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Jerusalem in
Bible Prophecy

- William Grotheer

 

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Bible Study Guides
- William H. Grotheer

ADVENTIST LAYMEN'S
FOUNDATION OF CANADA (ALF)

Publisher of the
"Watchman, What of the Night?" (WWN)... More Info
William H. Grotheer, Editor of Research & Publication for the ALF

- 1970s
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SHORT STUDIES - William H. Grotheer -
"Another Comforter", study on the Holy Spirit
1976 a Letter and a Reply: - SDA General Conference warning against WWN.
Further Background Information on Zaire -General Conference pays Government to keep church there.
From a WWN letter to a reader: RE: Lakes of Fire - 2 lakes of fire.
Trademark of the name Seventh-day Adventist [Perez Court Case] - US District Court Case - GC of SDA vs.R. Perez, and others [Franchize of name "SDA" not to be used outside of denominational bounds.]

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Interpretative History of the Doctrine of the Incarnation as Taught by the Seventh-day Adventist Church, An
- William H. Grotheer

End Time Line Re-Surveyed Parts 1 & 2 - Adventist Layman's Foundation

Excerpts - Legal Documents
- EEOC vs PPPA - Adventist Laymen's Foundation

Holy Flesh Movement 1899-1901, The - William H. Grotheer

Hour and the End is Striking at You, The - William H. Grotheer

In the Form of a Slave
- William H. Grotheer

Jerusalem In Bible Prophecy
- William H. Grotheer

Key Doctrinal Comparisons - Statements of Belief 1872-1980
- William H. Grotheer

Pope Paul VI Given Gold Medallion by Adventist Church Leader
- William H. Grotheer

Sacred Trust BETRAYED!, The - William H. Grotheer

Seal of God
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Seventh-day Adventist Evangelical Conferences of 1955-1956
 - William H. Grotheer

SIGN of the END of TIME, The - William H. Grotheer

STEPS to ROME
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Times of the Gentiles Fulfilled, The - A Study in Depth of Luke 21:24
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Remembering
Elder William H. Grotheer

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Song of Solomon - Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary

Ten Commandments - as Compared in the New International Version & the King James Version & the Hebrew Interlinear

OTHER BOOKS, MANUSCRIPTS & ARTICLES:

Additional Various Studies --
"Saving Faith" - Dr. E. J. Waggoner
"What is Man" The Gospel in Creation - "The Gospel in Creation"
"A Convicting Jewish Witness", study on the Godhead - David L. Cooper D.D.

Bible As History - Werner Keller

Canons of the Bible, The - Raymond A. Cutts

Daniel and the Revelation - Uriah Smith

Facts of Faith - Christian Edwardson

Individuality in Religion - Alonzo T. Jones

"Is the Bible Inspired or Expired?" - J. J. Williamson

Letters to the Churches - M. L. Andreasen

Place of the Bible In Education, The - Alonzo T. Jones

Sabbath, The - M. L. Andreasen

Sanctuary Service, The
- M. L. Andreasen

So Much In Common - WCC/SDA

Spiritual Gifts. The Great Controversy, between Christ and His Angels, and Satan and his Angels - Ellen G. White

Under Which Banner? - Jon A. Vannoy

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Jerusalem in
Bible Prophecy

by

William Grotheer

 

 

"Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the nations
until the times of the nations be fulfilled."

Luke 21:24 Greek

 

 

 

p 1 -- In 1944, the Pacific Press published a book entitled Palestine in Prophecy. It was used as a "book of the month" by The Voice of Prophecy. The final paragraph of the book reads:                   The apostle Paul speaks of old Jerusalem as being "in bondage with her children." (Gal. 4:25) Had the Jews been faithful, Jerusalem would have been enlarged and beautified to become the center of the whole earth, beautiful for situation. But throughout the generations [from] the fall of that city in A. D. 70, Jerusalem has been "a burdensome stone" and "a cup of trembling unto all people" (Zechariah 12:2, 3); and it will be so till the end of time. Palestine and Jerusalem do not have a bright future in this present world, and those who are holding the hope of a national restoration for the Jews are following a theological will-o'-the-wisp.

