IMPERATIVE OF IDENTITY REPLACEMENT IN THE BELIEVER
June 18, 2012
The following is a discussion with our sister “Esther” in Israel on the imperative of natural identity replacement by spiritual identity—a concept core to the meaning of conversion and new birth in Christ, but hardly understood or taught anywhere. The context for this discussion is a messianic article that emphasizes the importance of natural Jewish identity in understanding the fulfillment of end time prophecy.
Identity confusion between spiritual and natural creations is at the heart of all spiritual conflict that true believers experience in the world, whether it be with messianics, or “believers” from any national culture and heritage in whom the cross has not yet worked to put natural identity to death—especially in America. It is also at the heart of the perversion of the prophetic movement and false prophecy, including dominionism. There is hardly a more critical truth in which the Holy Spirit would establish us than that of spiritual identity replacement and the outworking of it in the saving of our souls. As pertains to Messianism, the enemy has especially clouded the issue by creating a false conflict over the term “replacement,” using a false meaning to prevent embrace of a true meaning. For more specifics on this, one may consult my detailed discussion on The Replacement Theology Conundrum.
Today’s conversation includes the full article in question, which is a bit lengthy. If you are not interested in the article but want to just cut to the chase, you may skip to the bottom and ready my response on the content. Please also note, I have no personal knowledge of the article’s author, and nothing I say should be interpreted as a personal “put down” of the writer or Mike Bickle. We need to pray for all teachers and prophets who demonstrate a lack of clarity regarding our spiritual identity in Christ.
Chris, here is the flowering Israel idol as aggressively taught by Avner and other "messianics" promoting this line of thought, along with an anti-gentile attack on believers who "see" spiritually but are perceived as replacement theologists. This virus is increasingly infecting many out there and on our own battlefield, a grave sign of enemy infiltration in the Lord's field. Moreover, Avner is a close friend of Mike Bickle and IHOP where one of Avner's sons attends bible school. My friends are horrified. Read it and weep.
What will the Jewish people’s acceptance of Jesus be but life from the dead? Romans 11:15
The restoration of David’s throne
Every believer in King Yeshua is looking forward to His soon return to this earth. In that day the knowledge of YHVH will cover the earth as the waters cover the sea (Isaiah 11:9; Habakkuk 2:14). Messiah’s teaching will flow from Jerusalem (Isaiah 2:3; Micah 4:2), and He will instruct all nations concerning His ways.
For many, it is a joy to think about the future day when Christ will rule over the nations. Yet so many followers of Yeshua are unaware that the nature of Messiah’s person, kingdom and dynasty will be strikingly Jewish. So many believers are unaware of the Jewish nature of the future kingdom because so many Christian leaders shy away from equipping their people on these issues.
Here are a few thoughts on biblical passages regarding the restoration of David’s throne – the rebuilding of what Amos describes as the “shanty (or hut, hovel or tabernacle; see Isaiah 1:7-8) of David which is fallen” (Amos 9:11ff; see also the 40 page article “A Messianic Perspective on the Restoration of David’s Tabernacle” https://davidstent.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/davidstabernacle.pdf).
Dying to see a plan come together
Sometimes, before God’s prophetic promise can be fulfilled in that person’s life, the main recipient of the covenant promise has to die first. On some occasions the key to unlock the door of God’s promise can only be grasped on the other side of death.
Some of the most significant covenants made between God and Jewish men (the Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants) have aspects that will only be fulfilled after the future physical resurrections of Abraham and David. When one considers the New Covenant (which required Yeshua’s death and resurrection to be activated), its future fulfillment will flower only when the Jewish people become spiritually resurrected (see Jeremiah 31:33-34; Romans 11:12, 15, 23-27).
Isaiah the prophet described that Messiah Yeshua would see the good pleasure of YHVH prospering in His hand – but only after Yeshua would render Himself an asham (Hebrew, a guilt offering) and be buried with a rich man in His death (Isaiah 53:9,10). Only after His death and resurrection would YHVH’s Servant justify many through bearing their sins and iniquities (Isaiah 53:11-12).
