God’s Plan for Israel - The Warrior's Journey®

God’s Plan for Israel

Author: Chaplain, COL Scott McChrystal, USA (Ret.)

. Photo by is licensed under CC By 2.0

“But if their transgression means riches for the world, and their loss means riches for the Gentiles, how much greater riches will their full inclusion bring.  …  For if their rejection (of the Messiah) brought reconciliation to the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead.”  (Romans 11:12, 15) 

There is a common misconception that many Bible students have about God’s plan to save the Gentiles. They believe that God only took an interest in saving Gentiles because His own people, Israel rejected the Messiah. If that is true, then the verses above make absolutely no sense. For, if the Gentiles were only saved because of Israel’s unbelief, then how could Israel’s return to God possibly benefit them? 

The truth is that the salvation of the Gentiles was always in God’s plan, but it was God’s plan to use Israel to reach them. Look at God’s word to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. “Through you and your Seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Genesis 12:3; 18:18; 22:18; 26:4; 28:14; Psalm 22:27). Look at Moses’ words to Israel in Deuteronomy 4:6-8. There he tells Israel that if they will only keep God’s commandments then they will be a witness to the nations around them. Don’t the stories of Naaman the Syrian and Jonah’s ministry to the Ninevites demonstrate God’s concern for the salvation of Gentiles (2 Kings 5:1-19; Jonah 4:9-11)? Look at the prophecy of Isaiah 49:6: “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and restore the preserved ones of Israel.  I will also make You a light to the nations, so that My salvation may reach the end of the earth.” Israel was to be God’s witness (Isaiah 43:10; 44:8) and channel of blessings to the Gentiles. 

Tragically, Israel failed at this mission. Even when Israel was serving God, they still viewed the Gentiles, with contempt. Israel came to believe its own status as God’s Elect equated to membership in an exclusive club, with no outsiders allowed in. 

What Paul is saying in Romans 11:12, 15 is this: If God could bring the Gentiles to Himself without Israel’s cooperation, then how much more will the world be won when Israel returns to God and fulfills its divinely appointed mission. The sealing of the 144,000 Sons of Israel in Revelation 7:2-14 and the resulting innumerable multitude of Gentile believers may be the fulfillment of what Paul anticipates here. Israel, the natural branches, will be grafted back into the vine and will produce fruit for the world. 


  • As God has a future for Israel, doesn’t he also have a future for us when we fail? 
  • Are Christians ever in danger of forgetting their mission of reaching the lost? 
  • Don’t repeat Israel’s mistake. Be consecrated to God and reach out to the lost. 

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