Heb 2:14                     He Destroyed the Lord of Death                             8/14/2011        ßą   

 

 

 

#1.       He Also Took Part of the Same (Heb 2:14)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#2.       An Infinite Stoop of the Lord of Glory (Heb 2:14, Rom 6:23, Rev 21:8, 12:10, 1Pet 2:24, Rom 5:12,19)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

#3.       David Killed Goliath (1Sam 17:4-8,14-15,17-18,28,45-47, Rom 8:2,1)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please open your Bibles to the Epistle to the Hebrews, Heb 2:12 (2X). We have today a section in the Word of God that is filled with symbolism. We have seen two weeks ago in “Who Are My Brethren,” that the stubbornness of man is very great. But the Lord will come to our aid and He is very strong, and the Lord says in Heb 2:12-13,

Heb 2:12  Saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee.

Heb 2:13, And again, I will put my trust in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me.

The children whom God has given Christ, in verse 12, He called “His Brethren.” It meant that the Lord of Glory had to come down to the level of “His brethren”, for according to verse 12, in the midst of His brethren will He sing praise unto God. And thus, He had to become incarnate, for only as man could He sing praise unto God. Moreover, it is not as Lord over the church, but as “One in the midst of them” is He singing praise unto God. And thus the expression “All of one” in verse 11 is again illustrated and manifested. And then the Lord Jesus said in verse 13, “I will put My trust in Him.” He could not have said this unless God the Son had become Man. When He is considered only as God the Son it would have been impossible that He would say, “I will put My trust in Him.” But these words reflect that the Lord of glory lived here on earth a life of trust in and dependence on God. He has gone before us, setting before us an inspiring example. The path that we are called on to tread is the same that He trod. The race we are commanded to run is the same that He ran. We are to walk and to talk as He did, by faith. How blessed is it to know that when we are called on to walk by faith, to submit ourselves unto and to live in dependency on God, to look away from the troubles of this time to the coming inheritance, that our forerunner has trod the same path, and that He already went before us. From John 10:4 we know that the Good Shepherd walked before us and that we have to experience nothing that He has not already experienced. So we see that fellowship with Christ is no mystical thing, but it is intensely practical; fellowship with Christ means first of all walking by faith, and it also means that we are soldiers for Christ, and that we defend Him when He is attacked.

And then the Lord Jesus says, “Behold I and the children which God hath given me.” It is Christ taking His place before God as Mediator, owning the “children” as God’s gift to Him; it is Christ as Man confessing His oneness with these children and ranking Himself with the saints. We are again drawn to the Gospel of John where the Lord Jesus said in John 6:37, “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” You see, before the foundation of the world God already chose whom He would save through the cross of Christ (Eph 1:4), and He planted their names in the mind of God the Son. These are the children whom the Father has given to Christ, and the Father will draw all of them to the Lord Jesus Christ. We read in John 17:6,

Joh 17:6 ¶  I have manifested thy name unto the men which thou gavest me out of the world: thine they were, and thou gavest them me; and they have kept thy word.

How do we know that the disciples kept these teachings of Jesus? We read in John 17:12,

Joh 17:12  While I was with them in the world, I kept them in thy name: those that thou gavest me I have kept, and none of them is lost, but the son of perdition; that the scripture might be fulfilled.

It was as if the Lord Jesus said: “Here I am, Father, whom Thou didst send out from Thy own bosom out of heaven to earth to gather Thine elect out of the world. I have performed that for which Thou hast sent Me: behold I and the children whom Thou hast given Me.” The Lord Jesus Christ is called the “Everlasting Father” in Isa 9:6, because from everlasting He had children adopted by Him. And keep in mind that the Lord Jesus did not only suffer and die for these 11 disciples, but also for us who are living in this 21st century. We too are His children. Think about that now. Do we believe the Bible is the Word of God? Do we indeed believe that we are His children like we read here? Do we believe that we are presently in the glorious kingdom of Christ and we are surrounded by other faithful children of the Lord Jesus? Do we enjoy the peace with God and with our fellow man, and are we surrounded by the love and affection of our fellow man? Can we now imagine that a son would leave this family, and leave his Father’s home, and leave this utopia, and return to be unequally yoked to the reprobate in the world, and return to the filth of his former life? It would be an unthinkable sin. At best it is the sin of the Prodigal Son, or worse it is the sin of Demas. Either way it is a grievous sin to deny that we are the children of Christ when the Gospel so clearly says that it is so. Pray to God that we will never fall into this kind of sin. Pray to God that we will always remember the cross of Christ, that we never spurn the love of Christ, and we remember Heb 10:38-39,

Heb 10:38-39  Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him. But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul.

