Sunday, March 30, 2014
“A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh” (Ezekiel 36:26 KJV).
The Great Physician must perform this surgery if His beloved patient is to live!
In the prophetic program, God deals with a Jew on a two-fold basis—personal and national. For example, God wanted every individual Jew to be a priest (Isaiah 61:6; Revelation 1:6; Revelation 5:10) so that the entire nation Israel would be a “kingdom of priests” (Exodus 19:5,6; 1 Peter 2:5,9). In Jesus Christ’s earthly kingdom (yet future), Israel is to become God’s chief nation in the earth, a holy nation, the agency whom God will use to reach pagan Gentiles with His salvation (Zechariah 8:20-23; Matthew 28:19,20; Acts 1:8; et al.). However, Israel cannot lead others to salvation unless she herself is saved from Satan and her own sins.
Recall that when God promised childless Abraham a son (and a nation, Israel; Genesis 12:1-3), and did not bring it to pass until many years later, Abraham grew impatient. After waiting for a decade and still no child from God, Abraham listened to his wife and fathered a son, Ishmael, through her handmaid (Genesis 16:1-6). Twelve years later, God appeared to Abraham and instituted his physical circumcision (Genesis chapter 17). A year later, God gave Abraham, aged 100 and unable to father children, a son, Isaac, through his wife Sarah (Genesis chapter 21).
Galatians says that Ishmael was “born after the flesh” (4:23,29)—Abraham’s performance—while it says that Isaac was born “by promise, born after the Spirit” (4:23,29)—God the Holy Ghost’s performance. If God could ever use a nation born of Abraham, it could never come by human performance (Abraham’s sons were sinners, Adam’s sons)—that nation’s creation would have to be solely God’s working. Physical circumcision was God teaching Abraham and his seed through Isaac that they were dead to the flesh, sin (their performance), and the very reason they existed as a nation was because of what He did for them, not because of what they did for Him….