Some believe that this question, of the Jews gathering to the Holy Land before Jesus comes, refers to the verse in Romans 11:26 which says, “And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written.” What does the apostle Paul mean by this verse?
God’s Conditional Promises to the Jews
The Lord gave many wonderful promises to the literal descendants of Abraham (Galatians 3:16). But, these promises were given on the condition of obedience. The promises themselves did not fail, but the people failed to measure up to the conditions. The promises will still be fulfilled but not to literal Israel after the flesh but to all that accept Jesus by faith or spiritual Israel.
In Galatians 3:27-29, we read: “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
Today, anyone who believes in Christ becomes a member of Christ’s spiritual family and thereby a spiritual descendant of Abraham and heir of the promises that were made. These promises that were given to the unbelieving literal Israel will be fulfilled to the believing spiritual children of God.
The converted gentiles or Jews (Romans 11:13) become grafted in the Olive tree. “For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the body is not one member, but many” (1 Corinthians 12:13,14).
Faith and faithfulness are the conditions for the New Covenant. In Romans 4:13, 16, we read: “For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith…. Therefore, it is of faith that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all.”
Who Will Be Saved?
It is clear that the phrase “all Israel” represents spiritual Israel or the New Testament Church. It points to all the saved (Jews and Gentiles), who make up “all” of true Israel (Romans 2:28, 29; Galatians 6:15, 16). Romans 11:26 goes beyond a national identity and encompasses a universal salvation. In other words, it encompasses all those that are Christ-like in character and resemble their heavenly Father in nature.
To them, Jesus will say: “‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world” (Matthew 25:34). The Lord declares that the, “meek … shall inherit the earth” (Matthew 5:5). The “poor in spirit” are to receive the wealth of the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 5:3); the “meek” are to “inherit the earth.”
It is clear that the “meek” do not now inherit the earth, but rather the ungodly. But in the right time, the kingdoms of this world will be granted to the redeemed, to those who have learned to walk in humility (Daniel 7:27). Those who act humbly—those who learn meekness—will be finally uplifted (Matthew 23:12). We look forward to the day when all God’s children of all races and nations will be gathered as one people and be granted the beautiful Holy Land and the new earth, which will be without any curse of sin.
In His service,