Why did God focus on the nation of Israel?

Answer: God told the prophet Amos regarding Israel, “Hear this word which the LORD has spoken against you, sons of Israel, against the entire family which He brought up from the land of Egypt: (2) You only have I chosen among all the families of the earth; Therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities.” (Amos 3:2)

God chose Israel because they were the offspring of His good friend Abraham. “But you, Israel, My servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, Descendant of Abraham My friend, (9) You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, And called from its remotest parts And said to you, ‘You are My servant, I have chosen you and not rejected you. (10) Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.'” (Isa. 41:8-10 NASB)

God promised Israel a special role is plan for man’s salvation. He told Moses in Ex. 19:5,6 (NASB): “‘Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine; (6) and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you shall speak to the sons of Israel.” Israel, if obedient, would become part of the seed that God promised Abraham would bless all the families of the earth. (Gen. 22:!6-18)

However, Israel did not have the faith in God that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob had and so they rejected Jesus as their Messiah. In turn, God rejected them from this very special role as Jesus mentioned when he cast Israel off from God’s favor at the end of his first advent. “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, the way a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were unwilling. (38) Behold, your house is being left to you desolate! (39) For I say to you, from now on you will not see Me until you say, ‘BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD!'” (Matt. 23:37-39 NASB)

However, God has not cast off the nation of Israel forever. Instead, he will recover them and bless them just as He promised Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. “So all Israel will be saved; just as it is written, ‘THE DELIVERER WILL COME FROM ZION, HE WILL REMOVE UNGODLINESS FROM JACOB. (27) THIS IS MY COVENANT WITH THEM, WHEN I TAKE AWAY THEIR SINS.’ (28) From the standpoint of the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but from the standpoint of God’s choice they are beloved for the sake of the fathers.” (Rom. 11:26-28 NASB)

For additional information please see our related booklets and videos below.

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