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The Everlasting Covenant

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    Building up the Tabernacle of David

    In addition to all that has already been set forth from the Scriptures, showing most plainly that the number of the people of Israel is made complete only by those from among the Gentiles who accept the Gospel, two portions of Scripture will be noted here. And as we read, let it not be forgotten that the father of all Israel, Abraham, was taken from among the Gentiles, and that he received the promises, and the blessing of the Spirit, before he was circumcised, to show that God is no respecter of persons, but that all who believe are Israel.EVCO 507.2

    The first that we shall consider is in the fifteenth chapter of Acts. The apostles and elders had come together, not to settle a point of doctrine, nor to enact something new, but to ease the minds of the new converts from among the Gentiles, who were being troubled by false teachers. Peter had told how the Gentiles had heard the Gospel at his mouth, and had believed, and that God had given them the Holy Ghost, “and put no difference between us and them, purifying their hearts by faith;” and then Peter added that by the grace of Christ the Jews themselves would be saved even as the Gentiles. (Verses 7-11.)EVCO 507.3

    Then James addressed the congregation, saying, “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. Known unto God are all his works from the beginning of the world,” 1Acts 15:14-18.EVCO 508.1

    The portion which James quoted is from Amos 9:11, 12, and the verses immediately following are: “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes him that soweth seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt. And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them. And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the Lord thy God.” (Compare this last with the promise to David in 2 Samuel 7:10, 11)EVCO 508.2

    The tabernacle, or house of David, is to be built up only through the preaching of the Gospel to the Gentiles; and this is what the ancient prophets declared. That it was not done, or at least begun, before the first advent of our Lord, was not the fault of God, nor of His prophets, but of the people, who would not heed. God showed in many ways how anxious He was for the gathering in of all the Gentiles. Let not any Christian in these days repeat the selfish unbelief of the professed people of God in ancient times, and think that Israel are to be gathered in any other way than through faith in the Gospel of Christ, which is “to all people.”EVCO 508.3

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