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The Persecuted Church

 

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ISRAEL the Apple of God's Eye

Does God still have a nation called Israel? What is the difference between Israel and the Church. Is the church now spiritual Israel? 

 It was Israel that God separated as a nation starting with one man, Abraham. These became the Hebrews (Gen.12) who are descendents of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  Today the church is made up of both Jews and gentiles together. The Church is not a nation but a spiritual entity of believers in Israel's Messiah- Yeshua Ha Mashiach. 

Not everyone will agree that God has a plan for the people called the Jews. There are objectors and objections from both the religious and secular sectors. Some  are  anti-Semitic willingly others unknowingly are. 

It has become known that over 85% of the churches today believe there are no promises to the Jews. That Israel doe not belong in the land and that the promises are transferred to the church. This is well known as Replacement theology. Dr. Barnhouse had pointed out "The amillenarians take all the promises that belong to the Jews and apply them to the Church, leaving the curses, as Satan likes to do, for the Jews."(p.107 The Invisible War) 

The cults of Jehovah's Witnesses, the Seventh-day Adventists and others hold various theories that deprive Israel of her land and kingdom. But just as the Lord has always fulfilled His promises He will continue faithful to the end as he has made a covenant with Israel and the Jews and will complete it.  

For the Christian that rightly divides the word, he can see that God has a plan for the Jew  they have not been permanently cast off.  God's plan for this ancient people is revealed through the NT that he will have them turn  back to Him. In fact, the Jew remains as a mystery of history, insolvable apart from this revelation.   they have been the object of persecution and hatred, yet the the Jew remains, when many of his persecutors have gone. God is sovereign as he works history to its final goal.

"I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee" (Gen. 12:3). while this is ignored by many we have seen this in employed with saddam hussain  reaping the repucussions for his assaslts.

Israel is God's time clock the key to prophecy. God spoke to Moses reminding him of what he spoke to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Exod 6:4-6   "I have also established My covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, in which they were strangers. "And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel whom the Egyptians keep in bondage, and I have remembered My covenant. you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, I will rescue you from their bondage, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. "His intention was to bring them into the promised land to dwell.
Deut 31:29   "For I know that after my death you will become utterly corrupt, and turn aside from the way which I have commanded you; and evil will befall you in the latter days, because you will do evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke Him to anger through the work of your hands."

Judg 2:11,3:7  So the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD. They forgot the LORD their God, and served the Baals and Asherahs.

Lev.26 God states of Israel if they do not obey me he will punish them in various ways.
Lev 26:39-42   And those of you who are left shall waste away in their iniquity in your enemies' lands; also in their fathers' iniquities, which are with them, they shall waste away.40    'But if they confess their iniquity and the iniquity of their fathers, with their unfaithfulness in which they were unfaithful to Me, and that they also have walked contrary to Me,41    and that I also have walked contrary to them and have brought them into the land of their enemies; if their uncircumcised hearts are humbled, and they accept their guilt--42    then I will remember My covenant with Jacob, and My covenant with Isaac and My covenant with Abraham I will remember; I will remember the land.

Jer 29:18-19 And I will pursue them with the sword, with famine, and with pestilence; and I will deliver them to trouble among all the kingdoms of the earth-- to be a curse, an astonishment, a hissing, and a reproach among all the nations where I have driven them, because they have not heeded My words, says the LORD, which I sent to them by My servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them; neither would you heed, says the LORD.
Jer. 9:15-16  therefore thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: "Behold, I will feed them, this people, with wormwood, and give them water of gall to drink.  "I will scatter them also among the Gentiles, whom neither they nor their fathers have known. And I will send a sword after them until I have consumed them."

God said in Neh. 1:8 if you are unfaithful I will scatter you.' but he also said...

Jer.30:18, 31:8 "Behold I will bring them from the north country and gather them from the ends of the earth."

Isa.43:5 I will bring your descendants from the east and gather you from the west...
Moses prophecy of dispersion. There are over 4 million Jews in Israel and 14 million world wide

vs.40 they need to confess their iniquity and of their fathers specific sinvs.42 God will fufill the abrahamic covenant concerning the land.

Jer.3:12 vs.14-18 blessings in the Messianic kingdom

Zech.12:9-14 call upon him

Zech13 cleansing Zech. 14 the Messianic kingdom

THE JEWISH PEOPLE WOULD BE PERSECUTED

The people would not only be scattered, Jesus also predicted that the Jewish race would be persecuted.  Like no other people Isreal will be persecuted (Anti semitism) Deut. 28:37 "And you shall become an astonishment, a proverb, and a byword among all nations where the LORD will drive you.

