“It’s raining rockets”
Two nights ago missiles and bombs rained down on Israel as well as Gaza. According to a report in news.com.au online yesterday it said Israel was bombarded by more than 300 rockets, Israel has now struck back, blasting several major Hamas sites in the Gaza Strip. At least two Israelis and three Palestinians are dead. According to the report “the skies of Israel lit up overnight as missiles flared upwards to intercept incoming rockets from the Gaza Strip. Explosions rippled through the troubled Middle East region as Palestinian liberation group Hamas attempted to exact revenge for Israel’s killing of one of its leaders at the weekend. In response, Israeli air strikes in Gaza have so far killed three Palestinians and destroyed a Hamas TV building after a barrage of rocket fire from the enclave, as renewed violence threatened to derail efforts to end months of unrest. Israel’s military said it had struck more than 70 militant sites in response to over 300 rockets fired from the Hamas-run territory. Officials say missile defences had intercepted dozens of the rockets from Gaza and most others fell in open areas, though some hit houses and other civilian structures. Medics reported around 20 Israelis were wounded.”
Wounding and binding
In the light of God’s Word these events remind us again of what the prophet Hosea said concerning Israel’s national and spiritual restoration; “Come, let us return to the LORD. For He has torn us to pieces, but He will heal us; He has wounded us, but He will bind us up. After two days He will revive us; on the third day He will raise us up, that we may live in His presence.” (Hosea 6:1-2) God is a Holy God and a jealous God in that he desires unbroken fellowship with His people and requires them to love Him and reject all other ‘lovers.’ Israel as a nation at present is a secular, materialistic, hedonistic nation that has a lot of religious activity but not many are believers in the Messiah our Lord Jesus. Having said this there are many more Jewish believers in the Lord Jesus the Messiah in Israel today than probably since the 1st Century. According to a recent survey, there are about 25,000-30,000 Jewish believers in Jesus in Israel. God Himself is the great physician and the one who not only brings physical healing but also spiritual healing as well. He is the master surgeon of all surgeons. Humanly speaking for a surgeon to operate successfully he must first cut out the cause of the sickness before he applies healing and the bandaging.
Aliens and strangers
Israel as a people are still labouring under the curse of the law as set out in Torah in Deuteronomy Chapter 28 and they are certainly not under a blessing. The blessings were for obedience to the LORD and His Word but the curses for disobedience. God’s Word has not changed and neither does God change, howvere He always remembers and honours His covenants. (Malachi 3:6) How He has acted in the past is how he will act in the future. According to the prophet Ezekiel in chapter 37 the prophet foretells the national and spiritual restoration of Israel in the last days. In verse 1-8 he foretold their physical restoration to the land of Israel in the last days which occurred in 1948 and that they would be established in the land but still be there in unbelief in their Messiah. Their spiritual restoration is yet to happen in the Land of Israel and we see this also foretold in Ezekiel Chapter 37: verses 9-28. At present Israel is a nation are “aliens and strangers to their own covenants of promise” but this will change when they have a revelation of their Messiah and his atoning work at the cross.
The ‘surgeons’ skill
At present, Israel’s leaders are still “leaning on Egypt that splintered reed of a staff that pierces a man’s hand when he leans upon it.” This is where Israel is today and God is using applied pressure by allowing their enemies on all sides to afflict them, not to destroy them, but to bring them to the point of desperation as a nation where they will call out to Him “to deliver then from all of their enemies and out of the hands of all who hate them.” At present God’s refining process continues unabated and he is turning up the heat of the furnace because He wants them spiritually purified and reconciled to Himself, a reconciliation that is only possible through their Messiah and older brother in the flesh our Lord Jesus. All of these afflictions are the divine surgeon’s knife doing its divine and perfect work and in a very real sense the nation is being torn as Hosea predicted. And so Hosea says; “Come; let us return to the LORD. For He has torn us to pieces, but He will heal us; He has wounded us, but He will bind us up.” In other words God is operating on Israel to bring about their spiritual healing and calling them to return to Him. The operation is a painful process, not only for Israel, but also for the LORD who loves them dearly and has bled and died for them in and through the Messiah His one and only eternal begotten Son.
