ALL THINGS IN CHRIST
In all wisdom and prudence making known to us the mystery of His will according to His
good pleasure which He purposed in Him the plan for the fullness of the times
TO HEAD UP THE ALL THINGS IN THE CHRIST ,
the things in the heavens and the things upon the earth, in Him ….
(Ephesians 1:8b-10)
By – Stuart H. Pouliot
Article #25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
In Paul's day or, we could say, in the early ecclesia days, one of the greatest challenges faced by
the Jews that believed on Jesus was either failing to completely come out of Judaism and
completely into Christianity, or reverting back, in whole or in part, to Judaism once having come
out of it. It boiled down to one question: Is one justified by the works of the Law or through
faith in Christ Jesus (Galatians 2:16)? Take your pick, but don't mix the two. Choose the latter!
Of course, for true Christians, the answer is through faith in Christ Jesus, for by the works of
the Law no flesh will be justified (Galatians 2:16). Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the
word of Christ (Romans 10:17), and when one hears and believes on Jesus, that one receives
the Spirit of God (Galatians 3:2).
Paul had to deal with these challenges throughout his ministry as other teachers went forth
with a message that distorted the gospel of Christ. Simply, men were teaching a gospel contrary
to the gospel preached by Paul. Those who listened to this contrary gospel were being led away
from Christ and the New Covenant, and back to Moses, Judaism, and the Old Covenant. They
were told they had to be justified by the flesh; therefore, physical circumcision had to be
continued.
This problem was particularly acute for the believers who resided in the area called Galatia. In
his anguish over these brethren, Paul did not hold back his assessment of their spiritual
condition as he labored over them until Christ was formed in them (Galatians 4:19).
(1) You foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was
publicly portrayed as crucified? (2) This is the only thing I want to find out from you: did you
receive the Spirit by the works of the Law, or by hearing with faith? (3) Are you so foolish?
Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? (Galatians 3:1-3 NASB)
To correct them, Paul drew their attention to Abraham before the Law was given to the sons of
Israel. Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness; therefore, those
who are of the faith of Abraham, the believer, are sons of Abraham, and they shall live by faith
(Galatians 3:6-14).
Interestingly, after 2,000 years of Christian history, the same dangers exist for believers, and in
fact, in our day, there are groups of Christians that are being led away from Christianity and
into Judaism, either in whole or in part. They still hold to Christ, at least in some measure, but
they are trying to join Christ with Judaism and the Old Covenant, either for themselves or for
1
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
the ones who call themselves Jews (according to the flesh) but are not true Jews (according to
the spirit). When Christians believe this way, it is called Christian Zionism .
To all who have been and are being persuaded along these lines, Paul would say: "Cast out the
bondwoman and her son, for the son of the bondwoman shall not be an heir with the son of
the free woman." This is a word for many Christians in our day; but who is hearing it?
Obviously, such a statement, as well as an understanding of Zionism , needs further elaboration,
but we need to build a foundation of understanding before doing so. In particular, we need to
understand Paul's allegory as presented in his epistle to the Galatians.
Before looking at the allegory, it is worth noting once again that Paul was dealing with the
teaching that one had to be justified by the law. However, they actually were not listening to
the law; that is, they did not understand its purpose and result, something Paul previously
pointed out in his epistle (Galatians 3:15-29).
Tell me, you who want to be under law, do you not listen to the law? (Galatians 4:21 NASB)
It is with this question in mind that Paul gave the allegory of the two women and the two sons
of Abraham.
An Allegory
( 22) For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the bondwoman [handmaid, slave
woman] and one by the free woman. (23) But the son by the bondwoman was born according
to the flesh, and the son by the free woman through the promise. (24) This is allegorically
speaking, for these women are two covenants: one proceeding from Mount Sinai bearing
children who are to be slaves; she is Hagar. (25) Now this Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia and
corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. (26) But the
Jerusalem above is free; she is our mother. (27) For it is written, ":REJOICE, BARREN WOMAN
WHO DOES NOT BEAR; BREAK FORTH AND SHOUT, YOU WHO ARE NOT IN LABOR; FOR MORE
NUMEROUS ARE THE CHILDREN OF THE DESOLATE THAN OF THE ONE WHO HAS A
HUSBAND." [Isaiah 54:1] (28) And you brethren, like Isaac, are children of promise. (29) But as
at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according
to the Spirit, so it is now also. (30) But what does the Scripture say? "CAST OUT THE
BONDWOMAN AND HER SON, FOR THE SON OF THE BONDWOMAN SHALL NOT BE AN HEIR
WITH THE SON OF THE FREE WOMAN." [Genesis 21:10] (31) So then, brethren, we are not
children of a bondwoman, but of the free woman. (Galatians 4:22-31 NASB)
An allegory is "a story in which people, things and happenings have another meaning, as in a
fable or parable; allegories are used for teaching or explaining."
In the case of Paul's allegory, it is not based on a fable but on an historical event that is fact, not
fiction. The Greeks used allegories without any historical basis, but the Hebrews generally used
allegories with an historical basis. Paul was true to his upbringing as a Hebrew.
2
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
Hagar and Ishmael and Sarah and Isaac were real characters who lived many years ago. The
present Jerusalem and Mount Sinai are real places on earth. New Jerusalem and Mount Zion
are just as real, if not more so, only they are heavenly in nature and unseen to all at this point in
time. The promises and outcomes of God are true, and the better promises will be manifested
in His appointed time.
Paul wrote that the allegory pertained to two covenants that were represented by two women,
two sons, two cities, two mounts, and two sets of promises. One covenant is old, and one
covenant is new. One covenant is earthly and based on the flesh, and one covenant is heavenly
and based on the Spirit of God. One covenant promises an inheritance of a body of land on
earth, and one covenant promises an inheritance of an immortal body out of heaven. One
covenant offers slavery, and one covenant offers freedom. One covenant comes through a
bondwoman, and one covenant comes through a free women. One covenant has passed away,
and one covenant is here to stay for the eons and beyond.
There is much to be understood in the ten verses presented in Galatians 4 that, perhaps, many
Christians do not understand, either through incorrect teaching or ignorance. Frankly, I must
confess that, for many years, I truly did not understand what Paul was telling the Galatians. I
knew that this epistle was about Jewish believers trying to be justified according to the flesh,
but the import of this allegory never hit me.
Part of the problem that I faced dealt with this one line: Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia and
corresponds to the present Jerusalem.
