NOTE: The following is a long conversation from a Facebook post between a two people in a bible fulfilled prophecy group. One is an expert in Covenant IO, the other a curious person wishing to learn more. We at God's Word First do not support Covenant IO. However we share this for reference in your continuing education on various eschatological view points. Names of participants are withheld for privacy.
Salvation for the disciples meant [Israelites] being rescued from sin, the curse of the law (which only Israel had and was under), their enemies, their perverse generation and the wrath of God. All of that was fulfilled in the first century. Jesus put an end to sin and the law that imputed sin passed away. God hasn’t saved any modern day Christian from their enemies and the wrath of God was the AD70 judgment on unrepentant Jews. There is nothing left for anyone to be saved from today.
According to Heb 9:15, redemption was for sin done under the first covenant. That means Jesus didn’t die for anyone today. He died for his people, Israel.
QUESTION: Do IO believers accept the writings of Paul in the New Testament?
ANSWER: IO is based on all of what Christians believe to be scripture. That would include the writings of Paul, which incidentally were letters to descendants of the tribes of Israel who had been dispersed among the nations.
QUESTION: But doesn't Paul say he's preaching to gentiles as well? And then there's Peter who had a vision where God said gentiles are clean so go preach to them.
ANSWER: Gentiles (ethnos / nations) who were saved, adopted, grafted in, co-heirs etc. were descendants of the tribes of Israel who had been dispersed among the nations. They were called “nations” (ethnos) by Jews because they had stopped being Torah observant, had stopped practicing circumcision and were considered entirely different nations on account of their adoption of pagan practices. Nobody today is a gentile in this sense.
The word “gentile” is not a direct translation from Greek and doesn’t belong in the bible at all. It’s from a Latin term, gentilis, which means “belonging to a clan or tribe”. Entire nations of non-Israelites were not in view.
Peter’s vision didn’t pertain to anyone today. The unclean animals on the sheet represented covenant people of Yahweh who were considered unclean by Jews like Peter, Paul and Jesus. They were Israelites who were alienated from the covenant on account of their adoption of idolatry while out in the nations.
Jews discriminated against these apostatized Israelites and considered them an entirely different nation. We see Jesus teaching about the Jew’s response to these Israelites returning to the fold in the parable of the prodigal son. The prodigal represented the northern kingdom of Israel, and the faithful son represented the southern kingdom of Judah.
Jesus’ ministry extended primarily to those of the southern kingdom, while the ministry of the apostles was to both Jews and gentile descendants of the tribes of Israel who were dispersed among the nations. The vision was to teach Peter to accept Israelites who were out in the nations who were of faith [in Christ], that they were acceptable to God. It’s got nothing to do with anyone today.
In the first century, the fullness (complete number)’of gentiles came in and in that way, all Israel [of faith in Christ] was saved, just as Paul predicted in Rom 12:25-26. There are no more Jews or gentiles who need to come in to the kingdom. Israel’s redemptive narrative came to an end in AD70. It was their story. We weren’t part of it. Reading oneself into portions of someone else’s two thousand year old mail penned by and for Israelites won’t change that one bit. Life goes on.
QUESTION: Hmmm interesting perspective. So does that mean the Greeks and Romans that Peter and Paul preached to were direct descendants of Israel?
ANSWER: Paul preached everywhere to everyone, to call out the descendants of the tribes of Israel from the nations. Some of them were Greeks (hellenized Israelites) and Roman citizens.
The scriptures repeatedly make the prediction that the descendants of Israel would be scattered throughout the nations :"(e.g. Deut 4:27, 28; 30:1; Jer 30:11; Dan 9:7; Micah 5:7, 8 ) and that in the last days they would be regathered, leaving none behind :"(e.g. Isa 11:11,12; Jer 16:14,15; 23:3-8; 31:10; Ezek 11:17-19; 39:28; Zeph 3:20).
Dan 9:7 To you, O Lord, belongs righteousness, but to us open shame, as at this day, to the men of Judah, to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to all Israel, those who are near and those who are far away, in all the lands to which you have driven them, because of the treachery that they have committed against you.
We see them being gathered in the first century, all twelve tribes of them. First, by the ministry of Jesus...
Mat 3:12 His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”
Mat 13:30 Let both grow together until the harvest, and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, “Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.”’”
Joh 11:51 He did not say this of his own accord, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation,
Joh 11:52 and not for the nation only, but also to gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad.
And later though the apostles....
Mat 24:31 And he will send out his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.
2Th 2:1 And we ask you, brethren, in regard to the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ, and of our gathering together unto him,
The results of the gathering....
Jas 1:1 James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, To the twelve tribes in the Dispersion: Greetings.
1Pe 1:1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who are elect exiles of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,
Rev 7:4 And I heard the number of the sealed, 144,000, sealed from every tribe of the sons of Israel:
Rev 7:9 After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands,
According to Paul, writing in the late 50s to mid 60s, the gospel had already gone out to the nations, the whole world and to every creature (Rom 10:18, 16:26, Col 1:6, 23). It went out to the nations because that’s where the descendants of the tribes of Israel had been dispersed to.
