How does Israel bear witness to God today?
From our perspective, please consider:
1. Israel is an object lesson that confirms God’s ongoing covenant of grace not only with Israel but also with the world. The God revealed in the Hebrew scriptures keeps His word and promises.
2. Israel’s death, resurrection & return to their ancient homeland is an object lesson. It points us back to the death, resurrection & ascension of Yeshua that preceded it. Like Yeshua before them, Israel has been a nation scorned and rejected. The Jews in diaspora are like the scapegoat that was led alive into the wilderness of nations. Theologically speaking, all of this had to follow their rejection and murder of Yeshua their brother and Messiah just as their resurrection and return followed the resurrection of Yeshua and his return to his home in heaven.
3. Israel is an object lesson that demonstrates how God has historically revealed himself. We know God by what he has actually done in history, and through revelation and his incarnation within the community of Israel.
4. Israel is a testimony to salvation as a free gift of God’s grace. Israel witnesses to the fact that despite our antagonism and rebellion against God, and although God is a God of judgment, His mercy triumphs over judgment as seen in the symbolism of the Ark of the Covenant where the meeting place was the mercy seat which was above the Ark concealing the tablets of the Law which called for judgment.
5. Israel is a negative object lesson revealing that despite God’s love, patience and mercy, Israel, like all of mankind, continues in their sin and rebellion against Him. Although Israel continues to be a sinful nation, she yet remains the servant of God… serving His purpose that the World come to know who He is and what He is like.
6. Israel reveals God as a person whom we actually encounter in history.
7. Israel reflects that there is a sovereign process of judgment going on throughout history and every nation has to give account to God.
8. Israel resurrection and return witnesses to the coming day of the Lord, to a new creation when Messiah will come back to the earth in judgment, mercy, and renewal.
9. Over the course of more than 3,000 years of intense and intimate dealings, God carefully, patiently and deliberately imprinted himself upon Israels very essence.
The Jews are saturated in the Torah… the self-revelation of almighty God. They’ve been taught the Torah and then have instructed their children for millennia in the ways of living that will lead to life. The very word of God has penetrated and been deeply imprinted into Israel’s conscious and subconscious minds… their very DNA.
Even in their current state of unbelief, Israel is a light to the nations, a glaring example of what is released from a nation so saturated and bathed in the ways of God.
10. Israel, by her very presence in the Promised Land, witnesses to the fact that God is doing something great and dramatic in history.