Many Christians really do need a fresh reading of the New Testament, especially the gospels and the book of Acts. There is way too much theology that has been taught that does not line up with the narrative given to us from Matthew through Acts.
For instance, the early church was predominately Jewish believers. The national Jews who rejected the gospel were the ones who were primarily responsible for the persecution of the first Christians. They persecuted their Jewish kinsmen who were followers of Jesus because they viewed them as a religious sect, and saw them as a threat to their religious and national status.
The message of the gospel was sent, first, to the house of Israel, and in due time the gospel began to spread all over the world to Gentiles everywhere.
The concept that the church of the Lord Jesus Christ is a Gentile entity is contrary to the narrative given in scripture. The church is the Israel of God under the New Covenant, for the New Covenant was given to the house of Israel and the house of Judah. ~ Jeremiah 31:31-34; Hebrews 8:8-13
This New Covenant with Israel was established by the blood of Jesus, who is the mediator of the New Covenant (Matthew 28:26, Hebrews 12:24), and it is through this covenant that the Gentiles have been grafted into the household of God with the Jews who believe in the Messiah.
For through him (Jesus) we both (Jews and Gentiles) have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye (Gentiles) are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God… ~ Ephesians 2:18-19
In reality, the church is born again Israel which has its beginning with 120 Jewish followers of Jesus which continued to grow in numbers, enduring persecution from their kinsmen in the flesh.
When Jesus died and rose again, God’s covenant with Israel in the flesh came to an end, and the New Covenant that God had promised to Israel was inaugurated.
When the Jewish temple was destroyed in 70 A.D., the religious service which pertained to the Old Covenant, though it had already been made ineffective, became completely inoperative. God’s covenant people are no longer identified as a physical nation with natural boundaries, but as a spiritual nation consisting of people from every nationality. This fulfilled God’s promise to Abraham to make him the father of many nations!
Don’t blame the Gentiles for this. It was the Jewish followers of Jesus who obeyed Jesus’ command and began making disciples of people from other nations.
The followers of Jesus, consisting of Jews and Gentiles in one body are the born again Israel, for they are partakes of the New Covenant which God gave to ISRAEL!
The days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and with the people of Judah. It will not be like the covenant I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they did not remain faithful to my covenant, and I turned away from them, declares the Lord. This is the covenant I will establish with the people of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. No longer will they teach their neighbor, or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.” By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and outdated will soon disappear. ~ Hebrews 8:8-13
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