Romans 16:17-20 ESV
“I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive. For your obedience is known to all, so that I rejoice over you, but I want you to be wise as to what is good and innocent as to what is evil. The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.”
Returning to the Old Covenant
There are multiple dangerous doctrines disguised as the Christian faith and practice out there, so I will not cover them all. But there are two which are strongly pulling the church in the wrong direction, and which are leading them astray from the Lord and from his will and purpose for our lives.
The first one I am going to cover has to do with the Old Covenant, which is being taught to Christians and is being forced upon them that if they do not follow certain aspects of it that they are in danger of God’s wrath coming against them. Paul addressed this subject much, especially in Galatians 3-4.
So, what they are doing is the same as the Judaizers of Paul’s day were doing, and that is that they were trying to convince Christians that they had to follow certain Old Covenant practices, such as circumcision, and such as following some liturgical and ceremonial laws and customs.
And now Christians are being pressured into not only supporting the physical nation of Israel, but in putting them in a position as though they are a god to be worshipped. For they are teaching that the Jewish nation is still God’s covenant people and all that God said about his people still applies today.
So, what they are saying is that we must pray for them for their peace, and we must pray against their enemies, and we must give them our loyalty, and we must not oppose them in any way, or we are in danger of God’s wrath. Some Christians are even making death threats against fellow Christians.
So, what they are trying to do is to bring Christians back under the Old Covenant law and system which Jesus freed us from by his death on a cross, when he destroyed the barrier between Jew and Gentile, and he made us both one in Christ by faith in Jesus Christ.
What the Scriptures Teach
The Scriptures teach us that God made a promise to Abraham and to his seed, and that seed is Jesus Christ. So, any promises made to Abraham and to his seed apply to Christians, not to anyone who doesn’t believe in Jesus Christ. We are God’s covenant people now. We are heirs of the promise.
Also, not all who are physical descendants of Abraham belong to Israel. And they aren’t all children of Abraham just because they are his physical offspring. It is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring.
Therefore, if we belong to Christ Jesus, by faith in him, then we are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise. For, Jesus’ purpose was to create in himself ONE new humanity out of the two (Jew and Gentile), and through Jesus we both have access to the Father by ONE Spirit.
The Scriptures teach that anyone who does not believe in Jesus Christ as the Messiah, who denies him, is the antichrist. And this includes unbelieving Jews. It also teaches that they are of Hagar, the slave woman, and they are not of Sarah, the free woman, for they are still in slavery with their children.
But Christians, not those in name only, but those who have died with Christ to sin and who are living to Christ and to his righteousness, are of the free woman, who is being symbolized by the Jerusalem which is from above. Thus, Jews who do not believe in Jesus will not share in the inheritance.
Only those who are united with Christ, through genuine God-persuaded faith in Jesus Christ, are heirs of the promise God made to Abraham and to his seed. Only we are the children of God. Only we are God’s chosen people. Because it is only through Jesus Christ that we are heirs of the promise.
[Rom. 9:6-8; Gal. 3:10, 16, 26-29; Gal. 4:22-31; Eph. 2:14-18; 1 Jn. 2:22]
The Dangers are Real
Paul went to great lengths to show the Christians the dangers of putting the unbelieving Jews in a position as a god to be worshipped or as though what they were teaching was from God and thus the Christians had to adhere to what they taught. He said emphatically “No!”
And then he said, “Have I then become your enemy by telling you the truth?” Well, you know what? If you teach the truth of what the Scriptures teach regarding who is true biblical Israel today, and if you oppose what the majority appears to be teaching, which is not what the Scriptures teach, you will be treated as an enemy, and you may even receive death threats.
So, what’s going on here? The physical nation of Israel, according to God, is of Hagar and is no different from her Arab neighbors with regard to the promise God made to Abraham. We must all come to God by faith in Jesus Christ or we are not children of God or heirs of the promise.
So, here is a physical nation who, as a nation, has denied Jesus as their Messiah. Thus, they do not worship the same God as we do, because the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is Father, Son (Jesus Christ) and Holy Spirit. So, they are not God’s chosen people. We are.
But they are persuading Christians by the masses to bow to them, and to adhere to their teachings, to give their undivided loyalties to them, to oppose all who oppose them, and to give them their worship as though how we treat them will impact our relationship with Almighty God.
But the Bible says that those who deny Jesus Christ are the antichrist. For, they are opposed to Jesus Christ and his gospel. They are not on God’s side. So, by giving the physical nation of Israel such loyalty and devotion, and by opposing all who oppose them, we are, in fact, opposing God and his true people who are believers in Jesus Christ.
So, think about the power the physical nation of Israel is now wielding. Think with me regarding the deception they are preying upon the naïve and those who are easily persuaded by emotional pressure. This does not come from God! And then look at the Scriptures which describe the antichrist.
The real danger here is that professing Christians by the thousands or by the hundreds of thousands are being led to bow to the antichrist and to worship him and to give him their undying loyalty to the point to where they are willing to hang another Christian and burn him/her at the stake.
This should not be!! This is of Satan! This is not of God! This is not what the Scriptures teach us under the New Covenant. Don’t be led astray. Don’t turn against your own brothers and sisters in Christ in order to give your loyalty and devotion to the enemy. This is exactly what Satan wants!
Please read these New Testament Scriptures. What did Paul tell the Christians? He told them that the unbelieving Jews are their persecutors, not their friends, and that they are to cast them out in the sense of not letting them have any sway over their lives, because the unbelieving Jew (or non-Jew) has no inheritance with Isaac and with us who are in Christ.
The following is a secular song, but these words express God’s words to us, that we would let him be our freedom, that we would let him shelter us and be our light, and that we would find our hope, and our peace and safety in him and not in the things of this dark world. All he asks of us is that we love him, which means we submit to him as Lord, and we obey his commands.
All I Ask of You
by Andrew Lloyd Webber
No more talk of darkness,
Forget these wide-eyed fears;
I’m here, nothing can harm you,
My words will warm and calm you.
Let me be your freedom,
Let daylight dry your tears;
I’m here, with you, beside you,
To guard you and to guide you.
Let me be your shelter,
Let me be your light…
Love me, that’s all I ask of you
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