We, both Jews and Gentiles, are Abraham's seed

Discussion in 'Calvinism/Arminianism Debate' started by SovereignGrace, Jul 24, 2015.

  1. SovereignGrace

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    I was doing some studying in Romans yesterday when I started reading chapter nine. DHK vehemently denies that we, the Gentiles, are of Abraham's seed. But here is what I came across in chapter nine:


    I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying, my conscience confirms it through the Holy Spirit— I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people, those of my own race, the people of Israel. Theirs is the adoption to sonship; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen.[vss 1-5]

    Here, Paul is anguishing that many of his lineage(family) were unbelievers, and also many friends and those he used to associate with, the chief priests, the Pharisees, Saducees, &c were resting in their natural lineage traced back to Abraham. He is showing us all that they had been given, the very words of God, the covenants, temple worship, and even the promises of God. Yet, in all of this, they were still unbelievers. They had turned the office of High Priest into a political office, instead of what it was intended for, to atone for the Jews' sins by sacrificing lambs, oxen, turtledoves, and/or goats.


    It is not as though God’s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children. On the contrary, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” In other words, it is not the children by physical descent who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring. For this was how the promise was stated: “At the appointed time I will return, and Sarah will have a son.”[vss 6-9]

    Here Paul lays the ground work to show who the true Jews were/are. It was not through the fleshly lineage of Abraham's natural seed(Isaac), but through Abraham's Spiritual lineage(Christ), that the nations shall be blessed.[Gen. 18:18, 22:18, 26:4, & 27:29, Psa. 72:17, Isa. 61:9, Mal. 3:12 & Gal. 3:8] Sarah's son, Isaac, fathered Jacob, who fathered the twelve patriarchs, and through Judah's lineage Christ came. It was through Abraham's Spiritual Seed, Christ, that the nations shall be blessed.


    Then in Galatians 4 Paul tells them(a Gentile peoples, by the way):


    Now you, brothers and sisters, like Isaac, are children of promise. At that time the son born according to the flesh persecuted the son born by the power of the Spirit. It is the same now. But what does Scripture say? “Get rid of the slave woman and her son, for the slave woman’s son will never share in the inheritance with the free woman’s son.” Therefore, brothers and sisters, we are not children of the slave woman, but of the free woman.[vss 28-31]

    These Gentiles were also children of promise, the same promise that God gave to Abram, who later became Abraham. Then in chapter three of Galatians Paul states Understand, then, that those who have faith are children of Abraham. Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.” So those who rely on faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.[vss 7-9] Then he also stated He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.[vs 14] And this chapter three is closed about by Paul's statement So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.[vss 26-29]

    So we, both believing Jews and Gentiles make up the true Jews.
     
    #1 SovereignGrace, Jul 24, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 24, 2015
  2. Iconoclast

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    This language is so clear.....nobody should be confused by it. In fact most everyone here agrees with your post. To not understand the importance of this verse can only be the result of a carnal fragmenting of the flow of Scripture.
     
  3. Protestant

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    Yes. This was God's ultimate plan from all eternity. The Church of the First-Born, the true Israel of God, the spiritual seed of Abraham, the children of promise, His Body, His Bride, His members --- would be comprised of all the Elect from the beginning until the Last Day......whether they be Jew or Gentile.

    Great post!
     
  4. SovereignGrace

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    I am just waiting for DHK to come and debate where he thinks I am wrong.
     
  5. DHK

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    Israel as a nation still exists. The blessings of Abraham extend to us only by the channel of faith. In no way are Gentile believers "Abraham's seed," but rather, we inherit spiritual blessings of Abraham because we are children of God.
    It is clear that he was praying for the nation of Israel in toto, not just his family and ancestors.

    So far Paul has made no mention of any Gentile, or any person outside of Israel. A true Israelite was a person like David. One who wasn't was one like Ahab, one who did not believe. Paul is nowhere near speaking of anyone outside "the fleshly lineage of Abraham's natural seed," to whom was given the promise.

    Throughout the NT "seed of Abraham" and "children of promise" refer to those who have come to Christ by faith. The emphasis is always on faith.

    Consider the verses quoted above from Gal.4.
    Walvoord comments:
    We are not "of" Isaac but rather "like" Isaac. It is a comparison.
    The other comparison is supernatural. The new birth is supernatural, as was the birth of Isaac. These are comparisons, and faith is the common thread.

