“And what one nation in the earth is like thy people Israel, whom God went to redeem to be his own people, to make thee a name of greatness and terribleness, by driving out nations from before thy people, whom thou hast redeemed out of Egypt? For thy people Israel didst thou make thine own people for ever; and thou, LORD, becamest their God.”
1 Chronicles 17:21-22
Twice in his magnificent prayer of gratitude, David referred to Israel as God’s special, redeemed nation. God has made many covenant promises to national-ethnic Israel, beginning with the promises He made to her progenitors, the patriarch’s Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. God promised through His prophets that Israel would never cease to be a nation before Him (Jeremiah 31). He promised that one day a Davidic King would reign and rule over His special covenant people (Ezekiel 34:23-24; 37:24-25). These promises are unconditional; God fully intends to make good on them. On the other hand, God also promised that if Israel would drift from Him and cast His law behind them, He would punish their rebellion and faithlessness with Gentile aggression and suppression; Israel would be temporarily dispossessed of political and judicial authority and, in some cases, even of her land. Leviticus 26 contains some of the most powerful statements concerning both the Lord’s promises of chastening and of His enduring faithfulness to His people. The testimony of history reveals that these were no empty promises. Repeatedly, God’s covenant nation was stricken for her sins in the ways in which God promised. Repeatedly, God has stepped in and redeemed His people just as He promised also. After the church is taken to the place the Lord has prepared for her (John 14:1-3; 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17), Israel will be reactivated as the center of God’s religious program. Two witnesses (Revelation 11) will inaugurate the Temple program in Jerusalem and through their ministry, 144,000 Jewish witnesses for Christ will act as custodians of His blessed Gospel (Revelation 7). Satan’s masterpiece, the man of sin (2 Thessalonians 2:3) will wage war with believing Israel. Like their Messiah, Israel will be the object of Gentile aggression, not for their crimes, but for their faithfulness to God (Revelation 12). At the end of the age, when Israel appears to be on the brink of destruction, God will redeem His covenant nation in the most spectacular and awesome way imaginable: He Himself will descend from heaven in the Person of His Son Jesus, the Almighty King of kings and Lord of lords, halting the assault on His covenant people and establishing His rule as the promised Davidic King (Matthew 24:29-31; Revelation 19:11-21; Luke 1:31-33). Let us rejoice in God’s faithfulness, and let us pray also for the peace of Jerusalem (Psalm 122:6).
God bless you,