The following program is recorded content created by the Truth Network. Once again, anti-Semitism raises its head in the Church. It's time for The Line of Fire with your host, biblical scholar and cultural commentator, Dr. Michael Brown. Your voice for moral sanity and spiritual clarity. Call 866-34-TRUTH to get on The Line of Fire. And now, here's your host, Dr. Michael Brown.
Yes, it's hard to imagine it happening again, but on the other hand, no surprise at all. Anti-Semitism raising its head in the Church with major Church leaders and denominations issuing anti-Semitic statements. You say, what? Well, we'll get into it today. It is Thirdly Jewish Thursday.
Michael Brown, welcome to the broadcast. So here's the deal. Any Jewish related question of any kind, any Jewish related discussion that you want to have with me, phone lines are open, 866-34-TRUTH, 866-34-87-884. You say, what do you mean by Jewish related? Well, it could be about Jesus being the Jewish Messiah.
It could be about an Islamic prophecy. It could be a question about the Hebrew language or Judaism or Jewish practice. It could be a question about modern Israel today. It could be a question even, a specific Old Testament verse. Anything like that, that qualifies as Jewish related questions about Jewish culture, Jewish people. We'll do our best to give you solid answers.
866-34-87-884. And as always, when the phone lines are open, the earlier you're able to call in, the better chance we have of getting to your question during the course of the show. And of course, I welcome calls from folks who differ with me. Maybe you consider yourself a counter missionary, or you watch the videos of counter missionaries. You think they've raised some valid arguments.
You want to challenge me with one of them. Or maybe you're a follower of Jesus, but you've got questions having watched some material attacking our faith. Very happy to talk with you as well.
Okay. When I came to faith in late 1971, I came to faith, as you know, many of you know my stories, heroin shooting, LSD using, hippie rock drummer, with very little religion in me. I was bar mitzvahed at 13, but my Judaism was very nominal, and I knew nothing about Christianity. Now I get radically born again, and it so happened that the little church where I came to faith really loved Israel and the Jewish people, and really believed that God had brought the Jewish people back to Israel. And I think the people in that church would have been shocked to know about anti-Semitism in church history. They were kind of cut off from a lot of church history, having come to the faith out of different backgrounds, and it's not like they were tied back to denominational Christianity or church history. So it was quite a shock when the local rabbi who befriended me gave me a book on anti-Semitism in church history. It was a real shock.
I mean, how could this be? But here's the deal. Because I got saved in an Italian Pentecostal church, and this church was, a lot of the people came out of Catholicism, and they kind of rejected all Catholic tradition and things like that. We did not have a deep sense of attachment to church history. It's not like coming to faith, say you're Greek Orthodox, and you're constantly talking about the fathers, the Greek Orthodox, the early church fathers, and the heritage there, and so on. Or if you're in a strong Protestant Reformation church, and you're talking a lot about Luther and the Reformers and Calvin and stuff like that, that wasn't the case. We talked about the Bible, and today, that was kind of our consciousness. So I looked at it and thought, okay, that's odd.
I don't get that at all. But I didn't know who these people were. I didn't know who Augustine was. Martin Luther's name didn't mean much of anything to me.
I just know whoever they were, that's bad. But it's not the Bible, and it's not my church, and it's not the real faith. I just kind of dismissed it. Well, as the years go on, you realize you can't just dismiss it, because this is an ugly blemish in much of church history. And there were prominent church leaders who had a terrible blind spot towards the Jewish people, who demonized the Jewish people, who in some extreme cases even called for harmful actions against the Jewish people.
You can't just dismiss it. Now, I know there was rhetoric at certain times. People would point to fourth century rhetoric that John Chrysostom was involved with against the Jews and the rhetoric of the day, and they would say Martin Luther was an equal opportunity offender. He blasted all his opponents, and he thought somehow the Jews and Catholics were in cahoots, or Jews were trying to kill him. When he had the final sickness from which he died, and he had written to his wife about coming down sick, he thought for sure the Jews had done something to poison him. So what he thought of Jewish people was so far from reality that it fueled some of the fire of his antisemitism. Nonetheless, if these people are true Christians, how could they have these antisemitic tendencies? How could they write these things?
How could they say these things? So, that of course raised so many questions for me that over the years I really studied this, I really dug in. My most translated book is Our Hands Are Stained with Blood, the Tragic Story of the Church and the Jewish People. It is a real, real eye-opener, and it was in print continuously from 1992 until 2019 when we put out a new expanded edition.
