I am Michael Pearl and you are at The Door. This is No Greater Joy Ministries. You can find us at Nogreaterjoy.org. We're located right now in Lobelville, Tennessee, little hick town in middle Tennessee. The Door is a place where you can sit and talk about Jesus or where we can broadcast the gospel message to you.
The Bible says, "Thy word is a lamp under my feet, and a light unto my path." Psalm119:105Those are not just words. That's been my life and it is truly a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.
We're going to open the word of God and see what Paul's got to say in Romans Chapter 10. Now, he starts off similar to what he did in nine, "Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.” Romans 10:1
Paul a Jew, he called himself a Jew of the Jews, Pharisees of the Pharisees. A very educated man, still loved his people and desired for them to come to know Christ, even though he called himself an apostle to the Gentiles, but he still desired for his people to be saved.
In Chapter 9, he says, "That I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart. For I could wish myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren and my kinsmen according to the flesh who are Israelites." Romans 9:1 Paul had a deep desire to see them come to Christ. These two chapters are going to be about his people, the Jews.
Why did Israel reject its Messiah? Now, of course, you know that the first several thousand converts were Jewish, but the nation as a whole rejected Messiah and as a whole, still reject him to this day, why?
He says again, verse two, Romans 10:2 "For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God." He's not putting them down. He's saying that they are very zealous. In fact said of himself that he was so zealous that he killed Christians in his zeal. He said, "They have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge,” that is, they were not knowledgeable of something they should have been knowledgeable of. “For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness." Now, that going about is a verb, going about, it's a verbal phrase. “Going about,” that means that it was an activity that they were fully and deeply engaged in.“To establish their own righteousness have not submitted themselves under the righteousness of God.”
Matthew 6:7 “But when ye pray,” he said, "Use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think they shall be heard for their much speaking." One of the things that the Jewish people had fallen into was repeating the same prayer over and over again. He said, "When you do that, you'd think that somehow you'll be heard for your much repeating." Of course, most of the religions, the world do have these things they repeat and prayer are chance over and over again and God finds fault with that.
In Matthew 23:23 He said, "Woe unto you, scribes in Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin.” I cook with that, “cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law." He said, they were very zealous so much so that not only did they tithe their money, but when they went out and picked a handful of mint or cummin to season with, they selected out 10% of the cummin, set it aside and took it down and gave it to the priest so he'd have something to season his meat with as well. They're very zealous. He said, but you've omitted the weightier matters of the law. Judgment, they didn't judge rightly. Mercy, they didn't often show mercy, and faith, they left off faith for works.
Romans 10:4, "For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth." Now, the end, he's not saying that terminates, but he's saying that:
Christ is the end of the law for righteousness. He's the goal. He's what we achieve. Many people have sought righteousness through the law and failed to get it. But when they come to Christ, they find that righteousness is a free gift.
Romans 10:5 “For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law.” In other words, way back there, when Moses wrote 1600 BC, he described not just stated, but described the nature of that righteousness, which is of the law:
“For Moses describeth the righteousness... that the man which doeth those things shall live by them.” Now, you will see as we go through these two chapters, when it's marked in reddish brown, rust color, as you see there, that's because it's a quote from the Old Testament. Every time you see that color right there, it's a quote Leviticus 18:5. I won't be referencing them, but you'll see the little red notation there. So much of what he's going to say in these two chapters are quotes from the Old Testament. Moses describeth. Moses said, "That the man which doeth those things shall live by them." Now, that's actually repeated five times. It's repeated twice in the New Testament. It's alluded to two other times in the New Testament. It's a very significant passage of scripture.
Romans 2:13, "For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified." That's the nature of the law that Moses described that if you do the law, you'll be justified by it.
Remember we learned in Chapter two and three of Romans that no one has done the law, and therefore, no one's been justified by it.
Romans 10:6 “But the righteousness which is of faith,” that is in contrast to the righteousness of the law, “the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise,” Now, he's going to quote, "Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven?" Now, he adds this, "That is, to bring Christ down from above." That's his interpretation of what was meant there in Deuteronomy 30:11 through 14, or quote, "Who shall descend into the deep?" He interprets it, “that is, to bring Christ up again from the dead. But what saith it? “ This is God's response, “The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is,” he's interpreting it, “the word of faith, which we preach.” See, he says, you don't need to go into heaven to bring Christ down to the earth. That's of course an impossible, ridiculous thing to think about doing, and you don't need to descend into the deep to bring him up from the dead, which would be humanly beyond comprehension. He said, God doesn't require something fantastic of you, something supernatural of you.
