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Heavenly and Earthly Seed - The Book of Revelation
Week 49, 2018
Continuing with our theme of the heavenly and earthly seeds of Abraham, Paul wrote in Romans that there has been a partial hardening of the Jewish people until the “times of the Gentiles are complete.” Then he declared that “all Israel will be saved.” The indications concerning what is required for the times of the Gentiles to be completed are things such as the bride of Christ being made ready and the grafting back in of the “natural branches,” which includes “all Israel being saved.”
To date, there has been a partial restoration of Israel to part of their Promised Land, and only a tiny percentage of the Jewish people have come to know Jesus as their Messiah. Neither would anyone claim that the church has come to her place of readiness, declared to be “without spot or wrinkle.” Obviously, the “times of the Gentiles” are not yet complete. So one of the signs we should be looking for is for both the church and Israel to start moving resolutely toward their fullness. A Messianic leader once said to me, “We wish that the church would get its act together and become what it is called to be so that Israel can become what she is called to be.” This was from a man of understanding. The church should also have the understanding that we cannot come into our full purpose without Israel.
Fundamental to our understanding of these coming to their fullness is linked to why Revelation does not mention the restoration of Israel. This Revelation that Jesus was given to give to His bondservants culminated with the New Jerusalem, not the old. Once we grasp the new creation we are called to be, it will eclipse any identity that we have in the natural. Only then will we be able to keep the main thing the main thing—our identity in Christ Jesus as Paul explained in:
Beware of the false circumcision;
for we are the true circumcision, who worship in the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh,
although I myself might have confidence even in the flesh. If anyone else has a mind to put confidence in the flesh, I far more:
circumcised the eighth day, of the nation of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee;
as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless.
But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ.
More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ…
For any who grasp the new creation, and have seen the New Jerusalem, it is no longer possible to put confidence in the flesh, or have our main identity in it. When we have been born again by The Spirit into the family of God, what earthly family or association could ever compare to it? Those who put their confidence in such things as their earthly lineage or tribe could not have grasped the high calling of God in Christ, or even the new creation we are called to be.
Francis Frangipane used to say that he “used to be Italian until he got born again.” However, we all know that he is still Italian. Jews are still Jews and the Irish are still Irish. It is not wrong to have an identity in our tribes and cultures, but it is when we allow our natural associations to eclipse the new creation identity that we have in Christ. When that happens we are living more by the vision of “the seed of Cain” who was “a tiller of the ground,” or earthly minded.
One Messianic leader told me that about 80% of the members of his movement were Gentiles seeking to be Jews. He appreciated their devotion to their movement, but he was concerned that they had so little confidence in their identity in Christ that they would need to try to become something they weren’t. No one who has been born again and grasped who they are called to be in Christ could ever put their confidence in the flesh, or earthly lineages.
That being said, it is crucial for the church to understand God’s plan for natural Israel in order for her to come into her full purpose. To really see it we must view it from the heavenly perspective of the New Jerusalem. It is likewise crucial for natural Israel to comprehend God’s purpose for the church so that she can come into her purpose. Both obviously have a long way to go in this, but we can expect these revelations to come soon if we are in fact coming to the end of this age.
Throughout history, possibly every doctrine has been taken to extremes by those who started to major on the minors. We will never become the church we are called to be if we start worshiping the temple of The Lord instead of The Lord of the temple. Israel will likewise not become what it is called to be if they allow their vision for Israel to eclipse their worship of The Lord. We must see the glory of The Lord to be changed into what we are called to be, and we must do this without the veils of prejudices and the overemphasis of truths in place of The Truth Himself.
next week 50