The Song of Moses Makes a Distinction Between Israel and the Church

Song of Moses

There are a myriad of ways to clearly demonstrate from the Bible that Israel and the Church (i.e. Body of Christ) are not to be understood as the same entity. Here let us consider the example rooted in the Song of Moses:

“They have made me jealous with what is no god; they have provoked me to anger with their idols. So I will make them jealous with those who are no people; I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation.” Deuteronomy 32:21 (ESV)

As the reader is probably aware, the Hebrews en masse never maintained any sort of true faith in YHWH. Eventually the Hebrews would need another people to make them jealous so that some of them would come to know the Messiah (Deut. 18:15) and thus have a salvific relationship with their Creator.  A foolish nation in this context indicates one consisting primarily of Gentiles.  Gentiles were foolish because most of them did not know God (Ps. 14:1).  Just as Deuteronomy 32:21 makes a distinction between national Israel and the foolish or Gentile nation (confirmed as the Church in 1 Pet. 2:9), Paul also makes such a distinction throughout Romans 11. Of interest to this topic is Paul’s allusion to the Song of Moses:

“So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous.” Romans 11:11

Now if the Israel of the Old Testament is supposed to represent the same people of God as those in the Body of Christ, then how do the two provided verses make any sense? Are we to conclude that God’s people are to be made jealous by the same group of God’s people? As ridiculous as this sounds, it would have to be true if there was only one continuous people of God.

I then ask the reader to avoid such erroneous teachings as found in Covenant Theology, Supersessionism, Replacement Theology, etc.  The promises to the Jewish people remain true and have not been transferred to those in the Body of Christ.  Gentiles are in a position to benefit from these blessings due to being grafted into the olive tree (Rom. 11:17).  However, the wild olive shoots are still said to be distinct from the natural (Rom. 11:17-24).  As Christians, we should pray for the eyes of the Jews to be opened and come to know Jesus. We can do our part by magnifying our ministry so that we may make the Jews jealous and thus be used to save some of them.

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