Israel was God’s chosen people. Meaning, he had an intentionally documented a relationship with Israel. He had established ways for the people to deal with uncleanness and sin, and to renew relationships. But over and over again Israel failed to live up to their side of the deal. God is long suffering, but eventually decided to bring Gentiles along. Through the letter Paul is wrestling with this as he writes to a diverse Church with Jews and Gentiles congregants. Through Paul and Peter, Jesus worked in the Gentile and Jewish converts of “The Way”. They became followers of Jesus. Yet, Israel stumbled over Jesus. Their framework of God didn’t include Jesus. There was no shelf space for Jesus.
If that could happen to Israel then it could happen to us. We could see our systems and doctrines and culture, but forget to see God. We could have pride in our denomination but stumble over Jesus. We can fall into the same trap. We should be humble and trust God.
9 You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in.” 20 Granted. But they were broken off because of unbelief, and you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but tremble. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either. Romans 11
My son will say things like, “I am super good at soccer”. And he is good, but his confidence withers when someone dribbles past him and scores. Our confidence can lie on a weak foundation. Jesus is the solid rock. No amount of money, power, sex, technology or happy thoughts can satisfy like Jesus. For when we lack what we want we are unsatisfied and after we achieve what we want we are unsatisfied. Only Jesus brings true lasting Joy.
Seek God, love Him; seek others, love them.