Then in 1947, the Pacific Press published another book The Jews and Palestine. In it were noted the objectives of Zionism:             The father of modern Zionism was Theodor Herzl, an Austro-Hungarian journalist. In 1896 he published a book entitled, The Jewish State. The following year the first Zionist Congress convened in Basel, Switzerland, and presented to the world its program for "a publicly assured and legally secured home for the Jewish people in Palestine." (p. 57)

Near the close of this particular chapter, the conclusion is drawn:              The God of heaven who overthrew the city and nation and who because of their apostasy dispersed the inhabitants to the ends of the earth, forever settles the question of a complete return and restitution in old Canaan by asserting that it "cannot be." (p. 61)

In 1947, the Church took the position that it was absolutely impossible for a Jewish state to ever be re-established in Palestine. One year later, in 1948, the Jewish state became a reality.

In 1948, I became pastor of the First church in Toronto, Ontairio, Canada. The Sabbath following the establishment of the Jewish state, I prepared a sermon to shore up confidence in the church's position. I told the congregation - "Don't get too disturbed. Do not become overly alarmed. There are still more Jews in New York City than can possibly get settled in the small area of Palestine." I had no other answer. What was I to say? In other words, as a result of then current events, it became obvious that we as a Church were fallible in our prophetic interpretations, and that there needed to be some re-thinking. By 1952, the Church returned to a position as had been set forth by James Edson White, and faced up to the

p 2 -- reality of the prophecy Jesus had given in Luke 21:24 "...and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." First, in considering this prophecy of Jesus, one must recognize what Jesus did not say. He did not tie this prophecy to the time of the restoration of the Jewish State. Therefore, in 1948, when Israel again became a nation, this event in and of itself was not a fulfillment of prophecy. Jesus did not talk about a Jewish state, nor Palestine, but a city - "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." Further, Jesus did not associate this prophecy with the restoration of the temple or its services. A few hours prior to His giving this prophecy to the disciples, He told the Jewish leadership as He left the temple for the last time - "Behold, your house is left unto you desolate." (Matt. 23:38) This prophecy was tied solely to the control and government of just one city, and that city was Jerusalem!

In 1952, the Church conducted a world-wide Bible Conference. It was held in the Sligo Seventh-day Adventist Church. Elder Arthur Maxwell, then editor of the Signs of the Times, presented a paper on "The Imminence of Christ's Second Coming," in which he directed the attention of the ministry of the Church to Jesus' prophecy in Luke 21:24. He said:               The recent dramatic restoration of the nation of Israel has focused the attention of mankind once more on Palestine. Many Christians have mistakenly permitted themselves to believe that the return of thousands of unconverted Jews to their native land is in fulfillment of the promises to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, not realizing that, since the death of the Son of God on Calvary, there is no salvation, nor any eternal homeland, except forthose who believe in Him and accept His sacrifice.

However, there is one prophecy concerning Palestine that we should all be watching with special care. Said Jesus, "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." (Luke 21:24). (Our Firm Foundation, II, p. 230)

The ministers of the Church from around the world were directed to this neglected prophecy of Jesus by Maxwell. Then he observed that a principle God applied to the Amorites might well apply in this instance, only on a wider scale. He stated:                   Centuries ago Israel was not permitted to enter Palestine for a certain time because "the iniquity of the Amorites" was "not yet full" (Gen. 15:16); that is, not until the probationary time allotted to the Amorites had run out.