    Peter, preaching at the temple, said:
    Acts 3:25 Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed.
    --All people are blessed through Abraham, but only through faith. They must believe on Christ.

    Romans 4:13 For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.
    --Note that the promise is through the righteousness of faith.

    Romans 4:16 Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,
    --Again: Of faith, by grace...which is of the faith of Abraham who is the father of us all--but only through faith.

    Galatians 3:16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.
    --This shows how Christ is in the lineage of Abraham, but then go down a few verses to get some context:
    Gal 3:26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.
    --Faith is always emphasized.

    Hebrews 2:16 For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.
    --Jesus came from heaven to the earth and was born as a Jew. He said to the woman at the well: Salvation is of the Jews. It originated there. But that doesn't make Gentile believers Jews or the church an extension of Israel. Israel is an entity separate of the church. The church started at Pentecost and remains apart from Israel.
    When a Gentile is saved he becomes a saved Gentile.
    When a Jew becomes saved he becomes a saved Jew.
    When a Muslim becomes saved he becomes a saved Muslim.
    We need to drop the words: Gentile, Jew, Muslim, etc. We are one in Christ.
    Gentiles, Jews, Muslims, etc. still exist. Once they are saved they are Christians, not an extension of Israel.
     
  6. SovereignGrace

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    Never stated otherwise. But were they a nation at the time of Christ, seeing they were under Rome's kings? I ask this in all sincerity, mon ami.

    Any blessings we receive is via faith. Never stated otherwise.


    Again, he is what I came across in Romans 1 this evening monsieur:

    Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God— the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures regarding his Son, who as to his earthly life(fleshly lineage) was a descendant of David, and who through the Spirit of holiness was appointed the Son of God in power[vss 1-4] Here Paul is painting a portrait of Christ as Son of Man(via David's{and conversely Isaac's} seed in the flesh) and as Christ as the Son of God(via the Spirit). It is through Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Judah----->David, Solomon, that Christ came through as the Son of Man and also Son of God, being God in the flesh.[1 Tim. 3:16] Every fleshly Jew is a true descendant of Abraham. However, the true Jew of the bible, those born of the Spirit, are both Jew(naturally born) and Gentile(grafted in to the True Vine, Christ).


    He was anguishing over his family and the Israelites, yes, I agree.


    Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children.[Rom. 9:7a] Paul plainly stated that the true Jews were not necessarily of Abraham's lineage, ergo Gentiles.


    You keeping reiterating 'faith' as if I disagree with its necessity. :confused;

    The point I am making is we attained the very same promises that God gave to Abram, and later Abraham, and we are Spiritual descendants of Abraham. The saved Jew is both a fleshly and Spiritual descendant of Abraham. The fleshly descendants that die unsaved, suffer the same consequences of the unsaved gentiles. Paul is telling the Jews who have come out of Judaism that is what it takes, being spiritual Jews and not only fleshly Jews.

    Yes. You need to take your anti-faith, anti-sola fide debates up with those who are as such.

    Yes.

    Yes.

    Yes. Please show me one post where I stated anything of the contrary. The promise was to seed and not seeds, monsieur. The seed is Christ, and the unsaved Jews die and go to torment just the same as the unsaved gentile. The Jews during Christ's and Paul's ministries were resting in their fleshly lineage, thinking that being born of Abraham's lineage was all they needed. Christ and Paul both told them the truth, that being born a natural Jew just was not going to cut it. It takes a birth from above, a birth of the Spirit, and that is the only thing that make anyone a true Jew, biblically speaking.

    He first went to the He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”[Matt. 15:24] I do not disagree with Him. But yet, Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— [Jn 1:12]


    Uh, non.As paul wrote to the church at Galatia, a Gentile church The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. Scripture does not say “and to seeds,” meaning many people, but “and to your seed,” meaning one person, who is Christ.[Gal. 3:16] You have two promises provided to two separate entities, the church and Israel, and that is a foreign concept to the bible, monsieur.

    A Jew inwardly. :thumbsup:

    A Jew inwardly. :thumbsup:

    A Jew inwardly, :thumbsup:

    Christian means Christ'like', non, mon ami/ Jesus is the true Israel, the true Jew, who is One inwardly and outwardly.
     
