Remarriage and Regathering
The solution to Israel’s divorce from God is for her to remarry Him in the person of Jesus Christ. This is the background that one must know to understand the “marriage supper of the Lamb” in Revelation 19:7. Each one of us must apply this in a personal way, but there is an appointed time in history where Jesus Christ will marry His corporate Bride. The corporate Bride is the sum total of all the individuals who have been married to Him throughout history.
Some do not believe in a corporate Bride or that Christ will marry that body of people at a future time. Their understanding is limited to the personal, individual level. Others see only the corporate fulfillment and do not understand the personal application. We need to understand both levels to know the full plan of God not only for us as individuals but also for the world as a whole.
On the personal level, there are three steps toward coming into this marriage bond with Jesus Christ. The first step is to be justified by faith in the blood of the Lamb—that is, to experience the Feast of Passover. The second step is to be filled with the Spirit—that is, to experience the Feast of Pentecost. These steps cannot be bypassed if one wants to experience that final feast of Israel, the Feast of Tabernacles, or Booths.
Passover and Pentecost were both fulfilled in 33 A.D. Jesus became the Passover Lamb when He died on the cross while everyone was killing the lambs for Passover that year. After His resurrection, He ascended and then returned at the Feast of Pentecost (Acts 2:1) to fulfill that feast. This concluded the work of His first coming—the work that He had to do as the Messiah-King of Judah.
The autumn feasts (Trumpets, Atonement, and Tabernacles) are fulfilled in the events surrounding the second coming of Christ, when He comes as the heir of Joseph’s birthright. This is the time of the “marriage” that the book of Revelation describes.
The fulfillment of Pentecost in 33 A.D. allowed us as individuals to come into a marital relationship with Jesus Christ. However, because of our spiritual immaturity and imperfections, our relationship with Jesus Christ is not instantly perfect the moment we are justified by faith—or even when we experience Pentecost. We still have much growing to do. Hence, this marriage bond is not what it will be.
The Bible speaks of two types of marriages and two kinds of brides. One is perfect, the other is imperfect. Both are legally perfected by the blood of Jesus Christ, who calls things that are not as though they were (Rom. 4:17). Jesus loves even His imperfect Bride, but He is not content with leaving her in that condition, always having to call what is NOT as though it were. Hence, there are two brides, and they are illustrated by Hagar and Sarah. There are two types of marriage covenant, called the old and new covenants.
Pentecost itself began at Mount Sinai on the day God married the House of Israel. Pentecost is therefore a commemoration of the Old Covenant. It is the kind of marriage covenant that is conditional, having “if” clauses (Ex. 19:5). The Old Covenant permitted divorce. It had to, simply because marriages between imperfect people do not always work the way they should. As we have already seen, God divorced the House of Israel. This was not only permissible (Deut. 24:1), but it was also necessary in order to institute a New Covenant with a perfected Bride—a marriage that would never end, because both Husband and Bride were perfect and always in total agreement.
And so the Church that God “married” at Pentecost in Acts 2 is also an imperfect Church. This is self-evident, because it is made up of imperfect Christian individuals. In this stage of development, the Church is another Hagar. While it professes to be under the New Covenant, it is in actual practice an Old Covenant relationship. It can be no other, because it was instituted under Pentecost, not Tabernacles. In fact, the purpose of Pentecost is to learn how to be led by the Holy Spirit—in other words, to learn obedience until we come into full agreement with Him. Then obedience gives way to agreement.
When a marriage is rooted in full agreement in all things, where both parties speak with one voice and have one mind, there will be no need to teach each other to “know the Lord,” for “all will know Me” (Heb. 8:11). Jesus will not have to command His Bride to do anything, for she will be one with her Husband and will do all things as He would do, and speak all things as He would speak. This is the nature of the New Covenant. This is the marriage of the new Mount Sion (Heb. 12:22) under the Feast of Tabernacles in the New Jerusalem. This is Sarah. This marriage produces the promised Seed, which is Christ manifesting in you.