The refining goes on
However according to the prophet Jeremiah Israel must first pass through God’s refining crucible of the Time of Jacob’s Trouble but they will be saved out of it but not from it. (Jeremiah 30:1-9) Israel’s national and spiritual restoration is directly linked to the Resurrection of the Messiah our Lord Jesus and when they are confronted by a situation that looks like they will be annihilated He will come back and “they will look upon (to) Him whom they have pierced and mourn for Him” with tears of repentance, sorrow and joy and return to Him with all of their hearts. At this time they will be spiritually resurrected as a nation and share in His resurrection. As it says; “on the third day He will raise us up, that we may live in His presence.” Scripture is clear that all who come to the Messiah, whether they are Jew or Gentile, must first come to the foot of that old rugged cross and allow the Holy Spirit to put to death the deeds of the flesh and apply the cleansing blood of the Messiah to the doorposts and lintels of their hearts. It is a spiritual crucifixion that one must have if they are to enter into the spiritual resurrection. The blessed Holy Spirit wounds before He heals.
The curse is broken!
For any Israeli who comes to faith in the Messiah our Lord Jesus it will be for them “life from the dead!” They will see for the first time that the curse of the law was broken at the cross and at the foot of that old rugged cross and by faith in their Messiah, know experientially that the curse of the law over their life has been broken. The repentance is the tearing but the blood of the Messiah followed by the regeneration and renewal of the blessed Holy Spirit is the healing. First comes the repentance and then the refreshing, it is not the other way around! (Acts 3:19) For that Israeli who has the revelation that the Lord Jesus is his or her Passover Lamb sacrificed for them Isaiah chapter 53 will take on a completely new meaning and relevance to their daily life. Indeed when any Israeli turns back to God through the Messiah our Lord Jesus the veil over their heart is removed, the stony heart of unbelief and a partial hardening is dissolved by the blood of the Messiah applied to their life by the Holy Spirit. This is why God is allowing Israel as a nation to experience these afflictions today. He still has everything under control including what He allows Hamas to do.
David their King
The day is coming when Israel will “possess their possession” and “possess the gates of their enemies” and “swoop down upon the shoulder of the Philistines (Gaza)” Their Inheritance, their “everlasting possession” will be to inherit all of the Land of Israel from the Wadi of Egypt to the River Euphrates in the Millennial and Messianic Kingdom of the Messiah our Lord Jesus. In that day “David their King will reign over them” from Jerusalem and in Him will be Israel’s glory and the subjugation of the nations to Him who will be “ruling them with His Rod of Iron.” Indeed today in all of Israel’s conflicts and afflictions He is wounding and tearing but not to destroy Israel but to bring about their healing through the blood and righteousness of their Messiah our Lord Jesus that He might bind them up and bring them into the blessings of the New Covenant He has cut in the blood of the Messiah with the House of Israel and with the House of Judah. This is the everlasting Covenant which can never be broken or annulled and assures all who believe in the Lord Jesus for salvation to share in His resurrection for time and for eternity.
In His resurrection lies the hope of Israel and for the faithful Church which, by extension and inclusion, are part of the Commonwealth of Israel. Together as “one new man in the Messiah” they are destined to share in the blessings of the New Covenant God has made with Israel and to co-reign with Him on earth in His Messianic Millennial Kingdom. In the day when Israel as a nation experiences “life from the dead” they will say unashamedly before the very throne of God, the Holy of Holies and before the mercy seat in heaven marked with the blood of the Messiah; “Come, let us return to the LORD. For He has torn us to pieces, but He will heal us; He has wounded us, but He will bind us up. After two days He will revive us; on the third day He will raise us up, that we may live in His presence.” (Hosea 6:1-2) This is Israel’s eternal inheritance because “the gifts and call of God is irrevocable!” (Romans 11:29)