Feb 5, 2011

Israel: The Super Sign of the End-Times (Part 3)

Todd BakerBy Todd Baker
B'rit Hadashah Ministries


Secular historians generally write history from an anthropocentric view. That is how it relates and centers on Man and his development and various achievements in a closed universe. But the Bible concentrates on the historical fulfillment of God’s covenantal relationship with the nation of Israel leading up to the first coming of the Messiah and His second coming to Israel in a supernatural fashion whereby God freely and arbitrarily intervenes in the affairs of man. In fact, the Bible says God determines the national boundaries and demographic habitations of humanity with the intent that the children of Israel could live in the land of Canaan in an area that would perfectly accommodate their numbers and allow for this. For Deuteronomy 32:8 says:

“When the Most High divided their inheritance to the nations, when He separated the sons of Adam, He set the boundaries of the peoples according to the number of the children of Israel.”
And all that the Bible has predicted about Israel’s divine history thus far has literally come to pass.

So then it is only reasonable and natural to conclude that the prophecies about Israel’s future will also literally be fulfilled. Bible Prophecy predicted as a super sign and precondition for the return of Christ the regathering of the Jewish people to their ancient homeland as the nation of Israel. That took place on May 14, 1948. The rest of this article will explore and explain how the modern nation of Israel is fulfilling this role as the super sign to indicate the coming of Christ is close at hand and could very well happen in our generation.

The Bible predicts in Deuteronomy 30:1-3 that the return of the Lord Jesus Christ will occur sometime after the regathering and return of the Jews from world wide dispersion into the land of Israel. God gave this prophecy through Moses and the Jews just before God brought them into the land of Canaan. The Authorized Version of these verses is most telling:
“And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations whither the Lord thy God hath driven thee, And shalt return unto the Lord thy God, and shalt obey His voice. According to all that I commanded thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul; That then the Lord thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the Lord thy God hath scattered thee.”
Notice the chronology or sequence of prophetic events here:
  1. God will bring the Jews back to the land of Israel from the nations of the world where they were scattered abroad by Him for their disobedience.
  2. During this regathering the Lord Himself “will return” and complete the restoration of all Israel back into the land.
In others words, when God begins to bring the Jews back into their land He gave them, Christ will return! The phrase “will return” is omitted from most modern translations of the Bible since the Masoretic text (upon which the majority of modern translations of the Old Testament are based upon) and the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament) do not include it. But the Dead Sea Scrolls copied some 150 years before the birth of Christ and over 1,000 years older than any previously discovered manuscript of the Bible includes this very phrase! The passage reads as follows:
“…then the Lord your God will restore you from captivity, and have compassion on you, and will return and gather you from the peoples, [from] where the Lord your God has scattered you…” (Martin Abegg,Jr., Peter Flint, and Eugene Ulrich, The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible, p. 187).
Thus, the phrase has good precedent for being included as from the original. And the prophecy given in Deuteronomy 30:3 foretells that when the Jews return to their ancient homeland from the Diaspora (the scattering of the Jews to all Gentile nations of the world after the Babylonian exile in 586 B.C. and the Roman destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D.), the Lord Jesus Christ will return. If we just had this prophecy alone in Scripture concerning the return of the Jews to Israel and the return of the Lord following it, this would be adequate alone to believe in His word that He would regather the Jews back to Israel and subsequently return at the second Coming. This unquestionably means in the words of author Homer Duncan that:
“For centuries, the prophecies concerning the regathering of Israel lay dormant in the Word of God. There was no outward indication that they would be fulfilled, but they are now being fulfilled before our eyes, and this can mean but one thing: THE COMING OF THE LORD DRAWS NEAR.” (Homer Duncan, Israel: Past, Present, Future, p. 16)

Related Links
Tunisian Jews flee upheaval for Israel - JTA
Introduction to the Biblical Covenants: Land Covenant - SpiritandTruth.org (Tony Garland)
The Modern State of Israel in Bible Prophecy - Ariel Ministries (Arnold Fruchtenbaum)
Federations launching $5.5 million campaign for Ethiopian aliyah - Jewish Telegraphic Agency
Is Modern Israel Fulfilling Prophecy? - Pre-Trib.org (Thomas Ice)