There are two main disputed passages in NT about the meaning of the word “Israel” in New Testament:

“It is not as though God’s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel.” (Rom. 9:6)

“Peace and mercy to all who follow this rule— to the Israel of God.” (Gal. 6:16)

Some authors have used these passages to justify a replacement theology, which teaches that the word Israel was used in relation to the whole church in NT, including gentiles. Therefore, the church, in replacement theology, is seen as a new or a spiritual Israel.

However, we will see graphically how the word “Israel” was applied in NT only to physical descendants of Abraham. Let’s walk step by step, very didactically. First, let us represent all humanity:

HUMANITY 1

 

Now, let us see how humanity can be subdivided, according to biblical terms:

HUMANITY

 

Now, let us identify the physical decedents of Abraham:

HUMANITY 3

 

With all of the above information in mind, we are able now to see how the two disputed passages were applied only to physical descendants of Abraham, never to gentiles, therefore, not implying a replacement theology at all:

NT USE OF THE WORD ISRAEL5

 

By above graphics, we are able to verify that the word Israel was never applied in NT in relation to any category of gentiles, but just phisycal descendents of Abraham, as stated by Dispensationalism.


 

Author: Leonardo Costa