There is a very tender part in the human body, called the apple of the eye. Try to touch anyone’s apple. They will immediately close their eyes and shed tears. This part of our bodies works constantly, as long as we are awake. Now, God also has eyes, and there are apparently Apple of Eyes in Him too. And since He never slumbers nor sleeps, anyone who looks into His eyes, will always see that Apple.
“For this is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘After the Glorious One has sent me against the nations that have plundered you – for whoever touches you touches the apple of His eye’ ” (Zec. 2:8).
Who is He saying it to?
To Israel. So… when you touch the apple of God’s eye, when you try to touch the nation of Israel, you cause Him to shed tears.
My question to you is: how do you approach the nation of Israel and her children? And what kind of tears do you bring into God’s eyes when you do that? Are they tears of joy or grief? Will you touch His apple in order to restore it, bless, assist, support? Or will you touch it in pride, thinking you can do better than this mischievous wife who had turned her back on her Husband?
My personal appeal to you
As an Israeli who follows Yeshua, I want to ask you to look at Israel from a new point. Not as the rebellious nation with the stiff neck, who betrayed her Redeemer who walked in her midst (don’t we all do that to our Lord so often, in spite of the grace He has showed us?). Not as a western democratic nation in the midst of a third world (do all of us walk constantly in the light of what God has shown us just yesterday? How many times did He take us to the mountaintop, changed in front of our eyes and showed us His glory, but once we go back to routine, to the valley down bellow where real life is, we go back to our old habits and forget the pillar of fire we had just seen?), and not as a martial empire, equipped with mighty weapons that can destroy her enemies and therefore do not justify the way she treats a conquered people.
All of us are capable of turning our back on the Lord who has saved us and gave His life for us. All of us are capable of rebellion and fornication. But don’t we want God to restore us to Himself? Do we want Him to say, “Enough! Too many times! You are going to the diaspora now, and I am going to look for another bride in another nation”?
No! And He hadn’t done that to Israel as well. His covenant with her is everlasting. If God’s covenant with my people ended, than the Gentiles have no roots, nothing to lean on, and no reason to believe He will not forsake them either. For the Gentiles to be forgiven and restored, they have to believe the same God is forgiving and restoring Israel as well. Paul asks:
“Has God cast away His people Israel?” (Rom. 11:1). And than answers, “God has not cast away His people” (v. 2). “Israel stumbled only to provoke jealousy and bring salvation to the Gentiles. Did they stumble so as to fall beyond recovery? Not at all! Rather, because of their transgression, salvation has come to the Gentiles to make Israel envious. But if their transgression means riches for the world, and their loss means riches for the Gentiles, how much greater riches will their full inclusion bring! I am talking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch as I am the apostle to the Gentiles, I take pride in my ministry in the hope that I may somehow arouse my own people to envy and save some of them. For if their rejection brought reconciliation to the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?” (v. 11-15).
Thank you, Paul, for not ending Romans with chapter 10.