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Israel, Why the Nation & Land are So Important in the Lives of Those who Want to be with Jesus Christ

Written by James Meadows. Posted in Uncategorised

ISRAEL

why the

NATION & LAND

are

SO IMPORTANT

in the lives

of those who want to be with

JESUS CHRIST

in

HIS KINGDOM

 

 

 

 

 

 

ISRAEL

                   The vast majority of THE BIBLE is connected with the people and land of Israel.

     How important is Israel in God’s purpose?

Jesus Christ gives an important guide when he says:

  1. a.“I am not sent but to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.” (Matthew 15:24)
  2. b.Commanding his apostles, “Go not into the way of the Gentiles, But go rather to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.” (Matthew 10:5,6)

The main focus of the teaching of Jesus and his apostles was directed to the people of Israel. The ONLY person specially commissioned by Jesus Christ to preach to the Gentiles, was Paul. (Acts 9:1-15)

Now, why are the Jews and their land so important?

God provides the answer in Exodus 4:22, where Moses is told, “Say unto Pharoah, Thus saith the LORD, Israel is my son, even my firstborn.”

Deuteronomy 14:1,2 “Ye are the children of the LORD your God. For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God, and the LORD hath chosen thee to be a peculiar people unto himself, above all the nations of the earth.”

The people of Israel are called by God’s name. (2 Chronicles 7:14, Daniel 9:19).   ‘El’ means ‘God.’

God is a God of love, so naturally he would chastise them if they were disobedient. (Hebrews 12:5-7)

They were forewarned in Leviticus 26 and Deuteronomy 28 to 30 what the various punishments would be. Deuteronomy 28:37 “And thou shalt become an astonishment, a proverb, and a byword, among all nations whether the LORD shall lead thee.” V. 64,65 “And the LORD shall scatter thee among all people. And among these nations shalt thou find no ease, neither shall the sole of thy foot have rest: but the LORD shall give thee a trembling heart, and failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind: And thy life shall hang in doubt about thee.”

However, In Deuteronomy 30:4,5 we read of God’s ultimate mercy. “If any of thine be driven out unto the utmost parts of heaven, from thence will the LORD thy God gather thee, and from thence will he fetch thee, And the LORD thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shat possess it; and he will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers.”

The same is promised in Leviticus 26, after the various warnings and punishments are given, v.44 “And yet for all that, when they be in the land of their enemies, I will not cast them away, neither will I abhor them, to destroy them utterly, and to break my covenant with them, for I am the LORD their God.”

The history of Israel has shown the goodness and severity of God and demonstrates why in Isaiah 43:3, God says, “For I am the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour: I gave Egypt for thy ransom, Ethiopia and Seba for thee.” Then in v21, “This people have I formed for myself: they shall shew forth my praise.” It would come as no surprise that God then says in Isaiah 44:8, “ye are my witnesses.”

The question that many ask is, ‘Why did God disperse the Jews in AD 70’?

The reason is twofold:                                                                                                                                                                   Firstly, So that the Jews (being His Witnesses) would ensure God’s greatness and purpose with creation would become known throughout the world, so everyone could become associated with the ‘Hope of Israel’, through Jesus Christ.                                                                                                                                                                     Secondly, As a punishment for their disobedience in rejecting God’s prophetic word, and the Messiah he had provided.                                                                                                                                                                                         

In the book of Daniel their various captivities are recorded. What is so remarkable is that whoever conquered them, ended up recognising and giving praise to the God of Israel. (Daniel 2:47, 3:28, 6:26).

Even today, the people of Israel are witnessing to God’s word in many ways! For example, God warned Israel that if they did not remove the ungodly from the Promised Land before they entered, that those that remained would be a thorn in their side for EVERMORE. Many will have heard of Samson and Delilah and David and Goliath. Both Delilah and Goliath came from the Philistine Gaza area. (Judges 16:21, 1Samuel 17:23). At the time of Jesus, Gaza had become a desert (Acts 8:26), and remained so after the Jewish dispersal. It was in 1948 when the State of Israel was re-established (in accordance with prophecy - Jeremiah 30:3, etc.), that Yassa Arafat an Egyptian came to Gaza and established the P.L.O.                      They have been a thorn in the side of Israel ever since.