It may well be that the same principle applies today, on a wider scale. If so, then Jerusalem is to remain trodden down by Gentiles till the probationary time of all Gentiles has run out. If this be correct, how much hinges upon the fate of this ancient city and the power that occupies it! (Ibid., pp. 230-231)

p 3 -- As noted above, in taking this position, Maxwell reverted back to the position taken by James Edson White in his book - The Coming King. White wrote:           We also read that "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." (Luke 21:24). Jerusalem has never again come into the possession of the Jews and will not until "the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." This will be when the work of the gospel is finished. (1898 ed., p. 98)

Up until 1947, in our evangelistic publications, we taught that there would never be again a Jewish State. Then in 1948, we were shocked into reality because a Jewish State - Israel - did come into existence short of Jerusalem. Maxwell at the 1952 Bible Conference said that "as by an unseen hand" the Jewish forces were "mysteriously... held back" "from achieving this most cherished goal" of retaking Jerusalem. Then he asked, "What could be the reason?" and answered his own question -"Only that the times of the Gentiles are not yet fulfilled." That was in 1952.

Now we are faced with certain other realities with which we must be concerned. In 1967, in the Six-Day War, Israeli military forces took Jerusalem, thus restoring to Jewish control the city. However, the Capital of the State of Israel remained In Tel Aviv. Then in 1980, the entire Jewish government - The Supreme Court, the Knesset, the office of both the President and Prime Minister - was moved to Jerusalem. The prohpecy of Jesus had met its complete fulfillment. And yet, here we are still in time. Again, it is obvious that this prophetic interpretation has failed us. How are we to relate to this fulfilled prophecy? Ignore it? We dare not - it was a prophecy Jesus gave!

You ask, why two dates? In 1967, Jerusalem was captured but not until 13 years later in 1980 was the government moved to Jerusalem, thus occupying the city and bringing it once more under full control of the State of Israel. Let us consider this question.

Luke, in both his Gospel and the book of Acts, uses twenty times the word translated, "until" (acri). But three different times, he combined with the preposition a relative, making it an idiomatic expression - achri hou (acri 'ou). One of these times was in Luke 21:24. The other two times are in the book of Acts. It is the last use in Acts which helps us to understand best the meaning of this idiomatic expression.

Take your Bible and turn to Acts 27. Paul, as a prisoner,

p 4 -- was on his way to Rome. The ship in the midst of storm was in trouble. All aboard had fasted for fourteen days. Then the record reads - "and while the day was coming on, Paul besought them all to take food." (ver. 33 KJV) The word, "While" is a translation of the words, achri hou. What does it mean - "while the day was coming on"? This morning as I left the library to go home for breakfast, in the east were the first glimmers of light. In a brief period of time, the sun arose above the horizon and all the shades of night disappeared. The day was coming on. To describe that brief but definite span of time, Luke used the idiomatic Greek expression - achri hou. The "times of the Gentiles" ended in a brief period of time marked by an event in the history of Jerusalem both at its beginning in 1967, and its ending in 1980.

You may now ask another question: "Are we not introducing something new in prophetic interpretation which is without precedent?" No! Let me give you an illustration. In 533 A.D., Justinian issued a decree establishing the Bishop of Rome the supreme ruler in the West. However, it was not until 538 A.D., that Belisarius, Justinian's general, with force of arms put into effect the decree. We begin the prophecy of the 1260 years not with 533, but with 538. "The times of the Gentiles" closes not with 1967, but with 1980, although the event in 1967 alerted us to what was about to take place had we had eyes to see and ears to hear.

Into this picture for Adventists, there are some factors that must be introduced and understood. In 1901, Ellen G. White wrote to Dr. P.T. Magan, that now very familiar warning. It read:               We may have to remain here in this world because of insubordination many more years, as did the children of Israel, but for Christ's sake, His people should not add sin to sin by charging God with the consequence of their own wrong course of action. (M -184-1901)

Now what was said in 1901? "We may have to remain here in this world ... many more years". Have we? WE'RE HERE! The very fact that we are here, many years after 1901 attests to the accuracy of the possiblity and should tell us something. The statement also infers that we shouldn't be here! "We may have to remain." It was not God's purpose that we should so remain. Why? Various events that were indicated had already occurred. Let us review some history.

In the Review & Herald (Nov. 22,1892) Ellen G. White had written:

p 5 -- The time of test is just upon us, for the loud cry of the third angel has already begun in the revelation of the righteousness of Christ, the sin pardoning Redeemer. This is the beginning of the light of the angel whose glory shall fill the whole earth.

