Expositional commentary on Scripture using an inductive exegetical methodology intent upon confronting the lives of Christians with the dogmatic Truths of God's inspired Words opposing Calvinism and Arminianism, Biblical commentary, doctrine of grace enablement, understanding holiness and wisdom and selfishness, in-depth Bible studies, adult Bible Study books and Sunday School materials Dr. Lance T. Ketchum Line Upon Line: February 2018

Monday, February 26, 2018

I. The Church and Biblical Zionism

Chapter Seven
I. The Church and Biblical Zionism

What is God’s purpose in giving us prophetic utterances about the future?  God’s purpose in giving prophetic utterances about the future is to inform faithful believers and encourage them by reminding them He is going to do what He says He will do.  Secondly, God’s purpose in giving prophetic utterances about the future is to warn the unfaithful believers and call them to repentance.  If knowing prophetic truth does not get you serious about what is coming, and if it does not change the way you live because of that knowledge, you are merely seeing prophecy as fiction or fantasy.  The Bible word for living unchanged in the light of God’s revealed knowledge about the future is simply – UNBELIEF!

Zechariah 2:8 says, “for he that toucheth you {the nation of Israel} toucheth the apple of his {God’s} eye.”  The intent here seems to mean that any person that sets out to injure or harm the nation of Israel must see himself as trying to harm God Himself.  A person succeeding in touching Israel to harm her will ultimate be held accountable by God Himself in that such ill determinations are viewed by God as attempting to thwart God’s plans for Israel. 

Some commentaries say that the pronoun “his” in the phrase “toucheth the apple of his eye” is referring to someone that touches Israel to harm her is actually harming himself.  However, the phrase must be understood from the context of a previous statement from Deuteronomy 32:9-10 where the pronoun is clearly God.  Scripture interprets Scripture!

9 For the LORD’S portion is his people; Jacob is the lot of his inheritance. 10 He {God} found him {Jacob or Israel} in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he {God} led him {Jacob or Israel} about, he {God} instructed him {Jacob or Israel}, he {God} kept him {Jacob or Israel} as the apple of his {God’s} eye” (Deuteronomy 32:9-10).

Zechariah chapter two is encouraging words to a disparaged and captive people.  The last four verses of Zechariah chapter two confirm that encouragement of the faithful is God’s intent.  In the last four verses of Zechariah chapter two, we see the promise of people of “many nations” “joined to the LORD” in the Kingdom Age.  These are saved Gentiles from many ethnicities and nations of the world.

The “times of the Gentiles began in B.C. 606 with Nebuchadnezzar’s capture of the city of Jerusalem.  Throughout the “times of the Gentiles,” Jerusalem “shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled” (Luke 21:24).  The words “trodden down” literally means under foot.  The intent is that they will not regain their sovereignty as a nation completely independent of Gentile authority/occupation until the second coming of Jesus.  Thousands of years have passed since the beginning of the “times of the Gentiles,” but God tells the faithful, believing remnant of Jews that He “will dwell in the midst of thee” (Zechariah 2:10). 

Biblical Zionism in modern theological terminology is most often just known as MillennialismAlthough Biblical Zionism is predominantly Jewish in nature, it does involve the Church at the second coming of the Lord Jesus.  Although the Church is never national Israel, the Church will be grafted into national Israel as a new Melchisedecan Priesthood and the “bride of Christ” under her High Priest Christ Jesus at the beginning of the Kingdom Age. 

The Church Age accounts for most of the time of the gap between the sixty-ninth and seventieth weeks of Daniel 9:24. These “seventy weeks” are the “times of the Gentiles” and God’s judgment on the nation of Israel for their breach of their promise to keep the Mosaic Covenant. 

Zechariah 2:10-13 is the consummate statement regarding the one-thousand-year reign of Jesus Christ and Biblical Zionism.  Zechariah 2:10-13 also confirms God’s promise to Abraham; “17 And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; 18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation {Israel}, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him (because through Abraham’s  generations, ‘thy Seed, which is Christ’ will come; Gal. 3:16}” (Genesis 18:17-18)?  It is through faith in the promised Seed that “all the nations of the earth shall be blessed.”  Zechariah 2:10-13 also confirms a literal Hermeneutic as the only acceptable interpretation, thereby excluding all other theories regarding the Millennial Kingdom on Earth. 

10 Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion: for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the LORD. 11 And many nations shall be joined to the LORD in that day, and shall be my people: and I will dwell in the midst of thee, and thou shalt know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me unto thee. 12 And the LORD shall inherit Judah his portion in the holy land, and shall choose Jerusalem again. 13 Be silent, O all flesh, before the LORD: for he is raised up out of his holy habitation” (Zechariah 2:10-13).

