Dear Jewish Brothers or Sisters

Jewish Brothers and Sisters

I recently watched a five-part series produced by Jews about the lives and history of our Jewish brothers and sisters. I learned a lot. For example, I didn’t know that Israelites don’t think of themselves as Jews until the exodus out of Egypt.

I’m not sure that helps set the context for today’s important topic, but I thought you might find it interesting.

Acts 3:26 (ESV), we find the Apostle Peter preaching, “God, having raised up his servant (i.e., Jesus) sent him to you first, to bless you by turning every one of you from your wickedness.” Peter spoke these words to the Israelites (Acts 3:12).

Christianity is fundamentally Jewish. Jesus, a Jew, is the Messiah God promised to the Jews. The Apostles were Jews. The Eucharist / Communion / the Lord’s Supper, a foundational ordnance of the Church rests upon the Jewish Passover meal. I could go on, but the New Testament is only “New” because of the “Old” Testament, both fully Jewish.

The Gospel of Jesus is God’s continuation of His Promise to Abraham, Issac, and Jacob. Jesus is the promised Messiah (John 4:25-26). And, all who have placed their faith in Jesus are the progeny of Abraham, the father of Issac, the father of Israel (Jacob), the people who exited Egypt and are now know as Jews. We know this from Galatians 3:29 (ESV). “And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.”

Christianity Carries God’s Promise Forward

Christianity is centered on the Messiah. He is the good news, first for the Jews and then for everyone else. We know this because we see in Romans 1:16. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.

I am pointing us back to an important truth plainly stated in the New Testament. This truth is largely rejected in our present world. Jews, the bloodline descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, are the direct heirs of the Promise. The Promise is Jesus and His Gospel. Gentiles, too, have received the Promise but only by adoption. The Bible says that Gentile Christians are “grafted in.” (Romans 11:17)

Gentiles have cast a large shadow over Christian Jews. This isn’t surprising since we live in the dispensation of the Gentiles. But this doesn’t make it okay for the world to identify Christianity as a Gentile religion, separate from the Jews. Sadly, most people in the Church have believed this lie. So, let me plainly say this. If you are a Gentile Christian, you have been adopted. The Jews are your Jewish brothers or sisters, even if, for now, most Jews and Gentiles reject this truth.

Why Am I Bring This Up?

Why am I bringing up what you already know? Because some preachers and denominations claim the Jews lost God’s Promise. Well, they are wrong. Read Romans 11:11-12 if you doubt my statement.

The 2 billion+ people in the world today that identify themselves as Christian need to stand with the Jews and against the growing opposition against them. Once again, we find ourselves at a tipping point in history. Will the Church do the right thing, or will we drive a stake into the “apple of God’s eye” (Psalm 17:8)?

Below are just two recent examples of this problem being perpetrated against our Jewish brothers and sisters:

* A headline from here in America, on May 14th, states, “Senate expressly condemns antisemitism, after Democrat-led House ‘can’t bring itself’ to do the same. The article includes a video worth watching.” [1]

* From the New York Times, BERLIN – “The director of Berlin’s Jewish Museum quit his post on Friday amid criticism that he had become too politically involved in the battle over the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement against Israel, which was recently designated as anti-Semitic by the German Parliament.” [2]
* The Times of Israel – Labour lawmakers rap return of [UK] MP who said party too apologetic on anti-Semitism [3]

Rabbi Stephen H. Wise

I want to close by quoting a statement made after WWI by Rabbi Stephen H. Wise during his speech to the City Club of Rochester, New York. Having just returned from an exploratory trip to Europe, he graphically described the terrible breakdown that followed the Great War. Now and then he would punctuate his description by this striking sentence, “And if you Christians had been true to the teachings of the great Nazarene (i.e., Jesus), this would never have happened!” What an indictment. Will we learn from history?

There are many more examples that demonstrate the continually growing antisemitism in America and around the world. Be strong. Reject hate. Stand with Jesus. Stand with the Jews.

  1. https://www.foxnews.com/politics/senate-passes-resolution-condemning-anti-semitism-after-house-cant-bring-itself-to-do-same
  2. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/14/world/europe/berlin-jewish-museum-director-quits-bds.html
  3. https://www.timesofisrael.com/labour-lawmakers-rap-return-of-mp-who-said-party-too-apologetic-on-anti-semitism/

Photo by Sander Crombach on Unsplash

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