I have given a full account of these two marriage covenants in my book, Old and New Covenant Marriage, so this much is sufficient for our current study.
The Corporate Bride is Israel
When John was shown “the Bride, the wife of the Lamb” (Rev. 21:9), he saw a city whose gates were the names of the twelve tribes of Israel (Rev. 21:12). It is not a city with a single gate named “Judah,” nor was it a city with three names on its gates: Judah, Benjamin, and Levi. The city was meant to portray all the tribes in a unified nation, the United House of Israel.
Furthermore, verse 27 indicates that this city includes only believers in Jesus Christ,
27 and nothing unclean and no one who practices abomination and lying shall ever come into it, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
If we apply this to the theme of the great remarriage between Jesus Christ and Israel prophesied in Hosea and other places, we see that the regathering of Israel into God’s house comes after the marriage itself. The remarriage is legally necessary before God ends Israel’s dispersion and brings her back into His house.
This is not to say that the Bride is composed exclusively of natural Israelites, as some have claimed. Israel’s pedigree was not a factor when Jesus Christ divorced her in 721 B.C., nor will it be a factor in her salvation. Neither does this exclusive marriage with Israel as a nation exclude those who are not natural Israelites. Isaiah 56 prophesies,
6 Also the foreigners who join themselves to the Lord, to minister to Him, and to love the name of the Lord, to be His servants, every one who keeps from profaning the Sabbath, and holds fast My covenant; 7 Even those I will bring to My holy mountain, and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be acceptable on My altar; for My house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples. 8 The Lord God, who gathers the dispersed of Israel, declares, “Yet others I will gather to them, to those already gathered.”
Isaiah was referring to Solomon’s prayer at the dedication of the temple. In 1 Kings 8:41-43 he prayed,
41 Also concerning the foreigner who is not of Thy people Israel, when he comes from a far country for Thy name’s sake 42 (for they will hear of Thy great name and Thy mighty hand, and of Thine outstretched arm); when he comes and prays toward this house, 43 hear Thou in heaven Thy dwelling place, and do according to all which the foreigner calls to Thee, in order that all the peoples of the earth may know Thy name, to fear Thee, as do Thy people Israel, and that they may know that this house which I have built is called by Thy name.
And so it is evident that although Israel was a chosen vessel to bring the Gospel and the knowledge of God to the rest of the world, they were not the only ones to be saved. In fact, their job was to bring the Good News of Salvation to the rest of the world, so that all nations might receive the blessings of Abraham. In that way the promise to Abraham could be fulfilled, saying, “in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Gen. 12:3; Acts 3:25).
Thus, Israel as a nation is composed of people of all races and nationalities who have transferred their citizenship to the Kingdom of God. To be specific, every Christian believer by definition is a “Jew,” and every true “Jew” who continues on into full Sonship is an Israelite. Keep in mind that there are no more natural Israelites in the world. There are only ex-Israelites of the dispersion. Many people today have ancestors that used to be Israelites, but that does not make them Israelites in the sight of God today. Their Israelite status ended with the great divorce. The only way to regain such a title is through coming into Sonship, which is attaining the Birthright of Joseph. This is done in the same way, equally and impartially, regardless of a person’s genealogical heritage.
To become part of the Bride of Christ, one must become an Israelite. God will only marry a nation composed of Israelite citizens. Yet citizenship is a legal issue, not a genealogical issue. Citizenship is open to all people, but they must become citizens of Israel to be married to Him. Hence, the Bride is exclusive nationally speaking, but inclusive of all individuals who meet the legal requirements of citizenship.
The United Kingdom of Israel
The prophets speak of the regathering of both Israel and Judah together to show that the great breach between these two nations has been repaired. The Divided Kingdom must be reunited before the marriage and regathering can take place. Jesus came first to set up the Judah phase of the Kingdom. His disciples became true “Jews.” The second coming of Christ is required to set up the Joseph (Israel) phase of the Kingdom. Those true Jews who also become true Israelites are the citizens forming the United Kingdom of Israel. These are the ones who receive Christ as both the King of Judah and the King of Israel. They accept Him by faith as their Passover Lamb as well as their pattern of the Manifested Son. This is the only path to citizenship in Israel, and it requires a person to become an overcomer and thus fulfill the Feast of Tabernacles.
