The 2001 Commentaries

Are the Jews Still God’s ‘Chosen People’?

info All commentaries are written by volunteers, readers, or supporters of our Bible translation project. These are not official views of our project; we are not a religious denomination and we do not establish doctrine. These commentaries reflect a variety of views and some disagree with each other.

The idea that the Jews are still God’s chosen people and that they will eventually rule over the earth from the City of JeruSalem is becoming popular among many fundamentalist religions today.
However, such a teaching isn’t in line with what we read in the Bible.

For instance;
Notice what Jesus said to the people of JeruSalem just before he was put to death there, as it is recorded at Matthew 23:37, 38:

‘O JeruSalem, JeruSalem… you killer of Prophets and stoner of those that were sent to you! How often I wanted to gather your children the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you didn’t want it.
Look! Your house has been taken from you!

So their ‘house’ (their position of special favor with God) was about to be taken away from them due to their repeated rejection of God’s ways… Because they wouldn’t listen to (and they even murdered) His Prophets, and because they were getting ready to murder His Son.

Notice how Jesus pictured this rejection of the Jews as God’s chosen people in his parable of the man that hired laborers to cultivate his vineyard as he was traveling abroad (as found at Matthew 21:33-41).
For in this story;
When he sent his servants to collect some of the fruit, they beat and even killed some of them.
And as was about to happen to him, the story ends with the cultivators killing the man’s beloved son.

So, how did Jesus’ parable end?
Verse 41 tells us this:

Then he will hire others to cultivate the vineyard that will give him the fruit when it’s due.’
And then he went on to tell those elders and chief priests:
‘This is why I tell you;
The Kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation that produces its fruit.’

Also notice that in Matthew 22:1-10, we read a similar parable that Jesus gave, which told about a king that invited guests to a grand banquet.
However, none of those whom he invited (the Jews) showed up.
In fact;
First they abused his messengers, and then they killed them.
So, the king sent an army to destroy those whom he had invited, and then he burned down their city (JeruSalem), after which, he sent his attendants out to invite others to the feast.

So, who are these ‘others?’
Well, out of respect for His Sacred Agreement with AbraHam, God continued to offer the opportunity to be ‘kings and Priests’ in His Kingdom exclusively to the Jews and to the Samaritans (who lived nearby) for the 3-1/2 years following Jesus’ death. But after that, the opportunity to become ‘Spiritual Jews’ was offered to the first of many future ‘gentile’ converts, Cornelius and his family. And from that point on, the Bible speaks of growing numbers of gentile converts, as Paul and others were appointed as Apostles (or ‘Sent Ones’) to the nations or gentiles.

Also notice Jesus’ words as found at Matthew 8:12, where he foretold:
‘The Sons of the Kingdom will be thrown into the darkness outside, where they will cry and grind their teeth.’

So, since the Jews were in fact ‘the sons of the kingdom’ or the sons of the AbraHamic promise, the indication here is that they as a nation (but not as individuals) were being rejected.

Then in the letters of Paul, we read that these gentile converts were thereafter included in the promise that God made to AbraHam, so they too could become his ‘sons,’ and they too would become part of a ‘New JeruSalem.’
Notice what Paul wrote about this at Romans 2:28:

So, a Jew isn’t what you are on the outside, nor is circumcision something that’s outside on the flesh.’

In other words;
The faithful gentiles had become ‘spiritual Jews,’ or the symbolic ‘twelve tribes of IsraEl.’

Thereafter, it was to this ‘new nation’ that all the promises and New Sacred Agreements now applied…
They no longer applied to the earthly city of JeruSalem, for JeruSalem had been rejected.
Well, notice what the people in that city replied to Pilate’s question when they were calling for the murder of God’s Son (at Matthew 27: 25):
‘At that, all the people said,
May we and our children be responsible for his blood.’

We also read that they said (at John 19:15):
‘We have no king but Caesar.’

So the Jews were not only rejected by God, but they verbally rejected God and asked for the blood of Jesus to be on them and on their children (all future generations). This is why the prophecies regarding JeruSalem no longer have anything to do with a literal city that is located in Palestine today.

Notice that Paul wrote (at Romans 9:6-8):
‘Now, the word of God didn’t fail, because not all that came from IsraEl are really IsraEl, nor are all of AbraHam’s seed his children.
For [it’s written]:
That which will be called your seed will come through IsaAc.
However, [IsaAc’s] fleshly children aren’t the children of God.
The children of the promise are that seed.’

Then he added at Romans 9:27:

‘Isaiah shouted this about IsraEl:
Although the sons of IsraEl may become as many as the sands of the sea, only a few will be saved.’

And he wrote at Romans 9:30-33:

So we can say that people of the nations (although they weren’t trying to become righteous) became righteous with the [type of] righteousness that comes from faith, while IsraEl (which was following a righteous Law) just didn’t make it!
And why was that so?
Because [IsraEl] didn’t look for it in faith, but in the things that they were doing… they tripped over the stumbling stone!
As it is written:
{Look!} I’m putting a stumbling stone and a rock to trip over in Zion.
But those that have faith in him will never be shamed.

Also, notice what was said – apparently by Jesus himself – hundreds of years before he came to earth as a human, about the Old Sacred Agreement that God had made with IsraEl, as found in the words recorded at Zechariah 11:10-12, 14:

‘Then I’ll take my stick (the one [I called] Beauty),
And I will throw it away,
To erase [God’s] Sacred Agreement with them.

‘It will be erased in that day,
And those in CanaAn that have guarded my sheep Will know that I am The Word of Jehovah.

‘And then, I’ll tell them to do Whatever they find to be good…
Yes, pay my wage or forbid it!

‘So, they established my wage…
It was thirty pieces of silver.

‘That’s when my second stick will be thrown (The one that I called Measured Land).
For I’ll wipe IsraEl and Judah away From [the land] that they’ve [always] owned.’

As you can see;
The Jews (those that practice Judaism) can never be considered righteous as long as they continue to trip over the ‘stumbling stone,’ their promised Messiah, Jesus. (For more information, see the linked document, ‘JeruSalem and the IsraEl of God’).

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