanded compliment! The early proponents of this Replacement Theology clearly thought that Israel’s spiritual heritage was well worth stealing!
The point here is that people often tend to believe instinctively in something that they feel to be true, no matter how irrational it might seem. Their heart tells them that Israel’s covenant heritage belongs to them, yet they cannot justify their entitlement with their head. It is something that they intuitively feel in their subconscious mind. Intuition has frequently served as a powerful tool for discovery and invention, and many scientific and other research breakthroughs have their origin in just such intuitive feelings.
Why do Christians want to steal the clothes of the Jews? The question is why do these Christians want to equate themselves with Israel?
Why do Christians want to make that connection? Could it possibly be that, even in this very widespread theory that the Christian Church has replaced Israel in God’s scheme of things, that in this we are in fact seeing a further subliminal indicator of Israelite origins in many of its believers?
Maybe it is a question of their own hidden Hebrew roots somehow telling them they are entitled to Israel’s heritage.
As we ponder this question, we may be uncovering a truth that has lain dormant inside the Christian breast for nearly two millennia. This means that in embracing this pernicious ‘replacement theology,’ these Christians may actually unwittingly be revealing their own Israelite origins as the Lost Tribes of Israel. Is this not highly ironic? They subconsciously desire to equate themselves as Israel because; if the truth be known, they are Israel! The problem is that they don’t know it and if you told them they would deny it! Yet, buried deep inside their DNA they somehow sense the Israel calling belongs to them.
This means that even this adherence by much of the Church to ‘replacement theology’ may well be a further ‘sign’ confirming the Hebrew roots of Christianity at large.