By Nathan Jones
Will world peace become a reality?
New Year's greetings to all of you! To ring in this new year, Dr. David Reagan, Dennis Pollock of Spirit of Grace Ministries and I discussed on television's Christ in Prophecy six reasons why all who profess to be Christians should earnestly desire that this year would prove to be the year when the Church will be raptured out of this world.
Reason #4: The Nations at Peace
Dr. Reagan: The fourth reason that I would like to see Jesus return is because I want to see the nations receive what they have been promised; namely peace, righteousness, and justice.
Dennis Pollock: Amen! In Psalm 2 the Father says to the Son, "Ask me." What a nice thing for the Father to say, "Ask me and I will give you the nations as your inheritance." And that is going to happen. The Bible not only says that Jesus inherits them, but we are going to have a part in all of that inheritance.
Dr. Reagan: Yes, and you mentioned Psalm 2. Right before that portion that you quoted it says that all the leaders of the world are in conspiracy against God and His anointed One. Shaking their fists at God they are saying like, "Who are you to tell us what we can do and what we cannot do." Then it says, while they are doing that God sits in the heavens and laughs, because a day is coming when He is going to set it all alright.
Dennis Pollock: Yeah! The thing that makes prophecy so exciting is that when you read this and you say, "You know what? I believe it's going to happen just like it says." It's thrilling!
It's wonderful to think of Christ reigning over the nations. Isaiah 24 talks about how the Lord will reign gloriously in Jerusalem before His elders. Of course, there are some who say, "Surely that can't be." But, what part of "the Lord will reign in Jerusalem" do you not understand? The Lord will reign in Jerusalem. That's a thrilling thought to think about, that Jesus is actually going to come to this earth. Jesus said He would come again, and so He will do that. He will reign gloriously over this earth and He will be Lord.
Dr. Reagan: That's the problem I have with Amillennialists who tell me that Jesus is reigning right now. They say He's reigning from Heaven over all the nations of the world. But, I always respond, "Well, if He is, He's doing a terrible job of it, because every nation of the world is in rebellion against Him." But, what a day that is going to be when all the nations are truly subjected to Him.
Nathan Jones: They certainly haven't read Micah 4 which talks about all of the nations. It declares, "Nation will not take sword up against nation, nor will they train for war anymore." Think if we took the national economies, say something like 50%-60% of some of our budgets are put towards defense, and we put that money towards helping people and building and growing. To top it off, nobody would be killing each other. We would not be losing brothers and cousins and family members to Afghanistan and Iraq and all these other wars. No longer! What a world that would be. All of that money being given to agricultural implements instead of war would mean no more needy, no poor, and no food problems.
Dr. Reagan: What a day that will be!
Dennis Pollock: What's so pathetic, as World War I was coming to a close some of the leaders of the nations said we needed some kind of organization to make sure world war never happened again. They came up with the League of Nation, but that obviously didn't work out too well as World War II came along. As that war was coming to an end, some of the leaders including Roosevelt and some others declared that we needed a new organization and this new one will make sure that war doesn't happen again, and that was the United Nations. Well, we can see how that has worked out. Once Jesus Christ returns there will be that peace that everybody is looking for, but only then when the Prince of Peace comes.
Reason #5: Israel Receives Its Promises
Dr. Reagan: The fifth reason I want to see Jesus return is because I want to see Israel receive what they had been promised. What's that?
Dennis Pollock: They have been promised two major blessings. First off, which is the greatest blessing really, is that they would serve God from their hearts. People like to say Israel is a hard-hearted people and that God has washed His hands of them, but God has made some amazing promises to them.
I want to read a Scripture from Ezekiel. This is a scripture that is often misused to apply to Christians, and they'll claim, "When you got born again this is what happened to you." Now, that is true, but it was first promised to the Jews. God says to the Jews, "I will give you a new heart... I will put a new spirit within you... I'll take out your heart of stone... I will give you a heart of flesh... I will put my spirit in you. He says, "I'll cause you to walk in my statues, and you will keep my judgments... you will do them."
Now, God always keeps His promises. God does not depend on whether Israel does this or that, as God Himself is going to do what He wills to accomplish. For instance, God has promised that Jesus will reign. Christ will come and will reign over an obedient Jewish people, but not only obedient, they will be raised up to a place of primacy in the world.
Before Christ ascended His disciples asked Him, "Will you at this time restore the Kingdom to Israel?" And, it's very interesting what He didn't say. Jesus didn't reply, "Well, that's a stupid question! Why in the world would you ever think?" No, Jesus didn't say that. He just said, "It's not for you to know the times and seasons when this is going to happen." So, Jesus was indirectly saying it will happen, but you don't need to know about the timing of this right now.
So, there will be a time when Israel will be restored to a place of prominence on the earth. This persecuted people — a people who have been hated and despised like no other people — will be raised up. God always keeps His promises. We have all done various projects that we have just gotten tired of and just put them on a shelf and never finished them, but God's not that way. When God starts a project, He will finish it, and Israel is His project. What He has said He will do, He will do.
Nathan Jones: I think it's exciting that Zechariah 8:23 tells us what the world will finally be like for the believing Israel. It says, "In those days ten men from all languages and nations will take firm hold of one Jew by the hem of their robe and will say, 'Let us go with you because we have heard that God is with you.'"
Dr. Reagan: Boy, what a promise! Today the Jew is the object of jokes and hatred and persecution, but in that future day in time when the Jews are elevated as the prime nation of the world, everyone will want to walk with a Jew.
Nathan Jones: And, like Dennis said, the important difference is they will love the Lord Jesus as their Savior.
Dr. Reagan: That's the point. In Old Testament times they always ran to Egypt every time they got in trouble. Today they run to the United States. But, we are seeing the prophecies say that in the end times all nations will come against Israel, which includes the United States. We have seen our nation turn against Israel. A day will finally come when there will be nobody for Israel to turn to. At the end of the Tribulation the remnant that is left will finally turn their hearts to God, and they will cry out, "Baruch haba beshem adonai" which means "Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord," and the Lord will come. He will gather those believing Jews in a third regathering. We've had the regathering from Babylon, the regathering in unbelief going on right now, and a regathering in belief will finally come. They will be established as a prime nation of the world and all the blessings of the Lord will flow through the Jewish people to all the earth. What a day that will be!
In the last part of our discussion on six reasons why believers in Christ should be anxious for Jesus' return, we'll continue on to reason six and then share our personal reasons for wanting Christ to return quickly.