Recently I was confronted with a Messianic Jewish believer teaching a doctrine of destruction and judgment based around Jeremiah 30:7 known as Jacobs’s trouble. He taught that soon the people of Israel are going to be destroyed down to only a handful or remnant. It seems to me that his teaching was based on Scofields dispensational doctrine, which takes portions of the written word but largely ignores the Character and nature of YHVH.
It’s not just an error in Messianic/Christian belief, but also in extreme branches of Orthodox Judaism. In Israel in 2011 while in the wilderness of Zin in the Negev, I came across a group of Orthodox Jews from the USA who were praying “Against” the land of Israel. In their belief system YHVH would not set up a “land” of Israel until Messiah had come. So they felt it was their role to pray for the dismantling of the secular state of Israel. How could all these people not see the miracle of the regathered land of Israel?
How is it possible, that in the light of the miracle of the restoration of Israel happening in our times before our very eyes, that this sort of teaching even exists? The key to unlocking the truth of scripture is not understood by some, because the heart of YHVH is not understood.
YHVH is not bound by our interpretation of his word, but he is bound by his own character and nature and this and this alone must be used in understanding scripture. Otherwise we will form strange man made doctrines. Under this thinking it could be said that the doctrines held by Mormons or Jehovah witness folk are true because they use the word of God to justify a faulty belief system. We know that these extremes are not YHVHs heart, and we mustn’t use the same form of interpretation to form our own faulty doctrines
Ezk36:22-30; makes it clear that YHVH is restoring Israel for his own names sake. He also states I am going to clean you and deliver you from all your sins and idols, Then he says I am going to put my spirit in you and change your hearts. This is the heart of YHVH. it is all HIS work and there is nothing of mans work in there at all. Romans 11 makes it clear that Jews have paid an enormous price so that the Gentiles can partake of salvation, but Paul goes on in Romans 11 to say that it is YHVH that will restore the Jews to their rightful place, I like to call this restoration “Resurrection glory” or as Paul puts it “Life from the dead”
THE SHOAH AS JACOB’S TROUBLE
Anne Frank the famous Jewish Shoah victim, who died in Auschwitz after being hidden in Holland for most of the war. In 1944 wrote: Who has afflicted us? Who has made us Jews different to all other people? Who has allowed us to suffer so terribly up till now? it is G_d that has made us as we are, but it will be G_d, too, who will raise us up again. If we bear all this suffering and if there still be Jews left, when it is all over, the Jews, instead of being doomed will be held up as an example.
Anne Frank perhaps without realizing it, was actually echoing the words of Hosea 6:1-2: Come, let us return to the Lord. He has torn us to pieces but He will heal us; he has injured us but he will bind up our wounds. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will restore us, that we may live in his presence.
Although this scripture is most often quoted as relating to the resurrection of Yeshua, as is common with Hebrew prophecy it has a dual meaning. An examination of the text makes it clear I think. The terms “he has torn US” and “he will heal US” is plural rather than being recorded in the singular. I suggest that this represents the days of Israel since or just before Messiah Yeshua was born.
The short lived independent nation of Israel won by Judas Maccabee or in the Hebrew Y’hudhah Ha Makabi ended with the Roman invasion 150 odd years before Yeshua’s birth. 2000 years (or two days) later the restoration of Israel started with Theodore Hertzls first Zionist congress in 1897, Israel has been miraculously resurrected and now we are in the third day of both Israel and Judah. Gentiles are grafted into Israel therefore we share her joy, and Judah is restored again to the land and soon as one new man in Messiah Jew & Gentile, Israel & Judah will rejoice to see their king.
The Rabbis during and around the second world war saw the sufferings they were experiencing as a sign that “The Age of redemption” was approaching, that is the coming (or for followers of Yeshua the return of Messiah) Rabbi Levin of Warsaw, actually recorded much of the suffering as a record; he described the birth pains of Jacobs trouble as “the pains before the coming of Messiah”
Jacobs trouble is fairly easy to see in the Shoah. Any one who doubts this MUST spend a whole day reflecting at Yad Vashem Shoah memorial.
