Galatians 4:8-11 ESV
Formerly, when you did not know God, you were enslaved to those that by nature are not gods. But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world, whose slaves you want to be once more? You observe days and months and seasons and years! I am afraid I may have labored over you in vain.
There is a strong evangelical movement in our day among Christians in support of the nation of Israel. Yet, they are teaching Old Covenant theology as though it applies to those of us under the New Covenant. They are convincing believers in Jesus that the Jews are still God’s chosen people and that we, as believers in Jesus, cannot stand in opposition to the Jewish nation without injury to ourselves. And, so they are strong-arming us emotionally that to stand with God means to stand with the Jewish nation.
They teach that it is God’s purpose still to bless the world through the physical nation of Israel, i.e. the Jewish nation. They take scriptures totally out of context and they try to convince us that our salvation came from the Jewish nation itself, and that we are beholding to the Jews for our salvation. They place the Jewish nation almost on an even playing field with Almighty God so as to invoke literal worship of the Jews above worship of God.
And, they stress that Old Testament scripture which says, “And I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.” (Gen. 12:3 NASB). And, that serves as a veiled threat to anyone who would speak against the nation of Israel or who would even attempt to teach the truth of what the Bible says about the Jewish nation today. In fact, I have personally received two death threats from people I know for teaching the truth on this matter.
Yet, this was God’s promise to Abraham and to his SEED, which was ultimately fulfilled in Jesus Christ, who was the promised seed of Abraham. And, it is through Jesus Christ that all the families of the earth will be blessed, not through a godless nation of people who do not even worship the One and Only True God of their ancestors. For, most of them do not believe in God – Father, Son (Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit. And, in reality, the ones who are recipients of this promise are those of us who believe in Jesus Christ (Please Read: Gal. 3:10, 16, 26-29; Rom. 9:6-8; Eph. 2:14-18).
Galatians 4:21-26 ESV
Tell me, you who desire to be under the law, do you not listen to the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave woman and one by a free woman. But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, while the son of the free woman was born through promise. Now this may be interpreted allegorically: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar. Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother.
So, what is this saying, and what is the point of all of this?
The problem that existed then, and that exists still today, is that there were Jews (Judaizers) who were insisting that Gentile believers in Jesus must obey Jewish laws and customs. They were trying to pressure them that they had to follow certain Old Covenant regulations as part of their salvation. Only today, it has turned more into a worship of the Jews, almost as though they are our saviors, and that we must give them our support, for if we do not support them, then we are somehow going against Almighty God.
So, Paul sets the record straight here. He lets us know that we, basically, are no longer Jew and Gentile, as it was under the Old Covenant. But now we are those who believe in Jesus Christ, or we are those who do not believe in Jesus Christ. And, all those who have rejected Jesus Christ as the Messiah, the Christ, our Redeemer, are now all in the same boat. They are all still in slavery to sin, whether Jew or Gentile by birth.
What this is also saying here is that the physical city of Jerusalem is no longer the Holy City of God, for it is in slavery to sin along with the Arab nations and all of those who do not believe in Jesus Christ. This is not saying, however, that there are not individuals from these nations who believe in Jesus, but that all physical descendants of Abraham are not children of the promise. Only those who believe in Jesus Christ are the children (heirs) of the promise. Only we are God’s chosen people.
God was now coupling together both Jews and Arabs together as one, if they did not believe in Jesus as their Messiah. And, he was saying that only those who have trusted in Jesus Christ to be Lord and Savior of their lives are of the free woman, Sarah, and are heirs of the promise along with Isaac. And, he was saying this for the benefit of the Christians who were feeling pressured into obeying Jewish laws and customs to let them know that they did not have to do that, and that they should not do that, in fact.
Galatians 4:28-31 ESV
Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise. But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so also it is now. But what does the Scripture say? “Cast out the slave woman and her son, for the son of the slave woman shall not inherit with the son of the free woman.” So, brothers, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.
Now, we really need to get what this is saying here, for it is critical that we understand this. Again, it is only those who have trusted in Jesus Christ to be Lord and Savior of their lives who are heirs to the promise God made to Abraham and to his Seed. And, we are heirs only because we have trusted in the “Seed” of Abraham, which is Jesus Christ.
Not all who are Jews by birth and who are physical descendants of Abraham, are God’s children, and are God’s chosen people. Only those who believe in Jesus are his chosen ones.
In fact, Jesus told the Jews, who thought they had Abraham as their father, that their father was the devil, because they did not love Jesus, and because they sought to kill him (John 8:34-47). And, in fact, we learn this about all those who deny that Jesus is the Christ (the Messiah), the promised seed:
“Who is the liar? It is whoever denies that Jesus is the Christ. Such a person is the antichrist—denying the Father and the Son.” ~ 1 Jn. 2:22
So everyone who denies, not in words necessarily, but by their lifestyles, that Jesus Christ is God the Son, our Savior, our deliverer of sin and the only way to God the Father, has as his father the devil and is the antichrist. For, they are still in slavery to sin along with physical Jerusalem. But, we who believe in Jesus are from the Jerusalem that is above. We are of the free woman who is no longer in slavery to sin, but is free to walk in Christ’s righteousness and holiness in the power of God’s Spirit at work within us.
And, not only this, but what this is also saying about all those who do not believe in Jesus Christ, but most especially it is speaking of non-believing Jews, is that they are the persecutors of us who do believe in Jesus. They are not the ones being persecuted for their faith in God, but they are of the devil, they are the antichrist, and they are the persecutors of those of us who do believe in Jesus Christ. For, this is what they did to Jesus, and then to his followers after the time in which Jesus died, rose again, ascended to heaven, and sent his Holy Spirit to indwell his followers.
So, the message here is that we are not to get entangled with the Jews and with their nation. We are definitely not to place our support or our trust in them. We are not to give them god-like status and think that somehow they were responsible for giving us our salvation. We are not to adopt their customs or their traditions. We are not to fear them or their threats, either.
If we give them our support, not speaking of humanitarian aid here, but if we raise them to worship status and feel some type of obligation to them and to their customs, or if we feel we must give them our moral or financial support because we believe they are God’s chosen people, then this passage of scripture definitely dispels that myth.
For, if we give them our support, it also means we are supporting those whose father is the devil, who are the antichrist, and who are the persecutors of believers in Jesus Christ who are God’s chosen people. Instead, our support is to be given to God – Father, Son & Holy Spirit – and to those who are truly following the Lord Jesus Christ with their lives.
But, the sad reality here is that so many Christians have bought into this whole lie about the nation of Israel and that we should support them, that if anyone truly believing what Paul wrote here teaches what is written here, we are the ones being attacked by our brothers and sisters in Christ who hold on to what Paul was trying to get the believers to let go of.
So, just know the truth. Our loyalties belong to God alone and our support should go to those who believe in Jesus and who are following him, too.
A Believer’s Prayer
An Original Work / July 31, 2012
With my whole heart, Lord, I pray
To be Yours, and Yours always.
Lead me in Your truth today.
May I love You, and obey.
Lead me in Your righteousness.
When I sin, may I confess;
Bow before You when I pray;
Live for You and You always.
Love You, Jesus, You’re my friend.
Life with You will never end.
You are with me through each day,
Giving love and peace always.
You will ne’er abandon me.
From my sin You set me free.
You died on that cruel tree,
So I’d live eternally.
Soon You’re coming back for me;
From this world to set me free;
Live with You eternally.
Oh, what joy that brings to me.
I will walk with You in white;
A pure bride, I’ve been made right
By the blood of Jesus Christ;
Pardoned by His sacrifice.
Wednesday, December 12, 2018