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BULLETIN ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTY SEVEN
wedding performances some 1000 years apart
are scarcely integral or unitary
also esp. Bulletins 113,
in this recent wrap-up concerning Israel
In times past, before 1948, 1967, 1973, the Gulf Wars 1980's Israeli declaration of Jerusalem as their eternal capital, it was not as completely obvious, if you follow what is written in the Bible, as it now is. It was only with such things as these that it was clear that the almost innumerable biblical references to the closeness of the returning Christ to this basic event was 'near', to use His own word for it (as in Luke 21:24).
The massive return from North, South, East and West of the Jewish people, precisely as foreseen in Romans 11, Jeremiah 31 and 33, Ezekiel 36-37, Isaiah 49, 66, has already been exegeted in detail and often; and accompanying this in its tableaux soon comes almost as part of it, but impending with it, the rule of the Messiah in Jerusalem. There is no possibility, now that the prophecies on this point are unsealed (cf. Daniel, which this concept was employed), and events have excluded any other interpretation of the repetitive material in this link in the word of the Lord.
Of there was evidence enough in Romans 11, before these relatively recent events. The Jewish nation was punished and the penalty included the cutting out (cg. Micah 5:;1-4) from the tree of life where they had been the missionary exhibit. The olive tree, in the imagery, instead of now being their habitat and specialty site, became for a time something with another branch grafted in and they with woe taken out... of their own olive tree. This led to specialisation now in the Gentile arena, with their grafted in branch.
But Paul is urgent in seeking perspective as Romans 11 proceeds, and indeed even in 11:12-15,19-24. It is by only ignorance, the prophet announces, that people may not realise that the Jews' national blindness is only an episode, and it will be reversed. Does not Isaiah 59 teach that the Redeemer-Deliverer will come to Zion, with a vast turning away of ungodliness from Israel. Do not then be high-minded: they went out because of unbelief, and so will you who replace them, and for the same reason. But no!
They are coming back. They remain just as significant, their restoration sure and awaiting release, as the Gentiles. Indeed, you will find they DO come back to the tree of faith as a nation, and then such unity of Jew and Gentile in the same tree of faith, both now grafted in, the Jews inserted BACK, is thrust into the scene, the apostle rejoicing in the unity that rushes into the scene. What wisdom has God who invented such a scenario.
Now the covenant with Abraham (as in Romans 4) was the basis of God's dealing with him, and He offered him both certain lands, and the coming of the Messiah in the person of one of his descendants, the Messiah a blessing for all people. Back in place, Israel is not jilted, the covenant aborted, nor is the word of God squashed in emotion. Both promises remain, and while both Jew and Gentiles now have this open Gospel - for there is only one Christ with only one Gospel (Galatians 1, Isaiah 9, John 1 and 3), the Jewish people has Jerusalem again, both now and in that time as in Isaiah 2, when it being the place of Christ's once for all sacrifice and resurrection, is a special centre of divine rule. You see this especially clearly in Isaiah 11.
It was therefore clear what would happen even before our recent 20th century events, showing the return of the Lord to be "near", in terms of His own direct verbal authority. Now it is most manifest, with the many connections between the Jewish resurgence into Jerusalem, and the soon to follow rule of the Lord over the whole world.
Therefore it seemed good, when one found a very good set of Bible Study themes in a work by a famous author, one of excellent reliability, to respond to just one error, The premillenial position ("near" does not mean, after a millenium of waiting!) is surely taken but the return of the nation of the Jewish people to Jerusalem and therein shortly thereafter to assault is set after the millenium.
This is we have shown, do show and DV shall continue to show, ignores that the spectacular and once in 1900 year return of this people to their land, in spectacular fashion, has already been fulfilled abundantly, so that it now has not 10000 but 8 million inhabitants, multiple kinds of atomic weaponry but a flourishing agriculture (cf. Isaiah 35). It has already fought the statistically staggering wars foretold, and achieved the notorious triumphs in this setting, as declared in advance by God.
