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Lessons from Israel Part 2

Israel is a small country in the Middle East that was not a country with any recognition until 1948.  World War 2 had just concluded, in which the Jews had suffered the atrocities of the Holocaust.  The Jewish population in the world had been seriously reduced by numbers as high as 10 million when all the deaths were counted.  The suffering and damage to Jewish families was even more devastating.  It is not something any sane sensible person, including myself, wants to think about. However, sometimes we need to face history and try to learn the lessons of good and evil from it so we can, hopefully, pursue the good.  There are many unbelievable evils going on in the world today like child trafficking, the promotion of abortion, sexual perversion poisoning our younger generation with drugs and sexual perversion and gang crimes in our cities to unprecedented levels.  It seems that our judges and justice systems have lost their ability to administer proper justice.  I want to refer back to Israel for some do’s and don’ts lessons.  I believe we can all learn something very important from Israel because God allowed the Israel nation to be the object nation lesson we can all learn valuable principles and lessons.  Israel is like a big 4000-year object lesson for the world to learn lessons of do’s and don’ts.    

To clarify this object lesson, the inspired Bible letter to the church at Corinth gives us an explanation about the God-ordained purpose for Israel. 1 Corinthian 10:1-12 outlines the history benefits from Israel’s failures and successes.  I heard it said one time: “The only thing we really learn from history is that we do not learn.”  I would surmise that is a true statement and there is no more valuable lesson of history that we can look at as the one Israel gives us.   In fact, this New Testament verse in 1 Corinthians 10:11 explains it well: “Now all these things happened to them for examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come” (KJV). The Amplified Bible says it like this: “Now these things befell them (Israel) by way of a figure [as an example and warning to us]; they were written to admonish and fit us for right action by good instruction, we in whose days the ages have reached their climax ((their consummation and concluding period). Let’s see if we can learn some lessons about the history and validity of these lessons from the nation of Israel.  

In the last article I said if there is one word that declares the Bible is true and genuine, I would choose the word Israel.  God has fulfilled many promises to Israel as a nation and there are still many yet to be fulfilled.  He has chosen Israel for many reasons but one of their tasks was to instruct the world regarding Himself, His truth, His promises and His plan for the ages.  God’s plan will be fulfilled in detail as it has been in the past and present and will be in the future plan for Israel.  In the law, which God delivered to Israel through their great leader Moses, he told them that if they developed a real love relationship with Him and followed his law and worship principles as their number one priority, then God would bless them. If they disobeyed, they would be cursed (read Deuteronomy 27-28).  God told them in exact detail what would happen if they rebelled and forgot Him, the one who had made them a nation.  Well, the sad commentary is that they did rebel more than they obeyed and it is recorded all through the painful history of the Jewish nation the consequences of their disobedience and rebellion.  In the bible record, we see often in the history of Israel that when they forgot God, terrible consequences came but when they repented, turned from their sin and followed God, blessings came to them as well.  This is the example God wants to convey to us: If we listen to God’s word, follow him and make him a priority in our daily life, we will be blessed.   

We also learn the lesson of the Jewish Messiah arriving exactly to the day and being crucified on the day predicted in Old Testament prophecy.   Jesus Christ was a Jew. His coming to the earth as a future king for Israel had been predicted from the book of Genesis and many other places in the Old Testament. Israel desperately wanted him to come and be a king, but on their terms, not the terms outlined in the Scriptures. Just like us. We want God to be God on our terms, not His.  But let’s not make the same mistake as Israel. The nation of Israel rejected Him as their promised Messiah and to this day still reject Him. You see, they wanted a national Messiah but he offered himself as a personal Messiah first.  Today, he offers himself to you and me and to the world as Messiah or Saviour but when people reject him there are always consequences.  People want to accept him on their terms. It may mean wearing a cross around their neck but never letting the cross affect their heart which is below their neck.  Israel has suffered unbelievable consequences for the rejection of the truth and of  Jesus Christ as Messiah.  We will suffer unbelievable consequences too if we reject the message of the gospel, which is that Jesus died to save us from our sins.   The gospel is a message of good news to a fallen, cursed world.  God will make sure we all get an opportunity to receive Him at different intervals in our life while on this earth. Perhaps this article is one of those intervals for you?   

When Jesus was being led to the crucifixion on Calvary with his body battered, beaten, covered in blood after his scourging, the small contingent following Him were weeping and crying.  He stopped the procession and turned to them and made this statement: “But Jesus turning to them said, “Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children. For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they will say, blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bore, and the paps which never gave suck. Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, fall on us; and to the hills, cover us” (Luke 23:28, 29,30). 

Jesus was making a statement that there was going to be consequences and great suffering for what they were doing.  He was predicting that within approximately 35 years the most powerful military force in the world—which was Rome—would come to totally destroy Jerusalem and cities of the province of Judah. This happened in 70 A.D., in which over 1 million Jews died.  The Jewish historian Josephus records the events and says the Jerusalem streets were covered in blood and dead bodies.  The Roman soldiers had no mercy on young or old. The famous Jewish temple was totally destroyed and never rebuilt. It was the beginning of consequences that the Jewish people have endured for the last 2000 years, including the Holocaust. 

That’s a lot of sad history but I want to end this article on a good note. The best is yet to come for Israel.  God is not finished with that nation, even though it will go through some very difficult times yet in the near future.  Israel will once again be in the full blessing and recognition as the most honoured and favoured nation on earth.  Israel’s borders will extend from the Euphrates River in Iraq to the Nile River in Egypt.  Israel will once again have a great influence on the world and all nations will recognize it as such.  The beginning of this development began in 1948 when the United Nations recognized, for the first time in 2000 years, that Israel would be a nation again. May 14, 1948 was a great day for Israel. Since that time Jews from all over the world have been returning to the promised land.  Since 1948 there has been great opposition to this internationally recognized statehood event with several wars fought against them. Even as I write this article there is a new attack of rockets from the enemy which is the worst rocket barrage since 2014.   The world is actually witnessing the final days of this age when Israel will be attacked and despised by her enemies.  Soon the Messiah whom Israel rejected and crucified will return as King of Kings over the entire world.   My advice is: Let’s learn from Israel’s mistakes. To be continued….

 Let’s listen to instructions from the Bible and put Christ as first priority in our lives.  You cannot do that without believing.  We would like to help you learn how to do that by tuning into our Live Stream services:

You can also get used to attending church by attending our Live Stream services each Sunday at 11:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on our web site at www.pabaptist.ca or call 306-961-9866.  We have a Christian Growth Class on Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m.  You can join by Zoom. Please call or email for the code.   God bless you all until next week. Remember, God can change everything but it starts with you deciding and believing!  Nothing will change until you do that but great things will happen for you when you do!

The content of this article is solely the personal opinions of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Prince Albert Shopper.

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Wednesday August 4, 2021