Jerusalem: World History’s Ground Zero

Posted on January 4, 2018

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By David Ettinger

A Really Big Deal
On December 6, 2017, President Trump announced that the United States Embassy in Israel will be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. In so doing, he formally recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. This is not just a big deal, but a colossal deal.

jerusalem wallIt is such a colossal deal because Israel, and specifically Jerusalem, has such a special place in the heart of God. Religiously, or spiritually, speaking, Jerusalem is the center of Planet Earth, and it is Ground Zero – the single location in the universe where all of human history is heading.

The Road to Jerusalem
As the world races to a collision with its Creator, all roads are leading to Jerusalem. In the end-times, the nations of the world will be making a beeline there. They will have a political reason for doing so, but the truth is, the nations will be trekking there because God wants them there. We read in Zechariah 14:2 (emphasis added): “I [God] will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it; the city will be captured, the houses ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be taken from the city.”

The first purpose of God in gathering the nations of the world to Jerusalem will be for punishing most (but not all) of Israel for their disobedience to Him over the centuries. It will be His final disciplinary act against His Chosen People.

Jesus echoes this in Luke 21:20 when He says: “When you see Jerusalem being surrounded by armies, you will know that its desolation is near.” This event has both a “near” and “distant” application. It was partially fulfilled in A.D. 70 when the Temple and Jerusalem were destroyed by the Romans. However, it will see its complete fulfillment at the end of the age.

The Lord Returns

mount of olives

The Mount of Olives

Once God’s first purpose for disciplining Israel is accomplished, He will then turn to His second purpose, pouring out His wrath on the nations as part of the earth’s final judgment. Where will this judgment begin? No need to guess; we read in Zechariah 14:3: “Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights on a day of battle. On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem …”

Jesus will not return to New York City, London, Moscow, Tokyo, or any other world capital. His place of return will be, very specifically and undeniably, Jerusalem.

And what will He do to the nations of the world which have gathered against Jerusalem once He returns? Zechariah 12:3 tells us (emphasis added): “I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves.”

Regarding the return of the Lord Jesus to planet Earth, specifically to Jerusalem, He Himself tells us in Luke 21:25-27: “There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. People will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.”

psalm 122This terrifying return of Jesus will impact the entire world, and it will all begin in Jerusalem.

Ground Zero
Jerusalem is indeed world history’s Ground Zero because it is the very specific location to which Jesus will return. From there – Jerusalem – Jesus will usher in “the Day of the Lord” (read my blog, “A Brief Look at ‘the Day of the Lord’”) – the time of final judgment upon Planet Earth.

All believers who long for the return of the Lord Jesus should be concerned with, and pay attention to, what is happening in the Middle East and Israel. Israel is the apple of God’s eye (Zechariah 2:8) and He is deeply concerned over its wellbeing. It is no wonder He commands all believers in Psalm 122:6 to “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.”