He said, rather the word of faith is in your mouth and it's in your heart. “The word of faith, which we preach that if thou shall confess with thy mouth, the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” In contrast to the works of the law, he said, simply believing in your heart and confessing with your mouth will result in your salvation, in a righteousness by faith.
Romans 10:10 “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made under salvation.” Now, he's not giving a formula for you walking down an aisle, and this is what you do to be saved.
He's simply telling us that righteousness is available to the person who believes with his heart and confesses Jesus Christ with his mouth.
Now, I have to ask where's water baptism in this, since he's giving us what you have to do to be saved? This would be the perfect place where it should be included if water baptism was essential to getting saved or receiving the gift of the holy ghost with the evidence of speaking in tongues were essential to being saved, or joining particular church was essential to being saved, but rather he reduces it to two things believing in your heart and confessing with your mouth. What? that Jesus Christ is raised from the dead.
He tells us, "For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him." Now, the emphasis here is whosoever, meaning Jew and Gentile as you'll see in the text. The scripture says, "Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed."
Now, in Isaiah 28:16, it reads “shall not make haste.” He interprets it for us as not being ashamed. In the Hebrew to not make haste, making haste is what you do if you're ashamed. You get out of there and so he interprets it for us into the Greek mind will not be ashamed. Now, again, we've already studied this word, not be ashamed. That's not just kind of hanging your head embarrassment, but it is the idea of failure. You won't risk coming to a state of failure. You have confidence that this will work, will not be ashamed for there's no difference.
You remember reading that earlier for there's no difference for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God. No difference between Jew and Greek, all alike or sinners and the provision is for all alike with no difference. No difference between the Jew and the Greek: “for the same Lord overall is rich under all that call upon him.”
Again, a quote from Psalm 86:5, the “all” there is inclusive Jew and Gentile. “For whosoever,” again, “Jew and Gentile, shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” (Joel 2:32) Again, we use this in evangelism, but he's not telling us to tell a sinner, if you call on the Lord, he'll save you. I've known a lot of sinners who've called on the Lord and haven't been saved. There's people who go to confession every week and call on the Lord and they don't get saved. His word call on the Lord is broader here than praying a single prayer. He's talking about, if you go back to the Old Testament, look, they called up on the name of the Lord. It's something much deeper than a single prayer or a single few words spoken. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
In other words, if a Gentile adopts Jehovah God as his God, believes on the Lord Jesus Christ, calls up on the Lord, he'll be saved just like a Jew will.
Paul returns to express his concern for his kinsmen and to make a missionary appeal. He's going to interrupt this progressive discussion about the state of the Jewish people with... He can't resist it. A desire for us to go and take the gospel to them.
Romans 10:14 He says, "How then shall they call on him? He's talking about these Jews. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in him of whom they've not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher?" You see what he's done, he's opened the door and said, are you going? If you don't go as a preacher, then they won't hear. And if they don't hear, they won't believe. Again, where's water baptism? It's not in there, is it? He conspicuously leaves that out.
Romans 10:15, “and how shall they preach except they be sent?” So that appeals to the church and the believers. Are you sending out those who would go? And sending them out, are they preaching the gospel? So that those who hear can believe. “How shall they preach, except they be sent? As it is written,” Again, a quote, "How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, that bring glad tidings of good things." (Isaiah 52:7) I've often taken my shoes off and shown my feet to the congregation and said, you see those feet are beautiful because I've shared the gospel even most recently with someone and they came to know the Lord Jesus Christ.
Our feet are beautiful to those who've never heard, even though our toes might be crooked and stained in our toenails, ingrown. Our feet are beautiful when we take the gospel to someone who's never heard it.
Romans 10:16 “But they have not all obeyed the gospel.” He's talking about the Jews. They've not all obeyed. “For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? “ You remember that? Isaiah 53:1. “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” Now, he is not giving you a supernatural event here saying that sinners cannot hear so the word of God does a magic trick and makes their ears open so they can hear. That's not what he said. He's simply saying what he's already said is they cannot hear it, if you don't take it. Hearing comes by the word of God, going to them.
And so take your Bible, open it and share it with a sinner. If you don't, they will not believe. If they do not believe, they'll not be saved. Hearing comes by the word of God. And by the way, make sure if you're speaking in English, you have a real Bible, an authorized version, a King James version. Otherwise, you don't have the words of God. You've got the amalgamated, emasculated words of man.
