The Nation of Israel: God’s Prophetic Sign

Since this past Wednesday when the U.S. President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, a hoopla has erupted in both the traditional and new media. So far, there have been denunciations from various political and religious quarters. The Coptic Pope cancelled the meeting with Pence over this issue whilst Arab nations are mounting a pressure on Trump to back down on his decision.

There have been clashes leading to the deaths of few persons. Many Palestinians have taken to the streets to protest at the US embassy in Lebanon. I saw a picture of protesting Muslims in Morocco and their visage was of pent-up rage. The hornet’s nest has been stirred up. Our Muslim friends are now getting bent out of shape, throwing fits of rage, foaming at the mouth and attacking their keypads like a hungry bird pecking at a juicy worm.

Even the Muslim Students Society of Nigeria (MSSN) who have otherwise been insouciant about the murderous rampage of Fulani herdsmen and reports of Muslim Arabs enslaving Nigerians in Libya, suddenly found the voice to urge world leaders to reject Trump’s declaration over Jerusalem. The chains of mental slavery that bind many African Muslims compel them to automatically support Arab politics – no matter how irrational – even though these Arab Muslims view them with pure disdain.

Pope Francis, a man who tries to project an image of a “revolutionary thinker” has also (like his predecessors) taken sides with the Palestinian Arabs against Trump’s decision. The Vatican Radio says “the Holy See reiterates its conviction that only a negotiated solution between Israelis and Palestinians can lead to a stable and lasting peace and guarantee the peaceful coexistence of two states within internationally recognized borders.”

Some ask, “Why is this such a controversial issue? Does it really matter who occupies Jerusalem? Can’t the Jews just give up the land for the Arabs  for peace to reign?” To answer these questions, we need to take a brief look at the Biblical history of the nation of Israel.

In Isaiah 43:10, God declares the Jews as His witnesses to the world that He is God. The specific Bible prophecies interwoven into their history are irrefutable evidence of God’s existence, purpose for man and the authenticity of the Bible:

1. God promised a land of clearly defined boundaries to Abraham (Gen. 12:1). He renewed that promise to Isaac (Gen. 26:3-5), to his grandson Jacob (Gen. 28:13) and to their descendants forever (26:3-5, 28:13, Lev. 25:46). He fulfilled this promise by bringing these chosen people into this “Promised Land” through a series of miracles (Dt. 7:6). Note: God didn’t give Ishmael or his descendants any promised land.

2. When the Jewish people entered the Promised Land, God warned them that if they practiced the idolatry and depraved sexual sins of the land’s previous inhabitants whom He had destroyed, He would also cast them out as well (Dt. 28:63; 1 Kgs. 9:7). This was what precisely happened.

A scholar noted that: “During the reign of Jehohakim’s, the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar first invaded Judah ([2 Kings] 24:1). The Lord sent other raiders – Babylonian, Aramean, Moabite, and Ammonite – against Judah during his reign … just as the prophets had long ago foretold.” [1]

3. God declared that His people would be scattered “among all nations, from one end of the earth to the other” (Dt. 28:64) and they would become “a byword and an object of ridicule among all peoples” (1 Kgs. 9:7). This happened just as foretold. A reference work explains that: “God gave Zedekiah and the nation [of Israel] many warnings through Jeremiah and the other prophets, but they were all ignored. The judgment that came spelt death or exile for the whole nation. The exile lasted until the Persians took over the Babylonian Empire.” [2]

4. God warned that wherever the Jews wandered, they would be “an object of cursing … of scorn and reproach” (Jer. 29:18) “a thing of horror and an object of scorn and ridicule to all the nations” (Dt. 28:37). This has been true of the Jews down through history. They have been maligned, hated and treated as scum, not only by Muslims or anti-Semitic political figures, but also by those who claim to be Christians.

A historian recorded that: The [Catholic] “Council of Vienne (1311) forbade all intercourse between Christians and Jews. The Council of Zamora (1313) ruled that they must be kept in strict subjection and servitude. The Council of Basel (1431-33) renewed canonical decrees forbidding Christians to associate with Jews … and instructed secular authorities to confine the Jews in separate quarters [ghettos]…” [3]

Muslims have mistreated Jews far worse for a total of 1300 years.  In Morocco, for example, a historian writes that rape, looting, burning of synagogues, destruction of Torah scrolls and murder were “so frequent that it is impossible to list them.” [4]

5. In spite of being scattered throughout the world, God promised to preserve the Jews as an identifiable ethnic, national group (Lev. 20:26; Jer. 30:11; 31:35-37). The Jews had every reason to intermarry, change their names and hide their identity by any possible means in order to escape persecution. There was no reason for them to have preserved their bloodline when they had no land of their own, when their race imposed cruel disadvantages on them and most of them didn’t really believe the Bible. Yet, they didn’t get absorbed into the nations because God’s promises stand sure.