It is too practically important a point for one to simply bypass. Christ foretold also that many would be taken by surprise when He came, and advised close attention to coming history and signals. His return is NOW NEAR by multiple definition and ways of definition, and as from His own lips.
Below is a further notice to this point, written a little earlier. Both may be used together.
The return of the Jews, as many scriptures show, is before the millenium and their believers are part of the wedding in Revelation 19:8, issuing from which the Lord comes with all the saints. .
Crucial for us all to realise (cf. Romans 11:25), is that the mass conversion to occur in Israel (cf. Zechariah 12-13) now appears not far off, but in the very sudden sequence. Biblically stressed and re-stressed, it comes inexorably, following the epochal and massive return of Israel to its ancient territory, with the land indeed "too small" for them. "In those days and at that time," says Jeremiah 33:12-18, with this restoration of this nation from world-wide, the Lord will come to rule. The matter is now ripe. The restoration of many Jewish people from all sides, to their land is already a matter of wide marvel to many. It is the first such since the desolation by Rome.
As to the more general point of Israel's continued prophetic relevance, the word of God is singularly emphatic at the end of both Jeremiah 31 and 33, He will indeed fulfil His express undertakings to Abraham, BOTH (Micah 7:8-20). Contrary efforts will infallibly fail.
Verses showing these things follow.
Luke 21:24 (where
the city of Jerusalem is the highlighted focus, its liberation
a sign of Christ's early or " near" return, to follow).
Jeremiah 30:23 - 31:20; also Ch. 33. Note esp. Jeremiah 33:7-15.
Ezekiel 38:1-21. Note esp. 38:9, cf. 39:1-7.
Isaiah 49:1-6,12-21; 66:1-13,18-23.
Zechariah 12:1-13:1; 14:5.
Revelation 19:8. Consider this. This verse figures the marriage of the Lamb in heaven, prior to the coming of Christ to rule on earth, His coming with "all the saints" as in I Thessalonians 3:13, and Zechariah 14:5. The marriage of the Lamb is not in instalments, a thousand years apart (i.e. the second for the Jewish national consignment, after the millenium). Essential to marriage however is unity and whole-heartedness.
Paul rejoices in Romans 11, in the re-placement of Israel, the cut-out (because of un- belief), now brought right back into the tree of faith: TWO branches now grafted in, one tree of faith. Neither swallows up the other, but the tree both! (cf. Romans 11:21-23).
The very keynote in the Romans 11 allegory is the balance in unity in the scenario of the whole operation. It is far removed from having the body of Israel as a post-millenial add-on.
What does happen after the millenium is this, as in Revelation 20:7ff., that the spirit of 'Gog and Magog', now a proverbial name since their ruinous rout before the return of Jesus Christ as in Ezekiel 38-39, seizes a populace again, showing their starkly rebellious and chronically self-absorbed character/ Still unconverted, they attempt to take over the whole realm of the saints, their entire testimony, as hell alone could be tolerated; and this time their end comes into a focus that suffers no restoration. They attempt not only Israel as their invasion focus, but the WHOLE power and place of God!
Their hopeless effrontery, unrealism, totalitarian lust and robbery inclination, to take over from God what He has made and understands utterly, with their superficial savvy and ludicrous pettifogging, is aborted now for ever, squashed to pulp, the seeds smouldering, the threat, always logically negligible, now for ever out of all place. Death and hell are cast away into endless ruin (Revelation 20:14).
Again, in Isaiah 11, it is obvious that the millenial rule of Christ Jesus on the earth, does not omit a full restoration for Israel. Part of it is as seen both in Micah 7:15 (prelude) and Isaiah 11:16 (disjunction of bullying). Note esp. Isaiah 11:4, 11:12 and 11:16. Long is Israel to enjoy a parity which allows no partisan over-thrust. But so will ALL the godly, who rejoice in Israel's restoration (Deuteronomy 32:43, cited by Paul). With different backgrounds, they have but one foreground in creative combination (Isaiah 66, Gal. 3:28).