Monday, November 18, 2013

Our Unity Depends on Changed Perspectives

True unity is in diversity, not in conformity.
— Rick Joyner
I love what Rick Joyner is saying here because for sure diversity sure puts unity to the test.

Another thing that Rick has taught over the years is how in order to cut off something evil you have to put the axe to the root of it. I believe that division in the international Church, at the root is the division as the Gentile church departed from the root of the faith - removing contact with the Messianic Jewish believers. Until this breach is dealt with as the root of divisions in the Body, the international Church will remain divided amongst themselves, not just divided from the Messianic part of the Body.

In fact, I think that in Romans 9-11 the apostle Paul was directly addressing what he knew prophetically would begin to unfold as more and more Gentiles came into the faith. It was inevitable that Gentiles would outnumber the Jewish believers, Paul was well aware of that prophetically because he is the one who is addressing what God's plan is in setting aside the nation of Israel in order to include all nations in salvation. This is the major theme of Romans 9-11 and Paul also backs this up elsewhere, like in his Ephesians 2 discussion of the one new man (Jew and Gentile) in Messiah.

As overjoyed as Paul was that the nations were coming to the knowledge of Messiah Yeshua, he was also devastated knowing that the Jews - according to the purposes of God - were in part blinded to that knowledge and could not come to Messiah until a much later season when they would return in numbers so great it would be seen as as a corporate return.

So Romans 9-11 was Paul laying out to the Gentile believers how they must care for and stay connected to the root of the faith which God planted in the Jews who followed Messiah Yeshua. He was laying out a way of looking at the situation which the international Church must adopt towards the Messianic Body of believers acknowledging them as true brothers in the Lord - not unsaved Israel, but those who are in the faith of Yeshua/Jesus. And seeing Israel through the eye of faith as Paul did - saying that the season would come when the Gentiles in Christ would reach a fulness (which I believe is a state of quality, not quantity; maturity not just numbers) where they are able to discern the plan of God regarding the setting aside of Israel, and God's return at long last to save Israel for eternal life in Messiah.

Pro-Israel Christians often fall desperately short of perceiving what God is up to with Israel. If they really understood, they would be rushing to befriend their Messianic Jewish brethren instead of pretending like they do not exist or have some kind of heresy attached to them as the unsaved Jews accuse them of. (The stumbling stone is Jesus, pro-Israel Christians. Wake up!)

Perhaps if the pro-Israel Christians would get it right, and understand how they are to relate to Israel as the apostle Paul laid out, then all the so-called cutting edge prophetic people who think Israel is nothing would also be able to see it.

There is a Remnant in the international Church that sees what God's plan is as the apostle Paul laid out in Romans 9-11. These are the ones who have come alongside Messianic ministries, and have reached out to the Body of Messiah in Israel.

Messianic ministries also have a part to play in how they orient the Christians who come into their midst. The Christians are not supposed to be coming to be made into Jewish wannabes. You may want to preserve the Jewishness of your congregation, but you will have to do it in a way that does not encourage Gentile Christians to adopt a Jewish facade! The apostles ruled on that in Acts 15 although many are violating that today. It is okay for Jews to be Jews and Gentile Christians to be Gentiles Christians.

These are some of the issues that are out of whack in the unity of the Body. When we begin to get our way of looking at Israel adjusted to what Paul said was exactly the case in Romans 9-11, then we will see the axe put to the root of divisions that exist in the Church. In the Ten Commandments, the first four commandments deal with our personal relationship with God and the final six have to do with our relationships with each other. If we will have unity with diversity, then we must deal with our viewpoint on Israel and especially the Jewish part of the Body of Christ.