THE JEWS AND THE GOSPEL: can the gap be bridged?

963
"The Passover" Painting by Elhanan ben-Avraham

That is a daunting question. We are a stiff-necked and very smart folk, often tormented by Christianity for the last 2000 years, and so we tend to think: ‘If that is the good news, then what the heck’s the bad news?  Nothing, nobody, no argument could have convinced me short of a direct encounter, after a long search, with the Lord Himself. But that is me. After that encounter I spoke with my Jewish family and got nowhere fast.  Then my wife and I prayed daily for them for years, and demonstrated to them that we had not betrayed our Jewish heritage or calling, we had not converted to another religion, but were now Jews in the truest sense of the word, serving the living Creator.  We kept our heritage intact, the Sabbath and the festivals of God and His commandments, just as did all the early followers of Yeshua, who said, “Salvation is of the Jews.” Being himself a Jew, he will return as the same King of the Jews, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah.  And yes, all my family came to Him as the Spirit of God confirmed our testimony.  It’s a tough nut to crack, but “Not by power, nor by might, but by my spirit, says YHVH.”

At a time when multiple gods were worshipped by the nations of the world, the Jewish people were commissioned to be the witnesses of the revolutionary concept that God is one- and only. That is echad– the Hebrew number one– not two or three or ten.  Unto this day that is the commission of the Jewish people, many who have died for that principle.  For nearly two millennia various forms of Christianity have used every device and argument, including force, to convince the Jews that God is indeed three– the Trinity, but that has not succeeded with the Jewish people.* The 2000-year experiment of attempting to ‘evangelize’ and convince the Jews has been for the most part a dismal failure.  If Yeshua (Jesus) is indeed the promised and hoped-for Messiah of the Jewish people, then it will be the sovereignty of God to reveal Himself.  Our job is to familiarize ourselves and others in depth with the Biblical Scriptures in their original context, and “not place a stumbling block before the blind” (Leviticus 19:14) or to convert them to another religion and its practices and interpretations, but instead in prayer and understanding  “Build up, build up, prepare the road! Remove the obstacles out of the way of my people” (Isaiah 57:14), and “Make ready the way of the Lord.”

*The word “Trinity” is a human construct that didn’t exist as such until coined after the Gentile Christian council of Nicea in 325 AD, attempting to capture and define for the limited human mind an ultimate reality that cannot be grasped entirely, or adequately reduced to words, nor is it meant to be.  The Son has informed us, “God is spirit” and “the Father is greater than I,” and always directed prayer to the Father, his God, as did he instruct his disciples in what is called the Lord’s Prayer, and as did all the Apostles.  The Son came forth from the Father, not vice versa, to execute the will of the Father, not his own, and ultimately the Son will turn the kingdom over to the Father.  He is the untainted image of God, but God is not in the image of man.  It is the Father who delegates, sends, empowers and anoints His Son as king, and raised him from the dead.  It is in the Son’s name that we have access to the Father, and in him and through his divine work are we returned to the Father.  For clarity, Isaiah describes the Messiah as “the arm of YHVH” (53:1).  The oneness of God is paramount to the Jew.

Elhanan

Jerusalem 12-2019