          Since God has said this same thing in so many other portions of Scripture, why does He feel the need to say it again to the faithful remnant of Israel?  God repeats these promises to reaffirm them and reassure the faithful.  These things can be said a thousand times to the unbelieving and they will mean nothing.  However, the believers are encouraged to continue in their faithfulness.  Through the repetition of God’s promises, believers are confirmed in their resolve to persevere to the end.  The “lo, I come” statement of the preincarnate LORD in Zechariah 2:10 is the same confirmation given by Peter to Church Age believers in II Peter 3:10.  It is also clear from II Peter 3:9 that Christ’s delay in His second coming is due to His passion for lost souls to come to repentance and faith. 

9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. 11 Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness, 12 Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat? 13 Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. 14 Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of him in peace, without spot, and blameless” (II Peter 3:9-14).

          In 2016, Israel and the United States accounted for 83% of the Jewish population of the world.  The total number of Jews in the world in 2016 was 14.4 million.  About 1.5 million of those Jews profess to be Christians of some sort or another.  Only a small percentage of the Jews professing Christianity would be truly “born again” Christians.  Yet, by the end of the Tribulation, God will have a nation of saved Jews that will trust in Jesus and confess Him as LORD.  Only saved Jews and saved people from Gentile nations, surviving the Tribulation judgments and the persecutions of Antichristism, will enter the Kingdom Age in physical bodies.  All other occupants of the Kingdom Age at its beginning will be in glorified bodies.  These glorified believers will return to Earth with Jesus at the battle of Armageddon. 

25 As he saith also in Osee, I will call them my people, which were not my people; and her beloved, which was not beloved. 26 And it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people; there shall they be called the children of the living God. 27 Esaias also crieth concerning Israel {Isaiah 10:22}, Though the number of the children of Israel {all Jews from all times} be as the sand of the sea, a remnant {very few; faithful believers} shall be saved: 28 For he will finish the work, and cut it short in righteousness: because a short work will the Lord make upon the earth {the seven-year Tribulation}. 29 And as Esaias said before {Isaiah 1:9}, Except the Lord of Sabaoth {a Hebrew military term for the hosts of war; armies; Zechariah 2:8} had left us a seed {believing remnant}, we had been as Sodoma, and been made like unto Gomorrha. 30 What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith. 31 But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. 32 Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone; 33 As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed” (Romans 9:25-33).

Romans chapters nine, ten, and eleven critically explain what Zechariah chapter two means regarding Zionism.  When it comes to understanding the future of Israel and the role that the Church will have in Zionism, our understanding would be greatly hindered without the explanations of these three chapters of Scripture.  It would be irresponsible to look at the future of Israel without carefully evaluating what God says to Christian Jews and all Gentile believers in these three chapters of Scripture.  Romans chapter nine explains God’s election/choosing of the nation of Israel through which Messiah would be born.  Chapter nine also explains which Jews part of true Israel are.  Chapter ten explains to Jews how to become part of true Israel. 

6 Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: 7 Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called. 8 That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise {faith in the Promised Propitiator of the Abrahamic Covenant} are counted for the seed” (Romans 9:6-8).

Five categories of people that will inhabit the earth during the Millennial Kingdom

1. The Bride of Christ, His Church, who will return with Jesus in their glorified state at His second advent to rule with Him on the earth for one thousand years.  These people will occupy the Kingdom in glorified bodies and rule with Christ.  
2. All the saved of all Ages resurrected from the dead and given glorified bodies (most likely resurrected at the time of the Church Age saints). 
3. All those who were martyred for Christ during the Tribulation time (Revelation 2:26-27 and 20:4-6). These people will occupy the Kingdom in glorified bodies.  
4. All those who have put their faith in Christ for salvation from all the nations of the world during the Tribulation and who have not been killed by Antichrist, or who have not died during the Tribulation (Revelation 7:9-17).  These people will occupy the Kingdom in physical bodies.
5. The 144,000 Jews, 12,000 from each tribe, sealed in heaven in their foreheads with the Name of God, will constitute the protected remnant of Israel; and all the people who will be won to Christ by the two witnesses and this remnant (Revelation 7:2-8, compare Revelation 9:4).  The first group of 144,000 sealed Jews will occupy the Kingdom in glorified bodies, while those Jews won to faith in Christ by them and survive the Tribulation will enter the Kingdom in physical bodies. 

          Romans chapter eleven tells us God will graft a wild branch (Gentile believers of the Church Age) into the Root of the Olive Tree Israel.  The Root of course is Jesus Christ, the Rod out of the stem of JesseThis is the Abrahamic Covenant.  Most professing Christians do not possess even the most basic understanding of the connection between the Abrahamic Covenant and the Mosaic Covenant. 

