With the ascension of Jesus, the gift of the Spirit has arrived with blessings for all believers as promised to Abraham.

The “promise of the Father” is the gift of the Spirit, and Paul links it to the Abrahamic covenant. The promises of the Abrahamic covenant find their fulfillment in the new covenant inaugurated by Jesus. The bestowal of the Spirit on the church marks the commencement of the age of fulfillment, and “in Christ,” Gentile believers become full heirs of Abraham.

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The commencement of the “last days,” the time of fulfillment, began following the death, resurrection, and exaltation of Jesus.

When we hear the term “last days,” quite naturally, we assume it refers to the final short period of history just prior to the return of Jesus in glory. This is a logical assumption. Yet, the New Testament presents this period as the era of fulfillment that began with the death, resurrection, and exaltation of Jesus. In him, the “ends of the ages” have come upon the people of God.

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The promises to Abraham find their fulfillment in the New Covenant in Jesus and the New Creation.

The history of Israel includes multiple examples of idolatry and other sins that culminated in her expulsion from the land. But all was not lost. Yahweh foresaw her fall and, from the beginning, determined to restore her and institute a New Covenant, one that would include the nations of the earth. In the end, the New Creation would become the true inheritance of His people.

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SYNOPSIS – A people filled with the Spirit has been foundational to the redemptive plan of God from the very beginning

In his letter to the Galatians, Paul linked the “promise of the Spirit” to the “blessing of Abraham.” The Law pronounced a curse on anyone who did “not continue in all things written” in it, therefore Jesus came under its curse. But he did this to redeem men and women from the curse – that “the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith” – (Genesis 12:2-3, Galatians 3:10-14).

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SYNOPSIS – If circumcision is no longer required, there has been a fundamental change in how membership in the covenant community is determined

Circumcision is an obstacle to any claim that followers of Jesus must conform to the requirements of the Torah, a rite that was fundamental in the Abrahamic covenant for the identity of the covenant community, and mandatory in the Mosaic legislation for all male members. Thus, if circumcision is no longer required, then the jurisdiction of the Law has changed.

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