Monday, May 23, 2016
“Howbeit then, when ye knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods. But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?” (Galatians 4:8,9 KJV).
Not only do we in Christ know God. More importantly, God knows us!
Departing Moses admonishes Israel to remember she alone is God’s special people. Deuteronomy chapter 4: “ Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the LORD my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess it.  Keep therefore and do them; for this is your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation is a wise and understanding people.  For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the LORD our God is in all things that we call upon him for?  And what nation is there so great, that hath statutes and judgments so righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day?”
Once Israel entered the Promised Land, Gentiles were to literally see their unique Law-keeping behavior and respond: “Our dead idols do nothing for us, but, LOOK!, an all-powerful, wise, loving God works mightily in Israel! Let us turn to that God and forget our superstitions and statues!”
Romans chapter 9 describes Israel’s privileges in “time past:” “ Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises;  Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen.” Israel was to be God’s “son-nation,” His earthly coworker-nation. They had His presence, His covenants, His Law (Word), His priesthood, His promises, and His earthly ministry (Matthew through John). Of the Gentiles like us during that time, today’s Scripture says, “[Y]e knew not God, ye did service unto them which by nature are no gods.”
Thank God, we have moved from “time past” to “but now!”