Questions I’d like answered – 1 – Israel and church

Posted: January 24, 2013 by J in General

Here at The Grit we have more questions than you could poke a stick at. Sometimes the pressure gets too great, and I just have to let some out. This short series is a kind of de-pressurising.

But also, I’d like some answers. I really would, and I’m hoping you can help with that.

Here’s no.1

Jesus was supposed to redeem and restore Israel. That’s what the infancy narratives in Luke lead us to expect would be his main accomplishment. Jesus called twelve disciples: surely symbolic of a new reconstitution of Israel. Renewed Israel: that’s the goal.

In the end, much of the nation rejects Jesus. But the Christian church is born in Jerusalem, and spreads out to ‘the ends of the earth’. The Christian church is composed of Jews and Gentiles, one people, unified in Christ. In Luke/Acts this church is the main result or outcome of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection.

QUESTION: So what happened about the new Israel? Did Jesus fail to live up to expectation? Or is the church the renewed Israel?

  1. Seumas says:

    Here is my answer in 3 sentences.

    Jesus is the New Israel. The Church ‘is’ Israel insomuch as it is the reconstituted people of God in Christ. It’s all about the ‘in Christ’ bit.

    • Jonathan says:

      That makes good sense, Seumas. I know this is a debated point – are there any easy ways for us to see what you’re saying in the Scriptures?

      Do others want to argue for different answers?

  2. Seumas says:

    I think the gospels bring this out, Jesus as the one true Israelite, the recapitulation of Israel’s story in early Matthew, etc. I would have to give it some more thought than I have time right now though.

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