First, I couldn't grasp how Mount Sinai in Arabia could be likened to the present Jerusalem
sitting in the midst of the present-day state of Israel. After all, isn't the present Jerusalem the
apple of God's eye and destined to be the capital of the world in the next eon? Well, the answer
to this question is no; but let us leave this for the moment.
Second, Mount Sinai being located in Arabia was a challenge because all the biblical maps that I
saw placed Mount Sinai in the Sinai Peninsula of Egypt, not in Arabia. This may be a small point
to some, but I see it as a very important one.
Before looking at Paul's allegory, we need to know some of the history of Ishmael, that is, who
he was and what he has come to represent.
History of Ishmael
When Abram was 75 years of age, the Lord commanded him to go forth from Haran to a land
that He would show him, namely Canaan. The Lord also promised to bless Abram.
(1) Now the LORD said to Abram, "Go forth from your country, and from your relatives and
from your father's house, to the land which I will show you; (2) and I will make you a great
nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great; and so you shall be a blessing; (3) and
I will bless those who bless you, and the one who curses you I will curse. And in you all the
families of the earth will be blessed." (Genesis 12:1-3 NASB)
3
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
So, Abram, along with his beautiful wife Sarai and her brother Lot, Abram's nephew, set out for
the land of Canaan. However, upon their arrival, they discovered that there was a severe
famine in the land, so they sojourned to Egypt. Abram feared that the Egyptians would kill him
and take his wife, so he stretched the truth a bit and told the Egyptians that she was his sister.
According to the custom of the day, it was not unusual to call a close female relative a sister,
even though, technically, she was not a sibling.
According to the book of Jasher (12:44), Sarai was Abram's niece, which is why she was Lot's
sister.
While in Egypt, Pharaoh's eyes fell upon Sarai, and he wanted her for his harem. However, the
Lord was watching over Abram and Sarai, and He struck Pharaoh and his house with great
plagues. Fortunately for Pharaoh, he figured out that Sarai was Abram's wife and escorted them
out of Egypt after making Abram a wealthier man (Genesis 12:17-20). The book of Jasher fills in
some details for us.
(30) Now therefore here is thy wife, take her and go from our land lest we all die on account of
her. And Pharaoh took more cattle, men servants and maid servants, and silver and gold, to
give to Abram, and he returned unto him Sarai his wife. (31) And the king took a maiden whom
he begat by his concubines, and he gave her to Sarai for a handmaid. (32) And the king said to
his daughter, It is better for thee my daughter to be handmaid in this man's house than to be a
mistress in my house, after we have beheld the evil that befell us on account of this woman.
(Jasher 15:30-32)
Later, we learn that this handmaid was named Hagar .
Now, let us fast forward ten years. Abram had been promised many descendants, but he had
no children by Sarai, his wife. Abram deduced that, since he was childless, the heir of his house
would have to be his servant, Eliezer of Damascus.
However, the Lord corrected Abram of his natural reasoning: "This man will not be your heir;
but one who will come forth from your own body, he shall be your heir" (Genesis 15:4).
Abram believed in the Lord from then on, but he continued to rely on his natural reasoning for
a while longer or, perhaps we could say, Sarai's natural reasoning.
(1) Now Sarai, Abram's wife had borne him no children, and she had an Egyptian maid whose
name was Hagar. (2) So Sarai said to Abram, "Now behold, the LORD has prevented me from
bearing children. Please go in to my maid; perhaps I will obtain children through her." And
Abram listened to the voice of Sarai. (3) After Abram had lived ten years in the land of
Canaan, Abram's wife Sarai took Hagar the Egyptian, her maid, and gave her to her husband
Abram as his wife. (Genesis 16:1-3 NASB)
Since the handmaid was given to Sarai, Abram could not just take her; Hagar, a bondwoman,
was Sarai's possession, so only Sarai could release Hagar to Abram. When she did, Hagar
became Abram's bondwoman wife (Genesis 16:3). In those days, women could be free women
or bondwomen, free wives or bond wives. Sarai was free, and Hagar was bond. This is an
4
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
important distinction that, as we will see, is vital in order to properly understand Paul's
allegory.
After Hagar conceived, Sarai detected that she was despised by Hagar, so she complained to
Abram; but since Hagar was Sarai's possession, he told her to do what was good in her sight.
When Sarai treated Hagar harshly, Hagar fled to a spring of water in the wilderness on the way
to Shur between Kadesh and Bered. [Shur is another important aspect of the story that will be
taken up later.] An angel of the Lord met Hagar, told her to return to Sarai, and gave her a
further word.
(11) The angel of the LORD said to her further, "Behold, you are with child, and you will bear
a son; and you shall call his name Ishmael, because the LORD has given heed to your
affliction. (12) He will be a wild donkey of a man, His hand will be against everyone, and
everyone's hand will be against him; and he will live to the east of all his brothers." (Genesis
16:11-12 NASB)
Hagar returned to Abram and bore him a son when he was 86 years of age (Genesis 16:16). For
the next 13 years, Abram and Sarai undoubtedly thought that Ishmael was the son promised by
the Lord. But then the Lord appeared to Abram, confirmed His covenant with Abram, and
changed his name to Abraham.
(4) "As for Me, behold, My covenant is with you, and you will be the father of a multitude of
nations. (5) No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for
I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. (6) I will make you exceedingly fruitful,
and I will make nations of you, and kings will come forth from you." (Genesis 17:4-6 NASB)
Then the Lord gave Abraham a heavenly jolt, so to speak.
(15) Then God said to Abraham, "As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but
Sarah shall be her name. (16) I will bless her, and indeed I will give you a son by her. Then I
will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of peoples will come from her.'
(Genesis 17:15-16 NASB)
According to Abraham's natural mind, this was a physical impossibility. How could a child be
born to a man that was 100 and a wife that was 99? But God!
We might be tempted to think that Abraham turned against his firstborn son in favor of Isaac,
the son of promise, but this is not true. Ishmael was Abraham's firstborn son, and he loved him.
(18) And Abraham said to God, "Oh that Ishmael might live before You!" (19) But God said,
"No, but Sarah your wife will bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac; and I will
establish My covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him.
(20) As for Ishmael, I have heard you; behold, I will bless him, and will make him fruitful and
will multiply him exceedingly. He shall become the father of twelve princes, and I will make
him a great nation. (21) But My covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to
you at this season next year." (Genesis 17:18-21 NASB)
5
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
God not only heard Abraham's words but knew his heart of love for his son. Ishmael would be
blessed, but not in the same way as Isaac would be blessed.
