Israel and Signs

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1 Corinthians 1:22 “For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:”
To me, this is prophetically one of the most important verses in the Bible. It brought tremendous light to God’s Word when I understood what Paul was saying under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Think of who Paul is.
Philippians 3:5–6 “Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.”
Do you remember Paul’s salvation experience?
Acts 9:3–4 “And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?”
Acts 9:5–6 “And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks. And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.”
“For the Jews require a sign” (Phil. 3:5-6, Acts 9:3-6)
What about Thomas? Thomas was one of the 12 Apostles. He followed Jesus everyday, yet he did not believe until he did what? John 20:24-29
John 20:24–26 “But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe. And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.”
John 20:27–29 “Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God. Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.”
Do you know who Jesus is talking about when he says blessed are they who believe but have not seen? He is talking about you and me. You and I do not need signs. We believe based upon what is written.
The Jews require a sign, and the Gentiles seek wisdom, wisdom concerning the truth which is found in God’s completed word.
You might miss the biblical truth concerning Jews and signs if you do not take an holistic approach to your personal Bible study.
Let me ask you a question.
Does God know us better than we know ourselves? _____________
Let me give you an example of God knowing us using the Jews and their requirement of signs.
Do you remember when Moses was sent by God to Egypt to deliver Israel? Do you remember all of what God told Moses to do? See if you recognize the signs God sent for Moses to do to convince the Jews. (Exodus 4:1-9)
Exodus 4:2–5And the Lord said unto him, What is that in thine hand? And he said, A rod. And he said, Cast it on the ground. And he cast it on the ground, and it became a serpent; and Moses fled from before it. And the Lord said unto Moses, Put forth thine hand, and take it by the tail. And he put forth his hand, and caught it, and it became a rod in his hand: That they may believe that the Lord God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath appeared unto thee.”
Exodus 4:8 “And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe thee, neither hearken to the voice of the first sign, that they will believe the voice of the latter sign.”
Exodus 4:9 “And it shall come to pass, if they will not believe also these two signs, neither hearken unto thy voice, that thou shalt take of the water of the river, and pour it upon the dry land: and the water which thou takest out of the river shall become blood upon the dry land.”
God knew in order to convince the Jews that Moses was sent by God to deliver them that Moses would have to perform three signs.
By the way, do you know what the number three represents in the Bible? It stands for Divine perfection, the Holy Trinity.
Think about it.
Gideon asked God for confirmation three times.
Jonah was in the belly of the great fish for three days.
Jesus Christ was in the tomb three days.
Darkness was over Egypt for three days.
Darkness at Calvary for three hours.
What about the birth of Jesus? (Isaiah 7:14, Matthew 2:1-2)
Isaiah 7:14 “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, And shall call his name Immanuel.”
Matthew 2:1–2 “Now when Jesus was born in Beth-lehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem, Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.”
The Gentiles from the East knew what had been written concerning the birth of the Messiah, but the Jews did not know, and the Jews even missed the sign.
Think of all the miracles Christ performed while on earth. Most of those miracles were performed in front of whom? The Pharisees and unbelieving Jews.
The Jews, or at least most of them, missed the signs Christ performed which revealed who He was, and it led Jesus to say this as He rode into Jerusalem. Luke 19:43-44
Luke 19:43–44For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation.
The Jews missed Christ while He was among them to be found.
By the way, can I take a thirty second timeout to dispel some stupidity? It is always good to dispel stupidity.
When Hamas attacked Israel on October 7, 2023, many people used Luke 19:43 in relation to that event to say that the attack was a sign of Christ’s return. That is a big el negativo, senor y senores!
Jesus, in Luke 19:43, is talking about a future event in Israel, but He was not talking about distant future. He was talking about near future as in 70 AD.
Jesus was referring to the Roman General, Titus, who in 70 AD completely destroyed Jerusalem, including the temple resulting in the deaths of 1 1/2 million Jews.
But here is something interesting.
Christians remembered what Jesus said as the Gospel of Luke began to be circulated in 62 AD. As a result, as the Romans were surrounding the city, every Christian escaped and not a single Christian died. They knew because of what had been written. Even the Jewish Christians knew because they had God’s Word and recognized the sign.
In the words of Mel Allen, “How about that?”
The Jews missed the time of Jesus’s visitation and paid a terrible price for it. Christians did not miss the time of Jesus’s visitation and escaped immediate judgment. What a great picture of what will happen with the Rapture of the Church prior to the Tribulation period.
We know that Israel missed Christ, but we know God is not through with Israel. What signs will God use to draw a remnant of Israel to Christ?

