Israel to return to the Lord But in the lands of their dispersion, Israel would be redeemed and return to the Lord. “I will save the house of Joseph, and I will bring them again to place them; for I have mercy upon them: and they shall be as though I had not cast them off: for I am the LORD their God, and will hear them. ... Their heart shall rejoice in the LORD. I will ... gather them; for I have redeemed them: and they shall increase as they have increased [to become a fulness of gentile nations]. And I will sow them among the people: and they shall remember Me in far countries” (Zechariah 10:6–9).
Jesus Israel’s Messiah “Who hath believed our report [that the House of Israel have become Christians]? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed [in redeeming His people]? ... Surely He [Messiah] hath borne our [Israel’s] griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on Him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:1–6).
“After two days will He revive us: in the third day He will raise us up, and we shall live in His sight” (v2). Their resurrection in three days pointed to the Resurrection of Jesus Christ and to His being Israel’s Messiah. All the prophets testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow (1 Peter 1:10–11). Messiah would die to redeem Israel (Luke 1:68) and to save the world (John 3:16).
“But we trusted that it had been He which should have redeemed Israel: and ... today is the third day since these things were done. ... Then He said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: Ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into His glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, He expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning Himself” (Luke 24:21–27). Jesus must have quoted this verse from Hosea!
The Jews reject Jesus “Also, O Judah, He hath set an harvest [of reckoning] for thee, when I [shall] return the captivity of My people” (v11). The captivity of “My people Israel” was turned by Messiah’s atoning death upon the cross, His Resurrection and Ascension, and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, so that they became a redeemed Christian people. The Jews (remnant of Judah) reaped the harvest of their unbelief. “Therefore I say unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you [Jews], and given to a nation [Israel] bringing forth the fruits thereof” (Matthew 21:43). “Behold your house is left unto you desolate” (Matthew 23:38). Jerusalem was destroyed in AD 70.
Jews who were not of Judah Jesus told the unbelieving Jews that they were not His sheep (John 10:26), that Abraham was not their father (John 8:39). When the Jews returned from Babylon in 534 BC many had married foreigners. In the following centuries there was a further substantial influx of non-Israelitish people. “Many people of the land became Jews” (Esther 8:17). Then in 125 BC the Idumeans (Edomites, descendants of Esau) were forcibly incorporated into Jewry by John Hyrcanus. These false Jews, “which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan” (Revelation 2:9, 3:9, see also John 8:44, 1 Thessalonians 2:15–16), were the bitter enemies of Christ.
In AD 740 the Khazar king made Judaism the state religion of his empire; the Khazar empire flourished for five centuries in eastern Europe. It is estimated that 90 per cent of today’s Jews are Ashkenazim— descended from the Khazars, and therefore not Semitic peoples.