Bulletin for 1-16-22

Birthdays and Anniversaries:

1-21 Al Sissom, Jefferson Mendoza

Prayer requests:

Kennedi Reames, her doctor has determined that a nodule on her thyroid is cancerous. Surgery Feb 9.

Paula Taylor is positive for Covid.

Dominic Esner has covid and strep.

Diane Esner, Joe’s mom, positive for Covid, she has several co-morbidities.

Chris Girvin and Lowell Taylor are recovering from surgeries.

Marilyn Jones maintenance chemo has been a little tough but doing well with physical rehab.

Darlyne Stewart, Karl’s sister, small cancer spots on liver, therapy ongoing.

Shirley Weeks, Steve’s mom, is not well.

Sharon Best, Steven’s mom, small setback. Had an ulcer and needed blood, but doing ok.

Sarah, Chris Girvin’s sister, on hospice care

Eleuterio & Lidia Oviedo have not been well.

Steve Weeks, sleep apnea, got the mouthpiece, struggling with it.

Sharon Gerstman, regular member of our radio group, hip surgery in Jan.

Gary Nelson, has not been feeling well.

Robert and Sue Waller, Robert has a severe toe infection, Sue is very ill.

David Shaffer, being treated for leukemia, bone marrow transplant.

Darla Nitti, Wendi’s mom, stage 4 kidney disease, not well. Wendi has gone to be with her.

Leta, has a recurring cancer, prayer request from her granddaughter via our website.

If you have more prayer requests, just message or text Steve and we will update!


True Israel

“For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel” (Romans 9:6b NASB).

The proper noun Israel is used in the Bible to designate the patriarch previously known as Jacob (Genesis 32:28), the nation founded through him and his twelve sons (Romans 11:1-2), and the northern kingdom of ten tribes which was established after the death of Solomon (1 Kings 12:16).

New Testament writers added a fourth application of the name to include all those (including Gentiles) who are descendants of Abraham through faith, especially faith in Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God. In the text cited at the beginning of this article Paul is making this argument from the negative perception. Descendants of Abraham became the people of God known as Israel. But not all the descendants of Abraham received that designation. Neither Ishmael nor the children of Keturah (Genesis 25:1-11) were official heirs of their father, but only Isaac. And Isaac’s elder son, Esau, forsook his birth-right and did not share in the spiritual blessings reserved for Jacob (Israel).

The implication of Paul’s argument is that if not every physical descendant of Abraham was included in the special relationship of Israel, then it is possible that some who were not physical descendants could be so included. And indeed, they were. “That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of promise are regarded as descendants” (Romans 9:8).

Earlier in Romans he stated,

“For he is not a Jew (i.e. an Israelite) who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh. But he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that which is of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter; and his praise is not from men, but from God” (Romans 2:28-29).

True Israel, to Paul, is that assembly of people who are in fellowship with God. They are no longer bound by obsolete covenants (such as the Law of Moses, Hebrews 8:7-13), but only by faith (obedient trust) in Jesus. So, “Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, attained righteousness, even the righteousness which is by faith; but Israel, pursuing a law of righteousness, did not arrive at that law” (Romans 9:30-31).

This understanding of course showed that God’s gift of salvation is to all mankind (Romans 10:13) and paved the way towards unity among all humanity (Ephesians 2:19).

“For he himself is our peace, who made both group into one and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall, by abolishing in his flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances, so that in himself he might make the two into one new man, thus establishing peace” (Ephesians 2:14-15).

Israel is not an antiquated phrase, nor one restricted to a physical nation. Those who follow the Bible can find identity, promise, and hope within the concept of a chosen people of God, identified not by genealogy or physical characteristics, but simply by trust in God and his Son. They are the true spiritual Israel, the children of promise, to whom all blessings are given.

Michael Brooks, link to original article