Saturday, July 31, 2010


I just returned from video-taping 2 45 minute segments on tithing to be aired in Chicago daily for a month soon.

At the bus station I met a 40-ish gentleman whose wife was fanatic about tithing. I gave him a few scriptures and he opened his luggage to pull out a Bible which he always carries. He began looking for Timothy over and over and the FRONT of his Bible and became frustrated that he could not find Timothy.

Friends, this is a man who faithfully attends church regularly and whose wife regularly depletes their money by giving it to the church. If this is the kind of Bible knowledge we find from regular church-attendees, then what horrible kind of manipulation is being done in the name of God among the biblically ignorant?

The slums of Chicago are lined with store-front churches filled with Apostles and Prophets who are soaking the poor for everything they have. The name of God is being blasphemed and changed into a greedy God who only wants to make fat-cat Apostles and Prophets.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Reply to Wisdom2Money.Blog

W2M: In Malachi 3:10, God instructs His people to bring all of the tithe, which in hebrew means the tenth, of all their earnings, firstfruits, or increase into the storehouse (i.e. the church, ministry, to the Lord).
REK: (1) The true HOLY biblical tithe was always only food from inside God’s HOLY land of Israel which He had miraculously increased. Tithes could not come from what man increased, from Gentiles or from outside Israel. (2) Tithes were tenth-fruits after the full harvest could be counted. Tithes were never the same as firstfruits. Firstfruits were very small token offerings. (3) The NT church is never called a storehouse. It did not even have its own legal buildings until after AD325.
W2M: As a result, of acting out of obedience by placing God first by bringing the initial 10% to Him and thus keeping the remaining 90% for their basic necessities of everyday life, that He would in turn “pour out a blessing that they would not have room enough to receive.”
REK: (1) Abram gave his 90% to the King of Sodom and that is not an example of faith for us to follow. (2) First Timothy 5:8 commands Christians to buy basic necessities such as medicine, food and essential shelter first –before church offerings. (3) Gentiles and Christians never were under the law. The Law, including Malachi, was only commanded to Old Covenant Israel which was commaned NOT to share it with Gentiles. (4) The blessings of the Law could only be expected after obedience to all 600+ commands per Deut 27:26 and Gal 3:10.
W2M: “And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes…(Mal 3:11).
REK: This proves that the tithe was still only food from inside Israel over 1000 years later. Jesus removed the curse of the Law in Gal 3:10-13.
W2M: Deuteronomy 8:18; 28:1-2
REK: Try teaching this in the context of ALL of Deu 28-30. It does not apply to the New Covenant.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Reply to Lee Cadenhead by Russell Kelly


Lee: I’ve learned that money answers all things and that what a man does with his money is related to his spirituality and his love for God.

Kelly: Money does not answer all things. Look at our leaders now. They keep throwing money at worthless causes in the dream that we can spend our way out of debt. The poorest church members are often the best workers.

Lee: (1 Cor 16:1-2) Our giving should be through the local church (“to the churches” v. 1). Not television ministries, not parachurch ministries, not ecclesiastical organizations.

Kelly: This passage is only a discussion of emergency funding for famine relief. Paul does not command anybody NOT to support para-church ministries.

Lee: Our giving should be systematic (“let everyone of you lay by him in store” v. 2).

Kelly: Many commentaries say this mean “at home.” The early church was illegal and did not have legal buildings for over 300 years.

Lee: Our giving should be proportionate (“as God hath prospered him” v. 2). If you have more you should give more.

Kelly: Correct. This is in compliance with 2nd Corinthians 8:12-14 and the equality principle.

Lee: The Concept of Tithing
Not a New Testament Command: If you’re an honest dispensationalist then you’ll readily admit that tithing is not an overt New Testament instruction. We’re under grace as opposed to law and as such there’s no compulsion when it comes to giving and that includes a tithe.

Kelly: If you are an honest Bible student you will admit that true biblical HOLY tithes are always only food from inside God’s HOLY land of Israel which God had miraculously increased. Tithes cannot come from what man increased or from outside Israel. Jesus, Peter and Paul did not qualify as tithers. Money was essential for sanctuary worship but was not tithed. NT giving for the Church after Calvary is primarily sacrificial.

Lee: However, tithing is an Old Testament practice that satisfies each one of these New Testament principles, so it is a tool that NT believers should use to discipline themselves to give.

Kelly: This is dishonest. You add the word “overt” in order to re-introduce tithing via the back door. It isn’t but it is. It doesn’t apply but it does. You end up with tithing PLUS. You ignore First Timothy 5:8 and tell church members to give their first tenth to the church instead of buying essential medicine, food and shelter for their families.

Lee: A Great Place to Start: However, tithing is simply a starting for place the New Testament believer. Because we’re not under the Law, the tithe is a lousy place to stop.

Kelly: This is a false premise because it is based on a false assumption that everybody in the Old Covenant was required to BEGIN giving at 10%. This actually only applied to food producers who lived inside Israel. It did not apply to carpenters, fishermen or tentmakers who worked inside Israel and it did not apply to anybody who worked outside Israel on defiled pagan soil.

Lee: If that Old Testament Jew could give ten percent of his livestock and his crops without having his sins taken away by the blood of Christ, without the certainty of heaven, and without the permanent indwelling of the Holy Spirit, than a tithe is the absolute least that we can do.

Kelly: This is poor logic because (1) all Hebrews did not tithe, (2) tithes did not apply to non-food producers and (3) Christians are not food-producers living inside God’s HOLY land of Israel under the Old Covenant. Nobody outside Israel could bring an acceptable tithe.

Lee: I’ve heard tithing described as “the training wheels of giving”.

Kelly: This is Randy Alcorn’s phrase. He repeats similar phrases ad nausea rather than quote non-existent texts.

Lee: Missions (Phil 4:14-19, 2 Cor 8:1-12) Giving to Missions: The Philippians are Supporting a Missionary

Kelly: The above texts have nothing to do with tithing. They are freewill giving texts. Since Old Covenant tithes were never used to support a single missionary to convert Gentiles, then there is no pattern to follow for mission work.

Lee: … It’s only after they’re sent out by the church at Antioch that they’re referred to as apostles (Acts 4:4).

Kelly: As an educated Rabbi under Gamaliel, Paul had been trained NOT to be paid for full time gospel work. The rabbis were self-supported and tithes only went to the Levites and priests. Paul would have considered it sin to accept that which had been given by God only to Levites and priests.

Lee: There’s a special Bible promise for those that give sacrificially to missions and missionaries (Phil 4:19).

