Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Harry Shepherd Prophecy 6

This is the sixth installment of my grandfather's prophecy book. I present his words exactly as they were in 1960. They are very interesting from a historical perspective.
IV. How Far Has God Progressed With This Program?
When the Lord began with it, naturally, He must begin with number one the formation of the nation. Then the second one would be the providing of a land in which to place the nation. With this people still in existence but in a world-wide dispersion we would naturally expect this order to be reversed when God began his work of bringing the Abrahamic Promises to final fruition. We would also expect the prophets, if their writings and the Bible are inspired, to follow the same order, too. In other words, the Lord's Work Program would begin on the land first to take away the desolate condition and then follow this with the return of the people, letting them help rehabilitate the land. If you will turn to the thirty-sixth and thirty-seventh chapters of the Prophet Ezekiel, written about 2500 years ago, you will find this reversed order in connection with world affairs in the time of the end of this Church Age. In chapter thirty-six God gives a discussion in connection with the restoration of the fertility and productivity of the land of Israel. In chapter thirty-seven He follows with the truth of the restoration of His dispersed chosen people to the land in this end time. This is immediately followed by chapters thirty-eight and thirty-nine concerning the destruction of trouble-making (verse 13) Russia and her satellite allies in the end time. This reversed order is the one in which God has been working and therefore we must be in some phase of this end time.

In 1860, one hundred years ago, God began to increase the rainfall of the Holy Land. A similar increase is promised and Ezekiel 34:26. See Joel 2:23. The former rains fall in autumn; the latter rains in the spring. The rains now, 1960, are about twice as much as one hundred years ago and some of the finest oranges in the world are now being grown in the little Israeli nation. God in His work on the Abrahamic Promises has used His returning people to drain swamps, to fertilize barren lands, to water dry places and to cause the desert to blossom in fruit-producing gardens. The divine order has been the land first—the second promise—and the nation second—the first promise—so as to have the land in shape to receive the great modern Israeli Exodus of our day. Surely this order of work, as well as the work itself, is a sign of the return of Abraham's greatest son. Let us consider next, God's modern work on the first promise to Abraham to make him a great nation.

In this discussion we are indebted to the splendid book of Mr. William L. Hull, entitled, “The Fall and Rise of Israel”,* for some ideas and information which we offer within from an Abrahamic angle. After God began the rejuvenation and rehabilitation of the land which had lain more or less desolate for centuries, He must of necessity turn His attention to His chosen people, dispersed among the nations of the earth, in order to begin again the verification of making Abraham a nation. There was no Israeli or Jewish nation at the end of the nineteenth century but God was at work on this phase of His Abrahamic Program. Jews satisfied with their surroundings, possessions and state, would have to be stirred up or bitterly persecuted before they would want to return to the land of Jacob's descendants. Then the first phase of God's work to get such return would be for him to create in the hearts of many Jews an urge and feeling that the time had come for a Jewish return to the Holy Land. Shortly before the outbreak of Russian Anti-Semitic pogroms in 1881, God began to do just this. From this urge and feeling sprang the lovers of Zion movement in Russia out of which came the agricultural colonization movement of 1882. The Lord continued this urge and feeling in the decade 1890-1900 from which came the Zionist movement whose first Congress met in Basle, Switzerland, Sunday, August 29, 1897, with 196 delegates from almost all lands where Jews lived, with the object of establishing in the Holy Land a Jewish national home. In order for God to carry this work of a Jewish return to a more complete fruition, two other phases would need to be carried out. After the stirring up of Jewry the land of Palestine must be wrested from the Turks who had held it for 400 years. Then the second phase would be for the land to come under the control of some nations in favor of a Jewish return and settlement of it. The third phase would be for the land finally to be controlled by the Jews themselves with the setting up of a new nation and with an exodus of them from all over the world.

* Ideas of truth and information have been taken here and there from Mr. William L. Hull’s book, “The Fall and Rise of Israel” between pages 102-350, and restated in our own ways. The Abrahamic angles are our own. Mr. Hull’s book is published by Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan. This part from Pages 102, 110, 111, and 1:20, used by permission.

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