One of the most frequent comments made by Israel believers in these dark days is “How few we are!” This is often uttered in a spirit of despair. Many contrast our present smallness of numbers with former days when the largest meeting halls and auditoriums throughout the lands of Celto-Anglo-Saxondom could be filled with people eager to hear about their Israel Identity and God’s Great Kingdom Plan. Furthermore, adherents of the Israel Message were to be found in prominent positions in both Church and State.
Our decline to a very small remnant is even harder to bear when we know that the desperate plight of the Israel nations is due to our rejection of the laws and statutes given by God to our forefathers. Faced with the Goliath of evil which stalks our lands, there is a great danger of Israel believers deciding that there is little they can do to effectively change the situation, and so settle back passively to await the Second Coming.
In the first chapter of the book of Isaiah there is a most accurate description of the state of the Israel people in 2009: “The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider. Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the Lord, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone backward. Why should ye be stricken any more? ye will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds and bruises, and putrefying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment. Your country is desolate, your cities are burned with fire: your land, strangers devour it in your presence, and it is desolate, as overthrown by strangers.” (Isaiah 1 vv 3-7).
Despite the hollow optimism of politicians who promise a better tomorrow if only we will vote for them and entrust them with government; despite the platitudes of the Bible despising modernistic clergy and their humanistic allies who have promoted and applauded the breaking down of every good standard in society, no honest person can deny the truth of Isaiah’s words.
The picture emerges therefore of, on the one hand, a sick and corrupt nation and, on the other hand, a comparative handful of Bible loving followers of the Lord Jesus Christ who know who God’s covenant people Israel are. How can this tiny remnant have any impact on the situation? An amazing answer is found in verse 9 of the same chapter: “Except the LORD of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah.” (Isaiah 1 v 9).
In other words, the existence of a very small remnant saves the whole nation from destruction; in the same way as if Abraham could have found 10 righteous persons God would have spared Sodom and Gomorrah from his annihilating judgments. This truth should revitalise every Israel believer! God looks upon us not as man does. To those around us we are an insignificant group of nonentities who hold to a crazy theory. In reality, our very existence is saving the nation from total destruction. We are, by the merciful imputing unto us of Christ’s righteousness in the gift of salvation, a covering that protects our lands from the outpouring of the fullness of the wrath of a righteous God.
Throughout Israel’s long history, God has graciously reserved to Himself a remnant within the land. When Elijah thought that he was the only faithful one left, the Lord said: “Yet I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him.” (1 Kings 19 v 18).
And the Apostle Paul could declare in his day: “Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace.” (Romans 11 v 5).
So it is in 2009. The very small remnant are those of the true Ecclesia, the called out ones within Israel. The Saviour and Redeemer of Israel, the Lord Jesus Christ, no longer walks this earth in human form, but His body – the true Ecclesia – represents Him.
When Christ was on earth he preached the Gospel of the Kingdom. He called men and women to repent of sin and receive the gift of eternal life. He instructed His followers to seek first the Kingdom of God. He taught that the end of the age would come, and He exhorted His hearers to be ready for His return and to pray without ceasing. His message was not popular. Many forsook Him and fled. Ultimately He stood alone in Pilate’s judgment hall.
However, in the end the victory was His when He triumphed over all the powers of Satan, and rose from the grave the all-glorious King of kings and Lord of lords. As He preached, so should we; as He was rejected, so do we experience rejection, but as He ultimately triumphed, so will we.
As we, the remnant, realise our wonderful calling as the salt which is preserving the nation from destruction, we should not be discouraged or rendered impotent by our smallness of numbers or by the lack of response from our fellow Israelites who are still blind to their identity and hardened against the ways of God. Further on in Isaiah chapter 1, the Lord utters tender words to His national people who he still loves despite all their sin: “Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil;…..Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1 vv 16 & 18).
After entreating the nation, the Lord then makes a wonderful promise: “And I will turn my hand upon thee, and purely purge away thy dross, and take away all thy sin: And I will restore thy judges as at the first, and thy counsellors as at the beginning: afterward thou shalt be called, The city of righteousness, the faithful city. Zion shall be redeemed with judgment, and her converts with righteousness.” (Isaiah 1 vv 25-27).
“How few we are!” Let us no longer utter these words in despair, but let them remind us that, as the remnant according to the election of grace in our day and generation, we are Israel’s guarantee of survival. In humility and thankfulness and in never ceasing prayer and witness, let us go forward unto the day when, as Ezekiel promises, the dry dead bones of present-day Israel will be resurrected and filled with the Holy Spirit, to be a mighty army to serve the Lord in the Kingdom Age that is surely coming.
Editor’s Comment: We are delighted that Scotland’s David McLure has favoured The Association of the Covenant People for his very first speaking engagement in Canada. He will be representing the British-Israel Bible Truth Fellowship in Glasgow, Scotland and his powerful messages will add much to our 100th Birthday Conference on August 7th, 8th & 9th. Still, this man is more than a speaker; he has been a missionary for the movement in such places as America, Holland and South Africa, as well as his native land. I say this because from the days of his youth, when he learned the Israel message, he has been active conveying it to others. I am told he is a man who encourages others to be strong in the faith, through his example, as well as his words. The immortal Sir Walter Scott wrote “Sound, sound the clarion, fill the fife!” and while I might be taking the theme of his short four line poem out of context, I believe you will discover at our conference a man who will loudly proclaim the wondrous feeling of knowing our identity.