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Israelology: The Missing Link in Systematic Theology Hardcover – Lay Flat, 1994

4.5 out of 5 stars 41 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Thankfully someone has finally taken the Biblical material on Israel and systematized it... presented it in such a helpful form." -- George Zeller

"This book is a 'must have,' 'must read,' and 'must reference.' " -- Glenn W. Campbell, Journal of Grace Evangelical Society, Spring 1994

"This is a tremendous, masterful book on a subject which is either lightly treated or completely ignored." --The Biblical Evangelist, December 1, 1989

About the Author

Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum was Born September 26, 1943 in Russia, after his father was released from a Communist prison. Even though he is Jewish, his father was accused of being a Nazi spy when he fled Poland from Hitler. The Fruchtenbaums escaped from behind the Iron Curtain with help from the Israeli underground. They resided in Germany from 1946 to 1951, where Arnold received orthodox Jewish training. The Fruchtenbaums immigrated to Brooklyn in 1951, where they first came in contact with the American Board of Missions to the Jews (now Chosen People Ministries). At age 13, Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum became a believer in the Messiahship of Jesus. Arnold's father strongly opposed his beliefs, however; he allowed Arnold to continue associating with and learning from other Jewish believers until the family moved to Los Angeles in 1958. Once in Los Angeles, Arnold was forbidden to read the Bible, attend Christian meetings, or have anything to do with Messianic Jewish groups. Arnold, however; continued to maintain contact with Jewish believers and to walk with the Lord as best he could. Upon his graduation from High School, he was informed by his father that he would have to leave home because of his beliefs. In 1962, Arnold began undergraduate education at Shelton College. In 1966 He transferred to and graduated from Cedarville University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Hebrew and Greek. He moved to Israel that July, and studied archaeology, ancient history, historical geography, and Hebrew at the American Institute of Holy Land Studies and at the Hebrew University. In September 1967, Arnold enrolled at Dallas Theological Seminary. He also began working as a missionary with the American Board of Missions to the Jews. He graduated in 1971 with a Master of Theology degree. In June 1968, he married Mary Ann Morrow. In 1971, they moved to Israel, settling in Jerusalem. They worked with the local messianic congregation training young Israeli believers for service. His activities for Messiah drew the anger of the religious authorities in Jerusalem, finally forcing them to leave Israel in 1973. For the next two years he was a minister for the American Board of Missions to the Jews, and editor of The Chosen People. In 1976, he joined the staff of The Christian Jew Foundation as Associate Director of the largest Messianic Jewish broadcasting ministry in the world. In the summer of 1976, Arnold, along with others in Jewish missions, discussed the lack of discipleship and intensive biblical and theological training of Jewish believers. The early concepts of Ariel Ministries were born at that time. In December 1977 Ariel Ministries became a reality based on the principles of evangelism and discipleship. Arnold now serves as the director of the ministry. In 1989, Arnold completed his Ph.D. at New York University. He is the author of several books and has contributed articles in a number of books and journals. Frequently in demand as a conference speaker and teacher, he has traveled throughout Europe, Asia, Israel, and the United States, becoming intimately acquainted with the Messianic Jewish movement.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 1052 pages
  • Publisher: Ariel Ministries; Revised edition (1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0914863053
  • ISBN-13: 978-0914863052
  • Product Dimensions: 2 x 6.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #489,460 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Recommendation:
Highest Rating for believers who want to gain more insights and learned understanding into their faith, its origins and purposes.
Summary:
Dr. Fruchtenbaum's unique and very Jewish research fills a very dangerous (replacement theology) and limiting void (actually canyon) in Christian understanding and perspective. As Christians, we look at the bible through our own limited gentile eyes, and interpret everything as if it belongs specifically to us. But, Dr. Fruchtenbaum goes through the other 90% of the bible that specifically deals with Israel (the true vine, the chosen people, the people of the covenant ) and Abraham (the friend of JHWH). After all, JHWH's entire plan for mankind is through Israel. Christianity is only a temporary (but, very uniquely blessed) solution to Israel's temporary blindness (non-belief in Jesus as the Messiah).
As Paul writes "everything aforetime was written for our learning." The laws, sabbaths, history and prophecies. All of these Jewish items were written for us to learn and understand JHWH's plan and prophecies. But, this only occurs through Israel.
Review:
Dr. Fruchtenbaum's work, thoughts and writing style is logical, well-researched, deep and insightful. But, he writes so you can easily follow him and understand his subjects, arguments, and conclusions.
Dr. Fructenbaum takes the reader through the information, logic and interpretations and related verses in a manner that actually teaches the reader to improve their abilities to think (in terms of biblical interpretation). In completing this book, the reader will learn a great deal about Judaism and Christianity from the proper Jewish perspective and thought patterns.
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Format: Hardcover
Simply put, Israelology is the doctrine of Israel. It is what the Bible teaches about Israel...not what many in the Church want to call "Israel."