Once a person has become a legal citizen of Judah, then he may continue on to become a citizen of the United House of Israel. This is a greater Kingdom. In fact, it is no other than the Kingdom of God itself. But to become an Israelite one must be joined to Joseph, the birthright holder. In Christ’s second coming, He comes as the Heir to the birthright of Joseph. Therefore, one must believe that the true inheritor of Joseph is Jesus Christ and the overcomers (the Joseph company). These are the chosen ones who will rule with Him for a thousand years (Rev. 20:6).
Joseph speaks of Sonship. Jesus was the first of the manifested sons of God. He was the pattern, the firstborn from the dead (Col. 1:18). Those who go beyond Passover and Pentecost into the experience of the Feast of Tabernacles are the overcomers who will become the manifested sons of God described in Romans 8:19-21. The way is open to every believer, but not every believer is an overcomer. One can accept Christ as his Passover without accepting Him as his Tabernacles.
The manifested sons of God are those who not only have accepted Jesus Christ, but they have also come into the maturity of Sonship. Paul describes this in Galatians 4:1-7 and other writings as the huiothesia, the “placement of Sons.” He says that as long as we are yet immature children, we are no different from slaves or servants, even if we are heirs of all things. A baby is born into a family and is an heir of his father’s house; but he is not placed as a Son until he reaches maturity.
So also it is with this matter of Sonship. A baby Christian can be an heir of all things, but he is only placed in the legal position of a Son when he reaches maturity. Only then does he exercise the full authority of the Father. To reach such a place of maturity requires going through the developmental steps laid down in Israel’s feast days: Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles. One must be justified, sanctified, and then glorified. One must be fully saved in spirit, soul, and body.
When a person meets these requirements, then and only then can it be said that he is an Israelite indeed. It took Jacob 98 years to reach that point in his life when he became an Israelite. It ought not to take that long for us today, for we may learn from his mistakes by studying his life in the Scripture. Even so, we must see the difference between being a true Jew and being a true Israelite.
Hosea 1:11 says,
11 And the sons of Judah and the sons of Israel will be gathered together, and they will appoint for themselves one Leader, and they will go up from the land, for great will be the day of Jezreel.
The Leader that Judah and Israel will appoint is Jesus Christ. He is the rightful Heir to the throne of Judah and to the Kingdom (birthright) of Joseph-Israel. The verse above does NOT say that this Leader will appoint Himself as King over Judah and Israel. It says that “they” will appoint Him to be their Leader. This is important in view of the fact that His leadership has been disputed. When Jesus came as the Heir to the throne of David, the chief priests disputed His claim. They did NOT appoint Him as their Leader. They wanted someone more willing to use military force to overthrow the Romans. He did not fit their idea of the Messiah.
And so, they killed the Heir in order to seize His inheritance (Matt. 21:38). In other words, they disputed His right to be the Leader, or King of Judah. But those who DID accept Him were the true Jews, and in the eyes of God they remained as true citizens of Judah. The rest were cut off, according to the law, but their ranks were filled by people of other nations who gladly accepted Jesus Christ as their King. Together, they formed the Kingdom of God—though this Kingdom was still in an early stage of development.
It was essentially a JudahKingdom. It became known as “the Church,” but it was Judah in the eyes of God. It would require a second coming of Christ to usher in the full Kingdom of Israel. Even as King David himself was first king of Judah before becoming king of Israel, so also is it with Jesus Christ. The Church has proclaimed Him King of Judah during the past 2,000 years, but now in His second appearance He is going to be proclaimed King of Israel—the United Kingdom of Israel.
