The Bible teaches that the Jews are witnesses to the existence of God. When He asked Abram to leave the city of Ur, He promised that Abram’s descendants would become a great nation.
A nation is born
That great nation was born when God called the children of Israel out of Egypt and led them into the Promised Land. Moses told the children of Israel that God had chosen them because he loved them. If they were prepared to obey his commandments, they they would be blessed, but if not they would be cursed.
The Old Testament records how throughout their history as a kingdom Israel did not follow God, but instead served pagan idols. In the end God allowed the Assyrians and the Babylonians to take the nation captive as a punishment.
This was not the end of God’s relationship with the Jews. He promised, through the words of Isaiah and Jeremiah, that the Jews were His witnesses and that he would never forsake them. God brought them back to the land of Israel under the guidance of Ezra and Nehemiah.
After the death of Jesus, God allowed the nation to be taken into captivity again. This time it was the Romans who defeated Israel. For nearly two thousand years it appeared that God had forsaken Israel, the Jews were victimised and persecuted wherever they lived. Yet they remained as a distinct people and God brought them back to the land in 1948. So there is no doubt that Israel exists as a nation. They don't recognise Jesus as their Messiah yet, but they are still witnesses to God’s existence.
Signs of the times
The return of the Jews to the land of Israel isn’t just a modern-day witness to God’s existence. It is also one of many signs that show that the return of Jesus to the earth to set up God’s kingdom is imminent.
When Jesus was speaking to his disciples on the Mount of Olives, just outside Jerusalem, he prophesied that the Jerusalem would be destroyed again and spoke of the time when the Jews would regain control of Jerusalem. He explained that at that time the world would be full of trouble and war. His words describe our world today: “on the earth distress of nations, with perplexity, the sea and the waves roaring; men’s hearts failing them from fear and the expectation of those things which are coming on the earth”.
Yet Jesus goes on to say that, at this time of trouble, we should be prepared because his return is imminent: “then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near”.
Looking at the world around us it is clear that Jesus will return to establish the Kingdom of God very soon.