In fact, the prophecy of Genesis 12:2, 3, 7, given by God nearly 4,000 years ago, is one of the most far-reaching in the entire Bible.
It is the account of God setting up a missionary nation to whom He could teach His precepts. That nation could teach the world about God. Note what God promised:
1. Abraham’s posterity would become a nation (12:2). Today Abraham’s descendants are a nation, and references to that nation appear almost daily in world-wide media headlines.
2. The country to which God had brought Abraham would be israel’s homeland (13:14, 15). Though Israel would be dispersed throughout the world because of transgressions of God’s Law, the Bible constantly promises a permanent home in the Holy Land. Permanency began when Israel became a nation in 1948.
3. God would make Abraham’s name great (12:2). Who else, after 4,000 years, is revered as much as that patriarch?
4. Most importantly, all people would be blessed through the Jews (v. 3).
Here is how the Jews have blessed all mankind:
- By letting us know the true God
- By giving us God’s laws
- By developing the Bible — all writers were Jewish except Luke
- By giving us a Savior — a Jew
- By preparing us to help win the world
Concerning the Jews, Charles Stevens wrote: “The enigma of history is the preservation of the sons of Jacob. There they stand, singularly alone, magnificently different, defiantly unchanged.
“Like the Bible itself, the descendants of Abraham are standing like a Gibraltar, beat upon by a ceaseless and angry tide of hatred and opposition, but still remaining the eternal nation.”
A rich biblical promise to the Jews reads like this: “This is what the Lord says, he who appoints the sun to shine by day, who decrees the moon and stars to shine by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar—the Lord Almighty is his name: ‘Only if these decrees vanish from my sight,’ declares the Lord, ‘will the descendants of Israel ever cease to be a nation before me’” (Jeremiah 31:35-36).
The stars, the moon and the sun remain. So does this magnificent proclamation of Jehovah.
The Jews dreamed of returning to the Holy Land for nearly two millennia. Then in 1897, Theoder Herzi, a Jewish leader, convened the first Zionist Congress in Basle, Switzerland, with the goal, “to create for the Jewish people a home in Palestine secured by public law.”
But with the Holy Land firmly in the hands of the Turks, the prospects were dim. However, the congress was a start. Then in 1917, England’s Balfour Declaration said that England looked with favor upon “the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.”
By 1927, 150,000 Jews were in the Holy Land. Fulfillment of God’s promises of the Jews returning to their Promised Land the “second time” (Isaiah 11:11) had truly begun.
God’s great Word had promised this: “I will take the Israelites out of the nations where they have gone. I will gather them from all around and bring them back into their own land. . . . They will live in the land I gave to my servant Jacob, the land where your fathers lived. They and their children and their children’s children will live there forever” (Ezekiel 37:21, 25).
The restoration led by Zerubbabel after the exile in Babylon is not in view here. The restoration after the exile was not forever, but ended with the fall of Jerusalem in AD 70.
Then on May 14, 1948, Israel became a sovereign nation.
Today Jews are returning to Israel in spite of the turmoil. Each year about 2,500 Jews from the United States and Canada moved to the Holy Land.
The Associated Press reported that Tali Berman was born in America but recently she carried her baby and belongings to Kennedy Airport in New York to make the journey to Israel.
“We’re Jewish, and it feels like home,” said Berman, 27, who was “making alijah” (making Israel her new home) with her husband Joshua and their 15-month-old daughter Anava.
Jewish Agency officials said about 30 percent of Tali Berman’s planeload would live in the occupied West Bank and most of the others would head for large cities.
Some say God is through with the Jews. Some believe that when the Jews rejected Christ, the Messiah, God forsook them and turned completely and solely to the Gentiles. Any predictive Scriptural reference, they contend, refers to the church, which they call spiritual Israel. Such teaching is ill-founded and fallacious because it is unscriptural.
The fact is, God is not at all finished with the Jewish people, because they figure prominently in much of the Scriptural references not yet fulfilled.
The apostle Paul referred to the Jews, the Gentiles, and the “church of God (1 Corinthians 10:32), meaning the Jews are, as they have always been, the elect of God; the Gentiles are, of course, the non-Jews; while the church of God is made up of those who are “new creatures in Christ Jesus,” whether Jew or Gentile (see 2 Corinthians 5:17).