Romans 10:18 “But I say, have they not heard?” That is the Jewish people. “Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.”(Psalm19:4) Now, I believe he's talking about the apostles here, after Pentecost. We don't realize how extensive the first generation of Christians took the gospel. They took it to all the places where the Jews were and they were scattered throughout all the way from Afghanistan and what we call Afghanistan today, Saudi Arabia, clean up into the edge of what we would call Spain and France and Germany and maybe as far as England, at that time, up into Germany, especially.
“Their sound went into all the earth and their words unto the ends of the world.” That's a long ways off. They took the gospel. He said they heard it. The Jews heard this message that Jesus Christ was raised from the dead, was alive in offering the gift of righteousness.
It's prophesied that Gentiles will come into the faith.
Romans 10:19, “But I say, did not Israel know? First Moses said, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people.” (Deut. 32:21) That means they really don't have a structure. They're heathen that don't have an organized civilization. “...no people, and by foolish nation, I will anger you.” That's the way he would describe the nations.
The word Gentile actually is the word nations. When we say Gentiles, we're saying nations, anything other than Jewish, "I'll provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by foolish nation, I will anger you. But Esaias is very bold, and saith." That means he's kind of going out there on the limb. "I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me." (Isaiah 65:2) Now, why was that bold of Esaias? Because a Jew would not have found that a pleasing thing that the heathen the nations would come to God and be accepted without going through the rigorous demands of the law and the culture in which they lived. "I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me. But to Israel he saith," in contrast, "and to Israel he saith, all day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people." (Isaiah 65:2)
Gainsaying is when you say things for gain, like when you preach for gain or when you flatter for gain, or when you speak to win friends and influence people for gain. He said they have become gainsayers, their culture, their life, their social events are built around gainsaying. I've had Bible studies with doctors, lawyers, state senators. I mean, like a whole big room in a very expensive house, full of people who are worth at a minimum 50 times what I was worth at the time, and much, much more, and their meetings are rife with gainsaying. It's so pretentious, these rich people. Some of them can have good hearts, they come to know Christ, but their culture is one of gainsaying, and it's actually embarrassing for them.
And so, that's where the Jews had come, in their civilization they'd stopped speaking, frankly, they'd stopped speaking their hearts, and they learned to live in a culture where they gained something over their fellow man with their personal context. But to Israel he saith, all day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people. He is contrasting. You have to see where he is going, the nation of Israel and the prophecies that he would save the Gentiles.
Does this inclusion of the Gentiles mean that God is through with the Jews? Most Christian religions teach that God is through with the Jews. That's why there's so much scripture they don't understand. It's because they don't understand exactly what God is saying, what he said very clearly, without any difficulty of interpretation.
Romans 11:1, “I say then, Hath God cast away his people?” So he's going to answer that challenge. Has God gotten rid of the Jewish people, his Israel removed from his plan and program forever?
“God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.” He said, I am Jewish and God hath not cast me away. In terms of science, we can say, no, he is not cast him away because there's at least one here that knows him.
Romans 11:2 “God hath not cast away his people which he foreknew.” We studied that word foreknow than the last message. “Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Esaias? How he maketh intercession to God against Israel, saying,” so he's going to quote again, "Lord, they've killed thy prophets, digged down thine altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life." ( 1Kings 19:10) In other words, the prophet had reached a point in his life where he thought he's the only believer in Jehovah left in Israel. He saw nothing but corruption around him and he was fleeing for his life so he thought he was the last surviving believer.
Romans 11:4 “But what saith the answer of God unto him?” God said, “I have reserved to myself 7,000 men, who've not bowed the knee to the image of Baal Israel.” ( 1Kings 19:18) God knew exactly how many Israel had followed idolatry to the extent that out of several million people, only 7,000 of them were not immersed in idolatry. If you feel like the Christian Church is sick today, think about how far down is Israel God.
If you feel alone and you say, well, there's just no Christians left. God says, I've got a whole lot. You just don't know where they are. They're in hiding too. They're isolated too. "Not bowed the knee to Baal."
Romans 11:5 "Even so then at this present time,” just like at that time, “also there is a remnant according to the election of grace." He's talking about his God casted away his people and he says, that's what the prophet thought. And the answer is, no, he didn't. There was a remnant, 7,000. He said, so there's a remnant right now “according to the election of grace.” He's not talking about the individual election of each of the 7,000 or however many there be. He's talking about the election as we studied of that group of people to be his chosen people as God elected Israel.
Romans 11:6 “And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace.” We've talked about this several times in Romans already. You can't mix grace in works. If you do then the character of one or the other is abolished and you have pure grace or pure works. It's like taking pure water and pollution. You either got pollution or you got pure water. You say, well, I'm just going to mix a little pollution into my water, then you got pollution. Any pollution in the water, it ceases to be drinking water and it becomes pollution. Grace is pure. Any mixture of works and its ceases to be grace, it becomes works, one or the other.
