GENTILES OWE A DEBT OF GRATITUDE TO ISRAEL

While I do not embrace the theology of Christian Zionism, I also reject the ideology of many who fight so rigourously in opposition against it.

The New Testament is not a “stop gap” for the rebellious house of Israel. Nor is it an intermission in God’s dealings with Israel while he saves the Gentiles,  wherein afterwards he take care of his unfinished business with the Jews.

On the contrary, the New Testament is the continuation of God’s relationship with the people of Israel. Never once will you read that the New Covenant was given to the Gentiles. Instead, it was given to the house of Israel and the house of Judah in fulfilment of God’s promise through the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 31:31-34; Hebrews 8:8-13).

Previously Gentiles were grafted into the covenant given to Abraham’s descendants under Moses and the Law, and Gentiles are grafted into God’s covenant given to them in Christ. God has not changed his divine order. The New Covenant established with the blood of Jesus is patterned after the Old.

In Romans 11, Paul cleary states that those who are Israelites in the flesh are the branches by nature. Those among them who believe the gospel, remain as branches in their own tree. Those who reject the gospel through unbelief are cut off from thier tree.

The branches by nature (the house of Israel and Judah) were cultivated by God. The Gentiles were not. Yet God, in his mercy, has taken those who were not cultivated by him (the Gentiles), and grafted them in with those who were cultivated by him (the Israelites). In this manner, God has chosen to save all who believe.

Those among the Jews (the branches by nature) who believe the gospel remain as branches in their own tree. Those who reject the gospel through unbelief are cut off from their tree.

Gentiles who believe in Christ are grafted into this tree, which is Israel’s tree.

It is within this context that Paul tells the saved Gentiles not to booast against the branches which were cut off, because God is able to graft them back into thier own tree if they will no longer abide in unbelief.

Now, in the 15th chapter of Romans Paul says, “But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.” ~ v. 25

The saints in Jerusalem during Paul’s day is a reference to Jewish believers living in Jerusalem. There may a have been a few Gentiles sprinkled in, but predominatley Jerusalem was occupied by Jews.

Paul then says, For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem. ~ v. 26

The Christians in Macedonia and Achaia were Gentiles who wanted to help thier Jewish brethren in Jerusalem.

Now notice what Paul says next:

It hath pleased them verily; and their debtors they are. For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister unto them in carnal things. ~ Romans 15:27

Notice the use of the words “their spiritual things.” This is a reference to the blessing of the salvation and covenant in Christ that Gentiles now partake of, and Paul calls it “their (Israel’s) spiritual things.”

According to the apostle Paul, Gentiles are grafted into Israel’s tree, and are debtors to them because of this very thing. It is wrong to boast against the branches, for though many among the Jews are still are in unbelief, the covenant God gave in Christ came through their ancestors, and in this manner, salvation is of the Jews. ~ John 4:22

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s