Signs of the End Times? Israel in the Promised Land
By Dianne E. Butts –
In December, we talked about the prophecies given and then fulfilled in the birth of Jesus. Today, many people are wondering about other prophecies and whether or not we are seeing them fulfilled right before our very eyes today. Could the things we see going on in our world today be fulfillment of “End Times” prophecies? This year, let’s take a look at some of the “end time” or “last days” prophecies given in the Bible and explore how they might be coming true right now.
From my experience, it’s hard to tell which is the majority: those who believe we are living in the last days or those who believe we are not. Often when the topic of end-times prophecy comes up, someone says they believe the Lord is coming back, but it might not be for hundreds or a thousand more years.
I don’t think so. I think it’s going to be soon. Very soon. In fact, I think it’s going to be soon enough that the generation alive right now will see it. Since you’re reading this—that means you!
Why do I believe it will be that soon? Mostly because of one Sign.
Let me ask you—if you had to choose one prophecy you think is the most revealing that we are nearing the End Times, what would it be? Jesus said many things would happen in Matthew 24 and elsewhere. One thing Jesus said was that this world would be worse than ever before: “For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again” (Matthew 24:21). So are we there yet?
To tell the signs of the times, or where we are on God’s prophetic clock, we need a Sign that is specific.
So my choice for the most revealing Sign is that Israel is back in the Promised Land.
How long has it been since Israel was in the Promised Land and governing itself? This note is in the NIV Study Bible (1984), page 1319 (on the map): “Continued political rivalries in Judea brought the intervention of the Roman general Pompey in 63 B.C. This event signaled the end of Jewish political independence, except for periods of brief autonomy during the ill-fated revolts of the first and second Christian centuries.”
Israel has not been its own nation in the land God gave the Israelites since 63 B.C.! Until—do you know when? The answer has occurred within the lifetimes of many living among us today—the World War II generation.
God showed the prophet Ezekiel the valley of dry bones in Ezekiel 37. God asked the prophet, “Son of man, can these bones live?”
The prophet wisely answered, “O Sovereign, LORD, you alone know” (Ezekiel 37:3). Then God showed the dead bones being put back together and flesh being put back on them and them coming to life once again: “So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army. Then he said to me: ‘Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel’” (Ezekiel 37:10-11).
So again, do you know when Israel once again became a nation? Hint: It was very soon after the end of World War II, after Hitler tried but failed to annihilate God’s chosen people, the Jews.
Israel once again became a nation: May 14, 1948.
Now that’s specific!
This is one Sign that is absolutely unique to our time. No one can argue saying this Sign has not been fulfilled.
What do you think? Are we in, or nearing, the End Times?