The Bible contains thousands of promises. In the Old Testament we find promises concerning the coming Messiah, God’s salvation plan for the world, and promises for the Jewish nation; promises of blessing, inheritance and divine favor. All these promises, no matter who they are promised to, have one common denominator, one thing which regrettably has eluded millions of Christians. Look at these words:
“For the Son of God, Jesus Christ…was not Yes and No, but in Him was Yes. For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen.” (2 Corinthians 1:18-20)
An amazing statement: all the promises of God have their fulfillment only in and through Jesus Christ. If this refers to all God’s promises, then God’s promises to Israel are also included. Why then are so many Christians busy helping God fulfill His promises to Israel when those promises are only fulfilled through Jesus Christ?
I recently saw a Christian “Israel” magazine and one of the articles reported from a convention attended by several thousand evangelicals. The author noted joyously that in one particular evening session, the name of Jesus had only been mentioned once, and then only in passing at the close of a prayer. This exclusion of Jesus was noted as a sign of maturity and advancement. I don’t know about you, but such reports don’t give me a sense of progress, I rather feel like weeping. We are not helping the Jewish people or the state of Israel by pretending that there is blessing, comfort and peace outside of Jesus. How sad that many Christian organizations in Israel are enjoying favor, only because they have pledged not to evangelize.
Yes, we love and respect all people, but it is one thing to show respect and another thing to compromise our beliefs. For example, in my dealings with Muslims I always show great respect for them as sincere people on a quest for God, but I never hide the Gospel. On the contrary, my demonstration of respect is always accompanied by a loving, but direct, presentation of what God has done through Jesus Christ. To be ashamed of Jesus is very serious. If God’s promises could be fulfilled without Jesus then why did Jesus come in the first place? Paul calls such ideas, “frustrating the grace of God”.
Through Way of Peace, the Israel arm of our ministry, we demonstrate respect, love and care for the Jewish people by being ambassadors of Jesus Christ, not by hiding our faith in Jesus Christ.
One more thing while I am on the topic. I recently read a Christian publication expressing the hope that the Arab nations would turn against one another and wipe each other out. That is not my hope. I look for the Arab world to open its heart to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and be saved. The One I follow didn’t come to destroy people’s lives, but to save them.