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Having taken you through five key chapters from Ezekiel, Zechariah and Isaiah, you will undoubtedly see that there is a thread running through all of those chapters:
The spiritual return of the children of Jacob to God.
The focus of this book has been the timing of Gog and Magog and the disasters that happen at that moment. But, that’s not God’s focus. Yes, He wants His children to be safe from what is coming, which is why He has warned us. But, God’s focus is:
The Return of Jacob.
Remember what Jesus said about a moment when the times of the Gentiles would be over:
…And Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.
– Luke 21:24b (NKJV)
Our time is over. We had 2000 years to serve God and spread the Gospel to every tongue and nation. We did that, and now the time has come for the Jews to return to God. And, as a part of this handover, we have a test to pass. If we see what the Bible actually says about this moment in time and prepare for it, we pass. If we don’t, we fail and suffer the consequences. It’s a life and death issue that almost no one is talking about.
Unfortunately, pastors and Bible teachers have largely ignored the timing of the salvation of Israel. Most of those who teach about the Jews coming to Christ one day are wonderful people, but they believe that we won't be around when it happens. The rest of 'Christendom' largely believes that the church has replaced Israel and that Jacob will never return to God, so timing means nothing to them. Those tiny few who are left, who agree with Paul that all Israel will be saved (Romans 11) and who believe that the timing is important, are stuck in between both camps and have to negotiate the minefield that lies between the two of them.
The Return Of Jacob
So, before we dive into the important issue of timing let's reinforce the point that the Bible makes many many times, that Jacob will return to God, embracing Jesus as their Messiah:
Then you will remember your evil ways and your deeds that were not good; and you will loathe yourselves in your own sight, for your iniquities and your abominations.
– Ezekiel 36:31 (NKJV)
So I will make My holy name known in the midst of My people Israel, and I will not let them profane My holy name anymore. Then the nations shall know that I am the Lord, the Holy One in Israel.
– Ezekiel 39:7 (NKJV)
So the house of Israel shall know that I am the Lord their God from that day forward.
– Ezekiel 39:22 (NKJV)
And I will not hide My face from them anymore; for I shall have poured out My Spirit on the house of Israel,’ says the Lord God.”
– Ezekiel 39:29 (NKJV)
...In the day that the Lord binds up the bruise of His people
And heals the stroke of their wound.
– Isaiah 30:26 (NKJV)
10 “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 pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.
– Zechariah 12:10 (NKJV)
..They will call on My name,
And I will answer them.
I will say, ‘This is My people’;
And each one will say, ‘The Lord is my God.’ ”
– Zechariah 13:9 (NKJV)
Then, for those who are STILL not convinced, read Romans 11. These two verses should hit home especially hard:
26 And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written:
“The Deliverer will come out of Zion,
And He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob;
27 For this is My covenant with them,
When I take away their sins.”
- Romans 11:26-27 (NKJV)
Believe it or not, but most who call themselves christian can read those two verses and deny that God intends to save Israel. It makes me wonder if any of them know that Jesus was a Jew.
Why People Do Not Understand The Salvation of Israel
So, with all the evidence in the Bible about the return of Jacob to God...
...how could the salvation of Israel be so confusing?
For most of the past two millennia, the subject of Israel’s salvation just wasn’t important. The struggle of daily life-in-Christ was hard enough, without having to figure out the return of Israel, and their salvation. The Land of Israel was an awful place - ruled by violent, villainous barbarians. So, the idea of this fulfillment of prophecy was just… unimaginable. And, it was unimaginable, right up to the 20th century.
But today, the Children of Jacob have returned to the Land of Israel, and there are Christian Israelis sharing the gospel with other Israelis. And, I have seen with my own eyes that the Body of Christ is growing in Israel. So now, the unimaginable is perfectly imaginable.
But still, no one wants to talk about it.
It’s The Books
Well it’s because of all the books written by doctor this or theologian that – PhDs who ALSO don’t talk about the salvation of Israel. And those who DO talk about the salvation of Israel – get it wrong.
Here are the three main groups who seem to get this idea all mixed up:
- Most premillennialists believe that Israel will go back to the Law of Moses, with a Temple and blood sacrifices. I’m sure that there are different nuances to their belief, but essentially they say that the dispensation of Christ will end – with the Jews returning to the old one, or some version of it.