So it's since been in print continuously now since 1992, so over 30 years. And that's why I'm acutely aware of antisemitism in the church to this day. Now, here's the other side of the story. I have worked with Christians around the world, some of the finest Christians on the planet, and not one of them that I've worked with in other countries has had a trace of antisemitism. In fact, when they learn about the past, they're shocked.
They have no idea. You go to Asia, you go to Africa, you talk to Christians there, you talk about antisemitism in church history, they're shocked by what? I remember an Iranian Christian, I've often quoted this, but I've heard these sentiments many a time. I remember an Iranian Christian telling me at my home in Maryland, he was either doing some repair or a salesman, I forget what it was, but I found out he was a believer, we got to talking, and he said, anyone who hates the Jews is not a Christian. So that's what I've run into around the world, and Christian leaders I've worked with around America have been lovers of Israel and the Jewish people. Yes, believing Jews need Jesus like everyone else to be quote saved, but standing with Israel today and loving the Jewish people.
However, the more the liberal denominations will constantly shift in an anti-Israel stance that is so severe that it can rightly be called antisemitic. So Orthodox Jewish leader living in Israel, Jonathan Feldstein, reached out to me. We've written a few articles together, and he's taken the initiative and said, hey, Mike, how about we combat these together as Orthodox Jew and Messianic Jew. Now that messes with some people, but I'm thrilled to stand side by side with my Jewish brother. Yes, I want him to believe in Yeshua, and he would prefer I was a traditional Jew, obviously, but I'm glad to join hands with him, join arms with him to expose antisemitism, especially in the church. So he reached out to me and said, hey, could we write an article together?
Absolutely. So he gets it started, then I'll rewrite and add and take away, send back, and then we get it finalized. So you can read it now on our website, askdrbrown.org, together with a great picture of the two of us. So if you go there, askdrbrown, askdrbrown.org, you'll see the picture of Jonathan Feldstein and yours truly, and there is the article, once again, Christian Antisemitism. So here are the stories that got our attention.
In fact, one got his attention, then I said, hey, here's another one, and we put them together in the article. B'nai B'rith International, this is a Jewish news syndicate, and this is June 21st. B'nai B'rith International expressed concern and outrage over the newly elected General Secretary of the World Council of Churches, Reverend Professor Dr. Jerry Pillay, who has a history of making anti-Jewish and anti-Israel comments. So he's the dean of a theological seminary in South Africa, he is a dark-skinned man, so he has lived with the reality of apartheid in South Africa, but this is what he has done. In 2016, he compared Israel and the alleged, quote, exclusionary and violent character of the Israeli-Zionist project to South Africa's racial apartheid. He also expressed support for the BDS movement against Israel, writing that, quote, Jewish leadership helped, quote, influence European nationalism and colonization with a common desire to establish in the state of Israel and the land of Palestine. Additionally, he's accused Israel of wrongfully acting against, quote, the indigenous people of the land under the guise of national security or national interest. He also asked Christians to resist the empirical ambition of Israeli Jews. This is classic anti-Semitism, demonizing Israel, demonizing the Jewish people, not just exaggerating charges, but falsifying charges against them. And this gentleman, for whom I pray that God would bring him into the full light of his truth and grace, is now the head of the World Council of Churches.
Yes, these are primarily liberal churches, quote, progressive churches, and they're fundamental aspects of scripture that they would ultimately deny and we differ with them on. But how in the world do you elevate someone to that position when they made statements like this? Blatantly false statements. Remember, Israeli Arabs, so those who agreed to stay in the land after Israel declared its statehood in 1947-48, about 200,000, there are over one and a half million today in Israel. So much for genocide and apartheid. They have full voting rights with the Israeli people. They have two parties in the Knesset, this is all in our article that we point out, Jonathan Feldstein and I. They have membership and representation in the court, from the lower courts up to the Supreme Court. They're involved in everything from healthcare to the media to the army.
They don't have to serve, but many do. So to call it apartheid, that is a bigoted and false statement. And to say, well, Israel oppresses the Palestinians in the name of national security. No, they make security choices because of the threat of terrorism. That may hurt the Palestinians, but that's up to the Palestinian leadership to root out the terrorism. And then a lot of the security interests would go away. For example, the fence and part wall that was put up. Israelis don't like that. They'd rather it was down for many reasons. But until the threat of terrorism stops, if you've got people trying to murder your people, and you put up a fence, and then here under a wall to stop that, you do it.
You do it. You say, well, no, no, no, he's talking about also the people, the Palestinians that are in exile and that are living in terrible conditions in Gaza Strip and in the West Bank, which is biblical Judea and Samaria. Well, the problem with that is that Israel completely abandoned Gaza Strip, gave it over to the Palestinians, and they voted in Hamas as their leadership.
