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The Missing Cross to Purity



TO THE JEWS

by Isaac Penington

Somewhat in the Love of GOD to the JEWS NATURAL, or SEED of ABRAHAM after the Flesh.

 

OH! the glory of your state outward, who were the people whom God once chose and loved, and manifested his power and presence among, above all people! Your land was the glory of all lands, to which God brought you out of Egypt by an outstretched arm, through a dreadful wilderness, in which you were tempted, tried, and exercised, and the succeeding generation fitted to enter into. Oh! what laws and statutes, and righteous judgments, did God give you, such as no nation besides you had! What a temple had you to appear before God in, and the ark of the covenant, and holy priests, kings and prophets! How near God was to you, to be inquired of by you; and how ready to hear your prayers, in all that you called upon him for! The eternal God was your refuge, and underneath were the everlasting arms (the Lord was your rock, and you were built upon him); and he did thrust out the enemy before you, and did say, Destroy. And when the arm of the Lord did destroy them before you, you did dwell in safety alone; and the Lord was a fountain of living waters to you, and his heavens did drop down fatness upon you. Happy were you, O Israel! who was like unto you, O people saved by the Lord, the shield of your help, and who was the sword of your excellence! Your enemies were found liars unto you, and you did tread upon their high places. It might have been still so with you, had you not been unmindful of the rock that begat you, and had you not forgotten God that formed you. For your glory would not have been taken from you, but swallowed up in a higher glory, in which you might have had the first and greatest share, had you not, by your almost constant rebellion and unbelief, provoked the Lord against you; not only often to afflict, but at last utterly to cast you off from being a people,* and to choose a people in your stead, who should bring forth better fruits to the Lord of the vineyard, than you in your day had done.

**The end of the Jewish Kingdom was in 70 A.D. Most of the Jews were massacred and the temple in Jerusalem was completely destroyed by the Roman Prince, Titus, in 70 AD; Titus, who later became emperor of Rome, was the son of the Emperor Vespasian. Josephus, a first century historian, wrote that 1.1 million Jews died and hundreds of thousands were forced out of the country and into exile and slavery.

In 135 A.D., the Roman Emperor Hadrian further destroyed Jerusalem. Cassius Dio, a second century historian, counted 580,000 Jews killed, 50 fortified towns and 985 villages destroyed, and all the remaining Jews exiled to countries throughout the Roman Empire and eventually scattered and re-scattered throughout the world. Thus, Israel ceased to exist; as was prophesied by Jesus: And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled, Luke 21:24.

Now that the state of Israel has be reconstituted, it appears the time of the Gentiles is approaching an end, when in Zechariah 12:10, the Lord said, ‘I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplication, and they shall look upon him whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for his son, his only son; and they shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his first born.’ And the time spoken by Isaiah in Isaiah 11:12: And he shall set up an ensign [the Messiah] for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.

Yet when your state was thus glorious, it was not a state of the truly substantial, lasting glory, but a shadowy state or representative thereof. Your day of glory was not the day of the Messiah, the day of everlasting light inwardly, in which the Lord alone is exalted inwardly in the hearts of all, in whom he breaks down all that is contrary to the light of his day. Your day was but the day of the outward shadows of the heavenly substance; but when that day (the day of the inward substance and glory) shined, your shadows or shadowy state was to flee away, and to be swallowed up in the pure substance and spiritual kingdom of the Messiah.

Your birth from Abraham after the flesh, was not the birth which was to inherit the promise in the kingdom of the Messiah; but there is a birth inwardly born of the Spirit, born after Abraham in his faith, who travels inwardly, as Abraham did outwardly, and seeks an inward country and city, whose builder and maker is God; to these the spiritual kingdom and promises belong.

Your circumcision was but the circumcision outward, the circumcision of the flesh. It was not the circumcision of the heart, which is the circumcision of the inward Jew. Indeed the scripture calls for a circumcision of the heart from you, because there was something near you, which would have so circumcised you, had you hearkened and given up to it. But you, as a people, were not so circumcised, but were a stiff-necked people, (as Moses and the prophets were still complaining of you), uncircumcised in heart and ears, resisting God's Spirit both in your own hearts and in the prophets, until the Lord was provoked to take away both vision and prophet from you.

