Who are the true Jews?

As if there wasn’t enough confusion from Christians who think the church has replaced Israel, we now have a whole new brand of error arising with the “Hebrew Israelites” who believe it is they who are the true Jews.

Although the (deeply antisemitic) cult has gained a lot of traction in the wake of Ye West’s recent ravings, the movement has been steadily growing for some time now. The claim is that the kind of Jews Hitler was determined to extinguish are the “synagogue of Satan” and not really Jewish at all. Hitler would kill anyone with a Jewish grandparent, and as such Israel welcomes everyone in that category to come and live in the Jewish state. But these are not the real descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob apparently—rather it is the so-called “Hebrew Israelites”, mostly of African heritage, who are the true Jews.


It’s astonishing how quick some are to believe that Jewish people are not really Jewish by descent, and that they are not related to the twelve tribes of Israel. Shamefully even Christians are falling for such ideas. But these lies have been thoroughly debunked in many places, including here on this site, where we deal with the question, ARE TODAY’S JEWS GENETICALLY DESCENDED FROM THE BIBLICAL ISRAELITES?  Similarly, Mottel Baleston breaks down the facts in this helpful and informative lecture about the true Jews, and how we know for a fact that Jewish people are indeed descendants of the twelve tribes. It was not the “Hebrew Israelites” that Hitler targeted in his demonic plans, but the Jews. Satan knows who the true Jews are, and so does God.


Along with such delusions usually come vile accusations against Jewish people: of being fundamentally evil and abandoned by God, or of being an illegitimate elite who own all the banks, control the media, and plotting world domination. If you were to come to Israel and meet the millions of Jewish people here though, you’d get a kick out of the thought that this lot is capable of fiendish plots to take over the world. “Sometimes I wish it was true!” joked one friend, bewailing the poorly-planned public transportation and long-delayed building projects. If Jewish people really did have infinite wealth and power, the State of Israel might run a lot more smoothly! And if the people of Israel did have any control over the global media, the reporting on the Jewish state would be considerably fairer if not distinctly favorable.

These accusations are simply untrue. Be aware of these libelous falsehoods which stir up the kind of resentment and hatred that Hitler capitalized upon. Children of the God of Israel must have nothing whatsoever to do with such darkness.

It may be that there are wealthy elites with too much power who are seeking to wield it over the masses (I’m looking at you, World Economic Forum) but such collectives are not characteristically “Jewish” even if a few individuals among their number may have Jewish backgrounds. We would be rightly appalled if someone drew negative conclusions about all black people just because one or two among a bad bunch happened to be black. Our ethnicity has no bearing on our righteousness or lack of it. These twisted lies come from the Father of Lies because he hates anything that God loves. And God loves the people of Israel. They are the apple of His eye. Righteousness is loving what God loves and hating what He hates. God loves Israel and hates racism.


I ask, then, has God rejected his people? By no means! For I myself am an Israelite, a descendant of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. God has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. (Romans 11:1)

Some Egyptian sisters who believed God had rejected Israel came to a profound revelation of God’s heart and plan for Israel by simply meditating on Romans 11.  They have since joined in God’s great love for His people, even at the cost of significant rejection from others around them. Romans 11 states clearly that God has not forsaken His people. Paul also reminds us all that the whole point about grace is that it does not depend upon our works, otherwise it wouldn’t be grace. Sure, Israel has been pretty sinful throughout the millennia. It’s hard to argue otherwise. There’s plenty of sin to point to in every direction. But who can point it out from a place of innocence? We are all deeply sinful, and it is by God’s radical grace that we are saved and forgiven. This applies to every child of God, and it is by this same grace that God will be faithful to His promises with Israel.

If you know much about ONE FOR ISRAEL, you’ll know that there’s a righteous remnant who love Jesus within the people of Israel. Recent research indicates there are as many as a million people of Jewish descent around the world who love Jesus! That’s more than at any point in history. But more than that, God promises He will also rescue the rest. It is part of His plan that Israel would be hardened for a season, but that ultimately, that season will come to an end.

Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,

“The Deliverer will come from Zion, he will banish ungodliness from Jacob”;
“and this will be my covenant with them when I take away their sins.”