  7. JonC

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    I'm not sure that "in no way" is appropriate wording here, DHK:

    Galatians 3:29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, heirs according to promise.
     
  8. JamesL

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    What do we do when both sides are wrong?


    .
     
  9. JonC

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    Offer another?
     
  10. Revmitchell

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    There are two types of seed in scripture physical seed and spiritual seed just like there are two types of election in scripture national election and individual election. With regards to the latter Romans 9-11 discusses both.
     
  11. DHK

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    Verse 29 goes with verse 28:

    Gal 3:28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
    Gal 3:29 And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.

    We are not Jews. It is plainly stated here. We are all one in Christ. The "Jew" name needs to be dropped. Paul uses "Abraham's seed" only in a metaphorical way. He immediately drops it, by clarifying what he already said in verse 28--heirs according to the promise. What is the promise. The promise is Jesus Christ.

    Heb 11:39 And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise:
    --The OT saints looked forward to the Promise.
    --We look back upon the Promise, but having been regenerated He, by the power of the Holy Spirit, has taken up residence in our bodies which are the temples of God (1Cor.6:19,20). This is by faith.
    We are not Jews. We are Christians, or "of Christ." That is what we have in common. They looked forward to the Promise; we look back. Surely one doesn't have to take this metaphor to such an extreme to think that they are literally of the "seed of Abraham."

    It is Christ that is the seed of Abraham, not us. And we are of Christ. That is the teaching here.
     
  12. JonC

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    I think the difficulty people have is that Paul does speak of Israel, or Jews, apart from the Church (not, to my knowledge, "redeemed" Jews, but Jews for whom God still has a plan). He also speaks of a Jewish people where Jews were lost and Gentiles grafted in.

    I do not really know, DHK, if I agree or disagree with you here. I have not explored this thread enough, I suppose, and was just pointing out that there is a context whereby Paul speaks of all Christians as the "seed of Abraham." Yes, his comments are qualified and must be taken in context of the passage.

    I have seen people quite unbiblically substitute the Church for Israel in Scripture. I have also seen people quite unbiblically present two paths or purposes in God's redemptive history. I usually think of Jews and the Church as distinctly different (sometimes I think covenant theologians mix things up a bit)....until we start talking about the people of God, the elect, those who are saved and are in Christ (there is no Jew or Gentile "in Christ"). But Jews as Abraham's seed...well, what is meant is heirs of God's promise. Here I think it appropriate to consider that not all Jews are Jews.
     
  13. DHK

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    I believe that statement must be taken in context of ethnic Israel.

    Rom 2:28 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:
    Rom 2:29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.

    Paul, speaking of Israel, was saying that just because Abraham was their father, that they had been circumcised of the flesh, that they were of the stock and lineage of David, etc. did not make them a Jew. A true Jew (like David), was a man after God's own heart, who did not seek the praise of men (like the Pharisees), but of God. He is describing Jews in Romans 2, not Christians.

    We are one in Christ. It is clear that when a Jew became a Christian they left their Judaism behind. The author of the book of Hebrews made this very clear. He was writing to those Jewish believers who had been turned away from their own families, were being persecuted by both the Jews and the Roman government. The Jews disowned them. They were now Christians, not Jews. The Church was not an extension of Israel, but apart from Israel, and an enemy of existing Israel.
    Remember who Saul was before he became Paul. All believers feared him. He, a representative of Israel, was the enemy of Christ, and Christianity.
     
  14. Iconoclast

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    Jon c

    You have it right. There is a clear denial of Gal3:28-29.....being presented. The text is so clear, and the denial is even clearer.
     
  15. JonC

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    I agree that it gets a bit tangled (Jewish religion, Jewish ethnicity, and of course the overreaching covenant God made with Abraham). That verse we just spoke of did, BTW, specifically call Christians Jews. You are right that it is not speaking of nationality, but neither are we....or at least, neither am I. Christians enter into a covenantal relationship with God - that is, they are considered covenantal participants in His covenant with Abraham. I agree that the Old Covenant that Judaism had centered around has ended, and Gentiles are never a part of that covenant. Jews were under the Old Covenant (all of them regardless of faithfulness). Gentiles were not. But we are heirs of the Promise ("Jews" in that sense. Paul reaches that far back, although we can agree that this is "pre-Israel" and certainly 'Pre-Judaism").

