Christianity was supposed to be about becoming like Jesus. We went in the wrong direction.
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Chapter 11 - The Kingdom, Almost

One might see a window of opportunity for the nation of Israel to receive the king and kingdom from the announcement of the birth of Jesus by the angels until the destruction of the temple 70 years later. The peak of popular support was probably on Palm Sunday when Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey (which was also prophesied).

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. - Zechariah 9:9

A week later the religious leaders conspired to have him put to death (this might instill some cautious skepticism of religious leaders).

The Apostolic period from the ascension of Jesus until the destruction of the temple represents a potential of Israel to receive the kingdom. Paul wrote that it was his hope that the extension of salvation to the gentiles would provoke the nation to action by reason of jealousy.

I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. - Romans 11:11

Many try to pinpoint the moment Israel stopped and 'the church' started. Often Acts chapter two is cited as the moment. Sometimes a time at the middle or end of Acts is cited. However, it may be more accurate to consider an overlap period in which the possibility of the nation to receive the kingdom slowly becomes a fading possibility.

Some consider the letter to the Hebrews to be a last ditch attempt to persuade the nation of Israel to recognize that Jesus was their Messiah. However, even Paul seems less hopeful towards the end of his ministry.

For the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it. - Acts 28:27-28


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