So, 14 years after the birth of Ishmael, Abraham begat Isaac, his son of promise through Sarah.
Sarah was beyond childbearing years, so God had to move upon Sarah's womb in order to bring
forth Isaac. His birth was a type of the greater birth that resulted from the Holy Spirit coming
upon the virgin Mary, and the power of the Most High overshadowing her in order to conceive
Jesus, the Son of God (Luke 1:35).
As a side note, it is interesting that an interval of 14 years passed before Paul went to Jerusalem
to submit his gospel to the other apostles (Galatians 2:1). Part of his time was spent in Arabia,
which has led to much speculation over where in Arabia he went and for what purpose.
Perhaps by revelation, he was led by the Holy Spirit to Mount Sinai where he learned God's
purpose for the Law, which he explained to the Galatians. Paul also reported to the Corinthians
that 14 years prior he had been snatched away to the third heaven and to paradise (2
Corinthians 12:2-4). These observations are significant but not within the scope of this writing;
just some food for thought.
Continuing on with the story of Ishmael; there was obvious conflict between Sarah and Hagar
that spilled over to Ishmael as well. Scripture does not give much detail of this conflict, but the
book of Jasher (21:14-15) indicates that when Isaac was five years of age, Ishmael sat opposite
him with a bow in hand with the intention of killing Isaac. Sarah saw this, which led her to
demand that Hagar and her son be cast out.
(9) And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, which she had born unto Abraham,
mocking. (10) Wherefore she said unto Abraham, Cast out this bondwoman and her son: for
the son of this bondwoman shall not be heir with my son, even with Isaac. (Genesis 21:9-10
KJV)
Abraham was distressed over this conflict, for he loved his son. Again, God knew Abraham's
heart, so He encouraged him.
(12) And God said unto Abraham, Let it not be grievous in thy sight because of the lad, and
because of thy bondwoman; in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, hearken unto her voice; for
in Isaac shall thy seed be called. (13) And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a
nation, because he is thy seed. (Genesis 21:12-13 KJV)
The next day, Abraham rose and sent Hagar and Ishmael on their way. They wandered in the
wilderness of Beersheba. When their water ran out, Hagar lamented over the fate of her son.
The angel of God called to her and told her to lift up the lad. Her eyes were opened to see a
well of water, and they lived.
(20) And God was with the lad; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an
archer. (21) And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran: and his mother took him a wife out of
the land of Egypt. (Genesis 21:20-21 KJV)
6
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
Ishmael's land is Arabia
Now, it is important to understand where Ishmael lived, that is, the territory that became
associated with his name and his descendants and that was his inheritance from God. After all,
God did bless him. In what area (land) did God bless him?
So far, the record tells us that he lived east of all his brothers, that he left Abraham's tent and
traveled to the wilderness with his mother, and that he lived in the wilderness of Paran. But
there is more.
(17) These are the years of the life of Ishmael, one hundred and thirty-seven years; and he
breathed his last and died, and was gathered to his people. (18) They settled from Havilah to
Shur which is east of Egypt as one goes toward Assyria; he settled in defiance of all his
relatives. (Genesis 25:17-18 NASB)
Thus, his descendants, the Ishmaelites, settled from Havilah to Shur, which is east of Egypt as
one heads toward Assyria. Roughly speaking, this territory is present-day Saudi Arabia, an
important point needed in order to understand where Mount Sinai was located during the
exodus of the sons of Israel under the command of Moses. This was Ishmael's inheritance that
was east of his relatives.
In biblical terms, Ishmael lived on the east side of the Red Sea from the Red Sea to close to
Babylon. It is also important to note that he did not live in the Sinai Peninsula, which was part
of Egypt at the time, nor did he live in Kadesh Barnea; he lived south of Kadesh and north of
Shur, which is in the southern-most part of Arabia on the east side of the Red Sea.
Further, the Ishmaelites are also synonymous with the Midianites, as confirmed in the account
of Jacob's sons selling their brother Joseph into slavery.
(27) "Come and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites and not lay our hands on him, for he is our
brother, our own flesh." And his brothers listened to him. (28) Then some Midianite traders
passed by, so they pulled him up and lifted Joseph out of the pit, and sold him to the
Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. Thus they brought Joseph into Egypt. (Genesis 37:27-
28 NASB; also Genesis 37:36; 39:1; Judges 8:22-24)
Midian was a son of Abraham through his second free wife, Keturah (Genesis 25:1-2), which
means that the Ishmaelites and the Midianites were related to one another through Abraham.
Also, Kedar, one of Ishmael's sons, married a Midianite and lived southeast of the Dead Sea (1
Chronicles 1:29).
Finally, Scripture also tells us that Esau married one of Ishmael's daughters, and we know that
Esau or Edom lived east of the Jordan in the area called Edom, or present-day Jordan.
(8) So Esau saw that the daughters of Canaan displeased his father Isaac; (9) and Esau went to
Ishmael, and married, besides the wives that he had, Mahalath the daughter of Ishmael,
Abraham's son, the sister of Nebaioth. (Genesis 28:8-9 NASB)
7
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
It is quite apparent that a whole lot of intermarriage took place in the land east of Egypt, the
Red Sea, and the Jordan River in what is called Transjordan. Psalm 83:6 refers to the tents of
Edom and the Ishmaelites, Moab and the Hagrites . It also is abundantly clear that Ishmael and
his descendants lived in what is called Arabia, and not Canaan or Egypt. Arabia is their land.
Today, many Arabs are considered to be descendants of Ishmael. Thus, on a purely physical
level, the Ishmaelites of today are mostly Arabs.
With this short history, we now can consider the allegory, starting with verse 25: Hagar is
Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present Jerusalem. To understand what Paul
meant, let us break this sentence into three components: first, Mount Sinai in Arabia ; second,
Hagar is Mount Sinai ; and third, these correspond to the present Jerusalem .
Mount Sinai in Arabia
The first component is Mount Sinai in Arabia , which is quite interesting.
First, in Galatians 4, Paul contrasted two covenants, what are called the Old Covenant and the
New Covenant. Mount Sinai represents the Old Covenant, which is the covenant made between
God and the sons of Israel as they stood at the foot of Mount Sinai after passing through the
Red Sea.