The same is true for Abraham. The divine promises regarding the Promised Land of Israel include borders that Abraham has never possessed (see Genesis 12:1, 7; 13:14-17; 15:18-21; 17:8, 21; 18:19; 22:15-18; 24:7; 25:5-6; 26:1-5; 27:27-29, 37; 28:3-4, 12-16; 32:12; 35:9-12; 46:1-4; 48:1-4, 21-22; 49:10; 50:24-25). Abraham’s promised seed through Isaac and Jacob never possessed the land in fullness either. Indeed, even up to our own day this promise has not been totally fulfilled.
Ø The divine promises concerning the Land of Israel will be totally fulfilled when God resurrects Abraham and gives him the land as his Messianic inheritance.
The long wait of faith
Hebrew 11:8-12 describes Abraham’s life in Canaan 4,000 years ago – living like a stranger in the Promised Land, waiting for YHVH’s promised inheritance in the land of Canaan (Hebrews 11: 9-10). The writer says, “All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance…” (Hebrews 11:13).
Joseph prophesied the return of the Jewish people from Egypt by faith, trusting in God’s power to accomplish what He had promised concerning the Land of Israel (Hebrews 11:22).
Even King David did not receive the fullness of the kingdom promised to him (Hebrews 11:32, 39), “And all these, having gained approval through their faith, did not receive what was promised.”
A prophetic key is concealed in Hebrews 11:17-18, “By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was offering up his only begotten son; it was he to whom it was said, ‘In Isaac your descendants shall be called.’ He considered that God is able to raise people even from the dead, from which he also received him back as a type.”
Abraham believed that God would keep His promises, even if he would have to wait until after the death of his son Isaac.
He knew, believed and trusted that God could raise Isaac from the dead. It was Abraham’s belief in the resurrection that saw him through the trial of sacrifice in the region of Mount Moriah.
In the same way, Abraham believed God when YHVH promised to give him the entire Land of Canaan as his physical inheritance – even if he had to die before fully receiving it. He knew that with God, a promise is a promise. God could and would raise Abraham from the dead if need be!
On the Day of Resurrection, Abraham will stand to his feet, beholding the face of God in righteous satisfaction (see Psalm 17:15). He will then receive the keys to the land of Israel, the Land of Promise. He (along with his chosen descendants the Jewish people) will become (as an amazing verse tells us in Romans 4:13) “the heir of the world” (see also Luke 1:54-55, 70-74).
Dem bones gonna rise again
When the God of Israel established His covenant with David son of Jesse (2 Samuel 7; 1 Chronicles 17; Psalm 89) He promised David many things, only some of which have been fulfilled.
In the same way that Abraham will only receive the fullness of the promise when he will be resurrected, King David will receive the fullness of God’s promise to him in the Davidic Covenant at his own physical resurrection.
The Apostle Paul in his Shabbat sermon at the synagogue in Pisidian Antioch, emphasized that “David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep, and was laid among his fathers and underwent decay” (Acts 13:36).
Yet the word of God promises that David himself will one day receive the fullness of the promise: he will rule over the Jewish people forever, something that can only be possible after David’s resurrection: “They will live on the land that I gave to Jacob My servant, in which your fathers lived; and they will live on it, they, and their sons and their sons’ sons, forever; and David My servant will be their prince forever” (Ezekiel 37:25; see also Ezekiel 34:23-24; 37:24; Hosea 3:5 etc.).
When Yeshua returns as King of kings and Lord of all the earth, He will reign from Jerusalem as David's Greater Son (Matthew 22:41-46; Romans 1:3; 2 Timothy 2:8). David will be raised from the dead, and he will reign as viceroy under Messiah Yeshua's supreme command. The Davidic dynasty will reign under the tutelage of King David himself, as it was in ancient days (see Psalm 122:4-5; Amos 9:11; Jeremiah 30:9; 33:21-22, 26).