And if we have drawn back, pray that the Lord will forgive us this sin also and let us return to have fellowship with Christ and with the family of Christ, for to love the brethren is a sign to us of our salvation. 1John 3:14 says,

1Jo 3:14  We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.

Now, we should not read this as a condition for salvation, for salvation comes freely, without any condition attached to it. Loving the brethren is not a condition, but a gift from God when we have been Born Again. Let us now turn to the intense part of this sermon in Heb 2:14.

#1.       He Also Took Part of the Same (Heb 2:14)

Heb 2:14  Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.

So that He, Christ, “through death might destroy him that had the power of death.” What does that mean? The title of this sermon is, He Destroyed the Lord of Death (2X). There is where we are going. But let us first address the beginning words of this verse, “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same.” We, the children, are partakers of flesh and blood, and Christ is going to take part of the same. And thus, what we see in this verse is that it deals with “The Divine Incarnation”. Christ should become Man and rank Himself alongside of His saints. There are three items that I want to talk about in this sermon: first, that He might render null and void him who had the power of death, that is the Devil (verse 14); second, that He might deliver His people from the bondage of that fear which death had occasioned (verse 15); third, Abraham’s children could only be delivered by Him laying hold of Abraham’s seed (verse 16).

The words, “Forasmuch then” have the meaning, “It is evident hereby” that the Son of God became the Son of Man for the sake of those whom God had given Him. Here we have the eternal Word becoming flesh, the Lord of Glory becoming the Son of Man, the Creator of the universe taking up residence in the womb of a woman, the Almighty Judge of heaven and earth humbling Himself to such an extent that He became subject to the law of God and was judged and bore the penalty equivalent of eternal damnation, this is the great wonder of the Divine Incarnation. That the Creator of angels should leave His throne on high, and descend to this sin cursed earth; that the very One before whom all the angels should bow should, for a season, be made lower than they; that the Lord of glory, who had dwelt in “light unapproachable”, should Himself become partaker of flesh and blood, that is the great wonder of wonders. So wonderful was that event of the Divine Incarnation that the heavenly host descended to proclaim the birth of the Savior to the shepherds in the field. So wonderful was it that the “glory of the Lord” which once filled the temple, appeared again, for the glory of “the glory of the Lord shone round about” the awe-struck shepherds on the plains of Bethlehem. So wonderful was this event that the calendar was changed and it was re-dated from the birth of Christ, and thus the Lord of time has written His signature across the centuries.

Heb 2:14  Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.

