by Nancy Petrey, pianist, poet, teacher and author of The Honeycomb is Waiting: Poetic Devotionals, Jewish Roots Journey: Memoirs of a Mizpah, Why Christians Should Care About Their Jewish Roots, and Habitation of Honey.
Now as He drew near, He saw the city and wept over it. – Luke 19:41
Jesus was acclaimed as the Son of David and the King of Israel as He made His triumphal entry into Jerusalem the week He was crucified. The crowds shouted hosannas to Him and welcomed Him as their Messiah (Matthew 21:9; John 12:12-13). Bartimaeus also acclaimed Him as such, when he cried out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” (Mark 10:46-47). Jesus, likewise, identified Himself as the Son of David, in His final words of Holy Scripture: “I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star” (Revelation 22:16).
The Son of David is returning one day to Jerusalem, the Jewish capital, the city He wept over when the Jewish leaders rejected Him (Luke 13:34-35; 19:41). Jesus also wept when his friend Lazarus died (John 11:35). He was not only crying because of empathy with Mary and Martha in their grief, but He likely was crying about the unbelief of the crowd. He already knew that He would raise up Lazarus, and He already knows that one day He will raise up the nation of Israel! On that day “all Israel will be saved” (Romans 11:25-27). But until that day comes, He weeps over His beloved Chosen people.
How sad that “a child was born unto them, a Son was given … a Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6), and Israel rejected Him! But, wait! There is a silver lining to that cloud.
For if their casting Yeshua aside means reconciliation for the world, what will their accepting Him mean? It will be life from the dead! – Romans 11:15 (Complete Jewish Bible)
In other words, if Israel’s rejection of Yeshua as Messiah resulted in the Gospel going to the Gentiles, then their acceptance of Him will bring world-wide revival! Isn’t that what we all want? But how have we been praying for it?
King David wrote, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem. May they prosper who love you” (Psalm 122:6). That is tantamount to praying for the salvation of the Jewish people, that their eyes will be opened, like Bartimaeus, to see the Son of David, their Messiah! Our own prosperity, spiritually and every other way, is tied up with this imperative. Will we be obedient?
The tears of our Lord poured out on His people, and now we Gentiles who know Him as Savior and Lord are His people, too. We should have our prayers mixed with tears of repentance for what the Church has done to the Jewish people throughout history to harden them against their own Messiah! The Church is suffering from a case of mistaken identity! Jesus is weeping about it as He intercedes for the eyes of His Church to be opened!
(Based on Romans 11)
So, what is my identity now that I am saved?
I have a Jewish Lord, so how should I behave?
I was graciously grafted into a Jewish olive tree,
I was a wild branch when Jesus set me free.
The Seed of Abraham was planted in the ground –
They’d nailed Him to a tree when I was not around.
But He was resurrected as the Jewish Scriptures said,
And offered all salvation by His blood He had shed.
I later heard the story, first told by Jewish men –
The Apostles, Paul, and all the church were Jewish, all of them.
But when the message got to me, the Jewish roots were cut!
Yeshua wept, because the door to heaven for Jews was shut!
The Jews now think of Jesus as a God who’s not for them –
The veil over their eyes has made their eyesight dim.
But we can make them jealous if we restore His Jewish identity,
Support the Jews and the Jewish nation; for them we must have affinity.
And we must know our history, horrible things the Church has done,
Identify with them in their pain, that’s how their hearts are won.
We must repent for atrocities done in the name of our Jewish King.
Forgive us, Lord, we did not know it was such an evil thing.
– Nancy Petrey ~ June 18, 2016
Most Christians are not aware of the anti-Semitic history of the Church. I recommend three resources: (1) Our Hands are Stained with Blood: the Tragic Story of the “Church” and the Jewish People, by Dr. Michael Brown. (2) How the Cross Became a Sword by Richard Booker (small booklet). (3) Why Christians Should Care About Their Jewish Roots by Nancy Petrey (40-page book). In praying for revival and preparing for the coming of the Lord, these are indispensable tools. I urge you to read one of them. You will be spellbound and shell-shocked! But at least you will be equipped for these end times.
PRAYER: Dear Father, cause us to weep over Your chosen people like Jesus did. Give us a heart of compassion to pray for their salvation. Cause us to be more grateful that Jesus came to us through the Jewish people and that our beloved Scriptures were penned and preserved by them. May we be moved to action on their behalf, speeding the day when Yeshua the Messiah will return to Jerusalem and set up His kingdom.