God’s Way Neglected

It is much more than merely surprising that there are people who say that God’s plan for the world is the same as the plan for Israel. The gospel is not an item in the marketplace with versions for everyone with an idea or a set preferences. We, 2000 years after God took the lid off the world’s salvation, have to consider that if Judah, with its many detailed instructions, had a problem changing its mind, then the Gentile world crosses the river of repentance much more easily.

Mark 7:7-13

7) But in vain do they worship Me, Teaching as doctrines the precepts of men. 8) Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men.” (Compare Isaiah 29:13)

9) He also kept saying to them, “You are experts at setting aside the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition”.

FOR EXAMPLE

10) For Moses said, ‘Honor your father and your mother’; and, ‘He who speaks evil of father or mother, is to be put to death’; 11. but you say, ‘If a man says to his father or his mother, whatever I have that would help you is Corban (that is to say, given to God),’ 12) you no longer permit him to do anything for his father or his mother; 13) thus invalidating the word of God by your tradition which you have handed down; and you do many things such as that.”

Mark 7

Signs and goodness

Alas, even when the Lord puts his miracles of kindness on full display to both Jew and Gentile people stuck to what their ancestors passed down. Our Lord’s evaluation of several Judean cities (including his chosen hometown) should shake us awake to the dangers of holding up any tradition as contributions to the kingdom way. All the prophets and the law do defer to the Incarnate Word (Acts 3)

EVERYTHING HE SAYS.
22) Moses said, ‘The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brethren; to Him you shall give heed to everything He says to you. 23) And it will be that every soul that does not heed that prophet shall be utterly destroyed from among the people.’

Acts 3

Repentance and Miracles in the Gospel

PRIVILEGED AND RESISTANT COMMUNITIES

20) Then He began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent. 21) “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles had occurred in Tyre and Sidon which occurred in you, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22) Nevertheless I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment than for you. 23) And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You will descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day.

Matthew 11

Performance and accountability

Finally, we cannot embrace Yeshua as the Way and at the same time lay hold of other ways, especially a ton of them, with a straight face. There is only one “way” to the Father, not a multitude of ways. Human pride keeps insisting on bringing a wide variety of performance and accountability issues to the table, but those issues are all filthy rags, to use a popular and prophetic description. Separating the divine from the human is essential both for our access to the kingdom and our enjoyment of elect privileges.