Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Israel or the Church?

Are There One or Two God Instituted Faiths On Earth?

Q: Yisrael never tried to keep Torah (Divine Instructions) in order to be 'saved'. That is pure christian theology. The nation of Yisrael was chosen by God to be His People. The Torah was given to teach them how God's nation is supposed to live. Exo 4:22-23 and Hosea 11:1,4,8 show how Yisrael was already God's son before Messiah came.

Did Paul teach that believers in Messiah are separate from Yisrael and so there are two faiths? Read carefully Romans 11:16-24. The wild olive branch (non-Jewish believers) grafted into Yisrael, not becoming a "spiritual" Israel. The grafted-in branch is to partake from the Olive Tree and its sap, not make up its own tree.

A : The first point which you said that the law was not given in order to be saved is true, provided the one who does the law try their best to keep the law first until they find themselves as hopeless sinners who need the salvation of God through Jesus
(Rom 2:13; Matt 19:16-22). The law was given to make people knowledgeable of sin and to keep them from transgression until Jesus comes (Rom 3:20; Gal 3:19). The law was not given for people to receive the life of God, but Jesus came to give grace and truth through which we receive the life of God within us (Gal 3:21-22; John 1:17; 10:10). Keeping the law and believing in the grace cannot go together, they are situated and set in the opposite direction of each other (Rom 11:6). For those who work to live the life of righteousness and try to justify themselves based on it will later find, that all that they did for God has created a debt on the part of God's side to pay them to evaluate their works. But any man's work when evaluated by God is said to be equal to filthy rags of no value spiritually (Isa 64:6). To a holy God, either the righteousness that He expects for man should be either 100% or is considered as equal to nothing at all (1 Peter 1:16). God is perfect and He expects us to be perfect even without single sin in the whole of our life (James 2:10). In other words, we cannot be 20, 40, 60, 80 or even 99 percentage righteous and expect God to qualify us with a pass mark to enter heaven. We have to be 100% righteous to enter heaven. So Jesus as a sinless substitute whose score of 100% righteousness is substituted for us, we enter heaven because of asking Jesus' score to be consiered as our score to qualify us to heaven (Matt 3:15; 2 Cor 5:12). Hence this dangerous false religious attitude to work our own righteous score for qualifying to enter heaven only leads people to hell as God is not a debtor to any man (Rom 4:6). The Law [i.e. Torah] was given for the people of God to learn the ways of God to live, but learning the ways of God and living according to the commandments of God is not an option but a mandatory command. If any will try to keep it they will be blessed or else they will be cursed (Deut 28). God claiming Israel as His son means God has the rights over them because of His covenant made with their fathers are binding upon them and also because He redeemed them from the slavery of Egypt (Exo 3:13-17; 4:22-23; Hos 11:1, 4, 8). Just living in the land of Israel inside the nation did not qualify them to be sons of God, but those who kept the law got justified (Gen 17:7-13; Rom 2:13). The bottom line is, God saved these Israelites based on their faith and all others who claimed themselves as God's children just because they were born as physical descendents were rejected by Jesus Himself as wicked through their own faithless actions (John 8:37-44).

The moment the nation of Israel rejected their Messiah Jesus, the kingdom of God was taken away from them and was given to the the Church which was to come
(Matt 21:43). Jesus Himself has told that the kingdom of God will return to them as a nation only when they accept Jesus as their Messiah at His Second Coming (Matt 23:38-39). So the Church is God's plan foreordained before the foundation of the world (1 Peter 1:20; Matt 16:18-19), to spread His spiritual kingdom in all the world (Matt 28:18-20). The Church did not replace the nation of Israel spiritually, but Israel as a nation was rejected until Second Coming of Messiah temporarily because of their rejection of the true Messiah Jesus who was sent by God and Church as a spiritual nation was put in to effective spiritual rulership of God through out the entire earth (Gal 6:15-16). We see Paul saying to the Jewish people as a nation, that the Church as a wild olive tree was grafted in to cultivated olive tree of God's kingdom covenant and promises (Eph 2:11-12), as Israel as a nation was taken out of it temporarily until the Second Coming time in which they will again be grafted in to the cultivated olive tree of God's renewed covenant and promises with them through the Messiah Jesus (Rom 11:24-27). God did this intentionally so that the Gentile Church would benefit and multiply spiritually like the stars in the sky through His mercies for the days the nation of Israel enjoyed His promises to Abraham to multiply them like the sand of the seashore physically (Gen 13:16; 15:5), so that there can be an equality for both the Jews and Gentiles (Rom 11:28, 30-33). Now the Church consist of both Jews and Gentiles who have faith in Jesus Christ, there is no difference because Christ is all in all (Gal 3:28; Col 3:11). Church is beyond race, religion, color, education, economic status and national boundary. It is a spiritual nation that is set supernaturally in all nations by the power of the Holy Spirit. At the time of Second Coming of Jesus, the whole of the nation of Israel will be saved spiritually in a day and will be grafted in to the cultivated olive tree of the millenium covenantal promise of God which will be based on the New Covenant of the Church (Heb 8:7-13). So there are no two faiths now, but only one faith of the New Covenant. But as the time of the Second Coming is at hand, God is preparing a glorious Church and slowly opening the eyes of the Jewish brethren to accept Jesus as their Messiah. The Church will be raptured after the mid-point of the abomination of desolation and will rule the earth with Jesus from the New Jerusalem, whereas the nation of Israel which will be revived by the Lord and will become a blessing to the whole world as Jesus Himself will reside and rule along with the Church! In that day ten Gentile men will grasp the sleeve of a Jewish man seeking the blessing of the Messiah of Israel (Zech 8:23). In time of the Millenial rule of the Messiah, Israel as a nation will again become both physical and spiritual blessing to the whole world. Praise the Lord!


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