In my last post I addressed what Christ says about the nations. I wrote that nations were established as a deterrent to the excesses of a global government to prevent any such government from becoming a global police state. In that post I mentioned that nations are defined by language, familial relations (ethnicity), and geography.
The Bible, however, addresses the existence of a nation that is unlike any other nation that has ever existed. This nation is a nation that already exists according to the Scripture. The Bible addresses the Church of Jesus Christ as a nation. In the fact, the very Greek word for church drips with political implication. The word Ekklesia (ἐκκλησία) means assembly and was used to denote any kind of assembly. It was used in the contemporary Greek speaking culture to refer to legally constituted assemblies. In Acts 19 (verses 32, 39, 41) this word is used precisely this way. If Koine Greek were the official of the United States of America, we would refer to a session of Congress, state legislature, or city council as an ekklesia. The church is a called out political assembly.
On several occasion the Greek word translated nation is used in reference to the church. In Matthew 21:33-45, we are instructed by parable that the Church was going to assume the execution of the Kingdom promises given to Israel and specifically render judgment against the religious leaders who rejected Christ. The loss of Israel’s birthright to the Kingdom of God would be temporary as she would be reunited with the church someday and assume the birthright once again as a composite entity with the church (Ephesians 2:11-22).
Hear another parable: There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country: And when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it. And the husbandmen took his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another. Again, he sent other servants more than the first: and they did unto them likewise. But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son. But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance. And they caught him, and cast him out of the vineyard, and slew him. When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh, what will he do unto those husbandmen? They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons. Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes? Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them.
This parable speaks of the shift in the activity of the Kingdom of God from Israel to the Church. The Church is this nation. In 1 Peter where we read of the building of the church made of living stones that is built on Christ as the corner stone, the church is described as a holy nation.
Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed. But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
Not only is the church described as a holy nation, but we are described as kings.
And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
The Church, as a nation, is unique among the nations. She is borderless and ethnically agnostic, being composed of people of all nations, languages, and tribes. Whereas other nations were birthed naturally through the power of the flesh, she was birthed supernaturally through the power of the Spirit. Because she is birthed supernaturally, her police power is rather supernatural than natural. The church does not prevail by using the hands of the flesh to exercise coercion to set her up her version of world government. This sets her apart from the many “isms” that seek to take over the world: Secular Humanism, Communism, Islamism, Fascism, Homofascism are just a few examples of movements that seek to strengthen the hand of the state and use its carnal power and physical force to compel obedience to the requirements of their big story.
The Church uses spiritual power, private property rights, and fulfillment of Israelite Covenants to advance the Kingdom. The 25th chapter of Matthew lays out this three fold application of the police power of the church. Verses 1-13 are the parable of the Ten Virgins. Ten virgins prepare to meet the bridegroom at night with lamps. Five of them are wise enough to take extra oil with them. The five foolish ones do not. The oil symbolizes the Holy Spirit and the Lamps the preaching of the Word of God. The extra oil symbolizes the individual persons relationship to God. Only those who have cultivated their own personal relationship with God will be ready to meet Christ at His Coming. Verse 14-30 contains the second parable, called the Parable of the Talents, described a master distributing his private property to His servants. The servants then exercise the delegated private property rights in the marketplace. The Master is Christ, but neither his delegation nor His servants exercise of it involves the use of His divine police power but of private property rights. Verse 31-46 contains the third and last section which describes the scene at the Final Judgment where people are separated between the sheep and goats and judged on whether they use their private property rights to help the vulnerable. At this time all Israel is saved and baptized in Christ, the merger between the Church and Israel is complete, and Christ has already ruled the earth for 1000 years from His throne in Jerusalem, Israel.