Tuesday, July 7, 2009
To the Jew First ------- A Look into Romans
The book of Romans is fascinating. We learn much about the whole Bible when we get an understanding of this epistle. My prayer today is, "Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law (Psalm 119:18)."
"For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in. (Romans 11:25)."
What is the "fullness of the Gentiles?" What does that mean? The Greek word for fullness is plhvrwma or pleroma. It means abundance or completeness. For years when I read this scripture, I thought it meant a set number. When the last Gentile made up the saved, then all Israel would be saved. The word pleroma or fullness has to do with that which is brought to completion. The fullness Paul is speaking of is the fullness in the Spirit, the full regenerate life to which we are called as followers of Christ. "And He gave some, apostles, and some, prophets, and some evangelists, and some, pastors and teachers for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, and for the edifying of the body of Christ: till we all come in the unity of faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ...(Ephesians 4:11-13)." The fullness of the Gentiles is not numeric. If it were, we would not need to witness to the Jews. We would just wait until the last Gentile was saved.
As we take all of Romans in consideration and rightly divide the Word of Truth, we see the reason God would wait until the fullness of the Gentiles was complete before all Israel would be saved.
We must remember the blindness that shrouds Israel now, is only partial. God always has a remnant of His own. "Even so then, at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace (Romans 11:5)." There is a remnant now, of Jews that follow Jesus. The remnant is growing quickly, as Jews from all over the world are accepting their Messiah, Yeshua.
Why was salvation offered to the Gentiles? Romans 11:11, "I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall, salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy."
One of the reasons we Gentiles have been offered the gift of salvation is to make the Jews jealous. Now I ask, how can we make the Jews jealous? At this time, Jews are not jealous of the Church. The Church today, is a far cry from the first century Church. We have allowed the traditions of men to dull our light to the Jews. Yeshua (Jesus) said, "Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered and many such like things do ye (Mark 7:13)." Our children know more about Santa and the Easter bunny than they know about our blessed Passover Lamb or the Light of the World, Yeshua.
How can we, as the Church, make the Jews jealous? We need to teach ourselves and our children our Jewish roots. As the wonderful chosen people of God, the Jews, see us waving their flag, lighting their Menorah, breaking their Matza, wearing their Tallit, blowing their shofar, they will become jealous and curious. As we pray for them and love them, God will bring His remnant in and the Church will reach her fullness. Then all of Israel shall be saved.
"And one shall say unto Him, 'What are these wounds in thine hands?' Then He will answer, 'Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends. ( Zechariah 13:6).'
Rejoice my brothers and sisters!
HEAVEN IS COMING TO EARTH!
IT'S ABOUT TIME!