Why was "The time of test ... just upon us"? In August of 1892, a National Sunday Law had been attached as a rider to an appropriation bill and signed into law by President Harrison. It was a period of pronounced Sunday law agitation. In the closing years of the previous decade, Ellen White had noted a National Sunday Law as a sign for God's people. (Keep in mind "time and place.") Now I ask you a further question. Can you show me a single reference in the Writings - and I have asked many; I cannot find it - that after 1901, Ellen White ever referred to a National Sunday Law as a "sign" for God's people? Three weeks later, she did write about the "false Sabbath" being "enforced by an oppressive law" but does not note it as a "National Sunday Law," but as an event to occur "after the truth has been proclaimed as a witness to all nations." (R&H, Dec. 13, 1892) Something went wrong, which caused the warning that "we may have to remain here...many more years."

However, in the very year that this warning was given 1901 - Ellen White directed attention to another "sign" by which we would know the end was indeed "upon us." She wrote:            In the twenty-first chapter of Luke, Christ foretold what was to come upon Jerusalem, and with it He connected the scenes which were to take place in the history of this world just prior to the coming of the Son of man in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (Letter 2O, 1901; Counsels to Writers, pp. 23-24)

I ask you - in 1901, when Ellen White indicated that "we may have to remain here ... many more years" with what events had she that very year connected the end? A National Sunday Law? No! She connected it with events in Jerusalem and said study Luke 21. Now what is in Luke 21, that one does not find in Mark 13 or Matthew 24? Only one thing - "And Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled." This event would signal "the scenes which were to take place just prior to the coming of the Son of man" the second time. What then does the fulfillment of Luke 21:24 in 1980 tell us, if anything? It shouts loud and clear that we have reached the end of time. We are at the very end of human history as we know it today. We stand at the very border of the eternal kingdom and we need to recognize that fact.

p 6 -- Let us make a quick analysis of Luke 21 and see what is emphasized. You can do further study on your own; but let us observe certain highlights. Carefully compare Luke 21 with Matthew 24 and Mark 13. Luke does not even mention as does Matthew and Mark, the Dark Ages, "those days" of "tribulation." He concentrates on events in the history of Jerusalem. All three reports of this prophetic discourse of Jesus summarize general signs which were to occur. Then Luke literallizes the prophecy of Daniel to which Jesus alluded, writing:                       And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh ... For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled ... And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations (ta ethne): and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles (ethne), until the times of the Gentiles (ethne) be fulfilled. And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations (ethne), with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth; for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when ye see these things begin to come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand. Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled. Heaven and earth shall pass away; but my words shall not pass away. (Luke 21:20-33)

Several points should be noted. Luke passes by with only a mention of the "signs" in the sun, moon and stars. (Compare with Matt. 24:29 and Mark 13:24-25) He focuses Jesus' prophecy "upon the earth" emphasizing "the nations" (ethne) whether translated in the KJV "nations" or "Gentiles." He speaks of their "times" and "distress" with "perplexity." In two instances, Luke has Jesus stressing - "When ye see 'then know ye.'" The first, when the armies surrounded Jerusalem, then they were to know that its destruction was nearing. We can ask - did that generation which saw this sign fulfilled live to see the destruction of the city? Likewise, Jesus said, those who see the end of the times of the nations and the events connected with it, that generation will not pass away till all be fulfilled.
When the times of the nations are fulfilled, they come into distress with perplexity. The word in the Greek translated "perplexity" carries the overtones of economic distress. Of interest is the fact that the Department of Labor of the United States government uses 1967 as the base year to chart the course of the dollar in its inflationary devaluation. The economic instability of the nations has only increased since that day with no way out. In other words we are seeing today a "sign" fulfilled on earth as verily as our spiritual fore-fathers saw the fulfillment of a "sign" in

p 7 -- the heavens.