Terrorist. So of course Israel's got to protect itself. And as for the Palestinian Authority, the Palestinians living there are living under Palestinian Authority rule. When people are asked, Israeli Arabs, would you like to go under Palestinian Authority rule or Israeli rule? Israeli rule.
We prefer that. Overwhelmingly. And Israel is continuing to try to work with Palestinian leadership to come up with peaceful solutions to live as neighbors side by side. But for the most part, the failing is on the Palestinian leadership.
And this has been demonstrated time and time again. These are bigoted, ugly, false statements by the current leader now of the World Council of Churches. No wonder many Jewish leaders are saying this is really setting back Jewish-Christian relations and dialogue.
It's not just them. The PCUSA has issued blatantly anti-Semitic statements. We'll talk about that. Take your calls when we come back. It's The Line of Fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on The Line of Fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH.
Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Welcome, friends, to Thirdly Jewish Thursday. Be sure to sign up for our e-mails because Monday we are sending out our e-mail announcement about our next trip to Israel, at long last having to cancel the last one after delaying it, delaying it, delaying it because of COVID. Can't wait to be with all of you that can join us.
That's going to be May 2023, so May of next year, what, 10 months from now. So be sure you're getting our e-mails. AskDr.Brown.org.
AskDr.Brown.org. Take 30 seconds to sign up there. Oh, by the way, there are a ton of other reasons to get them, but I want to make sure you hear about the Israel trip. It's going to be special, amazing, and some firsts on this trip as well, so looking forward to hearing from you on that score. Okay, I'm going to the phones momentarily, but I just want to finish this up. I've said for many years that you can watch as the denomination shifts left and gets away from scriptural authority. Here's what it will do. It will change its views on abortion, going from pro-life to pro-abortion. It will change its views on homosexuality and same-sex, quote, marriage, going from opposing to supporting, and it will change its views on Israel, going from standing with Israel, not at the expense of the Palestinians, but standing with Israel, to siding so militantly with the Palestinians that it becomes blatantly anti-Zionist to the point of being anti-Semitic. It's like clockwork.
You watch, track it over a period of years, it'll happen. As to why, that's something we've discussed, we can discuss another time. So the United States Presbyterian Church, PCUSA, passed some resolutions. Why Israel, right?
Not enough going on in the world. They passed resolutions at the 225th General Assembly. Are you ready for this? I'm going to read it verbatim. Israel's laws, policies, and practices regarding the Palestinian people fulfill the international legal definition of apartheid. The resolution claimed that there were two sets of laws for Israelis and Palestinians, which are preferential for the former and oppressive to the latter. It also asserted that Palestinian land and water were stolen for use by Jewish-only settlements, that Palestinians were denied freedom of residence and movement living in, quote, separate reserves and ghettos, echoing language used in the resolution passed in the same subject at the North Carolina Democratic Party state convention on June 18th. The church claimed that non-Jewish Arabs living in Israel and the disputed territories, quote, have an inferior status. This overture is preserved with the hope that it will lead to a peaceful reconciliation with the people of Israel and Palestine. Similar to that, so you've got two countries, Israel and Palestine.
Notice that. Similar to that, which occurred in South Africa, when apartheid was internationally acknowledged. So Christians spoke out in the 50s against segregation in the United States, and later against apartheid in South Africa. They must again raise their voices and condemn Israel's discrimination against Palestinians, and give a name to the crime against humanity. That is, that this discrimination represents the crime of apartheid. Oh, it goes on, and it says, hey, you know, we don't want to be called anti-Semites. I'm paraphrasing here.
So let's change the definition of anti-Semitism to speak of all Semitic peoples, and you just say anti-Jewish, that's a term, but of course that's not who we are. Shame. Shame on the PCUSA. But, no surprise. All right, we go to the phones, starting with Jonathan in Alberta, Canada. Welcome to the line of fire.
Hi, Dr. Brown. I'm listening to a podcast right now called Jewish History Podcast, and he was mentioning in there that the Sanhedrin at 30 AD was moved from Jerusalem to Hanukkah. And I was just wondering if you could comment on that. Like, why would they give up their position there in Jerusalem and move? Because he was saying that when they did move, that they didn't have any jurisdiction anymore over the hard cases and stuff. And also, it's kind of interesting, looking at the Sanhedrin, at that time, at 30 AD, Gamliel, I'm assuming it's the same one from Acts 5, then became the nasi, or the prince, of the Sanhedrin. And he was there for 20 years, and I was just wondering if you could, again, comment on that. Right. So, the move that is normally talked about is post-destruction of the temple in the year 70, when Rabbi Yochanan Ben Zakkai went to Roman leadership and asked if they could have Yavneh, if they could have a place to go and convene.