Kelly: Yes, but this is a freewill giving principle. Tithes were cold hard Law and must be given regardless of one’s attitude or demeanor.

Lee: (Phil 4:19) I have rarely heard this verse quoted in its context. It is not addresses to rich, selfish Americans in a media-induced recession, it is addressed to people who have given out of their poverty to support the work of the gospel.

Kelly: No. No. No. YOU are quoting it out of context. It is addressed to a church which was unique because it had members who had more disposable income than others. Philippi had a few rich persons who sent money to Paul occasionally because he was poor. Read Philippians 4:15 and 1 Cor 16:17.

Lee: There are enough churches doing little to nothing to support missions that we need to be sure to do all that we can to make up for their lack (Phil 2:30, 4:15).

Kelly: True, but that does not legitimize tithing.

Lee: We take the concept of Faith Promise giving from Second Corinthians chapter eight.

Kelly: This has nothing to do with tithing.

Lee: By faith you make a promise.

Kelly: Israel paid tithes by command enforced by threat of the curse of the Law.

Lee: It’s not complicated. Most people purchase or rent a home or buy a car on the same principle. You agree to pay so much every so often to live in that house or drive that car and you do so by faith.

Kelly: No. You do so because your accountant says you have enough regular income to pay your bills. Otherwise you are irresponsible. You might have faith that you keep your job and stay healthy though.

Lee: The church at Corinth made a promise to give so much to the relief of the saints a year prior to Paul arranging for its collection.

Kelly: This is freewill giving –not tithing.

The dispensational hermeneutic is: That part of the Law which is moral and eternal has been repeated after Calvary for the Church in terms of the New Covenant. Tithing was not repeated.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


From Essay By Russell E Kelly, PHD
Supporting texts with essay

1. NOT NEW COVENANT: New Covenant giving principles are far superior and more inclusive.
2. NOT DEFINED BIBLICALLY: The definition of holy tithes is only food from inside Israel which God had miraculously increased. Tithes could not come from what man increased, from Gentiles or from outside Israel.
3. NOT MONEY: Although money was required for sanctuary worship, money was never a tithe-able item.
4. NOT FROM OUTSIDE ISRAEL: Abram’s tithe was in obedience to the law of the land, was only pagan spoils of war and he gave the 90% to the king of Sodom.
5. NOT UNIVERSAL MINIMUM: In the Old Covenant only food producers inside Israel were required to begin at 10%.
6. NOT FOR PRIESTS: The OT Levitical tithe went to the servants of the priests who equate to ushers, deacons, choir, musicians, etc.
7. NOT FOR PROPERTY OWNERS: Under the Law, those who received the first Levitical tithe were not allowed to own property and were required to kill anybody attempting to enter the sanctuary.
8. NOT HOLY: The tithe was only holy if it came from inside Israel. It was only holy as part of the Old Covenant to support its priesthood.
9. NOT FIRSTFRUITS: The tithe and firstfruits were never the same thing. Tithes were tenth-fruits. Firstfruits were very small token offerings.
10. NOT 10%: There were 3 tithes totaling 23% plus a 10% tithe to the king.
11. NOT FROM THE POOR: The poor did not tithe. They received much of a 2nd festival tithe and all of a 3rd third year poor tithe.
12. NOT FOR WORSHIP ONLY: Levites also worked as political employees of the king in secular affairs.
13. NOT TO THE TEMPLE: The people brought tithes to the Levitical cities. The Temple was too far away to feed 98% of the Levites and priests.
14. NOT FROM MALACHI: Malachi was only for Old Covenant Israel whose priests were guilty of stealing the best tithes they had vowed to God.
15. NOT TAUGHT BY JESUS TO THE CHURCH: Matthew 23:23 is a condemnation of enforcers of the Law as “matters of the law.” It was illegal to teach tithes to Jesus from Jews or Gentiles.
16. NOT FOR NT PRIESTS: The OT priesthood and Temple have been replaced by the priesthood of every believer.
17. NOT NT STOREHOUSE: The OT Temple has not been replaced by the so-called storehouse of the church building. Buildings were not legal for almost 300 years after Calvary.
18. NOT A MORAL LAW: OT tithes were part of the worship ordinances which ended at Calvary for Hebrews. The Church never was under the Old Covenant Law.
19. NOT FOR GOSPEL WORKER SUPPORT: The New Covenant neither commands nor condemns full time gospel workers.
20. NOT SUPPORTED BY CHURCH HISTORY: No early church father suggested tithing for over 200 years. It did not become enforceable for over 700 years. Most U. S. churches did not teach tithing until around 1895.
21. NOT MORAL HERMENEUTIC: Tithing was not repeated to the church in terms of the New Covenant after Calvary.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Reply to JIm Feeney, PHD

Review of Pastor Jim Feeney, Ph.D. by Russell E Kelly, Ph. D.

FEENEY: Acts 20:33 [The apostle Paul said] I have not coveted anyone’s silver or gold.

KELLY: You missed the point. In 3 years at Ephesus Paul had not asked for ONE PENNEY of support. Not only had he been totally self-supporting but he also supported those in his group. He very definitely was not asking for offerings –much less tithes!

FEENEY: It is never our intent at South Valley Church to covet your finances.

KELLY: In Acts 20:29-35 Paul commanded church elders to work and care for the needy in their churches. He quoted Jesus to back up his point

FEENEY: But there is an area of finances that we do covet — that is, that the Lord receive his tithe.

KELLY: There is not a single text after Calvary for the Church to tithe. In the OT the Levites and priests received the first tithe.

FEENEY: Leviticus 27:30, 32 A tithe of everything from the land...BELONGS TO THE LORD... The tenth (ten percent) of our gross increase belongs to the Lord.

KELLY: The text defines HOLY tithes as only food from inside God’s HOLY land which God had miraculously increased. Tithes could not come from what man produced, from Gentiles or from outside Israel.

FEENEY: Wealthy Abraham, the first great patriarch of Israel, gave tithes centuries before Moses’ Law (Genesis 14).

KELLY: Why did Abraham tithe pagan spoils of war? The Bible does not say that God commanded it or that he gave it freely. In the context of 14:21 he was obeying the law of the land which REQUIRED tithes of spoils of war to one’s local king-priest.

FEENEY: Poor Jacob, the father of the twelve tribes of Israel, gave the tithe, also before the Law — Genesis 28:22 “And of all that you give me I will give you a TENTH.”

