Why The Return of Jesus Christ May Be Near-Part 2–5/18/08

Why The Return of Jesus Christ May Be Near Part 2

Why The Return Of

Jesus Christ May Be Near

 

Part 2 – THE TRIGGER SIGN:

2 Events Re-start the Ticking

of the Prophetic Time Clock

 

By

R.A. Coombes

 

Author of
“America, The Babylon: Vols 1 & 2”
and Publisher of
The Alpha-Omega Report
www.aoreport.com

 
There are two critical events which have taken place in recent history which were predicted in Biblical Prophecy. These 2 events were predicted by Jesus Christ and He indicated that at least some of those who witnessed these fulfillments would also see all of these other prophecies fulfilled including His Return.

Yet, Jesus Christ also made other predictions that would transpire soon after His death, resurrection and ascension back to heaven. These predictions would precede the “last days” by an indeterminate amount of time.

Jesus stated that in the future, the Jews in Israel would be dispersed from the land of Israel and Jerusalem would be destroyed. He even gave a few details as a warning of this prophecy.
Let’s look at what He stated:
Luke 21: 1- 9

“And he looked up, and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury.

” And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites.

” And he said, Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all:

“For all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her penury hath cast in all the living that she had.

“And as some spake of the temple, how it was adorned with goodly stones and gifts, he said,

“As for these things which ye behold, the days will come, in the which there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.

“And they asked him, saying, Master, but when shall these things be? and what sign will there be when these things shall come to pass?

“And he said, Take heed that ye be not deceived: for many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and the time draweth near: go ye not therefore after them.

“But when ye shall hear of wars and commotions, be not terrified: for these things must first come to pass; but the end is not by and by.

Later in His discourse, Jesus explains further in verses 20-24

“And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.

“Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter there into.

 “For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.

“But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.

“And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. 

 

So, Jesus reveals that Jerusalem must be destroyed and the Jews dispersed from the land – until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled
When the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled, Jesus will return in glory to establish the Millennial Kingdom and Israel will be THE nation by which and through which Jesus Christ rules the world for 1,000 years as revealed in Revelation 19. He also notes this in Luke 21 and verse 28 when he says:

“And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.”

This passage relates to a description of other events in verses 25-27 which unfold during a seven year period of Great Tribulation, just prior to His Return.

Keep in mind that His discourse intersperses a description of events surrounding both the downfall of Jerusalem and events that will unfold at the end of the Gentile era – just before His Return.

Now, Jesus’ words are not the only prophecies concerning the dispersal again of the Jews. We also find other prophecies on this event in the Old Testament. For example, the prophet, Amos states:

Amos 9:14-15

“And I will bring again the captivity of my people of Israel, and they shall build the waste cities, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and drink the wine thereof; they shall also make gardens, and eat the fruit of them.

“And I will plant them upon their land, and they shall no more be pulled up out of their land which I have given them, saith the LORD thy God.”

In Zephaniah 3:9 we find the prophet indicating that after the regathering of the Jews into Israel, their language would be restored – the Hebrew language.

“For then will I turn to the people a pure language, that they may all call upon the name of the LORD, to serve him with one consent.”

There are other prophecies indicating this, including the prophet Ezekiel who goes on to speak of the valley of the “dry bones” in the latter days and a building of an all-new temple, not merely restoring Solomon’s original temple as Herod did.

So, we not only have Jesus’ words predicting the dispersion of the Jews and their eventual return but also of the Old Testament Prophets.

Now Jesus also spoke of the re-gathering of the Jews to Israel at a time just before His Return. We find this aspect in the following statements from Luke 21: 29-33

“And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees;

“When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand.

“So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.

“Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.

“Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.”

Now, here in the passage, Jesus speaks using a form of parable with the metaphor of Israel being likened to a ‘fig tree.’  It is also considered by the Jews to be a symbol of the coming of the Messiah, according to the Jewish Encyclopedia and the online Wikipedia entry.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fig_Tree

“The Jewish Encyclopedia states that the fig tree is a symbol of the coming of the Mashiach:”

It should be noted that the fig tree produces 2 crops in a year. See link to Purdue University’s horticulture page on figs. LINK HERE.

http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/morton/fig.html#Season

This suggests a 2 fold return or a 2-fold harvest yet to come.

