12 Reasons Why Supersessionism / Replacement Theology Is Not a Biblical Doctrine

Michael Vlach, author of Has the Church Replaced Israel?: A Theological Evaluation, gives 12 reasons why Replacement Theology ought to be replaced.

“I think we do not attach sufficient importance to the restoration of the Jews. We do not think enough of it. But certainly, if there is anything promised in the Bible it is this.”

–Charles H. Spurgeon

“To argue that God replaced Israel with the church is to depart from an enormous body of biblical evidence.”

–Walter C. Kaiser, Jr.

Supersessionism is the view that the New Testament Church supersedes, replaces, or fulfills the nation Israel’s place and role in the plan of God. I am convinced that supersessionism / replacement theology is an unbiblical doctrine that violates clear statements in both the Old and New testaments that teach and affirm a national salvation and restoration of Israel. Below are twelve reasons why supersessionism violates the biblical witness:

1. The Old Testament explicitly teaches the restoration of the nation Israel.

2. The Old Testament explicitly promises the perpetuity of the nation Israel (see Jer. 31:35-37).

3. The New Testament reaffirms the Old Testament expectation of a salvation and restoration of Israel.

4. The New Testament explicitly states that the Old Testament promises and covenants to Israel are still the possession of Israel even during this church age and even while the nation is currently in a state of unbelief (see Romans 9:3b-4).

5. The New Testament indicates that God is faithful to Israel because of His promises to the patriarchs of Israel (Romans 11:28).

6. The New Testament indicates that Israel’s election/calling is irrevocable (Romans 11:29; see also Deuteronomy 7:6-8).

7. The New Testament never uses the term “Israel” for those who are not ethnic Jews. Thus, the church is never called “Israel.”

8. Supersessionists have failed to show that the New Testament identifies the church as “Israel.”

9. Supersessionists have failed to show that the New Testament reinterprets or alters the original OT prophecies in regard to Israel. The alleged “NT Priority” approach of Supersessionism is really ‘structural supersessionism’—a hermeneutic that does not allow the OT passages to speak to the issues they address.

10. Supersessionists have failed to show that unity between Jews and Gentiles in the church rules out a future restoration of the nation Israel.

11. Israelite language applied to believing Gentiles does not mean the church is Israel.

12. New Testament prophecy refers to Israel, thus indicating that God’s plan for Israel is alive.

Read the full referenced article here.

6 thoughts on “12 Reasons Why Supersessionism / Replacement Theology Is Not a Biblical Doctrine”

  1. Both Spurgeon and Kaiser have speculated that future, national Israel is an Old Testament, ethnic entity untouched by the New Testament’s proclamation of the everlasting Gospel. This delusion, grounded in the dogma of Israel-Church distinction, assumes that what the Lord Jesus had accomplished during His ministry on earth, by His atoning death and in His glorious resurrection, had left Israel ‘unrestored’. The entire New Testament, and the letter to the Hebrews, in particular, confirm the very opposite. They celebrate the finality and the perfection of God’s work for Israel in His Son: “…let us [the Hebrews of Israel] run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God (Hebrews 2:1,2).”

    Accordingly, “…if there is anything promised in the Bible it is this,” that the so-called “restoration of the Jews” is absolutely inseparable from individual conversion to Messiah Jesus who, as prophecy foretold, bore the Cross for His people at Calvary: “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high (Hebrews 1:1-3).”

    Hence, the heart of the “enormous body of biblical evidence” proclaims that God has completely fulfilled (not ‘replaced’) Israel in the Church Body of the Lord Jesus, “And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence (Colossians 1:18).”

    In Messiah Jesus, “the restoration of the Jews” is an accomplished fact–unless one believes He did not perform God’s will for His Hebrew people: “Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all (Hebrews 10:9,10).”

    To doubt whether God, in the Person and work of His Son, has restored and fulfilled Israel is to deny the Lord Jesus’ own teaching to His Jewish disciples: “And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem (Luke 24:44-47).

    Peter, subsequently, would cite Jewish scripture when referring to “…you, therefore, which believe…,” as “a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light (1 Peter 2:9).”

    Truly, when the Lord Jesus, in His prayer to His Father, said, “I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do (John 17:4),” His work spoke directly to “the restoration of the Jews.” His words. therefore, provide the single, undeniable reason why Israel-Church Distinctionism is not a biblical doctrine, but an expression of “the doctrines of devils (1 Timothy 4:1).”

  2. B.A. Gridd,

    Any communication (written, verbal) has reliable meaning only if one uses the
    “common sense” understanding (hermeneutics) to discern the intended information.
    This common-sense-hermeneutics called: “grammatico-historical” hermeneutics,
    only used by dispensational theologians, and for example: lawyers (your constitution),
    engineers, or anybody else in society who are not imbeciles.:)
    If one uses other then “grammatico-historical” hermeneutics, the resultant conclusions
    will bound to be wrong, another words: heretic. It is like feeding false information into
    a computer you will obviously get false results out of it.
    It is not for debate its a fact.