The New Covenant teaches us that God’s promised gift (the Messiah Son of David) needed to die and be resurrected for that covenant to be birthed. In Romans 1:1-4, Paul teaches that even though God’s Good News had long been prophesied in the Holy Scriptures, its realization involved the fact that His own Son – “born of a descendant of David according to the flesh – was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Messiah Yeshua our Lord.”
Here comes the sun
We can have absolute confidence that these Davidic events will come to pass with certainty, because YHVH has given us an iron-clad promise in Jeremiah 33:19-21: “The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, saying, ‘Thus says YHVH, If you can break My covenant for the day and My covenant for the night, so that day and night will not be at their appointed time, then My covenant may also be broken with David My servant…’ ”
Since no human being will ever have the power to stop day and night (which would necessitate stopping the turning of the earth and the sun), YHVH used this figure of speech to communicate overwhelming encouragement to us that His covenant to David and to his house is unshakeable and eternal.
Guess who’s coming to dinner
Persian Sufis have a proverb, “Do not invite an elephant trainer into your living room unless you have room for an elephant.” In other words, be aware that actions have ramifications. God made certain theological declarations; we can count on it that there will be practical consequences!
Some of the clauses of the Davidic Covenant include:
* everlasting peace for the Jewish people
* the destruction of all of Israel’s enemies, and
* exclusive and eternal possession of the entire land of Israel by the people of Israel (see 2 Samuel 7:10; 1 Chronicles 17:9-10, 21-22).
These are some ramifications of the fullness of the Davidic covenant. There will be wonderfully practical consequences for the entire Jewish people and for the whole Land of Israel.
As well, it’s worth remembering that YHVH promised three blessings to David personally:
* a Royal House or dynasty of his own (the House of David, Israel’s ongoing Jewish Royal Family; see 2 Samuel 7:11-13);
* the international reign not only of David, but also of David’s descendants (Psalm 89:20-29); and
* the eternal reign of David’s descendants (2 Samuel 7:13, 16, 19, 25-26; Jeremiah 33:17, 21-22, 26; Psalm 89:4, 29, 34-37).
Ø When we pray, “even so, come Lord Yeshua!”, remember that He is not coming back to this earth with no backup . He is bringing with Him a whole Davidic entourage. From God’s perspective Biblical Restoration is not a generic term; it has strong Jewish ramifications as well!
Prophetic ramifications of Davidic restoration
When the full restoration of David’s governmental rule comes to pass, some of the future benefits described in Scripture include:
* world peace (Isaiah 2:4);
* universal justice (Isaiah 9:7);
* the limiting of the effects of the Fall (Isaiah 11:6-9);
* the physical presence of YHVH in Jerusalem (Jeremiah 31:6, Ezekiel 48:35, Isaiah 33:21-22);
* a physical Temple located on Mount Moriah, which will also be a House of Prayer for all nations with a Jewish flavor (Isaiah 56:7);
* the Negev deserts blossoming like the rose with perennial water sources (Isaiah 35:1-10); and
* wonderful blessings of rain for Israel and the world (Joel 2:18-27, Zechariah 14:17).
The full restoration of David’s Covenant will bring overflowing physical blessings for Israel and the world (see Isaiah 27:6, 55:3, 12-13).
The return of the Jewish Messiah will be accompanied by the restoration of His family dynasty, the Royal Family of the House of David. That restored dynasty will rule over both the Jewish people and the world from the capitol city of a Jewish land which will be experiencing the fullness of YHVH’s blessings.
The promise of Jewish physical restoration to the entire land of Israel (Jeremiah 31:5-6, 50:19), the spiritual salvation of the entire Jewish nation (Jeremiah 31:31-34; 50:20), and governmental restoration of the Davidic dynasty (Amos 9:11-12, Isaiah 2:1-5, Jeremiah 33:19-26), will all be fulfilled prophecy for Israel in that day, because the zeal of YHVH of armies will perform this (Isaiah 9:7).
