This morning the message at my church was titled "Understanding What Is Happening In The Middle East". The scripture was Zechariah 12-14, and it was an awesome message summing up some critical themes for understanding what God's Word says about Israel, the End Times, and the plan of God for the end of this Age and the transition to the Millenial Reign of Christ.
Much of the Western Church has long ignored this topic, but we can no longer afford to do so. If we desire to understand the heart of God toward humanity, we must receive a revelation from the Word about God's plan for the future. God's ultimate goal in the events which unfold on the earth is to fill the earth with voluntary lovers of Jesus. This seems like a very logical goal. But without an understanding of the scriptures, even believers who are passionately in love with Christ now may have a hard time understanding the events that God uses to lead the whole earth back to God when they begin to unfold.
You may ask - Why would this be confusing to a believer if they love Jesus? Hint: His plan involves A LOT of horrific things happening, and many, many people dying. (One-Half of the world population to be exact.) If we do not understand his purposes, we will easily be offended by His means.
If you are interested in learning more about these topics, I encourage you to watch the webcast of tonight's service. You can access it by clicking here. The web stream starts tonight at 6pm, and the message starts sometime between 6:30-7:00. Also, the notes are available by clicking here.
You may also want to check out one of these resources:
Your People Shall By My People (great book about Israel)
I will have more to say about Israel, the End Times, and the Lord's return in future posts, but I just wanted to put up a quick post to point you toward these resources.
Please prayerfully seek the Lord about this - ask the Lord to give you a revelation of His end-time plan through His Word, and then read the Word to see what he has to say. A great place to start is Matthew 24. The books of Revelation, Daniel, Ezekiel, Zechariah (chapters 12-14 are where we focused this morning), and Isaiah are also great places to dig deeper.