Not long ago, I shared a post concerning the Good Samaritan and a different perspective I had never seen. In fact, like The Good Samaritan Parable, there are many events and parables in the life of Yeshua that point to the Two Stick Prophecy and the restoration of All Yisrael in one way or another. I was reminded this morning of another that is likely much more familiar to us. Here are my thoughts on some of the details..
Luke 17:11While He was on the way to Jerusalem, He was passing [a]between Samaria and Galilee.12 As He entered a village, ten leprous men who stood at a distance met Him;13 and they raised their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master, have mercy on us!”14 When He saw them, He said to them, “Go and show yourselves to the priests.” And as they were going, they were cleansed.15 Now one of them, when he saw that he had been healed, turned back, glorifying God with a loud voice,16 and he fell on his face at His feet, giving thanks to Him. And he was a Samaritan.17 Then Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But the nine—where are they?18 [b]Was no one found who returned to give glory to God, except this foreigner?”19 And He said to him, “Stand up and go; your faith [c]has made you well.”
A theme that has been coming up over and over in recent reading and study is Ezekiel’s Dry Bones. Last weekend in our study of Genesis 47:28- 50:26 we again ran into the Dry Bones. (Long story…)
Christendom has been feeling some of the same call in a broad sense as exampled by this terrific Lauren Daigle song, ‘Come Alive.’ ….but, who are the Dry Bones?
37 The hand of the Lord was upon me, and He brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of the valley; and it was full of bones.2 He caused me to pass among them round about, and behold, there were very many on the surface of the valley; and lo, they were very dry.3 He said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, You know.”4 Again He said to me, “Prophesy over these bones and say to them, ‘O dry bones, hear the word of theLord.’5 Thus says the Lord God to these bones, ‘Behold, I will cause breath to enter you that you may come to life.6 I will put sinews on you, make flesh grow back on you, cover you with skin and put breath in you that you may come alive; and you will know that I am the Lord.’”
This is the time of year when most of Christendom is focused on the advent of the Messiah of Israel, commonly called Christmas and the birth of Jesus Christ. In churches and in homes Scriptures from the Old and New Testament will be read that detail the coming of the Long Expected One. Most of us have heard these verses so many times that they almost flow off of our tongues as they are being read to us… We know the flow and the rhythm to the point that they offer incredible comfort. A halcyon warmth embraces us and we float on the river of sweet memories and blessed promises. But, do we really pay attention?
Have you ever noticed that there are some verses in these beloved Scriptures that really really challenge the historical understanding of the story and at times confront even major tenets in the theological narrative of Christendom? Over the next week I hope to explore a few of these difficult verses, not to be antagonistic, but to ask, ‘shouldn’t we look a little deeper, and through an Hebraic lens, to understand the context of Scripture and rightly understand who we are in the Messiah?’ Please take a few minutes and ‘walk with me’ as we consider some of these verses over the next few days.
Christendom generally teaches that the Law (Torah, God’s Instructions) was too heavy a burden for people to bear and since nobody could keep it this created the need for Jesus to come ‘fulfill’ it for us. Then, we read in the ‘Christmas story,’
Luke 1:5 There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth. 6 And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.
Lately, I have been pondering anew my nationality, citizenship and Kingdom affiliation. Most would consider me an American citizen, of American descent, however, I do not. Yes, I was born here, to American citizens who come from families that arrived on this shore in the 1640s and 1740s, but I no longer consider this my home, or my nation.
In the very late 1980’s and early 1990’s I served in the US Army and was deployed both to Korea and Saudi Arabia/Iraq. I had previously lived for six years on the missionfield in Colombia, South America with my bush pilot father and midwife mother. The combination of the two experiences gave me a very different picture of the United States than the average nationalist. I saw things from an external vantage point that caused the patriotic patina to begin wearing off.
While I still appreciate this country and the blessings it affords, I have come to the very real conclusion that this is not my home. Christendom teaches rightly that we are citizens of a higher Kingdom and for years I sought to understand this, being forced to wait for something on the other side of the veil of death. Once I began to search the Scriptures from an Hebraic perspective, I learned several very important things:
The Kingdom, to which Yeshua referred, is not some other-worldly, post Judgment/resurrection, ethereal heavenlies entity, though its fullness will be manifest after the final Judgment. Rather, The Kingdom is the much prophesied restoration of the tent of David with Him, the Son of David, seated on the throne, and that prior to Judgment Day.
Being ‘grafted in,’ does not make me part of something other than Israel (the Church?), rather, it makes me part of Israel. (The Church hasn’t replaced Israel, rather, when Scripture is rightly understood, those coming to faith in Messiah are grafted into Israel.)
Israel is composed of two distinct parts that are ‘echad,’ unified: The House of Israel and the House of Judah, the Northern and Southern Kingdoms, respectively, each with its own destiny/path toward the final restored Tent of David.