Wednesday, September 18, 2019

The 12 Tribes and the Remnant

The 12 Tribes and the Remnant


British Israelism, the Hebrew Roots Movement, and Commonwealth Theology all teach that when the Northern Kingdom 10 tribes of Israel were taken to captivity in Assyria, they were completely absorbed into the surrounding Gentile nations. As a result, they completely lost their identity through assimilation into those nations, and the myth was born in which the 10 tribes of the Northern Kingdom became the "lost tribes". When it is pointed out that some did return, those supporting that myth go on to say that their return from captivity was in such small numbers that they too eventually disappeared.

As we will see, the Northern Kingdom 10 tribes were not lost forever, for God has always kept a Remnant for Himself.

A Temporary Kingdom Division

In 1Kings 11 we read the reason for, and the means by which the Kingdom of Israel was divided into the two kingdoms.

  • 1Ki 11:9-11 The LORD became angry with Solomon because his heart had turned away from the LORD, the God of Israel, who had appeared to him twice. (10) Although he had forbidden Solomon to follow other gods, Solomon did not keep the LORD's command. (11) So the LORD said to Solomon, "Since this is your attitude and you have not kept my covenant and my decrees, which I commanded you, I will most certainly tear the kingdom away from you and give it to one of your subordinates.

  • 1Ki 11:31-35 Then he said to Jeroboam, "Take ten pieces for yourself, for this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: 'See, I am going to tear the kingdom out of Solomon's hand and give you ten tribes. (32) But for the sake of my servant David and the city of Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, he will have one tribe. (33) I will do this because they have forsaken me and worshiped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Molek the god of the Ammonites, and have not walked in obedience to me, nor done what is right in my eyes, nor kept my decrees and laws as David, Solomon's father, did. (34) "'But I will not take the whole kingdom out of Solomon's hand; I have made him ruler all the days of his life for the sake of David my servant, whom I chose and who obeyed my commands and decrees. (35) I will take the kingdom from his son's hands and give you ten tribes.

The Division Not Forever

The state of the divided kingdom however, would not last forever. At some point, the Northern Kingdom would be restored.

  • 1Ki 11:39 - I will humble David's descendants because of this, but not forever.'"

Ezekiel speaks of the rejoining of the two kingdoms.

  • Eze 37:20-22 Hold before their eyes the sticks you have written on (21) and say to them, 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: I will take the Israelites out of the nations where they have gone. I will gather them from all around and bring them back into their own land. (22) I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel. There will be one king over all of them and they will never again be two nations or be divided into two kingdoms.

The rejoining of the two sticks speaks of the Millennium fulfillment, and is presently being brought to pass. Israel today is returning to the land, and there is little concern with tribal identities.

The Return of the Exiles

Isaiah is very clear regarding the results of the captivity. The Northern Kingdom is referred to as two entities, the first being "the sand of the sea", and the second being "the Remnant".

  • Isa 10:21-22 A remnant will return, a remnant of Jacob will return to the Mighty God. (22) Though your people be like the sand by the sea, Israel, only a remnant will return. Destruction has been decreed, overwhelming and righteous.

The Israelites that did not survive the exile, that were absorbed into the nations were unbelieving Israel, the "sand of the sea". Those are the ones that went into the nations and were assimilated, and supposedly make up the "lost tribes". A Remnant, however, would return to Almighty God, some in the diaspora and some returning to Jerusalem and continue on, and in sufficient numbers to repopulate all 12 tribes, as we shall see.

All Israel Returns

In the return of the Remnant from exile under Zerubbabel, Judah, Levi, and “all Israel” are mentioned. This includes:

Arah from the tribe of Asher (Ezra 2:5 cf. 1Ch 7:39),
Bani from the tribe of Gad (Ezra 2:10 cf. Neh 7:15);
Bethlehem from the tribe of Zebulun (Ezra 2:26 cf. Jos 19:15-16),
Ramah from the tribe of Naphtali (Ezra 2:26 cf. Jos 19:32-39),
Men from Bethel and Ai, towns of the Northern Kingdom (Ezra 2:28),
Nebo from the tribe of Reuben (Ezra 2:29 cf. 1Ch 5:1-8).

