Pull up a chair and join us at the study table! This is part 3 of a series I’m doing regarding the return of King Jesus! If you missed the first two parts, go back and check out:
We found that King Jesus will not return physically to earth until His people invite Him to return. Matthew 23:39 says:
“For I say to you, from now on you will not see Me until you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’”
Oh how He must long to hear those words!
When God made a covenant with Abraham, He promised him land and descendants…forever. God had a world view in mind. In fact, Romans 4:13 indicates that Abraham was to be “heir of the world.” God’s idea was of a worldwide kingdom, and He uniquely invited us all to become part of His kingdom.
For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical. But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God.
~Romans 2:28-29 (ESV)
We’re all invited in! When the Lord Jesus circumcised our hearts (saved us, put a “new heart” within us), we entered His kingdom realm!
But hold on! Good for us…not so good for the unbelieving Jew, who is also the descendant of Abraham. How does that work? Good question! To understand, we have to draw a distinction between “natural Israel” (son of Abraham by birth and lineage) and “spiritual Israel” (son of Abraham by salvation through the Lord Jesus Christ. (Galatians 3:29)
We share a “spiritual” heritage. Spiritual Israel is the true family of God! Paul puts it this way, in Romans 11:17-23:
- Some Israelites have been broken off from their own tree.
- Some Gentiles have been grafted into that tree.
- As a branch, we cannot boast because the root supports us…the branch doesn’t support the root.
- God is both severe to those who disobey and kind to those who trust Him.
- The “broken off” (unsaved) people of Israel may be grafted back into the tree.
Yet, God has not forgotten about “natural Israel.” They will be restored. In fact, Romans 11:24-26a describes a national salvation of ALL Israel! As great as the spiritual revelation is to us Gentiles, consider how much more glorious it will be when natural Israel becomes spiritual Israel! The Apostle Paul spoke of it in Romans 11:11-15:
Did God’s people stumble and fall beyond recovery? Of course not! They were disobedient, so God made salvation available to the Gentiles. But he wanted his own people to become jealous and claim it for themselves. Now if the Gentiles were enriched because the people of Israel turned down God’s offer of salvation, think how much greater a blessing the world will share when they finally accept it. I am saying all this especially for you Gentiles. God has appointed me as the apostle to the Gentiles. I stress this, for I want somehow to make the people of Israel jealous of what you Gentiles have, so I might save some of them. For since their rejection meant that God offered salvation to the rest of the world, their acceptance will be even more wonderful. It will be life for those who were dead!
Oh glorious day when the King is invited back by His people!
But, here’s a secret…it will be a united effort! Check back tomorrow as we bring this mini-study to a close. There will be two parts tomorrow…so check back early, then again mid-day for the grand finale. I have something special planned!
See you then!