God declares in Zechariah 2:8 “He that toucheth you (Israel) toucheth the apple of his eye.” To see this, one only needs to read what many proclaim to be one of the most wonderful pieces of historical literature in existence – the book of Esther.

There are so many proclamations by God throughout scriptures that state that the people of Israel would not be permanently cast off, that it beggars belief that both J.W’s and Islam preach that they will have no further part in God’s plan and purpose.   Whether they appreciate it or not, their teaching does not accord with THEIR God being a God of Love, for would a loving God cast off his son? (Exodus 4:22)    

What better rebuttal can one find than the word of God himself?                                                                 Jeremiah 33:24-26. “Considerest thou not what this people have spoken, saying, the two families which the LORD hath chosen, he hath even cast them off? Thus they have despised my people, that they should be no more a nation before them. Thus saith the LORD, If my covenant be not with day and night, and if I have not appointed the ordinances of heaven and earth; Then will I cast away the seed of Jacob, and David my servant, so that I will not take any of his seed to be rulers over the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob: for I will cause their captivity to return and have mercy upon them.”                                                                                          Psalm 94:14 “For the LORD will not cast off his people, neither will he forsake his inheritance.”      

Jeremiah 30:11 “For I am with thee, saith the LORD, to save thee: though I make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee: but I will correct thee in measure, and will not leave thee altogether unpunished.”

Isaiah 41:8,9 “ But thou, Israel, art my servant.. I have chosen thee, and not cast thee away.”

Again, in the New Testament, Romans 11:2, “God hath not cast away his people.”

God refers to the Nation of Israel as “my people” or “His people” over 150 times in The Bible!                     The following references show but a small sample, of the consistency of this Biblical teaching.                         Exodus 3:10, Leviticus 26:12,   Deuteronomy 27:9, Judges 20:2, Ruth 1:6, 1 Samuel 12:22, 2 Samuel 7:7,       1 Kings 6:13, 2 Kings 20:5, ! Chronicles 11:2, Psalm 14;4, Isaiah 1:3, Jeremiah 7:12, 31:1, Ezekiel 14:9,   Hosea 6:11, Amos 7:8, Micah 6:2, Zephaniah 2: 9, Zechariah 8:7, Matthew 2:6, Luke 2:32, Acts 7:34.

Matthew 2:6 refers to Micah 6:2, “Out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel.”

This ‘ruler’ is foretold in Isaiah7:14, “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.”   None could deny that this refers to Jesus! Interestingly in the next chapter 8:8 we read; “And he (king of Assyria) shall pass through Judah; and the stretching out of his wings shall fill the breadth of thy land, O Immanuel.” ( We will return to this later).

This ‘ruler ’ being Jesus Christ, was revealed to Mary in Luke 1:31-33. “And behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and shall bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.” This was to be in fulfilment of God’s promise to David in 2 Samuel 7:14,16. “I will be his father, and he shall be my son. And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.”

The throne of David continued until king Zedekiah, when, because of wickedness God declared in Isaiah 21:26-27 “Remove the diadem, and take off the crown; and it shall be no more UNTIL he come whose right it is: and I will give it him.”

God, having declared that Jesus would sit on David’s throne, revealed that Jerusalem would be the centre of Christ’s world-wide kingdom!   (Micah 4:8)

‘Christendom’ generally seems to have ignored what is written in Matthew 10:5.  “These twelve Jesus sent forth and COMMANDED them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, …but go rather to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.” Then in 15:24 He says, “I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the House of Israel.”

The large sign in THREE languages over the head of Christ, that was put over the head of Jesus, stating, “JESUS OF NAZARETRH THE KING OF THE JEWS.” (John 19:19) when he was crucified on a stake (Greek ‘stauros’)) before he died, was prophetic, as Jesus has NOT YET returned to be their king.    

This prophecy has now been ignored by ‘Christenedom’. They have removed the sign altogether.                          The title has been changed into a bar of a cross.  