This date - 1967 - was the beginning of the period when the times of the nations would be completed. The "times of the nations fulfilled", what does it mean? Nations are corporate bodies, corporate entities. There is a difference between the close of probations for corporate entities and for all mankind as individuals. No longer are the nations under the merciful intervention of God, but have been given over to Satan to work his deceptions so as to bring them to the battle of the great day of God Almighty.

This understanding of the meaning and significance of "the times of the nations" being fulfilled opens before us two other doors of insight. One involves a deeper understanding of the sanctuary types of ancient Israel; the other, lessons we can learn from the parallel between the end of the times of the Jewish nation/church and the times to which we have come.

A LESSON FROM THE SANCTUARY -- The 16th chapter of Leviticus outlines the services on the Day of Atonement. All the details we will not discuss. We will only carefully consider the threefold cleansing outlined In ritual for the day. First, lest there should be any misunderstanding as to what I will write, let me make it very clear that in the great antitype which convened in Heaven in 1844, all judgment is made in the presence of the Ancient of days. In the type on earth, we are given a glimpse of the agenda of what is taking place in Heaven. The first item was the cleansing of - making an atonement for - the most holy place. (Lev. 16:15-16a; the KJV uses "holy" with the word, "place", supplied to refer to the Most Holy apartment of the sanctuary.) The second item was the cleansing of the holy place, or what is noted as the "tabernacle." (Lev. 16:16b) The third item was the cleansing of the Altar in the court. (Lev. 16:18) It was not until these three steps were completed that Azazel, the scapegoat, was brought into the picture. The text reads:           And when he [the High Priest] hath made an end of reconciling the holy place [most holy apartment], and the tabernacle of the congregation [first apartment], and the altar, he shall bring the live goat. (verse 20)

Now what was the significance of these three steps and what is God telling us in this type? Let us turn our attention to the daily service and how it relates to this

p 8 -- three-fold agenda.

When an individual sinned, a common priest ministered his offering. Of blood, the priest fingerprinted it on the horns of the Altar of the court, and poured the remainder at the base of the Altar. (Lev. 4:30) When the congregation sinned (a corporate act), the high priest ministered the offering, and the blood was marked on the horns of theAltar of Incense in the first apartment, with the remainder of the blood poured at the base of the Altar in the court. (Lev. 4:16-18) During the year not one drop of blood of any sin offering ever was brought into the Most Holy Place. The closest any blood came to the Most Holy Place was that of the sin offering for corporate sin, when blood was sprinkled "seven times before the Lord, even before the vail." (4:17) Now what is the threefold agenda followed on the Day of Atonement telling us in the light of where the blood of confession was placed?

Whatever was signified by the type, whatever was accomplished when our Great High Priest first came to the Ancient of days in judgment, the next cleansing or "Step Two" had to do with corporate guilt and confession. When the adjudication of corporate guilt was completed, the atonement passed to the individual record of confession, which in the type was placed on the horns of the Altar of the Court. Jesus in His prophecy gave the signal for the hour when the "times of the corporate bodies (nations)" would be fulfilled. Then judgment would pass to the individual cases. If there was ever a prophecy

p 9 -- which pinpointed the hour to which we have come in relationship to the judgment, this prophecy of Jesus does! Could it be that in the achri hou - that brief period of time from 1967 to 1980 - the judgment of the individual dead was completed and now we have passed to the judgment of the living? How desperate is such an hour, and how ought we to be living in the light of this possibility?


PARALLELS -- There are some parallels between the close of the "times of the Jewish nation/church" and the close of "the times of the Gentiles (corporate nations/churches)." The time that was allotted to the Jewish nation - "Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people" (Dan. 9:24) - ended in 34 A.D. However, the book of Acts reveals the varying times for the close of probation for the various segments of Jewry. Let us observe the message of that book, and see what it is telling us.

First, consider Acts 2. On that Day of Pentecost, to whom was the message given? Was it given to Gentiles? Was it a great evangelistic endeavor, as we think of evangelism today? No, that Day of Pentecost did not have such an objective. To whom was the message directed? Verse 5 states - "and there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven." What kind of people were they? "Devout" Jews!