The Egypt in which your fathers were in bondage, and Pharaoh who oppressed them, was but the Egypt outward, and Pharaoh outward. There is an inward Egypt, in which the spiritual seed, the inward man, the soul is in bondage; and there is a spiritual Pharaoh, that oppresses the spiritual seed, in spiritual Egypt; and there is a stretching out the arm of the Almighty inwardly, to break the strength of the inward Pharaoh, to pierce Leviathan the crooked serpent, and to deliver the soul from under his captivity.

The wilderness also your fathers were led through, was only the outward wilderness, where they were tempted and tried by the Lord many ways, that he might do them good in the latter end. But the inward Israel, after they are led out of the inward Egypt, are tried in the inward wilderness, where they are judged after the flesh, and that wasted in them, which is not to enter into and inherit the good land, where they are tried in the furnace of affliction, and their filth purged away by the spirit of judgment and burning; that the righteous nation, which has  received the holy inward law, and keeps the truth, may enter into the good land, city, and kingdom of the Messiah, and inherit the blessed promises of life and salvation there.

Moses, your great prophet, was a type of the great, lasting, standing prophet, whom God would raise up like unto Moses, who was to give his inward law as Moses did the outward, and to lead all the spiritual Israel as Moses did the outward Israel; and his word was to be heard and stand in all things whatsoever he shall say unto his people; and whoever will not hear and obey this prophet, shall be cut off from among the holy, spiritual, and inwardly-living people.

Joshua, who succeeded Moses, led but into the figurative rest. He was but a figure of him that inwardly leads into the inward and spiritual rest; which the true Jews, which are inwardly created and formed by God, and made a willing people, in the day of his power, enter into.

The pillar of cloud, and pillar of fire in the wilderness, were but figures of the spiritual pillar of cloud and fire, by which the spiritual Israel are led and defended in the glorious gospel-day of God's Spirit and power. Read Isaiah 4 which speaks of the gospel-day, and the pillar and cloud of fire to be created therein, and of the defense which is to be on all the inward and spiritual glory.

The land of Canaan, the outward good and kingdom of Israel, was but a figure of the inward land, and kingdom of the inward Israel, in the days of the Messiah. This is the land of Judah in which the song is sung, because of the inward strong city where God appoints salvation for walls and bulwarks, which the righteous nation that keeps the truth, enter into. Isaiah 36.

Their outward kings in that land, and particularly David, were but types of the spiritual king, the spiritual David, whom God will raise up to the spiritual people, who should seek the Lord their God, and David their king; who shall be their spiritual shepherd and ruler, whom God has  appointed to feed them in the integrity of his heart, and to guide them by the skillfulness of his hands, who is King of righteousness and peace inwardly, and who ministers righteousness and peace to the sheep and lambs of his pastures.

Their outward priests (even their high-priests) were but a representation of the great high-priest of God, who was to be a priest for ever, after the order of Melchizedeck, Psa. 110:4.

Their outward covenant, (made with them from the outward mount Sinai, upon the giving of the law, and holy statutes and ordinances, by which they were to live and enjoy God in their outward state), was but a shadow of the inward and spiritual covenant: the new and everlasting covenant, which God makes with his inward and spiritual people in the latter days.

Their outward law, as written and engraved in tables of stone, was but a shadow of the inward law, which God puts into the children of the new covenant, insomuch that they need not go outwardly to learn the knowledge of God, or his will or law; but the inward Israel find it inwardly written within. There the isles who wait for the law of the Spirit of life, for the law of the Messiah, receive the ministration of the law, (in the Spirit and power of the Messiah), for which they wait.

Their outward mount Zion, on which the outward temple was built by Solomon, that wise king, that righteous king, that peaceable king, was a figure of the inward mountain, whereupon the inward house is built in the days of the gospel, in the days of the Messiah; and to this mountain are the spiritual people to come up and worship. This is the Zion and Jerusalem (even inward and spiritual) from which the law and word of the Lord go forth in the days of the Messiah; and the spiritual house of Jacob combine or agree together to walk in the light of the Lord, who sends forth his light and truth, and leads them to his holy hill, and to his tabernacles.

Their outward tabernacle and temple, sanctified by God for him to dwell and appear in, was a shadow of God's inward dwelling-place in man; I will tabernacle in them. God dwells not in houses or temples made with hands; that is not the place of his rest, as said the prophet Isaiah: "but the high and lofty One that inhabits eternity, whose throne is in heaven, and the earth his footstool, he dwells also with him that is of an humble and contrite spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the spirit of the contrite ones."