KELLY: Quote the entire text. This was Jacob the supplanter telling God what to do as part of a freewill vow. His tithe was not a holy tithe of the law.

FEENEY: In the Law that God gave through Moses to God’s people, there were clear commandments to give tithes —

KELLY: Only to Old Covenant national Israel. And Israel was commanded NOT to share its covenant with the Gentiles.

FEENEY: Leviticus 27:30, 32 A tithe of everything from the land...belongs to the LORD; it is holy to the Lord. ... The entire tithe of the herd and flock — every tenth animal ... — will be holy to the Lord.

KELLY: Only FOOD increased from inside God’s HOLY land of Israel. Tithes could not come from defiled pagan land.

FEENEY: Ten lambs born? They gave the Lord one. Ten bushels of wheat harvested? They gave the Lord one. They tithed — that is, they gave ten percent — on the "gross" increase.

KELLY: “They” were farmers and herdsmen who lived inside Israel. “They” were not Gentiles or craftsmen.

FEENEY: My tithe “belongs [not to me, but] to the Lord.”

KELLY: Unless your are an Old Covenant Hebrew living inside Israel and producing food, then YOU cannot tithe. You may give 10% of your income, but that is not a true biblical tithe.

FEENEY: 1,500 years after Moses received the Law, Jesus REAFFIRMED in His day the validity of tithing:

Matthew 23:23 Woe to you, teachers of the Law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! YOU GIVE A TENTH of your spices — mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law — justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, WITHOUT NEGLECTING THE FORMER.

KELLY: Jesus was living under the jurisdiction of the Law and was discussing MATTERS OF THE LAW. The tithe went to the Levites and not to Jesus. Jesus could not tell his Jewish or Gentile disciples to tithe to him because it would have been sin to do so. Mt 23:23 is still Old Covenant before Calvary (Gal 4-5).

FEENEY: Later in the New Testament, in 1 Corinthians, ch. 9, the apostle Paul teaches on the financial support of the work of God and uses commands from Moses’ Law as guidelines — 1 Corinthians 9:8

KELLY: This would have been the perfect time to clearly teach on tithing and Paul did not.

FEENEY: "Doesn’t the Law say the SAME thing?" (referring to how the priests lived on the tithes and offerings). Paul brought the principle of the Levitical tithe — "the SAME thing" — over to the support of New Testament ministry.

KELLY: The argument is self defeating because it would force the church to copy “IN THE SAME WAY” ALL of the types of support of the Levitical system and not merely tithing. The “principle” from 9:7 to 9:14 is that each vocation has its own principles of support. The Christian principle is “grace and faith” – not law.

FEENEY: Should Christians tithe? The words of both Jesus and Paul seem clearly to bring tithing into New Testament times.

KELLY: No. Christians cannot tithe even if they wanted to do so. And the tithing STATUTE of Numbers 18 required Levitical tithe-recipients to forfeit property ownership. That is ignored too.

FEENEY: In the history of the New Testament Church since the first century, biblical tithing has been commonly, although not universally, taught and practiced.

KELLY: There is no record of any kind of tithing taught in the early church for at least 200 years after Calvary and even Cyprian’s attempt failed. Tithing did not become legally enforced in the Church for over 700 years. Even then it was only food off church-owned property.

FEENEY: In fact, tithing was a common religious practice in many nations in the ancient world.

KELLY: This proves that pagans tithed spoils of war before Abraham was born. They also worshipped idols and sacrificed children. Being old and common does not make something eternal and moral.

FEENEY: 2 Chronicles 31:12 Then they FAITHFULLY brought in the contributions, tithes and dedicated gifts.

KELLY: Because the king had erroneously told them to bring it to Jerusalem it rotted in the streets. Read 31:15-19 where it was re-shipped back to the Levitical cities.

FEENEY: Tithing is an indicator of our FAITHFULNESS. It’s a weekly, semimonthly, or monthly opportunity to demonstrate to God your faithfulness and commitment to His work on earth.

KELLY: Texts? NT giving is: freewill, generous, sacrificial, joyful, not by commandment and motivated by love for God and lost souls (2 Cor 8 and 9).

FEENEY: Giving our "tenth" is an indicator of our GENEROSITY. And God takes notice of the attitude of generosity: “God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7).

KELLY: Tithes were cold hard law and must be given by food producers inside Israel whether they desired to or not.

FEENEY: Numbers 18:21 I give to the LEVITES all the tithes in Israel as their inheritance IN RETURN FOR THE WORK THEY DO while serving at the Tent of Meeting.

KELLY: The Church does not obey a single tithing command found in Numbers 18. Levites, who received the first whole tithe, were NOT the ministering priests; they were the servants to the priests.

FEENEY: Biblical tithing allows God-called ministers to devote themselves fully to the Lord’s work.

KELLY: The Bible neither endorses nor discusses whether gospel workers should be full time.

FEENEY: Levites/priests in the Old Testament, fivefold ministers (apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers) in the New Testament.

KELLY: No. Modern Jews do not tithe because there is no temple or priesthood. Levites vaguely correspond to unpaid ushers, deacons, choir, musicians, etc. All NT believers are priests. Gospel workers more closely follow the example of OT prophets who were either self-supporting or lived off freewill offerings.

FEENEY: Malachi 3:8-10 "Will a man ROB GOD? Yet you rob me.” But you ask, 'How do we rob you?' "In TITHES AND OFFERINGS. (9)You are under a curse — the whole nation of you — because you are robbing me.

KELLY: Malachi is addressed to Old Covenant Israel under the Law. According to Malachi 1:6; 2:1; 2:17 and Neh 13:5-10, “every priest in the nation” was stealing from God by keeping the best for themselves. Also, no born again adopted child of God can be cursed (Gal 3:10-13).

FEENEY: (10) Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house.

KELLY: Only Levites and priests were required to do this per Neh 10:38-39.The people were commanded to bring their tithe to the Levitical cities per Neh 10:37b.

FEENEY: Test me in this," says the LORD Almighty, "and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.

KELLY: The whole law was a test –not merely tithing. Obey all to be blessed; break one to be cursed. Gal 3:10-13.

FEENEY: 6. Why do I believe in tithing (and giving offerings also)? I wouldn’t want to take a chance on God considering me a ROBBER!

KELLY: Robbers accept something which only belonged to OT Levites and priests. You rob God if you do not obey all the tithing law of Numbers 18 and own property.

FEENEY: 7. Why do I believe in tithing? Because God says He wants His “house” to be ABUNDANTLY supplied.

KELLY: The early church did not even have its own buildings legally until after AD325.