- The amillennialists spiritualize everything and claim that every reference to Israel, is a reference to Christians. To them, there is no need for the salvation of Israel, because all followers of Christ have replaced Israel.
- The postmillennialists believe that we are already in the Millennium – ruling and reigning with Christ – so it doesn’t matter anyway.
Those Christians who fall into one of the above, automatically don’t feel any need or have an interest in the topic of the Salvation of Israel. It's not that they don't care. It's just theoretical to them. Those of us who do not fall into one of the above… well …we are such a small group that no one writes books or has a loud enough voice to be heard.
The Old Testament
Another problem lies in our focus on the New Testament. The Old Testament is… well …old.
Who needs the Old Testament?
Well, Paul said that we ALL need it:
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
– 2 Timothy 3:16-17 (KJV)
When Paul wrote that, the New Testament did not exist. Therefore he was telling Timothy to read the Old Testament. And, there is more said about the Last Days in the Old Testament, than in the ‘new’. The 'Noble Bereans' understood this quite well:
10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. 11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
- Acts 17:10-11 (KJV)
The Jews of Berea were willing to search the Old Testament to verify the claims that Paul and Silas were making, and we should not hesitate to do the same.
Five Reasons Why Israel Will Be Saved Before The Antichrist Arrives
Okay, now that we have thoroughly established the core point, let’s talk about the five big reasons why we should expect the Israelis to accept Christ as their Lord and Savior BEFORE the Antichrist makes an appearance. You might argue with any one of these five points, but it’s hard to believe that you could successfully argue against all of them.
REASON ONE – The Standard Of Faith
Remember, if you are a Christian, you believe that there is no other way to salvation except through faith in Christ. You can’t be a Christian and believe any other way. And, the Bible is clear that the sacrifice of Jesus was the ONLY SACRIFICE.
Why would people claim otherwise?
If you remain unsure, here are three verses that should be pretty convincing:
All who dwell on the earth will worship him [The Beast], whose names have not been written in the Book of Life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.
- Revelation 13:8 (NKJV)
For we who have believed do enter that rest, as He has said:
“So I swore in My wrath,
‘They shall not enter My rest,’ ”
although the works were finished from the foundation of the world.
- Hebrews 4:3 (NKJV)
For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins.
- Hebrews 10:4 (NKJV)
We'll get into more of that when we talk about Galatians and Hebrews a bit later. But, it should be absolutely clear that there is literally no possible way for any future sacrifices to ever be a part of those who are saved. To put it another way:
You are not a follower of Christ, if you need to make sacrifices for sin in a temple.
This is such a big issue that you would need some pretty conclusive proof that the Children of Jacob are saved in some other way than faith in Christ. Yet, the main theories about The Last Days either claim that the question doesn't matter, or that they have a different path to Christ - without a shred of proof.
If you want to claim that the Jews are saved AFTER THE RESURRECTION, you have a lot of explaining to do. In fact, the idea that the Children of Jacob would not be in the Resurrection of the Just (Luke 14:14) is unimaginable. No, it’s actually impossible.
To make that work, you would need to make one or more of the following anti-Biblical claims:
There are more than two resurrections.
There is more than one Rapture.
The blood of bulls and goats will matter again.
Salvation isn't the same for Jew and Gentile.
To claim that the Jews would be saved in a different way than ourselves is a kind of blasphemy, since Jesus is at the core of everything that we are and everything that the Bible teaches. Faith in Christ is the universal requirement for salvation, so we should assume that this is how the Children of Jacob return to God.
Tell me again how faith in Christ happens?
Here’s the best definition of faith that I know:
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
– Hebrews 11:1 (KJV)
The vast majority of the theories about Israel’s salvation require that this Jewish faith will be by sight. They claim that they will see Jesus at His Second Coming. I have already proven over and over and over that Israel must be saved before the Antichrist, and I will prove it again later. But, think about the foolish theories that so many have.
Why are we assuming that the Jews will have a different faith than our own?
Shouldn’t the burden of proof be the opposite of what most people are assuming?
Some believe that the Salvation of Israel happens right at the beginning of the reign of the Antichrist. That’s a little better than some of the other theories, even though it’s still wrong.