Their outward sabbaths were not the lasting Sabbath or rest of the gospel, but given them for a sign; but the day of redemption from sin, the day of resting from sin, the day of ceasing from the works of the flesh, the day in which God is all, and does all by his Spirit and power inwardly, and in which he alone is exalted. This is the day of rest, which the Lord has  made for the spiritual Israel, and in which they are glad and rejoice.

So their incense and sacrifices were not the lasting incense and sacrifices, but shadows thereof. The prayers of the saints, when God pours out the spirit of prayer and supplication upon them, and they pray to him therein, that is the incense. Let my prayer be directed before you as incense, and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice. And this was the incense and pure offering, which in every place was to be offered up to God's name among the Gentiles, when his name should be great among them, as Malachi foretells. And what said David of old, when God's Spirit and the holy vision was upon him? Sacrifice and offering you did not desire; you have opened my ears: burnt-offering and sin-offering you have not required. Then said I, lo I come; in the volume of the book it is written of me: I delight to do your will, O my God; yes, your law is in the midst of my bowels. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit (rent your hearts, and not your garments, and turn to the Lord your God); a broken and a contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. The offering praise to God from a sincere heart, and the ordering of the conversation aright, these are the sacrifices well-pleasing to God; for sacrifices were not the thing which God mainly required of outward Israel, but this, OBEY MY VOICE: and obedience is more acceptable than all other sacrifices, and to heed [his voice] than the fat of the choicest rams.

Besides, those outward sacrifices could not remove or take away sin from the conscience, but he that came to do the will, and to put an end to those sacrifices and oblations, which were but outward and imperfect; he both washes and takes away sins from within, and also bring in everlasting righteousness, where his light shines, and his pure life springs inwardly in the heart.

And this is the substance of all the shadows, even the light eternal, the word eternal, the Son of the living God, (who is light as the Father is light) the word near in the mouth and heart, the word of the new covenant; that which Moses directed your Fathers to, Deut 30, and by which the Lord speaks, and has  spoken throughout the world, Psa147:15, and teaches every man that hearkens to his voice, to do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with his God, as it is expressed by the prophet Micah.

Now to you Jews, of the outward line of Abraham, (whose return to the Lord my soul most earnestly desires after, and for which I have most vehemently and forcefully prayed to the Lord), are some few weighty queries upon my heart:

Query 1. How did David come to pant so after the living God, like the hart or hind pants after a brook of water? Was it not from the quickening virtue of this inward word, which Moses the man of God had directed the mind to? Read Psa 119, and feel how he breathed for quickenings from this word, on which all depends. If you come to experience this word, and the quickening virtue of it, and follow the Lord on it, you will soon come to know the day of the Messiah, and the glory of his kingdom, which is not outward, transitory, and of a perishing nature; but inward, spiritual, and everlasting (as David well knew, and spoke sensibly of, Psa 145 and elsewhere.)

Query 2. What are the waters which every thirsty soul is invited to? Are they not the waters of the Messiah? Are they not waters that flow out of the wells of salvation? Isaiah 12. Do not the spiritual Israelites draw spiritual water out of the wells of the Saviour in the days of the Messiah? What is it to come to these waters? Oh! If only you experientially knew! But this I will tell you, from true and certain experience, that if you come to take notice of this word of life, which God has placed near in your mouths and hearts, to separate between the evil words and evil thoughts of the enemy's begetting and bringing forth, and the good words and good thoughts of God's begetting and bringing forth; and if you incline your ear to it, and come from that which it reproves in you, and draws you from to itself; then your souls shall soon come to live. He that gives you life, will make an everlasting covenant with you, even the sure mercies of David; but you must still mind him as a witness, and leader, and commander, inwardly in your hearts, that you may be preserved in the covenant, and enjoy the blessings of it; see Isaiah 55.

Query 3. Did not the Messiah come at the set time, at the time set by the Holy Spirit of prophecy? Did he not come in the prepared body to do the will? Did he not do the will? And after his obedience to his Father, was he not cut off, though not for himself? And after his cutting off, were not you made desolate? Why were you made desolate? Why did such a stroke come upon you [Israel] as never before? Oh! consider it! Read Dan 9:24 to the end of the chapter, and let him who reads understand.

