Enmity Abolished

Jesus is a Peacemaker – Literally. He took Jew and Gentile into Himself when He hung upon the cross and made One New Man from the two.

There is a war that has raged in the earth since the fall of mankind between Law and Grace. The two trees in the Garden typified these two life principles.

The tree of the knowledge of good and evil typifies the Law that if a man lives by the Law he shall die under it’s penalty. Eating from that tree will either make you boastful or condemned. That is the best the Law can do for the one trying to keep it.

The tree of Life was also in the garden and it typifies the grace of God freely given and freely received by faith. By daily believing in Jesus as our sacrifice that made us righteous and holy we enter into Life.

Down through the Ages those who are born of the flesh have persecuted those who are born of the Spirit. This enmity between flesh and Spirit are the two extremes of Law and Grace.

One cannot live by both. It is one or the other.

If you choose to live by keeping Gods old testament commandments you will die. But if you acknowledge you have failed to keep His righteous requirements and instead trust in Yeshau Jesus to be your righteousness you shall live.

When Paul wrote to the Ephesians in chapter 2 he told them of Jesus the Peacemaker.He described the two opposing sides that were at enmity with one another. He had already shown in Eph 2:1-6 that we were ALL at enmity(Jew and Gentile) with God before believing in Jesus Messiah, now he writes about the enmity that has been between Jew and Gentile.

Eph 2:13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
Eph 2:14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation,
Eph 2:15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one new man from the two, thus making peace,
Eph 2:16 and that He might reconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, therebyputting to death the enmity.
Eph 2:17 And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near.
Eph 2:18 For through Him we both have access by one Spirit to the Father.

There has been a tendency for each side to be proud and unloving towards the other side because of the thing they trust in. Let me explain.

Jews are proud of their heritage and especially the Law given to Moses at Sinai. Paul says that the Jews were “near” to God and the Gentiles were “afar off”. We were “aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise.” We were afar off. But the Jews who were “near” to God were also afar off in their hearts even as Jesus pointed out by quoting Isaiah 29:13 to them.

Mat 15:6 then he need not honor his father or mother.’ Thus you have made the commandment of God of no effect by your tradition.
Mat 15:7 Hypocrites! Well did Isaiah prophesy about you, saying:
Mat 15:8 ‘THESE PEOPLE DRAW NEAR TO ME WITH THEIR MOUTH, AND HONOR ME WITH THEIR LIPS, BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR FROM ME.
Mat 15:9 AND IN VAIN THEY WORSHIP ME, TEACHING AS DOCTRINES THE COMMANDMENTS OF MEN.’ “

For all their Law keeping they were still far off in their hearts, the place that matters the most, for it is out of the heart that all life issues forth. Jesus emphasised the need for a new heart not stricter obedience to the Law.

The enmity between Jew and Gentile in first century Judea was palpable. Jews were taught from youth by Rabbis(still are taught) that Gentiles were worse than dogs and subhuman. They were taught that the Jew is the only truly human entity on the planet and that Gentiles must be subjugated and made to serve the Jew. Gentiles once they came into contact with this hate filled view pretty quickly began to hate the Jews. And so down through history this enmity has not dissipated at all for the Zionists still maintain such superiority in their beliefs.

God’s solution to this division was to make a totally New Man who is pleasing in His sight. Jews think that they shall enter into the Kingdom of Messiah by their Jewishness but it is not the case at all. Only the New Man created in Christ Jesus enters into the Kingdom.

Eph 2:17 And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near.

He sent Jesus to the Jews who were proud and hardened in their strict observance of the Law, and He preached repentance to them. Everywhere you look Jesus was preaching God’s grace and love and truth and mercy to all men. The result was that some who were trusting in Law were ashamed and repented while others hardened their hearts even more and wanted Him killed. Also those who were not Jewish(Gentiles) or who were Jewish sinners heard this good news and rejoiced.

The pride of the Law keeper was exposed by Jesus everywhere he went. Few realised that God was looking for love, not obedience to Laws.

The prejudice in the heart of the Jews rested upon the fact that God had given them the Law. Jesus took that very Law into Himself and abolished the Law of commandments when He died on the Cross. Now the only way to come to God is through His grace by faith in Jesus Christ. There is no boasting in that.

Admitting our need of the Saviour is the most humbling of things to do. But there is NO OTHER WAY for any man to come to God other than through faith in Jesus Christ of Nazareth.

Jews and Gentiles –ALL MEN–are loved equally by the Father. Jesus is our peace offering. We died in Him.

We died to being a Gentile. We died to being a Jew.

Once a person receives the Messiah Jesus by repentance and faith, he or she ceases to be any thing else but a NEW CREATION.

This is the new thing God has done. One new man standing in complete acceptance before the Father. A man of Peace with God. Only in Jesus is that found.

Enmity within is also abolished

Not only has Jesus abolished the enmity between Jew and Gentile and between man and God but He Himself is the PEACE within.

We as individuals will never know peace within ourselves until we see that Jesus Himself is our peace. Not Jesus up in heaven somewhere, but Jesus living in us and living as us. Man is not only at enmity with God but also within himself. Man fights against himself from birth trying to better himself for he thinks that he is deficient in some way.

Because man thinks of himself as deficient he tries hard to better himself. That is the basis of all religions. BUT true Christianity is not about bettering ourselves!!  Trying to become a better you will only create boasting or condemnation, it is the law, even self imposed law.

Jesus Himself is the BETTER YOU that you seek, and He has come to live as you in your spirit if you are a believer. Enmity or hostility against yourself to push yourself to be better can cease when you accept Jesus as your new self.

That is why Paul preached Christ in you and why he laboured that Christ be formed in you.

Col 1:27 To them God willed to make known what are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles: which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.
Col 1:28 Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.
Col 1:29 To this end I also labor, striving according to His working which works in me mightily.

Gal 4:19 My little children, for whom I labor in birth again until Christ is formed in you,

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