In the Kingdom Parable of the Dragnet, Jesus shows the two sides of salvation. We often receive a common objection from the Dispensational community that objects against God’s banishment of the Jewish nation (covenantally speaking) in the A.D. 70 destruction. In other words, they want to know how “all Israel” is saved if the majority of the nation was destroyed in the Roman invasion of Judea.
All Israel Is Not All the Fleshly Nation
Paul writes that the “children of the flesh” i.e. those born of Abraham‘s physical lineage are not what constitute the “seed” of Abraham. (9:6-8) Rather, the children of “promise” are counted for the the seed. “And if you are Christ’s then are you Abraham’s seed and heirs according to the promise.” (Gal. 3:29). Romans chapter 4 and Galatians chapter 3 are good chapters to study along with Romans 9.
Thus, to save all Israel does not mean to save all the “fleshly” nation through a blood line, but to save the “spiritual” nation through a “faith line” through Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 2:9).
Salvation Has Never Been About Everyone
In every example of salvation, beginning with the flood, God saves the remnant while the majority are destroyed. Consider the following:
- The world destroyed in Noah’s day, but a remnant of eight souls were saved.
- The cities of Sodom and Gomorroh were destroyed, but God saved a remnant with Lot’s family.
- The Egyptians were destroyed, but God saved a remnant from Egypt, the mixed multitude
- Israel reached the promised land but not before an entire generation died out under judgment
- Assyrian captivity left a remnant in the land
- Babylonian captivity left a remnant in the land
- Destruction of Jerusalem left a remnant while the majority of the nation were destroyed.
So, God has not deviated from any well establish plan when he saves a remnant from among fleshly Israel, i.e. those who believe in Jesus Christ.
Kingdom Parable of the Dragnet
Jesus warned the Jews through the parable of the dragnet that not all of them would be saved.
“Again, the kingdom of hevaen is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered some of every kind, which, when it was full, they drew to shore; and thy sat down and gethered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away.
So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come forth, separate the wicked from among the just, and cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth.” (Matt. 13:47-50).
The point is therefore well illustrated in the parabolic message. The sea represents the Jewish world. God would gather in all, but he would separate the good from the bad, just as a fisherman does with his net, discarding the unusable and undesirable and keeping that which was worthy.
The end of the age points to A.D. 70 and is proof-positive that not all fleshly Israel was saved. Those who rejected the New Covenant fell under covenant judgment and were banished from the presence of the Lord.