Did you know that the greater part of the citizenry of Israel is secular and not religious. How can that be?
We know that Israel fulfilled prophecy in becoming a nation among nations in 1948. The prophets foretold the gathering of the Jewish people in the latter days. Since all this was written beforehand, how can it be that so many Jews in Israel are either secular, and with a great many who are either atheists or agnostics?
Does that surprise you that many Jews are atheists? According to statistics a full 37% of the people of Israel are either atheists or agnostics. This makes Israel fourth on the list of nations with the highest percentage of atheists.
It is not as if the Bible leaves all this unsaid. The Bible is the only book in existence that records history before it happens. It would not be difficult to give an extended list of Scriptures to show just how relevant all this is to the days that we live in. Rather than do that, we can pick up a Scripture here and there that will make that point well enough.
Now for another surprise. There is a Rabbi in Jerusalem who is very much anti-missionary. Rabbi Tovia Singer of Jerusalem often places an ad in the Jerusalem Post to try to sell his anti-missionary tapes. Listen carefully to the following statement that is part of his ad.
“What Are We Doing Wrong, and What are They doing right? Why Have more Jews Converted to Christianity in the Last 19 Years than in the Last 1,900 Years?”
Now, if I were a Jew in Israel and read such a statement by a noted Rabbi, it would not make me want to buy Tovia’s tapes. It would make me want to look into WHY so many Jews were coming Christian.
The time clock of redemption was set in Jerusalem, 2000 years ago
It began with the rejection of the Lord Jesus, the Messiah and the King of Israel. When they rejected Jesus, they lost citizen rights to being the people of God. There is no kingdom without a king. The Jews who rejected Jesus, became a people without God. This does not mean that the people of Israel no longer figured into God’s plan for the ages. Quite the contrary. Their rejection of Jesus and God’s rejection of them as His people is well noted in Scripture. But also noted in Scripture is their coming to know Jesus as their Messiah.
I realize that the first thing that is thrown at anyone who would place the Jews in a bad light, is the term ‘anti-Semitic.’ But anyone who reads and studies the Scriptures knows how ridiculous that statement is. If someone like me is anti-Semitic, then Moses, the prophets, the apostles, and even Jesus would have to be called anti-Semitic. The very things that I share come from the writings of the Old Testament prophets, and the new covenant apostolic writers.
Actually it all goes back to the first books of the Bible, that is, to the writings of Moses. Moses wrote Genesis.
When Moses was about to leave the earthly scene, he sang a prophetic song over Israel. In this song Moses called attention to the falling away of Israel, of Israels wandering through the nations, of their peril of life, and of Israel’s return. Moses actually lays out the history of Israel. (Found in Deu32),
In his song, Moses says, “They have acted corrupted toward Him, they are not his children, because of their defect; but are a perverse and crooked generation.” (v5) Peter quotes from this verse of the song of Moses on the day of Pentecost.
Moses goes on to call them a foolish and an unwise people from whom He will hide His face. He says that God will make Israel jealous with a people who were not a people. He also says, “Would that they were wise, that they understood this, that they would discern their future.”
When God hid His face
The fact that God would hide His face from Israel is a theme that trances its way through the Bible. God speaks through the prophet Hosea, saying,
I will go away and return to My place until they acknowledge their guilt and seek My face; in their affliction they will earnestly seek Me.” (Hosea 5:15)
Recall what Jesus said over Jerusalem? “You will not see Me until you say, ’Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.”
Yet there is something else I need to share about Moses. Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible. Did you know that the rest of the Bible including the New Testament actually work out from the books of Moses? If there were no Genesis, the book of Revelation would make little sense, and thus and so.
I wish I had time to take my readers through the entire song of Moses. Hopefully many of you are already picking up on the prophetic elements in this song. But that is not the end of the story of Israel. Paul said,
For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?” (Rom11:15)
Does any of this tell us why Israel is so secular with so many atheists and agnostics among here citizenry? Yes, there is a lot to be said. There are two elements that help to understand this dilemma. For one thing, the Jews are only of late rediscovering Jesus for themselves. For the most part the Jews never knew that Jesus was Jewish and that He and the apostles were ’sabras.’ (Of the land.) They were led to believe that Jesus was some kind of Roman or Greek God. They are now intrigued with Jesus.
The people are turned off
A second issue is that their rabbis have misled them so often that the people by and large are turned off by the Jewish religion. The Bible also told us this would happen. God spoke through Isaiah, saying,
Therefore behold, I will once again deal marvelously with this people, wondrously marvelous; and the wisdom of their wise men [rabbis] will perish, and the discernment of their discernment men will be concealed.” (Isa 29:14)
But one major fact remains — In the heart of the Jew is a vacancy that can only be filled by the God of Israel Himself.
This is why so many Jews are finding Jesus as their Messiah. And this vacancy will be the turning point of the nation. Keep in mind what Jesus said, “Until you say, ‘blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.’
The prophet Zechariah told us how this would happen. Israel and Jerusalem are going to face a war in the not too distant future that will bring about this cry for Jesus. I would encourage my readers to read the whole of Zechariah 12.
Listen to this one verse:
I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of Grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn.” (Zech12:10)
What will happen to Israel? Paul said that all Israel would be saved. Listen:
For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery–so that you will not be wise in your own estimation–that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in; and so all Israel will be saved; just as it is written, “THE DELIVERER WILL COME FROM ZION, HE WILL REMOVE UNGODLINESS FROM JACOB. THIS IS MY COVENANT WITH THEM, WHEN I TAKE AWAY THEIR SINS.” (Rom 11:25-27)
Much love to be found in Jesus,