And we're given that, because with the destruction of Jerusalem and everything going on, they couldn't be there. As for the move in the year 30, who's doing this podcast? Um, the guy's name is Rabbi Yasser Wolby. Okay. Got it.
Got it. Do you know him at all? I know others with that last name, but maybe not related to him, so I'm not directly familiar.
But hang on, let me just check that. You've got my interest here. It was the second podcast of his whole series there, and so he goes through Jewish history, and he just mentioned that, that he moved from... Wolby, Wolby, no, okay, not familiar with him, but I'm looking at his podcast. Yeah, so Rabbi Yaakov Wolby, Jewish history podcast, etc. Okay.
Yeah, I'm not familiar with him, so I'll check during a break to find out more. But basically, the reasoning behind this, you know, you look at statements like it was exiled at that time. It would have had to do with autonomy under Rome, and being able to function the way it needed to function, and therefore having to move. One statement, Sanhedrin had to move from another location called the trading place farther to the east in a much less significant spot to be forced to move from a beautiful, gorgeous, awesome location in the temple, some spot much less beautiful, sustained reverential, must have seemed a terrible put-down, and so here's what the Talmud says on this. Yeah, 40 years before the destruction of the temple, the Sanhedrin was banished from the Chamber of Unionstone and sat in the trading station on the Temple Mount, so just a different location in Jerusalem, not outside the city. Now, yeah, so some have tried to make an argument from this, because you know, you've got Sanhedrin there in Jerusalem in the Gospels and the Book of Acts, so it's just a location move from one location to another.
The reasons behind it, I don't know all the details of it, but the Sanhedrin continued to function. With the destruction of the temple, then there was an ultimate move and shift, you know, out of Jerusalem, but continued to function there. Some are trying to make a statement on this that it had to do with, well, that's when Jesus was crucified, etc., but I don't think there's any connection there.
You know, I'm looking at websites even as we're talking to try to make that argument, but those are Christian websites. As to the internal Jewish reasoning, why it was moved out, I'll have to check that. So the specific question about Gamliel that you're trying to understand, could you just repeat that? Yeah, so just looking at the Sanhedrin stuff, I was looking on Wikipedia, and it gives references to who all the Nazis were, especially at that time, and so, yeah, it seemed like Gamliel was the Nazi from 30 AD to 50 AD, and then his son from 50 AD to the destruction of the temple. So I just thought it was really interesting that, I don't know, was it because of his wisdom or something like that, or does it have to do a little bit, maybe, with Acts chapter 5?
No, no, no, absolutely, that would be, no, no, no. And it's Nasi, by the way, just so you know, because some people that aren't familiar with what you're saying might have thought, why is he saying Nazi? So obviously you weren't saying that, yeah, so the Nasi, the head, no, it's unrelated to Acts 5, and of course, rabbinic Jews don't believe the New Testament sources or accuracy or anything like that, but simply a highly esteemed leader.
If you could be recognized for your wisdom, you could be recognized for leadership qualities, there could be just, you know, interconnections that you have, just like anything else, there was not a totally specific process, like here, you know, we vote, and then we count electoral votes, and total electoral votes, and that's how you get the President of the United States, there was not a process that was as fixed that would say, okay, the one with the most wisdom is the one that gets elected, or the one with the best lineage, or, you know, there are other things that played into it, so I can't say why specifically it was him. But not that, well, he had wisdom in Acts 5, and that's a demonstration of it, that would not be in Jewish thinking there. Hey, Jonathan, thank you for the questions, and sorry I couldn't give you more details, 866-348-7884 is the number to call, and friends, I want to encourage you, there are Jewish people receiving the Lord on a very regular basis, there are Jewish people embracing Jesus as Messiah from many, many different backgrounds, hearts and minds are being opened, I have the utmost respect and esteem for Rabbi friends of mine who pray hours daily, study hours daily, earnestly pursuing God as best as they understand, having the zeal that Paul spoke of in Romans 10, obviously they believe I'm wrong, I believe they're wrong, but my prayer is, God, as they seek you, hear them, answer them, open their hearts and minds to the fullness of your goodness, truth, and love, and bring them to a knowledge of the Messiah, we'll be right back, stay right here. It's the Line of Fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown.