2Chronicles fills in the gaps. There were those from EVERY TRIBE who set their hearts on seeking the Lord and followed the Levites to Jerusalem.

  • 2Ch 11:16 Those from every tribe of Israel who set their hearts on seeking the LORD, the God of Israel, followed the Levites to Jerusalem to offer sacrifices to the LORD, the God of their ancestors.

  • 2Ch 15:9-10 Then he assembled all Judah and Benjamin and the people from Ephraim, Manasseh and Simeon who had settled among them, for large numbers had come over to him from Israel when they saw that the LORD his God was with him. (10) They assembled at Jerusalem in the third month of the fifteenth year of Asa's reign.

    2Ch 11:12-16 - "Those from every tribe of Israel"

    2Ch 15:9 - "Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim, Manasseh, Simeon"

    2Ch 30:11 - "Asher, Manasseh, Zebulun"

    2Ch 30:18 - "Ephraim, Manasseh, Issachar, Zebulun"

    2Ch 31:1 - "Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim, Manasseh"

In the above 2 lists, 11 of the tribes are mentioned by name after the return from the exile. Asher, Gad, Zebulun, Manasseh, Ephraim, Simeon, Issachar, Reuben, Naphtali, Judah, and Benjamin. Only Dan is not mentioned.

When the Northern Kingdom was taken into captivity, not all of them were taken. Some members of the northern 10 tribes were left behind in the land when the Northern Kingdom was taken into captivity. These would have remained in the land and reproduced.

  • 2Ki 25:12 But the commander left behind some of the poorest people of the land to work the vineyards and fields.

Daniel recognized members of the Northern Kingdom, all Israel, both near and far.

  • Dan 9:7 "Lord, you are righteous, but this day we are covered with shame--the people of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and all Israel, both near and far, in all the countries where you have scattered us because of our unfaithfulness to you.

References to the 12 Tribes Post Exile

Each tribe was responsible for supplying their own sacrificial goat for the sin offering. All 12 tribes would have needed to be present for there to have been "12 male goats".

  • Ezra 8:35 Then the exiles who had returned from captivity sacrificed burnt offerings to the God of Israel: twelve bulls for all Israel, ninety-six rams, seventy-seven male lambs and, as a sin offering, twelve male goats. All this was a burnt offering to the LORD.

Zechariah referred to Israel separately from Judah, indicating that the Northern Kingdom tribes are not lost at all.

  • Zec 1:19 I asked the angel who was speaking to me, "What are these?" He answered me, "These are the horns that scattered Judah, Israel and Jerusalem."

  • Zec 1:1 8:13 Just as you, Judah and Israel, have been a curse among the nations, so I will save you, and you will be a blessing. Do not be afraid, but let your hands be strong."

  • Zec 10:6 "I will strengthen Judah and save the tribes of Joseph. I will restore them because I have compassion on them. They will be as though I had not rejected them, for I am the LORD their God and I will answer them.

The Time of Jesus

Jesus refers to the 12 tribes:

  • Mat 19:28 Jesus said to them, "Truly I tell you, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

  • Luk 22:29-30 And I confer on you a kingdom, just as my Father conferred one on me, (30) so that you may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.

James refers to the 12 tribes:

  • Jas 1:1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes scattered among the nations: Greetings.

Paul refers to the 12 tribes:

  • Act 26:7 This is the promise our twelve tribes are hoping to see fulfilled as they earnestly serve God day and night. King Agrippa, it is because of this hope that these Jews are accusing me.

In the Future

In the Revelation, the tribes are again listed by name during the Time of Jacob's Trouble, which is still future to us:

  • Rev 7:4-8 Then I heard the number of those who were sealed: 144,000 from all the tribes of Israel. Vs 5-8:
    From the tribe of Judah 12,000 were sealed,
    from the tribe of Reuben 12,000,
    from the tribe of Gad 12,000,
    from the tribe of Asher 12,000,
    from the tribe of Naphtali 12,000,
    from the tribe of Manasseh 12,000,
    from the tribe of Simeon 12,000,
    from the tribe of Levi 12,000,
    from the tribe of Issachar 12,000,
    from the tribe of Zebulun 12,000,
    from the tribe of Joseph 12,000,
    from the tribe of Benjamin 12,000.