What does the word, "devout" mean? How does Luke use the word? In his Gospel, he refers to Simeon, the man who was waiting for the consolation of Israel, as "devout." (Luke 2:25) In describing the men who buried Stephen, Luke declared them to be "devout men." (Acts 8:2) The message of that Day of Pentecost was directed to "devout men" - good men. However, as the Spirit spoke through Peter, with what did He charge these men? Note carefully -"Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ." They - "devout" Jews - crucified their own Messiah? Yes, that is what Peter accused them of - "You crucified the Lord of glory."

Some of these men - even the majority - were not even in Jerusalem at the time of the crucifixion. They had come for the celebration of the Feast of Pentecost. How then

p 10 -- could they be charged with the crucifixion? Because of corporate involvement! They were a part of corporate Israel, and because of this, they were accountable for the acts done by the leadership of that corporate entity, they responded - "Men and brethren, what shall we do?" What was Peter's answer? "Repent."

What is this telling us? In 31 A.D., probation was still open to devout Jews. They could repent. But let us continue on.

Come now to Acts 3. We find a short time following the events of the Day of Pentecost, that Peter and John go to the temple to witness. Accosted by a man lame from birth, they heal him in the name of Jesus. This restored man holds Peter and John as a large group of people gather to assess what has happened. Peter seizes the opportunity and witnesses concerning Jesus, charging his hearers with betrayal, denial, and murder. (Acts 3:12-15) But he holds out hope; he counsels - "Repent ye therefore." (verse 19) The door of repentance was still open for these worshipers in the temple.

While preaching, the captain of the temple with the leading priests took them into custody for trial the next day. Observe now before whom they were arraigned the next day. Read carefully Acts 4:6:          
And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Aexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem.

Who were these men? Who were Annas and Caiaphas? They were the spiritual leaders of the Jewish Church; they were also the very ones who had delivered Jesus over to the Romans to be crucified. Peter filled with the Holy Spirit charged them with the very act - "ye crucif ied" Jesus Christ. (v. 10) But he never held out to them the opportunity to repent. Why? The spiritual leadership of the Jewish Church had passed the unseen line! They could not repent. This was prior to 34 A.D.

We come now to the year 34 A. D. itself. In Acts 7, Stephen is arraigned before the highest "council" of Israel. (See 6:15) Adjured by the high priest, he makes his defense. Hear carefully his final words -     Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Spirit: as your fathers did, so do ye. Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? And they have slain them which shewed before the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers. (7:51-52)

p 11 -- He didn't call upon them to repent. He charged them with the act which brought corporate guilt upon the Jewish nation/church. They took Stephen out and stoned him, and Israel's probation as a church/nation closed. But what about the individual member's probation?

Now let us ask ourselves a question? From this point on, the book of Acts is primarily the story of whom? Paul. And what did Paul do? Turn to Acts 13. He was on his first missionary tour, and here is the record of his sermon in the synagogue of Antioch in Pisidia. Observe what he told them:         
Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethern, that through this Man is preached unto you forgiveness of sins: and by Him all that believe are justified from all things which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses. (13:38-39)

What did he tell them? Keep in mindthat he was now out among the Jews of the Diaspora. To these individual Jews, he assured them that "forgiveness" was still extended to them if they would believe and accept Him whom their spiritual leaders had crucified. The Jewish church/nation had closed their probation as a corporate body, but now to the individual Jew of the synagogue was given an opportunity to make a judgment concerning the decisions of their hierarchical leadership in regard to Truth.

