Monday, September 17, 2012

Lucky Dogs

If an alien from Outer Space dropped in to eavesdrop on our electoral process, he may return to his planet with the report that DOGS are of great political importance on Earth.  Based on our Twitter conversations, one political faction believes in torturing them on top of moving vehicles while the other wants them served marinated with a side of fava beans.  Believe it or not, this silly controversy has yet to die out.

Now I have to admit, I love my Twitter habit.  It’s a witty and lively diversion while I try to break my other habit and “detox from Fox”.  At least it’s more participatory.  But my favorite pastime lately is studying the amazing relevance that the Bible has to current events.  Of course, for giggles I Googled “dogs in the Bible” the other day. 

I was shocked to find there were 40 references to dogs in the Bible!  When reading through them, I saw a common theme or thread.  Dogs are typically mentioned as a lowly beast, something to be sneered at or condescended to.  The number 40 also has loads of significance, but that would take up another whole blog.  For today, let’s just concentrate on the dog story of the Gentile woman who approached Jesus for assistance.  This story is found two times in the New Testament in both Matthew and Mark.  Here’s the version from Matthew:

The Faith of a Canaanite Woman

21 Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. 22 A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is demon-possessed and suffering terribly.”
23 Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”
24 He answered, I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.
25 The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.
26 He replied, It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”
27 “Yes it is, Lord,” she said. “Even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.”
28 Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed at that moment.
Why is this passage so significant and relevant for today?  It’s because in Christian circles today there is a false doctrine known as “Replacement Theology”.  In a nutshell, it falsely states that since the Jews rejected Jesus, God cast them aside and REPLACED them with the Gentiles.  However, I can see NO evidence for this in the Bible.  Instead, I see verses like this:

Isaiah 49:14-16

1But Zion said, “The Lord has forsaken me,
    the Lord has forgotten me.”
15 “Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
    and have no compassion on the child she has borne?
Though she may forget,
    I will not forget you!
16 See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands;
    your walls are ever before me.

As Christians, we always like to fantasize about what it would have been like to be living during Jesus’ time on earth.  Well, here we have a classic example.  When the Gentile woman approached Jesus for help he admonished her that he had only come at that time for the Jewish people.  Did Jesus think we (Gentiles) are DOGS???  Much to my chagrin, Jesus did not say some politically correct answer to the Canaanite woman like “Oh no, you are not a dog” and then give her a pep talk about having more self esteem.  He told the woman that because of her correct attitude, she would get His help.  I’m sure that most modern day Christians would get their theological knickers in a twist if they were personally witnessing this event.  I believe that Jesus was acknowledging the correct theological position that Non-Jews/Gentiles should have towards Jews.  We should be expressing supreme relief and gratitude that we are invited to share the covenantal blessings of Israel.  Lucky Dogs!!!  We should have the enthusiasm of DOGS that are now fed filet mignon at the table with the masters.  I think the superiority attitude that many Christians have today regarding Jews is downright displeasing to the Lord, un-Biblical and is a stumbling block to offering the sweet aroma of Christ’s sacrifice as the Messiah to the Jewish people.

I humbly submit that the correct view that Christians should hold of Jews is:  They are our Covenantal brothers and sisters.  THEY are the original, true-born—blood connected (Jesus from the branch of David) children of God (literally).  We are the ADOPTED children of God.  Just as in a family that contains both natural born and adopted children—The natural born children should not feel superior to the adopted children.  They should consider the adopted children as their brothers and sisters.  The adopted children should not feel superior to the natural born children.  They did not “replace” (replacement theology) the natural children.  They have the same legal rights as the natural children and they are loved the same (in a healthy family).  So…we enjoy the covenantal blessings of God through Abraham’s promises by being “grafted” or “adopted” children of God. 

The Palestinian Question:  Now, on to modern day issues and problems.  Before I get into this section, I want to unequivocally state that God loves ALL people and offers his plan of salvation to ALL people on the planet.  While the Jewish people are his covenantal people in the Bible—God freely extends his grace to any who will come.  As a Gentile, I most certainly can relate to the necessity of this position and feel deeply for other Non-Jewish peoples that wish to be on right terms with Yahweh. 