If the children which God has given to His Son should be sanctified, then Christ must become “all of one” with them. If those children who are by nature partakers of flesh and blood had to be delivered from him that had the power of death, that is the Devil, then the Sanctifier must also” likewise take part of the same.” If He had to be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God (Heb 2:17), then He must in all things be made like unto His brethren. If He must be able to go to the aid of them that are tempted, then He must Himself suffer being tempted (Heb 2:18), and since God Himself cannot be tempted He had to become Man in order to experience that. This necessity of Divine Incarnation was real, and urgent, and absolute. There was no other way in which the counsels of God’s grace towards His people could be accomplished. If ever we would have to be made like Him, (Rom 8:29) He first had to be made like us. If He was to give us of His Spirit, He must first assume our flesh. If we had to be joined to the Lord and to become “one spirit” with Him (1Cor 6:17), then He must first be joined with our flesh, so as to be “all of one” with us. In summary, if we were to be made partakers of the Divine nature (2Pet 1:4), then He must first be made partaker of the human nature. But of course we could also have derived this from the fact that the Lord Jesus became our Redeemer. The word Redeemer means He had to be a Kinsman before He could be the Redeemer, the Avenger of a crime perpetrated on us, or the One who became our Bridegroom, and thus He had to be incarnated in human flesh before He could be our Kinsman-Redeemer. And so, if we were to be conformed to His image (Rom 8:29), then He must be made in the likeness of sinful flesh; He was not made of sinful flesh, but only in the likeness of sinful flesh, for He must remain the unspotted Lamb of God. If the children of Abraham were to be redeemed (Gal 3:29), then He must take on Him the seed of Abraham (Gal 3:16). And so, the necessity of His Incarnation is very much tied to the nature of His Incarnation. The nature of His Incarnation is characterized by “flesh and blood.” The words “flesh and blood” are joined together five times in the New Testament. They are in Matt 16:17, 1Cor 15:50, Gal 1:16, Eph 6:12, Heb 2:14. It is a humbling expression that is emphasizing the weakness of the flesh and the frailty, the dependency and the mortality of man. Note how in Eph 6:12 flesh and blood are contrasted with the mightier foes against which Christians wrestle. Flesh and blood is the present state of all mankind. There is nothing in physical features to distinguish the elect from the non-elect. God’s children are partakers equally with the children of the Devil, of flesh and blood. And during our regeneration no change is observed concerning this. The limitations and infirmities which flesh and blood involve still remain. God certainly does not want us to be puffed up by our spiritual standing and privileges. God makes us conscious of our infirmities so that we may develop a love and compassion for our fellow man who is still in the hold of sin. And we still need to be reminded ourselves of this every day. That is why God tells us that we must pray without ceasing for our fellow man. That is why the Lord Jesus Christ was “a man of sorrows” for “He also Himself likewise took part of the same.” Thereby we see the amazing condescension of Christ in thus conforming Himself to the condition in which His children were. But let us also remember the uniqueness and the perfection of the Incarnation of Christ. When Christ became a man He did not partake of the foul poison which sin has introduced into the human race. His human nature was not contaminated by the virus of the Fall. He did not partake of original sin, like we all do, and He never sinned once in all of His life. Think of what effect this might have had on His brothers and sisters when He grew up in Nazareth. Were they in awe that He never sinned? Would they rally behind Him in every endeavor they were involved with, because He always gave an accurate advice? His witness was always perfect. The answer is NO! They did not even see His perfection. Whatever it was, perhaps even jealousy, but until the time of the cross His brothers were still unbelievers. And what was the purpose of His Incarnation? It was that “Through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.”

#2.       An Infinite Stoop of the Lord of Glory (Heb 2:14, Rom 6:23, Rev 21:8, 12:10, 1Pet 2:24, Rom 5:12,19)

Heb 2:14  Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil.

He, the Creator of the universe and all that is in it, the Sustainer of all forms of life, and the One who by His providence makes all things to flow to Him, has humbled Himself to the extent that He became not only lower than the angels, and He became the suffering Servant of Jehovah, but He also became our Servant in that He voluntarily took on the guilt of our sins and paid it in full by His sacrifice on the cross. This was an infinite stoop of the Lord of Glory. He is pointing out to those who found the cross such a stumbling block that there was a golden lining to the dark cloud which hung over it. That which to the unaided eye was such a degrading tragedy, was in fact a glorious triumph; for by it the Savior stripped the Devil of his power and wrested from his hands his most awful weapon. But spiritual warfare is so unlike the warfare that we are accustomed with. The cross sufferings of Christ, instead of marking His defeat, were actually a wondrous victory, for by them He overthrew the arch-enemy of God and man. Through His own death He has conquered Satan in the very place where he exercised his sad dominion over men, and where the judgment of God lay heavily upon men. So, how did Christ do it? We have to begin with the question: What is the penalty that Christ endured? It was the wages of sin; our sin and our penalty that He paid on our behalf. What are the wages of sin? Rom 6:23 says, “The wages of sin is death.”