We find that as we study Paul's ministry in the book of Acts, this is the consistent pattern. When he arrives in a new city, where does he go on the Sabbath? To the synagogue. Whom does he proclaim? Jesus and calls upon them to believe and follow Him whom their church leadership had rejected and crucified. When they did not respond, what did Paul do? He left them. (Acts 13:46; 19:8-9) The book of Acts ends on this very theme. (Acts 28:23-25)

The book of Acts also closes within the shadow of the destruction of Jerusalem. Through all that time from 34 A.D. till 66 A.D., there was opportunity for the laity of the Jewish Church as individuals to repent of the sin that closed the day of probation for their hierarchy. This fact needs to be kept in mind as we consider the parallel between the close of the Jewish church/nation and the ending of the times of the nations of earth and the corporate body which we call the Church today.

The parallel between the fulfillment of the times of the

p 12 -- nations (Gentiles) and our own church history is remarkable and dare not be overlooked. We need to recognize that we cannot divorce ourselves from the fact that the Three Angels' Messages which was committed to the Church in sacred trust involves the nations. The very prelude to these messages reads:          And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, ... (Rev. 14:6)

When the times allotted to the nations is fulfilled, the giving of "the everlasting gospel" to the nations is also affected. The two cannot be divorced. Furthermore, we are told:           In the balances of the sanctuary the Seventh-day Adventist church is to be weighed. She will be judged by the privileges and advantages that she has had. If her spiritual experience does not correspond to the advantages that Christ, at infinite cost, has bestowed on her, if the blessings conferred have not qualified her to do the work entrusted to her, on her will be pronounced the sentence, "Found wanting." By the light bestowed, the opportunities given, will she be judged. (Testimonies for the Church, Vol. 8, p. 247)

As Ellen G. White was writing this intent of God following the 1903 General Conference Session, she noted the only condition where-by the judgment of "found wanting" could be averted. It reads:            
Unless the church, which is now [1903] being leavened with her own backsliding, shall repent and be converted, she will eat the fruit of her own doing, until she shall abhor herself. (Ibid., p. 250)

This is nota call to individual repentance but to corporate repentance. In the light radiating from the agenda of the sanctuary as revealed in the type with the fulfilling of the time of the Gentiles - nations as corporate bodies - we should now understand the weighing of the Church in the same balance, and the decision that was rendered. Follow closely now the parallel as diagramed. (p. 15)

In the lefthand column, we have the significant dates in the history of the State of Israel. Let us review them. In 1948, the State of Israel was re-established. The event itself did not fulfill any prophecy. However, coming events were casting their shadows before. Jerusalem still remained in Jordanian control, trodden down of the Gentiles.

In 1967, in the Six-Day War (June 5-10), Jerusalem was captured, and a government under the control of Israel was set up. It was the beginning of the end. It constituted a warning to the Church of the corporate judgment she faced. In 1980, the entire government of Israel was

p 13 -- transferred from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The prophecy of Jesus had reached complete fulfillment. This was done on July 30 of 1980.

In the righthand column is a review of our own Church history in parallel with the events which fulfilled the prophecy of Jesus. In 1949, Bible Readings for the Home Circle was revised. In the study on "The Sinless Life," the paragraphs defining the human nature Christ took upon Himself were altered. In 1950, Elders Wieland and Short presented a restudy of 1888 to the leadership of the Church and called for a "denominational repentance" - corporate repentance. While these young men did not perceive the connection of the message of 1888 with the General Conference session in 1903 - and still do not understand it - they did answer the call of God in giving to the Church, the only remedy which could avert it being "spewed out" by Christ. (See Rev. 3:16)

In 1952, a Bible Conference in the Sligo Park Church called the ministry's attention to the prophecy of Jesus in Luke 21:24, noting "that we should all be watching [it] with special care." Then came the SDA-Evangelical Conferences of 1955-56, in which we compromised our basic teachings on the incarnation and the atonement. Instead of repentance, we were continuing to betray the sacred trust making it virtually impossible to give the "ever-lasting gospel" message in its purity.

