The World Doesn't Get It!

It was on June 7th, 1967, during the famed six-day war in the Middle East, the Israeli army drove the Jordanian army out of the Old City of Jerusalem, unifying God’s Holy City as part of the Jewish nation for the first time in two-thousand years. 
 This event, celebrated as Yom Yerushalayim or Jerusalem Day, was observed recently in Israel on May 29th. That’s because Israel follows the Hebrew calendar which uses a different system, causing a fluctuation of dates compared to the standard Gregorian calendar. 
 Unfortunately, many Arab nations, and much of the world, see this day of celebration as a provocation. Of course! They don’t believe the Bible and could care less about the Lord’s plans for Jerusalem.
 Curiously, these same critics don’t acknowledge the constant attacks against Israel, the missiles, firebombs, rocks, disruptions of daily life, and repeated threats, which have resulted in many lives lost, as provocations. 
 Of course the Lord knew all this back in King David’s day when the Ark of the Covenant, as described in 2 Samuel 6, was brought into the city of Jerusalem. Verses 15 & 16, “So David and all the house of Israel brought up the Ark of the Lord with shouting and with the sound of the trumpet. Now as the Ark of the Lord came into the City of David . . .”
 We believe it was at that point, the placement of the Ark, Jerusalem became the Holy City. That is embellished by numerous references in the Tenakh, including Psalm 122:6, “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: may they prosper who love you.”
 But if the world doesn’t get Jerusalem’s significance through the ages based on the Bible, no doubt it even more doesn’t recognize the return of our Messiah, and the surrounding parameters.  In Matthew 23:37-39, Yeshua explains He is coming back to Jerusalem, but must be met with Jewish believers who will honor Him as Messiah. In verse 39, He makes it clear, “For I say to you, you shall see Me no more till you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’” 
 Geo-political analysis of Israel’s right to exist and right to include all of Jerusalem, will fall away to nothing when He returns to the Holy City.      

Not Just For Israel's Sake

Some folks have a problem supporting Israel because of the current spiritual condition in the nation. While inroads for faith in Messiah are being made, the vast majority of the people are not walking with the Lord. Making matters worse, the culture is very liberal, openly embracing abortion, homosexuality and the like.

But look how the Lord addressed that issue in Ezekiel 36. He both recognized the sinful nature of His chosen, and reiterated His covenant promise of the land. In verse 22, “Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God: I do not do this for your sake, O house of Israel, but for My holy name’s sake, which you have profaned among the nations wherever you went.’”

God was specifying the significance of His covenant promise is not based on who received it, but the responsibility of Him who gave it. Therefore, the fulfillment of that covenant is a reflection of the glory of our Father in Heaven, not dependent on the performance of human beings. 

Now does the Lord want Israel to be righteous . . . of course! In fact, continuing in the same passage of Ezekiel, He makes that prediction. Notice how, as in many other prophetic writings in the Tanakh, He says Israel will come back to their land.

Picking up at verse 24, “For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land. Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.”

We believe these words point directly to a day of revival in Israel; to the time when the Jewish people will come to recognize their sin and their need for a Savior. In that day, Yeshua will be known in their hearts. 

As God proclaimed in verses 27 & 28, “I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them. Then you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; you shall be My people, and I will be your God.”

Furthermore, it has been well documented that in the years before the repatriation of Jewish people, Israel, again as prophetically written in the Hebrew Scriptures, was somewhat of a wasteland.

Among others, Israel Zangwill, a noted Jewish British novelist and playwright, described the territory in the late 1800's as “a wilderness” and a land that had “gone to ruin.”  But the Lord spoke through Ezekiel 36:34-36, “The desolate land shall be tilled instead of lying desolate in the sight of all who pass by. So they will say, ‘This land that was desolate has become like the garden of Eden; and the wasted, desolate, and ruined cities are now fortified and inhabited.’ Then the nations which are left all around you shall know that I, the Lord, have rebuilt the ruined places and planted what was desolate. I, the Lord, have spoken it, and I will do it.”

And He did! Modern day Israel is a living proof of God’s reclamation of a barren land.

So we are to give glory to the Lord God Almighty for the nation of Israel. He is completing the work He promised. But make no mistake about it, when Israel experiences revival, proclaiming Jesus as Messiah, it’s not just for the Jewish nation’s sake, but indeed for the glory of God.

As He declared in Ezekiel 36:23, “And I will sanctify My great name . . . and the nations shall know that I am the Lord,” says the Lord God, “when I am hallowed in you before their eyes.”