Casting Out the Bondwoman--Part 3
Aug 04, 2009
The bondwoman (Jerusalem) was unable to attain the promise of Sonship (the promised seed), because even as Isaac could only come through Sarah, so also must the corporate Son come through the New Covenant.
This was meant to teach us clearly that the promises of God cannot come through the works-based Old Covenant, for it is based upon man's ability to keep his promise of obedience to God. This, Paul tells us, is an impossibility, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. It is not that the high standard of God is somehow at fault. One cannot blame the divine law for our inability to be obedient. God is not going to lower His standards to accommodate sinful man. Instead, He maintains the standard, but finds another way to attain to it. That way is presented by the New Covenant, where Jesus came to fulfill all righteousness, present Himself as the spotless Lamb of God, and then pay the penalty of sin for the whole world.
He was the Son of God, and we may access the promises by faith in Him (His sacrificial work on the cross) and by identifying with Him as His Body--the sons of God.
He came to Judah to do this work, as prophesied in Micah 5:2. Yet He was rejected because the leaders disagreed with His peaceful methods, and because they knew that most of them would be "fired" if He were proclaimed the Messiah-King. So they decided to usurp His inheritance, saying (Matt. 21:38), "This is the Heir; come, let us kill Him and seize His inheritance."
The verdict at the end of Jesus' parable is found in verse 43,
"Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and be given to a nation producing the fruit of it."
In Luke 19 we are given further details in another parable that Jesus told.
(12) He said therefore, A certain nobleman went to a distant country to receive a kingdom for himself, and then return. (13) And he called ten of his slaves and gave them ten minas and said to them, Do business with this until I come back. (14) But his citizens hated him and sent a delegation after him, saying, We do not want this man to reign over us."
The nobleman in the parable is obviously Jesus Himself, who went to a distant country (heaven) to receive a kingdom for Himself. King Herod had done something like this back in 40 B.C., when he went to Rome to obtain authorization to be King of Judea. He received that authorization and then returned with an army to take his place on the throne. So also we find Jesus being rejected, but going to heaven to appeal His case.
The "citizens" (of Judea) sent word (by prayer) to God saying, "We do not want this man to reign over us." Hence, we have the conflict and the background for both comings of Christ.
The parable also speaks of Jesus' servants, or "slaves," who were given various amounts of "money" and told to "do business." These represent the Christian believers, who are given various gifts to see what they might do with them. Those who use what they are given to increase the assets of the Kingdom will be rewarded accordingly. Those who bury their assets in fear, or who think that Jesus is a hard taskmaster (Though Christians, they don't really know His character!), these lose their reward.
Then finally, the parable turns to the fate of those who opposed Him as King.
(27) But these enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them, bring them here and slay them in my presence. (28) And after He had said these things, He was going on ahead, ascending to JERUSALEM.
This prophesies of the time of Christ's return, after the last appeal has been filed in the divine court case to determine who is really called. This execution occurs after the great Judge has awarded Jesus Christ with the authorization to rule the Kingdom. It occurs after the usurpers have run out of appeals, and after Jesus has been vindicated as the true Heir. This correlates with David's second coming, after his throne was usurped by Absalom. You recall that Absalom was killed at that time.
This prophesies that these "enemies" would be brought back to the place of their offence (Jerusalem), not to be appointed Jesus' cabinet members to rule the world, but to be slain.
Christian Zionists tell us that many Jews are going back to the land in order to fulfill Bible prophecy. Most certainly, that is the case. They are returning so that a portion of them may fulfill Jesus' prophecy in Luke 19:27.
It is unfortunate that the Palestinian people do not understand this divine purpose, and so they have fought the Zionists for doing them great injustice. Certainly, such injustice has taken place and is ongoing, but they do not understand the bigger picture. The Zionists are not being brought to Palestine for their good, but so that they can be judged in the place of the original offence. They will be judged for not wanting Jesus Christ to reign over them.
Fortunately, it is not necessary for every non-Christian Jew in the world to go to Palestine for judgment. A representative number is sufficient to fall with Jerusalem. The Palestinians are fighting hard to remain in Jerusalem, while the Israeli government is busy building settlements there to push out the Palestinians.
What few realize is that God is actually being merciful to the Palestinian people, because He is forcing them out of the city before it is destroyed like a vessel that can never be repaired (Jer. 19:11). If the Palestinian people knew the prophecies and believed them, they would leave voluntarily. But like Abraham's nephew, Lot, who was reluctant to leave Sodom, so also are the Palestinians reluctant to leave Jerusalem. It is understandable, of course, but we are also told that "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge" (Hosea 5:6).
The underlying problem is that the Palestinians consider Jerusalem as their "mother," even as do the Jews and also Christian Zionists. Few people claim Sarah as their mother. In fact, for most of the Christian Zionists, it is a case of mistaken identity, for they think that Hagar is Sarah. They think Jerusalem is the "mother" of the Kingdom, and that Jerusalem is the place where all the promises will be fulfilled. Christian Zionists teach that a physical temple will be rebuilt there, which will first be the home of the "Antichrist," and later he will be kicked out and replaced by Jesus Christ, who will rule the world from the old Jerusalem.
Jesus will indeed rule from "Jerusalem," but the question is, WHICH JERUSALEM? Will Jesus take Hagar to be His lawfully wedded wife, producing a child of the flesh? Or will He take Sarah and bring forth the manifested sons of God?
As Christian believers, we are called (in part) to choose our mother. In accepting Jesus Christ, we have Him as our Father. Choose now your mother. Choose wisely, because this will determine whether you are identified with Ishmael or with Isaac.
If you choose Hagar as your mother, your father will be Abram. If you choose Sarah, your father will be Abraham. Ishmael was born from Abram; Isaac was born from Abraham (after his name change). The "H" was added to Abram's name to represent the "breath of God" to denote his children who will receive the fullness of the Spirit and become the manifested sons of God.
There is yet time to declare Sarah as your mother, if you have not already done so. One can hardly be a Christian Zionist and still expect to have Sarah as one's mother. It is not for me to judge, of course, but why take the risk by remaining in the Christian Zionist camp?
This is the third part of a series titled "Casting Out the Bondwoman." To view all parts, click the link below.
Dr. Stephen Jones