    God gave Scriptures to humanity as a “user manual” to teach people, their position
    in relation to their environment, how to relate to fellow humans, what the consequences
    are of particular behaviors and what the future plan of God for his creation. The intended
    audience was/is/will be all humans. Another words: the whole spectrum of human societies.
    Consequently no other but the “commmon-sense-hermeneutics” another word “historico-grammatical”
    hermeneutics is the only valid method to understand the will of God.
    As result, using the principle of exclusion, No amount of pseudo-intellectual talk can
    justify the allegorical hermeneutic that is used by covenant theologians to interpret the Bible.
    It is well known that the early church held the premillennial view and the separation of
    Israel and church regarding eschatology, because they applied the “commmon-sense-hermeneutics”.
    Numerous early church-fathers’s written evidence testify to this.
    This was of course the view of the apostles as well. Consequently all other views are
    heretic: amillennial, postmillennial, preterist and any of their shades.

    As is well known that by the time and at the Nicean gathering the politically-correct
    “forefathers” sterilized christianity of its jewish origin and then as a natural
    consequence formed strong anti-semitic theologies which later came to be
    called Covenant theology. Covenant theology (aka:replacement theology)
    is steming from these early trends. Hence we have institutionalized anti-semitism in
    catholicism and all protestant, reformed (Luther, Calvin) churches. The historic result
    can be seen right throu the ages up to our own time culminating in the holocaust.
    From these historical facts it is obvious that any shades of covenant theology (preterism,
    postmillennialism, amillenialism, historic premillenialism) are heretic because they
    deliberately falsify the teachings of the Bible. One of the tools to falsify the Bible
    is hermeneutics.
    The hermeneutics covenantals applies hence is unscientific since the misunderstood
    theology from NT is forced on the OT. Another words: the NT read back into the OT.
    They just tie the cart in front of the horse:)
    No amount of thinkering (research, etc) with covenant theology will fix its fatal
    foundational flaws let alone show any progress since the Nicean fathers. The resultant
    theology, therefore, can not be anything else but Heretic.
    For covenant theologians the newly reestablished Israel (1948 march 14) is of course quite
    an enbarrassment for them, because they replaced jews with the church. Consequently they think
    that Israel is morally, theologicaly “unsupportable”. So they marginalize its existence in
    relation to the Bible – God’s program.
    Therefore anti-semitism for them (for reasonably consistent covenantalists) is a normal attitude
    even today.
    On the otherhand the existence of the state of Israel is one of the greatest supporting
    argument for any shades of futurist, dispensational theology. History (the past 4000
    years but especially the last 2000 years) unmistakenly shows that.
    Even the deuterocanonical book of Ben Sira (or Ecclesiasticus) 48:10-12 explicitly says
    that before the end of the world the tribes of Jacob will be reestablished. This book was
    written about 2200 years ago.
    Covenant theology in any shape or form is Heretic regardless of who and how they arguing.
    Considering the future I excpect the decline of biblical morality and proper theology
    such as dispensational theology, because satan going to gain, more ground in
    societies. So people will not tolerate (accept only pc opinions, smooth talk) proper, sound,
    conservative doctrines, values. It has been written, predicted (Daniel 12:4; Amos 8:11-12 2 Timothy 4:2-5).
    The decline of conservative values is probably inversely proportional to the ground
    gained by satan.
    Its a sad fact that “replacement theologians” seems to inoculate themselves against reason.

    further reading:
    History of the Jews by Paul Johnson ISBN-10: 0060915331
    Future Israel by Barry E.Horner ISBN-10: 0805446273
    Israelology: The Missing Link by A.Fruchtenbaum ISBN-10: 0914863053
    Footsteps of the Messiah by A.Fruchtenbaum ISBN-10: 0914863096
    Basic Theology by Charles Ryrie ISBN-10: 0802427340
    Systematic Theology by Norman Geisler ISBN-10: 0764206036
    Things to Come by Dwight Pentecost ISBN-10: 0310308909
    The Moody Handbook of Theology by Paul Enns ISBN-10: 0802434347
    Understanding End Times Prophecy by Paul Benware ISBN-10: 0802490794
    Dispensationalism by Charles Ryrie ISBN-10: 080242189X
    The Millennial Kingdom by John Walvoord ISBN-10: 0310340918
    There Really Is a Difference by Renald Showers ISBN-10: 0915540509

  3. Zolly, it’s far easier for you to mount an ideological attack against a ‘Covenant-Replacement-Ant-Semitic Theology’ (which was never presented), than to engage the scriptures which have choked the life out of your Dispensational Golem.:-)

    Further reading: “…and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan (Revelation 2:9; cf. Romans 2:28,29).

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