Romans 11:7 “What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for.” So the nation of Israel failed to Atain to the righteousness. “But the election” that is a portion of Israel “hath obtained it. And the rest,” the major part of Israel, “were blinded.”
So do you see how, if you don't read this in the context of Israel, you end up not understanding this passage at all. If you try to make this, the election of Christians, some were elected and some weren't and some were blinded. You end up with all kinds of Augustinian, Lutheran, Zwingli interpretations, Calvin. “Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it.” That's that small portion the remnant like Paul was, and the rest were blinded.
Romans 11:8 “According as it is written,” now, he is going to show you that God prophesied that blinding of Israel, “God hath given them the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day.”(Isaiah 29:9-13) It didn't start with Paul. Their blinded eyes began way back in their captivity, before their captivity.
And they'd been in that state of blindness, when John the Baptist came, they were in that state of blindness. When Jesus came to preach, they were in that state of blindness.
Romans 11:9 “And David saith, let their table be made a snare.” Now, this would be in 1000 BC, “and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompence unto them.” “Let their table,” That's where you eat. “Let their table be made a snare and a trap.” Do you know how many people today the table is a snare and a trap to them, a stumblingblock and a recompence unto them? It's the table killing most people today. It's the table killing their children.
Romans 11:10 “Let their eyes be darkened, that they may not see, and bow down their back always.” (Psalm 69:22) Eyes darkened so they cannot see.
Romans 11:11 "I say then, have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid." In other words, is this stumbling of these Jewish people. The part that are not going to be saved, is it so that as a nation, they're going to fall cease to exist? God forbid.
What's the ramifications of this stumbling of the Jewish people? In other words, today, Jews are scattered all over the world in many nations. And by and large, they do not believe. Now, there are large numbers of Jews coming to believe. Mel Cohen, who works for us is a Jew of Jews and his whole family's Jewish and worship Orthodox Jewish and he still meets with Jews to worship on Saturday, even now, “but rather through their fall,” the fall of this Jewish people, “salvation is come under the Gentiles.” It's like it took the fall of the Jews for the Gentiles to be saved, “for to provoke them to jealousy.”
In other words, God's program. When the Jews eyes were darkened and they stumbled was to reach out and save a people who were no people, a nation that was foolish to save them and to display his grace to them so that the Jews would see God in them and be jealous of what they've got and want to come back. Now, if the fall of them be the riches of the world, that is the Jews fell and so the gospel gets out and goes to everyone, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fullness? He's about to introduce a new subject. He's saying if these Jews, by falling away from the faith, open the door for Gentiles to be saved, how much more would it open the door if the Jews came back into the fullness, once again? What kind of blessing would that be for the world?
Romans 11:13 “For I speak to you Gentiles,” and he's talking to the Gentiles now, “inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office.” He said, I am promoting my position. Romans 11:14-15 “If by any means I may provoke to emulation them which are my flesh, and might save some of them.” He said, I'm going out in winning Gentiles left and right in hopes that my fellow man, my Jewish brethren will see what's happening among the Gentiles and want to emulate it. For if the casting away of them, the Jewish people, be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead? He's leading us into another thought. He's going to give us that God is not true with Israel. He's going to receive them back once again. He said, when he does, it'll be life from the dead. Ezekiel talked about it in chapter 38 or 39, the valley and then where was that? 37, the valley of dry bones, bones coming together, and he said, that's the whole house of Israel. “The receiving them will be life from the dead.”
Romans 11:16-18 "For if the firstfruit be holy," that's Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and the early Jewish people, early Israeli people, actually, "the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches. And if some of the branches," not all, but some of them, "be broken off, and thou," Gentile, "being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them, among the Jewish branches, and with them partakest of the root," Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, "and fatness of the olive tree;" the blessings of Jehovah God that were up on Israel, now upon the church. "Boast," this is his commandment to the Gentiles, "boast not against the branches." Now, why would he say that? Because he knew that the Gentile church would boast against Israel, talk about Israel falling away and how that we have believed, and he said, don't do that. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.
He said, remember one thing, you anti-Jewish people, Jesus was a Jew. Paul was a Jew. Apostles were all Jewish. Despite somebody saying, one of them was a Gentile. They were all Jewish, and the early church, the first several thousand were Jewish. He said, this root, this thing, you're a part of is a Jewish thing so don't boast against it. Romans 11:18 “Boast not against the branches, but if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.”