But, why would you assume that Israel has faith in Christ for only 3.5 years? Or, even seven?
To assume that Israel has no time to mature spiritually before facing the worst persecution in human history is… bizarre - in addition to being an assumption without any basis in scripture.
Seriously, I have to ask...
God gives Jewish Christians no time to spiritually prepare for the coming of the Antichrist?
Salvation is not like some ‘quickie marriage’. Salvation is about a new birth in Christ. And, because God loves us, each of us is given time to drink the milk of the word, and then mature to the deeper things of God – the meat. That is the experience of each and every one of us.
So, why do we assume that God will not give this opportunity to Israel?
If God loves Israel so much – and He does – why would He NOT give them time to mature?
Lots of Christians keep repeating that ‘we are not appointed unto wrath’, while implying that the Jews are. How ironic that the Bible actually says the opposite, that we who have corrupted our faith in Christ will suffer wrath, while newly Christian Israel will be protected from our heresy.
Why would God punish the Jews for their sins, while not chastising us for ours?
The irony is that God shows us in Revelation 6, that Israel will have as much time as they need, to mature into the kind of grown men and women of God that I hope that you and I are. And, Israel will need every bit of that spiritual growth and maturity to withstand the evil doctrines of the Antichrist - the seeds of which, already corrupt our churches today.
Again, the burden of proof is on those who say otherwise.
And, the proof just isn’t there.
And then, there are those who believe that Israel – the physical descendants of Jacob – will not be saved. If you are such a person, I’m amazed that you’ve gotten this far. To believe that we replace Israel, and that the promises to Jacob are null and void… well …I’m astounded. It’s hard to believe that anyone could follow Christ while believing that the promises of God are frivolous and inconsistent.
Is it possible for God to not fulfill every single promise?
The burden of proof is squarely on your shoulders, if you wish to claim that the Jews will never be saved – or will be saved sometime after the rise of the Antichrist.
Setting The Default Position
Just remember that we have allowed non-Biblical ideas to change the default proposition, via one man-made theory after another. And, the only reason why these theories still exist have everything to do with the wave of rhetoric and emotion that has obscured the true meaning of the Bible.
Our default position should always be that the Children of Jacob are saved long before the coming of the Antichrist in the same way that you and I came to Christ. It should also be our default position that the Children of Jacob have time to mature in their faith so that they are ready for what happens during the Great Tribulation.
The burden of proof should lie upon those who believe otherwise.
Another way of saying that is:
What proof is there that Israel is saved AFTER the Tribulation begins?
Of course, the answer is none, but we should not be afraid to examine this issue carefully. And, when you look at what God thinks about the Law of Moses, this ‘default position’ looks really strong. And, this brings us to Reason Two.
REASON TWO – Hebrews 8 And Galatians
For those who think that Israel will turn back to the Law, think again. Read Hebrews 8. That chapter is a powerful indictment to all who want Israel to return to the sacrifice of bulls and goats for the covering of sin.
In fact, let’s look at the relevant part of that chapter:
6 But now [Jesus] has obtained a more excellent ministry, inasmuch as He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises.
7 For if that first covenant had been faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second. 8 Because finding fault with them, He says: “Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah— 9 not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they did not continue in My covenant, and I disregarded them, says the Lord. 10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. 11 None of them shall teach his neighbor, and none his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord,’ for all shall know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them. 12 For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.”
13 In that He says, “A new covenant,” He has made the first obsolete. Now what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.
– Hebrews 8:6-13 (NKJV)
During the time of Paul, there was a church in Galatia that didn’t understand this. They thought that following the Law was a good idea. Here is some of what Paul had to say to them:
1 O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified? 2 This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? 3 Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? 4 Have you suffered so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain?
– Galatians 3:1-4 (NKJV)
1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage. 2 Indeed I, Paul, say to you that if you become circumcised, Christ will profit you nothing. 3 And I testify again to every man who becomes circumcised that he is a debtor to keep the whole law. 4 You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.
