Remnant (sha’ar)

To be remnant means “to remain” or “to be left over.” A remnant is what survives after a catastrophe. In Ezra, the word frequently refers to those Israelites who survived the Exile and returned to resettle the Promised Land (9:8). The prophets use the word to speak not only of a group of Israelites who survived a particular calamity but to those Israelites who remained faithful to God (Amos 5:14, 15). The concept of the remnant is central to Isaiah, who prophesies that the Root of Jesse, the Messiah, would one day gather the remnant of Israel from all the nations, even attracting some Gentiles to Himself (Is. 11:10, 11, 16). The remnant therefore becomes a powerful OT theme of covenant faithfulness and salvation, for in sparing His people God maintained a nation through whom all the world would be blessed (Gen. 12:3).



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