The cross is a pagan sun symbol! Evidence abounds in many cultures.  Most recently the remarkable ‘Idol of Pomos’ found in Cyprus and now on their Euro coin.                                      

Any who may be horrified at such a statement, should appreciate the reasons why the sign of a cross put on the head of a baby or person when they are ‘Christened’/ ‘baptised’, is condemned in Revelation 13:16,18 and 15:9.    NOTE: There is NO OTHER ‘Christian’ symbol that could be applicable!!                                       

The cross has been substituted for the REAL hope, and with it the pagan belief that when one dies their energy returns to the sun, has been adapted into the belief that on death the life or (soul) goes to the sky (or heaven). This is TOTALLY against all Biblical teaching, which proclaims that resurrection to live on this earth is the ONLY hope.        (John 11:24, 1 Corinthians 15:13, 1 Chronicles 16:15-18).                                              We are told that David, called “a man after God’s own heart” (Acts 13:22) - therefore highly commended -did not ascend to heaven in Acts 2:34. This was said more than 40 days AFTER the resurrection of Jesus Christ!                            

Bible teaching is clear.                                                                                                                                                                            Psalm 146:4 “Man’s breath goeth forth, he returns to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish”.        Ezekiel 18:20 “The soul that sinneth, it shall die.”                                                                                     Ecclesiastes 9:5,6 “For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not anything, their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished;”                                                                                                                         Psalm 115:16 “The heaven, even the heavens, are the LORD’S: but the earth hath he given to the children of men. The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down into silence.”

How important is Jerusalem?

David was king in Jerusalem for 33 years, and it was known as ‘the city of David’ and ‘Zion’. ( 2 Samuel 5:3,7)

Solomon built the Temple in Jerusalem in accordance with David’s wishes.. God tells Solomon in 1 Kings 9:3 “I have hallowed this house, which thou hast built, to put my name there for ever; and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually.”                                                                                                                                                      God reveals to Solomon in 2 Chronicles 6:6 “But I (God) have chosen Jerusalem, that my name might be there; and have chosen David to be over my people.”   ‘David’ also means ‘My Beloved’ which prophetically referred to Jesus Christ . As David had already died, it referred back to 2 Samuel 7:12.

There are many references to Jerusalem throughout scriptures, and many speak about the future.

Psalm 122:6 “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem; they shall prosper that love thee.”                                               Psalm 128:5 “For the LORD shall bless thee out of Zion: and thou shalt see the good of Jerusalem all the days of thy life.”                                                                                                                                                                              Psalm 132: 13,14 “For the LORD hath chosen Zion; he hath desired it for his habitation. This is my rest for ever: here will I dwell; for I have desired it.”                                                                                                                              Isaiah 2:3,4 “for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. …the nations shall not learn war any more.”                                                                                                                                                 Isaiah24:23 “when the LORD of hosts shall reign in mount Zion and in Jerusalem, and before his ancients gloriously.”                                                                                                                                                                                        Isaiah 46: 13 “I will place salvation in Zion for Israel my glory.”                                                                          Isaiah 62: 1 “For Zion’s sake will I not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest,”                                  v.7 “And give him no rest, till he establish and make Jerusalem a praise in the earth.”

Jeremiah 3:17 “At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD.”                                                                 Joel 2:32 “For in mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said.”

Matthew 5:35 “swear not by Jerusalem; for it is the city of the great king.”                                                         Luke 21:24 “and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.”                                 

Revelation 21:2 “And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven,”     This verse indicates the temple that will be in Jerusalem has been designed by God. All its details, measurements, etc. are recorded in the eight chapters of Ezekiel from 40 to 48.

40:2 “In the visions of God brought he me into the land of Israel.” ‘the details of the temple came down from God who is in heaven’, indicating what it would be like when Christ establishes his kingdom. It is also termed elsewhere as the ‘heavenly Jerusalem’

As mentioned earlier, “ they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD” - indicating a future time.

However, if we turn to 1 Kings 2:12 we find; “Then sat Solomon upon the throne of David his father.”          1 Chronicles29:23 “Then Solomon sat on the throne of the LORD as king.” This clearly indicates that the throne was established in God’s purpose right from the time God made the promise to David.                          Psalm 93:2 “Thy throne is established of old.”

In Isaiah 9, Christ’s second coming is foretold. V.7 “Of the increase of his Government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever.”

