Casting Out the Bondwoman--Part 2
Aug 01, 2009
Because the bondwoman (Hagar) is specifically identified with Jerusalem in Galatians 4:25, it is imperative that Christians understand how they should view that physical city. Paul is clear that Jerusalem is NOT our "mother," because verse 26 says, "But the Jerusalem above is free; she is our mother."
The word "our" is a reference to Paul and all other Christian believers, whether of Judah, Benjamin, or any other ethnic group that has declared allegiance to Jesus Christ, the rightful King of Judah and Heir to the throne.
Not only are we to consider the heavenly Jerusalem to be our "mother," we are also to actively "cast out the bondwoman." I have already shown how God moved His mailbox from Shiloh to Jerusalem and from there to the Temple made of living stones in the New Jerusalem. God had put His name at Shiloh first (Jer. 7:12), then He had transferred His name to Jerusalem (Jer. 7:14), and finally, He has transferred His name to our foreheads (Rev. 22:4). Nothing can be clearer, at least to a Christian who believes the New Testament.
In the days of Jeremiah, God hired the Babylonians to destroy the city and its temple in order to prove that His presence had been removed. In Jer. 27:6 God calls Nebuchadnezzar "My servant." So one cannot place the blame on Nebuchadnezzar for doing this. God takes full credit and even shows us His reasoning.
In 70 A.D. God did the same, but this time hired the Romans to destroy the city and its temple. In the parable of Matt. 22:1-7, Jesus says that the people who were invited to the feast refused to accept the invitation, and verse 6 says, "and the rest seized his slaves and mistreated them and killed them." This is an obvious reference to all the prophets over the centuries, culminating with Jesus Himself, who were killed in Jerusalem. Luke 13:33 says, "for it cannot be that a prophet should perish outside of Jerusalem."
And so the second round of destruction for Jerusalem--casting out the bondwoman--occurred in 70 A.D., in the manner that Jesus said in his parable in Matt. 22:7,
"But the king [God] was enraged and sent His armies, and destroyed those murderers, and set their city on fire."
Note that the Roman armies were said to be God's armies.
The killing of prophets throughout history was evidence that the son of the bondwoman was destined to persecute the son of the free woman, as Paul tells us in Gal. 4:29. And so Jesus said to that city in Luke 13:34,
"O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, just as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not have it!"
It is clear that the old city of Jerusalem is "Hagar," the bondwoman, and her offspring persecutes the son of the freewoman. This is still true today, for nothing has changed since then. Yet Christian Zionism attempts to give Hagar a face lift, and with much plastic surgery, they try to pass her off as the mother of Christianity.
A large part of the misunderstanding is due to the fact that most Christians are no longer taught biblical history, and so they do not really comprehend the distinction between Israel and Judah. In not seeing this distinction, they lump all of the promises to Israel into one basket and then hand the basket to Judah. They do not see that Judah had its own distinct calling (the scepter), while Israel, represented by the tribes of Joseph) held the Birthright (1 Chron. 5:1, 2).
And so when Christians read Jeremiah 18, where the Potter's vessel is "the house of Israel" (18:6), they assume that this is speaking of the Jewish people and that this new vessel being made is the present Zionist state called "Israel." They forget the very next prophecy, from Jer. 18:11 to the end of chapter 19, which is directed specifically at Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
Looking at the contrast between these two prophecies is a real eye opener. In the prophecy regarding the house of Israel, the potter saw that the first vessel was imperfect, so he beat down the wet clay and remade it into another vessel. The lesson is given in verse 6, "Can I not, O house of Israel, deal with you as this potter does?"
It is a good prophecy of the restoration of Israel--the "lost" ten tribes of the northern kingdom. These tribes were lost, even though they carried the Birthright. They were fulfilling the prophetic pattern of their father Joseph, who was "lost" in Egypt and presumed to be dead for many years. It was only after many years that Joseph was found (Gen. 45:28). So it is also with his descendants of the house of Israel.
While Joseph was lost, Judah was not lost. So also we find that the house of Judah was never lost in history, while Joseph was. The point is to say that these are two different brothers, and they represent two different nations: the house of Israel and the house of Judah. This is one of the most important keys in understanding Scripture and avoiding the siren's call to support the Zionists.
Jeremiah's second prophecy, beginning in 18:11, gives us an indictment upon Judah and Jerusalem. It begins this way:
"So now then, speak to the men of Judah and against the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, Thus says the Lord, Behold, I am fashioning calamity against you and devising a plan against you."
The rest of that chapter is the divine indictment for sin. Then in 19:1 God tells the prophet,
"Thus says the Lord, Go and buy a potter's earthenware jar, and take some of the elders of the people and some of the senior priests."
This is the counterpart to the prophecy about the house of Israel. The difference is that Israel was like wet clay that could be remade into another vessel. Judah, on the other hand, was like "a potter's earthenware jar" that had already been hardened in the fire.
The prophet was to take Judah's jar and smash it in the valley of the son of Hinnom (gehenna in the NT), while prophesying of the destruction of that nation and that city. Verses 10 and 11 say,
(10) Then you are to break the jar in the sight of the men who accompany you (11) and say to them, Thus says the Lord of hosts, Just so shall I break this people and this city, even as one breaks a potter's vessel, which cannot be repaired."
We may scrutinize the prophecy for any sign of hope or restoration, but there is none to be found. Not one word! While we know that wet clay can be remade into another vessel, there is no way to repair a smashed jar that has already been hardened into its shape. So also will God "break this people and this city."
Jerusalem was destroyed by the Babylonians in 586 B.C. and again by the Romans in 70 A.D. But each time it was rebuilt. It exists today as a rebuilt city. Hence, we can only conclude that Jeremiah's prophecy has yet another fulfillment, in which it will be destroyed in such a way that it can NEVER again be repaired.
Christian Zionists today have thought they were doing Jews a favor by purchasing plane tickets for them to imigrate to the Israeli state. They have thus helped to place more Jews in mortal danger. Worse yet, Christian Zionist preachers believe that there will be only 144,000 survivors after the coming holocaust in the Israeli state. Let's see. . . that means about 1/2 of one percent would survive. Of course, if Jews were to remain in other parts of the world, they would have a better change of survival.
Christian Zionists will be responsible before God for many Jewish deaths unless they repent. Pray that they do.
This is the second part of a series titled "Casting Out the Bondwoman." To view all parts, click the link below.
Dr. Stephen Jones