TODAY'S FOUNDATIONS DEVOTIONAL: Tribulation judgement of Israel
When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him,
then He will sit on the throne of His glory. And He will set the sheep on His
right hand, but the goats on the left.
(Matthew 25:31, 33)
In considering this special judgement of Israel, it is helpful to observe two general principles according to which God deals with the human race: in blessing and in judgement. These may be briefly stated as follows.
1. A principle of blessing. God normally blesses the Gentiles through the Jews, but He blesses the Jews directly.
2. A principle of punishment. God normally punishes the Jews through the Gentiles, but He punishes the Gentiles directly.
These two principles will direct God’s dealings with the human race at the close of the present age.
First, in the closing stages of the great tribulation, God will judge and punish Israel for the last time as a nation, through the instrumentality of the Gentiles. When this final judgement of Israel is complete, God Himself will intervene directly in judgement upon the Gentiles. Jeremiah describes this final judgement upon Israel after they have returned as a nation to their own land.
“For behold, the days are coming,” says the Lord, “that I will bring back from captivity My people Israel and Judah,” says the Lord. “And I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it.” Now these are the words that the Lord spoke concerning Israel and Judah. For thus says the Lord: “We have heard a voice of trembling, Of fear, and not of peace. Ask now, and see, whether a man is ever in labour with child? So why do I see every man with his hands on his loins like a woman in labour, And all faces turned pale? Alas! For that day is great, So that none is like it; and it is the time of Jacob’s trouble, But he shall be saved out of it. For it shall come to pass in that day,” Says the Lord of hosts, “That I will break his yoke from your neck, And will burst your bonds; foreigners shall no more enslave them. But they shall serve the Lord their God, And David their king, whom I will raise up for them” (Jer. 30:3-9).
Notice the order of events here foretold by Jeremiah.
1. God will bring Israel back to their own land.
2. There will be for Israel a time of national peril and distress, more terrible than any that they have previously passed through.
3. The Lord Himself will eventually intervene against the foreigners – the Gentile enemies of Israel – and will save Israel from them.
4. The national kingdom of Israel will again be restored upon the throne of David, under the supreme government of the Lord Jesus Himself. This period of the restored kingdom will be the millennium.
This end-time gathering of the Gentile nations against Israel, and the direct intervention of the Lord on behalf of Israel, are further described in Zechariah.
And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it (Zech. 12:3).
Heavenly Father, what a privilege it is to live in this special time, in which
You work on the fulfilment of Your plan with the people of Israel and the
world history ... Thank You Lord for Your mighty hand upon Your children
and let it be that light will radiate from our lives proclaiming salvation.