Yet once again, His right to the Birthright of Joseph is being disputed by the Zionists and by many Christian Zionists who support them. The Zionist state of “Israel” by its very nature claims to be the Kingdom of God, or the beginning of it. If that were true, then Christians would have to join the religion of Judaism in order to become part of the Bride of Christ. Yet Judaism requires men to reject Jesus as the Christ. The only way a Christian can become a Jew is if he deceives the rabbis into thinking that he rejects Jesus Christ. Such lies are not a Christian virtue.
To support Zionism today is the equivalent of playing the role of Judas. Judas was Jesus’ disciple who thought he could force Jesus to use His power to declare Himself the Messiah. So he betrayed Jesus into the hands of the chief priests. Judas was wrong. Likewise, today, Christian Zionists are betraying Jesus Christ once again in the matter of the Birthright of Joseph. They are desperately trying to help God fulfill prophecies in order to force His return. It is as if they want the Israeli state to stir up such hatred among the Arabs that they threaten to destroy the Zionists. The Christians seem to want to bring about “Armageddon” in order to force Jesus to come and save the Zionists from utter destruction. This was Judas’ method. What will they do when their plan backfires? Judas hanged himself.
Here, then, is the great irony. The Christians seem to love the Zionists, but actually, they are urging them to their doom and often paying their way into the destruction that will certainly come upon the old Jerusalem. On the other hand, I see this destruction coming, and have published these things to warn Jews not to immigrate to “Israel,” where they would be in great danger. For my trouble, I am called “anti-semitic” and stand accused of hating Jews! What an irony! If I really hated Jews, I would donate money so that more of them could immigrate to Tel Aviv. Then when Jeremiah 19:11 is fulfilled, and God destroys Jerusalem, I would be able to rejoice that I was responsible for a few more Jewish families being killed.
But no, I would never assist a Jew to go into such danger. I hate no one. My opposition to Zionism is based upon my understanding of Scripture. I do not want to become a modern Judas, whose office was given to another (Acts 1:20). It is my desire that all men be saved and that all come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ. Yet because the Scripture prophesies the casting out of the bondwoman (Hagar, the old Jerusalem), I must point to the way men may escape the judgment to come.
The way to become part of the Sarah-Bride company that Jesus will marry by means of a New Covenant is this: Accept Jesus as King of Judah, and then go on into birthright of the placement of sons. In this way, you will appoint Christ as the Leader of both Judah and Israel, and you will become a citizen of the United Kingdom of Israel.
The Repairer of the Breach
Jesus Christ is the great repairer of the breach mentioned in Isaiah 58:12,
12 And those from you will rebuild the ancient ruins; you will raise up the age-old foundations; and you will be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of the streets in which to dwell.
The two comings of Christ repair the breach between Judah and Israel. In coming from the tribe of Judah, He qualified to be its King—the holder of the Dominion Mandate. But in His second coming, He comes to claim the birthright, and hence, He comes as Joseph—the man whose robe was dipped in blood (Gen. 37:31; Rev. 19:13).
In my book, The Laws of the Second Coming, I showed how Christ fulfills the law of the two doves in Leviticus 14 that were needed to cleanse lepers (mortals). The first dove was killed in an earthen vessel, and so Christ had to come to be killed in a mortal body made of the dust of the ground. The second dove was to be dipped in the blood of the first dove and released into the open field (Lev. 14:7). This prophesied of the second coming of Christ, as He is released into the world with His robe dipped in blood. Matt. 13:38 tells us, “the field is the world.” Thus, the law prophesies of two comings of Christ.
In coming the second time as Joseph’s Heir, He unites both the scepter and the birthright in one Head, under one Leader, as Hosea 1:11 says. In this great remarriage of the United House of Israel, He will marry a mature wife, one who is in agreement with Him, one who understands Him and is like Him. He will not be unequally yoked with a wife like Hagar, the bond woman, but will be yoked with a Sarah Bride that is free. He will not be yoked again to Hagar—the old Jerusalem—nor to its children, the Ishmael company. He will be yoked only to Sarah—the New Jerusalem—and to her children, the Isaac company.
