Post 126 / The Next Language
January 24, 2023
Those “Other Sheep” 2
From a cosmic perspective it is logical that Jesus should focus His earthly time on the “lost sheep of the house of Israel.” It was their response to the overtures to the Kingdom of God that would affect the remaining history of the world. It was only a matured, fully informed body of Jewish leadership that could trigger the events that would lead to the death of their King. And it was only their blind allegiance to the limited power that Rome allowed them that ultimately came out with the words, “We have no king but Caesar.” This filled the cup of God’s wrath and ended the Jewish nation and the temple system in AD 70. Meanwhile the successive Kingdom flourished under the astonishing leadership of the resurrected Christ and His Spirit.
The record is quite clear that with the advent of Christ the heavens and the earth converged for the birth of both John and Jesus. Angels and heavenly hosts were activated to make important announcements. The “star in the east” led the Magi. Satan himself was enlisted to put Jesus to the test as soon as He started his public ministry with baptism. God Himself spoke at least three times to directly affirm Jesus and His words. One of those times was in the presence of transcended Moses and Elijah. The sun went dark and the earth shook to the point of tearing the veil in the holy place from top to bottom.
All this is to say nothing of the hundreds of prophesies from their own Scriptures that clearly predicted the place and the time of the arrival and ancestry of the Messiah. This event was not unexpected. How else could you explain the throngs that responded to the “voice in the wilderness”?
What is harder to understand is how those closest to the scrolls and the service of God were the ones that missed it altogether. On a daily basis they were handling the artifacts that were instituted by God Himself to point to the Anointed One. They were guardians of the prophecies and genealogies that could have pinpointed the circumcision of a child from Bethlehem. Apart from a few faithful seekers like Simeon, Anna, Zacharias, and Nicodemus, they remained in unbelieving complacency that blossomed into jealous defiance.
Even the popular throngs that shifted from John to Jesus fell away when they learned that it wasn’t about free meals and a King that would throw off the Romans.
Amazingly, some of those most responsive to Jesus were non-Jews. The Maji (wise men) were the first. Much could be said about how they probably followed declarations of the Babylonian kings and the prophecies of Daniel. Whatever else they knew, it is apparent that God Himself took care of guiding them to Jerusalem. Why they would seek a Jewish King is a story yet untold. Had they heard these decrees from Babylon?
[Dan 3:28-29 KJV] 28 [Then] Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed [be] the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God. 29 Therefore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and language, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill: because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort.
[Dan 4:1-3 KJV] 1 Nebuchadnezzar the king, unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you. 2 I thought it good to shew the signs and wonders that the high God hath wrought toward me. 3 How great [are] his signs! and how mighty [are] his wonders! his kingdom [is] an everlasting kingdom, and his dominion [is] from generation to generation.
[Dan 4:34-37 KJV] 34 And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion [is] an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom [is] from generation to generation: 35 And all the inhabitants of the earth [are] reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and [among] the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou? 36 At the same time my reason returned unto me; and for the glory of my kingdom, mine honour and brightness returned unto me; and my counsellors and my lords sought unto me; and I was established in my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added unto me. 37 Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works [are] truth, and his ways judgment: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase.
[Dan 6:25-28 KJV] 25 Then king Darius wrote unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you. 26 I make a decree, That in every dominion of my kingdom men tremble and fear before the God of Daniel: for he [is] the living God, and stedfast for ever, and his kingdom [that] which shall not be destroyed, and his dominion [shall be even] unto the end. 27 He delivereth and rescueth, and he worketh signs and wonders in heaven and in earth, who hath delivered Daniel from the power of the lions. 28 So this Daniel prospered in the reign of Darius, and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian.
[John 4:21-24 KJV] 21 Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. 22 Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. 24 God [is] a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship [him] in spirit and in truth.
[John 4:39-42 KJV] 39 And many of the Samaritans of that city believed on him for the saying of the woman, which testified, He told me all that ever I did. 40 So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days. 41 And many more believed because of his own word; 42 And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard [him] ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world.
The Gadarene Demoniac
[Mar 5:18-20 KJV] 18 And when he was come into the ship, he that had been possessed with the devil prayed him that he might be with him. 19 Howbeit Jesus suffered him not, but saith unto him, Go home to thy friends, and tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee. 20 And he departed, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him: and all [men] did marvel.
ten cities=deka, ten, and polis, a city, a district on the east and south-east of the Sea of Galilee containing “ten cities,” which were chiefly inhabited by Greeks. It included a portion of Bashan and Gilead, and is mentioned three times in the New Testament (Mat 4:25; Mar 5:20; 7:31). — Easton’s Bible Dictionary
[Mat 8:8-13 KJV] 8 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. 9 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]. 10 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. 11 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. 12 But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 13 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.
