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Israel at 60 - 2) The Jews - God's true witnesses


Published on - The second of a four part series exploring Israel and its significant position in the world. Having looked at how the land of Israel came to be of importance in the first presentation, we move on to consider the people of Israel, how the nation was born, and how events throughout their history have provided amazing evidence as to the existence of God and of his purpose.

The Powerpoint slides can be downloaded from our website.

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Israel at 60 - 2) The Jews - God's true witnesses

  1. 1. 1948 – 2008 ISRAEL AT 60 2) The Jews – God’s true witnesses
  2. 2. <ul><li>1. All we say is based on the Bible – the word of God </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The Jews are a ‘witness’ that this is a fact </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2. We are not celebrating Israel’s achievements, they are not a perfect nation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The fact that the Jews are not a perfect, powerful nation is what makes them such a reliable witness </li></ul></ul>Links with 1. Israel – God’s chosen land
  3. 3. <ul><li>A: witness noun 1 a person who sees an event take place. 2 a person giving sworn testimony to a court of law or the police. 3 a person who is present at the signing of a document and signs it themselves to confirm this. 4 (witness to) evidence or proof of . 5 open profession of one’s religious faith through words or actions. </li></ul>Q: What is a witness?
  4. 4. Why do we say the Jews are ‘evidence or proof of’ God? Isaiah 43:1, 10-12 But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine . 10 Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD , and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me , and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. 11 I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour. 12 I have declared, and have saved, and I have shewed, when there was no strange [other] god among you: therefore ye are my witnesses , saith the LORD, that I am God . God tells us the Jews are his witnesses
  5. 5. Why do we say the Jews are ‘evidence or proof of’ God? Deuteronomy 7:6-9 For thou art an holy people unto the LORD thy God: the LORD thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth. 7 The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people : 8 But because the LORD loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers,.. 9 Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations; A small and fragile nation are a better witness than a great nation
  6. 6. The Septuagint
  7. 7. Israel’s fate prophesied through Moses (~1500BC) Deuteronomy 28:1-2 And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the LORD thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: 2 And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God. This accurately foretold the fortunes of the Jews Deuteronomy 28:15 But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee:
  8. 9. 1892BC - Abraham Genesis 15:13 And he said unto Abram, Know of a surety that thy seed shall be a stranger in a land that is not their's, and shall serve them; and they shall afflict them four hundred years ; Prophecy: For 400 years the Jews would be strangers in a foreign land
  9. 11. 1492BC - Moses Deuteronomy 7:8 But because the LORD loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the LORD brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt . Prophecy fulfilled: After 400 years, Israel delivered from Egypt by God Exodus 3:7-8 And the LORD said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows; 8 And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey ; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites.
  10. 12. ~600BC - Jeremiah Jeremiah 25:2-9 2 The which Jeremiah the prophet spake unto all the people of Judah, and to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, 4 And the LORD hath sent unto you all his servants the prophets, rising early and sending them ; but ye have not hearkened, nor inclined your ear to hear. 5 They said, Turn ye again now every one from his evil way , and from the evil of your doings, and dwell in the land that the LORD hath given unto you and to your fathers for ever and ever: 6 And go not after other gods to serve them, and to worship them, and provoke me not to anger with the works of your hands; and I will do you no hurt. 7 Yet ye have not hearkened unto me, saith the LORD; that ye might provoke me to anger with the works of your hands to your own hurt. 8 Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Because ye have not heard my words, 9 Behold, I will send and take all the families of the north, saith the LORD, and Nebuchadrezzar the king of Babylon, my servant, and will bring them against this land, and against the inhabitants thereof, and against all these nations round about, and will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, and an hissing, and perpetual desolations . Prophecy: Israel would be taken by the king of Babylon
  11. 13. 606BC - Jehoiachin 2Kings 24:11-14 11 And Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came against the city, and his servants did besiege it. 12 And Jehoiachin the king of Judah went out to the king of Babylon, he, and his mother, and his servants, and his princes, and his officers: and the king of Babylon took him in the eighth year of his reign . 13 And he carried out thence all the treasures of the house of the LORD, and the treasures of the king's house, and cut in pieces all the vessels of gold which Solomon king of Israel had made in the temple of the LORD, as the LORD had said. 14 And he carried away all Jerusalem, and all the princes, and all the mighty men of valour, even ten thousand captives , and all the craftsmen and smiths: none remained, save the poorest sort of the people of the land. Prophecy Fulfilled: Israel were taken captive to Babylon
