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Volume 28 - Page 109 of 217 Index | Zoom | |
It is evident from the testimony of James, and of Paul, that the inclusion of the Gentile
in the blessings of the gospel and the Abrahamic promise, was no mystery but the
consistent witness of Moses and the Prophets.
Both these authorities are quoted in Rom. 10: with regard to the inclusion of the
"First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by
a foolish nation will I anger you. But Esaias is very bold, and saith, I was found of
them that sought Me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after Me"
(Rom. 10: 19, 20).
With reference to the gospel, the Jew and the Gentile stand level. Both are sinners,
and "there is no difference", either in the matter of guilt or of salvation (Rom. 3: 22, 23;
10: 12). When we come to dispensational privileges, however, we find, during the early
ministry of the Apostle, that the Jew is "first". In Rom. 11:, after showing that the
believing Gentiles, equally with the believing Jews, are Abraham's seed and heirs, the
"And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive, wert grafted
in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree; boast
not against the branches" (Rom. 11: 17, 18).
This dispensational distinction we must keep well in mind, for while it lasted and until
the middle-wall was broken down, no church of the One Body with the threefold equality
of Eph. 3: 6 was possible.
In Rom. 15:, the Apostle speaks of the earthly ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ as
being concerned with the "circumcision":
"Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to
confirm the promises made unto the fathers" (Rom. 15: 8).
This testimony is explicit. The "Gospels" are primarily concerned with the
"circumcision" and with the confirmation of promises made "unto the fathers". We have
already seen, however, that in the great promise made to Abraham the Gentiles were
included, with Israel as the channel of blessing. Consequently Rom. 15: 8 is followed
by 15: 9-12:
"And that the Gentiles might glorify God for His mercy: as it is written . . . . . and
again He saith . . . . . And again . . . . . And again" (Rom. 15: 9-12).
Apparently no opposition was anticipated to the exclusiveness of Rom. 15: 8, for the
Apostle had already alluded to the strength of Jewish prejudice by asking, "Is He the God
of the Jews only?" Today, however, the whole aspect of things is reversed. Anyone who
dares to believe Rom. 15: 8 and teach that the Gospels are primarily "Jewish" must
prepare to meet criticism and opposition, while in most congregations the hope of the Jew
is so far forgotten or spiritualized that to-day one would have to ask "Is He the God of the