Moses was called up on the mountain to stand before the Lord and receive the commandments
written on stone tablets. Unfortunately, the sights and sounds coming from the midst of the
mountain were too much for the Israelites, and they feared for their lives. They cried out:
"Speak to us yourself and we will listen; but let not God speak to us, or we will die" (Exodus
20:19).
It could have been their Pentecost; the time in which they would have received the Holy Spirit
and the law would have been put in their minds and written on their hearts (Jeremiah 31:33;
Ezekiel 36:26). However, instead of drawing near to the Lord, they withdrew from Him. It is for
this reason that the Ten Commandments were written on stone tablets. The commandments
were first spoken for all to hear, but the people were so frightened for their lives that they did
not listen, which revealed a rebellious pattern for the nation that would lead to their demise.
Paul called this the ministry of death , for the Old Covenant was based on letters written on
inert stones and not on living, human hearts. The letter kills, but the Spirit gives life (2
Corinthians 3).
Thus, it is important to realize that Paul's use of Mount Sinai is a reference to the Old Covenant
given to the sons of Israel through Moses.
Second, Paul identified Mount Sinai with Arabia and not with Egypt. If you haven't noticed,
some biblical maps place Mount Sinai in the Sinai Peninsula, which in Moses' time was the land
of Egypt, and not in Arabia where Ishmael dwelt.
8
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
The Sinai Peninsula is like a wedge that runs south from the Mediterranean Sea and is bordered
on the west by the Gulf of Suez, biblically called the Red Sea (Exodus 10:19), and on the east by
the Gulf of Aqaba, also biblically called the Red Sea. For example, in 1 Kings 9:26, the Red Sea is
identified with the land of Edom, which refers to the Gulf of Aqaba. The present-day nations of
Israel and Jordan are its northernmost borders, and Saudi Arabia is the entire eastern border.
Both gulfs drain into the much larger body of water also called the Red Sea. In other words, the
two gulfs are like arms of the Red Sea that extend up into Egypt, but in biblical times, both were
called the Red Sea.
This is an important distinction because a number of biblical scholars place Moses' exodus from
Egypt on the western side of the Gulf of Suez, which means that they crossed over from Egypt
into the Sinai Peninsula, which would have placed them in the wilderness of Egypt and not the
wilderness of Shur (Exodus 15:22). Such thinking places the famous mount in Egypt in the Sinai
Peninsula and not in the land of Ishmael, as clearly placed by Paul.
For many years, I have been puzzled how this could be true. As I studied maps, the proposed
location of Mount Sinai did not make much sense to me. Further, it left me in the dark as to the
meaning of Paul's reference to Mount Sinai in Arabia.
The answer to the puzzle is quite simple. Moses and the sons of Israel traveled down the
eastern side of the Gulf of Suez (Red Sea), which is on the western edge of the wilderness of
Egypt (Exodus 13:18; Judges 11:16). When they came to the southern tip of the wilderness of
Egypt, they went east toward the Gulf of Aqaba (Red Sea) (Exodus 14:1-4) and crossed over to
Arabia into the areas identified as the land of Midian and the wildernesses of Shur, Sin, Sinai,
and Paran (Exodus 15:22; 16:1; Numbers 10:12; 33:11, 15), all of which were located to the east
of Egypt and the Sinai Peninsula and to the east of the Gulf of Aqaba, and which are the
territory of Ishmael (Genesis 21:21; 25:18).
Now, the question arises: Where is Mount Sinai located?
There is an abundance of archeological evidence supporting the theory that Mount Sinai is
located in the present-day Saudi Arabia and is called Jabal al Lawz in the ancient territory of
Midian to the east of the Gulf of Aqaba. Unfortunately, archeological studies have been
stopped by the Saudis, and it is believed that they have built a nuclear missile base next to Jabal
al Lawz. Time will tell if this will play some part in the prophetic future.
At any rate, the point of all this is that there is ample, even overwhelming, evidence that Mount
Sinai is Jabal al Lawz in Saudi Arabia. Thus, Paul knew his geography and his history.
Hagar is Mount Sinai
The next component of verse 25 is Hagar is Mount Sinai .
Paul connects Mount Sinai in Arabia with Hagar because Arabia is the land of her son, Ishmael;
it is his inheritance, and, according to the allegory, in a legal sense, all associated with Mount
9
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
Sinai is his as well. He not only connects Hagar to the mount, but more explicitly states that
Hagar is Mount Sinai.
Again, allegorically speaking, everything that transpired at Mount Sinai is historically associated
with it and identified with Hagar and her son. Mount Sinai has been deeded to Hager and her
son, along with the old Jerusalem.
Again, we need to be reminded that Mount Sinai represents the Old Covenant established with
the sons of Israel through Moses. As such, Hagar represents the Old Covenant as well, which is
based on the flesh and inheriting a physical land called Canaan. Of equal significance is the fact
that it is not associated with Sarah and her son, Isaac, which represents the New Covenant,
which is based on better promises and inheriting a different kind of land, an immortal body.
Actually, the Old Covenant regarding the land of Canaan must be traced back to when Abram
(not Abraham) was promised the land. There was no child of promise given at this point; it was
simply a promise of land. As cited earlier, God told Abram: "Go forth from your country, and
from your relatives and from your father's house, to the land which I will show you." Later,
the Lord showed Abram the land he was to receive.
(14) The LORD said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him, "Now lift up your eyes and
look from the place where you are, northward and southward and eastward and westward;
(15) for all the land which you see, I will give it to you and to your descendants forever [till
the eon] ." (Genesis 13:14-15 NASB [CV])
Also, Abram (not Abraham) went into Hagar and begat Ishmael. So, in a sense, Ishmael is
associated with the Old Covenant and the inheritance of the land. After all, at this point, he was
the firstborn son of Abram, and later was second in line for the inheritance, behind Isaac, at
least as far as the physical land of Canaan was concerned.
The promise of the New Covenant, which is a better covenant of better promises, is always
associated with Sarah and Isaac, never with Hagar and Ishmael.
Corresponds to the Present Jerusalem
Finally, the third component of verse 25 is the phrase corresponds to the present Jerusalem .
Clearly, the present Jerusalem is the ancient city of Jerusalem that sat in the midst of the land
of Canaan or, in Paul's day, Judea. As we will see, it also speaks of the present-day or modern-
day Jerusalem that has been built on the ruins of the ancient city that was destroyed by God's
Roman army in 70 AD.
