When Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote “The Jewish Graveyard at Newport,” he concluded it with these lines:
But ah! What once has been shall be no more!The groaning earth in travail and in pain Brings forth its races, but does not restore,And the dead nations never rise again.
Longfellow penned these words in 1852, at a time when it seemed impossible that the dead nation of Israel could ever rise again. Little did Longfellow realize that among the lifeless Jews scattered around the world there was to be thrown the eternal spark of life. It was the spark of rebirth kindled by the message of Theodor Herzl in 1896 – the message of “The Jewish State.” For more than 1800 years the chosen people of God, the dead nation of Israel, wandered as forsaken corpses in the great wilderness of the Gentile nations. But the same God, who allowed this punishment of a rejecting nation to occur, has now caused a dead nation to be resurrected from its Gentile graveyard. Longfellow was wrong; God has lifted up a scattered corpse into a living nation – the risen nation of Israel. When the Great Tribulation Period begins on this planet, both unbelieving Jew and Gentile will personally feel the wrath of Almighty God.
We closed Prophecy Update 22 with Ezekiel 37:5, where he writes: “Thus saith the Lord God unto these bones; Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live:” This verse gives a preview of what God is going to do in the verses which follow. He is going to transform these dead bones into a living nation of flesh, blood, and finally breath. It is not to be done instantly, but rather in a series of stages, as one would perform in building a human body over a skeleton frame.
Verse 6 of Ezekiel 37 describes this building of a living human body (Israel) over her dead bones: “And I will lay sinews upon you, and will bring up flesh upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and ye shall live; and ye shall know that I am the Lord.” “I will lay sinews upon you” refers to those tissues (such as nerve tissue) immediately touching the bones. “And will bring up flesh upon you” pictures all that exists between sinew and skin. “And cover you with skin” portrays the dermis, epidermis, and general structure we identify as skin. “And put breath in you” is a description of the process by which physical (not spiritual) life continues. After God brings a skeleton together, then covers it with a body, He puts breath in it for physical life among the Gentile nations of the world: “And put breath in you.” This is not the spiritual rebirth of Israel. This was her recognition of being a living physical nation by most of the Gentile nations. Her spiritual rebirth does not occur until “ye shall know that I am the LORD” comes to pass. This is the spiritual rebirth of the nation in that it follows her physical birth in time. It is the last link in a natural chain of nation rebuilding, which is characterized by the chronological sequence of bone, sinew, flesh, breath, physical life, and finally spiritual reconciliation with her God. This chronological sequence, prophesied some 2600 years ago, began in 1896, and is still continuing.
Verse 7 marks the beginning of the
sequence outlined in Verse 6: “So I
prophesied as I was commanded: and as I prophesied, there was a noise,
behold a shaking, and the bones came together, bone to his bone.” “There was a noise.” This was
the noise heard round the world in
1896-97 as Jews rallied behind the thundering message of “The Jewish
which was delivered by Theodor Herzl.
This message from Switzerland was soon echoed around the world,
birth of Zionism sprang forth as the dry bones began to cry out: We want a homeland – a homeland in
Israel. “And behold a shaking.” This
was the shaking of the bones that
brought them to life, and caused them to come together as a people under
British Protectorate of Palestine, which was established by the League
Nations Mandate in 1920. Lord willing,
in Prophecy Update 24 we will continue the building of a nation by the