4. The Jews
Some of the most amazing long-term predictions relate to the Jews. Before we can really appreciate all of these predictions, we need to remind ourselves what the Jews have gone through over the last two thousand years.
Bearing that in mind, we can look at what the Bible says. It is known that the Septuagint translation of the Old Testament into Greek was in existence at least 250 years before the Romans destroyed Jerusalem in AD 70. So there is no possibility that the Old Testament predictions were written down after the events.
We shall now look at several Bible passages predicting these and other aspects of Jewish history over the past two thousand years.
|a) Overthrow of the Jewish nation in AD 70|
In this section we shall look mainly at the prophecies in the books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy. These books were written at the time the Jewish nation was founded. They include a list of consequences for persistent rebellion against God. The rest of the Old Testament is a record of Israel’s continual disobedience to God. If these books come from a power greater than ourselves, we can expect to see the threats become reality.
Some of these threats aptly describe the Romans attacking Jerusalem in AD 70.
Pointing to the temple in Jerusalem, Jesus said:
Jerusalem was finally destroyed in AD 135. This followed the suppression of the last rebellion of the Jews against Rome under the Jewish rebel leader Bar Kochba. The very foundations of the temple were torn up and the land ploughed. Not even a ruin of the temple survives, as Jesus predicted.
Though Egypt was not involved in the Jews’ overthrow in AD 70, it was involved afterwards, as this verse predicts. The historian Diodorus tells us that those who survived the Jerusalem siege were sent to the Egyptian mines and compelled to work day and night. The markets were swamped with Jewish slaves and the words of the quotation were fulfilled, “no one will buy you”.
We can see just how detailed are the predictions relating to this dreadful period in Jewish history.
b) Scattering of the Jews and desolation of their homelandAfter the destruction of their nation, the Jews were scattered throughout the vast Roman Empire.
The *Atlas of Jewish History comments on page 17:
By 300 AD, the Jews had settled in every part of the Roman Empire except Britain.
* The Routledge Atlas of Jewish History by Martin Gilbert.
The desolation of the land of Israel before the Jews started returning can be seen from these pictures taken in 1940. The left picture shows one of the first tractors ploughing the land in the Huleh Swamp. The right picture shows workers in the same swamps with their heads covered with netting as protection against malaria-carrying flies.
c) Hatred and persecution of the JewsThere are many clear predictions that their constant rebellion against God would also result in
terrible persecution for the Jews:
This persecution by Adolf Hitler in the Second World War was typical of the persecution that the Jews have endured down the ages.
Anti-Semitism still continues today. The “Jewish Virtual Library” website has a section called “Anti- Semitic Trends Throughout the World”, which reports incidents round the world each year. It remarks:
The prophet Hosea adds another prediction about the Jews:
The God of the Bible makes the bold statement that we shall know He exists if the Jews continue to
e) Return of the Jews to their old homeland
In 1948, the nation of Israel was re-formed. This was the first time the Jews had a national homeland since AD 135.
Martin Gilbert’s Atlas of Jewish History shows that between 1652 and 1946 at least twenty other places round the world were considered beside Israel as possible Jewish homelands. But the Bible’s predictions were correct despite men having other ideas!
|f) Jerusalem would become an international problem|
These two verses very clearly predict that Jerusalem would become the focus of world problems.
We can see that situation developing now.