Hi Jesus Plus Nothing,
the work you have done on the Feasts of the Lord. And I think your
research is valuable as well; however, one major thought of
difference in answering one of the questions-- who the Feasts are
In remembering why the Children of Israel were called
out in the first place was to be His people AND a representative of
Yahweh to the nations -- to preach His Truth, His Way of Life to the
peoples of all nations. That same Lord is Lord of all, and the same
Lord which Christians say they worship. When the Children of Israel
came out of Egypt, they came with a “mixed multitude” who we read
assimilated INTO the Children of Israel. Those who did were called
“Ger” in Hebrew, the ones who wanted to be a part of Israel because
they wanted to worship the Israeli God--Yahweh.
construct of joining within the Children of Israel is found in both
Rahab and Ruth, both of the lineage of Jesus. My favourite conversion
is when Ruth said to Naomi, “…your people will be my people, you God
my God…” This explains her conversion and when the scripture states
that no Moab can be married up to 10 generations, she was allowed.
She was no longer a Moabitess, just like Rahab was no longer a
harlot. That is the same Saviour changing whosoever will!
Back to the feasts: The feasts are His -- His seasons, His divine
appointments (mo’ed in Hebrew), His holy convocations (dress
rehearsals). We see the first of the feasts of Spring already
fulfilled when Jesus came… the fall feasts also have their great
With that said, please realize that once you
believe in the Messiah of the OT who came in the NT, you are a Child
of Israel-- you are a Ger grafted into the Root/the Vine. We can
also see the result of all those who believe in Revelation. For
instance, the New Jerusalem in has only the names of the 12 tribes.
I ask you -- which gate will you enter?
This is also why
Jesus said if we loved Him, we would keep His commandments--His
feasts are included. Is He not Lord of the old as well as the new?
Replacement theology has taken such a deep hold on the
called out ones (wrongly called church in the KJV); but you have
missed who you are in the Messiah. You are Israel! There is no
Gentile or Jew believer -- just Israel, just Ephraim!
you consider your identity in Jesus the Christ, then please consider
the covenant between Abraham and Yhwh so you will know why Jesus
Christ came. Here is a hint: 1 John 3:4 … and all of 1 John, really.
Praying the Father draws you, for His glory only…
thanks for the email and your thoughts on the
feasts and wider implications. For what it is worth, I have had a
great love for Israel ever since becoming a Christian. I went to Bible
College when I was 3 years old in the Lord and disagreed with the
lecturer who was teaching replacement theology. Even got called into
the Principles office over that one! :)
That said however,
there are problems if you go too far in the opposite direction as well
and I detect that with some of your comments. So I'll add some
thoughts after your comments in blue, below.
...With that said, please realize that once
you believe in the Messiah of the OT who came in the NT, you are a
Child of Israel-- you are a Ger grafted into the Root/the Vine. We can
also see the result of all those who believe in Revelation. For
instance, the New Jerusalem in has only the names of the 12 tribes. I
ask you -- which gate will you enter?
The New Testament
doesn't speak of Gentile believers as being a 'child of Israel'. It
does speak of them being sons of Abraham. Gentiles are grafted into
the root which most believe to be the covenant promises to Abraham and
his seed - which Paul notes is singular and is speaking of Christ (Gal
3:16). We aren't grafted into Israel itself as they are the natural
branches, some of which are broken off in this current age (Rom
11:17-21). In terms of the New Jerusalem, yep, it wonderfully shows
the unity of believers of all ages (even Abraham 4000 years ago looked
forward to the new city! Heb 11:10) and thus has the names of the
tribes of Israel as well as the twelve apostles of the Lamb. There is
nothing there that says Gentile believers today are part of one of the
tribes any more than it means we are one of the twelve apostles of
the Lamb. It is simply showing the unity of believers from all ages
that will dwell together in this new long-promised city.
This is also why Jesus said if we loved Him,
we would keep His commandments--His feasts are included. Is He not
Lord of the old as well as the new?
