Paul closes his epistle to the churches in Galatia with the benediction, "Peace and mercy to all who follow this rule, even to the Israel of God" (Galatians 6:16; emphasis added). What is meant by the phrase, "even (kai) to the Israel of God"? Grammatically speaking, "kai" can be translated by "even" or by "and." Whenever the grammatical syntax is inconclusive, the historical context may illuminate the particular meaning of a term. The historical background of this epistle indicates that Paul is vehemently rejecting any different status or claim of the Jewish Christians beside or above that of gentile Christians before God.
The Israel of God in Prophecy, page 108.
Note: The author assumes that the Jews who were preaching circumcision were Christians.
Correction: Paul declares anyone who preaches a different gospel is accursed of God.
Galatians 1:6-9 I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.
Consequently, "there is neither Jew nor Greek" in Christ (Galatians 3:26-28). "If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise" (Galatians 3:29). How could language state it any more conclusively and unambiguously? Yet, Paul does not want to be misunderstood and therefore has more to say to those who still claim special promises for ethnic Israel. In Galatians 4:21-31 the apostle radically denies any claim of ethnic Israel to any covenant promise. The Israel of God in Prophecy, page 108.
Correction: The author has confused individual responsibility with the nation of Israel.
Romans 11:25-27 For I do not desire, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own opinion, that hardening in part has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: "The Deliverer will come out of Zion, and He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob; for this is My covenant with them, when I take away their sins."
Note: The promise of God to all individuals who sincerely receive Jesus Christ is eternal life.
John 1:12-13 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor or the will of man, but of God.
John 6:40 "And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day."
Summary: And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them (believing Gentiles), and upon the Israel of God. (believing Jews)
Note: The Jehovah's Witnesses agree with the Amillennial position.
They made known that humans could be adopted as spiritual sons of Jehovah God and become part of a new "Israel of God," a spiritual nation that would 'declare abroad Jehovah's excellencies.' When Paul wrote the book of Romans, Jehovah had already cast off Israel as a nation. The Watchtower, 12/15/97, pages 17-18.
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