Psalm 2: 6-8, “Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion. I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me and I will give thee the nations for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.”

Habbakkuk 2:14 “For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD.”

Before Christ’s kingdom is established, the events recorded in Joel 3:1,2 and Zechariah 14 will take place.  

Joel 3:1,2. “For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.”                                                                                                                                                       Zechariah 14:2 “For I (God) will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle”.                                                    v.12 “And this will be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, and their eyes shall consume away in their holes, and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth.”

These events have NEVER happened yet, but the problems in the Middle East indicate that it will not be too long before it comes to pass.

How important is the land of Israel?

Genesis 12:7 “And the LORD appeared unto Abram ( later changed to Abraham), and said, Unto thy seed will I give this land.”                                                                                                                                                            Genesis 13:15 “For all the land that thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever.”               Genesis 15:18 “In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates:”                                            Abraham never inherited the land promised.                                                                                                                            God also promised: “in thy seed shall all nations of the earth be blessed: because thou hast obeyed my voice.” (Genesis 22:18).                                                                                                                                                           In these two references, the word ‘seed’ refers specifically to Christ. (Galatians 3:16)    

Abraham knew that God MUST resurrect him to fulfil His promise. His faith was also demonstrated when he was prepared to offer up Isaac, knowing that Isaac would have to be resurrected if God was to fulfil his promise that; “Through Isaac shall thy seed be called.” (Genesis 21:12). He recognised that God would, through his seed, provide the one who would Redeem from death all those who had believed God. (Genesis 22:14 and Hebrews 11:19).

Why did God make such promises to Abraham?                                                                                                              Romans 4:3 “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted unto him for righteousness.” V.13 “For the promise that he would be heir to the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.”   ( Hebrews 11:6 “But without faith it is impossible to please God.”)

The area of the land promised to Abraham was called ‘the Promised Land’.

When they were due to enter into the Promised Land under Moses, the people of Israel did not have faith in God’s word, and were frightened of the inhabitants of the land because of their strength and size. (Numbers 13:31-33). They were therefore denied access to the land, and were doomed to journey in the wilderness for forty years until all the unfaithful perished, and it would be left to their children, and the faithful Caleb and Joshua to enter it. (Joshua was to take over from Moses)   (Numbers 14:23).

Leviticus 25:23 “The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me.”                                                                                                                                                                 Deuteronomy 11:12 “A land which the LORD thy God careth for: the eyes of the LORD thy God are always upon it, from the beginning of the year even unto the end of it.”  Why? I refer back to Isaiah 8:8 quoted earlier, where it is called ‘Immmanuel’s land’, confirming it will be the ‘first dominion’ of his world-wide kingdom. (Micah 4:8)

Deuteronomy 32:9 “For the LORD’S portion is his people, Jacob is the lot of his inheritance.”

In Joshua 1:6 God tells him; “Be strong and of good courage: for unto this people (Israel) shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land which I sware unto their fathers to give them.”

What did Jesus say about the land?

Luke 22:29,30 “Jesus said to his disciples, “I appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father has appointed unto me; That ye shall eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit upon thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.” The disciples were encouraged by this, and must have been eagerly looking forward to that day. Thus it was the last question they asked Jesus before he ascended into heaven. “Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?” (Acts 1:6).

That it was not the right time becomes obvious to us when we appreciate that it was needful for them to compile a record of all events connected with the life and teachings of Jesus.

Now think carefully, and compare what Jesus said to the Jews who would reject him, in Matthew 8:11,12 and Luke 13:28,29.

Matthew 8   “And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and the west, and shall sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness.”

Luke 13 “There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves cast out. And they shall come from the east and the west, and from the north and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdom of God.”

What do we learn from these verses?

a.) ‘The kingdom of Heaven’ / ‘Kingdom of God’ are the same. Note: It is not ‘IN’ but ‘OF’ Heaven/ ‘OF God’.

b.) Those named and all the prophets must ALL be resurrected.

c.) As they come from the four points of the compass it shows that:                                                                          (i) the faithful will come from the place where they were buried!                                                                           (ii) the ‘Kingdom’ will be established ON the earth.

d.) Those ‘cast out’ will be the Jews that reject Christ.

e.) The ‘Kingdom’ is none other than that which Christ taught his disciples to pray for in Matthew 6:10   and Luke11:2. “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is done in heaven.”