1. The Trumpet/Shofar.

1 Thessalonians 4:15–16For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:”
We know this is one of the Rapture passages, but I am going to talk about these two verses in regard to Israel, but I want to point out something here that gets often overlooked.
If you look at verse 15, you will see something very interesting. Just as God gave Moses signs to perform, He gave Paul the details of the Rapture directly. “For this we says by the word of the Lord.”
Paul received what he wrote to the Thessalonians straight from the Lord, and I believe Paul said exactly what God told him to say just as Moses did exactly as God told him.
Notice carefully what Paul says.
For this we.” Who is the we? I believe, keeping the number three in mind, Paul is referring to the Lord, the Lord’s Word, and the Holy Spirit. Paul was not writing what he wrote in his authority. He was writing in the Lord’s authority.
Also, if you notice the passage in 1 Thessalonians 4:15-16, you will see Paul lists three specific things:
The Lord will descend from heaven with a shout.
The voice of the archangel is heard.
The trump of God is blasted.
Three symbolizes Divine perfection. What is going to be perfected at that very moment described in that passage? Redemption, Restoration, and Retribution.
Redemption for those saved during the Church Age who will be perfected for eternity.
Restoration for Israel as God turns His attention to His covenant people with a remnant being saved.
Retribution for the world as Gentile governance and sin is brought to an end.
I am not going to talk about redemption and retribution today.
I want to focus on the restoration of Israel, and the sign given at the Rapture for Israel is the sounding of the trump of God, the shofar.
The blasting of the shofar on the day of the Rapture is specifically a sign for Israel.
It is a sign that the Church Age is completed, and the Day of the Lord has begun.
Romans 11:25–26 “For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion the Deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob:”
I want you to look at that phrase all Israel shall be saved.
I am going to give you a pop quiz.
What does all Israel shall be saved mean? It means all those who have been elected will be saved.
It does not literally mean every Jew will be saved because many Jews will be deceived by the Antichrist.
How will the Jews be deceived? 1 Thess. 2:9, Rev. 13:13-14
2 Thessalonians 2:9 “Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,”
Revelation 13:13–14 “And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.”
Paul calls the actions of the Antichrist as signs and lying wonders done in the power of Satan, and since Jews require a sign, many of them will be deceived by what the Antichrist is doing. Dear friend, do not be deceived by miracles. Is God in the miracle business? Absolutely, but I caution you to read John 20:30-31.
John 20:30–31 “And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.”
Too many people underestimate Satan and his power. He has the power to deceive. He can perform incredible feats right before your very eyes to deceive you.
2 Corinthians 11:14–15 “And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.”
Let’s go back to Egypt for just a minute.
If you read the account of the 10 plagues, you will see that Pharaoh’s magicians under Satan’s power were able to do the same things as Moses could do until Aaron stretched forth his rod to smite the dust of the earth turning it into lice.
Exodus 8:18–19 “And the magicians did so with their enchantments to bring forth lice, but they could not: so there were lice upon man, and upon beast. Then the magicians said unto Pharaoh, This is the finger of God: and Pharaoh’s heart was hardened, and he hearkened not unto them; as the Lord had said.”
Satan is not sovereign. He cannot do unless God allows it. Do not be deceived. Satan is a powerful enemy. His main tool is deception, and that is exactly what he will do during the Tribulation period by signs and lying wonders.
The sounding of the shofar on the day of the Rapture is incredibly significant for Israel. It will not be significant for you and me because our eternal reunion and our perfect redemption will have been started, but for Israel, the sounding of the shofar has great meaning.
In the Old Testament, you will find that the shofar was blown for ten different reasons.
Let me give you some examples:
Amos 3:8 tells us that the sounding of the shofar should instill fear which leads to God.
Zephaniah 1:14-15 tells us that the sounding of the shofar indicates the forthcoming day of great judgment.
Isaiah 27:13 tells us that the sounding of the shofar reminds of the future regathering of Israel.
Isaiah 18:3 tells us of the resurrection of the dead.
The sounding of the trump of God/the shofar should let Israel know that Day of the Lord is at hand ending with the Millennium, but many will be deceived into taking the mark of the beast.
Zechariah 13:8–9 “And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, Two parts therein shall be cut off and die; But the third shall be left therein. And I will bring the third part through the fire, And will refine them as silver is refined, And will try them as gold is tried: They shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: And they shall say, The Lord is my God.”
Only 1/3 of Israel will come through the fires of judgment with only 144,000 being sealed and protected by God during the Tribulation.
Revelation 7:3–4 “Saying, Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. And I heard the number of them which were sealed: and there were sealed an hundred and forty and four thousand of all the tribes of the children of Israel.”
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