Ezekiel mentions 12 tribes who are still in existence at the time of the division of the land in the Millennium:

  • Eze 47:21 "You are to distribute this land among yourselves according to the tribes of Israel.

  • Eze 48:1-7 "These are the tribes, listed by name: At the northern frontier,
    Dan will have one portion; it will follow the Hethlon road to Lebo Hamath; Hazar Enan and the northern border of Damascus next to Hamath will be part of its border from the east side to the west side.
    (2) "Asher will have one portion; it will border the territory of Dan from east to west.
    (3) "Naphtali will have one portion; it will border the territory of Asher from east to west.
    (4) "Manasseh will have one portion; it will border the territory of Naphtali from east to west.
    (5) "Ephraim will have one portion; it will border the territory of Manasseh from east to west.
    (6) "Reuben will have one portion; it will border the territory of Ephraim from east to west.
    (7) "Judah will have one portion; it will border the territory of Reuben from east to west.

The 12 tribes have a continuous presence all through the timeline of Scripture in the Remnant. Scripture is explicit about this.


Reviewing the passage from Isaiah once again:

  • Isa 10:21-22 A remnant will return, a remnant of Jacob will return to the Mighty God. (22) Though your people be like the sand by the sea, Israel, only a remnant will return. Destruction has been decreed, overwhelming and righteous.

It was Israel, the "sand of the sea" that was absorbed into the nations and assimilated, not Israel "the remnant".

Israel today consists of descendants from all 12 tribes. They existed as the Remnant in post exilic times and clearly maintained an awareness of which tribes the were from.

Even at the time of Jesus many still had awareness of which tribe they were descended from. Paul knew he was from the tribe of Benjamin, Anna knew she was from the tribe of Asher (Luk_2:36), and obviously the Levite’s would have known their tribe. Jesus, James, and Paul made explicit references to the 12 tribes.

Although it is likely today that many Jews are unaware of their tribal genealogy. The fact of the matter is we are all told not to concern ourselves with such matters in Tit_3:9. Nevertheless, there is no reason not to take a literal view of the future restoration of the 12 tribes as the prophecies name them explicitly in the 144,000 as well as the division of the land in the Millennial Kingdom.


Monday, June 24, 2019

Hebrews Chapter 01

The Book of Hebrews

Chapter 1


"our ancestors" - This would be the ancestors of the Jewish people to who the book is addressed.

"spoke in various ways" - Supernatural interventions into history as well as storms, plagues, historical events.

"through the prophets" - Major and Minor prophets. God spoke in visions, dreams, and face-to-face communication

Num_12:6-8 he said, "Listen to my words: "When there is a prophet among you, I, the LORD, reveal myself to them in visions, I speak to them in dreams. (7) But this is not true of my servant Moses; he is faithful in all my house. (8) With him I speak face to face, clearly and not in riddles; he sees the form of the LORD. Why then were you not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?"

2Pe_1:21 For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.


"last days" - The last days began with Jesus, and the character of Jesus revelation is of culmination. The end is in sight.

"spoken to us by His Son" - Through Jesus as He walked the earth, and after His ascension through the apostles, the ensuing books of the Bible.

Act_1:1-2 In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach (2) until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen.

This continues the plan of progressive revelation.

  • Patriarchs - through physical interaction - Adam and Eve Gen_3:8-24, Cain Gen_4:1-16.
  • Patriarchs - through spiritual interaction - Enoch Gen_5:24, Noah Gen_6:13-14.
  • Patriarchs - dreams and visions - Abraham Gen_15:1, Abimelech Gen_20:3, Jacob Gen_31:1-11, Joseph - J, Nathan - 2Sa_7:17.
  • Patriarchs - physical interaction - Jacob - Gen_32:24-25, Burning Bush Exo_3:2, Plagues Exo_5:1, Red Sea - Exo_14:22.