Get on the Line of Fire by calling 866-344-TRUTH. Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Thanks for joining us on Thoroughly Jewish Thursday. Just a reminder, visit vitaminmission.com. Check out the great health supplements by our sponsor, Dr. Mark Stangler. He'll be joining us on the Israel trip, he's eager to go and we're going to have a night, God willing, with him and Dr. Mrs. Stangler. You have the two together, we're going to have an Ask the Doctors Stangler night, so that's going to be fun. You get Ask Dr. Brown nights as well in addition to the tour. We normally do live radio broadcasts from there, you get to sit in on, probably have a night with some worship, local worship, and Messianic speakers, so yeah, don't want to miss a trip. But right now, get even healthier before you go, vitaminmission.com.
Check out the great health supplements, Dr. Stangler turns around, gives you a discount, and then supports our radio broadcast as well. Okay, I'm going back to the phones, momentarily 866-344-TRUTH, but in the Talmud, the statement that ties in with Jonathan's question about the Sanhedrin, it is in Shabbat, so in the Babylonian Talmud, Shabbat 15a. So, I'm going to read a relevant portion in the expanded translation of Adin Stanshalz, so this is adding much commentary to the text. So, here you've got Rabbi Yishmael saying that, so, Rabbi Yishmael said of Rabbi Yosef Elil, the Sages sent him to him, Rabbi, tell us two or three statements that you once told in the name of your father. He said to them, this is what my father said, 180 years before the temple was destroyed, the evil kingdom of Rome invaded Israel. 80 years before the temple was destroyed, they decreed impurity on the land of the nations and on glass vessels.
40 years before the temple was destroyed, this is the relevant portion, the Sanhedrin was exiled from the chamber of union stones in the temple and sat in the stores on the temple mount. With regard to the last statement, the Gemara, so the Talmudic commentary asks, what are the halakhic legal ramifications of this statement? Rabbi Yitzchak of Demi said, to say that they no longer judge cases of fines. The Talmud wonders, does it enter your mind that they no longer judge cases of fines? Even several generations after the temple was destroyed continued to judge cases of fines in the land of Israel. Rather, Amandans say they no longer judge capital cases. The authority to impose the death penalty was stripped from the Sanhedrin and therefore they willingly left the chamber of union stone since the Sanhedrin no longer convenes in the designated place.
The legal ruling, the halakhah, said it no longer has the authority to judge capital cases. This is in the commentary called the tosefot, that's explained there. So for those who have no idea, we just read, don't sweat it, for those of you who have this meaning, wonderful. Alright, we go back to the phones. Brian in Fort Worth, Texas, welcome to the line of fire. Hey Dr. Brown, how are you doing today? Doing great. In fact, tonight fly to Pennsylvania to speak at the Messiah Conference tomorrow, God willing, fly home tomorrow night, and then with my grandson Andrew, head down to Fort Worth on Saturday to speak at Mercy Culture Sunday morning. So I'm doing great, thank you.
Awesome. Hey, the question I had, I've been studying the tithe, and I just, I wonder if the western church has gotten the tithe wrong. I don't see a lot of it in early church fathers about the tithe, and I've noticed a lot of people seem to take Old Testament verses out of context, like Malachi 3, or even when Jesus in Matthew 23, 23 says you should tithe, but he's talking to people under the Mosaic law in the Old Covenant, and when they mention Malachi, that was a death penalty, or it's bad circumstances if you didn't say a tithe, it was a requirement. New Testament seems to focus more on sacrificial and generous giving, so have we got it wrong?
Here's where we have it wrong. We have it wrong if we preach that it's a law. We have it wrong if we think that this is a part of the Mosaic covenant that we're under. You know, the same people that will often quote this, right, laws about tithing, then will go out and have shrimp and lobster for dinner, you know, so why are you under one part of the law and not the other? However, here's what we have to remember, and many preachers get this right, that the tithe predates the law, right, Genesis 14, Abraham ties to Melchizedek, Genesis 28, Jacob vows a tenth of all he has, or that God will provide for him, that will be given back to the Lord. In fact, when you read it, it seems kind of stingy, you know, you bless me, do this, keep me, I'll give you a tenth back.
But in any case, then it's instituted by law, and it's not just 10%, there are additional ties that were brought as well. So Matthew 23, you're correct, that is spoken to Jewish leaders under the law, and he's commending them for being careful with tithing, but saying they neglected the weightier matters of justice, mercy, and faithfulness. That being said, while the New Testament does not command us to tithe, so I do not believe that is a New Testament commandment, the New Testament absolutely calls for systematic, generous, even sacrificial giving, and it calls us to give of the firstfruits. So I teach tithing as a great biblical principle to follow, and that God does honor it, and the spirit of Malachi 3 is the issue to me, that if we feel the Lord calling us to do this, then he's saying, okay, put me to the test, you honor me, and I'll honor you.
