Post Number: 147
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 1:30 pm: || |
My Mum posted this text to "prove" that the Christian church is Spiritual Israel. This came up in a question of Replacement Theology.
Galatians 3: 26-29.
For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. AND IF YOU ARE CHRIST'S, THEN YOU ARE ABRAHAM'S SEED, AND HEIRS ACCORDING TO THE PROMISE."
What are your thoughts on this useage?
I'm still mulling it over and wanted everyones opinion.
Post Number: 34
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 1:38 pm: || |
It's interesting to see people who are Christians who say that the Jews still have a special place in God's eyes (as in different from the rest of us). If there is a new covenant, like the one God made with Abraham, then why would the old covenant apply to the Jews still? Jesus fulfilled it completely.
Post Number: 804
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 1:39 pm: || |
Abraham was not called and counted righteous after he was circumcised, but before. And, having not been a party to the Sinaitic covenant given 400 years later (Deut 5:2), and not being a child of Israel (Jacob), Abraham was not a Jew, nor an Israelite. He was a Gentile.
Paul elsewhere refers to us as "the Israel of God", and children of the Jerusalem above, but context shows he means this to contrast with the Jerusalem/Israel on earth in that we are parties to a different covenant based on grace, not law. This is the opposite of the SDA meaning.
Post Number: 148
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 1:41 pm: || |
Post Number: 1724
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 4:27 pm: || |
Hurray, here is Brent, the man who can say a lot in a few words. I've been missing you.
Now, this may be related or not, if not and you want to start another thread, fine with me. But that verse about Abraham, Israel, the church makes me think. What I hear is that the church is a parenthesis between Israel (church) Israel, but this verse seems to be saying that Israel is a parenthesis Abraham (Israel) Church because the church seems to be the heir of Abraham, not Israel.
Hmmm. What is it?
Post Number: 157
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 6:34 pm: || |
I always wondered why is when we read Gal 3:28--
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
The typical inclination in Adventism was to say see we are "spiritual Israel" thus we observe the Jewish law and sabbath. I didn't hear anyone say, GREAT we can be like the Gentiles and be free from the requirements and obligations of the law.
Since there is neither Jew no Greek we were could be either but the compunction was to run to the law and not to Grace; very one sided.
(Message edited by wiredog on April 11, 2011)
Post Number: 149
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 8:47 pm: || |
It's that veil that comes over their eyes since like the Pharisees the Adventists are so... enamored with Moses and the Law.
And not the one who fulfilled the Law...and gives us Grace and rest.
Post Number: 740
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 8:58 pm: || |
Nowhere does that text mention Isreal, spiritual or otherwise.
It says Abraham's seed. Abraham had two sons. Both had promises associated with them.
We could also interpretet the text to mean we are spiritual muslims.
We have been brainwashed, since Cradle Role, to believe in "spiritual Isreal". Remember the song, "Father Abraham"?
Spiritual Isreal, if it exists, would still be under the old law and covenant. I guess if someone wants to be part of that, there is no stopping them.
Post Number: 150
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 9:05 pm: || |
How true...it is their choice.
No matter how many times I try and warn them nicely that mixing Law and Grace alienates them from Christ they just don't get it.
You can't put new wine in old wineskins.
Post Number: 39
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 9:32 pm: || |
Most Christian churches sing "Father Abraham". I'm not meaning any argument by that. I remember going to Chicago with a Youth for Christ group. We walked down the streets of Chicago and sang Father Abraham. With all the motions too. It was fun. When the part says "had many sons" I like to add "and daughters!".
On topic here though. Where does the covenant that Abraham made with God come into play? Is that considered the same covenant that God made with Israel? I don't believe the covenant with Israel is binding on me, but how do we fit into Abraham's? Just as his seed or is that just Jews? Seems kinda odd because Jews have never been more than the stars in the sky. (I wasn't paying attention in some of my classes at the seminary. You would be surprised. There are some people there who do teach more than just Adventist beliefs.)
Post Number: 12497
|Posted on Monday, April 11, 2011 - 10:30 pm: || |
God's covenant with Abraham preceded Israel. It is an unconditional covenant because God made it with Himself. Abraham was put into a deep sleep (Gen. 15), and a smoking furnace and a burning lamp moved between the pieces of the sacrifice which Abraham laid out. Abraham was not permitted to participate.
God promised Abraham seed, land, and blessing...and this promise was not based on any human promises. It was only God's promise, and His word cannot be broken.
The covenant with Israel was conditional; it was made between God and Israel, and they promised to do everything God said. But, as Hebrews points out, their promises were weak; they couldn't be kept because they were mortal men. So the Mosaic covenant was conditional: blessings for obedience, curses (diseases, drought, and dispersion) for disobedience. This conditional covenant ended in Jesus' blood.
The New Covenant articulated in Jeremiah 31:31-33 and Ezekiel 36:24-25 is also unconditional. God unilaterally promised Israel that He would make a new covenant with them and would write His law on their hearts. Ezekiel even says He would put His spirit in their hearts. Jesus introduced this covenant clearly at the Passover Last Supper when he told his disciples that from then on they were to drink that cup in remembrance of Him, and it was "the new covenant in my blood".
