Friday, March 15, 2013

DUAL COVENANT DECEPTION

 
2 Corinthians 3:6 NLT
He has enabled us to be ministers of his new covenant. This is a covenant not of written laws, but of the Spirit. The old written covenant ends in death; but under the new covenant, the Spirit gives life.



Sometimes it astounds me how many false doctrines regarding God's heart and plan for the Jewish people are preached and find acceptance in the church. Although, since this issue of God's plan and destiny for Israel and the Jewish people is foundational to so many aspects of what we believe about God's character and about his plan for the nations, I shouldn't be surprised that the deceiver has recently introduced a new deception called "Dual-Covenant Theology". People who ascribe to this doctrine believe that the Christians have one covenant and the Jewish people have another covenant, just as "viable" as the one Christians have. It's a convenient way for these people to "bless" Israel while removing the offense of the Gospel and the persecution that follows preaching it. They not only preach that believers in Jesus are not obligated to preach the Good News to the Jewish people, but that they would be remiss in doing so! Where they find this in Scripture I have no idea. You would have to not only throw out the 9th, 10th and 11th chapters of Romans, but you would have to throw Paul, his heart to reach his people with the Gospel, and his conversion experience out with them! If Paul already had a covenant, then why did he need to be saved? Why was he knocked off his horse? Why did he repent? Why was he baptized? Why did he preach to the Jews?  And to make it more personal...why did I have to receive my Messiah? Let me tell you how I was saved, what I was saved from and what I was saved into. Hopefully my testimony will convince anyone who is considering the Dual-Covenant theology to re-think and realize the error of it. I had a conversation with someone who believed in a dual covenant. He said to me, "I would never preach to a Jew! They are all going to be saved in a day!" My reply? "I'm certainly glad the person who preached the gospel to me didn't believe that!"

I was born in Grand Forks, North Dakota; not exactly a Jewish mecca. But, there were around thirty Jewish families and there was a synagogue.  I was raised to love the idea of being Jewish, but didn't have much understanding of why I was Jewish, except that my parents were, and their parents were, and so on. Around the time I was twelve, I desired to attend services every Shabbat, but my parents, leaning a bit more toward being secular than religious, didn't see the need to attend except for the High Holy Days and the Jewish festival days. So, I would often light the Sabbath candles by myself on Friday nights. I was seeking God and would pray to Him, mostly because I was plagued with questions and fears about what happens after we die. I would beg God not to let any of my family members die, bringing each one of their names before him every night.
One day, when I was around thirteen, I read an article in a magazine about reincarnation. Being desperate for some kind of hope after this life, I embraced this belief. Later, that opened the door for  exploration of Eastern religions, astrology, numerology, transcendental meditation, etc. But, in the midst of all of this spiritual odyssey, I felt very lost. Nothing ever gave me peace. Nothing I did, be it stare into candles or sit in a lotus position saying "Ommm" touched the emptiness I felt in my soul. When I was seventeen, I wrote a poem that described this emptiness I felt:

These empty words could never tell
The language that is known in hell.
These empty thoughts could never find
A peaceful place within this mind.
These empty tears could never flow
As far as this despair can go.
This emptiness cannot portray
The emptiness I feel today.

At this point I'd like to ask that if I, as a Jew, already had my own "covenant" with God which would save me and bring me into relationship with God, why would I write a poem like that?

Another struggle I had was that I had no moral compass. I depended on the world to tell me what was right, acceptable and good and what wasn't. Unfortunately, the world I lived in didn't have a moral compass either. Drugs, promiscuity, rebellion, lying...all of it was deemed "Okay" in my generation. I had no sense of right and wrong, evil and good. I was only trying to survive emotionally and spiritually in a world that had things backwards. "Freedom" meant freedom to live a self-centered, self-gratifying life with no thought of how it would or could affect others.

