Beloved Family… throughout the Scriptures, our Heavenly Father reveals the profound depths of His love and concern for His humans. How could it be otherwise, since He designed and made us to live as His own personal image and likeness? A good example of God’s deep love and desire to be close to us is revealed through the anguish and pain of His Living Word, as He responds to the rejections that so many of His beloved chosen Jewish people continually inflict on Him:
“And you say, ‘If we’d been alive in the days of our forefathers, we wouldn’t have been partners with them in shedding the blood of the prophets.’ So you testify against yourselves, that you are sons of those who murdered the prophets. Fill up, then, the measure of your fathers! O snakes, you brood of vipers! How will you escape the condemnation of Gehenna?
“Because of this, behold, I’m sending you prophets and wise men and Torah scholars. Some of them you will kill and execute at the stake, and some of them you will scourge in your synagogues and persecute from city to city. And so, upon you shall come all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of righteous Abel to the blood of Zechariah son of Berechiah, whom you murdered between the Temple and the altar. Amen, I tell you, all these things will come upon this generation.”
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem who kills the prophets and stones those sent to her! How often I longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing! Look, your house is left to you desolate! For I tell you, you will never see Me again until you say, ‘Baruch ha-ba b’shem Adonai. Blessed is He (God’s Living Word made flesh) who comes in the Name of the Lord!’” (Matthew 23:30-39 TLV)
When Yeshua said, “Look, your house is left to you desolate!” despite what some have assumed and taught concerning His response, Yeshua’s words are not ‘a good example of an Anti-Semitic statement!’ He wasn’t declaring that God was finished with Israel because of her rejection. And it most certainly was not an announcement that God was going to start all over again with a new Bride… a Gentile Bride – the non-Jewish Christian Church!
No, beloved, that’s not what was taking place! How could anyone dare to accuse Almighty God of being a Covenant-breaking adulterer? Yeshua was expressing the pain of a broken-hearted lover. He wants to become one with His intended betrothed love so much, that when she spurns Him and proves to be unfaithful, His heart is sliced to ribbons. His response reflects the agony of unrequited love from the one He has sworn to love and bless forever! He has already given her His eternal Covenant promise to be ever-faithful to her. And He sealed and guaranteed His promise, by pouring out His own Life’s Blood, to serve as a Perfect Covering for her guilt! Thus, despite the grief He was feeling, Yeshua was proclaiming to the world that the Covenant Bond He created between Himself and Israel will always be honored and preserved, no matter what!
“Shout for joy, you heavens! And rejoice, you earth! Break forth into joyful shouting, mountains! For the Lord has comforted His people and will have compassion on His afflicted.
“But Zion said, “The Lord has abandoned me, and the Lord has forgotten me.”
“Can a woman forget her nursing child and have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, but I will not forget you. Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; your walls are continually before Me.” (Isaiah 49:13-16 NASB)
No, Yeshua wasn’t declaring God’s rejection and condemnation of Israel; He was expressing the profound depth of His agony that is caused when His beloved continues to reject His undying love! Yeshua wasn’t ‘getting even’ – He was grieving, dear ones, lamenting the fact that the one He eternally desires to embrace keeps turning away… and thereby, continues to open herself to enormous damage and loss! But did God not inspire Isaiah to prophesy that He already knew that this is how it would be until the end of the age? (See Isaiah 53.)
By spurning the One who loves her eternally, Israel remains vulnerable to the demonic attacks of the powers of Darkness who are always intent on preventing God’s Living Word from fulfilling everything Father has revealed, commanded and promised in His written Word… on behalf of Israel… and the rest of the fallen human race. But at the same time, by separating herself from Him, Israel removes herself from the scene and makes it possible for the rest of the anti-Semitic world to receive forgiveness and cleansing from Sin by the Blood of Israel’s Messiah and King!
When Yeshua was uttering His lament, He knew that in a few short years, the legions of Rome would overrun, devastate and destroy the nation, and scatter her surviving children to the ends of the earth! And when that actually happened, it was so devastating, that Israel’s surviving rabbinical leaders had to scramble to replace the worship instructions that God had given to them in Scripture, concerning the temple that the soldiers had razed to the ground. Now Judaism, as it had developed to that point, could no longer function. So the rabbis did their best to try to ‘reinvent’ their Jewish identity and Biblical underpinnings with an ever-growing collection of Talmudic teachings and traditions to which they continue to add, even to this day.