Who then is the Jewish Messiah?

Many Jews still await the coming of their Messiah to save them. They still have the same hope. (They are blinded in part – Romans 11:25).

Luke 1:71-75 “That we should be saved from the hand of our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us, To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant; The oath which he sware to our father Abraham, That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear, In holiness and righteousness before him, all the days of our life.”

The Jews did not accept Christ because he would not lead them against the Roman rulers, refusing to be crowned their king, at that time. Matthew 21:5-9.

What they overlooked were the scriptural references to the Gentiles becoming acceptable before they (as the nation of Israel) were saved.                                                                                                                                        When Paul wrote in Romans 15:10, “Rejoice, ye Gentiles, with his people, he refers to Isaiah 11:10, “And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people: to it shall the Gentiles seek.” THEN, in the following verse it says, “And it shall come to pass that the Lord shall set his hand again to recover the remnant of his people.”

Paul explains in Romans 11:25 that, “That blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in.”                                                                                                                                                                             2 Timothy 3:15 “That from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, (Old Testament) which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Jesus Christ.”                                                                                                  (The New Testament is in the Old contained; the Old is in the New explained).                 Jesus was declared to be, “A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.” (Luke 2:23).

The Jewish Messiah was and is, Jesus Christ!     When he returns, they will recognise their mistake.

Zechariah 12:10, “and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and shall mourn for him.” Zechariah 13:6 “And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then shall he answer,   Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.”                                                                                              

Jesus was born of our nature, being of the seed of Abraham and David. He did not pre-exist, EXCEPT in the purpose of God.   God indicated in the beginning of this creation that resurrection was a vital feature.

Genesis 1:5,8,13,19,23,31 all end with “the evening and the morning” being the days. Thus every single person that has ever lived, have experienced figurative death and resurrection every day and every week of their life. It is quite common to hear people say after a hard day’s work, “When I went to sleep, I was dead to the world.”

Throughout the world resurrection is evident in Nature. Flowers die and bloom again in the spring.         This shows that all his creation gives God praise. All declare his purpose.

God declared in Isaiah 46:9 “I am God, and there is none else: I am God, and there is none like me.”

John 14:28   Jesus said, “My father is greater than I.”

Hebrews 2:16 “For verily Jesus took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.”

1 Corinthians 15:27 “For God hath put all things under Christ’s feet. But when God saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that God is excepted, which did put all things under Christ.”

As Jesus was to declare God’s righteousness, it was ESSENTIAL that he was born of our (human) nature for God had decreed; “The soul that sinneth it shall die.” (Ezekiel 18:4). ONLY then could sin be ‘condemned in the flesh’.

To redeem the faithful from eternal death, it was necessary that one born of our nature, tempted and tried in all points like us, should not sin, so when he was unjustly killed, God could JUSTIFIABLY resurrect him from the dead.

IF Jesus was not born of human nature, “then he COULD NOT condemn sin in the flesh.” This challenges the clear statement in Romans 8:3 and would make his sacrifice a substitutionary sacrifice. That would therefore mean it would be no different to that of offering bulls, goats and sheep!

Christ was different to us in that having God as his Father, God’s eternal purpose was embedded the mind of Jesus and this guided all his thoughts and actions. He CONSTANTLY quoted the Old Testament showing he understood his role in God’s purpose. He was ‘in tune’ and therefore at one with God.

The ‘churches’ themselves, show the idea of the ‘trinity’ (‘tri’ means 3) to be false when they ‘blesstheir people – not with THREE points, but FOUR!!!!   The trinity idea of equal gods comes from Egyptian beliefs.

The ‘Holy Spirit’ is the distinct and separate power of God that reveals God’s purpose.

2 Peter 1:21 “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.”

Jesus, the prophets, his apostles, and some believers in the first century were given the power of the Holy Spirit so that what they preached, they proved they spoke on God’s behalf. This was to enable everyone to learn that Jesus was the Son of God, and the Redeemer promised to Israel.   (This was necessary in the first century, as there was not a complete record of what Jesus had taught). His last message, The Book of Revelation, was given to John on the Isle of Patmos around AD 96.

