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U.S. Embassy moves to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv – Why do Christians care?

Happy 70th birthday to Israel!  The embassy move is considered a birthday present to Israel by many who live there.

70 years ago on May 14, 1948 Israel became a nation again.   This was predicted in scripture and now the nation of Israel is celebrating 70 years since the reestablishment of Israel as a modern nation.Today a plaque and a seal (pictured above) was unveiled at the ceremony formally opening the US embassy in Jerusalem.  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked President Trump for “having the courage to keep your promises.  What a glorious day for Israel.   We are in Jerusalem and we are here to stay.”

Israel considers Jerusalem as its capital while the Palestinians see East Jerusalem as its capital.  Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital has outraged  Palestinians.  Of course the Palestinians are very angry about this move of the US embassy.  This move appears to be creating more controversy and perhaps deferring the US efforts to roll out a proposed Israel-Palestinian peace plan.

Why should Christians care if U. S. Embassy is moving to Jerusalem?

In his book, Israel Matters: Why Christians Must Think Differently about the People and the Land, Gerald R. McDermott challenges the theory by some Christians ‘that since Jesus came to earth, Jews are no longer special to God as a people, and the land of Israel is no longer theologically significant.’

In his book. he indicates that church is not the new Israel, and both the people and the land are important to God and future redemption. He discusses ‘Replacement Theology’ which says that the Church replaced biblical Israel as the apple of God’s eye.  He also discusses ‘Supersessionism, which believes in what is called ‘Fulfillment Theology’. In this theology, the end result is the same.  Jesus ends up fulfilling everything Israel was supposed to do.  Hence, there is no role for Israel anymore.  McDermott traces the history of Supersessionism in church history.  He then discusses the counter theories.

Olive Wood Gifts from Holy Land - TheJerusalemGiftShop

Western (Wailing) Wall
Israel Matters

We traveled to Israel a number of years ago with our church.  The emotions that overcame me while there were indescribable.  Although I knew that many of the sites we visited were ‘the believed to be’ sites of particular events in Jesus days here on earth, it truly was an amazing feeling to walk where you know Jesus once walked.  To see the site they believe was Golgotha and the empty tomb site left me emotionally exhausted and in tears. I never dreamed that I would feel so close to Jesus while we were there, but I did.

We sat in the Garden of Gethsemane for about thirty minutes and prayed and meditated before going to Golgotha and the empty tomb.  Even that time in preparation didn’t prepare me for the emotions I would feel at the tomb site.

I don’t believe any believer, who is in touch with what God did for us when He sent Jesus to earth to die on a Cross to take away our sins, to pay the debt for us, to nail it to the Cross, forever paid in full….can walk in the ‘Land’ and not be emotional. That Land and those people still matter.  Jesus was a Jew and will always be a Jew although He died on the Cross and now sits at the right hand of God the Father in Heaven, He came here as a Jew, and lived, taught and was crucified in Israel!

Israel matters!  Jerusalem matters.  And the US Embassy moving to Jerusalem is important.

Dome of the Rock (The Temple Mount)
Why does it matter to me that the Embassy be in Jerusalem?

In my in depth study of the Word, the entire Bible, I have never been able to determine that Israel and the Jewish people were no longer the Chosen people.   I believe that the entire Bible is the inspired Word of God and that it is all important to us as believers:

  • The city is where the Ark finally resided at the Temple there
  • David picked Mount Moriah as the site for the future temple
  • It is where Abraham almost sacrificed Isaac and talked to God
  • It was where the Jews and Jesus came from all around for the Feast of Passover and other Jewish Feasts
  • It is where the Last Supper was held in the upper room
  • It was where sacrifices were made to God and where the last sacrifices were made prior to the final sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross
  • It is where Jesus often taught as an adult
  • It was where Jesus entered the town riding on a donkey on the day of His Crucifixion
  • It was where Jesus was tried and beaten nearly to death
  • It was where Jesus carried His cross through the old city to the Golgotha (the Stations of the Cross)
  • It was a place where so much occurred in the Bible that it is the perfect place for the Capital of Jerusalem

Hence, it is the perfect place for the US Embassy and for Americans to recognize Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel.

If you are interested in Gerald McDermott’s book you may click here to buy from Amazon.

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