Here's a warning to the church. Romans 11:19-21"Wilt Thou say then, the branches were broken off, that I might be grafted in." That's the brag. That's the boasting."Well, because of unbelief they were broken off," that's why not the remnant but the larger body of Israelis, that's why they were broken off is unbelief. They were broken off, that “thou standest by faith. Be not highminded,” Christian, Gentile, “but fear. For if God spared not the natural branches,” Israel, “take heed lest he also spare not thee.”
Can you see how difficult this would be, if you didn't know it was about Gentile and Jews? If you thought it was about a deacon, a deacon that because he'd come into unbelief would be broken off and cast aside so you got to go back to church Sunday and repent and get right with God so you can be grafted back in. I mean, I know some people think they've been grafted in 75 to a 100 times. See, you got to let the word of God speak its mind. You can't speak mind for it. You can't read into it something that's not there.
Romans 11:20 “Well, because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear. For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee. “
Romans 11:22 “Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them, which fell.” That's the Jewish people, “...severity; but toward thee,” Gentile, “goodness, if thou continue in his goodness,” let's continue in faith; otherwise thou also shall be cut off. Not talking about an individual Christian being cut off. He's talking about the church as a whole being cut off.
Romans 11:23-24 “And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief,” that's the Israeli people who didn't believe, “they shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again,” that is the branch that was broken off, can be grafted back into Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. “For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature and grafted contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more,” you remember earlier Paul writing, how much more, how much more, more over? “How much more shall these, which be the natural branches,” Israel is the natural branches, “be grafted into their own olive tree?” Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses.
Romans 11:25 “For I would not brethren that ye should be ignorant of this mystery.” There's several mysteries in the Bible, 12 of them, and mysteries are truths that are hidden but partly revealed, but just revealed to those who have the inside knowledge, which inside knowledge is available in the scripture.
But it's a mystery. It's something like a clue to a deep truth. And so this is one of the mysteries, Romans 11:25 “lest ye should be wise in your own conceits that,” this is the mystery, “blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in.”
That's the biggie here in these two chapters. “Blindness in part is happened to Israel,” in part not completely because some Jews do get saved. “Blindness in part has happened to Israel, until,” there's a termination point of that blindness, “until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in.”
What's the fullness of the Gentiles? That's when God has filled up his church with the last saved Gentile and he takes his church out, his bride complete the last stone in his building. You see, he said, we're stones builded together unto a holy temple. He says we're God's sanctuary, so the last stone will be the key stone in the dome.
And so, I don't know how far we are from the last stone, but one day, one of us is going to lead somebody to Christ. The angels are standing by waiting and saying, “well, that's the last one! is he going to believe or not?” and he believes, and that guy doesn't even get to pray a sinner's prayer. He believes on the Lord Jesus Christ blinks and wakes up in heaven. I mean, the building is complete.
“For I would not have you ignored this mystery, blindness in part has happened in Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in.”
Now, let's go to some charts where we can put all this together for you. We talked about the pre tribulation, pre-millennial view, which is the biblical view, the historical view, the view which anyone who reads the Bible with normal grammatical approach accepts.
Okay, you see on the left, the rapture and after 144,000 Jews are saved from 12,000, from each of the 12 tribes, seven years called Jacob's trouble.
The Great Tribulation
During that seven years, a great tribulation takes place at the last three and a half years, actually the latter part of the last three and a half years. Then after seven years, the second coming takes place and Israel is restored to the land in Israel and God's throne is set up. David is raised to rule over the nation of Israel and all Israel is saved.
Then you have a thousand year millennial reign with a great white throne judgment, and that lasts for 1000 years and then you have the great white throne judgment and the new heavens and the new earth.
Now, here's another chart. This one, we call the fullness of the Gentiles. Okay. Israel's blindness takes place right there at the crucifixion of Christ or shortly thereafter, the present state of blindness. And for 2000 years now, it's been the body of Christ.
That's this present age. At the rapture, the fullness of the Gentiles is complete. You see that in the middle, fullness of the Gentiles, the little red arrow pointing there with the yellow one. When the rapture takes place, that's because the Gentiles are full. At that point then the 144,000 Jews are saved and began to preach the gospel to the whole world and that's your three and a half years, and then they are martyred.
The Second oming of Christ
Then the second coming and the restoration of the nation of Israel in their land with Jesus on the throne and all Israel is saved at that point at the beginning of the millennium and there's a thousand year reign of Christ on the earth.