Some of this teaching, though profoundly biblical, may be new to you. If that is so, I encourage you not to stumble over God’s marvelous plans for His Jewish people, but to treasure these and meditate on them in your heart. And remember the apostolic declaration in Romans 11:18, 20, 25, 29: “Don’t be arrogant towards the Jewish people, don’t be conceited towards them, and don’t be ignorant of their calling. The calling and the gifts given to the Jewish people (by the Messiah of Israel) are irrevocable.”
Living in a political world
Bob Dylan once said, “We live in a political world, where courage is a thing of the past.” As believers grasp that the God of all creation is restoring His people to the Land of Israel, resituating them on the chessboard of the nations – we also realize that (from Satan’s perspective) Israel has now become a stationary target.
In the 1930’s and 40’s, believers who stood with Israel and who tried to save Jewish lives, speedily came to the realization that these endeavors required taking a stand against Hitler’s genocidal fury. And that had definite political consequences. Rees Howell’s intercessory prayer meetings took what could be seen as a political stand – they prayed for the defeat of Nazi Germany, the victory of the Allied armies, and the protection, physical restoration and spiritual salvation of the Jewish people to their own Promised Land. Their stand for a return to Zion meant that they were intercessory Zionists – believers, encouragers and advocates of the prophesied return of the Jewish people to Zion, their capitol city and their God-given homeland.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Christian convictions led him to help smuggle Jews out of Germany, and to support a band of brave military and political leaders who tried to assassinate Adolf Hitler. They saw no conflict between their actions and their Messianic faith. Neither did Corrie ten Boom and her extended family in the Netherlands.
Ø Standing with the Jewish people will eventually mean becoming a paraclete – someone who comes alongside and serves as a defense attorney – (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paraclete) for them, for their scattered people, and for their national existence and survival on the playing fields of the states of the world.
As we meditate on these Scriptures, as they begin to inform our dreams and our prayers, we look forward to the soon re-establishment of Messiah’s rule and reign in Jerusalem. We expectantly peer through the fog of history present into history future, longing for day when we will more clearly understand and embrace the fullness of YHVH’s strategic plan and court order on earth.
And part of that will involve the re-establishment of the Royal Family of the House of David as the greatest and grandest of all the royal lineages on the face of Planet Earth!
Ø “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for He has visited us and accomplished redemption for His people, and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the House of David His servant (as He spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from of old), salvation from our enemies, and from the hand of all who hate us; to show mercy toward our fathers, and to remember His holy covenant (the oath which He swore to Abraham, our father); to grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve Him without fear in holiness and righteousness before Him all our days” (Luke 1:68-79).
Your prayers and support hold up our arms and are the enablement of God to us in the work He has called us to do!
In Messiah Yeshua,
Donations can be sent to:
FINAL FRONTIER MINISTRIES
BOX 121971 NASHVILLE TN 37212-1971 USA
Donations can also be made on-line (by PayPal) through: www.davidstent.org
OK. I’ve read this.
Basically, everything [Mr. Boskey] says, while true, is perceived through a fleshly veil, which in turn makes it false. I’m reminded of Paul’s word about the “veil” in 2 Corinthians 3:
14 But their minds were blinded. For until this day the same veil remains unlifted in the reading of the Old Testament, because the veil is taken away in Christ. 15 But even to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart. 16 Nevertheless when one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.
As you already know, Messianics approach Christ through a fleshly veil. That is the essence of what I have taught in the treatises, especially in the Problem of Messianic Judaism where I say in Part 2
Virtually all “Messianic / Christian” debate is conducted around the doctrinal issues of Paul’s writings and activities, and also the meanings of the Restoration prophecies. To be sure, the prophetic and apostolic writings are at issue, and we will tackle them in this treatise. But the discussions from these platforms never prove conclusive. The reason they are never alone conclusive is because the scriptures are being discussed through different lenses.
As long as the difference in the Messianic and pure New Covenant lenses remains unexposed, the scripture-based debate will remain unresolved. The purpose of this treatise is to address the root lens differences between Messianic and pure New Covenant believers, and from there shed light on the larger bodies of scripture.