The Abrahamic Covenant is PRIMARY.  The Mosaic Covenant is secondary.  The Abrahamic Covenant defines salvation by grace through faith.  The Mosaic Covenant defines sanctification for a redeemed nation by God’s enabling grace through works. 

Romans 9:25-33 must be the most ignored verses of Scripture in the Word of God.  Why do I say that?  I say that because these verses seem to be ignored by Covenant Theologians, Reformed Theologians, and even some Dispensational Theologians.  These verses correct the false notions of a Universal Church Theonomically replacing the nation of Israel.  These verses correct the false notion that all national Israel is lost and cast away to reprobation by God.  These verses correct the false notion that Church Age believers are not a partial fulfillment of the New Covenant within the Abrahamic Covenant.  Paul quotes from seven Old Testament texts to show that Church Age saints, made up of “born again” Jews and Gentiles, partially fulfill the prophecy of seven texts and that this new elect group (chronologically) joins with the Faith Seed of Abraham (“born again” believers within national Israel; i.e., the genetic Seed of Abraham) promised within the Abrahamic Covenant.  These seven texts are:

1. Hosea 2:1-23 (Romans 9:25)
2. Hosea 1:9-10 (Romans 9:26)
3. Isaiah 10:20-23 (Romans 9:27-28)
4. Isaiah 1:2-9 (Romans 9:29)
5. Psalm 118:19-29 (Romans 9:33)
6. Isaiah 8:9-15 (Romans 9:33)
7. Isaiah 28:14-22 (Romans 9:33)

Hosea 2:1-23 gives us an expanded context of Paul’s previous statement in Romans 9:14-15 regarding what God said to Moses at Mt. Sinai; “14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid. 15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.”  We must bring the context of the prophecy of Hosea chapter two, from which Paul quotes, into the context of what Paul is saying in Romans chapter nine regarding national Israel (the natural or genetic seed of Abraham) and spiritual Israel (the Faith Seed of Abraham, which is the remnant Seed of Israel). 

(Continued next Week)

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Numerous studies and series are available free of charge for local churches at: http://www.disciplemakerministries.org/ 
Dr. Lance Ketchum serves the Lord as a Church Planter, Evangelist/Revivalist. 
He has served the Lord for over 40 years.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Biblical Zionism Counterfeited

Chapter Six
Biblical Zionism Counterfeited

          Zechariah 2:6-9 begins with the “alas, alas, come forth” call of the Messiah to the Jews to regather themselves in Israel.  This call happens at the beginning of the Kingdom Age.  It is important to understand that this is a Kingdom Age call because the Antichrist will counterfeit this at the beginning of the seven-year Tribulation.  The theological position known as Amillennialism pre-programs professing (but still lost) Christianity for the coming of the great Deceiver.  Whatever God plans, Satan counterfeits

6 Ho, ho, come forth, and flee from the land of the north, saith the LORD: for I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heaven, saith the LORD. 7 Deliver thyself, O Zion, that dwellest with the daughter of Babylon. 8 For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye. 9 For, behold, I will shake mine hand upon them, and they shall be a spoil to their servants: and ye shall know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me” (Zechariah 2:6-9).

          The Antichrist will rise to power at the beginning of the seven-year Tribulation.  The Antichrist will present himself as the Messiah of Israel through a false peace pact with Israel.  He will impersonate the true Messiah by regathering the Jews to the land of Israel near the beginning of the seven-year Tribulation.  We must remember that the Antichrist is Satan’s counterfeit Messiah presented to the Jews as their theology falsely views Him and why they rejected Jesus at the first advent.  The corrupted Jewish priesthood, and most of the Jews that the priesthood had corrupted, wanted only a conquering King, not a suffering Saviour.  The corrupted, apostate Church wants only the suffering Saviour and does not want the conquering King.  The Jesus of Zechariah is not the Jesus of apostate Christianity and Replacement Theology.  We see this counterfeit Messiah in Daniel 9:27 and Revelation 6:1-2.  All the prophetic books are Messianic in scope.  However, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, Zechariah, and Revelations are primarily Messianic. 

“And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week and in the midst of the week {three and a half years} he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate” (Daniel 9:27).

1 And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. 2 And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer” (Revelation 6:1-2).

          Many people will be confused and deceived because of the false end-time view known as AmillennialismAmillennialists believe that there will be no literal reign of Christ on Earth.  They believe the Church will usher in a utopian kingdom on earth through what is known as Kingdom Constructionism.  In other words, Ecumenical Christianity will be so effective in its dialogue that peace on earth will be accomplished and poverty will end through the redistribution of wealth. 

