Summary: Last in a series on the Mideast. Discusses why we should care about what is occurring in the Middle East.
Today we are finishing our study of the Middle East with part four of this series. In this study we’ve taken a look at America’s involvement in the war in Iraq, trying to determine how we as Christians should respond to war in general and specifically to the war in Iraq.
Then, for the last two weeks we’ve been studying what the Bible has had to say about the Mideast Conflict between Israel and her Arab neighbors. First, we saw that the Jewish people were the rightful owners to the disputed Holy Land. God gave them the title to the land over 4000 years ago through an unconditional covenant He made with their forefather Abraham and later confirmed with his son Isaac and grandson Jacob. It was an everlasting covenant, meaning that it will stand forever. God will never rescind His promise to the Jews.
Then last week we turned our attention to the Arab people and saw that God had also made promises to them through their ancestor Ishmael, Abraham’s first-born son. The promises were also unconditional and have been fulfilled to the letter. And even with those promises the Arabs still want to control the land of the Jews.
I said we need to realize that the present-day land dispute is an ongoing feud between brothers that has lasted for thousands of years and actually has more to do with the hatred of the Arabs for the Jews than it does with the land. We also looked at the Palestinian refugee problem, how it came about, who the Palestinians really are, and the fact that they already have a state or country of their own.
Copies of these teachings are available on the vestibule table should you wish to review and study them more closely on your own.
Today, we will be returning our attention to the Jewish people and their reestablished nation. The modern day return of the Jews to their homeland is one of the greatest miracles of history. It is also a fulfillment of Bible prophecy. By reading the Bible we can easily see how the regathering of the Jews is all a part of God’s plan for them. But now that they are in their homeland, what happens next?
By looking at all of the problems that are occurring because of the Jewish presence in the Holy Land it makes me wonder. Why did God regather them in the first place? If the land clearly belongs to them, what about all the fighting and terrorism and suffering they are facing on a daily basis? Why doesn’t God do something about that? And what does this all mean to the Church? -- These are the question we are going to tackle today in the final study on the Mideast entitled, “The Jews Are Home, Now What?”
I. Why Did God Regather the Jews In the First Place?
The first question we’re going to try to answer is why did God regather the Jews in the first place? It’s not a question that many people ask. Most just look at the fact that there is a Jewish homeland in Israel and go from there. But as we’ve said before, the Bible is God’s revelation to us of our past, present, and future. So, if the Jews, God’s chosen people, exist as a nation once again, their must be some reason for it, and more than likely we can find that reason in the Bible. There are actually several reasons for the regathering, but today we are going to look at just two of them.
A. The Promises
One of the simplest and easiest to understand reasons for God regathering His people to their land is the fact that He promised to do so. In fact, the promise of restoration of the Jews to their homeland is the most prolific prophecy in the Old Testament. It is mentioned there more times than any other prophecy.
Deuteronomy 30: 1-5, “When all these blessings and curses I have set before you come upon you and you take them to heart wherever the Lord your God disperses you among the nations,  and when you and your children return to the Lord your God and obey him with all your heart and with all your soul according to everything I command you today,  then the Lord your God will restore your fortunes and have compassion on you and gather you again from all the nations where he scattered you.  Even if you have been banished to the most distant land under the heavens, from there the Lord your God will gather you and bring you back.  He will bring you to the land that belonged to your fathers, and you will take possession of it. He will make you more prosperous and numerous than your fathers.”