‘Daughters of Jerusalem, do not weep for Me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For indeed the days are coming in which they will say, "Blessed are the barren, the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never nursed." Then they will begin to say to the mountains, "Fall on us!" and to the hills, "Cover us!" (Luke 23:28-30).

History records that the Jewish people have gone through terrible persecution as Jesus predicted. From the  Middle Ages, the Holocaust in World War II. the Jews have been a persecuted race, like no other people in history, yet they survive.

THOUGH PERSECUTED, THE NATION WILL SURVIVE

Zech 14

Though scattered and persecuted, Jesus also predicted the Jewish people would not perish. Though the nation was to suffer terribly, Jesus made it clear they will still survive. And they will fall by the edge of the sword, and be led away captive into all nations. And Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled (Luke 21:24).

They would be persecuted until the times of the Gentiles would be fulfilled. Once this period of Gentile rule was over, the Jews would again have self-rule.


Hosea 5:15  I will return again to My place till they acknowledge their offense. Then they will seek My face; in their affliction they will earnestly seek Me."

God will return to his place = heaven. He left there when he became the man Jesus. he will wait for them to confess their offense during the tribulation period. Their offense is singular and specific which is the same as the one in the wilderness of unbelief.

Ist they were to be dispersed throughout the world they have maintained their national identity, no other nation has done this without a homeland.

May 14 1948, they were given the land they were driven out of 1880 years before in the diaspora.

Ezek 20:34 "I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you are scattered, with a mighty hand, with an outstretched arm, ...

Ezek 37:21-22 "Then say to them, 'Thus says the Lord GOD: "Surely I will take the children of Israel from among the nations, wherever they have gone, and will gather them from every side and bring them into their own land; "and I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king over them all; they shall no longer be two nations, nor shall they ever be divided into two kingdoms again.

They regained Jerusalem in June 1967 every war they fight they gain more land. If the Arabs want land they need to stop challenging Israel.

Islam had Jerusalem for a 1,000 years and turned it into rubble, they changed their mind when they found it was important to the Jews. All the world is focused on Jerusalem in fear of war. Jerusalem is certainly not a popular vacation spot, more people visit the Lourdes shrine than Isreal.

Zech. 12:2-3 "Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. "And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.

 

Before his death in 1921, Dr. C. 1. Scofield wrote, "'If God has decreed the reconstitution of the nation of Israel upon the sacred soil of Palestine, no reluctance of the people will delay it one hour." In May 1948, the independence of the State of Israel was proclaimed. Fifteen years have seen the remarkable growth of the infant nation. The desert has indeed blossomed like a rose.

Isa 27:6 Those who come He shall cause to take root in Jacob; Israel shall blossom and bud, and fill the face of the world with fruit.

Israel has become the 3rd largest fruit exporter in the world, they are lush while the surrounding nations are barren. It was formerly uninhabited now they sell flowers to Holland

The preparation for the temple utensils and furniture of the temple are being made in accordance to the levitical law.63 of the 103 instruments are ready and currently the  Priests are being trained for temple Rev.11:1

the regathering of his covenant people

Abrahamic Covenant

 

God gave to Abraham three unconditional promises in Genesis 12.1-3. In verse I there is the promise of a national blessing-a national land divinely deeded. In verse 2 individual blessing is promised. This, literally, is the promise of numerous descendants. It also points to a day when those descendants win be held in high esteem and be the source of great blessing. In verse 3 is the third promise of universal blessing redemption, both for Israel and, through her, to all the world. But because of her great sin, the fulfillment of this covenant was postponed.

 

Moses, in prophesying Israel's future rebellion, also spoke of her future reestablishment in the land in accordance with the Abrahamic Covenant (Dt. 30-56). This is precisely the same statement made by Jeremiah (Jer. 31:31-33) and known as the New Covenant. Note that the covenant to be replaced is not the Abrahamic Covenant but the Mosaic Covenant

 

(v. 32). Thus, there is a day yet future when God will fulfil it completely the covenant He made with Abraham.

The first Regathering

The Bible dearly teaches two distinct dispersions and two subsequent regatherings of the nation of Israel. The first dispersion was prophesied in Deuteronomy 28:36-37 and occurred in two phases. The first phase took place about 721 B.C, when the northern kingdom (Israel) was carried away into Assyria (cp. 2 KL 17.6). The second phase began around 608 B.C. when Judah, the southern kingdom was carried captive into Babylon (cp. 2 Ki. 24-11-16; 25:8-11). Jeremiah prophesied that the latter dispersion would last 70 years (Jer. 25:11). There was a partial return during the time of Ezra and Nehemiah, around 538 B.C.

there are two regatherings for Israel first is in unbelief which we now see happening. the 2nd will be in the tribulation when Zech. 12:8-10 Zechariah speaks of the Lord's retribution upon the nations as a time when, "In that day the LORD will defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; the one who is feeble among them in that day shall be like David, and the house of David shall be like God, like the Angel of the LORD before them.  "It shall be in that day that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.  "And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they have pierced; they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn."
Jesus said he would not return until they call upon him saying blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.

