28 For a person is not a Jew who is one outwardly, and true circumcision is not something visible in the flesh. 29 On the contrary, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly, and circumcision is of the heart—by the Spirit, not the letter. That man’s praise is not from men but from God.
You’re not a Christian by outward appearances–by what you say or do before others. Even making a confession of faith is not enough…a true believer is when the Holy Spirit works from the inside of a person and moves a person to respond to Christ from the heart. It is this desire to serve Him that is manifested in everything that a believer does for Him.
1 Corinthians 10:31-33
31 Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for God’s glory. 32 Give no offense to the Jews or the Greeks or the church of God, 33 just as I also try to please all people in all things, not seeking my own profit, but the profit of many, so that they may be saved.
20 Then looking up at His disciples, He said:
You who are poor are blessed,
because the kingdom of God is yours.
21 You who are now hungry are blessed,
because you will be filled.
You who now weep are blessed,
because you will laugh.
22 You are blessed when people hate you,
when they exclude you, insult you,
and slander your name as evil
because of the Son of Man.
23 “Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! Take note—your reward is great in heaven, for this is the way their ancestors used to treat the prophets.
21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to Me, ‘Lord, Lord, didn’t we prophesy in Your name, drive out demons in Your name, and do many miracles in Your name?’ 23 Then I will announce to them, ‘I never knew you! Depart from Me, you lawbreakers!’
The outward displays or declarations made by people who profess Christ does not mean that they are serving Christ. It is more about the heart of the people that live for Christ that distinguishes them as people of God.
Both Israel and today’s church are called to be holy.
And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, heirs according to the promise.
If we belong to Jesus Christ, we reflect the faith of Abraham in believing and trusting in God in all things. It is out of this seed comes today’s church, of which Christ is the head of the church. God knows the hearts of his people.
67 Then his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied:
68 Praise the Lord, the God of Israel,
because He has visited
and provided redemption for His people.
69 He has raised up a horn of salvation for us
in the house of His servant David,
70 just as He spoke by the mouth
of His holy prophets in ancient times;
71 salvation from our enemies
and from the clutches of those who hate us.
72 He has dealt mercifully with our fathers
and remembered His holy covenant—
73 the oath that He swore to our father Abraham.
He has given us the privilege,
74 since we have been rescued
from our enemies’ clutches,
to serve Him without fear
75 in holiness and righteousness
in His presence all our days.
76 And child, you will be called
a prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord
to prepare His ways,
77 to give His people knowledge of salvation
through the forgiveness of their sins.
78 Because of our God’s merciful compassion,
the Dawn from on high will visit us
79 to shine on those who live in darkness
and the shadow of death,
to guide our feet into the way of peace.
25 You are the sons of the prophets and of the covenant that God made with your ancestors, saying to Abraham, And all the families of the earth will be blessed through your offspring. 26 God raised up His Servant and sent Him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your evil ways.”
The true church is the heir of the promise that God made to Abraham, who is the father of many nations that have come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
14 The purpose was that the blessing of Abraham would come to the Gentiles by Christ Jesus, so that we could receive the promised Spirit through faith.
15 Brothers, I’m using a human illustration. No one sets aside or makes additions to even a human covenant that has been ratified. 16 Now the promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. He does not say “and to seeds,” as though referring to many, but referring to one, and to your seed, who is Christ. 17 And I say this: The law, which came 430 years later, does not revoke a covenant that was previously ratified by God and cancel the promise. 18 For if the inheritance is from the law, it is no longer from the promise; but God granted it to Abraham through the promise.
While God, according to Scripture, never extended a covenant with the church, He does show that the true church are the heirs of the promise that God made to Abraham. the true followers of Christ are the people of God–the seed of Abraham.
The law was added by God for His people to give Israel instruction and teaching and because of the transgression of the people. In today’s church, the correct teaching is that we are saved by grace, but that doesn’t cancel out the importance of the law. God says “if you love me, you will keep my commandments (John 14:15).” The law represents discipline and is necessary to distinguish those who claim to follow Christ and those who are truly serving Him from the heart.
The Law is Direction For Life
- The law is our condemnation–the gospel is our salvation
- The law condemns us–the gospel justifies us
- The law produces rebellion–the gospel produces submission
- The law brings about false pride–the gospel brings humility and thankfulness
The law provides a blueprint as to how we are to please God, and it guides us to Jesus Christ.
God is working His plan and purpose in reaching many people for His glory. The true church–the believers in Christ–are Abraham’s seed.