Three Theological Positions on the Millennium

          The word Millennium means a thousand-year period.  Another word for it is Chiliasm coming from the Greek word CHILIAS meaning one-thousand.  Chiliasm refers specifically to the teaching that Jesus Christ will reign on earth for one thousand years after His second coming.  This is essentially the meaning of the first theological position on the Millennium called Premillennialism.  This is Biblical Millennialism.
          Premillennialism is the outcome of literal interpretation of prophecy resulting in what is known as Dispensationalism.  Dispensationalism sees the Church Age (the sixth Dispensation) coming to a catastrophic end due to the judgment of God upon the earth.  Premillennialists see the redeemed (the saved of the Church Age) removed (raptured) from the earth prior to the judgments (tribulation) beginning.  Almost all historians of early church history agree that Premillennialism was the view held by those of the Apostolic Age.

          Premillennialism also distinguishes between God’s dealings with the Church and Israel in end time prophecies.  It holds to the regathering and restoration of the literal nation of Israel at the beginning of the theocratic Millennial Kingdom under Jesus Christ.

          A second theological position is known as Amillennialism. Central to this position is the denial of the literal reign of Jesus Christ upon the earth. There are two central divisions in this position.  There are those who believe the prophecies relating to the millennium are being fulfilled presently on earth as Christianity subdues the world and ushers in a utopian society (this is the Augustinian position of Amillennialism).

          Then, there are those who believe the saints in heaven are fulfilling the prophecies about the millennium during this period (proposal by Kliefoth).  This requires the spiritualization (allegory) of these prophecies in that they cannot apply to people living on earth.  These two Amillennial positions require an allegorical interpretation of Scripture.  In both cases, they believe the eternal state will happen immediately after the second coming of Christ.  Many do not believe in a literal second coming or an eternal state.  Theological liberals commonly hold this position.

          The third major theological position is known as Postmillennialism.  This position was first proposed by the English Unitarian, Daniel Whitby (1638-1726).  Much of this position is the direct result of the interpretation of the purpose and work of Christ from the Unitarian perspective of salvation and the Church.

          Postmillennialists believe the Church Age will end with the whole earth turning to Christianity (at least their concept of Christianity).  They believe that once this is accomplished, then Christ will return.  Post means after, therefore Postmillennialism means Christ will return after the Millennium, not before it.  This not only requires the allegorical interpretation of prophecy, it requires the rejection of many portions of Scripture regarding the Millennial Kingdom (such as Revelation 20:1-7).

In the middle of all this theological deception and confusion we find the Deceiver lying in wait to deceive.  Fitting right in with Amillennial views, it seems apparent that the Antichrist will make a “covenant” of peace “with many” nations at the beginning of the seven-year Tribulation.  If we understand the “bow” of Revelation 6:2 to represent the power to project missiles over a long distance, we can understand what he may use to procure this peace treaty (“covenant”).  It is also apparent from Matthew 24:5 that he will not come in his own name but pretending to possess power and authority from God.  He will come disguised as God’s Christ and offering a pseudo-peace.  This fact is primary to revealing the Antichrist.

1 But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. 2 For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. 3 For when they {according to Daniel 9:24, this is particularly the Jews, although it includes all unbelievers of the prophetic Word of God} shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. 4 But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief {the Church is excluded from the Tribulation}” (I Thessalonians 5:1-4).

“For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many” (Matthew 24:5).

“I am come in my Father’s name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive” (John 5:43).

          The opposite is the false peace offered by the rider on the white horse.  Matthew 24:6-7 is speaking about the seventieth week of Daniel just prior to the coming of Messiah to establish the Kingdom Age. 

6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. 7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places” (Matthew 24:5-6).

          As soon as the Antichrist has deceived the world into thinking he is the great peacemaker that the Amillennialists are looking for, he will turn to his real agenda; DESTRUCTION (compare I Thessalonians 5:1-4).  Just as soon as the utopian liberals begin to believe that Ecumenicism will usher in the utopian kingdom of socialism and world peace, “the sudden destruction cometh on them . . . and they shall not escape.”

          Each of these four horsemen of Revelation 6:1-8 offers an illusion of Christ.  They will offer one thing but give another.  Part of the effectiveness of the delusions is that the “delusion” of these four horsemen is probably the fulfillment of II Thessalonians 2:1-12.

1 Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our gathering together unto him, 2 That ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at hand. 3 Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; 4 Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God. 5 Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things? 6 And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time. 7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way. 8 And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, 10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. 11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (II Thessalonians 2:1-12).

          The “lie” is that this Antichrist is Christ.  Daniel 11:21-23 adds more to this whole pattern:

21 And in his estate shall stand up a vile person, to whom they shall not give the honour of the kingdom: but he shall come in peaceably, and obtain the kingdom by flatteries. 22 And with the arms of a flood shall they be overflown from before him, and shall be broken; yea, also the prince of the covenant. 23 And after the league made with him he shall work deceitfully: for he shall come up, and shall become strong with a small people” (Daniel 11:21-23).

