I just heard about a religious group in Israel who was planning a gay, straight, and bisexual orgy to promote world peace by encouraging uninterrupted pleasure through uninhibited sex acts. The group called the "Raelian movement," claims hundreds of members in Israel and 70,000 worldwide. They don't believe in the supernatural or in a Creator but that the Earth was implanted with life by aliens.
So my question is this. If the reestablishment of Israel was a divinely initiated event, and Romans 11:25-32 includes physical Israel, did God's promise to Abraham include the Israeli Raelians? I'm thinking less and less that it does. I've heard many people talk about the reestablishment of the nation of Israel in 1948 as a fulfillment of biblical prophecy, but does that mean all modern Israeli's are God's chosen people? And if not, then why suggest 1948 had any significance? I'm just as excited to look for possible signs of the end times as the next guy, but I think we need to avoid letting that enthusiasm compromise sound interpretation of scripture and systematic theology. The context of Rom 11 and its reference to Isaiah and Jeremiah give no indication that Paul is talking about physical people but more likely that Jeremiah's "new covenant" replaces the Abrahamic covenant by grafting in Christians and excluding those who reject it - Jews included. Paul seems pretty clear in his rebuke of Jews who think they have an automatic place in the kingdom by their lineage alone. No, it seems to me if we read the text for what it really is, there's no room to assume every citizen of Israel gets a free pass unless they accept the terms of the new covenant (with faith like that which saved Abraham himself - see Heb 11). I hope that Paul is telling us that all of Israel will convert to a true belief in Christ when he says "all of Israel will be saved," but it would contradict God's nature for him to force unrepentant, unbelieving, pagans kicking and screaming into his presence to worship him and reign with him forever. I'm still uncommitted in my eschatology, but I do think this provides a strong case for Amillennialism.
Perhaps the most troubling part about this story is that the Raelian mega-orgy made the headlines, not because it was planned in the first place, but because it was cancelled. The shock reported by the papers was not over the sexual perversity but that organizers caved in to "public pressure." What does this say about our modern world? Instead of anticipating end times, maybe we should ask if we're already there.