As regards the gospel, they are enemies for your sake. But as regards election, they are beloved for the sake of their forefathers. For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. (Romans 11:25-29)

You hear that? Irrevocable. If God gives a gift, He will not take it back. If He makes a promise, He will not break it. Israel may be deeply rebellious, but they are the illustration for the world of the extraordinary grace of God. At the end of the “Time of the Gentiles”, the Deliverer, Jesus, will come again from Zion and take away the sins of Israel according to His covenant with them. This is New Testament teaching from Paul, which just repeats exactly what God has said all along.


The hatred coming against Jewish people in our days from both the left and the right of the political spectrum is leaving many Jewish people around the world feeling extremely frightened. People are having discussions about what to make of this new wave of antisemitism. It never goes away entirely, but it is rising alarmingly fast at the moment. People are wondering if it’s time to move to Israel.

“I’m the daughter of a holocaust refugee. So I’m used to antisemitism,” said one lady who had made the move to Israel. “America was always the most comfortable place for Jews. Is it still?” An Israeli realtor replied that she’s noticing lately that people from overseas are buying homes in Israel saying they need a place to run to, and many have an “always be ready to run” mentality. Some rabbis publicly recommend it from the synagogues, urging people to keep their passports up to date because you never know when you may need it. Many have relatives who narrowly escaped the Holocaust, and see the signs of serious threat in our days. Others of course millions of others didn’t make it, and their stories are ever etched in the communal consciousness.

When people scoff that “you know who’s in power when you know who you’re not allowed to criticize”, it reveals an extremely poor memory of what happened last time despising Jewish people went unchecked. Our zero tolerance for antisemitism is not due to a love of power and control, but simply a love of life. We know how Jew-hatred ends.

Some choose to stick it out in the nations where insults, vandalism, and attacks are commonplace. Instead of turning a blind eye to their ill-treatment (or worse, joining in the vitriol) those who love Jesus would better represent Him by standing with the Jewish people. Don’t ignore antisemitism when you hear it, but call it out. Let the Jewish people around you know that you see the cancer of antisemitism, that you care, and want to support them. It means a lot.


While all believers have been included into the commonwealth of Israel and the family of God, the New Testament maintains that Jew and Gentile are distinct, just as male and female are. Being Jewish is an ethnicity and a people group with a communal history of faith, even though only a minority would call themselves observant today. In the Bible, Jewish ancestry came through the paternal line. Today Jewish people consider the mother’s line the way to determine a person’s Jewishness, partly due to the Roman era where rape was commonplace and paternity hard to determine. Either way, genetically we know that all varieties and colors of Jewish people (Sephardic, Mizrachi, Ethiopian, Ashkenazi, etc.) have similar genetics to one another and much in common with the Levantine area from which they originally came. Some have the “Cohen” gene of the priests which can be traced all the way back to the Aaronic priesthood. More importantly, God sees all our genes and knows who’s who. Anyone saved by the Jewish Messiah is included in the commonwealth of Israel, but the Apostle Paul makes it clear in his letter to the Romans that Israel is Israel and the church is the church. Jesus said that He came for the “Lost sheep of the house of Israel” (Matthew 15:24) but also said there were many more sheep He wanted to bring into the fold:

I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. (John 10:16)

There is already a great overlap of the remnant of Israel and the billions of believers in the nations, but one day all Israel will be saved. There will be one bride brought before the Son of God, and a great wedding will take place.

God’s plans will come to pass, and cannot be thwarted. This is what God says is going to happen at the end of time:

“For on my holy mountain, the mountain height of Israel, declares the Lord God, there all the house of Israel, all of them, shall serve me in the land. There I will accept them, and there I will require your contributions and the choicest of your gifts, with all your sacred offerings. As a pleasing aroma I will accept you, when I bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered. And I will manifest my holiness among you in the sight of the nations. And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I bring you into the land of Israel, the country that I swore to give to your fathers. And there you shall remember your ways and all your deeds with which you have defiled yourselves, and you shall loathe yourselves for all the evils that you have committed.  And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I deal with you for my name’s sake, not according to your evil ways, nor according to your corrupt deeds, O house of Israel, declares the Lord God.” (Ezekiel 20:40-44)

This article originally appeared on One For Israel and is reposted with permission.