– Galatians 5:1-4 (NKJV)
Those are powerful, powerful statements that demonstrate that Torah cannot and will not return as a way of salvation. Furthermore, Paul calls any desire to return to the Law of Moses as a ‘different gospel’. He says this here:
6 I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, 7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.
– Galatians 1:6-9 (NKJV)
Whether they know it or not, those who preach that the Jews will return to God via The Law (aka Torah), are actually preaching a different gospel. They are preaching a perversion of the foundation of salvation through Christ, and Paul calls those who preach such perversion to be accursed.
If you preach that the Jews will return to God through Torah and Temple sacrifices, there is literally a curse upon you.
Unfortunately, it is clear to me that many of our churches have been cursed. Instead of following what God says in the Bible, they have chased after the foolish ideas that their pastors were taught in seminary. Worse, things have gotten so bad in our churches that there is a growing movement to erase the writings of Paul from the New Testament. You might not see it in your own church, but it’s happening right now.
The bottom line is that a perfect covenant was made in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. There is no greater covenant, and there is no other covenant by which men and women can be saved. So, I ask all who wish to claim a return to Torah by the Jews:
Prove to me that there is a greater salvation than Jesus Christ.
Even having to write that sentence is horrifying to me. Anything that takes away from that foundation laid by God, is complete and damnable heresy.
REASON THREE – Revelation 12
I find Revelation 12 to be fascinating, as well as offering hope that we will be able to escape the Antichrist. I like hope, and will grab hold of any legitimate form of it – every chance that I get.
Revelation 12 centers around a woman.
And there appeared a great wonder in heaven; a woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars:
– Revelation 12:1 (KJV)
The twelve stars tell us that this is Israel. And, we have a bit of confirmation with verse five:
And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.
– Revelation 12:5 (KJV)
She then flees into the wilderness. I have some suspicions, but I’m not completely certain what the ‘wilderness’ is, other than the protection she receives in it for 1,260 days.
Who is the child?
Well, that is an easy one:
Therefore, this is confirmation that the woman with 12 stars is true-blue, through-and-through, physical Israel.
Then, there’s this:
And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon; and the dragon fought and his angels, And prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven.
– Revelation 12:7-8 (KJV)
(I’ve always wondered how you could have a war in heaven. I’m sure that God will tell us, when we get there.)
God’s angels are victorious in their war with Satan, and that vile being is cast to Earth – out of heaven. The next few verses indicate that God’s people were also victorious – because we were willing to give our lives for Christ.
God's people were NOT victorious because they were in a rapture that took them away before they could suffer persecution. No, they were victorious because they sacrificed their lives for their Lord and Savior. They died. Terribly. And, that's how they defeated Satan.
Then, there is this verse:
Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.
– Revelation 12:12 (KJV)
So, there will come a point in time when Satan and his angels are thrown out of heaven, and Satan will then do his very best to kill and destroy the people of Earth.
Has this happened yet?
Not that I can tell. Of course, events are beginning to accelerate, so… we’ll see. But, here is the point when it will become clear:
And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.
– Revelation 12:13 (KJV)
You might make a case that this happened at AD 70 or in the Holocaust. But, verse 14 clarifies when this happens:
And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.
– Revelation 12:14 (KJV)
That phrase, ‘time, and times, and half a time’ should give you all the clues that you need to place this moment in time:
The Antichrist will begin The Tribulation by trying to kill those Israelis who have chosen to follow Christ.
And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.
And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.
And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.
– Revelation 12:15-17 (KJV)
For some reason, the Antichrist is unable to go after those who flee into the wilderness. So, he turns his vile attention to those Christians living in the rest of the world.
My Hopefulness In Revelation 12
Now, I mentioned hope at the beginning of this section of text about Revelation 12:
Why does Revelation 12 give me hope?
Because that chapter demonstrates that there are limits to the power of the Antichrist.
What those limits are – and why – is hard to figure out exactly. But, it gives me some basis for thinking that there might be places in the world that will be able to escape the Antichrist. Having said that, the Bible only speaks of one place, and that is this 'wilderness' that Revelation 12 is talking about. My hope is that you will be able to get to this ‘wilderness’, when the time comes.
Israel Saved BEFORE Revelation 12
Now, why do I include this under the topic of Israel being saved before the Tribulation?
Because, before The Woman (Israel) can flee into the wilderness, she must be in covenant relationship with God – otherwise, she could not BE the woman. She must be saved. These are not unsaved Israelis who flee into the wilderness. These are followers of Jesus Christ, their Lord and Savior.