And that can come in many, many different ways. But when you read Paul's teaching about giving in 1 Corinthians 9 and 2 Corinthians 8 and 9 and the principle of seeking first the kingdom, and even in 1 Corinthians 16, where at the beginning of the week you're to put aside money that was going to be for a special offering to help the saints in Jerusalem, so the principle is an excellent principle. I see the New Testament reinforcing the principle and going deeper, and I see the principles of honoring the Lord with our firstfruits as something that transcend the law. You have it in Proverbs 3, for example, verses 9 and 10, which is, again, it's a principle rather than giving as a law.
So I teach it as an excellent working principle, but no, we are not under it. I don't believe that you're cursed by God if you don't tithe, but I do believe that it is an excellent thing to practice because many do not give systematically. Many give if they have money left over after paying all their bills.
Many don't give proportionately to their income. That's another New Testament principle. The one who has much gives much, the one who has little gives little, although all can give sacrificially as unto the Lord. So I agree with you that it's not law, but it's a great biblical principle that predates the law and one that I encourage to be practiced in the liberty of the Spirit as opposed to under the Sinai Covenant. All right?
Yeah, definitely. And then the one other thing, just to add to that, is how do we equate the local church to the storehouse? Because I don't make the connection in the New Testament that that is where we're supposed to give.
Now, I'm not saying that we definitely have a duty to support the poor and our pastors and teachers, but where do we equate that, the storehouse, to the church? Right, well, it's the local place of assembly and the local place where money is gathered, right? Like when Paul was talking to the Corinthians, so they all put money aside, then he's going to meet with them. When he comes in, it could have easily been given to leaders to distribute. We know in the book of Acts that leaders, the leaders were responsible for distribution of funds, right? So it could just be haphazard, you know? It could all be haphazard where, you know, they have, you know, they call the Pentecostal handshake or the Baptist handshake when you're leaving the church building, someone shakes your hand, they put a $10 bill or a $100 bill in there, and it can happen like that, that this way there's accountability, this way there is joint wisdom in dispersing funds, this way there is a systematic thinking about it. In other words, okay, here's a project that we want to help as a church so the leaders now can gather the funds together and with accountability help on this project. Otherwise, it's like buckshot, you know, a thousand different things at once, you can't be systematic. Okay, what are you doing for the local community, 90 different things?
Well, how about we concentrate on a couple effectively? So again, I'm not looking at it legalistically, that's the thing. I'm not saying there's necessarily a legalistic equivalent of the storehouses in ancient Israel with the local church, but in principle, functioning the same way, just like you would support the priests and Levites as spiritual leaders among you, so that's another New Testament principle, those who preach the gospel should make their living from the gospel, right? So, if I'm working full-time to pour into the flock and that's what God's called me to do, then the flock should support me and they're going to do it, not enrich me so that I'm richer than everybody and I'm the king and they're the paupers, but there should be support and if the monies are given in a common way, then you can disperse it and New Testament is taking that for granted, like 1 Timothy 5, the principle that elders that rule well are worthy of double honor, especially those who teach and preach the word. Well, how is that double honor, double stipend being distributed?
The assumption is funds are given to designated leaders who are then responsible to the flock and to God to distribute accordingly. Alright, let's go to Carl in Canada. Thanks for calling the line of fire. Oh, hi, how you doing, Dr. Brown? Very well.
Fantastic. Shalom. Shalom.
Shalom. Hey, listen, my question is quite controversial, actually, among church leaders, and I think it's adding to the anti-Semitic perspective, and that is this, is that Paul talks about in Romans 11 how the Gentiles are grafted into the natural branch, and I believe some leaders have taken that to mean that we have replaced Israel, we're called spiritual Israel, and there's no longer a requirement for Israel itself in terms of its existence, I suppose. Yeah, Carl, that's been the root of anti-Semitism in the church over the centuries. In other words, when the early church, the early Gentile believers began to say, we are the new Israel, and God has replaced the old Israel, God has done away with the old Israel, that Israel no longer has a purpose as a nation in the plan of God, individual Jews can be saved, but all the promises made to Israel in the Old Testament are now fulfilled by the church, which takes on that role of being the light to the world, that those sentiments open the door to anti-Semitism in church history. There are people who hold to replacement theology today or the technical word, supersessionism, that hold to it today who are not anti-Semites, but absolutely, that contributes to it. So, when Paul references the Israel of God in Galatians 6, 16, oh, that's the church is not the Israel of God, God's done with the old Israel. Gentiles are grafted into the Jewish tree, so that's, they're the new Jews, and Romans 2 says, hey, you're not a Jew outwardly but inwardly, so Gentiles are the new Jews, and Philippians 3, hey, we're the circumcision, so we're the new circumcision as the church, etc. So, misreading and misunderstanding those verses has opened the door wide to anti-Semitism in church history, and to this day, and in fact, Carl, in fact, that's what Paul warns against in Romans 11, right?