In the passages we read, Israel is God's tree. Now, scriptures use an olive tree for Israel, a fig tree for Israel, a vine for Israel, wheat for Israel, lots of different illustrations are used because they were farming people and so they understood it.
Now, there's a difference between the nature of the olive tree and the nature of the fig tree. Won't be able to go into all that tonight, but make a reference to it in a moment. At this point, he's saying that it's like a fig tree. I mean, like an olive tree, the reason, see olive trees have a lot of wild ones and you have to graft them in, but you didn't do any grafting for fig trees. He used an olive tree here because he's going to talk about grafting. The root of God's plant, God's tree is Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob who's called Israel. Now, Israel, this is Israel in their state of unbelief.
Israel over the years stopped believing God and started just relying up on the law itself and they fell away from the truth, from justice, mercy, and stopped honoring and worshiping God, and Israel in their unbelieving state is broken off.
The branches are broken off, but there was a remnant of Jews left.
Then there's a wild olive tree, which bore small olives, small tree, and so the farmer goes out and he takes a branch off the wild olive tree and he grafts it in and it gives a different nature to the olive tree. Now, it begins to grow in this branch that didn't bear well before because of the root now begins to bear big olives, beautiful olives.
The church becomes part of that original plant, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the church grows to become a great tree that fills the whole earth. Another time he used it like a grain of mustard seed.
Mark 4:30-32 "He said whereunto shall we liken the kingdom of God or with what comparison shall we compare it? It's like a grain of mustard seed, which when it is sown in the earth is less than all the seeds that be in the earth." The reason he chose a mustard seed here is because of the smallness of it. “But when it is sown, it groweth up and becometh greater than all herbs and shooteth out great branches; so that the fouls of the air come and lodge under the branches of it.” There comes a point when God is going to rapture the church out. We'll deal with that in a moment here.
The church over a period of time waxes cold and descends into unbelief with devils lodging under the shadow of it. Now, of the kingdom of heaven, it said they lodge in the tree, but the kingdom of God, they lodge under the tree. They can't be part of it.
Do you realize today that the church has hanging out around it and with it, a lot of devils that if you go to church, you're going with devils?
Now, that's not a reason not to go. If you're that spiritual and that great, go there and run some of them off.
And so, but why would the devils be there? Well, why were they in the garden when Jesus prayed? Why were they with Peter? Why do devils come where God is working and moving? Why did the devil come into the garden of Eden, where everything was beautiful and perfect and holy, because he wants to mess it up. And you go into church, it doesn't take you long to spot the devils. They come with people, by the way, they don't have their own mouth. They got to talk through yours. They've got to express themselves through your heart and through your body. Every church has its devils and sometimes it's even in the congregation, not to preacher, that's a joke, but sometimes true.
There's the old buzzard hanging out underneath the tree and they're getting bigger and gaining control over the church today and the church has become so corrupted that God is going to judge the church.
Now, I've made a statement that has shocked a lot of people. I'm going to say it again. The rapture is God's judgment on the church.
You see the kingdom of God has grown like a tree. He said that and filled the whole earth, but it's full of devils and those devils are in people. I think there's more devil members than they are holy members in the church.
You know the antichrist is not against Christ, he comes as a Christ, and he's followed by Christians. The antichrist is not a Muslim movement, it's a Christian movement. He'll gain a lot of believers who receive his mark because he'll perform miracles and signs and wonders, and he'll be on TV and he'll be charismatic. His hair will be curly and he will be well dressed and he have little rings on his fingers and he will be compassionate and powerful and wonderful and moving, and he will speak high and lofty things about God. Then he will claim and allow people to believe that he's the Christ and he will take the glory meant for God.
There will have been a few people missing by this time, the true believers, the remnant gone, but like Israel, great number left behind whose hearts were hardened. Most of the church will be left behind. It'll still function and judgment will fall upon the church.
Christians talk about going through the persecute or going through the tribulation. There'll be a lot of them going through it, but it won't be Born Again Christians. There'll be a lot of them that will need to get their hideaways and get their food and stuff, because the only way they will get to heaven, actually into the millennium is by not receiving the mark of the beast, by the way, dying a martyr's death.
If I thought I was going to go through the tribulation, I'd move to a big city as soon as the rapture took place and I'd start preaching, I'd get with one of the 144,000 to make sure my head got cut off so I could go to heaven, because that's the only way you'll get there. There won't be any getting born again then, and you actually won't get to heaven. You just get into the millennium and you still might go to hell, but you get into the millennium at least and have a chance.
The church waxes cold, descends into unbelief with devils lodge under the shadow of it. Here's what God does watch the tree.
He judges it, cuts off the branches. Remember what he said he was going to do?
