Welcome back study friends! There is so much to glean from the changing seasons in Israel, and we’re in the midst of a mini-series in which we are soaking in the knowledge and wisdom God grants us in that realm. We began by looking at God’s Ordained Timepiece and transitioned to Entering a New Season yesterday. Today, we’ll consider the new season Israel approaches.
Seasons have come and gone throughout Israel’s history. Some were joyous and celebratory while others were fraught with punishment and devastation, due in large part to Israel’s rebellion. Regardless, after a treatise on the woes brought upon the land, God spoke through His prophet Isaiah (chapter 28), promising that devastation does not last forever! What a gracious God!
Suffering comes and goes as seasons roll along, and suffering is never permanent. When things seem unbearable, God is still on the throne, and still considers those who seek Him. For two thousand years, since the Messiah came and was rejected by the Jewish people, God’s face has been hidden from them. God warned Moses of that in Deuteronomy 31:16-18, and Jesus foretold the same to His disciples in Luke 21:20, 23-24:
20 “But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation is near. …For there will be great distress in the land and wrath upon this people. 24 And they will fall by the edge of the sword, and be led away captive into all nations. And Jerusalem will be trampled by Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.”
A new season is signaled by the word “until.” A day will come when the times of the Gentiles will be fulfilled…when the last Gentile to accept Christ does so. At that moment, a change of season will occur. Isaiah 54:7-10 describes the change in season, indicating that, in great compassion, God will gather His people, and His steadfast love will never depart from them again! By right, He could punish them for their disobedience and rebellion, but He promised to sustain them as long as the sun, moon, and stars are in their fixed order.
A season is about to change, just as it did in 1948 when God rebirthed the nation of Israel. Yet the time of the Gentiles was not fulfilled in 1948. That time is coming soon and will mark a major change of seasons, and it brings great hope for the future.
Tomorrow, we will close out this series looking at that future hope. Check back then as we finish with a bang.