6. God said through His prophets that He would bring the Jews back into their own land in the last days prior to the Messiah’s second coming (Jer. 31:8-12, Ezk. 11:17; 28:25). This prophecy was fulfilled after 19 centuries since Jerusalem was destroyed (in 70 A.D.) when the nation of Israel was reborn in 1948. This restoration of a nation after 25 centuries is a striking event unparalleled in the history of other peoples. It is beyond mere chance or natural means; only God could have done it.

7. God foretold that the Jews would have hostile nations surrounding them (Zech. 12:1-14) and that in the last days before Jesus’ second coming, Jerusalem would become “a cup of trembling” and “an immovable rock for all people” (Zech. 12:2-3). At the time Zechariah uttered this prophecy some 2,500 years ago, Jerusalem lay in ruins and was surrounded by wilderness and so it remained century after century.

This prophecy seemed absurd even after Israel’s rebirth in 1948, since Israel occupies about one-sixth of 1% of the land area the Arabs possess. Nothing could have indicated that the land of Israel would be a centre of worldwide concern, but today we see fulfillment of Bible prophecy as a terrible war over the city of Jerusalem looms on the world stage.

Today, Jerusalem has become a “burdensome stone” around the necks of all nations of the world who fear what would occur there. It’s the most perplexing problem the United Nation faces currently and it is a sign of the last days. These Biblical prophecies offer us sufficient proofs of God’s existence and the sign of the times we are in. God’s “sign” to the whole world is the land and people of Israel.

There are two main reasons why Muslims want the Jews to give up Jerusalem and their entire promised land.

(a) The Quran is an anti-Semitic book. It says that some Jews were turned into apes and swines by Allah (2:65; 7:166). The Saudi Ministry of Education Textbooks for Islamic Studies says Jews “are people of the Sabbath, whose young people God turned into apes, and whose old people God turned to swine to punish them. As cited in Ibn Abbas: The apes are Jews … while the swine are Christian infidels of the communion of Jesus.”

Speaking of the Jews, Sura 2:61 says: “And humiliation and wretchedness were stamped upon them and they were visited with wrath from Allah.” Sura 98:6 says Jews and Christians are “the worst of creatures.”

The hadith says that the path of “those who earn your anger” in Sura fatiha Muslims recite daily, refers to Jews while “the path of those who go astray” refers to Christians (Bukhari 1:12:749). Sura 5:64 says: “The Jews say: Allah’s hand is tied up. ‘Be their hands be tied up and be accursed for the (blasphemy) they utter … Amongst them we have placed enmity and hatred till the Day of Judgment.”

Muhammad said: “The last hour will not come unless the Muslims will fight against the Jews and the Muslims would kill them until the Jews would hide themselves behind a stone or tree and a stone or tree would say: Muslim…there is a Jew behind me; come and kill him…” (Muslim 41:6985)

That’s why a Muslim scholar, Yusuf Qaradawi said: “Throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the [Jews] people who would punish them for their corruption. The last punishment was carried out by Hitler … This was divine punishment for them. Allah willing, the next time will be in the hands of the believers [i.e Muslims].” [5]

(b) Muslim leaders intend to maintain their hold on Jerusalem so as to sustain the mythical link Muhammad made up to tie his cult to Abraham. Muslims are told that Ishmael was the promised son who inherited Abraham’s covenant promise. But the Quran disproves this long-held theory.

Sura 11: 69-72 say Isaac was the promised son: “And his wife standing by, laughing when We gave her good tidings (of the birth) of Isaac, and after Isaac, of Jacob. She said: Oh woe is me! Shall I bear a child when I am an old woman, and this my husband is an old man?”

The Quran re-tells this story in Sura 37:101-108 where Abraham asked for a righteous son and: “Then when (the son) reached (the age of) (serious) work with him, he said ‘O my son! I see in vision that I offer thee in sacrifice. Now see what is thy view. (The son) said ‘O my father! Do as thou art commanded. Thou will find me if Allah so wills…”

The Quran clearly says it was the same “righteous son” that Abraham asked for that God promised He would give, and God later demanded that the same son be sacrificed to Him. Nowhere in the Quran is the “promised land” given to anyone else other than the Jews, so the land of Jerusalem rightfully belongs to the Jews and they alone.


[1] John Sailhamer, NIV Compact Bible Commentary, Zondervan, 271-272.

[2] The Lion Handbook to the Bible, 1983, eds. David and Pat Alexander, London, 303.

[3] Will Durant, The Story of Civilization, Simon and Schuster, 1950, IV, 729.

[4] Andre Chouraqi, Between East and West: A History of North Africa, PA, 1968, 51.