All that was left was the end to come, which Jesus said would happen in their generation and which John said would “soon take place”. The time (their generation) and people meant for the gospel (those under the law, Jews and gentile descendants of the tribes of Israel) came to an end, in AD70.
If you’d like more information about the view I’m showing you... It’s called Covenant IO (Israel Only). Covenant IO is an interpretive paradigm that shows the entire bible’s redemptive narrative pertains only to old covenant Israel in her last days, people who were under the law. It is as consistent with audience relevance when it comes to salvation and redemption as it is with eschatology.
Covenant IO returns biblical words and phrases to their original Israelite interpretive paradigm, showing that in many cases words like “world” (kosmos) referred to the covenant world of Israel (not the entire planet )and that “gentiles” (ethnos) who were saved were descendants of the tribes of Israel.
Covenant IO also defends the view that Israel’s redemptive narrative ended in AD70, along with the need for the gospel. It is a view that is scriptural, adheres faithfully to audience relevance and has consideration for the exclusively Hebrew cultural and religious milieu the scriptures came from.
Covenant IO shows from the scriptures that salvation and redemption were only for old covenant Israel, which means nobody today is saved and redeemed, nor has anyone needed salvation and redemption since the first century. Covenant IO essentially destroys the premises upon which the post-AD70 version of Christianity relies on.
To disprove Covenant IO, one would have to show from the scriptures that non-Israelites had and were under the law, were imputed with sin, were judged at the end of the age, that non-Israelites were judged or saved from what Israel was judged or saved from, and that that the need for the gospel was expected to extend past that end of the age. To date, no one has been able to do this.
IO offers people the opportunity to understand why they were never sinners and why Jesus never needed to save them. This is good news! It can also save people money every Sunday. IO tends to be a great relief for people who have suffered mental and emotional anguish under the false premises of post-AD70 Christianity’s contrived narrative and all the religious nonsense that comes with it.
For more information on Covenant IO, visit the FB group called “The Preterist Collective” or visit the YouTube channel called “Israel Only Information” for many informative presentations on this exciting and controversial view.
QUESTION: Do you believe that the Jewish religion along with the Old Testament is also a contrived narrative full of religious nonsense?
ANSWER: Yes, pretty much. The bible is a collection of texts penned by and for Israelites. From start to finish is Israel’s redemptive narrative, not ours.
For example, Adam being created from literal dirt, Eve created from one of Adam’s ribs and a talking snake weren’t real. They are the product of a high context culture that used symbolic terms in a recapitulated narrative describing Israel’s history of entering the promised land, their failure and subsequent expulsion and eventual Babylonian captivity.
Other things are pure nonsense. For example...Moses staff turning into a snake and back into a staff again...a burning bush that talks... a talking donkey...Joshua making the sun stand still... a woman being turned into a block of salt... three Jews thrown into a furnace and come back out unharmed...pure religious mythology.
QUESTION: Several years ago I first encountered posts by IO proponents. At that time they were saying not only that no one after AD70 receives salvation, but that no one before the creation of Israel received salvation. They noted the first occurrence of the name Israel is in Gen. 32:28, thus prior to that no one was saved. Do you (or other IO proponents here) still hold to that? Or do you think salvation was available from Adam and Eve UNTIL AD70?
ANSWER: I cannot speak for first generation IOers from years ago (Rivers Of Eden/ aka Chris Camillo, Corey Schultz), who hold to a literalist interpretation of Genesis and still believe the god of Israel actually exists. The second generation of IO is growing and changing as new information becomes available about ancient near eastern culture and how Israelites thought and interpreted their world. It is now called Covenant IO, since the bible’s redemptive narrative involves only covenant people.
Pre-Adamic people weren’t part of Israel’s redemptive narrative just like people today aren’t part of Israel’s redemptive narrative. People outside of a context of Adam (who was a personification of Israel) weren’t under the law, weren’t imputed with sin and didn’t need salvation. Sin, judgment, grace, salvation, redemption, etc etc were concepts in the bible that only concerned covenant people. The salvation of gentiles (HEB goy) was the same salvation of gentiles in the New Testament- salvation of descendants of the tribes of Israel who had been dispersed among the nations. In the Old Testament, salvation was a return to obedience to and fellowship with Yahweh, evidenced by a return to the land after captivity. There was nothing pagan people needed salvation from, except Israelites attempts to exterminate them.
Salvation for the New Testament era disciples meant [Israelites] being rescued from sin, the curse of the law (which only Israel had and was under), their enemies, their perverse generation and the wrath of God. All of that was fulfilled in the first century. Jesus put an end to sin and the law that imputed sin passed away. God hasn’t saved any modern day Christian from their enemies and the wrath of God was the AD70 judgment on unrepentant Jews. There is nothing left for anyone to be saved from today.
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