Which death does God have in view? Rev 21:8 says, “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.” If we check this list we find that at one time we all were fearful and unbelieving, and we all were liars, and thus we all deserved to be cast into the lake of fire. We all deserved the second death. This is the wages of sin. This is what we have to pay before we can be admitted into the courts of heaven. This is the weapon that Satan has used against us, for he is “The Accuser of the Brethren” (Rev 12:10). But we cannot pay such an enormous payment; we are too poor for such a payment; we are spiritually bankrupt. But we are sinning every day, and thus Satan had a just claim against us that we should die, and that we should die the second death, which is the wrath of a holy God on guilty sinners. There is justice in the claim of Satan! But it is an inflexible justice; there is not a grain of mercy in his accusation of the entire human race. Satan knows that Almighty God is an infinitely righteous Judge. A righteous Judge will not allow mercy to modify His penalty even if His own Son would stand before Him. This is what Satan is banking on. But then the Lord Jesus Christ took the guilt of all my sins on His account, and He paid the full price for the guilt of my sins in His human nature. That is why the Bible reads in 1Pet 2:24, “Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.” God hereby emphasizes that Christ had to pay for this in His human nature, not in His Divine nature, for God the Son cannot die on a cross, and God the Son cannot be accursed for my sins, and God the Son cannot suffer the equivalent of an eternity in Hell. Man has sinned and man must pay the restitution for sins; no amount of animal sacrifices can take his place. Christ paid the full price for the guilt of all my sins. Christ died the very death that Satan claimed I should die. And when Christ rose from the grave it was God’s sign that the penalty has been fully paid. And so for me, the law was vindicated, sin was put away, death was swallowed up, and Satan’s mighty weapon against me was destroyed.

But this was not the end. Please turn in your Bibles to the Epistle to the Romans, Rom 5:12 (2X). Mankind is an organism, like a fungus is an organism, and the many mushrooms that we see in a certain plot of land actually belong to one fungus. So mankind is one organism; Adam is the federal head of the entire human race in the flesh. God says in Rom 5:12, “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.” All have sinned, and are continually sinning, so that all come short of the glory of God. And so, what Christ has done for me He should do for everyone of His elect. And here the nature of the one organism again enters into the picture. Within the entire human race there is another organism of which Christ is the federal Head; it is the collection of all the elect of God who are chosen to populate this spiritual organism. We read in Rom 5:19 “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.” And thus the nature of the organism dictates that what Christ has done for me also applies to everyone else in the organism: the law was vindicated, sin was put away, death was swallowed up, and Satan’s mighty weapon of condemnation against all the elect was destroyed. What remains of Satan’s mighty weapon is that it is still in force for all those for whom Christ has not died, and most importantly, this inflexible rule of justice is now applied to Satan himself and his fallen angels. The Devil may be said to have the power of death, the second death, but his power against all the elect has been declared null and void, because Christ paid the full price, which is worth an infinity in Hell; and since it is infinite it is sufficient to apply to all the elect whom God intended to save. This is how the Lord Jesus Christ through His suffering and death destroyed him that had the power of death. Now I have used this explanation to me personally, just for clarity, but in reality it should have been applied to Adam who historically was the first of the elect to be saved. But for this second organism, the spiritual organism, Adam is not the federal head but Christ is, for His suffering and death was the payment on our behalf. That is why Christ is called the Second Adam.

To them who believe there is an assurance of victory. If the Devil gets the upper hand of us it is either because of stupid decisions that we make thereby unknowingly negotiate with the Devil, or our lack of faith. To destroy him that had the power of death is to strip him of his power. For this purpose was the Son of God manifested to destroy the works of the Devil, which is: ignorance, error, depravity and misery. Physical death is to us like going to sleep, but we will wake up in the sure and certain hope of a glorious resurrection.

Heb 2:15  And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.

Who are those who feared death? The context shows that these are all those who have not yet been saved. What death do they fear? No, they do not fear physical death, for they fearlessly engage in battle against any nation that comes against us. But they fear that they would violate the law of God, and thus be subject to Hell, and this fear would make them subject to bondage. It is the bondage of the law. All the unsaved are in bondage to the law of God, for this much have they learned since their youth. But what we learn from Rom 8:2-3 is that this is the law of sin and death. This law cannot do what man expects from it, for it is weaker than the power of sin in the flesh. And so, the sin in the flesh will always prevail. Therefore we must be freed from the law, and this can only occur when we have died with Christ and we have been raised with Christ when He was raised from the dead. Our death with Christ has made us free from the law. How do we know if we have died with Christ? We can only know when we have been Born Again, for if we have been Born Again we have also received the faith from God to believe this Gospel, and we have received the love of God which is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost. Only then have we been freed from the bondage that we were subject to all our life.

Please turn in your Bibles to the Prophecy of 1Samuel, 1Sam 17:4 (2X). A beautiful and most complete type of the truth of Heb 2:15 is found in 1Sam 17. We will not read all the verses in 1Sam 17, since we do not have time for that. But as you know, this is the story of David and Goliath. In this picture David is representing Christ, and Goliath is representing Satan.

