Thursday, September 6, 2012
Israel: The Miracle
"Indeed, he [God] who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep."1
If you were to ask me what I thought might be the number one evidence for the validity of God's Word, the Bible, I would answer that question in one word by saying, "Israel."
In fact, the nation of Israel is one of the clearest evidences for the validity of God's Word. Its history is a continual story of biblical prophecy being fulfilled. For instance, some fifteen hundred years B.C., God said through Moses that Israel would turn from him and be driven by enemies from their homeland. God said, "I will bring the land into desolation … I will scatter you among the nations … your land shall be desolate, and your cities waste."2
The result? In 721 B.C., the ten northern tribes of Israel were taken into captivity by Assyria, and in 586 B.C. the two southern tribes were taken captive by Babylon. Seventy years later a small remnant of 40,000 Jews returned to Israel while the rest were scattered throughout the world. In A.D.70 Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans, and the remnant of Israelites was dispersed among the nations. Israel then became desolate as predicted 1,600 years before.
God's word also stated that the nation of Israel would be restored, saying, "Neither will I destroy them utterly."3 "For I will take you from among the nations, and gather you out of all countries and will bring you into your own land."4 "I will restore the fortunes of my people Israel, and they shall rebuild the ruined cities and live in them again,"5 and the nation "will blossom as the rose."6 The beginning of these prophecies being fulfilled was on May 14, 1948 when Israel once again became a nation.
The people of Israel have survived heinous atrocities committed against them by the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Greeks, the Romans, Hitler and others. And even today there are surrounding nations who want to "wipe Israel off the map." Israel's repeated survival against overwhelming odds and the rebuilding of their nation—which is still taking place at this time, twenty-five hundred years after God said that it would happen—is irrefutable evidence of the validity of the Bible.
But God has not finished with the nation of Israel by any means. According to the Bible the climax of world history as we know it will be when the nations of the world, headed by the Antichrist (Satan's emissary), will unite to come against Israel in an attempt to destroy her forever.7 This war, the like of which the world has never before seen, is known as Armageddon. At this point Jesus Christ will return to earth from Heaven, will rescue Israel and totally destroy all opposing armies. Christ will then set up his Kingdom and rule and reign on earth from Jerusalem for a thousand years8—after which he will create a new earth and a new heaven.9
Keep an eye on Israel. This tiny nation is without doubt—in God's plan—the center stage for the world's final battle between good and evil. Thus, the more we see nations uniting to oppose Israel, the more we need to realize that the setting of the stage for the entrance of the Antichrist is accelerating. At the same time the setting of the stage for the second coming of Jesus Christ will also be accelerating.
Of these yet unfulfilled biblical prophecies regarding Israel, we can be just as certain that they will be fulfilled in minutest detail just as all prior prophecies regarding Israel have been fulfilled in minutest detail.
The important issue for you and me today is that we are ready for these end-time events and especially for the return of Jesus Christ to earth. You will not want to be left behind. To make sure you are ready, be sure to 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, that informs mankind regarding the ultimate defeat of Israel's enemies and assures us of the return of Jesus Christ to earth to end forever the rule of evil over mankind, and to set up your eternal kingdom. Thank you, too, for your great gift of salvation so that all who trust in you and accept your forgiveness will be delivered from the coming evil and spend forever with you in eternity. Please help me to be absolutely certain that I am ready for the day of your return. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name."
Note: Again, if you are not absolutely certain that you are ready for Christ's return, be sure to read the article, "How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian" at: www.actsweb.org/christian.
1. Psalm 121:4 (NIV).
2. Leviticus 26:32-33.
3. Leviticus 26:44.
4. Ezekiel 36:24.
5. Amos 9:14 (TLB) (NLT).
6. Isaiah 35:1.
7. Revelation 16:12-16.
8. Revelation 20:1-6.
9. Revelation 21:1-3.