Most believers have at least some concept of what the Bible teaches about Israel. Unfortunately, however, such understanding is usually limited and somewhat general (if not "fuzzy") since the tendency among believers is to concentrate more heavily on other doctrines. The doctrine of Israel, it seems, is only addressed when it unavoidably intersects with other doctrines of the Bible, but even then the lack of a complete Israelology often leads to ambiguity, if not total error. Indeed, many theological fallacies can be traced to an incomplete, if not a totally inaccurate understanding of the doctrine of Israel. As Dr Fruchtenbaum clearly shows, Israelology is of no minor significance to a proper interpretation of the Bible.

In this work, Dr Fruchtenbaum presents the Israelology of four major theological systems: Covenant Postmillennialism, Covenant Amillennialism, Covenant Premillennialism, and Dispensationalism. He shows how each system's view of Israelology affects biblical interpretation; highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of each system where they exist. He finally offers his own dispensational Israelology (which I believe ought to be published on its own, as it is superb in its analysis), effectively developing this doctrine which previous systematic theologies have failed to address completely, if at all.

Included in this work are discussions on:

*** The view of Israel (past, present, and future) in the teaching of the four major theological systems.
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Format: Hardcover
Dr. Fruchtenbaum has masterfully written on the issue of Israel in systematic theology -- a topic often overlooked by Dispensationalists. His clear exegesis and well placed conclusions make for an easy read. His objectivity is also comendable. Dr. Fruchtenbaum takes about 300 pages to explain all non-dispensational perspectives. Very helpful!
There are two draw-backs to the work. First, while there is a handy scripture index in the back, there is no topical index. Since it is systematic in scope, oftentimes identical issues are discussed under different subheads. The lack of topical index in the back may have been due to the 18 page table of contents but an index in back would be very helpful in remebering where everything is located in the large, 1,100 page book.
Secondly, although this is a fabulous work, Fruchtenbaum occationally makes unguarded and hermeneutically hollow statements. For example, on page 613, refering to the three measures of meal in the Parable of the Leaven (Matt. 13:33), he writes that this passage is pointing "to the fact that Christendom develops into three main divisions: Roman Catholoicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and Protestantism." This is inconsistent with dispensational bible interpretation.
All in all, this book should be required of all Christians who are ready for a little 'meat' in their diet.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This over 1000 page volume is the result of a doctoral submission that was originally over 2000 pages. It reads easily and the print is reader friendly. Margins on each page leave room for commentary. The subject matter is thoroughly covered with contrasting views of the author's with fair treatment of differing views. The author is Dispensational, Biblical and of Jewish background writing as a Christian today. If you are looking for the most comprehensive treatment of Israel's past, present and future from a Biblical perspective, you can't do better. His treatment utilizes literal approach to the Bible as opposed to the allegorical approach used so often among liberal Protestantism and others borrowed from and adapted from Early Church writers such as Origen and Augustine. Literalism allows for accuracy while allegorical permits personal interpretation and often misuse of the meaning of plain Scripture. Literalism may seem dry at points but it doesn't sacrifice accuracy for excitement. Allegorical interpretations of Scripture have been the basis, when taken to the extreme, for anti-Semitism over the centuries. This volume avoids that by staying literal and remains faithful to Scripture and history.
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