  • Mosaic Period - Law (God's nature, pointing to Christ) Exo_20:22, Law (tutor) Gal_3:24-25.
  • Mosaic Period - Spiritual Awareness (God's external interactions, combined with internal dreams and visions are now joined to the divine regulations to start waking up the spiritual man.)
  • Mosaic Period - Dwelling with Man - The Ark Exo_25:21-22, Tabernacle Exo_25:21-22.
  • Mosaic Period - Continued physical, dream and vision - Cloud Exo_19:9, Manna Exo_16:35, Conquest through Joshua.
  • Davidic Period (Primarily external still) - David - Psa_51:11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me, Othniel - Jdg_3:10, Gideon - Jdg_6:34, Saul and his messengers - 1Sa_10:10, 1Sa_19:20.
  • Prophetic Period - Minor and Major Prophets - Bring awareness of inward working of God and bring them back to God. Declare relationship between God's and man's Spirit.
  • Immanuel Period - God with us - Isa_7:14, If you have seen me, you have seen the Father Joh_14:9.
  • Pentecostal Period - The presence of the Holy Spirit - Joe_2:28 And it will happen afterward thus: I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh, and your sons and your daughters will prophesy, and your elders will dream dreams; your young men shall see visions.
    1Co_3:16-17 Do you not know that you are God's temple and the Spirit of God dwells in you? (17) If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy this one. For God's temple is holy, which you are.

  • The Future - Us with God - Joh_14:2 In my Father's house there are many dwelling places; but if not, I would have told you, because I am going away to prepare a place for you.
    Rev_21:22 And I did not see a temple in it, for the Lord God All-Powerful is its temple, and the Lamb.

"heir of all things" - His name is above every name

Php_2:9-11 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, (10) that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, (11) and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Psa_2:8 Ask me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession.

"made the universe" - creator of matter and history

Joh_1:3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

Col_1:16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.


"the radiance of God's glory" - Jesus is what shines out from the Father.

Mat_17:1-2 After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. (2) There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light.

"the exact representation of His being" - precise duplication

Joh_14:9 Jesus answered: "Don't you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?

"sustaining things by His powerful word" - moves all things forward on their appointed course

Col_1:17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

"provided purification of sins" - much more will be said about this in the future chapters.

"sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven" - conveys Christ's royal power unparalleled glory.

Psa_110:1-2 Of David. A psalm. The LORD says to my lord: "Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet." (2) The LORD will extend your mighty scepter from Zion, saying, "Rule in the midst of your enemies!"

Present rulership is over the church and heavenly angelic hosts.

Eph_4:15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.

Col_1:18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.

Col_2:10 and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority.

Future rulership is over Israel in the Millennial Kingdom

Isa_9:6-7 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. (7) Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David's throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the LORD Almighty will accomplish this.

Dan_2:44 "In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever.

Dan_7:13-14 "In my vision at night I looked, and there before me was one like a son of man, coming with the clouds of heaven. He approached the Ancient of Days and was led into his presence. (14) He was given authority, glory and sovereign power; all nations and peoples of every language worshiped him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion that will not pass away, and his kingdom is one that will never be destroyed.


The Jewish people were under pressure to abandon their belief in Messiah and return to the Mosaic system of Judaism. The previous 7 actions would demonstrate to the Jewish people the full diety of Jesus and His superiority of any other messengers from the outset of the letter.

It is likely that the Jewish readers regarded angels too highly. Angels are very important to the Jewish people. Multitudes of angels were involved with them in the Old Testament. Explaining that Jesus was superior to the angels would help them to get a proper perspective of Jesus.


Two terms for Christ are the focus of the letter to the Hebrews, as we see going through the chapters:

  1. Son of God - Jesus is God's Son, which the previous 7 actions declare. Jesus is better, higher than the angels as God's Son. As we read through the letter, we should understand the term "Son of God" as a term signifying Jesus's superiority.

