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All Eyes on Israel
Chapter 2 - Is Modern Israel the Israel of Promise?
Page 11 - Christian Era Historical Evidence
(Go Back to Page 10 - Was Jesus a Jew?)

Christian Era Historical Evidence
In the book "The Thirteenth Tribe" (1976) author Arthur Koestler maintains that the majority of modern "Jews," the Ashkenazim "Jews", are really Khazars, from Khazaria, an area that later became part of Russia. In his book Koestler:

"traces the history of the ancient Khazar Empire, a major but almost forgotten power in Eastern Europe, which in the Dark Ages became converted to Judaism. Khazaria, which flourished from the seventh to the eleventh century, was finally wiped out by the forces of Genghis Khan, but evidence indicates that the Khazars themselves migrated to Poland and formed the cradle of Western Jewry. . ."

Koestler also writes:

"The Jews of our times fall into two main divisions: Sephardim and Ashkenazim. The Sephardim are descendants of the Jews who since antiquity had lived in Spain (in Hebrew Sepharad) until they were expelled at the end of the fifteenth century and settled in the countries bordering on the Mediterranean, the Balkans, and to a lesser extent in Western Europe. They spoke a Spanish-Hebrew dialect, Ladino, and preserved their own traditions and religious rites. In the 1960s, the number of Sephardim was estimated at 5 million.

It is interesting that Paul expressed a desire to travel to Spain (Romans 15:24,28). It's possible that interest was because of a Jewish population residing there early in the Christian era.

Another author gives evidence from genetics:

"The findings of physical anthropology show that, contrary to popular view, there is no Jewish race. Anthropometric measurements of Jewish groups in many parts of the world indicate that they differ greatly from one another with respect to all the important physical characteristics - stature, weight, skin color, cephalic index, facial index, blood groups, etc." (Raphael Patai, Enc. Brit. (1973), Vol XII, p. 1054)

The word of God to Abraham (and generally throughout His revelations to man) begins with a command ("get thee out of thy country"), continues with a promise ("And I will make of thee a great nation") and ends with a blessing ("in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed"). The promises of God are fulfilled and His blessings received as His commands are obeyed. The blessing comes from obedience, not from heredity.

"Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from they kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will show thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed." (Gen 12:1-3) (Not just "Jewish" families).

This is interpreted by many modern Christians to mean that God will bless those who act in a certain way towards who they believe to be God's chosen people in the nation of Israel. However, God's real objective is to have people join with spiritual Israel as anyone is free to do. If a person is "in thee" ("in" Abraham) they will be blessed; blessed because they then (when "in" Abraham) share in the covenant promises - the blessings that come with obedience.

The word of God to Abraham (and generally throughout His revelations to man) begins with a command ("get thee out of thy country"), continues with a promise ("And I will make of thee a great nation") and ends with a blessing ("in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed"). The promises of God are fulfilled and His blessings received as His commands are obeyed. The blessing comes from obedience, not from heredity.

In the Christian era, it is the same as in Old Testament times - a faith relationship with God qualifies a person to be part of spiritual Israel:

"And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise." (Gal 3:29)
 


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