Finally, when I was 18 years old, I actually looked up and asked God a question about my search for Him. I had come to a point where I realized that staring into candles wasn't making me a more humble, loving person. It was one night when I made a promise to myself that I wouldn't get into an argument with anyone in my family. I made it through dinner just fine, but then my sister and I had to clean the kitchen. We got into such a huge screaming match we were almost throwing pots and pans at each other! I went into my bedroom, slammed the door and for the first time looked up and asked God a question that I had been depending on books by gurus to answer. My question was, "How long does this take?"  I was worried I had a few more "lives" to go through to get spiritual enough to know Him! Immediately, I was given an answer. A thought came to me with such clarity, it was almost like a voice spoke inside of me. And the voice said, "Do God's will." I had never considered that before. So, very seriously, I stood up and quietly prayed, "I want Your will done in my life from now on." The next day an old friend called me and told me he wanted to go out to coffee with me. I hadn't seen him in months and couldn't imagine why he wanted to get together.  As we sat in the booth of the restaurant later that evening, he told me he had become born-again and it had totally changed his life. In my infinite wisdom I replied, "That's nice. There are as many ways to God as there are men." But he told me something that would change my life forever. "No," he said. "Jesus said 'I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." (John 14:6)  Well, I was pretty spiritually sensitive since I was constantly searching out spiritual experiences, and when he said that scripture verse and quoted what Jesus had said, I saw something bright white in front of my eyes cut through something grey, like a veil. I said to him, "What? He didn't say THIS is the way, or THAT is the way? He said "I AM the Way?"  My friend replied, "Yes. He said that many would try to climb up from other ways, but they were as thieves and robbers." I put this together with what I had just prayed about God's will in my life. I went home hoping this wasn't the way to get to God. I knew if it was,  it was going to cause all sorts of trouble for me with my family!  But I wanted to know God more than anything. So I prayed, "Jesus...if you are the only way to God, then come into my heart." And He did! The next morning everything looked and felt different. It wasn't long before I realized what it was. I could tell the difference between right and wrong for the first time in my life! I had a choice! I could choose what was right because I could see! I had light to see by! I remember thinking how a person born blind would never know they were blind until they saw for the first time. That's what it was like for me! And love? I felt God's love for me and my love for Him in a way I'd never known was possible. I was like a young girl who had just fallen madly in love with someone! (And I've been madly in love with Him ever since!)

The Lord showed me there are three keys to salvation for the Jews in the way I came to know Him.
The first is that I turned to the Lord and asked Him a question about how to find Him. 2 Corinthians 3:15-16  says speaking of the Jewish people "Even to this day when Moses is read, a veil covers their hearts. But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away."

The second was that I told God I wanted His will done in my life.  In John 7:17 Yeshua said, "If any man seeks to do God's will, he will know whether My words come from Me or from God."

 And the third was that I accepted Him on an "if" basis. I didn't know "if" He was the Messiah, but "if" He was, then I was willing to receive Him into my heart and life. And He honored that prayer and saved me.

So, when sharing with a Jewish person, encourage them to have a conversation with God, and ask Him what the best way is to draw close to Him. 

You can also ask them if they would want God's will done in their life. If so, you can ask them to pray that with you. It will give them ears to hear God's Word and know it is from God. That is what happened to me. That is why the Lord didn't come to me and say, "Jesus is the Jewish Messiah". He just told me, "Do God's will." Then I had ears to hear!

You can ask a Jewish person another question. "IF Jesus is the Messiah, do you want Him? IF he is the only way to God, would you want to follow Him?"  Because if they receive Him on that basis, He will show up and make Himself real to them, just as He did for me! 

Again, I thank God that my friend who shared the news of my Messiah with me hadn't been falsely taught that you should never witness to a Jewish person. Because I would have missed out on a relationship with God, a new beginning, forgiveness and cleansing of my sins, the joy of knowing how loved I am and the assurance that I  have eternal life.  Please, don't withhold these beautiful gifts of salvation from a Jewish soul. It's easy to say "I love Israel. I bless Israel. I respect the Jewish people." The hard part is being willing to endure the backlash and persecution that often come with sharing the Messiah with them. But Paul thought it was worth it. As you read about his ministry, see how often he went to the synagogues to share the good news of Yeshua with his brethren. And see what happened to him as a result! But it was all worth it to him to see some saved. He even said he made much of his ministry to the Gentiles in order to see some of the Jewish people find the Jewish Messiah.

Don't be fooled. Don't be deceived. The salvation of the Jews and their receiving their Messiah with open arms is what it will take for Yeshua to return to Jerusalem. He told them in Matthew 23:29
"For I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’”  Let us all pray and labor to that end. For it is God's desire, and it was Yeshua's when He wept over Jerusalem, to gather the Jewish children under His wings. Let's all work to help give Him the desire of His heart.
 
Until next time,
 
Shalom.
 








3 comments:

  1. Thanks Nancy as always for unveiling your heart and sharing His words with the body.

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  2. Nancy,

    Thank you for sharing your insights. I really appreciate all that I have learned in the last 12+ years from interacting with and being around Messianic believers, like yourself. This writing you shared is another good example of something I wouldn't be aware of or probably even consider on my own.

    God's blessings on you and your family, Kirby

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