So Yeshua was lamenting the fact that most of the people of Israel would continue to refuse to believe, accept, and permit Him to serve as their Blood Covenant Protective Champion and All-Encompassing ‘Covering’. That’s why He was grieving. Israel still has no idea of how deep and destructive the demonic danger and devastation is that she must suffer, as long as her ongoing rejection of Him continues to leave her vulnerable!
The curses that were to follow when Israel violated her Sinai Covenant with God, as expressed in Deuteronomy 28, are unspeakably dire and severe. And God, in His Justice, Truth and Integrity, has had to permit Israel to suffer them as long as she rejects His Word. But God’s Love and Faithfulness to her are everlasting. Despite what flaky human beings do and fail to do, God remains Faithful and True to the promises He made to His Blood Covenant Friends, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. So notice what God says to faithless Israel in this text:
“Who (in Israel) has believed our report? To whom is the arm of Adonai revealed? For He (Messiah Yeshua) grew up before Him like a tender shoot, like a root out of dry ground. He had no form or majesty that we (Israelites) should look at Him, nor beauty that we should desire Him.
“He was despised and rejected by (Jewish) men, a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief, one from whom people hide their faces. He was despised, and we (Israelites) did not esteem Him.
“Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our pains. Yet we esteemed Him stricken, struck by God, and afflicted. But He was pierced because of our transgressions, crushed because of our iniquities. The chastisement for our shalom was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. We all like sheep have gone astray. Each of us turned to his own way. So Adonai has laid on Him the iniquity of us all!” (Isaiah 53:1-6 TLV, Amplification and emphasis added)
“Nevertheless, I will remember My Covenant with you in the days of your youth (for Abraham’s sake). Moreover, I will establish an everlasting (New) Covenant (the Renewed Abrahamic Covenant) with you. Then you will remember your ways and be ashamed, when you receive your older and younger sisters. I will give them to you for daughters, yet not because of your Covenant (made through Moses at Sinai, which you repeatedly broke).
“So I will establish My (renewed Abrahamic) Covenant with you (because I will never leave you, nor forsake you), and (finally, one day at last,) you will know that I am Adonai. So you will remember, be ashamed and never open your mouth again because of your disgrace, WHEN I HAVE FORGIVEN YOU OF ALL THAT YOU HAVE DONE.” It is a declaration of Adonai!” (Ezekiel 16:60-63 TLV, Amplification and emphasis added)
GOD’S WORD, ONCE SPOKEN, ENDURES FOREVER!
So we’re getting in touch with the fact that, once God gives His Word on something, He never changes His mind, or goes back on His Word. Everything that God’s Word has created is limited and changeable, and temporal. But that doesn’t mean that God isn’t going to transform His Covenant friends… and lead them into an eternal share of the Eternal Inheritance and Legacy He intends to bestow upon His own Living Word and beloved Son, Yeshua. In the end, they will be reconciled to Him and become His eternal co-heirs!
“The grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the Lord blows upon it; The people are indeed grass! The grass withers, the flower fades, but the Word of our God stands forever!” (Isaiah 40:7-8 TLV, Emphasis added)
And that is why it’s so important for all of us to come under the awesome protection of God’s Blood Covenant Covering that He originally placed over His chosen Israelite people. When we too can enjoy that Blessing, we too become invulnerable to all of the attacks of God’s many enemies, human and demonic.
And that blessed condition of being fully covered by our Messiah, reminds me of a true story I once read about that expresses this Covenant concept beautifully. It’s the account of what a very wise shepherd once did, when one of the lambs of his flock lost its mother to a predator, and another one of his ewes had a lamb that was too weak and sickly to survive.