There is a time of trouble coming for the nations called the great tribulation which will of course affect Israel but this is not the time of Jacob’s trouble. Jeremiah 30:7 actually says He (Jacob) will be saved out of it.
No one can doubt that the restoration of the land of Israel is indeed the result of the birth pains of Jacob’s trouble, and the good news is that Abba says Jacob will be saved out of it. This is YHVH’s heart.
The Jewish population has not yet recovered from the day of Jacobs trouble, in 1939 there were 16,728,000 Jews; today 74 years later, The Jewish population is still only 13,085,000, however Zechariah says as a promise, “I will call for them (as a Shepherd calls his sheep) and gather them in. THEN I will redeem them and they will be as numerous as before” (Zec 10:8)
I spoke to a young British Jewish girl who didn’t want to make Aliyah because she still carried Jacob’s trouble in her heart, she felt as a Jew she was safer outside of Israel rather than all being in one place.
But is G_d rounding up the Jews so he can destroy them?.. NO NO NO!!! He is rounding them up so he can show forth his glory in them and show them tender mercy and great loving kindness and lead them to see Messiah. The Gentiles role in all of this is to show forth the resurrection power and glory of Yeshua to such an extent that our Jewish brothers will become jealous and return. No amount of theological nonsense from the Gentiles or mis-informed Jews is going to touch the hearts of Israel. Martin Luther made the same mistake in his word based message, which became hatred towards the Jews and ultimately led to the Shoah. Only a demonstration of the resurrection glory of Messiah will turn Jewish hearts toward Messiah.
Many teachers understanding of the Character and nature of G_d is not redemptive, rather it is restrictive and religious, the very things that made Yeshua angry. Moses was able to turn YHVH’s heart regarding the sons of Jacob when he was going to destroy them. That’s the redemptive nature of G_d. ” He is Willing that none should perish”. This is the heart of YHVH.
Psalm 102:16 says “For I will rebuild Zion and appear as its glory“. The Hebrew context here (means end or last) indicates that this promise is given for the end generation. Joel refers to the end thus: Joel 3:1 ‘In those days and at that time I will restore the fortunes of JUDAH and Jerusalem.’ There is no mention of being destroyed, the constant theme is restored. Restoration is the heart of YHVH.
Amos 9:15 says
“I will again plant Israel in their own land, never again to be uprooted from the land I have given them says the LORD your G_d”
Abba’s heart is to restore Israel into the glory of her Messiah and we must remember that the G_d of Israel is a supernatural G_d who lives in a supernatural place and does supernatural things.
My personal experience in talking to secular Jews in Israel and in New Zealand is that they are not interested in religious words, but they do respond to the power of the Spirit of YHVH. Many friends in Israel who love and know messiah had their encounters not through words but through the action and workings of Ruach ha Kodesh.
It is now time to see Jacob’s trouble turned into Jacobs redemption, this is the heart of YHVH and we need to say as Ezekiel said when YHVH asks us “Can these bones live?” He said “You know Lord” by saying Lord you know, that was a smart answer from Ezekiel and it would be smart of us too to yield to His heart for Israel’s redemption. As it says in Acts 3:20-21; Messiah will remain in heaven until the restoration of all things, as Bishop Bierman puts it, The restoration of all things is, the Gentiles back to their Jewish roots and the Jews back to their land and their Messiah.
The teaching that says God is rounding up the Jews to destroy all but a remnant is designed by the enemy to stop Jacob returning to the land out of fear. Abbas heart is fear not for I am with you. Jacobs trouble will become Jacobs blessing.
Ian Johnson is a prophetic revelator based in Auckland New Zealand, speaking in conferences and Churches in Australia, New Zealand and the nations. He regularly brings people from the ends of the earth and the Islands of the sea to Israel to experience for themselves the heart of YHVH for the restoration of all things.