What did Paul mean by the phrase "corresponds to the present Jerusalem"; corresponds in
what way?
In Paul's day, the present Jerusalem represented the Jews who not only rejected Jesus as
Messiah and the King of Judah but also who demanded His crucifixion. Jerusalem continued to
10
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
be the bastion of Judaism that not only stood against Christianity but sought to destroy it. The
Jews that were not Christians continued to think of themselves as the chosen of God who had a
claim on the land of Canaan as promised to Abram. In other words, their belief system was
based on the flesh of outward signs and actions and on a piece of real estate, not on the heart
and the leading of the Spirit of God and the new real estate of immortal, celestial, spiritual
bodies.
Through their flesh, they wanted to recover the ancient city of Jerusalem with a fully functional
temple of dead stones and animal sacrifices and to establish the Kingdom of God on earth with
their flesh and become the head of the nations. They had no vision of themselves becoming
New Jerusalem, the celestial city that has the glory of God, which is the dwelling of God in spirit,
a holy temple in the Lord made up of many individual living stones (Ephesians 2:20-22; 1 Peter
2:4-5). Their whole perspective was temporal and physical, not heavenly and spiritual.
Apparent Jews
It is essential to see how Paul defined the Jews that occupied what he called the present
Jerusalem. They were what could be called apparent Jews . To Paul, these Jews represented the
very character of Jerusalem; that is, they defined the city. Take note of the two translations of
the same verse in which the words apparent and appearance are used in relation to the Jew.
(28) For not that which is apparent [outwardly] is the Jew, nor yet that which is apparent in
flesh is circumcision; (29) but that which is hidden is the Jew, and circumcision is of the heart,
in spirit, not in letter, whose applause is not of men, but of God. (Romans 2:28-29 CV)
(28) For not he who is one in appearance is a Jew, nor is that which is such in appearance in
flesh circumcision; (29) but he who is one in secret is a Jew, and that is circumcision which is
of the heart, in spirit, not in letter, whose praise is not of man but of God. (Romans 2:28-29
REB)
Essentially, Paul stated that calling oneself a Jew did not, and still does not mean that one is a
true Jew in the eyes of God. God is the one who determines who a true Jew is, not man. A Jew
according to God is not one who is one outwardly, that is, one who has the physical sign of
circumcision of the flesh. This does not make one a Jew. A true Jew is one who has a
circumcision of the heart, something only God can see. It is a spiritual circumcision that only
comes when one believes on Jesus and receives an earnest of the spirit of God within.
All who do not meet God's definition of a Jew are apparent Jews, that is, Jews in appearance
only, not of the heart.
Jesus Himself carried this thought one step further as He revealed Himself to John in the
Patmos vision.
'I know your tribulation and your poverty (but you are rich), and the blasphemy by those who
say they are Jews and are not, but are a synagogue of Satan.' (Revelation 2:9 NASB)
11
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
'Behold, I will cause those of the synagogue of Satan, who say that they are Jews and are not,
but lie―I will make them come and bow down at your feet, and make them know that I have
loved you.' (Revelation 3:9 NASB)
Undoubtedly, when He spoke these words for John to hear, Jesus had in mind the very ones
who falsely accused Him of blasphemy. The Jews that sent Him to the cross were the true
blasphemers.
(65) Then the high priest tore his robes and said, "He has blasphemed! What further need do
we have of witnesses? Behold, you have now heard the blasphemy; (66) what do you think?"
They answered, "He deserves death!" (Matthew 26:65-66 NASB)
The ones who say they are Jews are the apparent Jews, the ones who say they are Jews based
on their flesh. Jesus declares that they are not Jews but liars . These are mighty strong words,
but they are the truth because they come from the One who is the Truth.
Without any doubt, Paul understood what Jesus spoke to John many years after Paul's own
death. When he was called Saul before meeting the risen Christ on the road to Damascus, he
was, by his own admission, a blasphemer: I was formerly a blasphemer and a persecutor and a
violent aggressor (1 Timothy 1:13). He was very much like King Saul who persecuted David, a
type of King Jesus. He had been leading the pack that was trying to destroy the Way (Acts 8:1-
3). He was fighting against the Head of the body of Christ, but he came to learn that his fight
was in vain and could not be won. Instead, the risen One won Paul.
I believe that during the interval of 14 years, Paul received amazing revelation as he was in
Arabia, especially in relation to the battle that raged between the son of the flesh, Ishmael, and
the son of the promise, Isaac, or between the flesh and the spirit. Paul could look back on his
days as a blasphemer and persecutor and see himself in the shoes of Hagar's son.
But as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born
according to the Spirit, so it is now also. (Galatians 4:29 NASB)
As Paul penned these words, he must have thought of himself as a persecutor like Ishmael.
This has not changed in our day, for many apparent Jews continue to reject Christ and even
consider Christians to be dogs. Not much has changed in relation to the present Jerusalem. But
the day will come when every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is
Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:10-11).
Legal Ishmaelites
Hopefully, this understanding gives more light to Paul linking Hagar to Mount Sinai and the
present Jerusalem. Those who have rejected and continue to reject Christ and call themselves
Jews based on flesh are not only apparent Jews but also Ishmaelites in the eyes of God or, as
some call them, legal Ishmaelites. Why? In rejecting Christ and the New Covenant of better
promises, the apparent Jews chose and have chosen to remain under the Old Covenant that
12
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
was instituted at Mount Sinai. They seek the inheritance of ancient Jerusalem and the
surrounding land of Canaan given to Abram, the father of Ishmael, not Abraham, the father of
Isaac.
They are quite content with receiving a physical and earthly inheritance. As such, they have
become the legal children of Hagar and legally bound to Ishmael's inheritance, allegorically
speaking. It is as if a legal line, not a geographical one, were drawn from the old Jerusalem to
Mount Sinai in Arabia.
By their very rejection of Christ, they have bound the old Jerusalem (in contrast to New
Jerusalem) to Hagar and Mount Sinai. They, along with the present Jerusalem, have been legally
bound to the land of Ishmael and the promise to Abram before he became Abraham.
This is a legal transaction and not one based on genealogy or bloodline, or even geography.
Paul makes it very clear that those who rely on genealogy or bloodline are simply children of
the flesh, making themselves Ishmaelites, allegorically speaking.
Abram vs. Abraham
At this point, a few questions arise: What is the difference between the names of Abram and
Abraham? Why did God change Abram's name? What is the spiritual significance of the
change?