          The above verses certainly describe the actions of present day world politics, “vile” people, given “honour” or leadership by the populace, by using “flatteries” and “deceitfulness.”  Modern politics is built upon this foundation of deceit.  They use polls to find out what the majority wants and then tell them what they want to hear just to get their following (at least until they are elected).  It is little wonder that the Antichrist will be able to step into that system and be accepted with open arms.  Currently, the best politician is always the best deceiver.  He will come proposing to establish the Kingdom of God on earth knowing full well it is really the Tribulation time. The “rider on the white horse” represents this aspect of the character of the Antichrist.

          Under the counterfeit promise of peace, the Antichrist will bring war (“white horse”).  Under a flag of truce, the Antichrist will conquer the trusting and unsuspecting (“red horse”).  Under the promise of prosperity and re-distribution of wealth, the Antichrist will bring famine (“black horse”).  And under the promise of the great life under the Great Society, will instead come the final awakening to his reality, DEATH (eternal death).

          Daniel 9:24 gives us six reasons for the “times of the Gentiles” and the “seventy-weeks” of years that define the literal chastisement of God on a literal nation of Israel.  

24 Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people {the Jews, not the Church} and upon thy holy city {Jerusalem, not the Church}”

(1) “to finish {restrict or restrain} the transgression” {Israel’s spiritual revolt against God, the goal of this 70 years of chastisement is to bring the nation of Israel to repentance and acceptance of the Messiah and His finished work of redemption}
(2) “to make an end of sins” {to seal up the sins of Israel like a criminal in a prison cell.  This keeps God’s Name from being blasphemed in that without the chastisement God would be viewed as being acceptable with Israel’s great compromises}
(3) “to make reconciliation for iniquity;” - “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all” Isaiah 53:6).  Although Jesus has propitiated the wrath of God for the sins of the whole world (I John 2:2), this statement is specific to the national sins of the nation of Israel in her failure to keep (righteously enforce) the statutes and judgments of the Mosaic Covenant. 
(4) “to bring in everlasting righteousness;” this is the Kingdom Age rule of the “rod of iron” of Jesus and His new priesthood of all faithful Church Age believers.  The first generation of the Kingdom Age will begin with only “born again” people.  The restored nation of Israel will be comprised of only saved Jews regathered to the Promised Land.  Righteousness and justice will be enforced like an unbending “rod of iron.” 

33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel {Kingdom Age}; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law {Mosaic Covenant} in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more” (Jeremiah 31:33-34).

(5) “to seal up the vision and prophecy;” to make an end to the prophecy of the “times of the Gentiles” in the chastisement of the nation of Israel due to her refusal to hear the prophets of God and repent and keep the Mosaic Covenant. 

25 For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part {this was due the hardness of their own unrepentant hearts, some Jews got saved and accepted Jesus as LORD and Saviour} is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. 26 And so all Israel shall be saved {the nation of saved Jews that begins the Kingdom Age}: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer {the physical presence of King Jesus in sovereign power}, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob: 27 For this is my covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins {nation sins}” (Romans 11:25-27)

(6) “to anoint the most Holy;” Jesus anoints of the “most Holy Place” by His presence there.  Jesus’s presence will “anoint” “the most Holy” as the Shekinah of God in the Temple of the Millennial Kingdom.  The “most Holy” place is the “most Holy” because of the abiding presence of Jesus.  God gives two prophetic chapters of Scripture in Ezekiel chapter forty-one and forty-two to tells us that the Kingdom Age Temple will be a literal Temple constructed with exacting detail and specific measurements.  These exacting details and specific measurements are intended to eliminate any possibility for someone to allegorize the text into something mystical. 
25 Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and {plus}threescore and two weeks {7 + 62 = 69 or 483 years}: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times {Jacob’s troubles or the seventieth week of years = the Tribulation}. 26 And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off {the first advent and the crucifixion}, but not for himself {vicarious sacrifice}: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. 27 And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate” (Daniel 9:25-27).

1. The prophecy has to do with Daniel’s people - Israel and the city of Jerusalem (Daniel 9:24).  The true Church is not included because she is already in Heaven. 
2. The time specified in the prophecy is seventy weeks (of years) as specified in verse twenty-four.  This period is then divided into three lesser periods:

A. A period of seven (7) weeks (of years) or 49 years (vs. 25)
B. A period of sixty-two (62) weeks (of years) or 434 years (vs. 25)
C. A period of one (1) week (of years) or 7 years (vs. 27)

