House Church Talk - Baptisms and Administrations

Bruce Woodford bwood4d at
Fri Feb 13 21:49:41 EST 2004

Hi Ross,

When I wrote:" God never had a "purely Jewish mission"!! ...

You responded:"As you noted with Christ going only to the lost sheep of 
Israel and commanding His disciples to do likewise, there was indeed a 
purely Jewish mission for awhile. You see, before the Gentiles could be 
blessed through Israel according to the New Covenant, Israel had to get 
right with God and thus John the baptizer's mission. Israel first, then the 
rest of the world."

Dear brother, Israel has never gotten right with God, and yet great blessing 
has come to the Gentiles! Great blesing came to Seth, Noah,  Abraham 
etc.(Gentiles before Israel ever existed!)  Great blessing came to Job 
totally apart from Israel.  Great blessing came to Gentiles during the 
ministry of the Lord Jesus even while most of Israel flatly rejected Him!
As far as new covenant blessing is concerned, the new covenant had not even 
been made when the Lord and His disciples were going just to the lost sheep 
of the house of Israel. Under the new covenant, far more gentiles have come 
into blessings than have Israelites!

I had written:"The Ethiopian eunuch, the household of Cornelius, and many 
other Gentiles were already members in the Body of Christ. Some of them even 
before Paul, Himself!!! "
You responded: "These were saved and certainly part of the household of God, 
but they were not members of the "Body" until it was created. One can not be 
a member of something that does not yet exist! The Eunuch was not an ethnic 
Jew but he was a religious Jew. Cornelius' status as a "God-fearer" implies 
a special sympathy for the Jewish religion if not the intent to become a 
proselyte at some point."

Brother Ross, If you agree that these were saved and part of the household 
of God, why would you say that they were not members of the body of Christ?  
The body of Christ is first mentioned in Romans 12:5 (A.D. 60) but the 
household of God is only mentioned in Ephesians (A.D. 68)!   If the place 
where something is first mentioned in scripture indicates when it was 
"created", then the household of God did not exist until A.D. 68!!  Do you 
see how such thinking is faulty?

While Paul was the first one to whom it was revealed that the nature of the 
unity of the Spirit was that of a BODY, he was certainly not the first to 
whom it was revealed that there would be  A UNITY OF BOTH JEWS AND GENTILES! 
    To Jacob, as far back as Gen.49:10, it was revealed that there would be 
a gathering (singular) of the peoples (plural) unto a man of the tribe of 
Judah designated "Shiloh" or "peacemaker". " The sceptre shall not depart 
from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and 
unto him shall the gathering of the people be."

Isaiah speaks of the same in Isaiah 49:6."And he said, It is a light thing 
that thou shouldest be my
servant to raise up the tribes of Jacob, and to restore the preserved of 
Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest 
be my salvation unto the end of the earth."

Caiaphas, the High priest of Israel prophesied of the same thing in John 
11:50-52 so it was yet future at that time."Nor consider that it is 
expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole 
nation perish not. And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest 
that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation;  And not for 
that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the 
children of God that were scattered abroad."

This oneness was yet future when the Lord Jesus was here. He spoke of it in 
John 10:16 and 17:11,21,22,23. (A.D.37)
"And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, 
and they shall hear my
voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd."
"And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come 
to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given 
me, that they may be one, as we are....that they all may be one; as thou, 
Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the 
world may believe that thou hast sent me. And the glory which thou gavest me 
I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:  I in them, and 
thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may 
know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me."

But in Acts 15:7-11, Peter spoke of this unity as an already accomplished 
fact and James concurred with him in Acts 15:13-17. (A.D. 55)
"And when there had been much disputing, Peter rose up, and said unto them, 
Men and brethren, ye know how that a good while ago God made choice among 
us, that the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel, and 
believe. And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them 
the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; And put no difference between us and 
them, purifying their hearts by faith.  Now therefore why tempt ye God, to 
put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, which neither our fathers nor we 
were able to bear?  But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus 
Christ we shall be saved, even as they."

"And after they had held their peace, James answered, saying, Men and 
brethren, hearken unto me:
Simeon hath declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take 
out of them a people for his name.  And to this agree the words of the 
prophets; as it is written,  After this I will return, and will build again 
the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the 
ruins thereof, and I will set it up:  That the residue of men might seek 
after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, upon whom my name is called, saith the 
Lord, who doeth all these things."

Ross, can you tell us when you think the Body of Christ was "created"?  How 
did those who were
already believers get into this Body?  All who are members in it are 
baptized into it by the Spirit. When did/does this happen?


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