Category Archives: Israel

REV 11:2 AND ISRAEL CAST OUT (3)

Stephen stoned 2PMW 2021-075 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

In this blog I continue the thought introduced in my last one. That is, I am continuing to show that Israel was excommunicated by God in AD 70. This is the third in a series on Rev 11:2, and the second in this two-part installment on excommunication. You will need to read the other installments for context.

Corporate Excommunication

The symbolic impact of the temple’s destruction should reinforce the theological reality of her corporate excommunication, for the loss of the temple indicates the removal of the favorable presence of God (2Ch 7:20; Jer 7:14–15). At the end of Rev we learn regarding “the [new] city” of God that “outside [exō] are the dogs” (22:15; cp. Php 3:2). After the vision of the temple’s call for destruction, John hears the seventh angel declare: “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever” (11:15b). Continue reading

REV 11:2 AND ISRAEL CAST OUT (2)

Ancient synagoguePMW 2021-074 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.
In Rev 11:2 we find an important clue to the meaning of the message of Revelation. In this passage we learn that the outer court of the temple is to be cast out. The external court represents the external husk of ancient Judaism, as viewed over against the true essence of Israel. John is here reflecting on Christ’s words in Luke 21:24.

In my last blog article I began a consideration of the significance of the word “cast out” as it applies to the temple’s rejection in AD 70. This is the second installment, highlighting another concept lying behind the image. Continue reading

REV 11:2: ISRAEL CAST OUT (1)

Jesus casting outPMW 2021-073 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Rev 11:1-2 is an important passage in John’s drama about Israel’s judgment. There John receives a command to actually engage an action in his visionary experience:

“Get up and measure the temple of God and the altar, and those who worship in it. Leave out the court which is outside the temple and do not measure it, for it has been given to the nations; and they will tread under foot the holy city for forty-two months.” Continue reading

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF AD 70

Temple destroyedPMW 2021-060 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Today we are so distant from the events of AD 70, so removed from the ancient culture, so little acquainted with the first-century Jewish outlook, and so accustomed to the Christian perspective, we tend to overlook the enormous redemptive-historical significance of AD 70. Those events are not merely another sad instance in the history of “man’s inhumanity to man which makes countless thousands mourn.” They serve not as demonstration of “nature, red in tooth and claw.” Neither do they merely remind us of “the carnage of war, the blood-swollen god.”

But such is mistaken. Rather the devastating events of the Jewish War are the historical manifestations of the furious wrath of the offended God of Israel. Transcendent realities stand back of these temporal events. With Nahum we see the smoke of destruction as the dust clouds from God’s feet (Na 1). We learn that truly “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (Heb 10:27) for “our God is a consuming fire” (Heb 10:31). Continue reading

MATTHEW 23:39, DISPENSATIONALISM & PRETERISM

PMW 2021-047 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Matt. 23:39 is a favorite statement by Jesus that dispensationalism cling to as evidence of the future conversion of Israel. Read through their lens, it seems to state that Israel will one day be converted, and only then will the great tribulation begin (according to the order of verses following Matt 23:39). They hold that this would confirm dispensationalism and undermine preterism and postmillennialism.

Matthew 23:39 read:

“For I say to you, from now on you shall not see Me until you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’”

Continue reading

DISPENSATIONALISM, JERUSALEM, AND SACRIFICES

Lamb sacrificePMW 2021-040 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

I try to keep up with correspondence as best I can. So in this posting, I am answering a question sent to me from a reader.

Reader question:

I have two questions on how you might respond to some Dispensational explanations of Ezekiel 40-48. (1) Some dispensationalists argue that the dimensions of Ezekiel’s temple are not a problem because the topography of the land will be radically changed in the millennium. They cite Zechariah 14 in defense of this topographical reconfiguration. They also cite the following passages to argue that Jerusalem will be much larger than what it is today: Jer. 31:38-40; Ezk. 48:30-35; Zech. 14;10-11. (2) The other thing relates to Ezekiel’s sacrificial system. They state that since the apostles did not have a problem with sacrifice in the New Testament, then why should we see it as problematic in the millennium? They cite Acts 21:17-26 in support of the idea that the apostles did not have a problem with sacrifice as a memorial and that Ezekiel’s sacrifices will have some efficacy for the unregenerate who are present in the millennium.

I have noticed that recently many Dispensationalists have felt the pressure of Covenant Theologians and have started an attempt to go on the offensive with their system via the internet and find ways to get around Covenant objections. Continue reading

NEW COVENANT CHURCH & OLD ISRAEL

New Covenant IsraelPMW 2021-039 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

As noted on various occasions, I do try to answer questions sent in by my readers. I hope that these answers will be be helpful not only for the individuals who asked them, but for anyone who is interested in studying biblical eschatology. So, here goes today’s question:

Reader’s question:

Dispensationalists point out that God promises the new covenant to Israel only. The Jeremiah 31 text clearly mentions only “the house of Israel and the house of Judah.” How can we say that the new covenant finds fulfillment in the Church?

My response:

Thanks for your question. I hope the following brief answer will be helpful. First, please note that Jesus and Paul both apply the new covenant to the Church. Continue reading