Tuesday, September 11, 2012

None but the Jew only

What proof do we have that Jesus in his earthly ministry did not minister to Gentiles, but only to the Jews?

Actually the question should be:  “What proof do we have that Jesus did minister to Gentiles and not to Jews only?”  That is where the burden of proof lies.

I will show you verses that say that he did not minister to gentiles, but to Jews only.  Let’s begin with our Apostle Paul, the ‘sent one’ from Jesus Christ to us gentiles.

Romans 11:13
For I [Paul] speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office:

Acts 9:15
But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he [Paul] is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:

Paul is the spokesman for today in the dispensation of grace.  Now watch what he says:

Romans 15:8
Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision [the Jewish people] for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers:

The reason the Lord Jesus Christ came to earth in the flesh was specifically because God had made promises “unto the fathers” – that being, the Jewish fathers, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (Israel).  He was a minister of the circumcision.  So he came to Israel and ministered only in Israel.  Now look at the rest of this passage:

Romans 15:15-16
Nevertheless, brethren, I have written the more boldly unto you in some sort, as putting you in mind, because of the grace that is given to me of God,

So Paul is about to remind us of this grace that was given to him of God... 

That I should be the minister of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles, ministering the gospel of God, that the offering up of the Gentiles might be acceptable, being sanctified by the Holy Ghost.

It is the Apostle Paul whom Jesus Christ has chosen to be his vessel of ministry to the gentiles for the gospel of the grace of God which he received from the Lord.

Acts 20:24
But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.

The Lord Jesus Christ says himself that he did not have a ministry to the gentiles, but only to the Jews.  In Matthew 15 there is a real-life example of a gentile who was an exception.

Matthew 15:21-28
Then Jesus went thence, and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon.  And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil.

Now watch this; it is so important:

But he answered her not a word.

The reason it is so important is because he never treated a Jewish woman that way.  In fact in his earthly ministry the Lord would go around looking for Jews to heal (Luke 8:43-45) (John 8:3-11).  There were women everywhere in Israel whom he healed.  So why did he answer this woman “not a word”?

And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us.

Why are they acting this way towards this woman?

But he [the Lord] answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

That is the definitive reason out of his own mouth: that the Lord’s earthly ministry was to Jews only.  In mercy he heals this woman who is a type and shadow of his ministry to gentiles in the Kingdom (“…in thee [Abraham] shall all the families of the earth be blessed.  Gen. 12:3).

Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me.  But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children's bread, and to cast it to dogs [gentiles].  And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters' table.  Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.

Notice that it is only after Israel has finished eating that a gentile can beg like a little puppy for a tiny crumb of blessing that might fall under the table.  That is not how God deals with gentiles today.  Now in this dispensation we have the riches of his grace!

Ephesians 1:7
In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;

He has seated us in heavenly places in Christ Jesus!

Ephesians 2:6
And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

That is a dispensational change.  But when it comes to the earthly ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, he only deals with the Jews.

Your question is ‘what proof do we have that Jesus did not minister to the gentiles but only Jews?’  I say again that the burden of proof is on those who are not dispensational and who don’t see this, to show us that he dealt with gentiles on a regular basis – not just the two or three times that were exceptions, such as healing the servant of a gentile centurion.

Matthew 8:5-13
And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him, And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented.  And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.  The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.  For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it.  When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel.  And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.  But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.  And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.

The reason why he healed him was because the centurion loved the nation of Israel and he built them a synagogue (Luke 7:5).  He blessed Israel, so he was blessed.

Genesis 12:3
And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.

But the Lord Jesus Christ went about healing all manner of sickness and disease among the people.

Matthew 4:23
And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.

They are not just anybody; they are the people of Israel.  Paul tells us that Jesus was a minister of the circumcision.  Jesus himself says that he is “not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel”; and he tells his disciples not to go to the gentiles.

Matthew 10:5-6
These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

The believing Jews are still preaching to Jews only as late as the book of Acts.

Acts 11:19
Now they [Christ’s apostles and disciples] which were scattered abroad upon the persecution that arose about Stephen travelled as far as Phenice, and Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to none but unto the Jews only.

Now where did they get the idea that even though they were living among gentiles that they should only speak the word to Jews?  Because, that is what the Lord told them to do.

Acts 1:8
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and [then] unto the uttermost part of the earth.

Israel must first receive Christ; to the Jew first and then to the gentile.

Romans 1:16
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek [Gentiles].

That was God’s plan.  As late as Acts 11 they were preaching to Jews only; so definitely in the four Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John it was to Jew only. 
So if someone believes that Christ’s earthly ministry was to all nations, which is just not true, we would ask them what proof they have that Jesus did minister to gentiles on a regular basis.  There were exceptions, but even those exceptions were to prove doctrine:  The gentiles were ”under the Jews’ table”…so to speak…and all along, the Jews were to be the instrument of blessing by which the Gentiles received any blessing.

Deuteronomy 28:13a
And the Lord shall make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath;

In the ages to come, the nations will be blessed through Israel as part of the Abrahamic Covenant.  But now that is not how God is dealing with the world today.  When you rightly divide God’s word you find that individual Jews and gentiles are all blessed in one body by the cross.

Romans 12:5
So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

Ephesians 2:14-15
For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;

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