However, when Israel is attacked or hurt: What should our position be?  We should be UPSET!  They are our brothers and sisters.  We shouldn’t say—well, they deserve what they are getting because they haven’t accepted Jesus as the Messiah.  We should be very distressed and supportive. 

Jesus LAMENTED over Jerusalem.  He said he felt like a mother hen yearning to put her wings over her chicks (that is how Jesus expressed his feelings about Jews and Jerusalem).

O Jerusalem, Jerusalem…how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.  You will not see me again until you say “Baruch Haba Bashem Adonai” (Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord).
~Matthew 23:37 & 39

Here’s where we (Gentile Christians) have to be extremely careful.  We simply CANNOT support any position that requires Israel to deny it’s historical past and its right to the lands the God Almighty gave them.  That does NOT mean, that every single action that Israel takes is holy and right.  Just like every single action that the United States takes is not always holy and right.  We need to study the scriptural promises YAHWEH made to the Jewish people.  If there is any religious, political or secular push to OPPOSE those promises—we cannot support them.  However, there is no problem in calling out both Israel and the United States when they go “off the reservation” when it comes to God’s Words.

For instance, I am vehemently Pro-Life.  Unfortunately, I currently reside in a nation that sanctions infanticide—much to my total dismay.  While I am on this Earth, I will give ZERO support to any doctrine, politician, or organization that supports or celebrates DEATH.  I will also not support any radical craziness such as shooting abortion doctors in the name of God.  That also violates my beliefs of “Thou Shalt Not Murder”.  However…if you put a 12 gauge shotgun to my head, and tell me that I personally must assist in an abortion (like nurses, insurance providers, and employers are being asked today with the HHS mandate), I simply will NOT do it.  The same way the small remnant of German Christians refused to assist the Nazis in their extermination of the Jews, Christians MUST NOT assist in the extermination of innocent life.  There are some times in life, when compromise is not an option.  If we are persecuted, jailed, or arrested for refusing to take part in murder—so be it.  However, we cannot call on God to save us if we are hurling Maletov cocktails at abortion clinics.  We need to be actively involved in supporting legitimate Pro-Life organizations and actively involved in opposing (in a lawful and Godly manner) any Pro-Death policies. 

Now, back to the dog analogy:  In my household, we lavish attention on our pets.  We have always had a dog as part of our family.  The short times that we have had between the deaths of our beloved 4-legged companions made the house just seem empty.  Several times we have said “Let’s wait to get another dog—it’s just too much trouble and pain”.  Nevertheless, a few months later we would invariably find ourselves at the pound or the pet store.  

My husband, in particular, would like to scoop our dogs up in his arms like a baby and pour love on them.  Invariably, every time he would do this, our kids would come running from all over the house.  Daddy did not seem very interesting until he began lavishing his attention on another.  We would ultimately end up doing some sort of family group hug to accommodate everyone!--The dog in the middle lapping it all up.  This is the picture I have in my head of Jesus.  He has scooped us up (Gentiles).  If we can remain with a tail wagging good attitude towards the “children” (Jews) they will eventually come running to Him.  We should be a family picture of spiritual group hugs. 
In conclusion…American Christians have to stop “rolling over” to popular Replacement Theology falsehoods.  We need to support Pro-Israel policies in our American leaders and elections.  As dogs elevated to the “Master’s Table”, we need to “stop”, “sit” and extend a friendly “paw” to our covenantal Jewish brothers and sisters. 

If we don’t do this, America may soon find itself in the doghouse. 

It has pleased the Providence of the ‘first Cause,’ the Universal Cause, that Abraham should give Religion, not only to the Hebrews but to Christians and…, the greatest Part of the Modern civilized World."
~John Adams (2nd President of the United States of America)

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.
~Romans 1:16

Yahshua HaMashiach—Jesus our Messiah

Please join us in the Grassroots movement National Day of Repentance:
We have already begun "10 days of awe" from 9/16/12-9/25/12--a season of "affliction of soul" to prepare for the upcoming Day of Repentance. 
In honor of our Judeo-Christian heritage, Americans will pray and fast from Sunset on 9/25/12 through Nightfall on 9/26/12.
 This will also kick off 40 days of prayer until the 11/6/2012 election:
40 Days to Save America

No comments:

Post a Comment