From the "Acts" magazine of the
Church of God, Seventh day, Meridian, Idaho
THE ERRORS OF ITS TEACHING
Replacement theology is a misguided systematic approach to
the Bible that has not only led millions of Christians astray
over the years but it has, in addition, birthed evil of the most
REPLACEMENT theology played a role THE persecution of Jews
by the Church through the centuries, including the Holocaust.
Replacement theology is the opinion that Israel, having failed
God, has been replaced by the Church. The Church is now seen as
spiritual Israel and spiritual Jerusalem. This theology claims
that all the promises and blessings, in fact Israel's entire
inheritance, now belongs to the Church. However, Israel gets to
keep the curses. There is an older term known as
"supercessionism," with a slight variance from replacement
theology. It is the claim that a newer faith has rendered an
older faith obsolete - the old faith has been "superseded" in
Replacement theology was first "officially" established at
the Council of Nicea in 325 AD, but the idea was preached as
early as the late first century by some of the Church fathers.
During the last 1600 years, reformations and revivals have come
and gone, new denominations have sprung up, but this root of
replacement theology which continues to produce its anti-Semitic
fruit, has not been cut off. This is a great stumbling block to
the Jews as it prevents them from recognizing their own Messiah,
Jesus. As the prophet Isaiah says: "...Remove the obstacles out
of the way of my people..." (Isaiah 57:14).
WHAT IS REPLACEMENT THEOLOGY?
There are five main premises used to promote replacement
theology. Each will help one better understand what replacement
theology is and the errors that are perpetrated to the Christian
What are its premises?
1. Israel has been replaced by the Christian Church in the
purposes of God. The Church is the historic continuation of
Israel to the exclusion of the former.
2. The Jewish people are now no longer a "chosen people." In
fact, they are no different from any other group, such as the
English or the Spanish. They have no more right to the land of
Israel than the Palestinians or other people.
3. Apart from repentance, the new birth, and incorporation into
the Church, the Jewish people have no future, no hope, and no
calling in the plan of God.
4. Since Pentecost of Acts 2, the term "Israel," as found in the
Bible, now refers to the Church. The "age of the Gentiles" began
leaving the Jewish people stranded with no hope.
5. The promises, covenants and blessings ascribed to Israel in
the Bible have been taken away from the Jews and given to the
Church, which has superseded them. Yet, the Jews are still
subject to the curses found in the Bible, as a result of their
rejection of Christ.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE CHURCH
The ultimate result of the Church attempting to replace
Israel is many fold. One of the first things is that the Church
becomes arrogant and self-centered. It begins to boast against
the Jews and Israel. It devalues the role of Israel to nothing
more than God's disposable tool to get to the Church age. These
attitudes result in anti-Semitism in both word and deed.
Without a place for Israel and the Jewish people today, you
cannot explain the Bible prophecies, especially the very specific
ones ..... From Abraham's time and into the book of Revelation's
future prophetic events, one cannot understand God's complete
plan of salvation.
Many New Testament passages do not make sense when the
Jewish people are replaced with the Church.
You can lose the significance of the Hebrew Scriptures, the
Old Testament, for today. Many Christians boast of being a New
Testament Christian or a New Testament Church as in the Book of
Acts. However, the Bible of the early Church was not the New
Testament ... but rather was the Hebrew Scriptures we know today
as the Old Testament.
As a final result, the Church loses out on the opportunity
to participate in God's plan and prophecy for the Church, Israel
and the world today.
Gentile believers in Messiah are not supposed to be an
entity outside of (separation theology), instead of (replacement
theology) or better than (supercessionism) Israel, but are to
become part of the remnant of Israel.
God has in no way either rejected or replaced Israel or the
Jewish people. His covenant with them is unconditional and
non-transferable. God's covenants and promises were never based
on Israel's good behavior, but were based on God's faithfulness
toward His people. Although the Jewish people have suffered the
consequences of breaking God's Laws, just as all do, they have
not been replaced or rejected. They remain forever the only
witness to the one true God.
"But you, O Israel, my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, your
descendants of Abraham my friend, I took you from the ends of the
earth, from its farthest corners I called you. I said, you are my
servant, I have chosen you and have not rejected you." (Isaiah
41:8,9). "This is what the Lord says, he who appoints the sun to
shine by day, who decrees the moon and stars to shine by night,
who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar - the Lord Almighty
is his name: Only if these decrees vanish from my sight, declares
the Lord, will the descendants of Israel ever cease to be a
nation before me." (Jeremiah 31:35,36).
Another issue within the doctrine of replacement theology
that we must be aware of is that of the importance of the Law.