(Gr. basilikos, i.e., “king’s man”), an officer of state (John 4:49) in the service of Herod Antipas. He is supposed to have been the Chuza, Herod’s steward, whose wife was one of those women who “ministered unto the Lord of their substance” (Luk 8:3). This officer came to Jesus at Cana and besought him to go down to Capernaum and heal his son, who lay there at the point of death. Our Lord sent him away with the joyful assurance that his son was alive. — Easton’s Bible Dictionary
The woman from the borders of Tyre and Sidon whose daughter Jesus healed is described as “a Greek, a Syrophoenician by race” (Mr 7:26), and again as “a Canaanitish woman” (Mt 15:22). This seems to mean that she was of Canaanite descent, a native of the Phoenician seaboard, Greek in religion, and probably also in speech. — From International Standard Bible Encyclopaedia
[Mar 7:24, 26-29 KJV] 24 And from thence he arose, and went into the borders of Tyre and Sidon, and entered into an house, and would have no man know [it]: but he could not be hid. … 26 The woman was a Greek, a Syrophenician by nation; and she besought him that he would cast forth the devil out of her daughter. 27 But Jesus said unto her, Let the children first be filled: for it is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast [it] unto the dogs. 28 And she answered and said unto him, Yes, Lord: yet the dogs under the table eat of the children’s crumbs. 29 And he said unto her, For this saying go thy way; the devil is gone out of thy daughter.
[Jhn 12:20-21 KJV] 20 And there were certain Greeks among them that came up to worship at the feast: 21 The same came therefore to Philip, which was of Bethsaida of Galilee, and desired him, saying, Sir, we would see Jesus.
[John 12:23-33 KJV] 23 And Jesus answered them, saying, The hour is come, that the Son of man should be glorified. 24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. 25 He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that hateth his life in this world shall keep it unto life eternal. 26 If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will [my] Father honour. 27 Now is my soul troubled; and what shall I say? Father, save me from this hour: but for this cause came I unto this hour. 28 Father, glorify thy name. Then came there a voice from heaven, [saying], I have both glorified [it], and will glorify [it] again. 29 The people therefore, that stood by, and heard [it], said that it thundered: others said, An angel spake to him. 30 Jesus answered and said, This voice came not because of me, but for your sakes. 31 Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out. 32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all [men] unto me. 33 This he said, signifying what death he should die.
“If lifted up,” means not only after that I have been lifted up, but, through the virtue of that uplifting. And truly, the death of the Cross, in all its significance, revealed in the light, and borne in upon the heart, by the power of the Holy Ghost, possesses an attraction over the wide world–to civilized and savage, learned and illiterate, alike–which breaks down all opposition, assimilates all to itself, and forms out of the most heterogeneous and discordant materials a kingdom of surpassing glory, whose uniting principle is adoring subjection “to Him that loved them.” “Will draw all men ‘UNTO ME,'” says He. — Jamieson, Fauccet, and Brown
[Luk 23:3-4, 22 KJV] 3 And Pilate asked him, saying, Art thou the King of the Jews? And he answered him and said, Thou sayest [it]. 4 Then said Pilate to the chief priests and [to] the people, I find no fault in this man. … 22 And he said unto them the third time, Why, what evil hath he done? I have found no cause of death in him: I will therefore chastise him, and let [him] go.
[John 19:7-8, 12 KJV] 7 The Jews answered him, We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God. 8 When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he was the more afraid; … 12 And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar’s friend: whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar.
[Mar 15:10 KJV] 10 For he knew that the chief priests had delivered him for envy.
[Mat 27:19 KJV] 19 When he was set down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, Have thou nothing to do with that just man: for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.
[Mat 27:24-25 KJV] 24 When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but [that] rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed [his] hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye [to it]. 25 Then answered all the people, and said, His blood [be] on us, and on our children.
The soldiers at the cross
[Mat 27:54 KJV] 54 Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.
[Mar 15:39 KJV] 39 And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God.
When you consider in the aggregate the response of the non Jews to the inadvertent exposure to Christ it is clear that they found credibility in His message and His person. Contrary to what you would think from the not so distant past of so called Messiahs fighting the Romans. The truth about Jesus penetrated to the very ranks of the soldiers and the household of Herod whose employees were actually supporting Jesus. And don’t forget those dreams delivered to the Wise Men and to Joseph and to Pilate’s own wife.
Even Jesus was amazed at the tenacious faith of the Centurion and the Syrophoenician women whom he went out of His way to dismiss. He seemed to ignore the Greeks in the temple that sought Him. He was very aware of the flood of entrants that was about to storm the kingdom from around the world after that “seed” would die and spring forth in new life. Soon the Greeks and every nation would be able to walk through a torn veil to the very holy place. What a contrast to being excluded to the court of the Gentiles. Soon they would participate in the invitation in Hebrews:
[Heb 10:19-25 KJV] 19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20 By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; 21 And [having] an high priest over the house of God; 22 Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold fast the profession of [our] faith without wavering; (for he [is] faithful that promised;) 24 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some [is]; but exhorting [one another]: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
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