Matthew 28:16, Mark 16:11, Luke 24:33, John 20:22 indicate that Jesus ONLY gave his 11 apostles (and Paul – 2Timothy 1:6) the permission to pass on the Holy Spirit gifts.

The Holy Spirit was given then solely for spreading the gospel of Christ. In Acts 4:31, Ananias and Sapphira were given the Holy Spirit, but in 5:1-10 we find that they were slain by Peter because they abused it.

When ‘The Comforter’ which is ‘The Holy Spirit’ (John 14:26), enlightened and enabled the apostles to recall and understand the teachings of Christ, and put them on record, there was no need for the ‘gifts’ to continue to be passed on, after the Book of Revelation had been recorded.                                                             Acts 8:13-18, proves that the Holy Spirit gifts were not given to everyone that was baptised. (As do the letters to the seven ecclesia’s in Revelation chapters 2 and 3).

The Bible contains EVERYTHING that we need to know for salvation.                                                               Romans 1:16 “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Gentiles.”                                                                            “Galatians 1:9 “As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.”                                                                                                                               The last chapter of the last book in The Bible – Revelation 22:18, says, “If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:”

NOTHING can be ADDED or REMOVED, so what benefit can any who claim to have ‘Holy Spirit possession’ offer?

What is the relevance of all this information to us?

As Paul was Christ’s apostle to the Gentiles, we can do no better than look at what he wrote.

Ephesians 2:12 The ‘Gentiles’ are “aliens from the Commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world.”

It is necessary then that to become associated with ‘the Commonwealth of Israel’ one must understand and believe the ‘Gospel’. This is, ‘The glad tidings concerning the Kingdom of God. What it is, and how it will come to pass’.

Having understood, and believed, Christ required that we then have to acknowledge we did not fully appreciate God’s purpose, and that we needed to be ‘baptised’.                                                                      Mark 16:16 “He that believeth and is baptised shall be saved;”

Baptism is not to be confused with ‘sprinkling’ which many ‘churches’ use!                                                               It is not possible for infants to be legitimately baptised, for they cannot understand, let alone believe anything!!

To be baptised, one has to be TOTALLY covered/ submerged in water!   It signifies that we are symbolically ‘buried’, so that we can then rise to a new life in Christ.

All past events in our life are ‘washed away’, and that from that moment we are ‘responsible’ for our actions and thoughts, and will have to give an account of our life at the day of Judgement. (Romans 6:3-11).

Being now ‘in’ Christ, one becomes associated with the faithful of Israel.  

Galatians 3:29 “And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, (through faith) and heirs according to the promise.”

Galatians 3:9 “So then, they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.”     The ‘Gentiles’ now become, as we read in Ephesians 3:6, “fellow heirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel.”

Ephesians 4:4 “There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in the one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.”

Paul sums up the situation when he says in Acts 28:20, “For the Hope of Israel I am bound with this chain.”

Christ said in John15:13, Greater love hath no man than this, that a man laid down his life for his friends.” He then says in the following verse, “Ye are my friends IF ye do whatsoever I command you.”

Matthew 28:20, Jesus told his disciples, “Teach them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.”                                                                                                                                                                                                              Then in Luke 10:16 Jesus said to his disciples, “He that heareth you, heareth me.”

Acts 1:2, Jesus taught his apostles, “Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Spirit had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen.”   These are revealed throughout their writings.

Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 1:1, he was “ Called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ, through the will of God” and states in 1 Corinthians 14:37, “The things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.”

There are scores of commandments that cover every aspect of one’s life and actions.                                                     If they are faithfully followed, then the individual will develop a character which the Lord Jesus Christ will recognise and reward, on his return.

Jeremiah 16:19, foretelling the return of Jesus Christ, writes; “The Gentiles ( which must actually include ALL those who have not understood the importance of Israel) shall come to thee from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit.”

Ivor Thomas

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Public Monthly Talk


The Brethren of Christ Ecclesia holds talks on the first Thursday of each month in London.  They are given at:

The Highgate Society Hall,
10a South Grove,
Highgate Village,
London, N6 6BS
.

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