Deu_33:2 He said: "The LORD came from Sinai and dawned over them from Seir; he shone forth from Mount Paran. He came with myriads of holy ones from the south, from his mountain slopes.

Psa_68:17 The chariots of God are tens of thousands and thousands of thousands; the Lord has come from Sinai into his sanctuary.

Gal_3:19 Why, then, was the law given at all? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come. The law was given through angels and entrusted to a mediator.

This position of Jesus as higher than the angels is also cautionary to those who claim to be angelic mediators who claim to connect the living with angelic beings or dead relatives. These practices are found in cults and New Age occultic proponents. Finding a "spiritual guide" or "channeling are other examples. Jesus is higher than the angels and the biblical revelation about these subjects.

  1. High Priest - will be the subject of much of the following chapters.


The seven quotes:

"You are my Son; today I have become your Father" - The writer to Hebrews appeals to his Jewish readers on the basis of David's declaration in Psa_2:7 that Jesus is the fulfillment of Messianic prophecy. Angels were referred to as "sons of God", but never as a "Son of God". Only Jesus has the name "Son of God".

Psa_2:7 I will proclaim the LORD's decree: He said to me, "You are my son; today I have become your father.

"I will be His Father, and He will be my Son" - a reinforcement to the above quote.

1Ch_17:13 I will be his father, and he will be my son. I will never take my love away from him, as I took it away from your predecessor.


"Let all God's angels worship Him." - A second reinforcement.


"He makes His angels spirits, and His servants flames of fire" - Angels are created as spirits, powerful, invisible, and servants of a higher power whom they serve with judgment and illumination. They are servants, unlike the Son of God, who's role is to rule.

Psa_104:4 He makes winds his messengers, flames of fire his servants.


"Your throne, oh God, will last forever and ever..." - This is another quote showing the difference between Jesus and angels. The Son will rule, not serve. His throne is unending, not changing. The Son exercises royal power, and the angels are ministers.

Psa_45:6-7 Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom. (7) You love righteousness and hate wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.


"In the beginning Lord, you laid the foundations of the earth..." - The 6th quote, shows that the Son is immutable, unchanging. As the creator living out side of creation, He is the cause of change, but is not affected by that change. This cannot be said of the angels, who are also created.

Psa_102:25-27 In the beginning you laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. (26) They will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment. Like clothing you will change them and they will be discarded. (27) But you remain the same, and your years will never end.


"Sit at my right hand..." - The 7th and last quote, angels stand and serve, Jesus sits and rules. The vindication here is that of the second coming, and His future rule on David's earthly throne in Jerusalem.

Psa_110:1 Of David. A psalm. The LORD says to my lord: "Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet."


A primary purpose for angels is revealed in this verse. They are ministers of those who will inherit salvation. They assist humans in achieving deliverance against our enemies, and bringing all humans to salvation.

"inherit" - Inheritance is usually a term used of something someone receives through a will, not through any action on their own part. Our inheritance is all that God wants to give us. We will receive an inheritance, however, we are liable to lose some of that inheritance through unfaithfulness, as in the case of Esau.

Heb_12:16-17 See that no one is sexually immoral, or is godless like Esau, who for a single meal sold his inheritance rights as the oldest son. (17) Afterward, as you know, when he wanted to inherit this blessing, he was rejected. Even though he sought the blessing with tears, he could not change what he had done.

A part of our inheritance is rewards. Like our inheritance, we can forfeit rewards based on our actions while alive on earth.

1Co_3:6-15 I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. (7) So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. (8) The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. (9) For we are co-workers in God's service; you are God's field, God's building. (10) By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. (11) For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. (12) If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, (13) their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person's work. (14) If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. (15) If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved--even though only as one escaping through the flames.

The closing passage is an encouragement to the readers. It details Jesus's right to rule in the coming Millennial Kingdom, based on 7 respects:

  1. He is the Son of God (Heb_1:5 a).
  2. He is the promised son of David (Heb_1:5 b).
  3. He is the sovereign whom angels worship as Yahweh (Heb_1:6).
  4. His ministry is not that of a temporary servant like the angels (Heb_1:7).
  5. His ministry is that of the eternal ruler (Heb_1:8-9).
  6. He is the immutable creator (Heb_1:10-12).
  7. He is the sovereign who will rule as victor over all His enemies (Heb_1:13).

