Questions associated with a nuclear Iran thus come to the fore, as do questions associated with God’s plans for the region on the whole.
As much as Israel’s emergence is amply atested in Ezekiel 37:1-14, so, too, in 38:1-39:16 is regional angst associated with Israel’s emergence. Iran (Persia) is noted in 38:5, as are other present-day Muslim states in 38:1-6. It climaxes with God saying: “I will pour down torrents of rain, hailstones and burning sulfur” in v. 22.
Sounds a bit nuclear, does it not?
If Isaiah’s famous promise in 11:6 about the “wolf and the lamb lying down together” is to be given any credence whatsoever . . . the cessation of Israeli-Arab hostilities and unification is a must.
Musings aside, mindful as we all are of Israel’s re-emergence and prominence in biblical prophecy, and interested as we are in that State’s consequential security and stability, we must realize that the prophesied and longed-for State, and state- of-affairs, can only be realized with the participation of the sovereign nation-states surrounding Israel—and not just their defeat.
To speak of Israel’s eventual success and subsequent security, without addressing the nature and structure of the State’s inter-relationships with surrounding Arab peoples, is to ignore the social, economic, and political realities that give rise to any and every sovereign state’s successes. Beyond this, students of Bible prophecy are well served to consider God’s plan to unite all the Hebrew peoples, and to subsequently prosper both the Jews in the modern State and the Arabs who dwell in the restored State’s shadow.
In 47:1-5, the same prophet who both envisioned Israel’s miraculous rise
and associated regional conflicts then depicted the emergence of healing water from the Temple-proper. Te water not only brings prosperity to the Hebrews who line the river’s banks, but in v. 8, Ezekiel notes how “this water flows toward the eastern region, and goes down into the Arabah, where it enters the Dead Sea”—i.e., to the dry lands just east of Jerusalem. Arab economies are restored in v. 9, where it says, “everything will live,” and be “healed” in v. 12. Later, in v. 22 we read: “foreigners residing among you [in Israel] . . . You are to consider them as native-born Israelites; along with you they
are to be alloted an inheritance among the tribes of Israel.”
Sounds like peace and restoration, does it not?
Because a literal and careful reading of the Ezekiel story includes Israel and the surrounding nations, I believe a treatment of Bible prophecy should include God’s plan for all the people in the region.
If Isaiah’s famous promise in 11:6 about the “wolf and the lamb lying down together” is to be given any credence whatsoever, as with his saying the “earth [eventually] will be filled with the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea” in 11:9, the cessation of Israeli-Arab hostilities and unification is a must.
Tough disconcerting, both Israel’s rise and the surrounding nations pressing for her demise fit within my understanding of Bible prophecy, and give rise to the notion that we are living
Jewish Voice Today 19
in the Last Days now. Are these the last of the Last Days? Whether they are for the world, or not, will be for my readers to judge.
Staring at sixty (soon) as I am, I know I am living in my last days—or later days, anyway. With all that is happening in the world, and with all that is stated in the Word, I think we’re a whole lot closer to the final countdown than we were some years ago, when I began my journey with the Messiah of Israel—One whom I’ve learned is also destined to be the Messiah of the nations, though they don’t all know it yet.
Dr. Jeffrey Seif is a graduate of the North Texas Regional Police Academy, and holds a master’s degree and doctorate in theology and ministry from Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas. Jeff has written many books and articles, and is known throughout the Messianic Jewish Movement. Professor Seif serves on the faculty of Kings University/Seminary, Israel College of the Bible, Christ for the Nations Institute, the Messianic Jewish Theological Institute, and the Messianic Jewish Bible Institute.
| Page 2
| Page 3
| Page 4
| Page 5
| Page 6
| Page 7
| Page 8
| Page 9
| Page 10
| Page 11
| Page 12
| Page 13
| Page 14
| Page 15
| Page 16
| Page 17
| Page 18
| Page 19
| Page 20
| Page 21
| Page 22
| Page 23
| Page 24
| Page 25
| Page 26
| Page 27
| Page 28
| Page 29
| Page 30
| Page 31
| Page 32