FEENEY: Why tithe? Because God says if I am faithful in tithes and offerings, He will open the windows of heaven and pour me out abundant blessings.

KELLY: God cannot and will not bless New Covenant believers because of their obedience to annulled Old Covenant conditional promises (Heb 7:5, 12, 18). Only “successful tithers” are paraded before the church pulpit while most that are not blessed sit quietly and wonder why they are cursed even after tithing.

FEENEY: Proverbs 3:9-10, KJV Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: [10] So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.

KELLY: Firstfruits and tithes are never the same thing in the Bible. Firstfruits are very small token offerings per Deu 26:1-4; Neh 10:35-37a, etc, etc, etc.

Monday, July 12, 2010



Micah was addressed to both Israel (Samaria) and Judah (1:1; 3:9). God is speaking from his temple in heaven (1:2). He is coming to punish Israel and Judah (1:5). He will desolate Israel’s idols (1:7). Their “wound is incurable” (1:9). As is typical of all the prophets, the majority of the test is God’s rebuke of the sins of His people (all).

4:1 But in the last days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the house of the LORD shall be established in the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and people shall flow unto it.

The prophet moves back and forth from here to the end of the book from describing the (Millennial) Kingdom rule on earth of the Messiah and events which preceded it (4:1+). These events all take place on earth and not in heaven.

4:2 And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the law shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.

This seems to parallel Zechariah 14:16-21 following the horrible events of its preceding verses (4:2).

4:3 And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.

4:4 But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the LORD of hosts hath spoken it.

4:5 For all people will walk every one in the name of his god, and we will walk in the name of the LORD our God for ever and ever.

Messiah’s reign on earth will be universal during the Millennium Rev 20). While other nations may refer to God in a name which has significant meaning to themselves (such as Most High), Israel will continue to call God by His covenant name of Yahweh (4:5).

4:6 In that day, saith the LORD, will I assemble her that halteth, and I will gather her that is driven out, and her that I have afflicted.

4:7 And I will make her that halted a remnant, and her that was cast far off a strong nation: and the LORD shall reign over them in mount Zion from henceforth, even for ever.

“Henceforth” means “from this time forward.” Our God is a healing and comforting God (4:6).

4:8 And thou, O tower of the flock, the strong hold of the daughter of Zion, unto thee shall it come, even the first dominion; the kingdom shall come to the daughter of Jerusalem.

This is speaking of a literal kingdom rule on earth from Jerusalem. Oddly, there are no conditional discussions in Micah. At the very least, beginning in 4:1 the text is unconditional.

4:10 Be in pain, and labour to bring forth, O daughter of Zion, like a woman in travail: for now shalt thou go forth out of the city, and thou shalt dwell in the field, and thou shalt go even to Babylon; there shalt thou be delivered; there the LORD shall redeem thee from the hand of thine enemies.

The Babylonian captivity here may be a type of a future captivity immediately before God establishes Zion. This is because Assyria is mentioned afterwards and Assyria had disappeared before the Babylonian Captivity in 586 B.C.

4:11 Now also many nations are gathered against thee, that say, Let her be defiled, and let our eye look upon Zion.

After a return from captivity many nations will assemble against Israel. This could parallel Ezekiel 38 and 39. It could occur before the Great Tribulation period of Daniel’s seventieth week or it could be a reference to Revelation 16 or 20.

5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

By Divine inspiration Micah’s prophecy reaches forward to the final unconditional fulfillment when Messiah will settle Israel in its land during the His Kingdom reign on earth (5:2). Messiah is to be a “ruler in Israel.” The focus is the land of Israel and not heaven.

5:3 Therefore will he give them up, until the time that she which travaileth hath brought forth: then the remnant of his brethren shall return unto the children of Israel.

Micah 5:2-3 combine the first and second advent of Christ as does Isaiah 9:6-7 and 61:1-2. During the Church Age between AD70 of Daniel 9:26 and the 70th week of Daniel 9:27 Christ will temporarily “give up” Israel until the full remnant returns at the beginning of the Millennium (Rev 20).

5:4 And he shall stand and feed in the strength of the LORD, in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God; and they shall abide: for now shall he be great unto the ends of the earth.

Verses 3 and 4 describe the final status of Messiah’s kingdom reign which is “great unto the ends of the earth.” This reign is on earth, not in heaven (5:4). Verses 5 to 15 describe how this was accomplished.

5:5 And this man shall be the peace, when the Assyrian shall come into our land: and when he shall tread in our palaces, then shall we raise against him seven shepherds, and eight principal men.

5:6 And they shall waste the land of Assyria with the sword, and the land of Nimrod in the entrances thereof: thus shall he deliver us from the Assyrian, when he cometh into our land, and when he treadeth within our borders. Also include 5:9-15.

The “Assyrian” here must be symbolic since 4:10 mentions the Babylonian Captivity and literal Assyria had long ago disappeared. This invasion of Israel’s last day enemies could coincide either with Ezekiel 38 and 39 or Revelation 16 and 17.

5:7 And the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people as a dew from the LORD, as the showers upon the grass, that tarrieth not for man, nor waiteth for the sons of men.

5:8 And the remnant of Jacob shall be among the Gentiles in the midst of many people as a lion among the beasts of the forest, as a young lion among the flocks of sheep: who, if he go through, both treadeth down, and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver.
While Micah 5:5-6 appears to be the same as Ezekiel 38 and 39,
Micah 5:7-8 appears to be a description of the (Millennial) Kingdom reign of Christ on earth with a rod of iron. Righteous believers within Gentile nations will be soul-winners.

7:18 Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy.

Micah 7:18 is an incredible text. The very character of God is in view. God’s most important characteristic is His mercy – “He delights in mercy.” God cannot (and will not) remain angry with “the remnant of his heritage (of national Israel) for ever.” This is consistent with Dispensational theology.

7:19 He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.

This is unconditional wording just as the “and I will” statements of the Abrahamic Covenant from Genesis 12:2-3.

7:20 Thou wilt perform the truth to Jacob, and the mercy to Abraham, which thou hast sworn unto our fathers from the days of old.

God promises to perform his unconditional covenant made with Abraham and Jacob. This is not a discussion of the Church.

Saturday, July 10, 2010



Obidiah is addressed to the kingdom of Edom (Esau) (v1). Because of its treatment of Israel, Edom as a nation “shalt be cut off for ever” (v10). (Yet we read in Amos 9:12 that believers in Edom will not utterly perish.) The day of the LORD will come as a punishment to Edom (v15).

