Thursday, February 3, 2022

Is the Church Israel? | Session 4

To make the Scriptures say that the church is spiritual or true Israel requires three things from those who are doing it. First, they must deny the precise fulfillment of prophecy given specifically to Israel. Second, they must reject the significance of God's separation of Israel from the Gentiles. Third, they must ignore the teaching of Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery to Paul. Yet, the Bible makes it abundantly clear that what was revealed to Paul was not made known unto the sons of men before him.

Paul makes this abundantly clear throughout his writings. In Galatians 1:11-12, But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ. In Ephesians 3:2-4, If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward: How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words, Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ). In Romans 2:16, In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel. In Romans 16:25, Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began. In Galatians 1:15-17, But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace, To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood: Neither went I up to Jerusalem to them which were apostles before me; but I went into Arabia, and returned again unto Damascus. And also in Galatians 2:2, And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain. And since it was only revealed to Paul, nothing in the Scriptures before Paul could possibly have been referring to the Body of Christ as we know it today. 

It was only to Paul that it was revealed that in this current dispensation of grace, salvation was to be offered to both Jew and Gentile purely on the merits of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ apart from the law (Galatians 3:28). 

Therefore, since salvation is now offered freely apart from the law, there is no way for the law to bring about righteousness. Our righteousness today comes by faith in Jesus Christ alone. Paul wrote in Romans 3:21-24, But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: 

Instead of becoming part of Israel, Paul says that we have become a new creature called the body of Christ in Ephesians 2:15, Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace. Out of two groups, Jews and Gentiles, Christ has made a new man and the agency for salvation. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new (2 Corinthians 5:17). 

As a matter of fact, Paul wrote that we do not know any man after the flesh today  in 2 Corinthians 5:16, Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more. Obviously, that is not merely talking about people we know walking around today. Instead, he is saying that the ministry of Christ, while he was in the flesh and walking this earth, had nothing to do with us, but everything to do with the nation of Israel. We only know the resurrected Christ as revealed through the Apostle Paul.

In conclusion, the teaching of spiritual Israel is dangerous, it is not the result of a literal reading of the Scriptures and it hinders far too many from recognizing the important truths for this present dispensation of grace in which we live.

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