The difference between the two names is that Abraham consists of the addition of the Hebrew
letter hey , which is the fifth letter in the Hebrew alphabet. In researching the letter hey , I
discovered that several meanings are assigned to it. Depending on the source, it could mean
"divine breath, revelation and light," "God's creative power," "the breath of His mouth or the
outbreathing of Spirit," or "behold, look at that." Others make the point that, as the fifth letter
of the Hebrew alphabet, it signifies grace.
In studying the life of Abraham, it is easy to see how each of these meanings could apply to his
name with the hey in it. After all, on his way to becoming Abraham, Abram was taken outside
by the Lord and told: "Now look [behold, look at that] toward the heavens, and count the
stars, if you are able to count them" (Genesis 15:5). After telling the Galatians to cast out the
bondwoman, Paul exhorted that all who are seeking to be justified by law have fallen from
grace (Galatians 5:4). In other words, they do not have the faith of Abraham, a faith according
to grace.
For this reason it is by faith, in order that it may be in accordance with grace, so that the
promise will be guaranteed to all the descendants, not only to those who are of the Law, but
also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all…. (Romans 4:16
NASB)
In regard to the meaning of "divine breath" or "outbreathing of Spirit," the addition of the
Hebrew letter hey signifies an increased measure of the Spirit of God at work in Abraham's life
13
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
and through his sons. Abram could be likened to the age of Pentecost, and Abraham could be
likened to the coming age of Tabernacles.
We cannot say that the Holy Spirit only began to be active by coming upon the 120 waiting in
the upper room. The Spirit of God was engaged in the restoration of the earth that was in ruin
6,000 years ago (Genesis 1:2), and the same Spirit was engaged in the life of Abram and his son
Ishmael, but this engagement increased in the life of Abraham and his son Isaac.
Abram represents an earnest of the spirit (2 Corinthians 1:22; 5:5; Ephesians 1:13), and
Abraham represents the fullness of God [the spirit] (Ephesians 3:19).
After all, Abram went out looking for a land promised by God and found it, but Abraham was
looking for the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God, for He has
prepared a city for them (Hebrews 11:10, 16), the city of the living God, the celestial Jerusalem
(Hebrews 12:22). Abraham waits for this city, along with all who are born from above; all whose
mother is above.
The same measure of increase is seen in the ages of Pentecost and Tabernacles. An earnest of
the spirit defines the age of Pentecost that all of us have grown up in. It is an age based on the
feast of Pentecost that was celebrated with leavened bread (Leviticus 23:17), which refers to
corruption. In other words, it was never intended to lead all into perfection and was destined to
fail, for Scripture has shut up everyone under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ
might be given to those who believe (Galatians 3:22; also Romans 11:32).
Perfection can come only when the fullness of God or, more explicitly, the fullness of the spirit
comes in the age of Tabernacles, which is inaugurated with the manifestation of the sons of
God, the sons of glory (Romans 8:23; Hebrews 2:10).
Further, the age of Pentecost could be likened to the reign of Saul, and the age of Tabernacles
will be likened to the reign of David. It's all a matter of increasing degrees of the spirit and life
of our Lord, until the whole earth is full of His glory.
We who believe are not of Abram but of Abraham. All who are destined to be manifested as a
son of God in the next eon are destined to have the full breath of the Spirit of God. However,
we must be sure that we have cast out all vestiges of the bondwoman from our lives and have
embraced Sarah as our mother and New Jerusalem as our celestial city, the dwelling of God in
Spirit.
Cast out the bondwoman
(30) But what does the Scripture say? "CAST OUT THE BONDWOMAN AND HER SON, FOR THE
SON OF THE BONDWOMAN SHALL NOT BE AN HEIR WITH THE SON OF THE FREE WOMAN."
[Genesis 21:10] (31) So then, brethren, we are not children of a bondwoman, but of the free
woman. (Galatians 4:30-31 NASB)
14
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
Without any doubt, Paul had great clarity on the matter of the bondwoman and the free
woman, something that is greatly lacking among many teachers and preachers in our day,
especially those who espouse Christian Zionism.
Paul quoted the words of Sarah as she spoke to her husband Abraham. She was mocked by
Hagar and wanted her out of her house for good. This distressed Abraham, but God told him to
listen to his wife. In other words, God told Abraham to cast out the bondwoman Hagar and her
son Ishmael, and so he did.
In writing his epistle to the Hebrews who were also in danger of not casting out the
bondwoman, Paul reminded them that the old covenant was about to disappear, that is,
Judaism―centered on the present Jerusalem, the temple, the Levitical priesthood, and the
many sacrifices―was soon to become obsolete.
When He said, "A new covenant," He has made the first obsolete. But whatever is becoming
obsolete and growing old is ready to disappear. (Hebrews 8:13 NASB)
According to God's principle that is repeated throughout Scripture, the first order must be
taken away in order to establish the second order.
Then He said, "BEHOLD, I HAVE COME TO DO YOUR WILL." He takes away the first in order to
establish the second. (10) By this will we have been sanctified through the offering of the
body of Jesus Christ once for all. (Hebrews 10:9-10 NASB)
The first or Old Covenant was taken away so that the second or New Covenant, the better
covenant of better promises (Hebrews 8:6), could be established. All vestiges of the first order
passed away and were made obsolete when God sent His Roman army to destroy Jerusalem
and Judaism in 70 AD. In the eyes of God, the Old Covenant is no more and must not be
embraced in any shape, form, or manner. This is the meaning of cast out the bondwoman and
her son.
All who do so are free and are living according to the spirit that gives life. All who do not are in
bondage to the old covenant according to the letter that kills; they are legal Ishmaelites, legally
bound by God's divine court to Hagar and Mount Sinai in Arabia.
Christian Zionism
Has this changed in our day? Hardly! Today, there are whole groups of Christians that embrace
both covenants in a strange hybrid that holds not only to Christ and Christianity but also to
Moses and Judaism. As mentioned earlier, it is called Christian Zionism .
Undoubtedly, there are permutations of Christian Zionism, but I will not attempt to define them
but will simply stick to what I once believed but have since cast aside. I have cast out the
bondwoman and her son, and pray that you will too.
