Israel — What Does the Future Hold?
By Arlen L. Chitwood
Since the contents of this book are highly typical in nature, a rather lengthy “Introduction,” dealing with the subject, follows this brief foreword.
In one respect, it appears strange that the material comprising this introduction is even necessary, for types have to do with one of the clearly revealed main ways in which God, through His Spirit, structured the Old Testament. But, in another respect, in view of that which has happened in Christendom during the course of the past two millennia, it should not appear strange at all.
Viewing Old Testament history as not only true history but seen, as well, from a typical fashion has, over time, progressively come into disrepute. And this can only account, in no small degree, for much of the erroneous thinking currently rampant in Christian circles pertaining to not only the subject matter of this book — that which is taught in Scripture relative to Israel and the nations in the Middle East, both present and future — but numerous other biblical teachings as well.
An existing error concerning Israel and the nations in the Middle East — error of such a nature that any correct teaching on this subject can only be adversely affected — is one that could not have existed had attention been paid to the types. But attention has not been paid to the types, and error in this realm not only exists but is rampant.
The error alluded to has to do with the teaching that God’s promises concerning a restoration of the Jewish people to a restored land are being progressively fulfilled through the Zionistic movement that began during the closing years of the nineteenth century and came into fruition May 14, 1948 when Jewish leaders declared Israeli statehood.
But even without reference to the types, this error shouldn’t exist, though it does. And not only does it exist, but, as previously stated, this error is widely held. In fact, it is so widely held that any correct teaching on the subject is almost non-existent.
In time past (722 BC, 605 BC, 70 AD), because of the Jewish people’s failure to obey the Lord’s commandments, true to His Word, God eventually uprooted His people from their land and drove them out among the nations, to effect repentance by and through Gentile persecution. And God has promised to restore His people only following repentance (cf. Leviticus 26:1ff; Deuteronomy 28:1ff; 2 Chronicles 6:24ff; 7:12-14).
The preceding is dealt with in a number of types (e.g., the complete book of Exodus, Numbers 35, Jonah 1-4), but it is also dealt with in direct statements apart from the types (e.g., references at the end of the preceding paragraph).
In short, if the present restoration of a remnant under a Zionistic movement, along with a reclamation of parts of the land, has to do with God restoring both His people and their land in fulfillment of His Old Testament promises to do so, an impossible problem presents itself — God is seen acting contrary to His Word in order to fulfill His Word.
The Jewish people and their land are being restored prior to a realization of the reason God uprooted and drove them out among the nations. They are being restored prior to the Jewish people’s repentance, and God has clearly stated that He would restore the Jewish people to a restored land ONLY following repentance.
And this is only one of numerous problems, though a main problem, and one that should have immediately raised a red flag concerning that which was being taught.
Again, adherence to the types would have immediately caught and corrected the error. But that is not what has occurred.
The types have been ignored, resulting in erroneous teachings. Or, to state matters another way, the manner in which God structured His Word has been ignored, resulting in erroneous teachings.
Up until about fifty years ago there was an abundance of Bible teachers who understood how God had structured His Word, and they taught Scripture after the manner in which it had been structured. But as these men began to pass off the scene things correspondingly began to change, which is where we are today and what we have to deal with.
But, then again, do we really have to deal with it? Not really! Leave it alone, study and believe the truth, allowing the truth to expose any and all existing error (Isaiah 8:20; cf. Proverbs 7:2).
Simply stay with that which Scripture has to say — understood in the light of the manner in which God has structured His Word — and you will come out ahead every time.