Thursday, March 7, 2019

I Will Be Their God, and They Will Be My People

The Holy Spirit

"I Will Be Their God, and They Will Be My People"

A Marriage Covenant

The term "I will be their God, and they will be my people" is generally recognized as "the covenant formula". This formula is derived from ancient legal terminology, specifically regarding the marriage ceremony. (The Expository Notes of Dr. Constable - Eze 11:19-20) In marriage "the two become one flesh". Throughout scripture, God's declaration of being Israel's God and Israel being His people is His statement of intent to have an intimate "one flesh" relationship with them.
Gen 2:24 That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.
Paul picks up on this as a type of God and the church in the New Testament. This shows the eventual goal of a "one flesh" relationship not only with Israel, but with the Gentiles who become a part of His body.
Eph 5:31-32 "For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh." (32) This is a profound mystery--but I am talking about Christ and the church.

Col 1:25-27 I have become its servant by the commission God gave me to present to you the word of God in its fullness-- (26) the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the Lord's people. (27) To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.

Joh 17:20-23 "My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, (21) that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. (22) I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one-- (23) I in them and you in me--so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. 

1Jn 4:12-13 No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. (13) This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit.

These passages show that God's intent through the ages was and is to live within Jew and Gentile alike as one (Col 1:25-27).

God's plan was for Israel, to be their God, and they His people. The out working of this intent on God's part began at Mt. Sinai with the Israelites.
Exo 6:7 I will take you as my own people, and I will be your God. Then you will know that I am the LORD your God, who brought you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians.
 Through this marriage, Israel would be a light to the nations to bring them into relationship with God as well.

Exo 19:5-6 Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, (6) you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.' These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites."

Isa 42:6 "I, the LORD, have called you in righteousness; I will take hold of your hand. I will keep you and will make you to be a covenant for the people and a light for the Gentiles,

Isa 49:6 he says: "It is too small a thing for you to be my servant to restore the tribes of Jacob and bring back those of Israel I have kept. I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth."

Act 26:22-23 But God has helped me to this very day; so I stand here and testify to small and great alike. I am saying nothing beyond what the prophets and Moses said would happen-- (23) that the Messiah would suffer and, as the first to rise from the dead, would bring the message of light to his own people and to the Gentiles."

Israel's Rejection

In Gen 17:7-8 God says the the purpose of the Abrahamic Covenant was "to be your God and the God of your descendants after you".
Gen 17:7-8 I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you. (8) The whole land of Canaan, where you now reside as a foreigner, I will give as an everlasting possession to you and your descendants after you; and I will be their God."
The presentation of the Marriage Covenant was on Mt. Sinai about two to three months after the Israelites had been freed from Egyptian slavery.
Exo 6:6-8 "Therefore, say to the Israelites: 'I am the LORD, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with mighty acts of judgment. (7) I will take you as my own people, and I will be your God. Then you will know that I am the LORD your God, who brought you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. (8) And I will bring you to the land I swore with uplifted hand to give to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob. I will give it to you as a possession. I am the LORD.'"
God's intent was to make them kingdom of priests. Each individual Israelite would be a priest to those around them bringing unbelievers to the knowledge of God, aka bring a light to the Gentiles.
Exo 19:5-6 Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, (6) you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.' These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites."
Israel failed in this mission, and the reason they failed is their rejection of Him who would have given them the power to be priests. They resisted the Holy Spirit, and turned to idolatry instead.

Moses records the actual response of the Israelites:
Exo 20:18-19 When the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear. They stayed at a distance (19) and said to Moses, "Speak to us yourself and we will listen. But do not have God speak to us or we will die."