The New Covenant is unconditional. It is not based on any mortal human promises but is made and kept between the Father and the Son who represents humanity as our Substitute. Believers are ushered into this covenant by Christ's blood, and when they are in Christ, His promises and righteousness cover them.
Paul explained in Ephesians 3:9 that he was the one appointed to explain the "administration of the mystery" of the new covenant to everyone--not just to the gentiles. The mystery of the new covenant is that gentiles as well as Jews become heirs of the promises made to Abraham when they are ushered into the new covenant through grace by faith in the Lord Jesus. The fourth chapter of Galatians explains clearly that those who are in Christ are heirs of the promises made to Abraham BEFORE the Mosaic covenant was made. Romans 4 and 5 also explain this mystery. Ephesians 2 further enlarges on this fact.
Romans 9 through 11, moreover, explain that God has not abandoned His promises made to the Jews. Paul explains in Romans 11 that the promises were made to "the fathers", and if the root is holy, so are the branches, and if the "first piece of dough is holy, the lump is also" (Rom.11:16). The patriarchs are the root and "first piece of dough".
Paul reminds his gentile readers that the root supports them; they do not support the root, and if the natural branches that were broken off for unbelief do not persist in unbelief (the Jews), they can be grafted back in. And if they the grafted-in wild branches become arrogant against the natural branches, they are to remember that they can also be cut off.
Paul really states clearly that a day is coming when ethnic Israelites, the Jews, who have been "hardened in part" until the full number of gentiles has come in (Rom 11:25) will again be "unhardened" to be receptive to receiving the Lord Jesus.
The New Covenant is the New Covenant...it was a promise made to the Jews, and God surprised them by grafting the gentiles into it. But God is still going to fulfill His promises to the Jews. Romans 11:11-15:
So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. 12 Now if their trespass means riches for the world, and if their failure means riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their full inclusion mean! Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry 14 in order somehow to make my fellow Jews jealous, and wthus save some of them. 15 For if their rejection means the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance mean but life from the dead? 16 If the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, so is the whole lump, and if the root is holy, so are the branches.
God's promises to Israel for seed, land, and blessing have not yet been entirely fulfilled. These promises were not part of the conditional Mosaic covenant but were part of the Abrahamic covenant. Yes, the promised Seed has come, and blessing has come to the whole earth, but the promise of Land has never been fulfilled, only begun.
In 1 Samuel 17 God made another unconditional covenant to David that a king from his line would always sit on the throne and would rule over the nations. That promise had both spiritual and physical implications. Spiritually, Jesus is the King of kings, but He had not yet ruled in power physically over the nations.
Revelation 20 describes the millennium when Jesus will rule over the nations. Isaiah, Ezekiel, and other OT prophets also describe a future rule of a King ruling over the nations from Jerusalem, and those prophecies do not describe the new heaven and the new earth, although that reality is also in view in some of them.
At any rate, while there is still mystery about how it will all work, God will, according to Paul and according to John in Revelation, still keep His promises to Israel. He will not do these things because Israel deserves them but because God promised, and He cannot break His word. Nor will He keep these promises to Israel but leave the church out of it.
On the contrary, the church will reign with Christ (Revelation 20, etc). Nor is God going to save Israel any differently than He saves the church. Jews have to believe in the Lord Jesus to be saved just as gentiles do.
There's definitely mystery here...as in things that are as yet unrevealed...but the promises are clear. The church does not replace Israel, nor are Jews automatically included in God's eternal kingdom. Everyone who enters the kingdom of God has to believe in the Lord Jesus.
Post Number: 805
|Posted on Tuesday, April 12, 2011 - 11:11 am: || |
The Church is viewed as "the Israel of God" in Galatians, and has been grafted into the promise given to literal Israel. The New Testament refers to the church as Christ's Bride in the same way that the Old Testament refers to Israel as YHWH's Bride. But where Adventists and Covenant Theologians fail, is this: If there is a new "Israel of God" that contrasts with physical Israel, then it would have to be according to a New Covenant that replaces the Old Covenant of Sinai. Otherwise, it would not be possible to call the church "The Israel of God." The Church as the Israel of God doesn't mean that we are under the same covenant, but that just as the Jews were God's chosen people two thousand years before the Messiah, so now the Jewish and Christian believers in Jesus are God's ultimate Chosen people. In fact, we were chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world, and our covenant was promised to Abraham before the Sinaitic Covenant was given to physical/genetic Israel. It is not that the church is "spiritual Israel," but that literal Israel was merely a temporal shadow pointing towards the true, eternally Chosen who by grace were granted faith in the Messiah.
So if there is new chosen people (Gentile and Jewish believers in Jesus), then there has to be a New Covenant to replace the Old Covenant, or else the church could not claim to be God's Chosen in Christ. Consequently, the Old Covenant, with its several Sabbaths and Holy Days and punishments and so on, has no jurisdiction over the new Chosen people. To claim that the new Chosen have to keep the covenant of the old Chosen, is to claim that there is no New Covenant, and conseequently that Christ has died in vain. It is blasphemy.
(Message edited by bskillet on April 12, 2011)
Post Number: 1156
|Posted on Wednesday, April 13, 2011 - 10:07 am: || |
Thanks, Colleen and Bskillet! Your explanations are so yummy! Yummy because it tastes good to my spirit to digest God's word. You both did a wonderful job of serving the Word attractively and nutritiously.