If I said to you
that the old Mosaic covenant is obsolete you wouldn't like it very
much would you? You would disagree. If I said that the reason there is
a new covenant is because the old covenant failed and was done away
with, you probably wouldn't like it. Yet both statements are true and
completely scriptural. I encourage you to read Heb 8. The New Covenant
is a more excellent ministry, a better covenant. And yes, it makes the
Old obsolete as scripture says below. To try to live under two
different covenants is madness and confusion and is severely warned
against in Hebrews and in other books like Galatians. Why, when there
is a new better covenant, are you trying to hold onto the old one?
If I wrote a will and then legally replaced it years later with a
new one, would anyone have a leg to stand on before the court if they
still tried to claim an inheritance because they were named in the
older will? Of course not... that is obsolete. It has been replaced
with the new will and that is all that matters. The New Covenant that
God has brought in through Christ's death renders the old covenant
obsolete. Read below from Heb 8 (in fact read the whole chapter).
Heb 8:6-7 But now He (Jesus) has obtained a more excellent
ministry, by as much as He is also the mediator of a better
covenant, which has been enacted on better promises.
(7) For if that first covenant had been faultless, there would
have been no occasion sought for a second.
Heb 8:13 When He said, "A new covenant," He has made the first
obsolete. But whatever is becoming obsolete and
growing old is ready to disappear.
Replacement theology has taken such a deep
hold on the called out ones (wrongly called church in the KJV); but
you have missed who you are in the Messiah. You are Israel! There is
no Gentile or Jew believer -- just Israel, just Ephraim!
I agree that replacement theology is wrong and has caused great
confusion within believers today and through Church history. I also
agree that there is no Jew nor Gentile in Christ. But I fear that you
have missed what Jesus did and what now remains. It is not that Jew
and Gentile believers are now 'Israel'. We do not now get grafted into
Israel itself and the old covenant that failed and was abolished... No
it is something FAR FAR better. He has created something entirely new
in Himself having 'having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is,
the law of commandments contained in ordinances.'
2:11-16 Therefore remember that you, once Gentiles in the flesh--who
are called Uncircumcision by what is called the Circumcision made in
the flesh by hands-- (12) that at that time you were without Christ,
being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the
covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.
(13) But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been
brought near by the blood of Christ. (14) For He Himself is our peace,
who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of
separation, (15) having abolished in His flesh the enmity,
that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so
as to create in Himself one new man from the two,
thus making peace, (16) and that He might reconcile them both to God
in one body through the cross, thereby putting to death the enmity.
Here is the key thought - the goal was 'to create in Himself one
new man from the two! Create something new... not
just graft Gentiles into the laws of Israel. Jesus took both Jews and
Gentiles, abolished the law of commandments (which previously caused a
separation between the groups) and created something entirely new -
one new man in Him as the scripture above states.
So it is not
that I have missed who I am in the Messiah Jesus. I know my identity
in Christ very well and I will be eternally grateful for the grace
given me to have such a position. And it is not that I am now Israel.
No, I have been included in something far better and greater. I am a
new creation in a new body, in Christ Jesus. Something far better. I
would encourage you to read about this wonderful privileged position
that defines the identity of EVERY true believer in Christ Jesus here:
Look at what the Apostle Paul said who knew all about his 'identity'
as an Israelite (whic he once took glory and pride in) and then
learned of His new identity in Jesus Christ. Being an Israelite, of
the tribe of Benjamin, and being an expert in the law WERE NOT what
Paul put any weight or glory in. He said he counts them 'as rubbish'
once he learnt of his position 'in Christ' and having a gift of
righteousness by faith:
Php 3:4-9 ... If anyone else thinks he may have confidence in the
flesh, I more so: (5) circumcised the eighth day, of the stock
of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews;
concerning the law, a Pharisee; (6) concerning zeal, persecuting the
church; concerning the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.
(7) But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for
Christ. (8) Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence
of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the
loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain
Christ (9) and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which
is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the
righteousness which is from God by faith;
Finally, if a believer wants to keep the feasts outwardly each year,
then fine, go for it. There is freedom in Christ to do so. As I say in
the study, as shadows they contain many important truths that God has
placed within them. But ALWAYS remember that they are but a shadow...
they are not the reality. The reality is found in Christ. That is what
we want to experience.
Col 2:16-17 Therefore do not let
anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a
religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day.
(17) These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the
reality, however, is found in Christ.
best and may God bless,