  12. 15. ~600BC - Jeremiah Jeremiah 25:11-12 And this whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment; and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years . 12 And it shall come to pass, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king of Babylon, and that nation, saith the LORD, for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans, and will make it perpetual desolations. Jeremiah 29:10 For thus saith the LORD, That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place. Prophecy: Israel’s captivity in Babylon would only last 70 years
  13. 16. 536BC - Cyrus Ezra 1:1-5 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying, 2 Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, The LORD God of heaven hath given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and he hath charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. 3 Who is there among you of all his people? his God be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah , and build the house of the LORD God of Israel, (he is the God,) which is in Jerusalem. 4 And whosoever remaineth in any place where he sojourneth, let the men of his place help him with silver, and with gold, and with goods, and with beasts, beside the freewill offering for the house of God that is in Jerusalem. 5 Then rose up the chief of the fathers of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests, and the Levites, with all them whose spirit God had raised, to go up to build the house of the LORD which is in Jerusalem. Prophecy fulfilled: Cyrus invites the Jews back into Israel 70 years later
  14. 18. Moses (~1500BC) Deuteronomy 28:25 The LORD shall cause thee to be smitten before thine enemies: thou shalt go out one way against them, and flee seven ways before them: and shalt be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth. Deuteronomy 28:63-66 And it shall come to pass, that as the LORD rejoiced over you to do you good, and to multiply you; so the LORD will rejoice over you to destroy you, and to bring you to nought; and ye shall be plucked from off the land whither thou goest to possess it. 64 And the LORD shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other ; and there thou shalt serve other gods, which neither thou nor thy fathers have known, even wood and stone. 65 And among these nations shalt thou find no ease, neither shall the sole of thy foot have rest: but the LORD shall give thee there a trembling heart, and failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind: 66 And thy life shall hang in doubt before thee ; and thou shalt fear day and night, and shalt have none assurance of thy life: Prophecy: Israel were to be scattered among all countries of the earth
  15. 19. Jesus Luke 21:24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. Prophecy: Israel were to be scattered among all countries of the earth
  16. 21. Titus AD70 Deuteronomy 28:53 And thou shalt eat the fruit of thine own body , the flesh of thy sons and of thy daughters, which the LORD thy God hath given thee, in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee: Prophecy Fulfilled: Jerusalem was destroyed and the Jews dispersed among all countries of the earth Micah 3:12 Therefore shall Zion for your sake be plowed as a field , and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of the forest.
  17. 24. 600BC Jeremiah & Ezekiel Jeremiah 31:10 Hear the word of the LORD, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him , and keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock. Jeremiah 32:37 Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in mine anger, and in my fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place , and I will cause them to dwell safely: Prophecy: The Jews would one day be re-gathered in Israel Ezekiel 36:24 For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land .
  18. 25. 2008
  19. 31. <ul><li>1. They retained their identity and have not integrated into other countries of the world </li></ul><ul><li>2. The land was there to repossess, and they have retained it </li></ul>Two extraordinary facts concerning Israel’s re-gathering after 1800 years of dispersion
  20. 32. Two extraordinary facts… the Jews have retained their identity and their land
  21. 34. Two extraordinary facts… the Jews have retained their identity and their land
  22. 35. Two extraordinary facts… the Jews have retained their identity and their land
  23. 36. Two extraordinary facts… the Jews have retained their identity and their land
  24. 37. Two extraordinary facts… the Jews have retained their identity and their land
  25. 38. Two extraordinary facts… the Jews have retained their identity and their land “ Egypt and Syria should have beaten Israel, but they were inexplicably prevented. The Egyptian high command gave the first Egyptian division that crossed the Canal 15 hours to take the Bar-Lev line. They took it in just 5 hours, and then halted. If they had swept on, the whole of central Israel would have been at their mercy. One Egyptian commander said later, “I was half an hour’s drive from the Mitla Pass, and there was nothing to stop me.”
  26. 39. Two extraordinary facts… the Jews have retained their identity and their land “ The miracle is that we ever win. The Arab nations occupy 8% of the surface of the world. They possess half of the known oil resources and are immensely rich. They have more men in their armies than we have people in our state, and in addition the Russians have built them a great war machine” Shimon Perez as Israeli Minister of defense
  27. 41. The only explanation of the miracle of the Jews... Jeremiah 30:11 For I am with thee, saith the LORD, to save thee:..
  28. 42. More online <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Listen again to this presentation </li></ul><ul><li>Articles on other Bible topics </li></ul><ul><li>Details of forthcoming talks (God Willing) </li></ul>