3. The beginning of this time-period of seventy weeks of years is fixed at “the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem” (verse 25).
4. The end of the seven weeks of years and the sixty-two weeks of years - 49 plus 434 years (483 years) will be some event in the life of Messiah, the Prince of Israel (verse 25).  This is what we know as Palm Sunday.
5. After sixty-nine weeks of years (483 years) Messiah will be cut off and Jerusalem will be destroyed by the people of another prince who is yet to come (verse 26).  This is the crucifixion and the Roman destruction of the Temple in the Jerusalem in A.D. 70.
6. After these important events, we come to the last or seventieth week of (7) years, the beginning of which will be marked by the covenant or treaty, which the coming prince (Antichrist) will make with national Israel, the promised duration of this treaty is originally for seven years (see verse 27).
7. In the midst of the seven years (the Tribulation) the treaty will be broken, and the coming prince will cause the Jewish sacrifices to cease and his wrath to fall on national Israel.  This condition will prevail for the remainder of the week, or the last 31/2 years of the Tribulation - see verse 27.
8. With the completion of the seventy weeks of years (490 years) a time of great blessing will be ushered in for Israel (verse 24 – the Kingdom Age).
Zechariah 2:8 says, “for he that toucheth you {the nation of Israel} toucheth the apple of his {God’s} eye.”  The intent here seems to mean that any person that sets out to injure or harm the nation of Israel must see himself as trying to harm God Himself.  Such as person that succeeds in touching Israel to harm her will ultimate be held accountable by God Himself in that such ill determinations are viewed by God as attempting to thwart God’s plans for Israel. 

Some commentaries say that the pronoun “his” in the phrase “toucheth the apple of his eye” is referring to someone that touches Israel to harm her is actually harming himself.  However, the phrase must be understood from the context of a previous statement from Deuteronomy 32:9-10 where the pronoun is clearly God.

9 For the LORD’S portion is his people; Jacob is the lot of his inheritance. 10 He {God} found him {Jacob or Israel} in a desert land, and in the waste howling wilderness; he {God} led him {Jacob or Israel} about, he {God} instructed him {Jacob or Israel}, he {God} kept him {Jacob or Israel} as the apple of his {God’s} eye” (Deuteronomy 32:9-10).

Anonymous comments will not be allowed. 
Numerous studies and series are available free of charge for local churches at: http://www.disciplemakerministries.org/ 
Dr. Lance Ketchum serves the Lord as a Church Planter, Evangelist/Revivalist. 
He has served the Lord for over 40 years.

Monday, February 5, 2018

I. Biblical Zionism

Chapter Five
I. Biblical Zionism

We need no other evidence other than Zechariah chapter two to refute the false, heretical doctrines of Replacement Theology.  Reformed Theology and Covenant Theology are simply other names for Replacement Theology.  The primary false doctrine of Replacement Theology is that God has cast away the nation of Israel after which all God’s promises to national Israel are now transferred to a Theonomic institution call the Church.  There are numerous variations of views regarding Replacement Theology among different Christian denominations.  However, Replacement Theology is a serious doctrinal error because it makes God a liar regarding His promises to Abraham regarding the nation of Israel. 

1 I lifted up mine eyes again, and looked, and behold a man with a measuring line in his hand. 2 Then said I, Whither goest thou? And he said unto me, To measure Jerusalem, to see what is the breadth thereof, and what is the length thereof. 3 And, behold, the angel {the preincarnate Son of God} that talked with me went forth, and another angel went out to meet him, 4 And said unto him, Run, speak to this young man, saying, Jerusalem shall be inhabited as towns without walls for the multitude of men and cattle therein: 5 For I, saith the LORD, will be unto her a wall of fire round about, and will be the glory in the midst of her” (Zechariah 2:1-5).

Zechariah 2:1-5 gives us two critical criteria that define Biblical Zionism.  We cannot have a true Biblical vision of Zionism if either of these two criteria are absent.  In many cases, the Jewish movement known as Zionism is the hope of a restored nation of Israel with Jerusalem as its capital but absent of the hope of looking for the Messiah.  Biblically, if the Messiah is absent Zionism has not taken place. 

1. The Messiah MUST be physically present in POWER
2. Jerusalem MUST be restored as the capital city of the nation of Israel

In Scripture, Zion is synonymous with the city of Jerusalem.  However, Zion can refer to the city of Jerusalem on earth throughout all dispensations and especially the city of Jerusalem as the center of the world-wide dominion of Jesus during the Millennial Kingdom.  During this one-thousand-year rule with a “rod of iron,” Jesus reigns on earth as the Great Prophet, High Priest of a Melchizedecan Priesthood, and King of kings.  Jesus will rule over the population of the world during the Kingdom Age through the instrumentality of His faithful new Priesthood of all Church Age believers.  At the beginning of the Kingdom Age, the Church will be grafted into restored and revived national Israel.