If you don't abide in belief, he'll cut off the branches. Remember all the prophecies that the church wouldn't abide in belief. Jesus said, when I come, shall I find faith in the earth? He said the hearts of many won't wax cold and then describes all the sins that the church would descend into. In the book of revelation, he talks about the Lukewarm Church of Laodiceans that he said, I'll spew you out of my mouth and that's what you have in the tribulation is God's vomit left over from the church, judged.
Israel after the rapture, Israel's been lying fallow now for 2000 years, if a Jew gets saved, he's cast out of Judaism. He's banished. There are times in Europe, they won't even speak their name. They have a funeral and that's the end of them so watch the picture.
God said, watch out, I'm going to graft them back in again, the natural branches, and they're going to bear fruit, 144,000 at first, and then many more will be saved.
Here's the mystery revealed. Romans 9:26-27 "And so all Israel shall be saved as it is written, there shall come out of Sion, the deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob. For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins." (Isaiah 59:20-21) This is a prophecy that God will take away the sins of this cast off people.
Romans 9:28 "As concerning the gospel, they are enemies for your sakes." Paul said right now, at that time, when he was writing, the Jews were the enemies of Jesus Christ and the gospel, “but as touching the election” because they were elected. Remember that? God elected the people of Israel nation “touching the election, they” as a group “are beloved for the father's sake.” Israel is still Israel in unbelief is beloved for the father's sake. If you don't love Israel, you're not loving what God loves.
Romans 9:29 "For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance." (Num. 21:19) That verse has been used out of context so many times.
People use it to defend that tongues hasn't passed away. I don't think they passed away either, but that verses not one used to defend it. “For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.” “God gave the gift tongues so we still got them.” “God gave the gift of healing so we've still got the gifts of healing.”
Yes, the gifts are still present, but it's fake so much, that you can't hardly tell the real from the fake sometimes. “The gifts and calling of God,” he's talking about God electing the nation of Israel, calling them, and God is not through with them. It's without repentance.
Romans 9:30 “For as ye in times past have not believed God, yet have now obtained mercy through their unbelief. “ He's talking to the Gentiles, you obtained mercy through unbelief. "Even so have these also now not believed that through your mercy, they may also obtain mercy. For God hath concluded them all in unbelief that he might have mercy upon all."
See said, God has worked this plan through their unbelief. They'll reach a state like Abraham and Sarah did to where they're totally barren and there's no hope and then God will supernaturally come back, having provoked them to jealousy.
What's going to make them more jealous than having millions of Christians disappear and finding out that the ones they always thought were hypocrites were left behind? That the sincere, godly Christians were the ones taken out and the mass of Christianity is left behind. They're going to be able to make a judgment. They're going to say, these people believed on Jesus Christ, to Jew. They said he was raised in the dead and their book said he was coming back. And it said that he would call them his people, which were not his people, and he'd provoked us to jealous. Don't you know there's going to be a lot of scripture these 144,000 will be preaching.
Many Jews will be converted to Christ and antichrist will come against them when he sees he's losing. He tried peace for the first three and a half years and that failed. He is going to try force. He's going to come against the nation of Israel and drive them into the wilderness south of Judea. And there, God is going to feed them Manna from heaven like he did in days of old. At that point, there will be a great flood of water released through some dike or dam that'll be built at that time, or probably backing up the dead sea, raising its level 1500 feet, released into the valleys where the Jews are hiding and tried to drown them out of their caves.
But the Bible said, the earth will open up and swallow the water and they will be saved. Antichrist in his rage will suddenly find that God is serious about his people and he will send all kinds of plagues and diseases and distructions upon the people and they won't have time to chase Jews then. They'll be hiding in the rocks and the dens praying the rocks will fall on hide them from the face of the lamb and from him who sits on the throne and they will curse. The Bible said "God, in heaven and those that are there with him in heaven," they'll know the church has been raptured, out the true believers.
Paul concludes these two chapters. He has to worship for a moment. He has to celebrate. He says, Romans 9:33 "O the depth of the riches, both of the wisdom and the knowledge of God, how unsearchable are his judgements and his ways past finding out." He said, guys, this is great. This is just overwhelming.
Romans 9:34 “For who hath known the mind of the Lord, who hath been his counselor?” He is quoting Isaiah 40:13. “Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again?” In other words, we traded something. We gave him something, he gave us something back. He said, is that the case? Uh-huh (affirmative).
Romans 9:35 “For of him, and through him, and to him,”. “of him” that makes him the origin of it, “through him” makes him the channel of it, and “to him” makes him the object of it, “of him” all things are of God. All things are through him, all things are to him, and are all things “to whom be glory forever. Amen.”
