Has the Church Replaced Israel?: A Theological Evaluation Paperback – 1 Oct 2010
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About the Author
Michael J. Vlach is professor of Theology at The Master's Seminary in Sun Valley, California. He holds degrees from the University of Nebraska (B.S.), The Master's Seminary (M.Div.), and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (Ph.D.).
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And again, on Ephesians 2:11-22, "The fact that Gentiles have gone from being 'far off' to 'near,' or from excluded' to 'not excluded,' does not mean they have assumed the identity of Israel. Second, if Paul wanted to say that believing Gentiles were now part of Israel, he could have said that, but he did not. Paul will say that God has made both believing Jews and Gentiles 'one' (2:14) and 'one new man,' but he carefully avoids the title 'Israel.'.....(Quoting C. B. Hoch Jr.)'..They do not become Israel; they share with Israel.'"
Perhaps my favorite parts, were where he pointed out that, although there certainly are shadows and types in the Old Testament, the people of Israel were neither of those things, nor were the promises of material things, like land. Quoting Feinberg, " unconditional promises are not shadows, nor are the people to whom they are given." And also, where he pointed out that material things are not evil, "...we should not assume that physical things are inherently unspiritual. The physical universe God created was deemed 'very good' (Gen 1:31), not something that needed to be escaped or transcended. We should not assume that things like land, temples, and nations are unspiritual. Nor should we think that such things must necessarily be types or pictures of greater spiritual realities in some Platonic fashion."
I have so many quotations, I could go on and on...but then that would defeat the purpose of you buying the book. I'll end with one more quote, "Contrary to the supersessionist position, it is not God's intention for everyone who believes to become part of 'Israel.' Through Abraham, the nation Israel was created as a vehicle to bring blessings to 'all the families of the earth'(Gen 12:2-3), but it has never been God's intent to make everyone who believes 'Israel.' Israel, through the ultimate Israelite, Jesus Christ, is the means for worldwide blessing, but Israel is not an end in itself."