From the earliest time…

From the earliest time, God called Israel to be the focal point of His mediation, as a light to the Gentiles. Pay heed to Me, My people, listen My nation, instruction will shine forth from Me  and My judgement will be a light for all peoples. Isaiah 51:4

As 1 Corinthians 10:4 and John 1:3 shows, it was Jesus Christ, even in the Old Testament period, who shone His light through Israel to the nations. However, when Israel turned away from God, Jesus stepped out of eternity to continue His divinely ordained role of a light to the world:  As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world.  John 9:5

Upon His departure, Jesus conferred His presence upon the disciples, John 20:22, and they (and subsequently we) became the Israel which Christ utilizes to mediate His glory to the Gentiles.Mathew 5:14-16 You are the light of the world. Blessed are you, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake.

Acts 13:47 For so has the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set you to be a light for  the Gentiles, that you should be for salvation unto the ends of the earth. And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed.  Paul confirmed that Christian believers are the light of the world, shining through our temples (our bodies), and this fulfilling Isaiah’s prophecy which says that the body of Christ is to be viewed as born again Israel, shining His light to the Gentiles. Isaiah 42:6, Isaiah 49:8

Many want to see the “Church” as another chosen body, which came into existence when the Jews rejected Christ. Some say that “Church” replacedIsrael, while others, cognizant of the many Old Testament prophecies which promise the Lord  will yet choose Israel, Isaiah 14:1, see a future regathering of ethnic Jews into salvation in Christ. However, salvation occurred in the Spirit of the Lord at the cross – and it obviously began in the first century. Many Jews did receive salvation then and have since. But to make two people, two promises out of it all, is quite wrong and only done in order to support the belief of a rapture, thereby making a further error.

Those true Christian believers who genuinely respond to the Gospel have become Spiritual Israel and the Messianic Jews are the remnantspoken of in Romans:

Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. And if that salvation is by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. What then? Old Covenant Israel did not obtain that which they sought; but the election [born again Christians] has obtained it.  Romans 11:5

 Prophecy warns believers that a high proportion of the established Church, has become apostate and a type of Babylon, that parallels the Old Testament body of fallen Israel. As such, people are now commanded to come out of her, as her judgment draws near. Revelation 18:1-24

Although many prophets regularly cite the come out of her statement in Revelation 18:4, few connect it to Christ’s imperative that we are to come unto Him in a direct, and personal way.                                                                 Ref: James Lloyd