[5] MEMRI, Feb. 3, 2009


Rider of the White Horse

Over the years, I have observed that most “Christian” cults or heretical sects usually start out with bad eschatology. And I’m not talking about minor misunderstandings or speculations, but flagrant errors that indicate deeper doctrinal problems. This is probably because once a religious group embraces a defective Christology, its soteriology also becomes defective. The next logical step is an eschatology full of gaping holes.

I will illustrate such eschatological blunders from a recent edition of The Watchtower (No 3, 2017) which discusses the 4 horsemen of the book of Revelation. Quotes from the magazine will be in bold.

The vision begins this way: “I saw, and look! a white horse, and the one seated on it had a bow; and a crown was given him, and he went out conquering and to complete his conquest.” – Revelation 6:2

Who is the rider of the white horse? The key to his identity is found in the same Bible book, Revelation, which later identifies this heavenly rider as “The Word of God.” (Revelation 19:11-13) That title, The Word, belongs to Jesus Christ … The white horse is an appropriate symbol for warfare justly carried out by God’s Son, for the Scriptures often use the color white to symbolize righteousness.” (p. 4)

But when one studies the Bible itself – not a flawed interpretation of it – it’s clear that the rider of the white horse in Revelation 6 is not the same as the rider of the white horse in Revelation 19:

1. The rider in Rev. 6 is symbolic but the rider of Rev. 19 is literal. The former represents the Antichrist while the latter represents Jesus Christ in person.

2. The rider in Rev. 6 has a bow without arrows, yet The Watchtower curiously illustrates him holding both a bow and arrow! (p 6). The rider in Rev. 19, however, has a sword in His mouth. Jesus is often symbolized as having a sword, not a bow (Rev. 1:11, 19:21). A bow symbolizes evil designs and conquests (Ps. 7:12; 11:2; 46:9).

3. Just as the rider in Rev. 6, the Bible is clear that Satan is the one who gives Antichrist a crown (Dan. 8:24; 11:38-39; Rev. 13:2,4) but Jesus has always been King.

4. Antichrist is the only person predicted in Scripture as going forth conquering and to conquer. He will attain power by waging war and overthrowing kingdoms (Dan. 7:7-8, 20-21, 23-24; 8:23-25). The Bible also shows that the Antichrist and the kings of the earth will wage war against Jesus, at His second return (Rev. 19:19).

5. The rider in Rev. 6 will begin a series of terrible events on earth: wars, famines, pestilence, death, and hell which are symbolized by the 3 other horsemen (vs. 3). But Jesus will put an end to these events (Rev. 19:11-21).

6. The Antichrist will come on a white horse, imitating Christ and claiming to be Him (Mt. 24:4-5; Jn. 5:43, Dan. 9:27). He will display counterfeit righteousness and offer false peace. But Jesus will return in majestic power and glory as “The Word of God,” “King of kings and Lord of lords” and as the “Faithful and True” (Rev. 19:16).

The Watchtower’s confusion of Christ with the Antichrist proves that they are uninspired and their Bible interpretation is deeply flawed.

But why have we seen conditions that are worse, not better, since Jesus received his crown in 1914? Because at that time, Jesus began ruling in heaven, not on earth” (p. 4)

So how does this works out? If the rider of the white horse in Rev. 6 is Jesus and he is ruling in heaven, why are the other 3 horsemen (warfare, famine, death and hell) operating on earth? It makes no sense. Jesus is already king in heaven. The idea that He only began ruling in heaven in 1914 has no biblical or factual support. The Old Testament prophesies, however, point to Jesus’ future rule here on earth. He came from the tribe of Judah and will thus reign as king (Gen. 49:10); have an eternal throne (2 Sam. 7:16), and is to have his Kingship in the city of Jerusalem (Ps. 2:6). Psalm 110 indicates that the Messiah would subjugate His enemies and rule over them (Is. 9:6-7, Dan. 7:13-14, Zech. 9:9, Mt. 22:41-46). Thus, Jesus’ rule will be on earth at His second advent.

The present times of trouble will soon end. Remember this: Jesus “went out conquering” in 1914, confining Satan to the earth, but Jesus did not then complete his conquest (Revelation 6:2; 12:9, 12) (p. 8).

Of course, the rider in Rev. 6 is not Jesus Christ. And if Jesus began conquering the Devil in 1914, why hasn’t He completed His conquest after more than 100 years? What a terrible web we weave when we tell lies. The Watchtower is forced to prop up a lie with another lie.

Jesus will not only terminate the ride of the other three horsemen but even reverse the effect of their destructive ride (p 8).

Then this refutes their earlier claim that the rider in Rev. 6 is Jesus, since nowhere is that rider said to oppose the other 3 horsemen. They are all in the same “league” and riding together. This ride will take place during the Great Tribulation (See Rev. 6:9-11). The Bible becomes so clear when studied without the badly smoked lens of Watchtower leaders.