17 But upon mount Zion shall be deliverance, and there shall be holiness; and the house of Jacob shall possess their possessions.

20 And the captivity of this host of the children of Israel shall possess that of the Canaanites, even unto Zarephath; and the captivity of Jerusalem, which is in Sepharad, shall possess the cities of the south.

21 And saviours shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be the LORD's.

Like the other prophets, Obadiah ends with an unconditional promise that God would restore Israel as a nation (v17, 20, 21).

Friday, July 09, 2010



Amos was addressed to northern Israel during the reign of Jeroboam II (2:6). God will “roar” from Jerusalem (1:2).

Amos 5:2 The virgin of Israel is fallen; she shall no more rise: she is forsaken upon her land; there is none to raise her up.

In the strongest of words, God seems to indicate that Israel will never again be restored (5:2). In the context of 9:11-15 this must be understood as a reference to the generation which went into captivity.

Amos 5:18 Woe unto you that desire the day of the LORD! to what end is it for you? the day of the LORD is darkness, and not light.

The Day of the LORD can have a two-fold application: (1) it can punish Israel’s enemies or (2) it can punish Israel (5:8). God will raise up a “nation” against them (6:14). “Israel shall surely go into captivity” (7:17).

Amos 8:2 … The end is come upon my people of Israel; I will not again pass by them any more.

Again God appears to be about to end all relations with Israel (8:2). The sun will be darkened when Israel is punished (8:9). There will be a famine of hearing the word of the LORD (8:11).

Amos 9:8 Behold, the eyes of the Lord GOD are upon the sinful kingdom, and I will destroy it from off the face of the earth; ---saving that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jacob, saith the LORD.

Amos 9:9 For, lo, I will command, and I will sift the house of Israel among all nations, like as corn is sifted in a sieve, YET shall not the least grain fall upon the earth.

Amos 9:10 All the sinners of my people shall die by the sword, which say, The evil shall not overtake nor prevent us.

Amos 9:8 is one of the most important texts in the Bible which explains the Dispensational approach to prophecy. In the same verse God says that (1) He will destroy Israel “from off the face to the earth” and also says “Saving [Nevertheless: NAS; except: RSV] that I will not utterly destroy the house of Jocob.” A “house” is NOT a spiritual kingdom or the Church. A “house” refers to the literal physical nation of Israel. Regardless of how many and how harsh the rebukes and curses placed upon Israel and Judah, God refuses to UTTERLY destroy them!

Amos 9:11 In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old:

After God scatters Israel (9:9), He promises to restore the literal house of David to its former status (9:11). This is worded as an unconditional prophecy and is not a reference to the Church. The final fulfillment is yet future.

Amos 9:12 That they may possess the remnant of Edom, and of all the heathen, which are called by my name, saith the LORD that doeth this.

The restoration of Israel will also result in the restoration of Esau’s remnant of Edom. Even more, it will result in the inclusion of the nations [Gentiles: NKJ] “which are called by my name.” Because of this prophecy in 9:12, the Apostle James was convinced that God’s plan included the salvation of the Gentiles (Acts 15:14-18).

Amos 9:14 And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them.

The returning remnant of Israel will turn the land into a garden (9:13-14).

Amos 9:15 And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the LORD thy God.

Israel will once again be placed into its land and “no more be pulled out of their land which I have given them.” This prophecy must be literally interpreted and will be literally fulfilled. It makes no sense to spiritualize it as a reference to heaven. Again, like the other prophets, Amos does not have the conclusion that God will eventually “utterly” forsake Israel as his chosen heritage (9:11-15).

Thursday, July 08, 2010



Joel is addressed to Judah and Jerusalem of the southern kingdom. It builds on a literal locust invasion to describe the Day of the Lord to punish Judah’s sins (2:1). “A great and strong people” will invade and devour the land (2:2-3). There are no words to actually describe the army (2:4-5). Their army and abilities are incredible (2:7-9). The sun, moon and stars will be affected by their invasion (2:10). It is even called the “LORD’s army” because it is punishing wicked Judah for Him (2:11).

Judah is called to gather for national repentance (2:12-19).

More details of chapter 2 are given in chapter 3.

3:1 For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem,

Judah and Jerusalem will return from captivity (3:1).

3:2 I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.

All nations gather and invade Israel. God is jealous for his heritage Israel (3:2, 9-12).

3:12 Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about.

God judges the nations inside Israel (3:12-14).

3:15 The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining.

The Day of the Lord is announced by omens in the sun, moon and stars. Good omens for Judah and bad omens foor the Gentile nations (3:15).

3:16 The LORD also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the LORD will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel.

God roars and delivers Jerusalem (3:16).

2:20 But I will remove far off from you the northern army, and will drive him into a land barren and desolate, with his face toward the east sea, and his hinder part toward the utmost sea, and his stink shall come up, and his ill savour shall come up, because he hath done great things.

The northern army will be cast out and destroyed (2:20). God’s land and the beasts and trees on it will be comforted (2:21-22). The former and latter rain return and total restoration returns (2:23-27).

Joel 2:27 And ye shall know that I am in the midst of Israel, and that I am the LORD your God, and none else: and my people shall never be ashamed.

The restoration will be for ever (2:27).

Joel 2:28 And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions:

Joel 2:29 And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit.

After the restoration of Judah there will be a great revival in the land. Instead of the Holy Spirit only being poured out on one person at a time, it will be poured out on all believers.

Joel 2:30 And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.

Joel 2:31 The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come.

There will be another round of heavenly signs –this time for good instead of evil—for blessing instead of curses and punishment.

Joel 2:32 And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered: for in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call.

A revival of salvation will occur among the remnant of Judah and Jerusalem. Details follow in chapter 3.

3:17 So shall ye know that I am the LORD your God dwelling in Zion, my holy mountain: then shall Jerusalem be holy, and there shall no strangers pass through her any more.

3:18 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the mountains shall drop down new wine, and the hills shall flow with milk, and all the rivers of Judah shall flow with waters, and a fountain shall come forth of the house of the LORD, and shall water the valley of Shittim.

3:19 Egypt shall be a desolation, and Edom shall be a desolate wilderness, for the violence against the children of Judah, because they have shed innocent blood in their land.

3:20 But Judah shall dwell for ever, and Jerusalem from generation to generation.
3:21 For I will cleanse their blood that I have not cleansed: for the LORD dwelleth in Zion.

