Ask Christians about “Jews” and you’re likely to get a broad range of responses. Ultimately, the conversation will come down to ... the Jews missed the Messiah. Some, hopefully many more than not, understand the role of Israel and the Jewish people in bringing salvation to the Gentiles -AND- how ultimately all of Israel will be saved. (Romans 11:26).
Still, it is quite easy for we Christians to judge or criticize or even wonder at how they missed Messiah. They denied (and continue to deny) Him, we say; they (Jews) are offended when we talk about our Messiah (yes, I’ve lost friends over this very offense); and some even believe the Jews have missed the boat entirely and that Christians have replaced Israel as the Chosen People of Yahweh.
While the Jews might have temporarily missed the boat, the Haftarah reading for this week includes the words of the prophet Isaiah in 29:22-23 in which he speaks of a (still) future time ...
22“Jacob shall not now be ashamed, nor shall his face now turn pale; 23 but when he sees his children, the work of My hands, in his midst, they will sanctify My name; Indeed, they will sanctify the Holy One of Jacob and will stand in awe of the God of Israel.”
And we have the words of Romans 11:25 ...
“For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery—so that you will not be wise in your own estimation—that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in;”
Which brings me to my point ... while many Jews have missed the Messiah, do not many Christians DISmiss Him? Daily?
-- Do we keep the incredible sacrifice of our Messiah front and center of our daily lives, and are we humbled by that sacrifice?
-- Do we understand that He is a HOLY GOD and is to be revered?
-- Do we think about Him first when we arise and is He our last thought before we fall asleep?
-- Do we praise Him in all things or only seek Him when things aren’t going well? (Ephesians 4:6)
-- Do we give Him all the glory for the blessings in our lives?
-- Do we Shema (hear and obey) what Yeshua tells us in John 14:15 ... “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments”?
-- Do we regularly confess our sins and repent of our wicked ways?
-- Do we keep the Sabbath holy, which our Father told us in Exodus 20:8 to “remember” to do?
-- Do we pray without ceasing as the Bible instructs? Do we pray at all?
What do you think breaks the heart of our Father more ... the denial of His Son by the Jews, which He used to bring us, the Gentiles, to salvation? Or, the Christians who DISmiss Christ by professing with their mouths they are saved but continuing to live carnal, sin-filled lives because after all ... grace covers all sin?
Again, chilling words from the prophet Isaiah ...
13 Then the Lord said, “Because this people draw near with their words and honor Me with their lip service, but they remove their hearts far from Me, and their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote,
14 Therefore behold, I will once again deal marvelously with this people, wondrously marvelous; and the wisdom of their wise men will perish, and the discernment of their discerning men will be concealed.”
15 Woe to those who deeply hide their plans from the Lord, and whose deeds are done in a dark place, and they say, “Who sees us?” or “Who knows us?”
16 You turn things around! Shall the potter be considered as equal with the clay, that what is made would say to its maker, “He did not make me”;
Or what is formed say to him who formed it, “He has no understanding”?
If the Yahweh deemed it necessary to discipline His Chosen People (Israel), do not think for a moment Christians get a free pass. In the words of the first prophet Enoch in Jude ...
14 “It was also about these men that Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord came with many thousands of His holy ones, 15 to execute judgment upon ALL, ....”