Replacement Theology demands an allegorical interpretation of prophecy.  Allegorical interpretation of Scripture means the prophetic words of the Bible have “hidden spiritual meaning that transcends the literal sense of a sacred text.”[1]  Allegorical interpretation of Scripture allows a person to read almost any imagination or supposition into the Scripture.  For instance, when Replacement Theology comes to Scripture with the presupposition that God has cast away the nation of Israel and replaced Israel with the Church, that supposition demands an allegorical interpretation be used for all prophecy.  This means these people use two different methods to interpret the Bible (double Hermeneutic).  They claim a literal interpretation for most of the Bible while using an allegorical method for prophecy (and anything else that does not fit their theology). 

Therefore, when a person using a grammatical/historical method of interpretation of the Bible is in a discussion with such people, it is important to understand that these two methodologies are incompatible.  In other words, do not expect to make much progress in convincing a person using an allegorical methodology of his errors. 

Zechariah chapter two certainly establishes God’s intent for a literal interpretation of prophecy.  We know this especially because of Zechariah 2:1-5.  In this text. God is establishing a literal Jerusalem that can be physically measured (compare Revelation 11:1-2).  If this was an allegorical, mystical Jerusalem there would be no possibility of physically measuring it.  This is a physical Kingdom Age Jerusalem with measurements and boundaries, although no physical walls to protect against invasions.  Jesus is the Protector of this physical Jerusalem. 

Secondly, the Jerusalem of the Kingdom Age should not be confused with the Jerusalem of the New Heaven/Earth created after the Kingdom Age in the New Genesis

1 And I saw a new {kainos} heaven and a new {kainos} earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. 2 And I John saw the holy city, new {kainos} Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. 5 And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new {kainos}. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. 6 And he said unto me, It is done {everything God said He would do is finished, including the New Genesis} I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. 7 He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. 8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death” (Revelation 21:1-8).

The modern Zionist Movement is credited to have begun through a book entitled Der Judenstaat (meaning The Jew’s State) published in 1896 A.D. by a Jew named Theodor Herzl.  Herzl described his vision of the founding of a future Jewish state during the twentieth century that would be independent of another overlord nation.  However, the modern Zionist Movement is predominantly secular and therefore is disconnected from looking for a coming Messiah to physically reign over Zion.  This is important because Bible believers should not confuse the Zionist Movement with Biblical Zionism. 

Biblical Zionism is Kingdom Age Dispensationalism where Jesus will physically reign on the restored throne of David over twelve literal tribes of a literal and physical national Israel with Jerusalem as its capital.  All faithful Church Age believers will reign with Jesus.  In Revelation 2:18-29, Jesus is speaking to professing believers in the church of Thyatira.  It is important to understand that Jesus is speaking so we understand that the pronouns He uses is referring to faithful believers.

26 And he {believers} that overcometh {saved; I John 5:4-5}, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him {the faithful believer} will I give power over the nations: 27 And he {the faithful believer} shall rule them {the people of the Kingdom age} with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers {divided into small city states}: even as I received of my Father” (Revelation 2:26-27).

Why is knowing these things important to every true Christian?  Knowing these things is important to every true Christian because every true Christian is commanded to be involved in winning souls to Christ by preaching the Gospel.  Every true Christian is commanded to make disciples of all nations, which involves them in understanding these truths and teaching them to others.  We cannot teach what we do not know.

Psalm 122 gives us many details about Kingdom Age Zionism.  As we read Psalm 122, remember that Zechariah 2:5 tells us that the protecting “walls” of the Kingdom Age Jerusalem will be Jesus.  Zechariah 2:5 does not say the Kingdom Age Jerusalem will be without walls, but that Jerusalem will be “inhabited as towns without walls.”

1 A Song of degrees of David. I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD. 2 Our feet shall stand within thy gates, O Jerusalem. 3 Jerusalem is builded as a city that is compact together: 4 Whither the tribes go up, the tribes of the LORD, unto the testimony of Israel, to give thanks unto the name of the LORD. 5 For there are set thrones of judgment, the thrones of the house of David. 6 Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee. 7 Peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces. 8 For my brethren and companions’ sakes, I will now say, Peace be within thee. 9 Because of the house of the LORD our God I will seek thy good” (Psalm 122:1-9).

The Jews during the 1800’s remained dispersed throughout the nations of the world, especially in Europe.  There were many Jews predominant in almost every field of science and business.  The Rothchild family (Jews) controlled most of European wealth through their banking system.  Nonetheless, there was a prevailing attitude of Anti-Semitism in Europe and around the world.  Roman Catholicism, Lutheranism, and most Reformed denominations hated the Jews. 

