Israel is ‘Not Forgotten’ (Part 2)

Aug 30, 2010 No Comments by

The Forever Word

By Ron Ross,

“Remember these things, O Jacob,
And Israel, for you are My servant;
I have formed you, you are My servant,
O Israel, you will not be forgotten by Me.” (Isaiah 44:21

Part 2: Jacob: From Trickster to Patriarch
30th August, 2010

It is puzzling how so many bible teachers and pastors avoid ‘Israel’ as a seriously relevant and integrated topic for strong biblical faith.
The church is famous for making over-the-top, all-conquering proclamations only to end up fizzling out and looking silly.

There is an important reason. God said many times, He will never forget Israel and yet the people of today, who profess to serve Him, ignore His priorities. God Himself is shut out of church plans and goals. Submission requires that He is Lord and to be united one with Him, we must seek Him with all our heart.

I know that when my father taught me during my childhood, when he said some item was an important factor for me to engage, then we worked on it together. As I remember there were consequences when I ignored his wisdom.

God the Father has a special interest in Israel and throughout the entire bible he repeats that this should be something we investigate, appreciate and embrace for our own benefit and certainly for His divine purposes.

We are studying Isaiah 44: 21 but consider Isaiah 43: 1 “But now, thus says the Lord, your Creator, O Jacob, and He who formed you, O Israel, ‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine!’”

If God is committed to the Israel-redemption process, how can it be that church leaders, bishops, pastors, priests and bible teachers ignore the fact?

His Inheritance

Can it be that the Lord who wept over Jerusalem, is now weeping over a disobedient bride?

Why would His church seek to deny the Lord His portion, His inheritance?

Israel is His portion. “For the Lord’s portion is His people; Jacob is the allotment of His inheritance.” (Deut. 32: 9)

Isaiah connects Jacob and Israel as one and the same thing.

The Exhaustive Dictionary of Bible Names describes the meaning of the name Jacob = He will supplant; he that supplants; he that follows after; a heeler; one who trips up; supplanter; a detainer.”

The name Jacob means ‘the one who trips up’ and yet he is chosen by the Lord to be a patriarch of Eretz Israel. In fact the Lord changes the name Jacob to Israel after they wrestled together.

It may be you can relate to Jacob. He was the son of Isaac and Rebekah and the brother of Esau. He was a trickster. We might even consider harsher words to describe him like deceiver, but despite his flaws Jacob was blessed.

Sometimes the Lord blesses so graciously that it challenges our way of thinking. It is quite a challenge to accept the divine name-change of Jacob to Israel!

Israel means “he will be a prince with God; prince with God; contender of God; he strives with God; soldier of God; God will rule; God ruled man; ruling with God; one that prevails with God.” (The Exhaustive Dictionary of Bible Names)

This is an illuminating study. By divine choice Jacob becomes the Israel who strives with God, who will be ruling with God and ‘one that prevails with God.” Surely this is a study Christians will find worth doing and a topic worth understanding.

Church attendances and Christian influence in so many places is on the downturn. Even in Australia, we have a candidate for Prime Minister who refused to embrace the Bible and in America there is open debate over whether President Obama is a Moslem or a Christian. If the Church is not anointed and blessed of God, consequences are certain.

It is inspiring that the Lord chose Jacob, the trickster, the one who trips up, and called on him to be a soldier of God and one that prevails with Him.

This insight encourages me and inspires me to seek after the Lord and His Word more and more.

We will continue our study of Isaiah 44: 21 to get the wisdom of God who called Israel to be His servant.

He is doing that even today and by so many churches ignoring His Word, our nations cities, towns and villages are suffering.

By the way, ‘the word of our God stands forever.’ So don’t let any smooth-talking, charismatic false prophet tell you any different.

“The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever.” (Isaiah 40: 8)

And by the way, those who believe the Old Testament words don’t matter anymore Jesus said: “For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law until all is accomplished.” (Matt. 5:18)

Maybe the problem is not a dearth of poor politicians but a bunch of Christians who spend more time on prosperity and lucky charm prayers than being washed in the actual word of God.

Bible Blog

About the author

Ron Ross worked as the first Sports Editor at WINTV. In Wollongong. He ran The Hamburger Hut an outreach and discipleship program for youth. He served with Youth With a Mission in Hawaii, Philippines and Australia. He was senior pastor of the Noosa Baptist Church, Queensland for 9 years. He reported news from Jerusalem for five years and is now the Middle East correspondent for United Christian Broadcasters and travels regularly preaching and teaching.
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