God’s Grace to the Nations
Today’s reading: Deuteronomy 1-2; Mark 11:1-19
Turn northward 4 and command the people, “You are about to pass through the territory of your brothers, the people of Esau, who live in Seir; and they will be afraid of you. So be very careful. 5 Do not contend with them, for I will not give you any of their land, no, not so much as for the sole of the foot to tread on, because I have given Mount Seir to Esau as a possession. Deuteronomy 2:3b-5
17 And he was teaching them and saying to them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? But you have made it a den of robbers.” Mark 11:17
Woven throughout the Old Testament are indications that God has other nations in view as He brings salvation to the world through Israel. It is interesting to discover that God provided and protected lands for the descendents of Esau, who was not the chosen son of Isaac. The Lord also provided lands for the descendents of Lot, the Ammonites and the Moabites. He even restricted those lands from Israelite takeover.
Jesus clearly understood and taught this global perspective as indicated in today’s selection from Mark above. The temple was to be a house of prayer for all the nations. In Jesus’ day, Judaism had degenerated into a very inward focused religion, but Jesus was making disciples who were going to go to the Gentiles with His gospel.
Unless you can trace your ancestry back to Jews, you are, like me, a Gentile. You are, like me, a beneficiary of God’s grace to Israel, whereby came the Scriptures and our Lord Jesus Christ.
Praise God that He has seen fit to call to Himself a people for His glory from all the tribes and tongues of the earth. Be humbled by His amazing grace.