There have been times I have said to myself, as some of you may have, "I wish I could have lived during those day in the Bible, because If I had seen that, I wouldn't have any trouble believing." Today we’re going to take a look at an historical occasion that is about to occur right now, in our lives, that not only shows undeniable proof that our God is real, but that we are also closer to meeting Him than we could ever imagine. Does anyone know what the 14th of this month is on the calendar? It is literally a moment in all mankind's history that is of Biblical importance: it is—to the day—exactly 70 years since Israel became a nation again. And there is absolutely no way, as believers in Jesus Christ that we can miss this one moment in time, and not proclaim what it means, to the Glory of God.
In the early pages of God's Word, it was revealed that this small, insignificant group of slaves—the Israelites—would be freed, grown, preserved and used in mankind's history, to bring His Word—and eventually the Messiah Himself, into this world—as part of a timeless plan to redeem us to God the Father. But, even before these former slaves had completely formed an official nation while they were still wandering in the desert, God told them through Moses, there would come a time in which they would turn their backs on Him, even as His chosen people. And because of this rebellion, there would be grave consequences. Listen closely to these very unusual and specific declarations of what would happen: Deuteronomy 28:62-67. Jesus Himself, reiterates this unusual proclamation again 1400 years later, just before they actually reject Him as prophesied: Luke 21:20-24. Jesus even gives more specific detail about the greatest structure of their time—the Temple itself: Matthew 24: 1-2. So, the prophecy went like this: When you reject My Son, the Messiah, I will cause you to be completely devastated. Those who survive will be driven completely from your own country; scattered so harshly that you will have to live among all the other nations on earth. And there, throughout time you will be persecuted, finding no peace, rest or safety—even your Temple mount will not only be destroyed, but literally have every stone removed from one another—so that it disappears completely. This is a very unusual, and dangerous prediction to make as a prophet, because many nations go to war, even get defeated or overtaken, but few are completely obliterated and scattered throughout every nation on earth with no place to call a homeland again. Fewer still, could be markedly persecuted and hated by all nations throughout history. But you and I have the luxury of looking back in history, to verify or dispute every prophecy made in these Scriptures—some over 3400 years old. What does history tell us? That in 70 AD, the Roman General Titus crushed Jerusalem and destroyed their Temple. And history tells us that when the Romans burned the Temple, large amounts of gold melted into the crevices of block, causing the soldiers to literally take the entire Temple apart, stone by stone in order to retrieve all of the gold. And by 135 AD, all of the Jews were completely driven from Israel into all the world and banned from ever returning to their land. And just as prophesied, they have literally become the most hated, persecuted group in all of history—labeled, "The Wandering Jews”. We've seen the persecution and prejudice in our generation through the horrors of the Holocaust; even now, Antisemitism is at its highest levels since immediately before the Holocaust; and the view of the entire world is apparent, with every UN meeting and vote. We can safely say, having gone no farther than this in our study, that highly unusual and very unlikely predictions made over 3400 years ago, and 2000 years ago—about one specific group of people, which have proven to be 100% accurate in every way—are incredibly difficult to explain or accept already, and we are not even scratching the surface.
Before we talk about "What Actually Happened" from there in prophecy and reality, concerning Israel, I would like to briefly discuss what, in all probability, should have happened to Israel at this point. Because this part of history, again, shows nothing but God's Awesome Hand at work. Never, ever has a nation maintained its national identity, even 300 to 500 years after removal from a homeland (ex: Hittites, Assyrians, Babylonians - all were massive powers of ancient world—definitely bigger than the Jews) But, you will find none exist today - extinct from the world. The Roman Government (drove out in A.D. 135) even issued a decree that any Jew found in Palestine was to be killed on sight. They were scattered through Europe, Spain, and the Americas for nineteen centuries of bloody exile and hatred.
As amazing as these prophesies were, the most amazing part is—long before Israel was a nation—long before it was annihilated and dispersed to all other nations—the details of how it would be resurrected against all odds was already written: Isaiah 11:12; Ezekiel 37:11-14. And here is why this 70th Anniversary of Israel is so important: (Listen to when this resurrection as a nation was to take place): Ezekiel 38:8 (in the latter years or last days). Christ makes a remarkable statement in Matthew about a "sign" to the last generation. In this statement, He talks of the fig tree: Matthew 24:32-34.