And so, the Bride of Christ in His second coming is a mature Sarah Bride made up of mature Christian believers who inherit the Kingdom, the Birthright of Joseph, as true Israelites.
Nathanael, the True Israelite
Jesus talked to Nathanael in John 1:47, 48,
47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to Him, and said of him, Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile [dolos, “deceit”]!
Jesus recognized that Nathanael was not like deceitful Jacob, but was like the man, Israel, after he had wrestled with the angel. Why did Jesus call Nathanael an Israelite indeed? Were not the other disciples Israelites from Galilee, the home of Benjamin?
48 Nathanael said to Him, “How do You know me?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.”
No man can become an Israelite until he first comes under the fig tree of Judah. Becoming a true “Jew” is a pre-requisite to becoming an Israelite indeed. One must first accept Jesus in His Judah work before one can accept Him in His capacity as Joseph.
49 Nathanael answered Him, “Rabbi, You are the Son of God; You are the King of Israel.”
When Jesus was on the Cross, the sign above His head proclaimed Him to be the King of the Jews, that is, the King of Judea. But Nathanael proclaims Jesus to be “the King of Israel.” Yes, there is a difference. Solomon’s son was a mere King of Judah. David and Solomon were both kings of Israel—the United Kingdom of all the tribes.
In this passage in John (above), Nathanael is a type of mature Son who is a pattern for us all, if we aspire to Sonship. Those who are content with their justification by faith in Jesus’ death and resurrection—and see nothing further—are probably not among the overcomers who attain Sonship. But these things are written to challenge our readers with greater things. There is more to the Christian life than just accepting Christ and then waiting for Him to return while we go about living as if there is no further experience with God. Justification is the door-opener to a whole new experience with God, by which we learn to hear and obey His voice, being led by the Spirit daily.
Being an Overcomer
An overcomer is motivated by the voice of God, rather than by responding to men. Since faith comes by hearing the word of God (Rom. 10:17), an overcomer therefore moves by faith, not by sight. Overcomers do not suffer from hardness of heart, for Paul mentioned in Romans 11:7,
7 What then? That which Israel is seeking for, it has not obtained, but those who were chosen obtained it, and the rest were hardened.
Overcomers are those who practice the art of forgiveness. Jesus told a parable in Matthew 18:22-35 to illustrate how those who cannot forgive others will lose their Jubilee and will receive judgment according to their own standard of measure. This does not mean that such people will lose their salvation. It only means that they will be classed as unrighteous servants that must receive “few stripes” or “many stripes” (Luke 12:48) before they are given life.
Overcomers are those who have learned obedience by the things that they suffer in the earth. An obedient heart is the opposite of a lawless nature. Jesus said in Matt. 7:21-23 that many would come in His name saying, “Lord, Lord,” as if to show submission to Him. However, He would say to many of them, “depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness” (anomia, from nomos, “law”).
The overcomers are mature in their ability to love one another. Jesus taught in Luke 14:12-14 that those desiring to inherit the first resurrection ought to have unconditional love. The illustration He used was inviting people to dinner who do not have the means to repay in kind. Such acts will be repaid “at the resurrection of the righteous.” This is not the general resurrection, but the first resurrection, as shown in my book, The Purpose of Resurrection.
Finally, an overcomer is one who is in agreement with God, for this is the basis of a New Covenant marriage relationship. God is looking for an “Amen” people, those who follow the example of Jesus, who said only what He heard His Father say, and did only what He saw His Father do. Jesus was the “true and faithful Witness” (Rev. 3:14). A witness is one who testifies to what he has seen or heard. God is looking for witnesses. No man can be God’s witness without hearing or seeing something.
But more than that, God is developing a Bride that is free, a Sarah Bride of the New Jerusalem. That Bride will be more than obedient. Even Hagar had the potential of being obedient. A Sarah Bride goes beyond obedience to agreement. Everything she does is what her Husband would do. And that is the only kind of Bride that can possess the full authority of her Husband without abusing that authority.
Make that your goal, and be an Israelite indeed.