THE GREAT OMISSION

by Alan C. Lazerte B.A.,LL.B.
Executive Director, Canadian Friends, ICEJ

The day after Israel's election results were made clear, the church we attended read Ps.124:

If it had not been the Lord who was on our side, now may Israel say:
If it had not been the Lord who was on our side, when men rose up against us;
Then they had swallowed us up quick, when their wrath was kindled against us:
Then the waters had overwhelmed us, the stream had gone over our soul:
Then the proud waters had gone over our soul:
Blessed be the Lord, who hath not given us as a prey to their teeth.
Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers:
The snare is broken, and we are escaped.
Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
Immediately after the reading we did what we gentile believers usually do...applied the Psalm to ourselves without reference to the Jewish people or Israel; in effect substituting the word CHURCH for the word ISRAEL.

Now there is nothing wrong with us drawing parallels, but we have a mindset that "cuts Israel off" from what are still, and in the first instance were, her scriptures.

Psalm 124 was written for Israel, and the law of context requires that we first read it as spoken to Israel; then it is proper to go on and draw the appropriateness to us as gentiles in another age and dispensation.

I must confess that I thought it sad that on such a pivotal day for Israel we were not only insensitive, but apparently totally unaware of both the significance and importance of the vote for Israel, the Church and the world. You see Israel's enemies nearly "swallowed (them) up quickly" in this election; not only foregin enemies, but enemies within...both Jewish and Arab citizens of Israel!

Fortunately the anti-God forces who appeared to be winning, in fact lost to those who believe in Israel's destiny under G-d as revealed in their Tenach (First covenant); which we have wrongly written off as "Old" (and therefore by implication "irrelevant").

But not so fast! The world's most important events yet to come were still, and sometimes only, spoken to mankind through these Jewish prophets. Jesus' focus was less earthy, and more heavenly focused, but He specifically confirmed the Tenach as the eternal Word of God, said that not one jot or tittle would be erased, and speaking of the yet future quoted Daniel in respect of the "abomination of desolation" yet to come!

Two weeks ago we were in fellowship with Messianic believers in Calgary who feel obliged to have their own fellowship. Why? Because gentile churches are so devoid of the richness to be found in the Jewish roots of their faith (the roots of the "Olive tree" spoken of by Paul in Romans 11).

I am not talking about "Judaizing"; which is adding something other than Christ's finished work to the Way of salvation; but rather as to our understanding as gentiles of the deepness and faithfulness of God to all His covenants.

Further, having attended by invitation two religious celebrations by Jews in Toronto since Israel's election; and having heard them giving testimony to the mercy of the G-d of Israel in these belated election results, I am very aware...more than ever...that our gentile Christian attitudes and teachings have been, and remain, a tremendous stumbling block to the Jewish people seeing the love of God in Jesus through us.

At the synogogue I was asked to say something, unexpectedly. I quickly asked God for wisdom, and out of my innermost being, without running it through my head, said: "We are here as Christian-Zionists to celebrate with you, and to give thanks to the God of Israel, to whom we Christians also owe everything." The response was joyful applause.

Jesus gave us "the great commission ." Unfortunately, as far as the Jewish people are concerned Christendom has in the main,contrary to the Word of God, made Israel and the Jewish people "our great omission." Not only that, we have directly disobeyed the Word as clearly given by Paul in Romans 15:27 and Romans Chapter 11.

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