Is Israel God’s Timepiece?
To Abraham, father of the nation of Israel, God made the following commitment: “The whole land of Canaan [future Israel], where you now reside as a foreigner, I will give as an everlasting possession to you and your descendants after you; and I will be their God.”1
A year or two ago Joy and I had the opportunity to visit Israel. To walk where Jesus and his disciples walked in Jerusalem, by the Temple wall, on the Mount of Olives, in the Garden of Gethsemane, the “Place of the Skull” where Jesus was crucified; the Jordan River where John baptized Jesus, plus sailing across the Sea of Galilee made God’s Word, the Bible, come alive.
What is even more amazing is not only Israel's return to the Promised Land and its restoration as a nation on May 14, 1948, but it’s survival against overwhelming odds. Ever since this time, including the six-day war in 1967, the surrounding Arab nations have been hell-bent on destroying the nation of Israel. Her survival is proof positive that God’s hand is on this tiny nation and that he will keep all the promises he made regarding her.
Prior to the time of Moses, God made the following covenant with Abraham, the father of the Israelites, saying: “Look around from where you are, to the north and south, to the east and west. All the land that you see I will give to you and your offspring forever.”2 God was referring to the land that was to become Israel.
Later, God said through Moses, some 3,600 years ago, that Israel would disobey him and be driven from their homeland and scattered among the nations.3
It took 900 years to happen, but it did! In 721 BC, northern Israel was taken captive by Assyria. In 586 BC, southern Israel was taken to Babylon. Seventy years later, a small remnant of 40,000 returned to rebuild Israel. But in AD 70, Jerusalem was again destroyed, this time by the Romans, and those who survived were scattered among the nations—where most Jews still live today.
A thousand years after Moses, God said through Ezekiel: "I will gather you (Israel) from all the countries and bring you back into your own land."4 God also predicted that Israel would once again "blossom as the rose,"5 and that he would "gather the scattered Israelites from the ends of the earth."6 Through Amos, God added, "I will restore the fortunes of my people Israel, and they shall rebuild the ruined cities and live in them."7
Every one of these promises made by God has been fulfilled in minutest detail, so we can be equally as certain that Israel will always survive because this land was given by God to the Israelites forever.
In fact, when Jesus returns to set up his millennial reign on earth, he will rule the world from Jerusalem.8 Immediately prior to this breath-taking event, will be the seven-year Great Tribulation when the Antichrist will arise and seek to control the entire globe. Three-and-a-half years into the Great Tribulation he, the Antichrist, will enter the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem claiming to be God.9
But, you say, there is no longer a Jewish Temple in Jerusalem and there can’t be because the Temple Mount is controlled by the Palestinians upon which they have built the Dome of the Rock. Not so fast, however, because when Joy and I were in Jerusalem, we visited the Temple Institute and learned firsthand that the Jewish leaders are right now making preparations for the re-building of their Temple. The plans are made, the priests are being trained to minister in it, the needed worship vessels are all being made and, knowing the Jews, you can be certain that somewhere “in the backwoods” they are cutting all of the needed stonework so the new Temple can be erected almost “overnight” when the time is ready. That could be a whole lot closer than all current-day political leaders in Washington and in the Arab nations—who are wanting to divide and/or conquer Israel—even consider.
When we see these things happening before our eyes, we can be assured that the setting of the stages for both the entrance of the Antichrist, and the return of the real Christ are accelerating. While only God knows the exact day of Chris’s return, the important thing is to be ready. For instance, if Jesus were to return today, would you be ready to go with him, to rule and reign with him, or would you be left behind—ultimately to face the Great White Judgment throne of God at the end time? To make sure that you are ready for Christ’s return please read the article, “How to Be Sure You’re a Real Christian” at: www.actsweb.org/christian.
Suggested prayer: “Dear God, thank you for your Word, the Bible, which provides all the information needed to assure us that you always keep your promises, and that Jesus will return to take all his true believers to be with him forever. Please help me to live for you today, and be certain that I am ready for Christ’s return. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully in Jesus’ name, amen.”
NOTE: For additional key information be sure to read Jerry Beavan’s insightful article on the place and critical importance of the nation of Israel in God’s plan at: http://tinyurl.com/n5dqsva. Jerry Beavan is known as the international architect of the Billy Graham worldwide crusades.
1. Genesis 17:8 (NIV). 2. Genesis 13:14-15 (NIV). 3. Leviticus 26:32-33. 4. Ezekiel 36:24 (NIV). 5. Isaiah 35:1. 6. Isaiah 11:12 (TLB). 7. Amos 9:14 (TLB/NLT). 8. Zephaniah 3:14-17. 9. 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4.