Sunday, March 25, 2018

644. Summarizing the Scripture (Part 15): What the Teachings of Jesus Were Meant to Accomplish

Generally speaking, the Bible talks about two kinds of people — Jews and Gentiles. Jesus said He came to minister to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. The book of Galatians states He was born of a woman, born under the law in order to redeem those who were under the law. They needed to be redeemed from the curse the law brought. This wasn’t a ministry extended to us who were born outside of the Jewish race. Gentiles were never given the law. Many of the teachings of Jesus were not meant to be considered as Christian doctrine under a New Covenant. But rather, Jesus was often elevating or magnifying the law so the Jews could see it for what it really was, which was the requirement to keep it perfectly… it was impossible for them to enter life through those commands within the first covenant. It was meant to close their mouths and stop their boasting. Occasionally, Jesus would point to the new and better covenant that would be given to all people after His death, and both Jew and Gentile would become one, grafted into Himself.

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  1. Hey gentlemen :) While I agree that your main points are valid and helpful as always, I had a bit to add that I learned regarding the Samaritan woman and your conclusion that Jesus was basically reluctant to help her because she was a Gentile.

    This is not so. While he was sent to Israel, he was not adverse to ministering to anyone who came to him- if they did it honestly.

    If he was in fact reluctant just due to her being Gentile, then he would have also resisted the centurion who asked for healing for his servant, because a Roman centurion is as Gentile (and immoral!) as they come, yet Jesus was immediately fully prepared to go with the centurion.

    The difference between them lies in the way the woman approached Jesus. She addressed him as "son of David" - affecting a Jewish title she didn't have claim to use. Basically she tried to appear (more) Jewish in order to gain approval. He refused to reward that until she able to approach him as she really was- even though it might have offended her to point out he knew exactly who she was.

    If he had given her what she asked when she was pretending to be what she was not, people would forever have felt justified in affecting Jewish or religious behavior, wearing a mask essentially, in order to appease, appeal to or earn God's favor.

    I think this is an important point to note, so we know we never have to fake it to get God's attention or favor! :)

    1. Hi Connie. I don't think "reluctant" would be the best word to describe the attitude of Jesus when it came to ministering to those outside the Jewish race. One point I tried to make on these podcasts with this Gentile woman was that Jesus never refused Gentiles, He just didn't seek them out because the first purpose of His ministry was to Israel, under the law within the first covenant, and to redeem them from it. Salvation would come to them first and of course, Gentiles as well when the New Covenant began after the cross. But your points are well taken. Therefore, if we came across on the podcast as though Jesus was resisting or struggling with whether to help Gentiles in need who approached Him during His earthly ministry, that wasn't really the intention. As you know, a big part of our intent was to make known that much of what Jesus taught and said before the cross was for Israel under the first covenant, and not always for believers who would abide inside of a new and better covenant.