Furthermore, all the prophesies in the Old Testament indicate that Israel will be saved while they are in the Land of Israel. Therefore, they CANNOT be saved while they are in the wilderness – after having LEFT Israel.
Let me make this point extra clear:
- The prophecies about the salvation of Israel ALL show that Israel enters the Land of Israel BEFORE THEY ARE SAVED.
- All the prophecies about the salvation of Israel show them being saved IN THE LAND OF ISRAEL – not in a wilderness.
- Therefore, the Children of Israel MUST BE SAVED BEFORE REVELATION 12.
This means that there will have been a moment in time, before this event, when they will accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior. And as I described previously, it cannot be immediately prior to the coming of the Antichrist.
The question of HOW MUCH time that Israel will have before the coming of the Antichrist is hard to answer exactly. But, when you look at all the other evidence of Israel’s salvation… well …it should be clear that this salvation happens years before the Antichrist comes – more likely, decades.
REASON FOUR – The 144,000
Lots of foolishness has been written about the one hundred and forty four thousand. So, let me lay something to rest at the outset:
These are men.
They are virgins.
They are NOT Gentiles.
There are ONLY 144 thousand.
So, let’s talk about them. (Go here, for a discussion of the Seven Seals)
We first see these 144 thousand, here in Revelation 7:
And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.
And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.
– Revelation 7:2-4 (KJV)
Notice that this happens when the sixth seal is opened, and it indicates that there needs to be extra time for this seal to finish, before the seventh and final seal.
Is this delay – this pause – required because it takes time to place these seals upon their foreheads?
Is this a time-consuming task?
I’m not sure that we completely understand what this means, but at the very least, we’re talking about 144 thousand Christians who have been given something special. They are 12 thousand men from 12 tribes. And, at a minimum, it means that the Return of Jacob – the salvation of Israel – happens during Seal Six, if not before. (And yes, I add a note of uncertainty here because even I have struggled to see this.)
You will also notice that each seal in Revelation 6 takes a certain amount of time to accomplish. Years of time. Yes, they undoubtedly overlap. Yes, they might even happen concurrently. But, the seals of Revelation take years to accomplish. And, the sealing of these 144 thousand – Seal Six – is actually given even MORE time.
So, consider this:
If seals one through five take years, seal six should take decades.
(Again, go here for a discussion of the Seven Seals.)
And, we can say with absolute assurance that you cannot get past Seal Six, without the salvation of Israel happening. But, I’m getting a little ahead of myself.
We also see the 144,000 here:
And I looked, and, lo, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with him an hundred forty and four thousand, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.
And I heard a voice from heaven, as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of a great thunder: and I heard the voice of harpers harping with their harps: And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth.
These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever he goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb. And in their mouth was found no guile: for they are without fault before the throne of God.
– Revelation 14:1-5 (KJV)
How You Get 144 Thousand Virgin Men
There’s a little problem when you starting thinking about those 144 thousand virgin men.
Where are you going to get them?
And again, please don’t play games with the Bible. It says 144 thousand virgin men, and that means male humans that have never had sex. It means that they are not women. And, they are descendants of Jacob.
THESE ARE NOT GENTILES!
Sorry to shout like that, but I am so very tired of those who wish to twist the Bible. If the Bible says that something is so… then it is so.
Again, where are you going to get these 144 thousand?
How large must the population of Israeli Christians be, to get 144 thousand virgin men, who are mature followers of Jesus Christ?
But, before you answer that, remember that two thirds of everyone in the Land of Israel is killed when Gog and Magog comes – according to Zechariah 13:8 . As I write this, there appears to be about 14 million people living in what we call the Land of Israel, today. Close to seven million of those people identify themselves as Jewish.
This means that a maximum of four to five million Jewish Israelis will survive Gog and Magog.
Can you get 144 thousand virgin men from that size of a population?
Depending upon the resulting population size, we’re talking about three percent of the population needing to be virgin, male and reasonably mature believers in Jesus Christ. So yeah. That is a reasonable number. (And yes, I also was worried that it wasn't.)