Deut. 30:3 then the LORD your God will restore you from captivity, and have compassion on you, and will gather you again from all the peoples where the LORD your God has scattered you.  (v.5) And the LORD your God will bring you into the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it . (vs:7-8)  And the LORD your God will inflict all these curses on your enemies and on those who hate you, who persecuted you. And you shall again obey the LORD, and observe all His commandments which I command you today.

Israel must endure forever (Jar 31:35-38) or the prophecies of the Bible and Christ's promises to her could not be fulfilled. Christ referred to the cities of Israel in existence at His Second Coming (Mt 10:23), proof enough that the church has not replaced her.

When does Jesus come back?

Mt.25:31-46 establishment of the messianic kingdom. Isa.64, Ps.69-70 Israel pleading for 2nd coming Hosea 6:1-3 repenting of their national sin

they need to confess their iniquity and of their fathers specific sin

vs.42 God will fufill the abrahamic covenant concerning the land.

Jer.3:12 vs.14-18 blessings in the Messianic kingdom

Zech.12:9-14 call upon him Mt.23:37-39 When they say come a day when the Jewish leaders will lead the nation in repentance and ask him to come back

Moses prophecy of dispersion. Lev.26:40-42 Jer.3:11-18 Zech.12:10-133 Mt.23:27-29

 

The Gospel is to the Jew first. Paul's heart and God's was to have Israel turn to him even after they rejected Jesus when he was physically here on earth.

The gospel was and still is- to the Jew first, it is because Israel is in a covenant relationship with God. And it is the only nation which is a covenant nation.   when God gives forth blessings, they go to the Jew first and also to the Greek. Likewise, when God gives forth curses, these also go to the Jew first and also to the Greek.

to the Jew first, it is because Israel is in a covenant relationship with God. And it is the only nation which is a covenant nation. Hence, when God gives forth blessings, they go to the Jew first and also to the Greek. Likewise, when God gives forth curses, these also go to the Jew first and also to the Greek. In Greek this is a continuous action. We see Paul affirm this.

Rom.1:16 Acts 2, 13:2-3,5,14, 14:1, 16:12-13, 17:1-2,10,16-17, 18:1,4,19, 19:1,8, 28:17

Ps.122:6 the prerequisite fore peace on earth is the salvation of the nation Israel.

 A true jew is one circumcised in the flesh and the  heart The gentiles now partake of the olive tree covenants Rom.11:11-39

To gospel declared to the gentiles 
Isa 9:1-2
1 Nevertheless the gloom will not be upon her who is distressed, as when at first He lightly esteemed the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward more heavily oppressed her, by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, in Galilee of the Gentiles.The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in the land of the shadow of death, upon them a light has shined.
 

Isa 11:10-11 "And in that day there shall be a Root of Jesse, who shall stand as a banner to the people; for the Gentiles shall seek Him, and His resting place shall be glorious."  It shall come to pass in that day that the LORD shall set His hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people who are left, from Assyria and Egypt, from Pathros and Cush, from Elam and Shinar, from Hamath and the islands of the sea.
 
Jer 16:19-21 O LORD, my strength and my fortress, my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come to You from the ends of the earth and say, "Surely our fathers have inherited lies, Worthlessness and unprofitable things."Will a man make gods for himself, which are not gods? "Therefore behold, I will this once cause them to know, I will cause them to know my hand and My might; and they shall know that My name is the LORD.


Isa 42:1 "Behold! My Servant whom I uphold, my Elect One in whom My soul delights! I have put My Spirit upon Him; he will bring forth justice to the Gentiles.
 
Isa. 42:6-9"I, the LORD, have called You in righteousness, and will hold Your hand; I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, as a light to the Gentiles,To open blind eyes, to bring out prisoners from the prison, those who sit in darkness from the prison house.    I am the LORD, that is My name; and My glory I will not give to another, nor My praise to graven images.   Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them."Isa. 60:1-3 1 

Isa 65:1 "I was sought by those who did not ask for Me; I was found by those who did not seek Me. I said, 'Here I am, here I am,' to a nation that was not called by My name.


 

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