A summary of the Bible Hour presentation at the Christadelphian Hall, Blackpool Street, Burton-upon-Trent on Sunday 23rd October 2010.
This blog uses Bible references. If you don’t have a Bible, you can find the Bible text online.
“Some people like the Jews, and some do not. But no one can deny the fact that they are, without question, the most formidable race that has ever appeared in the world.” (Sir Winston Churchill)
God said that the Jews are the evidence of his existence (Isaiah 43:10).
They are his chosen people (Deuteronomy 7:6) – not for any merit of theirs, but because God loves them and made promises to their ancestors Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
Deuteronomy chapter 28 is a promise of what would happen if the Jews were obedient to God, and what would happen if they were disobedient. For example verses 63-67 foretell their scattering and persecution. Jesus gave detail of this in Luke 21:24.
When the Jews committed their greatest act of disobedience, killing Jesus God’s son, they brought these curses upon themselves. The nation was destroyed in AD70 and the prophecies have been coming true ever since.
However, prophecies such as Jeremiah 30:10-11 foretell the return of the Jews from their dispersion.
In the late 19th Century the Zionist movement came to prominence. This was a secular and religious movement with the aim of bringing the Jews back to their homeland. In 1948, the state of Israel was re-established after nearly 2,000 years.
“We cannot deny that [this] is an extraordinary historical achievement.” (Sir Hugh Trevor Roper)
Through the centuries there had been many attempts to find a homeland for the Jews – e.g. Kenya, Madagascar and Vietnam were all suggested. But the prophecies, e.g. Ezekiel 11:17 and Ezekiel chapter 37, had said that they would return to the land of Israel.
“The Jew is eternal. He is the embodiment of eternity.” (Leo Tolstoy)
“What is the secret of the Jew’s immortality?” (Mark Twain)
The secret is the fact that the Jews are God’s people. Not through any merit of their own – the nation is by and large as stubborn and disobedient now as it has ever been – but because of God’s everlasting promise.
The Jews’ survival and return to statehood has been a miracle. They are a witness that God is at work in today’s world.
The Bible goes on to tell what’s going to happen in the future, and the part that the modern Israeli state has yet to play in his purpose …