Israel in the News

You can’t turn the television on to listen to the news without Israel being in the headlines. As she is found geographically in the center of civilization, so she is the center of all Biblical prophecy and world news.
As Israel goes, so goes the world.

The golden key that unlocks the door and lets you into the anteroom of history is Genesis 12:1-3. You must grasp this verse, or you will never understand where history is going. This is the NorthStar you must keep your eyes upon, otherwise you will be like a ship without a rudder or sail lost on a very stormy sea of history.

I enjoyed reading historians like Toynbee, Durant, Spengler, McCullough etcetera. But they miss the target of where history is going and where it will end. The reason being that they neglect the Bible as a book of history and prophecy. I once sought consolation in what they had to say but found none. “Give me no guess for my dying pillow.” Speculation is a lumpy pillow, and historical contradictions make it a thorny pillow.

Genesis 12:1-3 reads, “Now the LORD had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, From your family And from your father’s house To a land that I will show you. I will make you a great nation; I will bless you And make your name great; And you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”

This is both a personal, national, and world shaking promise that must have shaken Abraham down to his sandals. This major turning point in history was made some two thousand years before Christ’s birth. Who could believe such a promise could be fulfilled unless it was spoken by God? It is either true or one of the loudest, hollowest shibboleth lies ever made.

Notice the promise of Land in the covenant. “Now the LORD had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, From your family And from your father’s house To a Land that I will show you.”

Abraham was not in his physical prime when God commanded him to pack up and leave his comfortable life style. To strike out for a new land he had never stepped foot on before was a colossal act of obedience. However, at age 75 he packed up and started trekking towards the promised land of Canaan. God did not give him all the details but in faith Abraham obeyed the voice of God. It was only later, after Abraham had acted, that God provided the details of that land. God told Abraham that one day his seed would inherit all the land between the Nile and Euphrates rivers, (Genesis 15:18).

Secondly, God also promised Abraham that a multitude of descendants would fill the land. In Genesis 12: 2, 7 he said, “And I will make you a great nation.” … “I will Greatly Multiply your seed as the stars of the heavens and as the sand which is on the seashore.” God fulfilled this promise physically and spiritually. From the twelve tribes of Israel came a physical nation of millions. But even greater through faith in Jesus Christ all believers are the spiritual descendants of Abraham. Who can number them?

How amazing that God made this promise to Abraham when his wife Sarah was old and past the age of childbearing. “What is impossible with man is possible with God.”

Thirdly, God also promised Abraham a blessing that would Bless not only Israel but the Whole World. In Genesis 12:3 God promised that through his descendants he would bring a savior who would bless the World. “In you all the families of the Earth shall be blessed.” That savior was Jesus Christ. Jesus was a physical descendent of Abraham as are all Jews to this day.

Galatians 3:6 tells us, “Even so, Abraham believed God and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.” In Old Testament times believers converted the same way they do today by God’s grace through faith. Abraham looked forward to Christ for salvation, as we look back to Him.

Fourthly. God’s Promise to Abraham and his seed is Eternal’ It is an everlasting covenant. Genesis 3:15, “All the land which you see, I will give it to you and your descendants Forever.” God placed no end date on this promise. It is unconditional and unbreakable. People make promises and break them due to unforeseeable circumstance, even death, But not so with God. His promises are unbreakable, and eternal. Time will never camcel them out.

It is interesting to note that people made covenants in Abraham’s day by each person killing an animal, splitting it in two and dividing its parts into two lines. The two covenanters would walk side-by-side through the pieces holding a torch promising not to break their covenant. The strength of the covenant depended on both parties keeping their word, obedience. But as we all know that people can break their promises as easy as pie crusts.

But when God made his promise to Abraham something very significant happened. God did not have Abraham take a torch and walk with him through the slain animals piece. But God only, alone, walked through the pieces with a torch. In other words the strength of the Abrahamic Covenant is based not on Abraham’s faithfulness but on God’s faithfulness alone. God’s promise to Israel does not depend upon Israel’s obedience but on God’s faithfulness. (Genesis 15:9-21)

What does all of this have to do with Present day Israel?

One thing to notice is that to this day, and even in King David’s day Israel never did own all their promised land from the Nile to the Euphrates. At this moment they own but a thin slice of it. At this moment God’s kingdom is an invisible kingdom ruling in the hearts of all born again Christians, Jews and gentiles alike. But one day when Jesus returns he will take his rightful place in Jerusalem where he will sit on the literal throne of King David, and Israel’s borders will stretch from the Nile to the Euphrates, and the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea.

For the literal fulfillment of that prophecy we are still waiting.


De Robert Bryant