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Israel: The Seed of Abraham
Thousands of years ago there was a man named Abraham who lived in the land of Ur of the Chaldeans. As time went by, he eventually settled in Haran with his wife, Sarah, and his nephew, Lot. It was in Haran that this 75-year-old man heard a voice speak to his very soul, “Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you.” It was the voice of the Creator of all things — the voice of God. This righteous man had no idea why he was told to do this, but he took Sarah, Lot, and all of his possessions and set out for the land of Canaan in order to start a nation — a whole new society which would be dedicated to serving God. A covenant was formed between God and Abraham and it was promised that his descendants would form a great and powerful nation that would be a light to the entire world — Israel.
As time went by, this new society was given a high moral standard to uphold — laws which were given to them by their God. The nation was to be made up of twelve tribes of people who would love their God with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength. They would have their own identity as a people, with certain celebrations and festivals year round to worship their Creator and give thanks to Him.
Not many years went by before Israel’s desire to love and please their Creator began to fade away. They began adopting the immoral ways of the nations of the world: serving their gods and worshipping their idols. Prophets arose to warn the people that if they didn’t change their ways, the society would perish.
God saw that the society that was once a demonstration of love and righteousness on the earth was now a stale corpse. He wanted a nation for His own possession so greatly that He sent His Son to the earth. Yahshua walked the earth to tell Israel what the Kingdom of His Father is like. He explained mysteries that were hidden for thousands of years, like how all mankind could live forever without ever having to taste death. Can you imagine?
This man, Yahshua, was the Messiah. He walked up to ordinary men like Peter and John and told them to follow Him. These men heard the same message Abraham received millennia earlier and they responded the same way he responded — they dropped everything and left their old way of life behind in order to rebuild the society God always wanted. They put all their trust in Yahshua and listened to what He said about love, peace, and how to be perfected in unity.
The disciples followed Him everywhere He went. They became a wandering community where true love totally consumed them. He labored over these twelve men for three and a half years and taught them until the day He was put to death by the very nation He had come to save. He was beaten beyond recognition, spat upon, mocked, and even had dung thrown in His face. Then He was nailed to a cross to die. All this came upon Him because He revealed the truth and loved mankind. He then became a living demonstration of all that He spoke: He rose from the dead after three days and nights. He defeated the greatest enemy of man: Death.
He returned to heaven to be with His Father after showing Himself to His disciples, and sent out His own holy, pure Spirit to live in the hearts of those who loved Him. The day this happened, three thousand men and women heard God’s message through the Holy Spirit living in this new Israel and left their old lives behind to become disciples.
Eventually there were twelve tribes of disciples, brothers and sisters, devoting themselves to loving Him with all their heart, mind, soul, and strength, and being the most perfect work of love, peace, and unity on the planet. The glory of this nation surpassed the old, since the Father’s Holy Spirit lived inside each disciple.
The glory of God’s society was short-lived, however. Savage wolves came in and deceived the sheepfold. The disciples’ red-hot love for God’s purpose became lukewarm. Their belief in God became stale and insincere — a mind belief with no deep conviction of the heart to cause true love. Slowly the brothers began living their own independent lives, no longer sharing all possessions in common and caring for each other. They ceased to be God’s people.
In the midst of all this Yahshua appeared to the apostle John in his old age on the island of Patmos. John received from Him a revelation, a prophecy, about the end of all things. It was a vision of what would happen in the future. John saw that in the last days the nation of Israel would be built again out of the dust.
He saw twelve tribes of brothers and sisters caring for each other in a way never seen before. This society was made up of ordinary people from all walks of life who left everything to become disciples of Yahshua the Messiah. This holy nation would be what God has always desired — a royal priesthood.
It is now almost 1900 years after the spiritual Israel of the early church was destroyed, and that same life is now being restored. It is a whole new society the earth has never seen before. God has called us in the same way Abraham was called, and we have abandoned our old lives in the world system to find a better life.
Deep down in our hearts, we knew that the world was headed in the wrong direction and we needed a way out of the perverse world system. We needed a place where we could let go of our own selfish desires and ambitions and take up a whole new identity. Then we met a Savior who was worthy of our whole lives — Yahshua.
What about you? Do you believe that you can change the world by your own strength? Look around you — do you enjoy being a part of the system which you viciously fight against? Do you enjoy your middle-class comforts while you cry out against the greed and selfishness of the system that provides them? Are you saying that you serve the God and His Son and take part in the same world system that brutally killed Him? Double standards are easy to stand up for, aren’t they? They allow you to say one thing and act the opposite way. Yahshua, the Son of God, had standards which could never be reasoned away. They had to be acted upon.
Throughout history God has longed for a body of people who would stand by the truth and live it out with each other. It has always been God’s heart to have a special, chosen society who would represent His character to the other nations of the earth.
It would be absurd to think someone could serve God without being in God’s own nation. It would be like being born and raised an American citizen but calling yourself a citizen of Mars — a mere fantasy. As funny as this may sound, many people call themselves believers, yet do not live under the rule of the One in whom they claim to believe.
Our Master Yahshua said to enter through the narrow gate. He told people that the gate is small and the road is narrow that leads to life, and only a few find it. There is also a wide gate and a broad road which leads to destruction and many, many people enter through it — the whole world in fact. Stop and look at where you are right now. Consider how those around you are living their lives. Is there really any difference? We invite you to step foot on the narrow path and get off the broad road. We invite you to see the society — the nation that God always desired.