In Turn to HIM, I wrote that the parable given by Yeshua of the prodigal son could be explained thusly:
The Jewish people are the prodigal son while the Gentile church are the son who stayed home.
I now believe this is in error. (I will hopefully correct this in the manuscript at some point but for now it will need to suffice that I correct this error here on the blog.)
I now believe that the parable deals with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. That is, the lost sheep of the house of Israel (who were dispersed and divorced by the LORD due to their unfaithfulness) are the prodigal son, while the house of Judah are represented by the son who stayed home.
Gentiles are among the lost sheep as the house of Israel were dispersed among them (and many lost their identity as Israelites), but they are not the focus of the parable. This seems completely obvious to me now and it's amazing to me that I got it so badly wrong for so long.
What's more, Yeshua tells us directly in Matthew 15:
"I was only sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel."
In addition, Yeshua instructs his disciples in Matthew 10:
"Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel."
Seems pretty obvious when you really think about it, no?
And this leads to a further conclusion, and an important one. If anyone should still need good reason not to proselytize-especially to members of the house of Judah-this is it. Yeshua didn't come for them but to bring the lost sheep back. Later, the house of Judah and the house of Israel will be reunited-and this is already beginning. But the message and purpose of Yeshua's coming is for the lost sheep of the house of Israel-those who were dispersed. He tells us so!
So don't worry if the house of Judah rejects Yeshua's mission because it makes perfect sense that they might reject Yeshua's mission. Not only for the reason that the misguided Christian church (which Yeshua never came to setup) persecuted Jews throughout history, nor only for the reason that they have so much of Judaism so wrong, but for the reason that His mission wasn't for them to begin with. And, this isn't to say that all of the house of Judah do reject Yeshua's mission or deny its validity, it's just to say that it's not a big deal if the house of Judah does.
The house of Judah and the house of Israel have suffered each from adding to Scripture and taking away from Scripture. Judah added more (on the whole) and Israel took away more (on the whole). Examine the parable of the prodigal son and you will see how this was all revealed by Yeshua.
Blessed is He who comes in the Name of the LORD.
יהוה הוא ישועה