Sunday, 16 July 2017

The Story of Israel is the Church's Story

The story of Israel became the story of the Church, naturally, in an unbroken line - they're not two separate stories, two separate lines.
Israel's story:
Israel was born → went into captivity → was restored to their land → in that setting their Messiah came → the body of believers was at first all Jewish (the story of the Church was told as the story of Israel in beautiful fulfilment) → only afterwards did Gentiles graciously come to belong to that same group, the people of God - in one new man, the body of Messiah, called in one hope of eternal life.
All of that faithfully fulfilled another earlier story - the promise which was spoken to a man without offspring named Abraham:
" thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed..."
Not seeds, plural; seed, singular - which was Christ. All nations (without ethnic distinction) are blessed (justified, sanctified, saved) in Christ (without needing to become proselytes to Judaism).
The promise was made before Israel was born, before the Law was given. Abraham's grandson Jacob (whose name became Israel) became the custodians of that promise/plan. They had the privilege of being the first to receive the Saviour - the promised seed - and the first to make Him known. Now the light has come to all men.
Israel → Messiah (church, first Jewish) → then all nations, together as one in the Messiah (as always intended and planned). And all of that fulfilling a larger story, the story of once childless man named Abraham who now has many sons in every nation.
Such wonderful fulfilment. That is Abraham's story. That is Israel's story. That is the Church's story. Such a beautiful story!

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