Dispensationalists consistently emphasize that God made promises to the Jews, and these promises must be fulfilled for the Jews.
This raises the question: Who are these Jews who will inherit the promises?
Dispensationalists insist that a Jew is someone who is ethnically descended from Abraham through Isaac and Jacob. Blood alone defines Israel.
This raises the question: Is Israel defined by matrilineal descent (through the mother) or by patrilineal descent (through the father)?
In my previous post, I demonstrated that matrilineal descent alone is an invalid way to define Israel/Jew. This eliminates Boaz, Obed, and technically, even Judah, from Israel because their mothers were not Jewish.
What about patrilineal descent?
This seems to make more sense. All genealogies in the Bible trace the male line. The promises were given to males and renewed with males. The male descendents were circumcised. Patrilineal descent seems more Biblical.
However, patrilineal descent alone is insufficient to define Israel/Jew because of one obvious exception: Jesus.
If being a Jew is defined by one’s father, then Jesus is not Jewish because his Father is not Jewish.
As Archie Bunker once retorted when reminded that Jesus was Jewish: “Yes, but only on his mother’s side.”
This one enormous exception means that patrilineal descent alone cannot be used to define Israel/Jew.