First the Question: Does the Codex Vaticanus, used by modern versions of the Bible, such as the NIV, end at Hebrews 9:14, and exclude the the Apostle Paul's Pastoral Epistles and The Book of Revelation? Yes or No?
Take a moment to respond at the LLM Question of the Day
And now the answer to the LLM Question of 6-17-2012
Question: Is the order of God, for today, to the Jew first? Yes or No?
Answer: NO! The careful student of the Book of Acts, and the “Acts” period, will learn that during the first nine chapters of Acts, God’s order was, “to the Jews, and not to the Gentiles”, (Acts 3:29-32 and Acts 10:28 and Acts 11:19). Then from Acts 13 to Acts 28:28, God’s order was, “to the Jews first and also to the Gentiles” Acts 13:46; Acts 18:5-6; Romans 1:16, and Romans 11:11-30. Then in Ephesians and Colossians, Philippians, Titus, and 2 Timothy, written after the close of the Book of Acts, God’s order was NO LONGER “to the Jews first.” Now, out of the 735 responses we received to this question, again, 75% of you got it right! Therefore, NOW, let us take a look at in depth,
Is the Order of God Today to the Jew First?
Please FIRST read Romans 1:16; Romans 11:7-15; Acts 3:26; Acts 13:30-36; Acts 13:46; Mark 7:24-30
Today we are considering the meaning of the statement in Romans 1:16, “TO THE JEW FIRST.” Is God’s order today “TO THE JEW FIRST?”
“To the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” (Romans 1:16). In Mark 7:24-30 we learn that the Jew was more than first, and the poor Greek had a difficult time getting in at all. The twelve apostles asked the LORD Jesus to send her away without a blessing (Matthew 15:23). Then Christ said, “I am not sent but unto Israel.” (Matthew 15:24). Christ said to that Greek woman this significant thing, “let the children (the Jews) FIRST BE FILLED.” “It is not meet to take the children’s bread and cast it to dogs.” (Mark 7:27).
Let us keep in mind that Christ “came unto His own.” (John 1:11). Christ was born to be Israel’s Saviour (Acts 13:23). Christ, (the Stone) had to be rejected by Israel, the Builders, (Matthew 21:42), before the salvation of Romans 11:11 would be sent to Gentiles to provoke Israel to jealousy. One of the most important keys to the truth concerning Gentiles salvation by Grace is the truth of Acts 5:29-32; that Christ was raised up TWICE to be Israel’s Savior, first in incarnation, and second in resurrection. This same truth is stated in Acts 13:23 and Acts 13:30-36. Christ said that His own, “the children of the kingdom,” would be cast into outer darkness. (Matthew 8:12). After that He wept as He pled with them. (Luke 13:34-35).
But as we turn from this sorrowful message of Christ in Luke 13:34-35 to Matthew 23:30-39, we turn from compassionate love and indignation to awful wrath and indignation; for, in Matthew, the children of the kingdom who were to be filled FIRST, were called serpents and a generation of vipers. (Matthew 23:33). This seems to be worse than the Gentiles. The Gentiles were dogs. The Jews were “serpents” and “vipers,” far worse than dogs. They were to have something worse than the darkness of Matthew 8:12; even the damnation of hell. (Matthew 23:33).
But as we think of Mark 7:26-27 and Matthew 23:33, the “serpents” and the “dogs”, let us also think of what the Apostle Paul said, years later, “to the Jews (the serpents) first and also to the Greeks (the dogs).” (Romans 1:16).
So, you must ask with me, why should “serpents” come before “dogs”? We must conclude that on the day of Pentecost the Jews were no longer considered “serpents,” or they would not have been first. IT WAS THE PRAYER OF CHRIST on the cross that changed them back from “serpents” to “children” (Acts 3:25-26). Read what Peter said to Israel:
“Unto you FIRST God, having raised up His Son Jesus, sent Him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.” (Acts 3:26). Remember “the children FIRST be filled.” (Mark 7:27).
“Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the Word of God should FIRST have been spoken to you (Jews): but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.” (Acts 13:46).
In reading Acts 3:26 also read Acts 3:25 and note that the Jews had suddenly become “children” again. Compare the denunciation, condemnation and wrath of Matthew 23:30-39, with the tenderness and mercy of Acts 3:12-18. What changed the “serpents” back to “children”? The prayer of Christ on the cross (Luke 23:34); and the truth of Acts 3:17-18. Then Israel was again FIRST.
The Jews continued to be FIRST until something happened to them. The wrath of God fell again and God blinded Israel; after which Israel was to obtain mercy from God through the Gentiles. (Romans 11:31). The wrath of God came unto the uttermost. (1 Thessalonians 2:14-16). Then God’s order ceased to be “TO THE JEWS FIRST.” God expects His children to be wise enough to know that His order would not be “TO THE JEWS FIRST” after what God did to the Jews, according to Romans 11:7-11 and Romans 11:25.
God’s order was NOT to the Jews first in the Apostle Paul’s Prison Epistles. The careful student of the Book of Acts, and the “Acts” period, will learn that during the first nine chapters of Acts, God’s order was, “to the Jews, and not to the Gentiles”, (Acts 3:29-32 and Acts 10:28 and Acts 11:19). Then from Acts 13 to Acts 28:28, God’s order was “to the Jews first and also to the Gentiles” Acts 13:46; Acts 18:5-6; Romans 1:16, and Romans 11:11-30. Then in Ephesians and Colossians, Philippians, Titus, and 2 Timothy, written after the close of Acts, God’s order was NO LONGER “to the Jews first.”
In Ephesians 1:13 the Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul declares that men are saved and sealed by hearing and BELIEVING the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation. Therefore, here, now, is declared unto you the Word of Truth, the Gospel of your Salvation: "that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures" 1 Corinthians 15:3-4. BELIEVE today. The time is short.
So There You Have it!
Spread this message to everyone you know, far and wide.
Grace be to you and peace, from God: our Father, and The LORD Jesus Christ.
In The LORD Jesus Christ,
The Lion and Lamb Ministry
Pastor David Picos, D.D.
Minister and Ambassador for Christ in the Ministry of Reconciliation (2 Cor. 5:18-20)