Sequence of events in Joel:
1. Judah has sinned.
2. A great northern army invades. The Day of the Lord is a bad omen for Judah.
3. Judah is taken captive.
4. Judah prays for deliverance.
5. God roars and Judah is returned to its land.
6. All nations invade.
7. All nations are judged.
8. Total restoration; the former and latter rain falls.

Like most of the prophets, Joel ends with the complete restoration of Judah and Jerusalem. There is not a hint from Joel that God will eventually totally reject his heritage of the elect of national Israel.


HOSEA: Hosea is addressed to Northern Israel and especially its most important tribe of Ephraim in Samaria. It is 14 chapters long. Except for chapter 14, almost every word of every chapter is a condemnation of Israel’s sins and God’s promises to punish it (4:1). “I will destroy thy mother” (4:5). “I will reject thee (4:6). I will forget thy children (4:7). They shall “fall in their iniquity” (5:5). “The LORD “hath withdrawn himself from them” (5:6). “Ephraim shall be desolate in the day of rebuke” (5:9).

Hosea 5:15 “I will go and return to my place, till they acknowledge their offence, and seek my face: in their affliction they will seek me early.

6:1 Come, and let us return unto the LORD: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up.

6:2 After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.

6:3 Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.”

Four short verses which remind us of the resurrection of Chris interrupt the curses on Ephraim.

From 6:4 to 10:11 the rebuke and curse resume. “They shall not dwell in the LORD’s land” (9:3). “I will drive them out of my house. I will love them no more” (9:15).

A single verse of hope interrupts the rebuke. Hosea 10:12 “Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till he come and rain righteousness upon you.”

Hosea 11:8 How shall I give thee up, Ephraim? how shall I deliver thee, Israel? how shall I make thee as Admah? how shall I set thee as Zeboim? mine heart is turned within me, my repentings are kindled together.

Hosea 11:9 I will not execute the fierceness of mine anger, I will not return to destroy Ephraim: for I am God, and not man; the Holy One in the midst of thee: and I will not enter into the city.

Hosea 11:10 They shall walk after the LORD: he shall roar like a lion: when he shall roar, then the children shall tremble from the west.

Hosea 11:11 They shall tremble as a bird out of Egypt, and as a dove out of the land of Assyria: and I will place them in their houses, saith the LORD.”

However, as bad as things appear, God states clearly that He does not intend to give up Ephraim forever. Hos 11:8-11. This literal unconditional prophecy was not fulfilled in 538 BC, 457 BC nor 444 BC and has not been fulfilled yet.

Hosea 12:9 “And I that am the LORD thy God from the land of Egypt will yet make thee to dwell in tabernacles, as in the days of the solemn feast.”

Hosea 12:9 is not worded in conditional terms.

Hosea 14:1 O Israel, return unto the LORD thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity.

Hosea 14:2 Take with you words, and turn to the LORD: say unto him, Take away all iniquity, and receive us graciously: so will we render the calves of our lips.

Hosea 14:3 Asshur shall not save us; we will not ride upon horses: neither will we say any more to the work of our hands, Ye are our gods: for in thee the fatherless findeth mercy.

Hosea 14:4 I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely: for mine anger is turned away from him.

Hosea 14:5 I will be as the dew unto Israel: he shall grow as the lily, and cast forth his roots as Lebanon.

Hosea 14:6 His branches shall spread, and his beauty shall be as the olive tree, and his smell as Lebanon.

Hosea 14:7 They that dwell under his shadow shall return; they shall revive as the corn, and grow as the vine: the scent thereof shall be as the wine of Lebanon.

Hosea 14:8 Ephraim shall say, What have I to do any more with idols? I have heard him, and observed him: I am like a green fir tree. From me is thy fruit found.

Hosea 14:9 Who is wise, and he shall understand these things? prudent, and he shall know them? for the ways of the LORD are right, and the just shall walk in them: but the transgressors shall fall therein.

Like most of the prophets, Hosea ends with hope and promises of a revived nation of Israel. There is no hint that God will eventually totally reject Israel as his chosen nation.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010



Deut 30:1 And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee,

Deu 30:2 And shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul;

Deu 30:3 That then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee.

Deu 30:4 If any of thine be driven out unto the outmost parts of heaven, from thence will the LORD thy God gather thee, and from thence will he fetch thee:

Deu 30:5 And the LORD thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it; and he will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers.

Deu 30:6 And the LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live.

1. Within the context of the Old Covenant law, all of God’s blessings became conditional to obedience of all commandments, statutes and judgments of the Law (Deu 28:14, 58; 30:16, etc).

Deut 28:49 The LORD shall bring a nation against thee from far, from the end of the earth, as swift as the eagle flieth; a nation whose tongue thou shalt not understand.

2. As part of the curse of the Law, Israel would be invaded by a faraway powerful nation (28:49).

Deut 28:64 And the LORD shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; and there thou shalt serve other gods, which neither thou nor thy fathers have known, even wood and stone.

3. History validates that while in captivity Israel finally stopped worshipping other gods and became Monotheistic.
4. Moses prophesied that the time would come when all Israel would remember its former covenant with God while in captivity (30:1).
5. All Israel would return from its lands of captivity (not as Christians) but as Hebrews determined to obey the Old Covenant Law (30:2). This did not occur in 538 BC, 457 BC or 444 BC and has not yet occurred. It is still future.
6. Seeing their sincerity, God will miraculously assist all Israel in its return to the land of promise (30:3).
7. God will regather the Hebrew people from the most regions of the Earth (30:4).
8. Israel will once again be blessed in the land (30:5).
9. The importance of physical circumcision as a token will be replaced by the importance of inner renewal and circumcision of the heart (30:6).
10. The literal wording indicates that eventually all Israel will finally be restored to their land in peace. “When all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse … That then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity.” Moses was addressing all Israel. In 538 BC, 457 BC, 444 BC only Judah and Benjamin returned with part of the Levites and priests. None of the returns to date have involved a return of faith.

Heb 10:7 Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will , O God.
Heb 10:8 Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law;
Heb 10:9 Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will , O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.

11. Just as God personally guaranteed the Abrahamic Covenant as unconditional in Genesis 15, even so Jesus Christ –as Israel personified—has made the unconditional Old Covenant into a fulfilled unconditional covenant in which all the commands have already been perfectly kept (Heb 10:7-9; compare Mt 2:25).