Timing of the fig harvest in Israel is interesting. Israel produces a variety of fig called the Nazareth. It is grown throughout the country. It’s maturation time frame for the first harvest or “breba” is anywhere between mid-April to late June, depending on which area of the country it is being grown. This understanding comes from the website of the International Society for Horticultural Science which states:

“maturation from mid April in the Jordan Valley (300 m below sea level) to late June in the Galilee mountains.”  See below.

http://www.actahort.org/books/480/480_23.htm

Now it should be noted that Jesus does not reference the harvest of figs as such – only the “shooting forth” of the tree. That term in the original Greek text is the Greek word “pro-ball-oh” (Strong’s Concordance Reference # 4261) which means literally “to throw forward” or in reference to a tree or plant – to shoot out or put forth branches or leaves or to germinate. The idea is of new-ness, freshness or a fresh growth or a fresh start.
.
The idea of this metaphor is that the “shooting forth” or “leafing out” comes very early in the growing season, well before the Harvest.

The symbolism carried over as a metaphor for Israel indicates that those who see Israel having new life after being dormant for nearly 1900 years should realize that this is the triggering sign for all other prophetic signs.
It is, in other words a “marking sign” for timing purposes. Why?

In verse 31, Jesus states that when Israel is shooting out, then you should know that the Kingdom of God (the Messianic – millennial reign of Christ) is at hand. That development occurs AFTER the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. Of course prior to His coming we also have the Great Tribulation and the Antichrist. So that, Jesus is indicating that Israel’s rebirth is a timing Sign indicating that ALL of these other prophecies will occur between the re-birth of Israel and His Second Coming.

In verse 32, we find out that the generation of people who see Israel’s re-birth will not die out before His Second Coming.

“Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled.”

The use of the term, “verily” is a term of absolute certainty or solemnity. It is the Greek word “amen.” So, in this verse, instantly at the very beginning, Jesus asserts that what follows is absolute certainty. What does He assert?

This “generation” shall not “pass away” until everything (He has predicted) is fulfilled, which includes His Second Coming.

So the generation at the time of Israel’s “shooting forth” or “re-birth” will not die off until all of these other predicted events occur.

Question: What is a generation in this context?

The answer is not so simple as it might seem. Why? There are multiple generations at any given point in time. You have the generation that is just being born. You have another generation that is youth, another that is younger adults and a generation that is mature and generally in command and an old generation that is very aged and dying out. So which generation is Jesus referring to?

We are now 60 years advanced since Israel’s re-birth. The aged generation of 1948 or those who we could say were 65+ have died out. The generation that was “in their prime” of say ages 40 to 65 are almost died out. The younger generation of adults at that time aged 18 to 40 are in very advanced age. The youth of that time – ages 2 through 18 are also now in advanced or in their “golden” years. This youngest generation like the other generations have or are now passing the “leadership torch” to the generation born at the time of Israel or shortly thereafter. Today, we generally call this new leadership generation, the “Baby Boomer” generation, which is now maturing and has assumed the primary leadership role.

It is, even now, hard to know which generation that Christ is referencing. Yet even the youngest generation – the one born at the time of Israel’s birth – the “Boomer” generation is growing old.

When we look at the time overall time frame however, at the “least case” scenario, we can consider that someone born in 1948 will still be around to witness the fulfillment of all of these other prophecies.  If so, then on that basis, with perhaps a few folks born in 1948 living for 100 years we could see the time frame stretch out to the year 2048.

However, there is yet another caveat to considering such a time frame.

Israel did not control ALL of Jerusalem until 1967. That means that 19 years transpired before Israel gained control of all of Jerusalem. Some prophecy scholars believe that 1967 may well be the real starting point for configuring a generation. Interestingly enough, however, is that the generation which saw the rebirth of Israel is coming ‘of age’ when all of Jerusalem was retaken by Israel. Yet on a worst case scenario for time configuration purposes of a generation – we could be looking as far out as the year 2067 or thereabout.

There is however, yet one more caveat for consideration in time configuration and it’s a Biblical one.

When Israel rebelled against God after leaving Egypt and refused to believe that Canaan could be conquered, despite God’s telling them that they could with His help, God cursed the generation and stated that all of the adults at the time would die out and not enter Canaan, except for a few young ones, who did believe, such as Joshua. The Biblical texts tell us that the Israelites then wandered in the wilderness for 40 years until that generation died out. This gives us some precedence for considering that a generation might well be 40 years.

On such a basis as a 40 year generation – and given the 1967 date for the restoration of all of Jerusalem to Israel – 40 years will have transpired since June 8, 1967 on June 7, 2008, which completes the 40th year.

That date would transpire in the middle of a multiple timing window.