When the shepherd tried to get some of the other ewes to accept the orphaned lamb, each of them sniffed the lamb, and promptly rejected him because they knew he did not belong to them. Sheep identify their own by their sense of smell. So this meant the shepherd would not be able to prevent the lamb from starving to death, as long as the lamb remained unable to nurse and receive the milk he needed to survive. So this little lamb had the misfortune of not having the ‘right scent.’ So this was the shepherd’s situation: one of his newborn lambs became ill and died. And another lamb lost his mother to some predators. So what did the shepherd do? He found the lamb that had died, and skinned it. Then he took that lamb’s fleece and wrapped it around the orphaned lamb and secured it with twine. So now, the fleece of the dead lamb served as the rejected lamb’s substitute ‘coat covering,’ because it had the scent of the lamb that had died.
And when the shepherd brought the newly-covered lamb once again to that ewe whose lamb had perished, she sniffed him over and caught the scent of her own dead lamb! So, because he had the right scent, the ewe immediately accepted him as her own. And she allowed him to partake of her milk, and ended up adopting him as her own.
And that reminds me of the fallen children of Sin-corrupted Adam. Adam is humanity’s original father and Covenant representative. Because of the Sin and Death that his original rebellion injected into our human nature and DNA, we are just like that rejected lamb before God’s Perfect Standards of Righteousness, Justice and Truth! Our broken Sin-corrupted nature is not at all compatible with the Nature of our Holy Righteous God! We are no longer what He intended and created in the beginning. Our fall from His Grace caused us to mutate; and we became ‘sub-human’ in our inherited fallen characteristics. Therefore we became incapable of serving as God’s image and likeness.
And there is nothing we can do, or say, or initiate that will coax or force God to accept us. The damage that the corruption of Sin and Death did to our fallen nature, abides in us. And that forces God’s Standards of Perfect Righteousness, Justice and Truth to judge, condemn and reject us! And there’s nothing we can do about that to save ourselves. And God knew that would happen. So from all of eternity past, He had the Solution to this problem already present in His mind, will and plan. And that Solution is the only hope we will ever have for salvation. And what is that Solution? Well, we must be ready to believe and wholeheartedly receive God’s Solution. The Solution is His Living Word made flesh. He became one of us so that the one who created and sustains us could become legally free to break the demonic hold that His demonic enemies have managed to wield over us. And once that happens, He is able to regenerate our spirits and make brand new creations out of us that are perfect in God’s sight! That is the authority and power of having God’s Word serve as our Eternal Blood Covenant Representative and Champion.
So if there is ever going to be any hope for us, the Blood Covenant Representative and Champion God provided for us must be allowed to serve as our Covering and Redemptive Substitute! And that is exactly what God’s Son is here to be and to do on our behalf! So, if we finally do believe and accept Him, and rely upon what He has done on our behalf, He can serve as the Perfect Righteous Covering that can obliterate our guilt and condemnation, and serve to cover our spiritual nakedness! This is how God can free us from our slavery to Sin and Death. This is how Yeshua can do for us, what the fleece of the little lamb that died did for the other lamb that had lost its mother! We will have the ‘Scent of Yeshua’s Infinitely Perfect Righteousness, Holiness and Value, permeating us, and there will be nothing about us to prevent our Heavenly Father from embracing and accepting us as His very own!
“Therefore, my loved ones, just as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now even more in my absence—work out your salvation with fear and trembling. For the One working in you is God—both to will and to work for His good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:12-13 TLV, Emphasis added)
The shepherd with the orphaned lamb symbolizes the way God, through His Blood Covenant Pattern, has made it possible for us to be redeemed and saved and brought out of the pit of death to a share in His Eternal Life. Beloved, this is how God’s Eternal Blood Covenant Pattern works on our behalf! Everything necessary has been done for us by our Covenant Representative, Yeshua the Messiah! In His infinite Wisdom and Lovingkindness, God has made it possible for us Jewish and non-Jewish human beings (who are contaminated and corrupted by the Sin we inherit from our first parents, and the sins we ourselves commit), to be covered by His Living Word, who was commissioned to serve as ‘The Lamb of God.’ When we become one with Him in the Blood Covenant God makes available to us, a similar wonderful thing happens. Because the Covenant makes us to be one with God’s Living Word, the Lamb of God. And our union with Him covers us with His Perfect Righteousness and Covenant Obedience to His Father!
