In the Old Testament the birthright belonged to the firstborn son of a family. According to Exo. 4:22, Israel is God’s firstborn son, and for many centuries the people of Israel enjoyed the birthright.
But when the Lord Jesus came, Israel lost the birthright due to their unbelief, and the birthright was shifted from Israel to the church. Now publicans, sinners, and Gentiles who believe into the Lord Jesus receive the birthright. This is a very important matter to realize and see in the New Testament.
God promised that Messiah would come and save His people Israel, but when the Lord Jesus came as Messiah, they didn’t believe in Him but rather they rejected Him.
But the sinners who believe into the Lord Jesus are the second son (see Luke 15) who repent and return to the Father, and these saved sinners enjoy the fattened calf (the all-inclusive Christ as the good land) and are restored in the Father’s house full of enjoyment.
Now we as the genuine believers in Christ are together the church of the firstborn (Heb. 12:23), and we enjoy the birthright today.
In the New Testament age we are in the age of jubilee, the age of returning to our rightful possession (God Himself) with joy and jubilation! The Lord Jesus came to proclaim the year of jubilee, the acceptable year of the Lord (Luke 4:16-19), and whoever repents and believes into the Lord is saved and is restored to the enjoyment of God.
In the Old Testament the year of jubilee was only once every 50 years, but in the New Testament the jubilee lasts the entire church age! Today God doesn’t condemn us for our poverty, bondage, or sins, but He saves us, restores us, and brings us back to Himself as our enjoyment when we repent and believe into Him!
Hallelujah, today is the acceptable year of the Lord! Today we are in the age of jubilee, the age in which we are being continually released from any bondage, we are being brought to the freedom of the glory of the children of God, and we are being restored to God as our rightful possession! Praise the Lord!
The Shifting of the Birthright from Israel to the Church
When God sent Moses to Pharaoh to ask him to let His people go, He said, “Israel is My son, My firstborn” (Exo. 4:22). In God’s eyes the people of Israel was not just His people but His firstborn son, the one who enjoys the birthright.
The people of Israel was the only people on earth who for centuries could enjoy God, be priests to God, and reign with God and for God on earth.
In the beginning of the Lord’s ministry on earth, He considered the people of Israel as the first son and the sinners and tax collectors as the second son (see Luke 15). But because of the unbelief of the people of Israel, they lost the birthright (see Matt. 21:32; Rom. 11:20).
If we read Luke 15 we see that the Lord likened the leaders of Judaism (the priests, Pharisees, Sadducees, etc) to the firstborn, and He likened the tax collectors and sinners to the second son; but in Matthew 21:18-31 the Lord likened them in the opposite order.
This means that, because of the unbelief of the people of Israel, even though they were the firstborn son in God’s eyes, the birthright was shifted to the church, which was composed of the repentant and believing sinners, tax collectors, and publicans.
This is very significant. We are Gentiles and sinners; we are not qualified to have the birthright, but by repenting and believing into Christ as the Savior and the Son of God, we receive the birthright!
The church is composed mainly of repentant and believing sinners, and the Bible calls the church as, the church of the firstborn (Heb. 12:23). Today in the New Testament age the birthright was shifted from the people of Israel to the church, and whoever repents and believes into the Lord Jesus is part of the church and has the full right to enjoy God, be a priest to God, and be a co-king with Christ.
Today we, the repentant and believing sinners, have the right to enjoy Christ to the fullest extent! We have the right to contact God and bring men before God as priests to God. We have the right to be co-kings with Christ by letting Him rule and reign within us.
However, we need to be warned: there’s the possibility of losing the birthright (Heb. 12:16-17). So we should realize that the church has the birthright, and we should treasure, enjoy, and exercise our birthright in the church age today!
Thank You Lord for giving us, the repentant and believing sinners, the right to enjoy God, be priests to God, and be co-kings with Christ! We treasure our birthright. Lord, we exercise our spirit to repent, confess our sins, and believe into You to be organically joined to You and enjoy You as the reality of the good land. Bring us into the full enjoyment of Christ. We come to You to be the priests of God and rule together with Christ. Hallelujah, we as the church people have the birthright!
Being Recovered to our Birthright in the New Testament Jubilee
Today in the church age we have been recovered to Christ as the tree of life and as the good land, the allotted portion of the saints in the light (Col. 1:12).
Because of the unbelief of the people of Israel, the birthright was lost; when Christ came, He brought in the year of jubilee (Luke 4:16-19). Now we, the lost sinners, can return to God as our rightful possession.
Man was created for God, and God is for man. Our possession is God Himself, whom we lost through Adam’s fall. But in the church age we are in the year of jubilee, the year of glorious emancipation, deliverance, return, and release!
By believing into the Lord Jesus we have been released from bondage! Once we were captives in the bondage of sins, but through repenting and believing into Christ we were released from slavery and we were brought back to the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
Today God is our enjoyment: God in Christ is the all-inclusive good land for us to enjoy, and this Christ is our allotted portion in the light, the common portion of the saints. We can partake of Christ, enjoy Him, be filled and saturated with Him, and take possession of Him as the good land.
We are being continually freed from any bondage so that we may be the free children of God.
Also, we are being restored to our original condition: we are in front of the tree of life in our spirit, being free and able to choose to partake of God as life or choose the tree of knowledge.
In the church age today we are in the year of jubilee, and God is not condemning us anymore; rather, He is receiving us to Himself, He is freeing us, releasing us, delivering us, and bringing us into the enjoyment of Christ (1 Cor. 1:30).
Our Jesus Christ is the Jubilee-Jesus, the sin-releasing, enjoyment-giving, and freedom-proclaiming One in our spirit!
We as the prodigal son return to the Father’s house not to be “one of His slaves” but to enjoy Christ as the fattened calf, be freed from any bondage, and enter into the full enjoyment of God with all the saints.
Hallelujah for our Jubilee-Jesus who has released us from bondage and is constantly bringing us into the enjoyment of Christ as the good land! Lord, keep us in the enjoyment of our allotted portion with the saints in the light. Keep us enjoying You and coming to You to be released from any bondage and be restored to our original condition! Thank You, Lord Jesus, for coming to proclaim the year of jubilee. You are now bringing us fully into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. We love You and we praise You, our Jubilee-Jesus!
Read this blog post in Spanish via, En el jubileo neotestamentario la primogenitura es transferida de Israel a la iglesia.
References and Hymns on this Topic
- Inspiration: the Word of God, my Christian experience, bro. Ron Kangas’ sharing in the message for this week, and portions from, Life-Study of Luke (msgs. 12, 20-21), as quoted in, the Holy Word for Morning Revival on, Crystallization-Study of Genesis (3), week 5 / msg 5, The Birthright (you can buy this morning revival book here).
- Picture source (the first picture) with some more ministry portions – Christian Pictures blog.
- Hymns on this topic:
# Come, all ye saints, and sing with me. / His love and joy have set me free. / The greatest Savior ever, He! / Come praise and sing in Jubilee! / He changed my life with one simple call. / He gained my heart to love Him o’er all. / And now I will praise Him, and tell the whole world. / I love my Jesus forevermore! (Song on Jubilee)
# Jesus, Jesus our Redeemer / Has become our Jubilee, / Sent to proclaim the release / Of all held in captivity. / To the blind recovered sight— / The release of all oppressed. / To proclaim the year of the Lord, / Hallelujah Jubilee. (Song on Jesus our Jubilee)
# What a Christ we have, the all-inclusive One, / Our allotted portion, set apart in light. / In the kingdom of the Son of God, the Son of God’s love, / Here He rules us in the light of His love. (Song on Enjoying Christ)
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