    So for my clarification:

    Gen 17:5 And because I have made you the ancestor of many nations, your name will no longer be Abram but Abraham. 6 I will make you very fertile. I will produce nations from you, and kings will come from you. 7 I will set up my covenant with you and your descendants after you in every generation as an enduring covenant. I will be your God and your descendants’ God after you. 8 I will give you and your descendants the land in which you are immigrants, the whole land of Canaan, as an enduring possession. And I will be their God.”

    Is this passage speaking of a covenant between God and the nation of Israel, God and the elect Jews, or is it speaking of a covenant between God and the Church?
     
  16. The Archangel

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    This simply is not so. In the Book of Acts, especially, the early Christians were in the Temple, daily.

    There was a departure of the Jews and the followers of "The Way," for sure. But the early Christians, like Peter, James, John, etc. did not leave their Jewishness behind.

    The Archangel
     
  17. SovereignGrace

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    Non, monsieur, non, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God.[Rom. 2:29]

    Again, in Jesus' earthly ministry, He was confronted by those who "Are you greater than our father Abraham? He died, and so did the prophets. Who do you think you are?”[Jn 8:53] They wanted nothing to do with Jesus' words because "but you do not believe because you are not my sheep."[Jn 10:26] and also because "You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies."[Jn 8:44] They thought that by Abraham being their father, that was sufficient enough. Jesus, and later Paul, told them otherwise.


    In John 3, Jesus tells Nicodemus "Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again."[Jn 3:3] He was telling Nicodemus that the fleshly birth was not enough. It takes a birth of the Spirit, and this makes all who are saved a Jew inwardly.


    In John 15 Jesus says “I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.[vss 1-8]

    Compare that passage to Romans 11 where Paul wrote If the part of the dough offered as firstfruits is holy, then the whole batch is holy; if the root is holy, so are the branches.[vs 16] Jesus is the Firstfruit, and we take upon us His nature, in our spirit, in our soul. The Jews of this very day have to go through this same experience in order to be a true Biblical Jew.

    and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root.[Rom. 11:17b] The Jews need grafted into this True Vine, too. If they are, they are nourished by His sap. Just are we, as Gentiles, are nourished.
     
    #17 SovereignGrace, Jul 25, 2015
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  18. Iconoclast

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    nice post....found this on precept Austin

    then here;
    https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Romans+9&version=MOUNCE
     
    #18 Iconoclast, Jul 25, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 25, 2015
  19. DHK

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    Not their ethnicity.
    An Arab Muslim converts to Christianity. He remains an Arab but not a Muslim.
    One cannot be a Muslim and a Christian at the same time. But there are Arab Christians. In the same way there are ethnic Jews that have become saved, but they have left the false religion of Judaism behind. The two cannot exist together.
    First, the Temple was a convenient place to meet until the authorities kicked them out for good.
    Second, the same held true for the synagogue. Paul had an opening in many synagogues because he was a former rabbi and his education kept him in good standing with the Jewish community. But as we see in Thessalonica his welcome didn't last very long. As he persecuted when he was Saul, so now he was the persecuted as Paul.

    In the gospels Jesus had a gathering of Jewish followers. His ministry was to the Jews.
    The "church" did not start until the Day of Pentecost. Even then, the entire book of Acts was a book of transition.
    Not until Acts 8 did the gospel begin to go out to the Samaritans.
    Not until Acts 10 did the gospel go out to the Gentiles.

    Thus the theology of the "church" must be attained mostly from the epistles, not from the history given in the gospels and Acts. In the epistles we are told explicitly that we are one in Christ, and no longer Jew or Gentile.
     
  20. SovereignGrace

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    Is this blessedness only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? We have been saying that Abraham’s faith was credited to him as righteousness. Under what circumstances was it credited? Was it after he was circumcised, or before? It was not after, but before! And he received circumcision as a sign, a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. So then, he is the father of all who believe but have not been circumcised, in order that righteousness might be credited to them. And he is then also the father of the circumcised who not only are circumcised but who also follow in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.[Rom. 4:9-12]

    He is the father of Jewish(circumcised in flesh{foreskin removal}) and Gentile believers. Both have had a circumcision of the heart.[Rom. 2:29 & Col. 2:11]
     

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