Israel: What You Need to Understand
By, Bob Williamson for Words for the Day
Israel is a ridiculously tiny little country, but the entire world remains fixated on it.
Because God is fixated on it. The Scriptures are quite clear that among all the nations in the world, God chose Israel as the one He would use to reach a lost world. This was the nation that God delivered out of slavery in Egypt, the nation to whom God gave the land of Canaan, the nation through which God gave us the Bible, and most importantly, the nation through whom Jesus Christ, the Messiah would come.
Was there something special about these people unlike others?
The heart of God is His unconditional love towards all peoples, but there is a distinct covenant commitment of His love and purpose for Israel. God does not love Jews more than other people, but for His own purpose He used them in a profoundly different way than any other people. God Himself tells us in Deuteronomy 7:7 why He did it when addressing the ancient Israelites: “The LORD did not set His affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples. But it was because the LORD loved you and kept the oath He swore to your forefathers that He brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the land of slavery, from the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; He is the faithful God, keeping His covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love Him and keep His commands.”
God loved Abraham for his faithfulness and chose him as the father of the nation of Israel to be the people through whom Jesus Christ would be born as our Savior from sin and death. God first promised the Messiah after Adam and Eve’s fall into sin and later confirmed that the Messiah would come from the line of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
Jesus had to come from some nation of people, and God chose Israel; however, God’s reason for choosing the nation of Israel was not solely for producing the Messiah. Another of His goals was that Israel would go and teach others about Him. Israel was to be a nation of priests, prophets, and missionaries to the world. God’s intent was for Israel to be a distinct people, a nation who pointed others towards God and His Messiah, and Savior.
Alas, in many ways Israel failed in this task, but the good news is God’s ultimate purpose for Israel – that of bringing the Messiah into the world – was fulfilled perfectly in the Person of Jesus Christ.
Because of their dark sins, the ancient Israelites went into captivity and lost their national prominence, leading many to wonder, why God chose Israel in the first place. But like an unfinished book there is more to come for this people. When Christ returns to this earth and sets up the Kingdom of God, He will restore Israel to its position of leadership in the world (Isaiah 11:12; 14:1-2). A humbled, obedient people will then fulfill the leadership role God intended for them. Jesus made the categorical statement John 4:22 – “Salvation is of the Jews.”
That is what makes what is happening to Israel in these days so significant. Congress voted in 1995 to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital but oddly provided a security waiver to presidents to delay the move. Every president since has campaigned on the promise to move the embassy and then broken his promise using the waiver for cover. Essentially this meant Israel was left to stand alone.
Enters Donald Trump and lo and behold he made the bold move. He did not wilt like other politicians, and preside by the polls, he did the right thing and moved the embassy. Israel no longer is standing alone. This is likely one of the reasons that God put President Trump into power in the most powerful country in the world in the first place.
Jerusalem is the 3000-year-old central city of the Jewish people, founded by King David himself. It is a no-brainer that it should be Israel’s capitol and we should recognize it as such. One day Jesus Christ will rule the world from His throne located in the Temple Mount square in the heart of Jerasulem. It will become the capitol of the entire world at that point.
We live in a time when there is increasing intensity, and vitriolic hostility toward Jerusalem and the Jews. The Bible is crystal clear in Zephaniah that when all nations are gathered against Israel, the end is drawing near. Keep praying that there can be peace in Israel because evangelism will end when that day arrives, and like the flood far too many lost souls will be swept away in their sins.
Luke 21:20 “But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation is near . . . For these are the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.”