Don't be ignorant of this mystery, the hard thing on Israel is only in part, in the end, all Israel, physical Israel, Jewish people, Israel at the end of the age will be saved. My book, Our Hands Are Staying with Blood, nails this. Thank you, Carl. It's the line of fire with your host, Dr. Michael Brown. Get on the line of fire by calling 866-34-TRUTH. Here again is Dr. Michael Brown. Welcome, welcome to the line of fire. I'm going straight back to the phones. We go to Bruce in Utah. You are on the line of fire.
Thanks, Dr. Brown. On Christian broadcast quite a bit, I hear references to an end times temple that's going to be built in Jerusalem, but you rarely hear much more than that, so I have a quick three-part question. What is the status of that? Who will be in charge, and what will the function be? Can you enlighten me?
Sure. So, there are two sets of answers to your three-part question. According to the traditional Jewish view, when the Messiah is revealed, that one of the things he will do is rebuild the third temple. Until then, you pray for it, but you don't speculate on it, you don't try to make it happen. He will rebuild it, and it will be glorious, and the presence of God will be there in a wonderful way, and that will be the temple to which the nations of the world go during the Millennial Kingdom. As to what's in it, but you'd expect it to be a replica of everything that was in the first tabernacle-slash-temple, the question would be, what about Ten Commandments and things like that, that were in the Ark of the Covenant that was lost?
That's another question that is, to my knowledge, not genuinely addressed. The second answer is that there are religious Jews in Israel who'd believe that just like it was right for the Jewish people to come back to the land as part of the ushering in of the Messianic redemption, that in the same way, it's right to prepare to build the temple. So, there is the Temple Mount Institute, where Jews of priestly and Levitical lineage have been training.
There are replicas of everything that was in the first temple, aside from the Ark of the Covenant, you know, with the Ten Commandments and things like that, but they've made replicas of the bowls, they've made replicas of the candle stand and things like that, and they are simply waiting for the go-ahead to rebuild the temple. Now, the problem is, in order to do it at the traditional site, you'd have to get rid of the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the Dome of the Rock. You've got these two Muslim holy sites, one especially holy, which even the thought of touching that would launch a massive world war. I mean, an unbelievable conflict would arise out of that.
Some argue that there's a different location and you can begin building now, but that's a minority-minority view. As to who would be in charge of it, well, a reconstituted son, Hedron, and Jewish leadership would be in charge of it, but this is all speculation. The ones talking about this, the vast majority of the ones talking about this, are evangelical Christians. They're the ones talking about it. The religious Jews in Israel, the vast majority believe that when the Messiah is revealed, that he'll do this. And until then, you're playing with fire, you're messing with things, you're touching things you shouldn't touch. Your average Israeli doesn't think about it at all. So this is really something of Christian fascination more than anything, and those are all the details that I could give.
I'm not looking for it, I don't think about it, honestly, and if there's an attempt to do it in the coming years, that will be really interesting to see how that unfolds. Oh, that's a big help. Thank you so much. I guess that's why we don't hear much more. Exactly.
It's fractured. Yeah, exactly. All right, you're very welcome, Bruce. Thank you for the question. Let's go to Detroit, Michigan. Natalie, you are on the line of fire. Are you there? Sorry, I'm taking my phone off speaker. Hello, Dr. Brown. How are you today?
I'm doing great, thanks for asking. Okay, great. So I have a question for you about John 12 verse 41, and if there's any connection there with the prophecy, not the prophecy, the vision Isaiah sees in Isaiah 6 verse 1 to 7. So in John 12, it says that Isaiah said this because he saw his glory. Is he talking about seeing Jesus' glory, or is he talking about just seeing God's glory in general? Oh, no, no, it is.
