" and Jerusalem will be trampled down by the Gentiles until the time of the Gentiles has run its course." Luke 21:24

The Times of the gentiles

What - when are the times of the Gentiles ?

Thoughts prompted by listening to the excellent studies (15 hours) on the Book of daniel by Chuck Missler.

Starts in Daniel

Daniel, a prince from Jerusalem is taken hostage in Bavel/Babylon and rises to a position of authority because the spirit of God is clearly seen in him. Through the course of the book, He is given prophetic insight into the unfolding of history from then through the so called "silent years" between the Hebrew Bible and New Testament times. So the yeaars were not exactly silent, as God revealed world events in advance for that period.

So God reveals the rise and fall of empires and the eventual rise of God's eternal kingdom. Babylon (head of Gold) is defeated by Medo-Persia (chest and arms of silver) is defeated by Greece (Alexander the Great) (belly of bronze) and this empire falls to Rome (iron). Rome was not defeated, but fell apart (iron and clay)

All of this comes to pass. As Missler points out, the Book of Daniel could not have been written after the events took place, as some sceptics suggest. The book of Daniel was accepted as part of the canon of the Hebrew Bible and was translated as such into the (Greek) Septuagint between 285 and 270 BC/BCE.

Missler also points out that Daniel starts in Hebrew but goes into the Babylonian language of Aramaic for the stuff about the gentile world - the times of the Gentiles. The times of the Jews have been, in some way, been put on hold until the Messiah comes. Missler also explains how Daniel is given an outline of the number of days until the Messiah is cut off, and the time period has been calcuated and agrees exactly with the prophetic word given to Daniel.

So - one can see that "the times of the Gentiles" does not exactly tie up with "the church age" - whatever that means.

During the times of the Gentiles

Jesus/Yeshua the Messiah comes and is cut off as predicted - He gives his life for the sins of the world, having preached the Kingdom to the Jews and some Gentiles. After being resurrected, he sent out the followers he had been training up, to take the message to the world / nations / Goyim / Gentiles.

The body of (Jewish) believers grew and spread, and started to include grafted in Gentiles to form what might be called the Church - The One New Man. (Although what is called the Church today might not be what Jesus sees as his church. The one new man includes both Jews and Gentiles who follow Yeshua / Jesus the Messiah.

Meanwhile, the Jews that rejected Yeshua as the Messiah wrote him out of the story, and after their Temple was destroyed and they were scattered into their longest exile re-formed Judaism to function without the presence of God in Jerusalem. But this is not the end of the Jews - merely the PAUSE button has been pressed and the clock given to Daniel has stopped with a week yet to run.

Remember - the present time IS the endtimes and has been since Jesus came.

The end of the times of the Gentiles

This is where there is much scope for argument about the exact sequence, but this is not the point. The point is that God has revealed in advance what will happen so that we may believe when we see it come to pass.

The return of Jesus / Yeshua the Messiah is obviously the key event, but its exact timing might not be the cut off date exactly.

The sequence of events and their implications are yet to be revealed in some respects, and Daniel's clock gives us no clues until it restarts for the final week of years, that appears to be the seven years of the Tribulation. We are then into areas of different opinions about when during this time Jesus will collect his people and how that ties to his return. The Rapture, as the event of Jesus gathering his people is known can be divisive, but one thing appears clear is that the Jews and Gentiles (while some of each are included in Jesus' one new man") still retain a separate place in God's plan.

It would appear that when Jesus/Yeshua the Messiah comes/returns the window of opportunity for the Gentiles will be closed, but God will then turn again to Israel as he pours out the spirit of Grace and supplication (Zech 12:10) and All Israel will be saved (Romans 11:26)

So Jesus' return appears to be the end of the Times of the Gentiles as far as salvation is concerned, but politically one might argue that the times of the Gentiles ends with the fall of Babylon (Revelation 14:8) Is this the same as the fullness of the Gentiles? (Romans 11:25 - "stoniness, to a degree, has come upon Isra'el, until the Gentile world enters in its fullness;" Probably.

Some folks are looking forward to a big endtimes revival but Paul (2 Thes 2:3) spoke of a falling away. But there will certainly be a major revival when Messiah reveals himself to Israel. Sadly, scripture appears to teach that this will be the time of the Gog Magog (Ezekiel 38) attack on Israel and will result in much suffering (Jacob's trouble?) of which Jesus warned (the Jews) of the need to flee to the hills without stopping for anything.(Matthew 24:17)

It would be nice to have all the dates laid out on a timelines graphic. But it would obviously have to leave some dates floating, as Jesus told us that nobody knows the day of his return (only the Father) If I ever get to work one out, I promise to publish it. But it appears that clever scholars can not agree on the sequence of all the relevant prophecies, as different prophecies might to refer to the same event - or might not. This is what leaves room for different expectations for the Rapture.

"End Times Revival ?" I doubt it, for the Gentiles. Falling away is prophesied - seek faithfulness and revival by all means, but it won't just come along globally.

But yes, there is a major revival for the Jews after the end of the Times of The Gentiles.


Posted 30/05/14

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