“I immerse in water,” John answered. “Among you stands One you do not know, coming after me, whose sandals I’m not worthy to untie.” These things happened in Bethany beyond the Jordan, where John was immersing.
“The next day, John sees Yeshua coming to him and says, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! This is the One about whom I told you, ‘He who comes after me is above me, because He was before me.’ I didn’t know Him, but I came immersing with water so that He might be revealed to Israel.” (John 1:26-31 TLV, Emphasis added)
GOD’S LAMB IS HERE TO BE OUR ETERNAL COVERING!
Thus, when Father regards those of us that are thus covered and sees that we have put all of our faith, hope, trust and reliance upon His beloved Son, and what He has done to cover our spiritual nakedness, He considers us to be perfectly acceptable in His sight!
“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through Him. The one who believes in Him is not condemned; but whoever does not believe has been condemned already, because he has not put his trust in the name of the one and only Ben-Elohim.
“Now this is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world and men loved the Darkness instead of the Light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light and does not come to the Light, so that their deeds will not be exposed. But whoever practices the Truth comes to the Light, so that it may be made known that his deeds have been accomplished in God.” (John 3:16-21 TLV)
“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20 KJV, Emphasis added)
Because we love and trust and embrace the Son He sent to us, our Heavenly Father can legally and rightfully love, trust and embrace us… as His very own! And we can see from this practical ‘down to earth’ example of the sheep, the Covenant Life-Exchange dynamic that takes place when we enter into the renewed Blood Covenant our Heavenly Father has made available to us. And from this awesome and mysterious God-ordained Pattern, we can derive and absorb these extremely important and vitally essential facts.
After what Sin has done to damage and ruin our human nature, we’re like that orphaned lamb. There’s nothing we can do in and of ourselves, that could force or persuade God to accept us as His own. The inherent Selfishness of Sin and the Death Sentence it inflicts upon us, are totally alien and unacceptable to God’s Perfect Righteousness and Love and Life-Giving Nature.
- Once Sin has corrupted our nature, and Death has invaded our DNA, then everything we try to be and do and achieve out of our good intentions and deep desires for change and redemption will have Death abiding within it. Thus that Death-corruption will only produce more Death-corruption. And everything we try to do, or offer, or desire to achieve, will have the curse of Death upon it. That’s why our well-intentioned religious efforts to ‘save ourselves’ or ‘improve’ or ‘be spiritual’ or ‘good’ or ‘earn our redemption’ are doomed to dismal failure. Death can only produce more Death.
- But, fortunately for us, God reveals that, in the very beginning, when He created the time and space universe in which we were to unfold and reveal our allotted individual Death-ridden existence and time span in this fallen world, He spoke His Perfect Creative Word… who in His Perfect Obedience to His Father… created Everything His Father desired to create… as well as everything each of His Father’s creatures would ever need in the future to fulfill our God-given identity, purpose and destiny. (For example, see Genesis 1 and 2:1-3; 12:1-3; Matthew 11:25-30; Ephesians 1-4; Colossians 1:15-20; 3:1-4 and Hebrews 4. So everything we will ever be, or do, or achieve and have, throughout our entire existence that will be acceptable to our God, cannot originate in us or flow from anything we may try to initiate.
- But because God created us by and through His Living Word, everything God intended us to be and do, is contained within the Divine Fullness of His Creative Word. And the Word will supply everything we will ever need, from the Infinite Treasury of Grace that flows out from the Word’s Perfect Finished Works of Creation, Redemption and Restoration that He has already accomplished in our name. Everything necessary for our total Redemption and Restoration has been accomplished and provided for us by God’s Infinitely Perfect and Eternal Living Word… who became flesh to serve as our Eternal Blood Covenant Representative, Champion and Covering.
- So beloved, when we come under God’s Blood Covenant Covering, that means that His Living Word has become one with us, and we have become one with Him! And that means that whatever is in the Fullness that is in Yeshua, also becomes one with us! So, in that awesome sense, He becomes our Perfect Covering, His Faith and Obedience and Righteousness, become ours as well. And that is how He will serve as our full and perfect Coverer and Provider… FOREVER!
