Scripture Query and Answer: The Jewish Remnant

John 7:39  •  4 min. read  •  grade level: 8
Q. On the supposition of a Jewish remnant, distinct from the Church of God, now in process of formation, and the object of God's dealing after we have been caught up, and before we appear with Christ in glory, how far will they all know Jesus? Will they enter into His sufferings, or His glory in heaven? How far will they apprehend the teaching of such Psalms as 8; 68; 80; 110; or of such prophecies as Isa. 53; Dan. 9; Mic. 5; Zech. 12?
A. Two things require to be noticed in replying. First, the supposition of the same degree of knowledge in all is quite, as it seems to me, unfounded. Secondly, we are little aware of the immense difference of common knowledge current in the Church by the presence of the Holy Ghost—that unction from the Holy One by which we know all things, winch will not be then thus present with the remnant, though He will act in producing longings after deliverance and good in the hearts of the remnant, and directing their thoughts to the Scriptures of truth, with an intelligence which the cravings of want alone give. Another point to be noticed is that there are wise ones, who instruct the many in righteousness—wise ones who understand. How many now appreciate the real calling and standing of the Church of God? The godly of that day will cry to Jehovah in their distress, and the more profoundly convinced they are of their sin, the more will they understand the prophetic declarations. They are directed to the law and the testimony, all that is in the Old Testament, and all short of the Church, I apprehend, in the New Testament open to them, such as Matthew and Hebrews Certainly all concerning Christ, as revealed in prophecy, is before them. They will not understand personal forgiveness and acceptance till they see Him—the rejection of Messiah they may feel as their national guilt. How many now have not found personal acceptance with God? The repentance after seeing Him will be wholly different in nature and kind from that before; it will be under grace, and less egotistic. Psa. 8 can be only hope, with a question—shall I be there? But the thought of Messiah, as they have not pardon, will be at the utmost as in an awakened soul who has not the Spirit; the sense of a guilty nation, uncertain whether they will participate in a blessing which faith believes, will come. The degree of the sense of guilt will, of course, vary. I apprehend the Psalms are specially calculated to minister expression and direction to their feelings in that day. Isa. 53 gives hope to the nation, not peace then to the individual. They may know from Psa. 68 that He is gone to heaven, from Psa. 110 that He is at the right hand of God. How little the Jews understood it we learn from the Savior's question. But though there will be individual wants, the nation, their common lot, will be more in their thoughts than personal forgiveness and peace; God's government rather than individual salvation. And all is colored by this. When they see Him, each will mourn apart, Some, I hardly doubt, will have seized the Old Testament instruction as to Christ—perhaps those who are killed and taken up, the saints of the high places. Yet even they will, as to their testimony, be more associated with the God of the earth than we. As regards Daniel, the wise will understand. But he does not speak of atonement, nor any passage I know but Isa. 53; and that is for the nation as they would then understand it. I cannot doubt the guilt of a rejected Messiah will shine in on some souls as regards the nation.
The difficulty for a Christian is to enter into the state and habits of thought of those concerned in these prophecies in that day. It is clear that all the Old Testament prophecies will be before them. But the Holy Ghost, not dwelling in them to guide into all truth, they will seek in distress of soul the answer to their need and circumstances with the feelings of a people. And the wise will instruct the many. I apprehend the Church, and the divine glory of the person of Jesus, will be understood by none till they see Him—certainly not the Church; and then only from without.