To believe in replacement theology is to sever oneself from
the root and to become part of the institution originated by
Rome. Early Church fathers, which never relinquished their pagan
heritage and beliefs, amalgamated their customs and practices
with the followers of Messiah. The result was a Roman
"Hellenistic" based organization called "the church." This new
entity would replace God's chosen as the bride. All scriptures
pertaining to Israel or Jerusalem in a positive light would be
transferred spiritually to the "church."
This is a false institution, founded on anti-law doctrines.
According to Jesus' own words, "Do not think that 1 came to
destroy the law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to
complete. For truly, I say to you, till the heaven and the earth
pass away, one jot or one tittle shall by no means pass from the
law till all be done." (Matthew 5:17-18).
The gospel and teachings of Jesus were not for the
destruction of the Law, but instead an embracing of the
Law on a greater level.
"This is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after
that time, declares the Lord. I will put my law in their minds
and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will
be my people." (Jeremiah 31:33). "This is the covenant I will
make with them after that time, says the Lord. I will put my laws
in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds." (Hebrews
10:16). Paul holds the same position. For remember to contradict
the Lord, Paul would be in error.
It is a shame what depensationalists, replacement
theologians and supercessionists have done to the writings of
this servant of God. Paul did not encourage a rejection or
abolishment of the Torah (Law). On the contrary, he affirmed the
Torah. "Do we then nullify the law through the belief? Let it not
be! On the contrary, we establish the law." (Romans 3:31).
Think about it. The "Church" wants the world to convert to
her morals and beliefs. Insisting that they are the road to God,
they tout the law, proclaiming to be the witness of the One True
God, who never changes. At the same time, her ministers stand in
the pulpit telling her own followers that God's laws have passed
away and are no longer applicable.
(Sadly that is indeed often the case with many Protestant
churches, but to be fair, not all Protestant churches teach this.
There are many who still teach obedience to the Ten Commandments
- I have been to some of them and heard messages and sermons
supporting the observance of the great Ten, but when they come to
the 4th one, they teach it was changed in NT times from the 7th
day to the 1st day - Keith Hunt).
Replacement theology is like leprosy. Eventually it
consumes all that was once alive. While it takes on different
forms, the core of this teaching is rejection. Rejection of God's
Word and the rejection of the law ultimately lead to the
rejection of the remnant of Israel.
(The Church of England or Anglican Church is now largely
rejecting what the Bible clearly teaches on Homosexuality and
Lesbianism, the Roman Catholics have not yet done so. It is a
mixture of truth and error in all Catholic and Protestant
churches, a replacement of truth once held for modern error and a
modern approach to viewing the Bible and understanding its
passages. And of course within this approach there are those with
PhD's from "theology" schools, who put it all into long technical
jargon that makes it all appear very "sophisticated and high-
brow" with terms and expressions that make it all so "scholastic"
in sound most simple Bible reading folk are intimidated and
scared off, or ones who are spiritual lazy just go along with
believing it must be so for the "educated" PhD has spoken. Such
people often do not known that PhD guys and gals contradict each
other and in their circle even blast and tear each other apart in
disagreeing among themselves on theological matters - Keith Hunt)
It establishes a "new entity" know as the "church" to
replace God's distinct people. Then it robs all of her rights,
privileges, and promises without any of her responsibilities.
Think not that this disease has been removed from the Church
simply because Hitler is gone and there is a superficial
rejection of replacement theology and anti-Semitic overtones. Do
not be fooled with the pretentious words of acceptance and love
from the pulpit. The Jew has been given no future at all within
the teaching of Christianity, unless he repents NOT of SIN - but
of all that makes him Jewish.
Then he must embrace the pagan "church" with its pagan
holidays and Hellenistic traditions. To hold onto anything Jewish
is anti-Christ and legalistic.
How is the "church" going to ever make the unbelieving Jew
jealous if she rejects the Torah, the promises and the covenants
God has faithfully entrusted with the remnant of Israel.
There is good news! All over the world, people are returning
to the Torah. Christians are digging, with a hunger they can
barely explain, into the Jewish roots of the faith. Seeking to
understand a first century walk with the Lord, they are taking
hold of the Sabbath and other blessings. (What is really just
doing as Christ taught us to do, "Man shall not live by bread
alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God" -
Matthew 4:4 - Keith Hunt)
There will still be many who will attempt to minimize this
mighty working of the Holy Spirit. The religious will explain it
away as lack of commitment to a local church or even FANATICISM.
But make no mistake about it; this is as the prophets
foretold. Only in IGNORANCE will this RESTORATION be seen as
anything other than PROFOUND. (This Website is devoted to the
"RESTORATION OF ALL THINGS" and LIVING BY EVERY WORD OF GOD -
END OF STUDY