2 Sam 7:11 Also the LORD telleth thee that he will make thee an house.

2 Sam 7:12 And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom.

2 Sam 7:13 He shall build an house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever.

2 Sam 7:14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:

2 Sam 7:15 But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee.

1. The Davidic Covenant is more associated with the Abrahamic Covenant than it is the Old Covenant Law.
2. God had unconditionally promised Abraham that “kings” would come from his seed. The Old Covenant established a theocracy with God ruling through judges. Therefore the Old must eventually yield to the Abrahamic in this area also (Gen 17:6).
3. Since David had determined to build a physical house for God, God promised to build David a literal physical house (7:11). The plain reading of these texts do not allow for a spiritual fulfillment which annuls a literal physical fulfillment.
4. Unlike King Saul whose ruling lineage came to an end, God promised David that his literal throne would not end with his death (7:12).

Matt 19:28 And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones , judging the twelve tribes of Israel.(Also Luke 22:30)

Acts 2:30 Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne.

5. Concerning Solomon God plainly and literally said “I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever.” This became a literal throne over a literal nation which existed on Earth from 1010 BC until 586 BC. God remembered his promise to David and Jesus will eventually and literally sit on a literal physical throne over restored Israel during the Millennium (7:13; Acts 2:30). Matthew 19:28 makes no sense at all unless the 12 disciples will rule over and judge Israel while both are in heaven.
6. Like the Abrahamic Covenant, the Davidic Covenant is unconditional. Even though David’s physical lineage will sin and bring a (temporary conditional) delay in the final fulfillment, the covenant is assured of God (7:14).



The Old Covenant Law


Ex 19:5 Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine:
Ex 19:6 And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.

Ex 20:2 I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.

Ex 23:32 Thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor with their gods. [also Deu 7:2]

Gal 3:17 And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect.

Gal 3:18 For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.

Gal 3:19 Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.

Gal 3:24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

Gal 3:25 But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.

1. The Old Covenant Law was always inferior to the Abrahamic Covenant and could not displace it (Gal 3:17018).
2. The Law, or Old Covenant, was temporarily added alongside the Abrahamic Covenant (Gal 3:19).
3. The Law had a beginning and ending time (Gal 3:19, 26).
4. The Law was given to national Israel as a child-tutor to keep it in obedience until Christ should arrive (Gal 3:25).
5. The Law as the Old Covenant was only given to national Israel in order to exalt it above all other nations (Ex 19:5-6).
6. Old Covenant national Israel was commanded by God NOT to share its Law (covenant) with other nations (Gentiles) (Ex 23:32; Deu 7:2).
7. The Law was never a means of salvation by faith as it followed the justification at Passover and the baptism at the Red Sea (Gen 15:6; Rom 4:2; Gal 2:16; Titus 2:11).
8. While Gentiles were not under THE literal Old Covenant Law, they were judged according to their faith response to nature and conscience which reflect the eternal moral law of God’s character (Rom 1:18-21; 2:14-16).
9. Again, the conditional Old Covenant Law cannot and has not replaced the unconditional Abrahamic Covenant (Gal 3:17-18).

The Abrahamic Covenant and the Land

Russell Earl Kelly, PHD and Danny Guider, D. Mon.
July 6, 2010 b


This book is a simple historical flow of Bible prophecy from Abraham to Revelation. Although it is not an apologetic which discusses many ways to look at most texts, it is an honest attempt to incorporate all questions within the discussion. This book is not “fiction based on the Bible” nor is it a story to entertain. It is a straightforward discussion of what most dispensationalists believe God’s Word teaches about Bible prophecy. With a prayer for Divine wisdom, let us begin.


Gen 12:1 Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:

Gen 12:2 And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:

Gen 12:3 And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.

Gen 12:4 So Abram departed, as the LORD had spoken unto him; and Lot went with him: and Abram was seventy and five years old when he departed out of Haran.

The Abrahamic Covenant is the foundation and cornerstone of Dispensational theology. It has the following characteristics:

1. UNCONDIIONAL: Although it briefly began as an conditional covenant, it very quickly became an unconditional covenant. According to Genesis 12:1 the only condition was for Abram leave Haran and move to the land of Canaan. God said “Get the out” (the only condition) and Genesis 12:4 says “And Abram departed.” There is no hidden meaning. The Word is very simple and clear. The Abrahamic covenant is unconditional. That means that God absolutely will remember and enforce His covenant made with Abraham even before he had been circumcised.
2. GREAT NATION: “And I will make of thee a great nation.” God has unconditionally promised to Abram that a “great nation” will come from his seed. At this point of time it is not clear what is meant by “great nation.” Since the physical borders of Israel never comes close to the physical boundaries of many “great nations,” this could refer to its gift to the world, its accomplishments or its final destiny as the center of God’s kingdom on Earth.
3. BLESSINGS FROM ABRAHAM: “And I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing.” Without a doubt this part of the unconditional covenant has already been accomplished and will continue to do so.
4. BLESSINGS TO THOSE WHO BLESS ABRAHAM: “And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee.” This is a blessing to those individuals and nations which treat Abraham’s physical seed and literal nation of Israel well. This is a key point of Dispensational theology because this unconditional blessing did not cease at Calvary. If God has forever cast off the Hebrew people and replaced it with the Church, this prophecy has failed.
5. MESSIAH: “And in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.” The Apostle Paul, inspired by the Holy Spirit, interpreted this to be a reference to Jesus Christ in Galatians 3:16.

The Abrahamic Covenant has thus far been proven to be both inspired and unconditional. Although one of the smallest nations on Earth, thus far Israel has given the world most of its major religions. The names of Abraham, King David and King Solomon are known everywhere. And Jesus Christ has been the redeemer of many millions of Christians over the centuries.

Dispensationalists remind others that God has (and is still) enforcing the portions of the covenant which concern the name, nation and blessings through Jesus Christ. It is, therefore, expected for us to also believe that God still enforces the unconditional portion of the covenant which pertains to blessings for those who bless Abraham, Hebrews and Israel.


Gen 13:14 Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward:

Gen 13:15 For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever.

Gen 13:16 And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered.

Gen 13:17 Arise, walk through the land in the length of it and in the breadth of it; for I will give it unto thee.

This is an addendum to the basic covenant of Genesis 12 which did not specifically mention the land as an inheritance. While it is true that the word “forever” can often mean “as long as you live” (Ex 21:6), it will be seen throughout this book that the promise of the land is repeated scores of times in almost every Old Testament book. The promises of the eternal land becomes the promise of God’s literal kingdom on earth with Jerusalem in Israel as its capital city. The use of the word “forever” definitely places this into the category of unconditional prophecy and it will often be pointed out that the prophets never ceased to remind God of this unconditional prophecy.