#3.       David Killed Goliath (1Sam 17:4-8,14-15,17-18,28,45-47, Rom 8:2,1)

In verses 4-8 Satan is harassing the Old Testament saints. We read in 1Sam 17:4-8,

1Sa 17:4-8 And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. And he had an helmet of brass upon his head, and he was armed with a coat of mail; and the weight of the coat was five thousand shekels of brass. And he had greaves of brass upon his legs, and a target of brass between his shoulders. And the staff of his spear was like a weaver’s beam; and his spear’s head weighed six hundred shekels of iron: and one bearing a shield went before him. And he stood and cried unto the armies of Israel, and said unto them, Why are ye come out to set your battle in array? am not I a Philistine, and ye servants to Saul? choose you a man for you, and let him come down to me.

Where was David during the time that Goliath was terrifying the people of God? We read in 1Sam 17:14-15,

1Sa 17:14-15  And David was the youngest: and the three eldest followed Saul. But David went and returned from Saul to feed his father’s sheep at Bethlehem.

And so through the Mosaic economy Christ remained on high in the Father’s house, yet caring for His sheep. Then we see David leaving his Father’s house laden with blessings for his brethren. We read in 1Sam 17:17-18

1Sa 17:17-18  And Jesse said unto David his son, Take now for thy brethren an ephah of this parched corn, and these ten loaves, and run to the camp to thy brethren; And carry these ten cheeses unto the captain of their thousand, and look how thy brethren fare, and take their pledge.

But David meets a sad reception from his brothers, his efforts were unappreciated, his purpose misunderstood, and a false accusation was brought against him. We read in 1Sam 17:28,

1Sa 17:28  And Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men; and Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, Why camest thou down hither and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride, and the naughtiness of thine heart; for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle.

Likewise, when the Lord Jesus came to this earth He was not well received by His brethren, the children of Israel. But what did He come for? He came to bring liberty to the captives who were the elect of God. They did not belong in the hands of Satan. He came to die on a cross so that through His death He might destroy Satan, the lord of Death. And that is what Goliath represented. So David selected five smooth stones out of the brook, a place of running water, typifying “living water”. David, representing Christ, slung one stone, also representing Christ, into Goliath’s head, and it penetrated his armor and it killed him. We read in 1Sam 17:45-47,

1Sa 17:45-47  Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied. This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. And all this assembly shall know that the LORD saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the LORD’S, and he will give you into our hands.

What was David referring to when he said, “And all this assembly shall know that the LORD saveth not with sword and spear?” these are the words Christ would have said, referring to the way in which He does spiritual battle against Satan: The Lord does not save with sword or spear, but that through the death of Christ He might destroy Satan, the lord of Death. And we should not understand that this meant that Satan would be annihilated, for Satan is a spirit, and a spirit remains forever. Therefore Satan would exist in a condition of death in Hell forever. Can we see the typical climax in this story? The children of Israel who lived in bondage for fear of Goliath were suddenly delivered from their fear, because Goliath was dead. Christ has delivered us from our bondage for fear of Hell, for we feared that if we would violate the law we would be sent to Hell. That is the law of sin and death (Rom 8:2). But when Christ delivered us on the cross He paid for the guilt of all our sins, and thus there cannot be any sins left which could send us to Hell, NONE whatsoever. There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit (Rom 8:1). Does this mean then that we can go home and sleep on it? NO, for God said in Rom 8:1, “who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit.” There is work for us to do, but it is not work that brings more condemnation, but it is work that brings God the glory that is due to Him. In other words, there are some fights that we have to get involved in, battles for the army of the Lord. We are ambassadors for Christ and we are fighting the battles of the Lord because we are also soldiers for Christ. Do we have a fighting spirit left in us? A characteristic of these days is that people have no fighting spirit. They prefer to go with the flow. And that is how we risk getting sucked into the tentacles of Satan. That is not the character of a truly Born Again individual. If Christ is saving us He will at the same time give us a fighting spirit, for we are immediately listed into His army. We are free, but are now free to serve Him who purchased us with so great suffering and a death that was so effective that He destroyed the lord of Death.

Heb 2:16  For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.