Deu 5:22-27 These are the commandments the LORD proclaimed in a loud voice to your whole assembly there on the mountain from out of the fire, the cloud and the deep darkness; and he added nothing more. Then he wrote them on two stone tablets and gave them to me. (23) When you heard the voice out of the darkness, while the mountain was ablaze with fire, all the leaders of your tribes and your elders came to me. (24) And you said, "The LORD our God has shown us his glory and his majesty, and we have heard his voice from the fire. Today we have seen that a person can live even if God speaks with them. (25) But now, why should we die? This great fire will consume us, and we will die if we hear the voice of the LORD our God any longer. (26) For what mortal has ever heard the voice of the living God speaking out of fire, as we have, and survived? (27) Go near and listen to all that the LORD our God says. Then tell us whatever the LORD our God tells you. We will listen and obey."

Deu 5:4-5 The LORD spoke to you face to face out of the fire on the mountain. (5) (At that time I stood between the LORD and you to declare to you the word of the LORD, because you were afraid of the fire and did not go up the mountain.) And he said:
Jeremiah looks back at the Exodus from Egypt and sheds light on what God's intent was at that time, "I will be their God, and they will be my people", and the Israelite response.
Jer 7:22-24 For when I brought your ancestors out of Egypt and spoke to them, I did not just give them commands about burnt offerings and sacrifices, (23) but I gave them this command: Obey me, and I will be your God and you will be my people. Walk in obedience to all I command you, that it may go well with you. (24) But they did not listen or pay attention; instead, they followed the stubborn inclinations of their evil hearts. They went backward and not forward.
Phillip also looked back at this event and reflected on their resistance of the Holy Spirit when he said:
Act 7:51 "You stiff-necked people! Your hearts and ears are still uncircumcised. You are just like your ancestors: You always resist the Holy Spirit!
The term "I will be their God, and they will be my people" has great meaning. Paul explains the application of the term, and what it means for us today. He clearly associates "I will be their God and they will be my people" with the indwelling Holy Spirit.
2Co 6:16 "... For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people."
God is the same yesterday as today. It is clear reading through the history of the Israelites that they had rejected God's offer to be their God, and they to be His people and forfeited the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. Throughout scripture, there is a unmistakable and direct connection between "I will be your God, and you will be my people" and the indwelling Spirit. Notice the connection in these passages speaking of the New Covenant:
Eze 11:19-20 I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. (20) Then they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. They will be my people, and I will be their God.

Eze 36:26-28 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. (27) And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. (28) Then you will live in the land I gave your ancestors; you will be my people, and I will be your God.

Eze 37:26-27 I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant. I will establish them and increase their numbers, and I will put my sanctuary among them forever. (27) My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people.

Zec 8:8 I will bring them back to live in Jerusalem; they will be my people, and I will be faithful and righteous to them as their God."

Heb 8:10 This is the covenant I will establish with the people of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.

The Consequence of Israel's Rejection

The original intent of the Covenant at Sinai then cannot be anything less than God's desire to put the Spirit of God inside the individual Israelite by which they would become a nation of priests and mediators between God and man. They failed in this mission, the source of which was their rejection at Mt. Sinai to come near to God. Through disobedience to go up the mountain to meet Him, and by asking for a mediator between themselves and God, they fell short of God's plan to place his Holy Spirit in them. (Exo 20:18-19, Deu 5:22-27, ref above).

God did not reject the Israelites because of this however, and agreed to satisfy their request.
Deu 5:28-33 The LORD heard you when you spoke to me, and the LORD said to me, "I have heard what this people said to you. Everything they said was good. (29) Oh, that their hearts would be inclined to fear me and keep all my commands always, so that it might go well with them and their children forever! (30) "Go, tell them to return to their tents. (31) But you stay here with me so that I may give you all the commands, decrees and laws you are to teach them to follow in the land I am giving them to possess." (32) So be careful to do what the LORD your God has commanded you; do not turn aside to the right or to the left. (33) Walk in obedience to all that the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess.
It was the Israelites request for a mediator that brought about the occasion of God giving to Moses the commands, decrees, and laws.
Deu 5:31  But you stay here with me so that I may give you all the commands, decrees and laws you are to teach them to follow in the land I am giving them to possess."
The Tabernacle was one of the provisions that resulted from Israel's resistance of the Holy Spirit (Ex 26:1, Ex 36:1). The construction of a Tabernacle was for the purpose of providing a dwelling place for God, where He could be among His people, but not in them (Ex 40:33-35). The instruction to construct a tabernacle is itself strong evidence showing the consequence of Israel's resistance of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit would not indwell the Israelites, but rather, He would be among them in the tabernacle. Today, as would have been the case then, there is no need for a Tabernacle or Temple, because individuals are the temple of God.
2Co 6:16 "... For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people."

