Wednesday, 7 December 2016

The Fig Tree

I don't think Jesus said the generation that saw the creation of the State of Israel in 1948 is the generation which must see the return of the Lord. I don't think Jesus discussed 1948 at all!

Jesus told them a "parable" about "the fig tree and all the trees" (Luke 21:29).

So firstly, it was a parable - He wasn't making a straight statement in prose. 

Secondly, it wasn't important to the point of the parable what type of tree it was. It wasn't only the "fig tree" specifically that was used to illustrate His point - but all the trees - any tree.

Thirdly, even if it was about the "fig tree" specifically, Jesus didn't interpret it to mean the rebirth of the State of Israel in 1948!

The fig tree wasn't always symbolic of Israel, in the Bible. In one place, it represented a godless Gentile city (Nineveh)!

Jesus told us what He meant by it. He said that in the same way you know it's Spring when trees sprout new shoots, you will know that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand "when ye see all these things come to pass" (verse 31).

What were "these things"? The rebirth of Israel in 1948? No! The things already mentioned (from verse 8-28)! The siege of Jerusalem. The destruction of the city and Temple. The deportation of Jews as slaves all over the world. Persecutions. Troubles. The continued preaching of the Gospel all over the world.

When you see those things happen, then you know the kingdom of God is night at hand. No mention of Israel 1948 there.

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