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Messiah. He chose us in the Messiah before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless before Him in love. He predestined us for adoption as sons through Messiah Yeshua, in keeping with the good pleasure of His will—to the glorious praise of His grace, with which He favored us through the One He loves! (Ephesians 1:3-6)
YESHUA IN US IS THE HOPE OF GLORY!
Therefore, when God beholds a man or woman that has become one with His beloved Son, He sees them through ‘Covenant Eyes.’ That is, He always sees His Perfect Son in that person, and He sees that person in His beloved Son! This is how our Sin-corrupted humanity has been covered! And we God-blessed humans are no longer ‘naked’ before our Creator. Only God Himself is able to meet and satisfy His perfectly perfect standards! And so the Infinite Perfection and Holiness and Righteousness that is in God’s Word has been commissioned to cover and fill us with the Perfection that is in Almighty God Himself! God Himself is our Salvation! And this is well expressed by this Amplified Version translation of what Paul wrote in his letter to the Ephesians, and then also, in his letter to the Romans:
“For this reason [grasping the greatness of this plan by which Jews and Gentiles are joined together in Christ] I bow my knees [in reverence] before the Father [of our Lord Jesus Christ], from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name [God—the first and ultimate Father]. May He grant you out of the riches of His glory, to be strengthened and spiritually energized with power through His Spirit in your inner self, [indwelling your innermost being and personality], so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through your faith.
“And may you, having been [deeply] rooted and [securely] grounded in love, be fully capable of comprehending with all the saints (God’s people) the width and length and height and depth of His love [fully experiencing that amazing, endless love]; and [that you may come] to know [practically, through personal experience] the love of Christ which far surpasses [mere] knowledge [without experience], that you may be filled up [throughout your being] to all the Fullness of God [so that you may have the richest experience of God’s Presence in your lives, completely filled and flooded with God Himself]!
Now to Him who is able to [carry out His purpose and] do superabundantly more than all that we dare ask or think [infinitely beyond our greatest prayers, hopes, or dreams], according to His Power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3:14-21 AMP)
“Now we know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, so that He might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. And those whom He predestined, He also called; and those whom He called, He also justified; and those whom He justified, He also glorified.
“What then shall we say in view of these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all, how shall He not also with Him freely give us all things? Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is the one who condemns? It is Messiah, who died, and moreover was raised, and is now at the right hand of God and who also intercedes for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Messiah? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written,
“For Your sake we are being put to death all day long; we are counted as sheep for the slaughter.”
“But in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Messiah Yeshua our Lord.” (Romans 8:28-39 TLV)
So dear ones, thanks to the awesome renewed Abrahamic Covenant that God made with His beloved chosen one, Israel, she and the entire human race can be grafted into our Messiah, and all of His Fullness can be poured into us… to the Eternal Glory of our Heavenly Father! And we have God’s written assurance that all those who belong to Israel who will believe and repent and receive Yeshua as their Perfect Covering, will be totally reconciled to God, through His Living Word, Yeshua. And the entire rest of the repentant human race will also be blessed beyond belief by the overflow of that awesome Reunion!
“For I do not want you, brothers and sisters, to be ignorant of this mystery—lest you be wise in your own eyes—that a partial hardening has come upon Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in; and in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,
“The Deliverer shall come out of Zion. He shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob. And this is My covenant with them, when I take away their sins.”
“Concerning the Good News, they (the unbelieving Jewish people) are hostile for your sake; but concerning chosenness, they are loved on account of the fathers—for THE GIFTS AND THE CALLING OF GOD ARE IRREVOCABLE!
For just as you once were disobedient to God but now have been shown mercy because of their disobedience, in like manner these also have now been disobedient with the result that, because of the mercy shown to you, they also may receive mercy. FOR GOD HAS SHUT UP ALL IN DISOBEDIENCE, SO THAT HE MIGHT SHOW MERCY TO ALL!
O the depth of the riches, both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and how incomprehensible His ways! For “who has known the mind of Adonai, or who has been His counselor?” Or “who has first given to Him, that it shall be repaid to him?”
“For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the Glory forever! Amen.” (Romans 11:25-36)