“For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.” Romans 11:25.
Editor’s Note: It is a sincere pleasure to welcome another regular correspondent. Mr. MacDormand is a graduate of the University of Alberta and has been engaged in the oil industry for many years. His deep understanding of the Israel Truth is due in part to his being a third generation believer and a son of a former contributing writer to The Prophetic Expositor. He has a great interest in what is going to happen spiritually to our people as the end of the age draws closer.
This scripture was given by the apostle Paul to the Christians at Rome to explain the rapid increase in conversions in the Gentile world while the Jewish people were rejecting the Messiah. The reason they rejected Him was the influence of Esau in their midst. The historian Josephus recorded how the Idumeans, who were descended from Esau, became Jews. Herod was an Idumean. Paul used the illustration of an olive tree, as symbolic of the house of Judah, to show how Jewish people were cut off from the tree of God’s planting and Gentiles were grafted in.
“And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;
Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.” Romans 11:17, 18.
However, there were two olive trees planted by the Lord. “And two olive trees by it, one upon the right side of the bowl, and the other upon the left side thereof.” Zechariah 4:3.
“These are the two olive trees, and the two candlesticks standing before the God of the earth.” Revelation 11:4.
The second olive tree is the house of Israel which is chiefly the Anglo-Saxon and kindred people. Today the branches are being broken off the second olive tree and the wild branches of the Gentiles are being grafted in. Conversions in the Gentile world are mushrooming.
In Africa in the last century the number of Christians has gone from about 10 million to between 320 and 360 million. In China the Christians have increased from about 5 million to perhaps 100 million in the last 35 years. Christianity is exploding in China, Taiwan, and Singapore. Soon, Pentecostal Christians alone will outnumber all Buddhists in the world. South Korea is now 25% Christian and will soon surpass the United States in sending missionaries into Asia. Even in Japan the number of Christians has doubled in the last 15 years. Asia is heading toward having the most Christians of any continent in the world. In Latin America there is a Protestant sweep happening. Latin America is now 15 % evangelical Christians. Brazil, the largest country, is now 20% evangelical Christians and the percentage is growing fast. Catholic bishops estimate 8000 people a day in Latin America convert from the Catholic Church to evangelical Christianity. Even Canada is now experiencing an annual growth in the number of Christians, not from the Anglo-Saxon or French population, but from the immigrant population. There is an increase in the world’s Christian population every day of more than 30,000 people. This is despite the falling away happening in Western Europe and the Anglo Saxon countries.
There is a misconception that Islam is the largest religion in the world and the fastest growing. This is not true. Christianity is by far the largest and the fastest growing with over 2 billion adherents and projections of 3 billion within 45 years, if the Lord tarries, but we believe He will not.
It appears the fulness of the Gentiles is coming in. Let us not be blind to what the Holy Spirit is doing. He is preparing this planet for the coming reign of the King of Kings. It looks bleak right now for the House of Israel, but the best times are still ahead for us. “And so all Israel shall be saved; as it is written, ‘There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.’” Romans 11:26, 27.
This does not mean all of our people will be born again, but rather that we will be saved from our oppressors. The tares will be removed from the kingdom by the holy angels (Matthew 13:41), and Satan and his evil angels will be locked up for a thousand years (Revelation 3:2, 3). Universal peace will occur and our people will become examples to the world in our obedience to God.
“He shall cause them that come of Jacob to take root; Israel shall blossom and bud, and fill the face of the world with fruit.” Isaiah 27:6.
Certainly all of this is cause to give praise to God and look toward the kingdom age. God is still in control and will accomplish His purpose despite the many sins in our society that vex us. They vex Him too. (Statistics for this article were from the book “The New Faces of Christianity; Believing the Bible in the Global South” by Philip Jenkins, the article “Latin America: Evangelical Christianity Moves The Masses” by freelance writer Jose Orozco; also reports from Asia Times Online, The Christian Century Foundation, Inter Varsity Christian Fellowship, and Encarta Encyclopedia.)