15
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
Christian Zionism is based on the theory (theology?) of dualism that states God is working on
two different and non-convergent lines. One line is the Gentile believers and the church, and
the other line is the Jew and the state of Israel. One line is according to the spirit, and the other
is according to the flesh. One line is heavenly (you know, golden streets, pearly gates, mansions
in the sky, and all), and one is earthly, associated with a dusty piece of real estate in the Middle
East. As I have written elsewhere the proper way to view what God is doing is called graftage .
Christian Zionism leaves Judaism fully intact, only some add Christ to it and others keep Him out
of it altogether. Some believe the apparent Jews, ones according to the flesh, will come to
accept Christ and then reinstitute all the traditions of ancient Judaism, down to the Levitical
priesthood and the animal sacrifices. They believe the Kingdom of God will come through these
Jews. They acknowledge that there is only one way to the Father and that it is through His Son.
Consequently, they also believe that Christ Himself will sit on a throne in the ancient city of
Jerusalem and rule over the nations through these Jews. This is a hybrid theology that mixes the
two covenants and the two women.
Others believe that the apparent Jews will reinstitute ancient Judaism without Christ because
they are the chosen people of God, the ones chosen to lead the nations and usher in the
kingdom of God on earth, simply on the basis of their bloodline or genealogy that is traced back
to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. They do not need Christ; He is not their way. This is called
Judiastic Zionism .
In either case, both groups expect the temple to be rebuilt, the Levites to be ministering once
again in the temple, and the red heifer to be made available for sacrifice.
Not to confuse the matter, but there are Christians who also believe that they must embrace
Judaism as well; after all, Jesus is coming back for a Jewish bride, as their thinking goes. So,
instead of casting off the bondwoman, they not only embrace her but also attempt to graft
Jesus Christ into her.
I trust that you see the danger in such thinking. But we must be clear that there are many
subtleties to Christian and Judiastic Zionism from which we must guard ourselves. It all must be
cast off.
Now, who is to say a temple will not be rebuilt? It could happen; but we need to realize that
this does not mean that God is in it as if He sanctions a return to the old covenant and Judaism
that He has made obsolete through the sacrifice of His Son, and sanctions a city that He has
destroyed more than once due to its rebellious inhabitants. However, if this does happen, it
does not mean that Christian Zionism is right and the rest of us are wrong. No! It simply means
that God has allowed such a thing to come about so that the final destruction of Jerusalem will
come in accord with Scripture (Isaiah 29:2-6; Jeremiah 19:11; Matthew 21:43; 23:37-39).
If we love the Jews residing in Jerusalem today, we would tell them that God loves them and
they need to believe on Jesus, the true Messiah and King of Judah, and the One who
legitimately holds the birthright name of Israel , and then encourage them to get out of town
16
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
before it is too late. Isaiah 29:6 sure does sound like a nuclear explosion― the flame of a
consuming fire .
Instead, many Christians are encouraging apparent Jews to return to Israel, even to the point of
paying their way to get there. How about sending them airfare out of Jerusalem?
We need to heed Paul's exhortation to cast out the bondwoman. The question each of us must
ask is this: Is our mother Hagar, or is she Sarah? Are we in bondage, or are we in freedom? Are
we children in slavery, or are we children of promise? Is our destiny based on the flesh, or is our
destiny based on the spirit?
Finally, which Jerusalem is ours?
Present Jerusalem vs. New Jerusalem
It is safe to state that most Christian eschatology of our day centers on the present Jerusalem,
both the old and modern-day Jerusalem, and very little centers on New Jerusalem that in God's
Day will begin to fill the whole earth.
It is as if many Christians are saying that the age to come on this earth will be ruled by apparent
Jews from the ancient Jerusalem that has been rebuilt in the modern-day state of Israel.
However, God has promised that it will be destroyed, never to be repaired again. Surely, if a
nuclear bomb goes off in Jerusalem, it will make it uninhabitable for quite some time, perhaps
the entire 1,000-year Kingdom Age, due to radiation.
We should be reminded of the Hebrews epistle, which is about the inhabited earth to come
(Hebrews 2:5 CV). Paul exhorted the Hebrew believers who were in danger of going back to
Judaism: How will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation ? (Hebrews 2:3). Paul exhorts us
today to hold fast our confidence and the boast of our hope firm until the end, to be diligent to
enter our rest, to hold fast our confidence, to draw near with confidence to the throne of grace,
to press on to maturity, to draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith (Hebrews
3:6; 4:11, 14, 16; 6:1; 10:22), to name a few exhortations.
How can we do this if we have not cast off the bondwoman?
The good news is that we can press on toward the goal, for we have come to Mount Zion and
to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem (Hebrews 12:22 NASB).
(13) Let us go outside the camp, bearing His reproach. (14) For here we do not have a lasting
city, but we are seeking the city which is to come. (Hebrews 13:13-14 NASB)
Jerusalem above is free; she is our mother. (Galatians 4:26 NASB)
Let us join ranks with the ones who were strangers and exiles on earth that followed in the
footsteps of Abraham.
17
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
(13) All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having
welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on
the earth. (14) For those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a country of
their own. (15) And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went
out, they would have had opportunity to return. (16) But as it is, they desire a better country,
that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has
prepared a city for them. (Hebrews 11:13-16 NASB)
What is the city? It is New Jerusalem!
You will not find her in the bricks and mortar of the cities of the world. You will not find her
located on one piece of stagnant, dusty real estate on earth. She is only to be found in spirit and
in a people that God has chosen to be the wife of the Lambkin. She is a spiritual and celestial
city of people who are filled with the glory of God.
(1) And I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth passed
away, and the sea no longer is. (2) And I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming
down out of Heaven from God, having been prepared as a bride, having been adorned for her
Husband. (Revelation 21:1-2 LITV)
(10) And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the
holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, (11) having the glory of God. Her
brilliance was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper. (Revelation 21:10-11
NASB)
Blessed is he who comes in the Name of the Lord
Before concluding, there is one more point to make.
As Jesus walked out of the temple and left the house of Judah and Jerusalem desolate, He
spoke of the blessed coming in the name of the Lord.
(33) 'serpents! brood of vipers! how may ye escape from the judgment of the gehenna? (34)
'Because of this, lo, I send to you prophets, and wise men, and scribes, and of them ye will kill
and crucify, and of them ye will scourge in your synagogues, and will pursue from city to city;
(37) 'Jerusalem, Jerusalem, that art killing the prophets, and stoning those sent unto thee,
how often did I will to gather thy children together, as a hen doth gather her own chickens
under the wings, and ye did not will. (38) Lo, left desolate to you is your house; (39) for I say
to you, ye may not see [ eido ] me henceforth, till ye may say, Blessed [ eulogeo ] is he who is
coming in the name of the Lord.' (Matthew 23:37-39 YLT)
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the LORD; we have blessed you from the house
of the LORD. (Psalm 118:26 NASB)
The question is: Who is the blessed one? Is it Christ or is it the Jew who rejects Christ?
