No. 5

The Hope of Israel

This Chart is designed to demonstrate the fact that one hope runs throughout the Acts of the Apostles, and that this hope is also that which is before the church ministered to by Paul during the same period.

The epistles of this period are seven. Some there are who do not believe that Hebrews was written by Paul. This is no place for the discussion of such a subject: We must be satisfied with the following suggestion: -

  1. Use of certain phrases such as “Under his feet." .Compare 1 Cor. 15:27,28 with Heb. 2:8.
  2. Peter's statement that Paul wrote at least one epistle to the Circumcision (2 Pet. 3:15).
  3. The "sign manual" in accordance with 2 Thess. 3:17. This is peculiar to Paul's epistles. The reader should test every epistle for this feature.

The three individual epistles are based upon one theme - "The just shall live by faith." Romans stresses "righteousness," "the just". Galatians insists upon "faith," while Hebrews, looking to "the things that accompany salvation," stresses "shall live." The correspondence of the double epistles is self evident.

As to the oneness of the hope. This is obviously true of the Acts itself. In 1:6 and in 28:20 there is but one hope, viz., "The hope of Israel”.

Upon examination this is found to be the case with regard to the church of the period. Romans, being the last epistle of the series and the most dogmatic, will determine the question once for all. Rom. 15:12,13 ("trust" is the same word as "hope") reveals that the hope before the church was connected with Christ as the "root of Jesse," who should "reign over the Gentiles," the reference being to Isa. 11 and the great day of Israel's restoration. Every reference to the hope of the church found in l and 2 Corinthians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians and Galatians is in perfect harmony with this crowning passage.

We therefore place the symbol of hope - the anchor, with its pendant epistles as links in a chain, in such a way that it shall coincide with the whole of the Acts of the Apostles, including its opening and closing references to "the hope of Israel."

"The one hope" of the mystery finds no exposition in these early epistles of Paul. It was essential that "the mystery" itself should be revealed before its hope could be expressed.


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