Israel’s Land Promise and Its Place in Bible-Prophecy and History

Some say Israel has never fully experienced the fulfilment of the land-promises made to the Patriarchs, and that the fulfilment of it is still required in order to fulfil prophecy and to uphold God’s faithfulness.

But what would be the use to Israel of a divine land-promise, considering that the exact opposite of the promise has been the case for most of the past two thousands years, in fact for most of human history – if the promise will finally, fully come to pass only right at the end of time – right at the end of human civilisation – and not even for a single generation – according to popular, modern eschatology – before the nations again gather together against her, put an end to her newly-reinstituted system of sacrifices, and set up an abomination in her newly-rebuilt Temple, resulting in a repeat of its utter destruction, and in their recently-liberated city again being trampled underfoot, and her people once again deported all over the world?

And how can the predicted preaching of the Gospel occur after those events, if those events are synonymous with the coming of Christ and the end of the world?

If the preaching of the Gospel referred to there does not refer to the historic ministry of the Church, but refers instead to the future ministry of a fully-converted Israel, after the Church and the restraining Holy Spirit have been taken out of the world, then how could Jesus have had nothing at all to say to the Apostles about their’s and the Church’s future ministry, in the very context of a discussion about the future and their role in it?

There is an alternative: we can allow our paradigm to be shaped by the Word of God, where it says:

“There failed not ought of any good thing which the Lord had spoken unto the house of Israel; all came to pass” (Joshua 21:45).

Promises and prophecy regarding Israel were all faithfully fulfilled, and have never been explicitly repealed – it’s just that the extent to which Israel would sustain the experience of those promises was also subject to certain principles. Throughout Bible history we saw Israel’s enjoyment of the promises ebb and flow – but never without a cause.

Jesus made some predictions in this regard, for His generation, when He foretold of the destruction of the Temple and of Jerusalem – which all came to pass within the very timeframe given by Him. We also today see the Gospel of the Kingdom continuing to be preached as a testimony in all nations, just as Jesus also said.

The next event on the revealed prophetic calendar then, as far as we are to know, is the end. Not an end, but the end.

Israel and the Gentiles alike therefore have but one God-appointed work ahead of them, and that is to believe on Jesus Christ – and to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom – preach Him, and His Name – to every creature.

Jesus Christ is the summary of Bible-prophecy, therefore His Gospel and the promise of His coming ought to remain our focus ’til the end of the age.

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