18
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
Some translations of Matthew 23:39 capitalize He to imply that it refers to the Lord Jesus, but
this is interpretative bias and, frankly, makes no sense according to the context of the passage
nor to the structure of the sentence.
Perhaps there is a third interpretation of the blessed one, and that is, they are the Lord's
conquerors, the true sons of God, the sons of the first resurrection and transfiguration. To
explain this interpretation, we need to look at the words see and bless in the above verses.
The word see comes from the Greek word eido , which primarily means "to see" but by
implication means "to know." In fact, eido is often translated know . Consider the following
examples, taking special note that they refer to knowing a person or something about a person.
"But so that you may know [ eido ] that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive
sins"―then He said to the paralytic, "Get up, pick up your bed and go home." (Matthew 9:6
NASB)
"But he answered, 'Truly I say to you, I do not know [ eido ] you.'" (Matthew 25:12 NASB)
"Let us alone! What business do we have with each other, Jesus of Nazareth? Have You come
to destroy us? I know [ eido ] who You are―the Holy One of God!" (Luke 4:34 NASB)
"I did not recognize [ eido ] Him…." (John 1:31 NASB)
So they were saying to Him, "Where is Your Father?" Jesus answered, "You know [ eido ]
neither Me nor My Father; if you knew [ eido ] Me, you would know [ eido ] My Father also."
(John 8:19 NASB)
His parents answered them and said, "We know [ eido ] that this is our son, and that he was
born blind…." (John 9:20 NASB)
"When he puts forth all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because
they know [ eido ] his voice." (John 10:4 NASB)
But when the day was now breaking, Jesus stood on the beach; yet the disciples did not know
[ eido ] that it was Jesus. … Jesus said to them, "Come and have breakfast." None of the
disciples ventured to question Him, "Who are You?" knowing [ eido ] that it was the Lord.
(John 21:4, 12 NASB)
Given these examples, verse 39 could have been translated as you may not know [ eido ] me
henceforth, until you say . The Jews that had rejected Him saw Him, but they did not know Him
as the Messiah and God's King. The issue on the Lord's heart was them coming to know Him,
not just seeing Him.
The Concordant Version translates eido as perceive , which means "to take hold of,
comprehend, grasp mentally": "You by no means be perceiving Me henceforth." This could be
19
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
rephrased as: "You will not comprehend or grasp who I am." This particular translation seems
to capture the essence of the Lord's meaning.
Next, the word bless comes from the Greek word eulogeo , which means "to speak well of,
praise." Matthew 23:39 could be paraphrased: "Speak well of and praise the one who comes
in the name of the Lord."
It is apparent by the context of Matthew 23:33-39 that Jesus was speaking to the house of
Judah that was rejecting Him and would demand that He be crucified, just as they had slain the
prophets sent by God to warn them, but they would not listen and repent. Due to their
rebellion and apostasy, Jesus walked out of their house and the Kingdom was given to the
nation that would bear the fruit of the Kingdom (Matthew 21:43), the true Judah nation, for it
accepts Jesus as their King and Messiah.
That generation was condemned to the judgment of gehenna (death and destruction, not
torture in a place called hell ), which, again, pointed to 70 AD when God sent His Roman army to
destroy the city of Jerusalem (Matthew 22:7), along with its temple, and to bring an end to the
Old Covenant and all that was associated with Judaism, at least in the eyes of God. It is true that
the ones claiming to be Jews continued on with their tradition(s), but the Lord was no longer in
Judaism and was never in their traditions; all became obsolete (Hebrews 8:13) and were
replaced by the New Covenant based on the sacrificial blood of the Son of God.
Now, this leads to the main point, and that is the identity of the ones who will come in the
name of the Lord. Who are they? When will they come?
They are the immortal conquerors of the body of Christ that will rise in the first resurrection
(those asleep in Jesus), along with those who will be transfigured (those who are alive and
remain), at the coming of the Lord. This is the company of the true Judahites, the ones counted
worthy of being the true Israel, sons placed in the Kingdom. In other words, they are the ones
that have the birthright of Israel. Thus, they are the true Judah and the true Israel , for they
have possession of the scepter of Judah (Genesis 49:10), meaning they have the right to reign,
and possession of the birthright of Israel , meaning they have the inheritance of sonship, just as
the sons of Joseph, the son of Israel, possessed the birthright (Genesis 48; 1 Chronicles 5:1-2).
Since the generation of Jews that rejected Christ 2,000 years ago is dead and will not rise until
the second resurrection to appear before the Great White Throne (Matthew 12:32), we must
assume that this applies to the generation on earth when the true sons of God are manifested
as the Kingdom of Christ takes root among the nations in the oncoming eon. The Jews who say
they are Jews and are not, but lie (Revelation 2:9; 3:9), for they continue to reject Jesus as
Messiah, will come to know who Jesus is when they see the sons of God and realize that they
have lived in unbelief and rebellion.
I do not believe that, at this point, those who have lived this lie will see the Lord face to face.
They will see the face of Christ in the face of the ones in His image, and, when they do see Him
in them, they will proclaim: Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord . They will
see joy and love in these ones, their eyes will be opened, and they will be led by the sons of
20
#25
Cast Out the Slave Woman [Present Jerusalem]
February 2012
God to learn of God's righteousness, much as another self-righteous Pharisee whose heart was
turned to the Lord had to learn. It was Paul who learned that righteousness comes through
faith in Christ (Philippians 3:9).
In conclusion, to those who claim to be a Jew and do not know Jesus as the Messiah and the
only Way to the righteousness of God, you have been living a lie because God does not consider
you a true Jew. You need a circumcised heart (Jeremiah 4:4), and this comes from believing on
Jesus, the Son of God. God loves you! Believe!
To the apparent Jews (ones claiming to be chosen of God because of their genealogy) and
Christians (the true Jews based on faith), it is time to cast off the bondwoman, embrace the
free woman, and seek for the city sought by Abraham, the holy city of God, New Jerusalem!
21