Gen 15:8 Lord GOD, whereby shall I know that I shall inherit it (this land)?

Gen 15:10 And he took unto him all these [sacrificial animals], and divided them in the midst, and laid each piece one against another: but the birds divided he not.

Gen 15:12 And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him.

Gen 15:17 And it came to pass, that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold a smoking furnace, and a burning lamp that passed between those pieces.

Gen 15:18 In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates.

Genesis 15 is a very important chapter for Dispensationalists. God again added to the basic covenant of chapter 12. Normally a covenants involved the two parties walking between the cut portions of the sacrificial animals confirming mutual compliance to each other. This covenant was very different. God put Abram to sleep and passed between the cut pieces alone.

This strange ritual is recorded for all of us in God’s Word for a very important reason. God wants everybody to know beyond doubt that His covenant with Abraham concerning the land is unconditional. Concerning the land –only God’s obedience can guarantee that Abraham’s seed will possess the land. Concerning the land – disobedience on the part of Abraham or his seed might delay the fulfillment but the ultimate fulfillment of the land promise is assured by God. It is inconceivable to Dispensationalists to interpret Genesis 15 in any other manner than its clear literal reading.

“If it is a literal covenant to be fulfilled literally, then Israel must be preserved, converted and restored.” Dwight Pentecost, Things to Come, Zondervan, 1958, p73.


“An unconditional covenant which renders a covenanted program certain may have conditional blessings attached. The [unconditional] program will be carried to fulfillment, but the individual receives the blessings of that program only by conforming to conditions on which the blessings depend.” Pentecost, ibid, 79.

Gen 17:1 … walk before me, and be thou perfect.
Gen 17:2 And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly.
Gen 17:4 … my covenant is with thee, and thou shalt be a father of many nations.

In the context of verse 4, verses 1 and 2 must mean that God will continue His covenant. God is not here refuting His previous promises.

Gen 17:5 Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee.
Gen 17:6 And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of thee, and kings shall come out of thee.
Gen 17:7 And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee.
Gen 17:8 And I will give unto thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.

This is a repetition of the unconditional covenant promises from chapters 12, 13 and 15. Up to this point God has said that His covenant with Abraham, including the land, was “for ever” (13:15), “an everlasting covenant” (17:7) and “an everlasting possession” (17:8). At some point it become ridiculous to say that all of these terms means something other than what they literally say.

Gen 17:9 And God said unto Abraham, Thou shalt keep my covenant therefore, thou, and thy seed after thee in their generations.
Gen 17:10 This is my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised.
Gen 17:11 And ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant betwixt me and you.
Gen 17:12 And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of thy seed.
Gen 17:13 He that is born in thy house, and he that is bought with thy money, must needs be circumcised: and my covenant shall be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.
Gen 17:14 And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he hath broken my covenant.

Circumcision is now added as a token of the covenant. Although it is a condition, it is not a condition which can annul the ultimate fulfillment of the unconditional covenant. Circumcision is merely a limiting factor which defines those within the covenant.

Gen 17:19 And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.

Gen 17:20 And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation.
Gen 17:21 But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year.
Gen 17:22 And he left off talking with him, and God went up from Abraham.
Gen 17:23 And Abraham took Ishmael his son, and all that were born in his house, and all that were bought with his money, every male among the men of Abraham's house; and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin in the selfsame day, as God had said unto him.
Gen 17:26 In the selfsame day was Abraham circumcised, and Ishmael his son.
Gen 17:27 And all the men of his house, born in the house, and bought with money of the stranger, were circumcised with him.

Rom 9:6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:
Rom 9:7 Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called.

The covenant is being narrowed to the children of Promise. Concerning the Promises of the Messiah. Isaac will be accepted and Ishmael rejected; Jacob will be accepted and Esau rejected. Judah will be accepted and Reuben rejected. Those within literal Israel who accept the Messiah will be considered the true Israel of God.


Gen 22:15 And the angel of the LORD called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time,

Gen 22:16 And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son:

Gen 22:17 That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies;

Gen 22:18 And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice.


Gen 35:11 And God said unto him [JACOB], I am God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins;

Gen 35:12 And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land.

God’s promises go far beyond the so-called “fulfillment” in Joshua. They include “kings” which were many centuries away. And they include the “land.”


Gen 48:4 [JACOB TO JOSEPH] And said unto me, Behold, I will make thee fruitful, and multiply thee, and I will make of thee a multitude of people; and will give this land to thy seed after thee for an everlasting possession.

Gen 49:1 And Jacob called unto his sons, and said, Gather yourselves together, that I may tell you that which shall befall you in the last days.

Although one might argue about whatever Jacob meant by “in the last days,” the appearance of “the last days” has all tribes of Israel in their own land.

Gen 49:8 Judah, thou art he whom thy brethren shall praise
Gen 49:10 The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be.

At the very minimum, it must be admitted that the tribe of Judah would survive long enough to bring forth a king and lawgiver.

Gen 49:22 Joseph is a fruitful bough, even a fruitful bough by a well; whose branches run over the wall:
Gen 49:26 The blessings of thy father have prevailed above the blessings of my progenitors unto the utmost bound of the everlasting hills: they shall be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of him that was separate from his brethren.

This is an interesting prophecy because Jacob’s sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, disappeared into Assyrian captivity in 722 BC. Yet God knows where they are because the messages of both Jeremiah and Ezekiel are directed to both the “house of Israel” and the “house of Judah.” Even Hebrews 8:6-13 quotes Jeremiah 31 in its New Covenant which goes first to the “house of Israel” and the “house of Judah.” In order for Ephraim and Manasseh to still exist when “the last days” arrive, they must be restored.


Josh 23:14 [Joshua said] … ye know in all your hearts and in all your souls, that not one thing hath failed of all the good things which the LORD your God spake concerning you; all are come to pass unto you, and not one thing hath failed thereof.
Josh 23:15 Therefore it shall come to pass, that as all good things are come upon you, which the LORD your God promised you; so shall the LORD bring upon you all evil things, until he have destroyed you from off this good land which the LORD your God hath given you.

Since the Abrahamic Covenant and its promise of the land continue to be repeated scores of times after Joshua’s declaration, it must be concluded that God is still obligated to continue fulfilling his unconditional covenant. It is absurd for some to quote this text as the final fulfillment of the covenant and conclude that God is no longer obligated. Disobedience has delayed the timing of the final fulfillment but cannot annul the unconditional covenant itself.