Gentile Nations and Israel
By Ernest L. Martin, Ph.D., August 1994
Transcribed and edited by David Sielaff, March 2008
In the New Testament, one apostle was picked to present the gospel message to the Gentiles of the world, the apostle Paul. So too, a prophet in the Old Testament was specifically selected to do the same thing for Gentiles regarding prophecy. That prophet was Jeremiah. Though Jeremiah’s primary task was to go to the Jewish people in his time, he was also ordained to go to all nations of the world. That means every nation. His prophecies reach out to embrace the end time, just before the advent of the Kingdom of God on earth and the Second Coming of Christ.
This prophet Jeremiah has been called by some historians and biblical scholars the “Axial Prophet.” 1 Jeremiah was an axial individual in the history of the world, a prophet in the midst of history. Jeremiah brought to a close a former age and he introduced a new age, an age that you and I know today, of which Babylon became the head and the foremost exponent in terms of the “Babylonian system.”
Since the time of Jeremiah (and with the writing of the Book of Daniel), a new age commenced with Nebuchadnezzar as its primogenitor. We are still in that Babylonian period which commenced in the time of Jeremiah that Daniel spoke about. That “Axial Prophet,” selected to bring in that new age through the destruction of the former one, was Jeremiah. His commission was given to him by God in the first chapter of the Book of Jeremiah when he was about 17 years of age. His prophetic service lasted just over 40 years.
Jeremiah was a priest (Jeremiah 1:1) who was born and lived in the area of Benjamin in the city of Anathoth about 4 to 5 miles north and east of Jerusalem. After the capture of Jerusalem many Jews went to Babylon, and some went to Egypt. Jeremiah himself at the close of his prophecies was in Babylon, where he died. He handed over his credentials, so to speak, to Daniel the prophet, who carried them on down to the post-Babylonian period and to us today. 2
When you read about this axial prophet Jeremiah, (1) he prophesied not only to the Israelites but to all the Gentiles in the world, but (2) his prophecies were not only for his own time but they stretch out to reach our time today and to the near future. Remember this when you consider the importance of this priest, Jeremiah. Look at the commission given to Jeremiah when he was about 17 years old. We find it in Jeremiah 1:4. The first three verses give an introduction, and then comes the commission that was given to him. Look at his credentials:
“Then the word of the Lord came unto me saying, Before I formed you in the belly I knew you; and before you came forth out of the womb I sanctified you, and I ordained you a prophet unto the nations.”
Or, as some translations would have it, “unto the Gentiles.” This axial prophet speaks about the Gentile nations, but about Israel as well. In fact, most of the prophecies in Jeremiah are about Israel and Judah.
In verse 6 Jeremiah says: “Then said I, Ah, Lord YHWH! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child.” The word “child” there means a young man. That is pretty young. When God picked Jeremiah at age 17 He had a specific commission for him, and Jeremiah fulfilled it perfectly. Let us take courage and know that God will always work with anyone that He selects. He can give power and authority to people of any age whatsoever. God answered Jeremiah’s complaint:
“But YHWH said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for you shall go to all that I shall send you, and whatsoever I command you, you shall speak. Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with you to deliver you, said YHWH. Then YHWH put forth his hand, and touched my mouth. And YHWH said unto me, Behold, I have put my words in your mouth.”
Look at verse 10, here is the commission:
“See, I have this day [the very day that God gave this commission] set you over the nations [over all the nations on earth, including Israel and Judah] and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant.”
Are not kings over nations? That is true, politically. But here is a commission coming to a young priest 17 years old. God says to his face after touching his mouth: “I have set you over the nations, and over the kingdoms ...” What will Jeremiah do? He is going  “to root out,  to pull down,  to destroy, and  to throw down.” Four commissions, all designed to destroy civilizations in existence at the time of Jeremiah. Within a hundred years after Jeremiah a new type of world-wide civilization came to exist on earth.
It is difficult for us today, even for historians, to penetrate back before the time of Jeremiah to find out what was going on in the world of Israel, say in the time of Solomon, or in Egypt, Assyria, Babylon, or in various regions outside of the biblical revelation. It is very difficult. We have some information, but it is difficult to put it together in a chronological fashion that is coherent and understandable.
From the time of Jeremiah onward, however, it is not as difficult. We recognize our world, later the Greco-Roman Western world as it came to be, that you and I can know today. We can trace it back to about the 5th or 6th century BC, the time of Jeremiah, Daniel, Nebuchadnezzar, and the destruction and exile of Judah. Before that time history is very hazy, and it is hard for us to know what was happening prior to the time of Jeremiah apart from Scripture. Something was turning upon Jeremiah as the “axial prophet,” a revolutionary spirit was in the air that developed into a very different world.