The Greek word for parable, means a fictitious narrative conveying a compared truth. The fig tree and the fig are used almost exclusively in reference to the nation of Israel in the Old and New Testaments. Jeremiah 24 talks of "good figs" of Judah being restored to their land. Jesus Himself, (Matt. 21) commits a random, unexplainable act, when He finds a fig tree with no fruit and curses it to wither (obviously making a case that Israel was not fruitful (accepting) when He came, and would therefore be cursed). Here, He says learn the lesson of the "fig tree"—meaning when you see the signs mentioned, He is about to return. But, most scholars see that He went much deeper than that: When you see the fig tree bloom once again (the only fig tree that He ever illustrated, which withered because it rejected Him, was Israel). So here, like the other end-time verses, Jesus says when Israel sprouts anew, the time is near—a generation will not pass. What is considered a generation? Psalm 90:10. Now we see the significance of Israel's rebirth as a nation on May 14, 1948. Sunday, will be exactly 70 years, to the day—the average time of one generation, since they returned home. Not only are they the only race of people ever dispersed for a long period of time to return home; they were persecuted, hunted for extinction, abused, hated; and yet, not only survived, but kept their language, religion, and culture. [This breaks every rule; defeats all odds.] (see Benjamin Netanyahu) So, Scriptures said the Jewish people would be driven out of their land into all the earth, after rejecting their Messiah—Fulfilled. They would be hated and persecuted throughout the nations in dispersion—Fulfilled. They would be gathered back together, against all odds, in the last days, from around the entire world, into their own land again—Fulfilled! Who's generation has seen this? Ours.
As astounding as all of this proves to be so far, the conditions into which Israel is supposed to return, are equally astounding. First Prediction—Israel's land would become barren during the time of her exile: Ezekiel 38:8. There are a number of quotes from visitors through history, as far back as the 1200’s AD, each describing Israel as Mark Twain did in his 1867 visit:
“blistering, naked, treeless land... given over wholly to weeds - a silent mournful expanse... There was hardly a tree or a shrub anywhere. Even the olive and the cactus, those fast friends of a worthless soil, had almost deserted the country." Second Prediction—The land's fertility would drastically alter when Israel returned: Ezekiel 36:30, 34-35. Isaiah 41:18-20.
Isaiah 27:6. When the Jews returned to their land, it was a barren waste, as prophesied—but look at the miracle of the land today: even though more than 1/2 the land is desert, with improper climate and water, and only 20% is naturally arable (usable for planting...) Israel has become so agriculturally blessed that it can live off of 2/3 of it's own production, and export the remaining 1/3 to the world. ["Israel will bud and blossom and fill the whole earth with fruit!"(1) Agricultural production has expanded 16 times, three times more than population growth.(2) “Land of milk & honey”, has become literal! (2-1)
Highest yielding cows in world; incredible honey production. In the 1800's, had less than 1000 trees in whole land; today over 300 million trees (fruit and forest). It’s the only country in world to enter 21st century with net gain of trees.(3) We have seen areas of the world go from fertile to wilderness in our time (Sahara Desert grows in Africa), but we have never seen wastelands turned fertile. God has His Hand on Israel, and He is showing the world. The Third and most amazing Prediction of all—the attitude of the world, and the impact of Israel's return. (Read this and tell me it does not read like today's headline news): Israel was to be an intoxicating targeted for destruction by those around it. Despised by almost the entire world, and yet, untouchable by this vast number of enemies: Zechariah 12:2-3 (trembling). As a literal miraculous proof of that text—in our recent history—three vastly superior armies attacked young Israel, less than 20 years after becoming a nation (Egypt, Jordan, and Syria). In an almost supernatural victory, Israel (young and ill-equipped), not only beat all three nations back, but retook her capital of Jerusalem as well. This one small country, only 9 miles wide in some places—the 100th smallest country in the world, with less than 1/1000th of the world's population—is surrounded by 22 Arab countries, hungry for her destruction, with 50x's the population.(4) Israel has not only remained untouchable as prophesied, but has been blessed beyond any other country in such a short time. (see Bloomberg Business News)
Every prophecy about its demise, about the land condition over the centuries, about the return against all odds, about the almost unnatural return of fertile land and exports, about the hatred from all surrounding nations and the world, and about the unbelievable blessings in every area as a nation—can be seen and proven unmistakably in our history—with most occurring within many of our lifetimes. Of all of the nations that are to hate Israel in the last days, two of the main stars to rise against her in allegiance are Russia and Iran (Magog and Persia: Persia wanting a Prey /Magog wanting a Spoil /Ezek. 38). The hatred of surrounding countries is to cause such worldwide tension, that the Anti-Christ gets his early fame bringing a Seven Year Peace Treaty with Israel and the surrounding countries (Daniel 9:27). A force of 200 million men is to come from east of the Euphrates in the same generation (Red China has this exact number today) (Revelation 9, 16) A system of buying and selling is to appear, using only a number system (First generation with this technology in all history) (Revelation 13) Military technology will have the power to melt skin from bones (Zechariah 14:12), and burn a 1/3 of the earth
(Rev. 8, 9).
We don't have to go back to Biblical times to see enough evidence that His Word is True and Jesus Christ is real—we are living in biblical times. Could these things have described any other generation? Could this possibly have all been coincidence? We just need to be honest enough to admit the facts are indisputable.
If you don't believe God—that’s your choice against the proof—not because of it.
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