New Covenant believers look at Yeshua through the lens of the Spirit. Messianics look at Him through the lens of the flesh, which is a veil.
New Covenant believers see Christ through His transcendent identity as the Son of God beyond the Law.
Messianics see Christ through His original natural identity subject to the confines of the Law. (Hence their concept of the “new covenant” is not new at all. It is just a facelift on the Old Covenant.)
Thus New Covenant believers have a liberated view of Christ. Messianics have a bound view. They are in bondage. And as long as that is the case, there will remain a division in the body of Christ. Messianism is a strange half-way house between pure Judaism and complete New Covenant faith.
So what Boskey is saying is right. It’s just that everything he is saying has a transcendent glorified meaning which he is blind to, and not the carnal meaning he assigns to it. Boskey does not understand the meaning of the term “resurrection” which he uses. Resurrection is glorified life. It is not carnally rooted or identified. In reality, the Messianic concept of resurrection is more akin to “reincarnation” than resurrection. They see resurrection as a reincarnation of fleshly identity somehow “perfected.” They believe that when Jewish saints are resurrected, they come back as they were in Adam, only “better” than they were before. So there you have it—a constant confusion of spiritual and natural identity. That’s the essence of the problem of Messianism.
One can ask this question: Does the Spirit replace the flesh in the life of the believer? Or does it somehow “infuse” the flesh? It’s quite clear from all Pauline discussion of the relationship of the Spirit to the flesh, that the Spirit replaces (“casts out”) the flesh. It does not accommodate it or infuse it in any way. (I dealt with this in Part 3 of the True Dominion treatise as well.)
While Messianics would accept this in theory, the problem is they do not realize that the concept of “flesh” extends to the root of identity, not merely the power of sin in the body. Flesh is at root a matter of identity in mankind, and secondarily a force in the soul and body. Once that is understood, then the idea of identity replacement becomes obvious for what it is and must become to us. For every believer in Christ, natural identity has been replaced. If anyone’s identity in Adam has not been replaced, he has not become a new creation, and hence is not really in Christ. This is something Messianics are going to have to come to grips with eventually, as will all believers who do not understand this, and so continue to reinterpret the faith in terms of human familial and national lineages. This is the problem of being “half saved” in thinking. And under this thinking, it raises the question of who is really born again.
So enough there, I guess. You already know all this. But it is good to be constantly reminded of what distinguishes us in Christ from the rest of mankind. Your difficulty is that you have to labor among a supposedly “believing” segment of the faith that are more deeply rooted in natural identity thinking than just about any other people.
As for Mike Bickle, I’ll only say this. He is going to have to wise up to these things and make a choice at some point. Mike is wise and understanding in some key areas, and blind in other key areas. He has grown in understanding in some areas over the past 12 years. In others he has not yet grown. In the areas he has grown, he has had to pay prices. In the areas he has not yet grown, he has prices yet to pay. But those who are charged with overseeing mass movements have a harder time seeing things clearly because they are so affected by the multitudes that they have been charged to lead. If there is one area I perceive Mike Bickle clearly struggles, it is in the area of the fear of man. That is not a put down. I just understand it for what it is. And it is very hard to overcome.
So, thanks again for writing. I hope you find this discussion reinforcing and reinvigorating of your holy faith separated from the world.
Blessings to you as you continue to ponder and weigh your calling and ministry in the light of these things.
Thanks so much, Chris. That is a brilliant and encouraging summary, seeing the same spirit in the messianic and dominionist deceptions. It helps us immensely to be reminded about the veil, the lenses, flesh vs Spirit, and that the main operational concept here is based on "incarnation" rather than "resurrection". So true. The torah people refer to the Word as the "older covenant" and "newer covenant", which says it all.
And thanks for asking the circle to pray for us as we have no others to meet/pray with in agreement about this, but the Lord is with us so that's enough.
esther with loving gratitude.
First Love Ministry
- a ministry of Anglemar Fellowship
BACK TO TOP
Page created May 24, 2017