6 Ho, ho, come forth, and flee from the land of the north, saith the LORD: for I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heaven, saith the LORD. 7 Deliver thyself, O Zion, that dwellest with the daughter of Babylon. 8 For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: for he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye. 9 For, behold, I will shake mine hand upon them, and they shall be a spoil to their servants: and ye shall know that the LORD of hosts hath sent me” (Zechariah 2:6-9).

The preincarnate Jehovah in the form of a “man” (Zechariah 2:1) is still speaking.  He is also “the LORD of hosts” (Zechariah 2:6).  Anytime the KJV uses the word “LORD” with all capital letters, it is translating the Name Jehovah.  Zechariah 2:6-9 tells us that Jehovah dispersed the Jews into all the Gentile nations of the world and it is Jehovah who calls the Jews back to the land of Israel.  “[T]he daughter of Babylon” refers to all Gentile nations and corrupt religions occupied by the children of Israel.  Although God is again assembling the Jews in our present time in the land of promise, Zechariah 2:6-9 is the Kingdom Age call of Jesus, the “King of kings and Lord of lords” (Revelation 19:16).  The return of the faithful remnant at the time of Zechariah was only typical of what Jesus will do at the beginning of the Kingdom Age.  “Ho, ho” of Zechariah means “Alas, alas.”  It is the final proclamation by the LORD to the dispersed Jews around the world to gather themselves to Jerusalem.  Only believing saved Jews will obey. 

11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. 12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. 13 And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. 14 And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. 15 And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. 16 And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” (Revelation 19:11-16).

In Zechariah 2:7, Jehovah says, “Deliver thyself, O Zion, that dwellest with the daughter of Babylon.”  The “daughter of Babylon” is the Gentile political powers of the world in which the children of Israel had grown comfortable.  Even though a large remnant at the time of Zechariah had returned to Jerusalem to labor rebuilding the city and the Temple, the vast majority of Jews were satisfied to languish in the comforts and wealth of their captors.  Zechariah 2:7 addresses the same problem in the last days prior to the second coming of Jesus.  During the last three and a half years of the seven-year Tribulation, Jehovah will use “two witnesses” and one-hundred and forty-four thousand sealed Jews to preach the Gospel to the Jews as they are called to return to their land of promise (these are NOT the cult of Jehovah Witnesses).  In Revelation 17:5, God reveals that the “daughter of Babylon” in Zechariah 2:7 is offspring of the “MOTHER OF HARLOTS.” 

1 And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters: 2 With whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication. 3 So he carried me away in the spirit into the wilderness: and I saw a woman sit upon a scarlet coloured beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns. 4 And the woman was arrayed in purple and scarlet colour, and decked with gold and precious stones and pearls, having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication: 5 And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. 6 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus: and when I saw her, I wondered with great admiration” (Revelation 17:1-6). 

The greatest apostasy corrupting Biblical Christianity can be traced back to Constantine’s integration of paganism in with Christianity when he declared the Roman Empire to be Christian.  In doing so, Constantine would lay the foundations for the Roman Catholic Church and thereby paganized the vast majority of Christianity.  Augustine would systemize the theology of Roman Catholicism.  Roman Catholicism has persecuted Jews wherever they were found.  The Roman Catholic Christian Crusades was to take the Holy Land of Israel from Muslim control for Roman Catholicism.  Roman Catholicism claims that the first church in Jerusalem was the first Roman Catholic Church and is the mother of all churches everywhere. 

The San Giovanni Laterno Church is the first church of Rome.  An inscription on the front of the church (translated from Latin) says, “MOST HOLY LATERAN CHURCH, MOTHER AND MISTRESS OF ALL CHURCHES OF THE CITY AND THE WORLD.”  God calls this “Mother and Mistress” “the great whore” and “THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS.”  She gave birth to religious apostasy within Christianity.  The believers in Heaven will rejoice at God’s judgment of “the great whore,” which corrupted the world with her false beliefs and apostasy. 

“For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand” (Revelation 19:2).

          Some of the apostasy introduced by Augustine through Roman Catholicism was the corruption of a literal one-thousand-year Kingdom Age.  Augustine introduced an allegorical/mystical interpretation of the end times that came to be known as Preterism.  The word Preterism comes from the Latin word praeter meaning past or beyondPreterists, those who believe in Preterism, believe that all (full Preterism) of the events, or most (partial Preterism), of the book of Revelation took place before 70 A.D.  Since the Apostle John was given “the Revelation of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 1:1) in 96 A.D., the Preterists believed John was just giving an interpretation of past events that had already happened.  There is but one word for this nonsense – FOOLISHNESS!  

Anonymous comments will not be allowed. Numerous studies and series are available free of charge for local churches at: http://www.disciplemakerministries.org/ Dr. Lance Ketchum serves the Lord as a Church Planter, Evangelist/Revivalist. He has served the Lord for over 40 years.