The Provision of Mosaic Law

In the absence of the indwelling Holy Spirit, Israel was given a guardian, or tutor to provide instruction that the Holy Spirit would have otherwise provided. Paul explains why the law was given:
Gal 3:19 Why, then, was the law given at all? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come. The law was given through angels and entrusted to a mediator.
This verse is linked inextricably to the rejection of the Holy Spirit at Mt. Sinai. It was at Mt. Sinai that the law was given, and it was at Mt. Sinai that the law was entrusted to the mediator. This verse refers to Deu 5:31, in which God tells Moses (the mediator) to remain so He can give Him the law.  The Israelites failed to be a party to God's statement, "I will be their God, and they will be my people". They stayed back in fear, received the law, and requested a mediator, and God lived among them in the Tabernacle but not in them.

The role of the Mosaic Law was teacher, the one who convicts and guide for the Israelites, and that is the very role of the Holy Spirit, whom they were lacking. The instruction the Holy Spirit provides is teaching in all things, conviction of sin and guidance into all truth.
Joh 14:26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

Joh 16:8 When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment:

Joh 16:13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.
The written law came about because of the Israelites rejection of the one who would teach them, convict them, and guide them, and became their tutor until the Holy Spirit would be poured out on all flesh.

Further support for the temporal nature of the Mosaic Law is given in several passages.  Mosaic Law was given "until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come". Jesus, buy His death, burial and resurrection cleared the way for the Holy Spirit to indwell us.
Joh 16:7 But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.
It is because Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to indwell us that both Jews and Gentiles are now realizing the fulfillment of "I will be their God, and they will be my people".
2Co 6:16 "... For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: "I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people."
Gal 3:14 He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.
The original intent of the Mosaic Covenant has been fulfilled in us, both Israel and Gentiles. Peter clearly brings this out. Remembering the chronology with respect to giving the law, God tells the Israelites that THEY would be the kingdom of priests, something that they never achieved.
Exo 19:5-6 Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, (6) you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.' These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites."
Compare with Peter's reference to this passage where he shows that this intent has been fulfilled in those who believe.
1Pe 2:7-9 Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe, "The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone," (8) and, "A stone that causes people to stumble and a rock that makes them fall." They stumble because they disobey the message--which is also what they were destined for. (9) But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
The Mosaic Covenant has been fulfilled. The Holy Spirit has come to indwell His people, and the Covenant is complete. We now live in the newness of the Spirit, and not in the old way of the letter of the law.
2Co 3:2-6 You yourselves are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. (3) You show that you are a letter from Christ, the result of our ministry, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. (4) Such confidence we have through Christ before God. (5) Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. (6) He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant--not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.


The Mosaic Covenant and the Holy Spirit are inseparable from each other. The Mosaic Covenant came into existence to fulfill the provisions of the Abrahamic Covenant. Those terms include Israel becoming a great nation, being blessed, and being a blessing to the nations.

Israel's ability to become such a people was clearly linked to it's relationship with the Holy Spirit, as realized in the marriage covenant language of two becoming one flesh through God being their God, and they being His people.

Unfortunately, Israel resisted the Holy Spirit, who would have been their internal spiritual guide, teacher, and the one who convicts of sin, but they resisted the Holy Spirit and by association, the Holy Spirit's conviction, guidance and teaching. Not to leave the Israelites without guidance, God agreed with their request to stay at a distance and have a mediator. He provided them with the Law of Moses to act as a guide, teacher and the one who convicts of sin until such a time as the Holy Spirit was once again made available to fulfill that role on the day of Pentecost.