The New Covenant scriptures open with Yeshua’s genealogy from Abraham and David (Matthew 1:1-17). The emphasis is that Joseph, Yeshua’s “adoptive” father, was of the line of David; and therefore, legally Yeshua was born with rights to David’s throne.
In Acts 15, we find the discussion of elders and apostles about the role of the Gentiles in the kingdom. This council gathered together the senior spiritual authority of the first century community of faith, including Paul and Peter. In this council we find Jacob (James), the brother of Yeshua, presiding over the council (Acts 15:19).
Why was he recognized in such a high place of authority? Perhaps having grown up with Yeshua, he had a great depth of wisdom and integrity? Perhaps he was honored as Yeshua’s brother? Yet, I believe, there may have been two other reasons: one having to do with genealogy, the other with the local Jerusalem congregation.
Jacob (James) was born of Mary (Miriam) and Joseph. Therefore he was a direct descendant of David – and like Yeshua, he also had a legal right to David’s throne. The apostles may have recognized a covenant connection to Davidic, kingdom government within their senior council.
While Peter was given the “keys” of the kingdom (Matthew 16:19), and Paul became the lead apostle to take the gospel to the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8), Jacob served as the overseeing apostle of the local Jerusalem faith community, comprised primarily of Jewish believers “zealous for the Torah” (Acts 21:20).
While maintaining this connection both with David’s covenant and his capital city may have seemed irrelevant to the Church during the past 2,000 years of exile, it will have renewed significance as we approach the Second Coming of Yeshua.
Orthodox Jews pray 5 times daily to restore the “throne of David” in Jerusalem. This pertains to both the Jewish religion and the Israeli government. Yet it also has significance to the international Church and the Messianic remnant. The prayer “Blessed is He who comes”(Matthew 23:39) is a call for Yeshua to return and take up the throne of David (Isaiah 9:5-6).
God’s covenant with David is the legal mechanism which established divine, governmental authority on earth (II Samuel 7:13-16). In the Jerusalem council, there was recognition of spiritual authority going back to that covenant in order to maintain the hope that Yeshua would return one day to reign on earth.
As the genealogical connection to David’s covenant was necessary for Yeshua’s birth, so a similar connection may be important in preparing for the Second Coming. Some form of restored Messianic apostolic team or council in Jerusalem, with legitimate Jewish roots, could provide a vehicle for the international Church to come into right alignment, as we prepare to invite Yeshua to return and take up David’s throne.
Asher serves as president of Tikkun Global family of ministries and congregations, dedicated to the dual restoration of Israel and the Church. He is founder of the Revive Israel five-fold ministry team, and oversees both Ahavat Yeshua and Tiferet Yeshua congregations in Israel.
He and his wife Betty share a passion for personal prayer and devotion, local evangelism and discipleship in Hebrew, and unity of the Body of believers worldwide.
Asher was raised in a conservative Jewish home and holds degrees from Harvard University, Baltimore Hebrew College and Messiah Biblical Institute. He has authored numerous books, tracts and articles.