*For the complete explanation of the Messiah's set time, click here. Christ's death, which was the everlasting sacrifice. Therefore, the sacrifice in the temple of Jerusalem ceased to have validity in God's eyes. Israel was shortly thereafter destroyed by several wars. Most of the Jews were massacred and the temple in Jerusalem was completely destroyed by the Roman Prince, Titus, in 70 AD. All the Jews were exiled by the Roman Emperor Hadrian in 135 AD.

Query 4. What was that curse, and on whom did it light? “Let their table become a snare to them,” Psa 69. Was it not on those that gave gall and vinegar to the Messiah to drink, whom David was a figure of, and spoke in Spirit concerning? Whose eyes are always darkened? Does not the veil lie still on your whole nation? Do you know the inward mountain, where the veil or face of the covering is destroyed? In the inward day and light of the Messiah, it is destroyed. There, what veils the noble eye of the mind, is known; and also that which destroys and removes it is known. To what purpose is it for you to read Moses and the prophets, when the veil is so upon you, that you cannot see what is to be abolished, and is abolished by the dawning of the glorious day of the Messiah, and what is to remain and never to be abolished? There is a Jew, there is a circumcision, there is a Sabbath, there is a rest, ... for the inward and spiritual people, which is to remain, and never to be abolished.

Query 5. Who were those that God would hide his face from, and see what their end should be, because they were a disobedient generation, children in whom was no faith? Who were they that moved God to jealousy, and provoked him to anger? And what was the people and foolish nation he would provoke them to jealousy and anger with? Deut 32. Was it not the spiritual, the holy nation inwardly, the true Jews, whom God took from among the Gentiles, whom he appeared among, and was a God and a Father to, when he cast off and forsook the Jews outward, and left them to be a desolation?

Query 6. Who are those that shall be hungry when God's servants shall eat; and thirsty, when God's servants shall drink; and ashamed, when his servants shall rejoice? Are not your souls hungry and parched for lack of the spiritual sustenance, with which the living God satisfies his servants, making a feast of fat things to them on his inward holy mountain? And are not you ashamed of your expectations of the Messiah, while the servants of the Lord rejoice in him, their Prince and Saviour, and witness him daily a leader and commander to them? What is the people whom the Lord has  slain and made desolate? (Are not you a slain people to God, alienated from his life, Spirit, and power, dead in your literal notions and observations?) And what are the servants of the Lord, whom the Lord has  called by another name, even a name that you never knew? see Isaiah 65. And consider, how all your day God spread out his hand to you, and you were rebellious, and would not hear; and now night has come upon you, and your visitation, as such a people, is and has  been long ended.

Query 7. Did not God signify by the prophet Malachi, that he had no pleasure in you, nor would accept an offering at your hand? Did not he also signify the choosing of the Gentiles in your place; that the called among the Gentiles should be his people; and his name which you had profaned, should be great among them, and their incense and pure offering in every place be accepted, even from the rising of the sun to the going down of the same? Read Mal 1.

Query 8. Now that the inward people, and the inward covenant, the new covenant, are brought forth, shall you forever be owned or regarded as an outward people, according to your outward covenant any more? Will not all such expectations fail you forever? You have looked from generation to generation for the coming and appearing of the Messiah outwardly, after an outward manner; but his coming and appearance is inward; and he sets up his kingdom, his everlasting kingdom in his saints, and in their hearts he rules inwardly; and the Messiah, the seed of the woman, bruises the head of the serpent there. Oh! That you knew the substance! Oh! That you knew the word of life in the heart, and were turned to it, and daily faithful and obedient! That you might feel it crushing and dashing the power of sin and corruption in your hearts! This is the consolation, hope, and joy of the inward and spiritual Israel! Oh! that you might be made partakers of it; and that your long outward captivity and desolation might at length end in inward freedom and redemption! Amen.

Isaac Penington

Early Quakers Writings Addressed to to the Jews on this Site are as follows:

Title (Click to read)
Author
A Mirror for the Jews George Fox
A Visitation to the Jews George Fox
A Declaration to the Jews George Fox
To the Jewish and Hebrew Nation Margaret Fox
Hundreds of Old Testament Prophecies Fulfilled by Christ  

 

 

This web site's purpose is to show how to become
free from sin
by benefiting from the changing power of God through the cross,
which leads to union with God in his Kingdom.

 


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