Don’t Forget Ezekiel’s Fire
Furthermore, Ezekiel’s Fire will knock out electricity all over planet earth and probably also kill two thirds of the world's population. It will take years for the world to recover enough to enable the Antichrist to take over. In fact, the Antichrist might even be the one who helps the world recover. If the Antichrist helps bring high-tech civilization back to the world, it certainly would make him famous and make the world grateful. But, I digress.
Those years will enable Israel to develop to spiritual maturity, so that the 144,000 men of Revelation 7 will be able to fulfill the task set for them. And, I am assuming that their ‘task’ is to spread the gospel throughout the world before and even during the rise of the Antichrist. That's a pretty big assumption, but since sharing the good news of Jesus Christ is at the very core of what it means to be a Christian...
The Main Point
The main point is that Israel MUST be saved before the coming of the Antichrist, and they must be saved for long enough to give 144 thousand men the time to gain a minimum level of spiritual maturity.
REASON FIVE – A Profoundly Spiritual Rebirth
The description of the Return of Jacob to God is profoundly spiritual. All the passages that refer to this moment in time describe what happened to you and me, when we became followers of Christ.
They will be reborn. Dry bones will live. The Holy Spirit will guide each and every one of them. They will become a new creature in Jesus Christ. And, their faith will be just like ours – not by sight, but by the Spirit. The only difference is that it will probably be stronger than ours.
Do you remember that I recommended that you read Romans 11?
Well, here is what Paul says about the Return of Jacob:
Now if their fall is riches for the world, and their failure riches for the Gentiles, how much more their fullness!
- Romans 11:12 (NKJV)
For if their being cast away is the reconciling of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?
- Romans 11:15 (NKJV)
For if you were cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and were grafted contrary to nature into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, who are natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree?
- Romans 11:24 (NKJV)
I can hear the Supersessionists howl all the way over here, where I live in Taiwan. But, since followers of 'replacement theology' are full of many other kinds of heresy, their outrage is music to my ears. But, Supersessionist outrage isn't the point. What matters is the incredible transformation of spiritually dead Israelis into fantastic followers of Christ.
The Jews will go from death to life, and it must come long before the Antichrist arrives. Trying to force their salvation into the time of the Great Tribulation just doesn't work.
I know that this goes against what popular Bible teachers have been saying, but there’s only one conclusion that we can make:
Israel MUST Be Saved Years BEFORE The Great Tribulation
To say otherwise would be to argue against a mountain of evidence.
So, think about my answers to those who would tell you that Israel will be saved just before the Antichrist comes, or at the return of Jesus:
- The standard of faith puts the requirement to prove otherwise on those who disagree
- Hebrews 8 and Galatians make it completely clear that Israel WILL NOT return to the sacrifice of bulls and goats, for their salvation
- Revelation 12 firmly indicates that Israel has been saved BEFORE the Antichrist arrives
- The sealing of the 144,000 show us that Israel MUST be saved BEFORE the Tribulation begins
- And then, the prophets in the Old Testament confirm that this will be a spiritual rebirth
The Demonstration Of God
There is one more thing that I want to add. It’s not a proof. But, it is a powerful reason.
With all the evil that is coming upon the world, it is easy to think that the Antichrist is about to arrive. But, that is not what the Bible says. The Bible says that Israel must be saved first, and it makes sense that this is true.
Remember that God does not send judgment without a warning. And, I cannot think of a greater demonstration of the existence of God – and of His power – than Ezekiel’s Fire and the salvation of Israel in Christ. It will be God’s way of showing the world – one last time – that He is God. God will show His power and His might, and the world will be left without an excuse when they reject Him and follow the Antichrist.
God always warns, and that warning will be more powerful than anything that we have ever seen.
It’s Coming Soon
All of the above – and more – tell me that we should expect the coming of Gog and Magog, the salvation of Israel and Ezekiel’s Fire several years before the Antichrist proclaims himself. So please take this to heart. This is not some intellectual exercise in esoteric theology that may never arrive.
Ezekiel’s Fire is as certain as tomorrow’s sunrise.
It won’t be here tomorrow, next week or next month. But, when I start to think in years… well …I must pause. I don’t know how many years we have to prepare, and I hope that we have a lot more than just years. But, I'm not willing to gamble on how much time we have.
© 2022 John Little. All rights reserved.
May God preserve the words that are true
and cast away those that are not.