... Jerusalem ... 22 Just as the new earth and the new heavens will endure by my power, so your descendants and your name will endure ... Isaiah 66 (GNT), 18 ... Jerusalem will be rebuilt, and its PALACE restored. Jeremiah 30:18 (GNT)

21
January
2013

The gathering of God's first-born

23 You have come to the joyful gathering of God's first-born, whose names are written in heaven.
Hebrews 12:23a (GNT)

Whom are God's first-born? What is the absolute right of the first-born?! Should Christians go to the gathering of God's first-born, or do they have their own special place?

Who are those people?

Biblical scripture is very clear about who these people, God's first-born are, Exodus 4:22 (GNT),
22 Then you must tell him that I, the Lord, say, ‘Israel is my first-born son.

11 The Lord says, “When Israel was a child, I loved him and called him out of Egypt as my son. Hosea 11:1 (GNT)

4 They are God's people; he made them his  c h i l d r e n  and revealed his glory to them; he made his covenants[a] with them and gave them the Law; they have the true worship; they have received God's promises; 5 they are descended from the famous Hebrew ancestors; and Christ, as a human being, belongs to their race. May God, who rules over all, be praised forever! Amen. Romans 9:4-5 (GNT)

Just to be clear, God's intention was always that non-Jews would be blessed through his people - Genesis 4:1-3 - as has been happening for ages. And the non-Jews were always invited to come to God's Temple for prayer and offerings - 1 Kings 8:41-43 - as well as to join his congregation of Israel, Isaiah 56:6-8 and Romans 9:23-26. A very good example of some one who joined the Israelites was Ruth as we can read in the book of Ruth.

Those who were far away from God, not belonging to God's chosen people has been brought closer by being part of his chosen people, Ephesians 2:11-18 (GNT),
12 ... You were foreigners and did not belong to God's chosen people. You had no part in the covenants, which were based on God's promises to his people, and you lived in this world without hope and without God. 13 But now, in union with Christ Jesus you, who used to be far away, have been brought near by the blood of Christ ...

So, as far as God is concerned the way to get closer to him and to be part of his congregation of Israel, the believers and worshippers of the most high God, the God of Israel, was and is still present. 

But, do remember, Romans 9:15-16 (GNT),
15 For he said to Moses, “I will have mercy on anyone I wish; I will take pity on anyone I wish.” 16 So then, everything depends, not on what we humans want or do, but only on God's mercy.

Author: © Mrs A. vd Laan-LeitoPosted in: Opinion