The Messiah in the Old Testament By Chuck Missler We frequently quote St. Augustine’s observation,…
The Good News in Bible Prophecy
By Chris Schang
Despite the gloom and doom some people associate with the last days, not all the end times signs are negative. One of the things that Jesus told his disciples was the Gospel, or Good News, would reach all the nations in the world before his Second Coming. This was illustrated in the following verses:
Mat 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
Mark 13:10 And the gospel must first be published among all nations.
The Lord Jesus also predicted that the Good News would be preached not only to the Gentiles but also to the Jews before his Second Coming. The Lord knew that through the preaching of the Gospel and through the future tribulation, that the Jews would eventually have a full national conversion which would fulfill many of the Old Testament prophecies. An example would be the following verse from Ezekiel 36:22-32:
Eze 36:22 Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; I do not [this] for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name’s sake, which ye have profaned among the heathen, whither ye went.
Eze 36:23 And I will sanctify my great name, which was profaned among the heathen, which ye have profaned in the midst of them; and the heathen shall know that I [am] the LORD, saith the Lord GOD, when I shall be sanctified in you before their eyes.
Eze 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.
Eze 36:25 Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.
Eze 36:26 A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
Eze 36:27 And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do [them].
Eze 36:28 And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.
Eze 36:29 I will also save you from all your uncleannesses: and I will call for the corn, and will increase it, and lay no famine upon you.
Eze 36:30 And I will multiply the fruit of the tree, and the increase of the field, that ye shall receive no more reproach of famine among the heathen.
Eze 36:31 Then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings that [were] not good, and shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and for your abominations.
Eze 36:32 Not for your sakes do I [this], saith the Lord GOD, be it known unto you: be ashamed and confounded for your own ways, O house of Israel.
As we can see from these verses Israel will eventually experience a national conversion to the Gospel and will believe in Jesus as the Messiah. The Jews were chosen out of the people of the world to be a special people in which God made them the repository for his Word, yet as we see now in Israel the Jews are largely a secular country with estimates that 90% is secular and only 10% is religious. Despite their failure to recognize the Messiah and be the way God wanted them to be, the Jews have exercised their own free will and rejected the job that God gave them. In turn the Bible says that God decided to take out from the Gentiles as special people for himself. These people the Bible says will bear fruit for the Gospel message and for the task of spreading the Good News. However, despite the rejection of the Messiah, God did not cast away the Jews. No, he merely set them aside while he created what is commonly referred to as the “new race” of man or a new creation as it is sometimes called. When a person is born again, the person becomes a new creation. The Bible warns us again becoming conceited over this fact as a hardening has overcome Israel at this time so that God may take a people from the Gentiles for himself. This group of people is commonly referred to as the church. It is comprised of both Jews and Gentiles.
Some people believe that God has cast away the Jews because they rejected Jesus. They argue that since the Jews rejected Jesus, that the church is now Israel and has replaced the Jews as God’s chosen people. While it is true that the church is a special people to God, the fact is that God knew beforehand that the Jews would reject the Messiah and he planned long ago to redeem them through his perfect plan of redemption. God did not cast them away, he will eventually see to it that the Jews repent of their past sins, convert to faith in Jesus, and be saved as his Word declares. The Bible also declares that when the Lord Jesus returns that Jew and Christian alike will finally be reconciled as part of the same olive tree. This is seen in Romans 11:17-24:
Rom 11:17 And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;
Rom 11:18 Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.
Rom 11:19 Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in.
Rom 11:20 Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:
Rom 11:21 For if God spared not the natural branches, [take heed] lest he also spare not thee.
Rom 11:22 Behold therefore the goodness and severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in [his] goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.
Rom 11:23 And they also, if they abide not still in unbelief, shall be graffed in: for God is able to graff them in again.
Rom 11:24 For if thou wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert graffed contrary to nature into a good olive tree: how much more shall these, which be the natural [branches], be graffed into their own olive tree?
While Christianity grew out of Judaism, which was based upon the faith and particular people based on god’s promises to Abraham. The Jews rose to be a distinct nation and people which eventually ended up being called Israel. This was a fulfillment of a promise in God made to Abraham in Genesis 17:5-8.
Gen 17:5 Neither shall thy name any more be called Abram, but thy name shall be Abraham; for a father of many nations have I made thee.
Gen 17:6 And I will make thee exceeding fruitful, and I will make nations of thee, and kings shall come out of thee.
Gen 17:7 And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee.
Gen 17:8 And I will give unto thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.
Despite the long struggles throughout history to maintain their unique lineage and land, the Jews have face tremendous odds to do so and that is yet another testament to the promises that God makes he will surely keep. With the rise of Christianity it was natural for Jews to feel that their place in God’s plans had be reduced, yet this is not the case. God has a plan for both the church and Israel. As we can see through Bible prophecy that the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus will preached in all the world and then the end of the age will come.
Finally, we can see that through the use of Bible prophecy we can have the Good News of salvation through Jesus Christ because everything God said would happen from the beginning of the Bible to the present has been fulfilled remarkably. Because of the successful track record of Bible prophecy, we can rest assured that the future prophecies will be fulfilled just as the other have been. What an awesome Lord we serve!!