Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
August 31, 1967
NUMBER 17, PAGE 8b-9

Why Did The Jews Win The War?

A. H. Payne

The little nation of Israel has won a war. It was the victor against staggering odds. Most of the world looked on with a feeling of sympathy for this little nation, knowing that its destruction would come quickly from the Arab world. But events did not happen that way. The Jews won the war and it was over in four days.

Much of denominational protestantism believes in a future earthly reign of Jesus Christ in the land of Palestine for 1,000 years wherein the resurrected will be given a second chance of salvation, which will include the conversion of the Jews. We are told that the earthly reign of Christ will be preceded by a terrible war in Palestine. Because of faith in this theory every follower of it begins to read the signs of the time when military conflicts occurs within those boundaries.

Why did the Jews win the war? Did they win the war (1) because they hold title to that land as a promise of God to Abraham and were so destined to win that the kingdom could be restored with the earthly reign of Christ? Or, did they win (2) because they out-maneuvered and out-fought the Arabs? The former demands the victory to be a part of a plan ordained of God and revealed in scripture, while the latter has no connection with scripture and is only a victory of might.

The Land

God called Abram from the Ur of Chaldees and made a four-fold promise to him: (1) land, (2) nation, (3) name, (4) blessing. Genesis 12:1-7. God promised the land of Canaan to Abraham and to his seed or descendants. This promise was repeated several times. As we trace the history of Abraham's descendants we come to his great-grand children who go into Egypt with the help of Joseph. In Egypt the children of Jacob grow into a nation and through Moses they are led out of slavery into the wilderness on their march to take the land of Canaan, the land God had promised to Abraham. After 40 years in the wilderness and just before they enter Canaan Moses reads the law the second time. This is recorded in the book of Deuteronomy. Chapters 28 and 29 of this book contain instruction to this nation concerning the land which they were about to possess. Moses set before them "blessings and curse. "In substance he promised a continual blessing if they walked in God's ways and kept themselves from sin, but he pronounced a curse upon the nation if they turned from God and this curse included a scattering and a captivity.

Under the leadership of Joshua these people marched into Canaan and took the land that God had promised them. "And the Lord gave unto Israel all land which he sware to give unto their fathers: and they possessed it, and dwelt therein. And the Lord gave them rest round about, according to all that he sware unto their fathers: and there stood not a man of all their enemies before them; the Lord delivered all their enemies into their hand. There failed not aught of any good thing which die Lord had spoken unto the house of Israel; all came to pass." Joshua 21:43-45. At this point in history God has fulfilled his promise to Abraham and his descendants by giving them the land. The land promise has been fulfilled, now it is up to the Jews to follow God to retain the blessing of the land, but should they turn from God they will surely forfeit their right to the land. The Jews could not then look to God to fulfill the promise again should they loose the land since retaining the land was conditioned upon their faithfulness.

By the year 721 B.C. the northern 10 tribes were in Assyrian Captivity and by 586 B.C. the two southern tribes were in Babylonian Captivity, therefore the land was forfeited by their sins.

National Israel

God had a purpose for Israel. Though they lost the land because of their sin, it was God's plan to preserve a remnant in the land. The 37th chapter of Ezekiel tells of the valley of bones. As Ezekiel beheld this scene he prophesied and commanded the bones to come together and be covered with flesh and skin. Finally breath entered into the bodies and they lived. Ezekiel was in captivity at .this time, but he was foretelling the restoration of the remnant back into the land which they had lost. This was accomplished after 70 years of captivity. Ezra and Nehemiah tell of the rebuilding of the temple and Jerusalem walls. Again a remnant of this nation lived in the land.

What was God's purpose in bringing this remnant back into the land? We must remember that three of God's promises to Abraham had been fulfilled. Why does he yet keep Israel as a nation? God had decreed that through Abraham's seed the world would be blessed and the nation was preserved so that Abraham's descendents would be preserved until the final promise came to pass. "Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ, the promised seed of Abraham, was born.

With the coming of Christ into the world, through Israel, came an ending and a casting-off of national Israel. The allegory of the two women and their sons of Galatians 4:21-31 shows that God has cast off national Israel; he has finished with national Israel in the accomplishing of his purposes. The New Testament and Christians are likened to Sarah and Isaac, while the Old Testament and National Israel are compared with Hagar and Ishmael. "Nevertheless what saith the scripture? Cast out the bondwoman and her son." Gal. 4:30. National Israel served its purpose in preserving a people through which Christ would be born, but now that this has been accomplished they no longer find a place, as a nation, in God's plan.

Why did Israel win the War? Did God fight Israel's battle and overcome the Arab World? No. Israel's victory can not be attributed to direct intervention by God, neither can it be claimed that their existence as a nation in the land that once belonged to them as a promise of God can be attributed to God. God no longer looks upon Israel as his covenant people in their promised land.

Israel's Hope

Israel, through the hands of lawless men, crucified their only hope. Christ is the savior of the world, both Jew and Gentile. The gospel of Christ is for every creature in the world. Matt. 28:18-20. God is no respecter of persons but looks upon man with respect to sin and righteousness. Romans 2-3. Israel's hope lies within the gospel of Christ, for the gospel was sent to Israel. Acts 10:36. Paul said, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek." Romans 1:16. God shows no special favors to the Jews for their hearts are cleansed by faith just as the Gentiles. Acts 15:9.

Conclusion Israel may exist as a nation in international affairs, but they will do so by their own might and cunning. Whatever takes place in that land must not be construed as signs that relate to God's plan of salvation or the second coming of Christ.