Our Debt

 

Our Debt

 

 

To say Christians owe a debt to the Jew is an understatement. The foundation upon which New Testament faith rests is the Hebrew Bible. The Tenach, or the Hebrew Bible (Old Testament), is comprised of three major divisions. Torah the five books of Moses; Nevi’im the Prophets and Ketuvim the Writings.

All that Christians hold dear is derived from Judaism in some form. From the pews, altar, pulpit, baptism and officers of the church, including our reverence of the Scriptures stems from first century Judaism.

Jesus was Jewish. The Bible is a Jewish book written by Jewish writers (with one or two exceptions), about a Jewish Messiah who will bring redemption and a kingdom of universal peace. The Jewish apostles took the gospel to the Gentiles. Subsequently, all Gentiles who attend church on Sunday can thank the Jews for bringing them the message of Jesus the Messiah.

Believers owe a debt of gratitude and thanksgiving to the Jew. We can do this in part by learning about the Jewish culture, religion, and how to communicate the gospel message effectively and lovingly.

Both Jewish and Gentile People Need JesusRomans 1:16 states, For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Wherever Paul traveled he would address the Jews in that community first, then the Gentiles.

  1. Jewish people need Messiah. All people, regardless of nationality or ethnic origin are under sin (Romans 3:9). There is not a separate method of salvation for the Jew. All people, both Jew and Gentile are guilty before God and are in need of redemption (Romans 3:19).
  2. Jesus commands us to share the gospel with all people (Mark 16:15). Some Christians, even within the evangelical community, hold to a presupposition that the Jewish community has no need of hearing the gospel. And yet, Jesus commands us to go and communicate to both Jew and Gentile.
  3. The Apostle Paul reveals his burden for the Jewish people in Romans chapters nine, ten and eleven. He expresses that having a concern for Israel’s salvation is part of God’s plan for the human race. He emphasized that God has not cast away His people. God loves them with an everlasting love. Paul also enforced the reality that the Gentiles owe a great debt to the Jews. The non-Jew has been the recipient of the Word of God, the hope of Israel through the Messiah and eternal life with God because of the faithfulness of Jewish people taking the gospel to them. The great apostle stresses that there will be a day when Israel will become God’s witnesses to the world, therefore, having a special place in God's program.

Blessings For Those Who Bless Israel

And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee. Gen. 12:3To discover the richness of the Jewish roots of Christianity and to touch the lives of Jewish people is to be richly blessed by God. God chose Israel simply because He loved her, For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God: the Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth. The Lord did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: but because the Lord loved you…” Deut. 7:6-8

The blessing is six fold (Gen. 12:2,3):

  1. I will make of thee a great nation. Through Abraham came the Jewish nation. Also, through Abraham came a spiritual heritage to those of like faith. Plus, through Ishmael, came the Arab nations.
  2. I will bless thee. This was evident through the earthly blessings he received along the way. Plus, he was considered a friend of God (Jas 2:23).
  3. And make thy name great. Abraham’s name is respected within the Jewish, Moslem and Christian communities. Along with the name of Christ, Abraham is one of the most widely known throughout the world.
  4. And thou shalt be a blessing. This expands throughout the world of both Jews and Gentiles. Abraham is an example of a man of great faith in God.
  5. And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee. History verifies this statement. Those individuals and nations who helped Israel were blessed and those who stood against Israel were indeed cursed.
  6. And in thee shall all the families of the earth be blessed. This promise projects the coming of the Messiah from the seed of Abraham and considers all that Messiah is and will be. Below is a list of some of the messianic prophecies fulfilled in Jesus of Nazareth:

Messianic Prophecies

Prophecy OT Location NT Fulfillment
Seed of a woman Gen. 3:15 1 Jn. 3:18; Gal. 4:4
Seed of Abraham Gen. 12:3 Matt. 1:1
Tribe of Judah Gen. 49:10 Heb.7:14 Matt. 1
Seed of David Ps. 89:4; 132:11 Lk.1:22; Acts2:29
Born in Bethlehem Micah 5:2 Matt. 2; Luke 2
Virgin Birth Isa. 7:14 Matt. 1; Luke 1
Like Moses Deut. 18:15,18 John 7; Acts 3
Triumphal Entry Zech. 9:9 Matt. 21; John 12
Rejected Isa. 53; Psa. 118 Jn. 1; Matt. 26
Betrayed Psa. 41:9 Matt. 26; Mark 14
30 pieces of silver Zech 11:12 Matt. 26
Forsaken Zech. 13:7 Matt. 26
Condemned Isa. 53:8 Matt. 27; Lk. 23
Silent Isa. 53:7 Matt. 27; Lk. 23
Smitten, spat upon Isa. 50:6; Mic. 5:1 Matt. 26; Lk. 22
Mocked Psa. 22:7,8 Matt. 28:38-43
Crucifixion Psa. 22:14,16,17 Matt. 27; Jn. 19
Suffer with transgressors Isa. 53:12 Matt. 27; Lk. 23
Casting of Lots Psa. 22:18 Matt. 27; Mk. 15
No broken bones Exo. 12:46 John 19:31-36
Sacrificial Death Isa. 53: 5-12 John 1;11; Acts 10
Rise Again Psa. 16:10 Acts 2; Mark 16
At God’s right hand Psa. 110:1 Mark 16; Luke 24

Thank you for partnering with Louise and me! Your prayers and financial donations do make a difference in the lives of thousands within Israel and the surrounding areas.

Your gift is greatly needed today. May God bless you as you bless God’s ancient people Israel, through Israel Today Ministries!

Until He comes, we areTogether Under His Wings.