Paul is celebrating. Now, I'm going to take you right back through those grafts real quick while you've seen the last scripture so you can get it in your mind again.
First, we're going to go through three passages of scripture. You're going to see this Jesus words in the gospels. You're going to see it and a way you haven't understood it before. All right.
Luke 13:6-9 “He spake also this parable; A certain man had a fig tree,” not a olive tree this time, “a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came and sought fruit thereon, and found none. Then said he unto the dresser of the vineyard, behold, these three years,” three years of Jesus ministry, “three years, I come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and find none.”
Three years, Jesus didn't find any fruit. “Cut it down; why cumbereth it the ground? And he answering said unto him, Lord, let it alone this year also,” it's about a year before Jesus was crucified, “till I shall dig about it, and dung it.” That's fertilize it. “And if it bear fruit well, and if not, then after that thou shalt cut it down.”
Well, that's a pretty good parable. Isn't it? Wait till you get the rest of it.
Mark 11:13-20 “And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves,” this is just a week before he is crucified. “He came, if haply he might find anything thereon. And when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves for the time of figs was not yet.”
I was out at my fig trees today, but I wasn't looking for fruit because the time of the figs is not yet. I was out there cutting it, portions of it down to the ground like you talked about here.
Now, why would Jesus go look at a fig tree at the wrong time?
“Then Jesus answered and said unto it, he's talking to the tree now, no man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever. And his disciples heard it. And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots.”
There's no interpretation or explanation of that parable. It looks like Jesus had a little fit there, looks like he wanted figs at the wrong time of the year and cursed the tree and the thing died. But right before his crucifixion, you got to know that there was a lesson in this and other scripture bear out what that lesson is, that Israel after three days would be cursed and cut down if it didn't bear fruit, but what did he say? It's not the time yet. God knew it. It wasn't the time yet.
Luke 3:9 “Now, also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees, every tree therefore, which bringeth not forth fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire,”
Luke 21:24 “And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be let away captive into all nations.” He's talking about the nation of Israel, “and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.” That prophecy of Jesus is that Jerusalem would be trodden down of Gentiles until the end of the church age.
Is Jerusalem trodden down of Gentiles? Today, if you go over there, you will walk through the old city and three-fourths of it is occupied and owned by Gentiles. You've got an Arabic quarter, Muslim quarter, that's Gentile, you've got a Catholic quarter, that's Gentile, and you've got an Orthodox church quarter, that's Gentile. And one quarter of it is Jewish, trodden down. And when you walk through the old city, you're bumping into Gentile tourist from every part of the world. At the whaling wall, it's full of Gentiles gawking and taking pictures. Everywhere you go, it's trodden down. He said, it will be trodden down, until the time of the Gentiles be fulfilled.
Luke 21:25-27 “And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars upon the earth distress of nations with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring; Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things, which are coming on the earth for the power of the heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the sign if the Son of man in the cloud with power and great glory.” This is second coming, not the rapture.
Luke 21:28 “And when these things begin to come to pass,” these signs, he just gave her a limited number of them. When they begin to come to pass, “then look up and lift your heads for your redemption draweth nigh. And he spake to them a parable.” Now, here's this parable again. "Behold the fig tree, and all the trees." Now, the fig tree's Israel, all the trees of the nations. “When they now shoot forth.” That's like when I went out today, it's still wintertime, late wintertime, buds were shooting forth on my fig tree. Just little buds getting ready.
Luke 21:29-32 “Behold the fig tree, and all the trees. When they shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand. Verily I say unto you, this generation” that sees these buds shoot forth, shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.
Now, you say, “why did Jesus say ‘cut the fig tree down?’” Different from an olive tree, if you cut a fig tree off at ground level so it disappears. You know what happens to it? It grows right back. You can't kill it that way. And in fact, he said dung around it, and if bears fruit fine, if not cut it down because an olive tree wouldn't do that, you cut it down, the root is gone.
But the nation of Israel is like the fig tree in that respect. God casts them off, He cut them to the ground, but there's life in that root and it's going to produce a new tree, a new plant.
"This generation shall not pass till all be fulfilled."
Here it is. Notice again the fullness of the Gentiles. Maybe understand it better now, having seen more scripture, Israel's blindness, the fullness of the Gentiles, the rapture, the restoration of Israel.
That's our pre-tribulation, premillennial, notice the 144,000, that's the fruit that they will bear right away, and that's Romans Chapter 10 and 11.