Redemption Of The Land
by Hal Lindsey
On Monday, July 20th, “The 700 Club” began running installments of a documentary on Israel, hosted by Gordon Robertson, called “The Hope.” Installments will run daily through Friday, July 31st. “The Hope” tells about the birth of modern Israel. Gordon and his team have done an extraordinary job telling one of the great stories of the last two thousand years. It reminds us again that the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob keeps His word!
I have only seen parts of the series, so I can’t vouch for all of it, but what I’ve seen has been factual, insightful, and moving. CBN News has a long history of breaking down complex issues, and presenting them in a clear and accessible manner. And they’ve hit this one out of the park.
It’s true that Pat Robertson and I don’t see eye-to-eye on some important doctrinal issues regarding the Second Coming. In fact, just a couple of weeks ago he and a guest criticized me by name. But that’s okay. I don’t mind my name being associated with my teaching. The Body of Christ needs honest criticism and discussion.
Despite our differences, Pat and I share a love for Israel, and we both marvel to see God’s hand at work in history. Nothing shows that to this generation more clearly than the rebirth of Israel.
1 Peter 3:15 admonishes each one of us to “always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you.” [NKJV] There are many ways of giving such a defense including personal testimony, an examination of the Bible’s veracity, and the historical fact of Christ’s resurrection.
But do you ever wish God would do something for our generation that is as bold and undeniable as the parting of the Red Sea? He has!
The re-establishment of Israel as promised by God over 2500 years ago, is a miracle beyond calculating. From the days of Moses, God warned the nation that its continued sin would cause Him to disperse them as a people to places all over the world. For every other culture in history, such dispersal has been a death warrant. But, miraculously, Jews became part of those various cultures without being assimilated into oblivion.
Then, after two millennia, came the nation. In performing that miracle, God used Christians, Jews, atheists, and others. He used people of goodwill and those with evil intent. He used men as diverse as Harry Truman, Chaim Weizmann, and Adolf Hitler. But make no mistake. Israel is not their doing. It is the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes!
What a shame that so many Christians refuse to see modern Israel for the miracle that it is. By doing that, they deny the obvious. It’s like seeing the Red Sea part, seeing the people walk across on dry ground, then saying, “That must have been some wind.”
For Israel to exist today means that thousands of things had to happen in just the right way at just the right time. But that’s only part of the miracle. This series of thousands of improbable things happened in accordance with promises God made to ancient prophets thousands of years ago.
Those same prophets told of a coming Messiah. They said he would be born in Bethlehem to a virgin mother. He would be rejected by His own people, betrayed for exactly thirty pieces of silver, condemned at trial, and cruelly mocked. They described his crucifixion before crucifixion itself had been invented. They said his captors would gamble for his clothes, that He would be buried like a criminal in a rich man’s grave, and that He would rise from the dead. They said He would be called “Almighty God.”
Jesus perfectly fulfilled those prophecies and hundreds more. That fact cannot be explained in merely natural terms.
But Jesus has not yet fulfilled all prophecies regarding the Messiah. Ancient scholars knew that the prophets had described only one man, but it sounded like two. One would suffer and be rejected. The other would come in triumph, bringing peace to the world.
In Jesus, we see the answer to the dilemma. He came once to die for our sins. But He’s coming again to rule and reign. To deny it is to call Him a liar because He talked at length about His second coming and the signs that would surround it.
The greatest of those signs is the re-establishment of the nation of Israel. That happened in 1948. In 1967, Israel retook Jerusalem as its eternal capital. In other words, everything is happening as God said it would happen at the end of this age. We’re very close!
(If you missed the first few installments of “The Hope,” the CBN website offers a DVD or Blu-ray of the entire documentary for a donation of $10.)