Who are Abraham’s children and who is Abraham’s seed? Please turn in your Bibles to the Epistle to the Galatians, Gal 3:16 (2X). Historically the Lord Jesus was a descendant of Abraham. And so, when we read in Heb 2:16, “he took on him the seed of Abraham” we realize that this meant that the Lord Jesus was a Hebrew, like Abraham was called a Hebrew (Gen 14:13). But our God is not the God of the Hebrews only. After the cross God enlarged His kingdom to include both Jews and Gentiles. God’s kingdom includes a remnant chosen from all the nations of the world, including a remnant from the nation of Israel. But who is now Abraham’s seed? We read in Gal 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.” Therefore, Christ is the Seed of Abraham.” But Christ is a single individual. Is He the only Seed of Abraham? Now we remember that we are called the Bride of Christ (Rev 21:9), and the Bride shares the name of her Husband. If Christ is called the Seed of Abraham, then there must be a verse that says that we, the elect of God are also called the seed of Abraham. Indeed when we look at Gal 3:29 (2X) we see that we are also called Abraham’s seed.

Gal 3:29, “And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”

And so, when we see in the New Testament or in the Old Testament the word Israel, let us not immediately jump to conclusions, for we must let the context decide which Israel God has in view. It could be Jacob, who is also called Israel, or it could be Old Testament Israel, referring to the thirteen tribes of Israel, or it could be the northern kingdom of Israel consisting of ten tribes of Israel, or it could be the southern kingdom after the northern kingdom was destroyed, or it could be the nation of Israel after the cross, or it could be the Lord Jesus Christ, or it could be the elect from all the nations of the world after the cross. All these are possible interpretations of the name Israel in the Bible. The context will determine which one God has in view.

Now the question arises: Should the physical descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob be called Israel in our days? The present day Jews would certainly like that. But what does God say about that. Please turn one page to your right to Galatians chapter 4, Gal 4:24 (2X). In Galatians chapter 4 God took the historical account of Abraham going into his slave girl Hagar and fathering a son named Ishmael with her. But then God says that this historical account represents an allegory. The two women Sarah and Hagar represent two covenants, one that leads to bondage to sin and Satan and the other which leads to freedom in Christ. We read in Gal 4:24-26,

Ga 4:24-26  Which things are an allegory: for these are the two covenants; the one from the mount Sinai, which gendereth to bondage, which is Agar. For this Agar is mount Sinai in Arabia, and answereth to Jerusalem which now is, and is in bondage with her children. But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all.

The covenant represented by Hagar leads to bondage, for this is the old covenant characterized by the law of sin and death. Anyone who believes that he can obtain salvation by strictly obeying the law of God is under a curse for this is the law of sin and death (Rom 8:2). The present nation of the Jews which consist primarily of unbelieving Jews are such an example, for they adhere only to the law of God. But the covenant represented by Sarah is the only covenant that saves; it is the New Covenant, or the covenant of grace. All the elect of God are in the covenant of grace, and God gives them the faith to believe that they are in the New Covenant, which is the last will and testament of God where all the elect are listed as beneficiaries of this last will and testament of God. Where do the present day Jews fit in? They who are the blood descendants of Jacob and who believe the Lord Jesus as their Savior are the remnant saved by grace from the nation of the Jews. They who are the blood descendants of Jacob and who remain in unbelief concerning the Lord Jesus are described in Gal 4:25 as the children of Hagar, and the Jerusalem that now is, and they are in bondage with their children. They are still under the condemnation of the Lord, for they are still unsaved, for the law of sin and death does not bring salvation. God says in Rev 2:9 and in Rev 3:9 that they are of the synagogue of Satan. God says “they say they are Jews, and are not.” We should note that God anticipated their dispute by stating in John 1:13, “Not of blood”, meaning not of the right bloodline. No one gets into heaven because they are of the right bloodline. On the other hand, those who are saved by grace are under the covenant of grace and are represented by Sarah, “who is the mother of us all”, and “the mother of us all” does not refer to the fact that she is the mother of all mankind, but she is the mother of all believers, like Abraham is called the father of all believers. It is in that sense that she is the mother of us all. This is the sovereignty of God. Since salvation is an infinite gift which cannot be merited, for grace is unmerited favor, therefore God will decide to whom He will give salvation and whom He shall pass by. Therefore He has made Sarah the mother and Abraham the father of all whom He wishes to save. Praise God for such an indescribable gift.

                  AMEN.                       Let us turn to the Lord in prayer.