Fred Hutchison
The Jews in prophesy
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By Fred Hutchison
December 20, 2008

Letter to the editor of First Things: regarding Messianic Gentiles and Messianic Jews

Mark Kinzer is justified in his complaint that the Jews have been eschatologically short changed. The prevailing eschatological idea that the church is the new Israel has diminished and sidelined Israel. This speculative but extremely old idea is why the church, for much of its history did not know what to do with the Jews. It is one reason why the church often failed to honor the Jews and often stood idly by while antisemitism ran rampant in the streets.

Kinzer thinks the answer is to emphasize the continuity of Old and New Testament. This approach introduces a new error. Far from being a continuity, the Mosaic Covenant is abolished in the New Testament. If you think not, read Galatians and Hebrews. However, the Abrahamic covenant is still in effect, and offers authentic continuity.

Levering is correct in his reproof of Kinzer's continuity model, but thinks that the "fulfillment" model, i.e., Christ fulfills the covenants, solves the problem. While there is some truth in the fulfillment model, it perpetuates the historical supercessionist ecclesiology, which Kinzer rightly complains of. Neither men has found a solution to this age old problem of the Jews, because both of them are working within a false paradigm, namely Catholic amillenial eschatology.

Lutheran amillienialists have exactly the same two camps, the continuity camp and the fulfillment camp. Both camps must use metaphor and speculation in a strained attempt to square their ideas with scripture with no small amount of sweeping inconvenient scriptural passages under the rug.

The conventional premillennial model of the Evangelicals offers half a loaf to the Jews. This model offers a partial upgrade of Israel, at the cost of introducing an unbiblical "secret rapture of the church." The model ultimately reduces Israel and the Jews to an honored but second class position. If all Israel will be saved during the Great Tribulation, most of the Jews will be saved too late to participate in the rapture and the Marriage Supper of the Lamb and will not be part of the bride of Christ. The gentile church will still be on top and the Messianic Jews will get second-class honors and glories. As a gentile believer, I am tired of seeing the game rigged against the Jews.

At the eschaton, or the divinely appointed climax of the age, Israel will be central:

1) All the prophesies which must be fulfilled before The Great Tribulation can begin pertain to Israel. 2) After the sealing of the 144,000 Israelites 12,000 from each of the twelve tribes of Israel most of the prophetic and evangelical work on earth will be done by or led by Messianic Israelites. 3) When Christ returns with his resurrected church he will sit on David's throne in Jerusalem, and will destroy the concurrent gathering of the enemies of Israel just as King David destroyed the enemies of Israel. 4) The Marriage Supper of the Lamb will be in Jerusalem and all redeemed Jews and Israelites will be part of the bride. 5) Christ will reconstitute and expand the nation of Israel to the borders which God described to Abraham. 6) Christ will rule all nations for a thousand years as he sits on David's throne in Jerusalem. The only worldwide government in all history will be an Israelite monarchy-empire. 7) The Twelve Apostles and the Twelve patriarchs of Israel will have equal honors in the New Jerusalem. For all eternity, the redeemed Jew will take second place to none.


A message from Stephen Stone, President, RenewAmerica

I first became acquainted with Fred Hutchison in December 2003, when he contacted me about an article he was interested in writing for RenewAmerica about Alan Keyes. From that auspicious moment until God took him a little more than six years later, we published over 200 of Fred's incomparable essays — usually on some vital aspect of the modern "culture war," written with wit and disarming logic from Fred's brilliant perspective of history, philosophy, science, and scripture.

It was obvious to me from the beginning that Fred was in a class by himself among American conservative writers, and I was honored to feature his insights at RA.

I greatly miss Fred, who died of a brain tumor on August 10, 2010. What a gentle — yet profoundly powerful — voice of reason and godly truth! I'm delighted to see his remarkable essays on the history of conservatism brought together in a masterfully-edited volume by Julie Klusty. Restoring History is a wonderful tribute to a truly great man.

The book is available at Amazon.com.

© Fred Hutchison

 

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Fred Hutchison

Frederick J. Hutchison attended Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, as an undergraduate, and Cleveland State University to get his Master's degree in business... (more)

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