Then came the fateful year - 1967. In the very month that Jerusalem was retaken, a committee appointed by the General Conference rejected Wieland and Short's call for denominational repentance for the third and final time. In July, Dr. Earle Hilgert then of Andrews University took his place as a voted member on the Faith and Order Commission of the World Council of Churches. In October, the Annual Council gave its approval to the Association of Adventist Forums from whose podium at PUC in 1979, Dr. Desmond Ford was to attack the sanctuary doctrine of the Church. Between 1967 and 1980, in 1977, Dr. B. B. Beach would place in the hands of the reigning pope, Paul VI, "a gold-covered symbol of the Seventh-day Adventist Church." (Review & Herald, August 11, 1977, p. 23)

Then came 1980. At the General Conference session in Dallas, Texas, the Church voted a new Statement of Beliefs, and included in them language from the Constitution

p 14 -- of the World Council of Churches, and confirmed the compromises on the atonement and incarnation made at the SDA-Evangelical Conferences of 1955-56. Within three months God permitted Jesus' prophecy to reach its complete fulfillment. Corporate judgment was then completed in the Heavenly Sanctuary.

A FINAL PROPHECY -- There is one final prophecy concerning Jerusalem in Daniel. Turn in your Bibles to Daniel 11:45. This prophecy in Daniel is a literal prophecy and can no more be spiritualized away than can the prophecy Jesus gave concerning Jerusalem. Daniel 11:45 reads:            And he shall plant the tabernacles of his palace between the seas in the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end and none shall help him.

Daniel understood well what "the glorious holy mountain" was, for he had prayed - "0 Lord... let... Thy fury be turned away from Thy city Jerusalem, Thy holy mountain." (9:16) This "he" of the prophecy will "plant" the "tents" of his abode in Jerusalem. This "he" is "the king" of Daniel 11:36, or the Papacy. He will welcome the personified Christ to "the throne of his father, David." But what then? The next verse reads: "And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth forthe children of thy people." (Dan. 12:1) It will be the end - the close of all human probation. Every individual will have made his decision.

p 15 -- A COMPARISON OF SIGNIFICANCE --

JEWISH HISTORY
1948 - The Jewish State of Israel Established
SDA CHURCH HISTORY
1949- Bible Readings altered; major doctrinal change of the Incarnation.
 

1950- Wieland and Short call for corporate
repentance in document - 1888 Re-Examined.

 

1952- Bible Conference called by General
Conference. Ministers alerted to watch for
fulfillment of Luke 21:24.

 

1955-56 - SDA-Evangelical Conferences. Compromises made in doctrinal areas of the atonement and incarnation.

1967- Six-Day War (June 5-10) Jerusalem retaken; placed under Jewish control. 1967 (June 27-28) - Final rejection of the Wieland-Short manuscript calling for a "denominational repentance."
  (July 30 - August 8) - Dr. Earle Hilgert of Andrews University meets as voted member of the WCC Faith and Order Commission in Bristol, England.
  (October) - Annual Council gives Its approval of Association of Adventist Forums.
  1977- Dr. B. B. Beach places symbol of the SDAchurch into the hands of the Pope.
1980- (July 30) - Government of Israel moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. 1980 (April 25) - General Conference in session voted new 27 Statements of Beliefs which altered basic truths committed to the church.

p 16 -- We have been given foreknowledge:           Fallen angels upon earth form conferderations with evil men. In this age antichrist will appear as the true Christ, and then the law of God will be fully made void in the nations of our world. Rebellion against God's holy law will be fully ripe. But the true leader of all this rebellion is Satan clothed as an angel of light. Men will be deceived and will exalt him to the place of God, and deify him. But Omnipotence will interpose, and to the apostate churches that unite in the exaltation of Satan, the sentence will go forth, "Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine; and she shall be utterly burned with fire: for strong is the Lord God who judgeth her." (TM, p. 62)

All that Jesus prophesied about Jerusalem as signs to God's people has taken place. The shadow of coming events was cast in 1948; the first warning came in 1967; the final warning in 1980. We are living between a fulfilled Luke 21:24, and yet to be fulfilled Daniel 11:45. We are at the end! "Heir of the kingdom, why dost thou slumber?...Wake thee, arouse thee." "Lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh." "When ye see these things come to pass, then KNOW that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand ...This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled."

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