Supersedure: Did The Christian Church Replace Israel?
upersedure is a twenty dollar word, found in most dictionaries, that is related to the word Supercede -- a much more commonly used term. Webster's famous dictionary rather succinctly tells us these words mean
"...to make obsolete, inferior, or outmoded; to make void, override" -- Webster's 3rd New International.
In a religious context, most people will tell you the idea of the Christian church, seen in the New Testament, inheriting the primary birthright and blessing promised to Israel in the Old Testament, is something called Replacement Theology -- i.e. the "church" theoretically replaced Israel in God's plan of calling out a chosen people.
Simultaneously, those same people will tell you it is impossible for this to occur, because God made unconditional promises to redeem Israel, promises which were not dependent upon the ancient family's fidelity to the LORD. Thus, a huge number of people believe that God will still redeem Israel, because He always keeps His promises. Such people rather conveniently forget about promises to judge Israel if they turn away from Him -- especially those which say His longsuffering does have an end:
"The end is come upon my people of Israel; I will not again pass by them any more" -- Amos 8:2
To approach the truth of this rather tricky issue, we might start with a couple of basic questions. When Jesus Christ, in the New Testament, told Israel's people "you must be born again," was He telling the absolute truth?
We may further ask if, when Jesus said "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me," was this an incontrovertible truth?
The answer to both questions is an emphatic YES! Thus, the requirements of Jesus Christ Supercede the requirements for salvation under the Old Covenant.
It is at this point the issue becomes subtle, and very easily misunderstood. One group, what could be called the "Replacement" camp, teaches the "Church" replaced Israel, but this is a distinctive, and deadly error. The other group teaches the "Church" cannot replace Israel, for God's promises will eventually be fulfilled, and all Israel will be saved. They are in another distinctive, but also deadly, error.
In other words, the diabolical system of the Dialectic, in which the Devil sets up two opposing perspectives, is being applied to Christianity and religion, just as it is in every other conceivable construct. Without belaboring the issue of the broader subject of the Dialectic (at Christian Media we call the system DragonSpeak), thinking people everywhere have begun to recognize the tactic has been used for ages in multiple arenas. Its most obvious application is the present American political quagmire wherein the Democrats war with the Republicans every 4 years, in a contrived shell game in which both factions are actually united with an unseen agenda.
Back on the Christian battlefield, a key error was made a very long ago when both Replacement systems, and Israel-First factions agreed that an entity they both dubbed the "Church," exists at all. This is where the term Supersedure enters into the equation, because it is a third option -- and it is the truth which is obscured through the Dialectical dance the Devil has been orchestrating for such a long time.
Although most of the Israel-Firsters continue to misidentify the concept of Supersedure as "Replacement," there is a critical, and substantive difference, so those who intentionally misidentify this phenomena are what Webster's calls liars. Presumably, we don't have to remind the reader where all the liars end up on the last day.
The fact is, the so called "Church" does not exist as an entity apart from Israel at all, for the translated word is not a proper noun, and is simply a generic term for those assembled around a belief system -- and the underlying Scriptural word used for that "assembly" has historically been used to describe Christian groups, as well as those who are decidedly non-Christian.
In the Greek original, for instance, the same word has been used to describe those who are assembled as fans at a sporting event! Although some sports fans are downright religious in their fervor for a particular team, the elevation of the word "church" (meaning assembly) is a gross distortion which occurred as a way to twist the facts. We might ask the reader, who has been known to historically twist the facts, Jesus or Satan?
To put this issue in perspective, it is possible for something, or someone, to Supercede another without actually "replacing" them. This is known as Supersedure. In short, the Christians, in following Jesus Christ, have become Israel, even as God redefined the very concept of Israel under the New Covenant.
In order to illustrate this profound truth, I'll offer a story from my own personal history. Years ago, as a young bachelor, I had a couple of roommates. One of them had a telephone installed in the apartment where we lived, and we split the bill. One day, we got a notice from the phone company about a new calling plan where we were going to get unlimited long distance for a flat monthly fee, and it was a great program that would save us money.
At the same time, the roommate suddenly decided to leave the area and, although he left the telephone service connected, he stuck me with the bill. As I needed the telephone, I paid the entire bill, and I took over the monthly payments for the existing connection to the existing telephone number. I also got the new flat rate long distance calling plan.
After some months, I noticed that, even though the phone bill was reduced under the new calling plant, it still had the name of my old roommate, so I called the phone company and asked them to change the name. They said they could do that, if I complied with the appropriate rules (a deposit was involved), and they said the process was called Supersedure -- the identical term addressed in the present work. The good news was, I didn't have to start from scratch as the phone was already installed, so a Supersedure was certainly better than disconnecting the phone and starting over.
After some paperwork, the bills started arriving with my name, and I simply continued as I always had. A key distinction is in recognizing that I never lost my connection to the switchboard that kept my telephone going. Furthermore, I had the same phone number. I didn't even have to replace the telephone itself -- everything continued without interruption.
From the phone company's perspective, the connection between my house and their central system never changed. The account was actually the same account. The only thing that changed was the person who was given the benefits of the connection. I'm still in their database under customer, just as the former roommate was previously in their database under customer. Indeed, it could not be said the former roommate is now under "customer," because I am their client now -- so from the phone company's point of view, the choice was made by the former customer to relinquish his rights under the connection agreement, while I preferred to continue the newer, revised rights (the new long distance plan), under the procedure known as Supersedure.
Thus, although I'm a different customer than the former, I Superseded his position as the recipient of the service because the circumstances changed. I did not actually replace the connection between the house and the phone company, I Superceded the former roommates position by complying with the requirements to maintain the connection.
This is, by the way, why salvation had to be offered to Israel before the Gentiles, because they had the existing connection, so God gave the physical Israelites the option of continuing their connection with Him under the terms of the New Covenant of Jesus Christ. Many Israelites (and Jews) chose to do exactly that, but many others refused to continue with the LORD's new plan. At the same time, as part of the new revised plan, God opened the door to the Gentiles to be grafted into the connection previously enjoyed by the house of Israel.
Incidentally, that new revised flat rate long distance calling plan was so popular that the phone discontinued the old plan altogether. What was really interesting was the fact that the original roommate came back years later, and even though he had ripped me off for the old phone bill when he left town, I harbored no animosity -- just a healthy caution about dealing with him.
Furthermore, he wanted to move back in as a roommate, under our original understanding, but things had changed dramatically for me, so I politely refrained from that opportunity. He even went to the phone company and demanded he receive the original telephone service, with the original phone number (under the old calling plan), because he's now changed his mind and really wants it back! Of course, the phone people said not only would it be illegal for us to do that, the old calling plan was inferior, and has now been permanently discontinued.
Finally, my former roommate was willing to accept the new calling plan, so he came back to me again, and said "I still have my original rights, and you should give me the phone, the number, and even my old room back -- and then I'll be satisfied." I suppose I'm free to let him move back in, and even give him the telephone, but there's one big problem.
I've really come to depend on that telephone connection.
-- James Lloyd