Okay. Absolutely, Isaiah 6. Absolutely referring to Isaiah 6, which is telling you, then, that the one who saw the Lord high and lifted up in Isaiah 6 is the one who also prophesied about the suffering Messiah in Isaiah 53, because that's what is being referenced there in John 12. And seeing his glory definitely referenced that, which would mean that it was the Son of God that Isaiah saw in Isaiah the 6th chapter, because the Father remains hidden, unseeable. 1 Timothy 6, 16, John 1, 18, no one has seen God. So the one that they would see in the Old Testament when they would see God was the Son, because it's the Son's job mission to reveal the Father, make the Father known, to be the visible representation of the invisible God.
So absolutely referring to Isaiah 6 in John 12. Okay, great, thank you so much. You are very welcome. Thanks for the question. Alright, let's see, we go over to Sean. Okay, Sean had a question, Sean in Chicago. Is it antisemitic to say the church is spiritual Israel?
No, but possibly. Let me explain. If you say physical Israel is still physical Israel, God has still given promises to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. God brought the Jewish people back from around the world to the land, and he's continued to work out his purposes, and the Messiah will return and set up his kingdom in Jerusalem, and the promises given to Israel will be fulfilled, and in the end there'll be a national turning and Israel will be saved. Well, no, there's nothing antisemitic, saying the church is spiritual Israel. I differ with the concept. I don't believe it's what the New Testament teaches, but no, it's not antisemitic, it's not hatred of Jews or rejection of the Jewish people, or demonizing of the Jewish people, or falsely caricaturing the Jewish people.
No. Now, you could say it's antisemitic because it's saying that they're just natural. They don't have a spiritual side, but I don't think that's what people mean, that they believe there are still promises to Israel, and God's hand is still on the Jewish people in terms of preserving them and keeping his promise, although Jews like everyone else need Jesus and Yeshua to be saved. But, to say the church is the spiritual is, again, I don't agree with that concept, but I've heard people with deep love for the Jewish people come up to me and say, oh, we are all spiritual Jews and we love Israel, and they are Israel lovers and they do love the Jewish people and do their best to be a blessing to the Jewish people. However, if by spiritual Israel someone means that the church is the new Israel and God is finished with old Israel, then yes, as I answered Carl previously, yes, that is antisemitic. That is saying God has forever rejected the Jewish people as a people. Not only so, it makes him into a liar.
How so? How about I read some scripture to you. Jeremiah, chapter 31, verses 31 to 35. Now, what's notable here is this is immediately after the New Covenant passage, right? So, right after God has said he's making a new covenant with the House of Israel and the House of Judah, look at what he says. Thus said the Lord, who established the sun for light by day, the laws of moon and stars for light by night, says Jeremiah 31, beginning verse 35, who stirs up the sea into roaring waves, whose name is Lord of Hosts. If these laws should ever be annulled by me, declares the Lord, only then will the offspring of Israel cease to be a nation before me for all time.
Wow! As long as heaven and earth endure, he's saying, then Israel will endure as a people. But what about sin? Verse 37, thus said the Lord, if the heavens above could be measured, and the foundations of the earth below could be fathomed, only then would I reject all the offspring of Israel for all that they have done, declares the Lord. If you say, oh, no, no, but the church is in Israel, then that makes God into a liar. It makes him completely duplicitous. He gives a guaranteed covenantal promise to a physical people, and this is that! Yeah, I'm gonna change that now. And then how about this in Jeremiah chapter 32?
Check out these words here. Ah, let's see, scrolling down. Jeremiah chapter 32, oh, I'm sorry, end of 33, that's why I didn't find it. End of chapter 33, my bad there. I should know it having written a commentary on Jeremiah. The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, verse 23 of chapter 33. You see what this people said, the two families which the Lord chose have now been rejected by him. It could be speaking of David and Levi, right, their descendants, but in context here, it is speaking of the nation of Israel, so the offspring of Jacob and the family of David. The two families which the Lord chose have now been rejected by him. This is what people are saying. Thus they despise my people and regard them as no longer a nation.
Sound familiar? Thus said the Lord, as surely as I have established my covenant with day and night, the laws of heaven and earth, so I will never reject the offspring of Jacob and my servant David. I will never fail to take from his offspring rulers for the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, indeed I will store their fortunes and take them back in love. God will keep his word. So the church is the church, it is the gathering together of Jew and Gentile in Jesus, where we are one, where we are equals, where we have the same Savior and the same God, and there remain national promises to national Israel. Yes, Israel by being chosen has suffered much, but Israel by being chosen will also have a glorious destiny.
So says God in his word. You can count on it. And friends pray for us as we continue to reach out daily to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Back with you tomorrow. And as always, we'll see you next time.
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