June 7, 2008 is in the 60th year since Israel’s re-birth and still 40 years since the retaking of all of Jerusalem. Both are significant numbers in Biblical numerology.

This does not mean though, that something is going to transpire on that date of before. Perhaps though, it does mean that we are passing a key time point for the beginning of the various prophecies.

Let me assert here, however, that I am not being dogmatic in asserting anything. I’m merely pointing out some interesting statistics that may or may not have any bearing on fulfillment of prophetic events.

Another fact for consideration concerns demographic trends in Israel itself and among Jews around the world. The Jewish population is shrinking even in Israel. Why? There is a combination of factors.

To understand these factors, readers need to understand what constitutes a person being considered a Jew. Being Jewish is not about a religious belief according to conservative Jews and rabbinical teachings. It is based on the female DNA and not that of the male. Thus, to be Jewish is to be born of a Jewish mother who’s mother was Jewish and past lineage continually traced by the female DNA. Biblicallly, Jewish women were only permitted to marry Jewish men.

#1. In the past generations, Jewish women were only allowed to marry Jewish men. In the modern era, that is changing. More often in the modern era, Jewish women are marrying gentile men and leaving behind their Jewish roots.

#2. With the rise of abortion in the modern era, there are indications that abortion by Jewish women constitutes a threat to maintaining or increasing the Jewish population both worldwide and in Israel.

#3. With women’s liberation, birth control, and to a lesser extent perhaps economics and also with the rise of lesbianism, Jewish women are producing fewer births than in past generations. In other words, Jewish fertility rates are far less than with other races and religions. See link here.

#4. In the case of Israel’s population, the nation’s population includes non-Jews, primarily Arabs. The Arab population is growing at a phenomenal percentage rate of the overall population of Israel. New demographic studies project that within the next 50 to 60 years, Israel’s population will be primarily composed of Arabs as the majority of the overall population.

This last statistic is perhaps the most important in regards to prophetic fulfillment. Unless trends shift, within the next two generations, the nation of Israel will no longer be primarily Jewish. IF this is occurs, then the prophecies become incapable of fulfillment. Thus, it would seem that we have a time window for the fulfillment of the Biblical Prophecies that will close shut in the next 50 to 60 years or perhaps even sooner. So it would seem that we have a window of opportunity for prophetic fulfillment that ranges from the present moment and perhaps as long as another 60 years.

There is a caveat to this. It should be noted that earlier demographic studies had erred in projections that the Arab population would constitute a majority in Israel..
A 1960 study projected that Arabs would compromise a majority of Israel’s population by 1995. A later study rolled back the date to 2005 and still another to 2015 and yet another to 2020. These projections were faulty, based in part upon faulty census statistics provided by the Arabs and also by increased immigration rates by Jews from around the world moving to Israel. This latter issue though may well be diminishing in the future as already, Israel now constitutes a majority of the world’s population of Jews.

For more on the Arab-demographic factors – see the link below and look for section number 5.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arab_citizens_of_Israel#Perceived_demographic_threat
REVIEW:

Let’s step back and review all the information that we’ve presented thus far. The question arises: Do we see any indications that the “Signs” that were predicted are about to occur or perhaps are in the process of fulfillment?

The answer seems to be in the affirmative. The next two parts of this series of articles will address these prophetic signs and point to evidences suggesting fulfillment is either now developing or close at hand. This will be particularly the case with Part 4 – the natural signs predicted in the scriptures, in part because these are elements that involve a progression or ongoing trends as opposed to simply a singularly event at a given moment in time of short duration.

We have a prophetic element by the Old Testament prophets as well as by Jesus Christ which is essentially a prediction that functions as a Trigger Sign indicating that once this event occurs, some people who were alive when it happens will be alive at His Second Coming and thus all predictive events that are predicted to transpire between the Trigger Sign and His Second Coming will be witnessed by these people – meaning His Second Coming is CLOSE AT HAND, in relative terms.

The Trigger Sign is perhaps in 2 parts:

#1. Israel re-birthed as a nation in May of 1948.

#2. Israel regains control of ALL of Jerusalem in June of 1967.

Now let’s move on and see what other prophetic “signs” are flashing out a warning in Part 3 of our article series.

Part 1 – Introduction

Part 2 –THE TRIGGER SIGNS – 2 Events Started The Ticking Time Clock

Part 3 – Signs in the Geo-Political World Now Developing 

Part 4 – Signs in Nature Now Developing

Part 5 – An Overview of a Key Biblical Prophecies Awaiting Fulfillment

Part 6 – Why Believers Need To Know & Follow Prophetic Developments


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