Jeremiah was to tear down one type of civilization that the world had been used to, and introduce a new, different civilization from what preceded. 3 Daniel was picked, along with the prophet Jeremiah, to give to us information of what that new world would be like, governed by Babylonian principles, until the Kingdom of God would be set up, and Jesus Christ would come back to earth and establish yet another new civilization. There we have Jeremiah’s basic credentials. He was like the apostle Paul who also was picked to go to the Gentiles. Unlike Paul, Jeremiah was selected to go to Israel also, which meant he was to go to all nations. When you go to Jeremiah chapter 25, you see how extensive Jeremiah’s prophecies were. They embraced the entirety of this world:
“For thus says YHWH God of Israel unto me; Take the wine cup of this fury at my hand, and cause all the nations, to whom I send you, to drink. And they shall drink, and be moved [shaken], and be mad, because of the sword that I will send among them. Then took I the cup at YHWH’s hand, and made all the nations to drink, unto whom YHWH had sent me.”
Do you know where God started with Jeremiah? He said to take this cup, and in it is the wine of fury. That is a symbol that God has judgments coming upon these nations. Who did He send him to first? It says:
“To wit, Jerusalem, and the cities of Judah and the kings thereof, and the princes thereof, to make them a desolation, an astonishment, an hissing, and a curse; as it is this day.”
(The underlined are parenthetical words put in by Ezra when he canonized this Book of Jeremiah.)
Who was the next nation Jeremiah was sent to, for it to take this cup of fury in the hand of the Lord?
“Pharaoh king of Egypt, and his servants, and his princes, and all his people; And all the mingled people [those of different nationalities in Egypt], and all the kings of the land of Uz [southeast and east of Jerusalem], and all the kings of the land of the Philistines, and Ashkelon, and Azzah, and Ekron, and the remnant of Ashdod.”
Those are the regions near Gaza today that are so much in the news, and that want to cohere into a Palestinian state. By the way, they will get their Palestinian state. It is absolutely shown in the Scripture. 4 Jeremiah’s commission reached out to include all of the Philistines who were on the southwest corner of the land of Canaan. But it does not stop there — verse 21:
“Edom, and Moab, and the children of Ammon [east of the River Jordan, they too were to drink of the cup]. And all the kings of Tyrus, and all the kings of Zidon, and the kings of the isles which are beyond the sea [beyond the Mediterranean].” 5
It goes on. Jeremiah is to take this cup, this commission, this command from God, to the people of:
“Dedan, and Tema, and Buz, and all that are in the utmost corners” [people in the area of Arabia] And all the kings of Arabia [the Arabian Peninsula] and all the kings of the mingled people that dwell in the desert. 6 And all the kings of Zimri, and all the kings of Elam [Persia, he is getting farther away] and all the kings of the Medes [north Persia, including Assyria].”
To show how all encompassing Jeremiah’s credentials from God were:
“And all the kings of the north, far and near, one with another, and all the kingdoms of the world, which are upon the face of the earth.”
That includes North America, South America, all of Africa, all of Asia; everyone on earth was to drink from the cup of the wine of the fury of God. They all did so back there in the 6th century BC, and historians are now beginning to understand that to be a fact.
Then it says at the end of verse 26: “... and the king of Sheshach shall drink after them.” The last person or king, to drink this cup is Sheshach which is a cipher for Babylon, 7 which will be the last kingdom to be destroyed. After these nations were destroyed in the 6th century BC, a new civilization came on the scene. Who was the head of that civilization? It was Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon, and his successors. That is what the prophecy of Daniel is all about. Babylon was succeeded by Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome and so forth, down to our day. Babylon itself [the Babylonian system] will not be destroyed until, out of the top of a mountain comes a stone that rolls down and strikes the Babylonian image on its feet, and then pummels the image with its gold, silver, brass, iron, and then iron mixed with clay, into a kind of a sand or dust. Then wind blows it away (Daniel 3:31–45) and then the Kingdom of God is established on earth. The last kingdom, or empire, to be destroyed is Sheshach or Babylon.
All the kingdoms Jeremiah was sent to in the 6th century BC were destroyed at that time — all but one. That king and that empire was Babylon. Jeremiah says the last to drink the cup of God’s fury will be Babylon (Jeremiah 25:26). Babylon will not drink until more than 2,500 years later. We are soon coming to that period when this Babylonian system (that the Book of Revelation also talks about) will be destroyed. It has not been destroyed yet. Babylon or Sheshach “shall drink after them.” Jeremiah shows that the effects of Babylon’s destruction will be felt worldwide, because the Babylonian empire, headed by the antichrist, will envelop the entire world. It will be destroyed at that time.
“YHWH shall roar from on high, and utter his voice from his holy habitation; he shall mightily roar upon his habitation; he shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth [All inhabitants of earth will be affected]. A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth; for YHWH has a controversy with the nations [every nation including the United States], he will plead with all flesh; he will give them that are wicked to the sword, says YHWH.
Thus says YHWH of hosts, Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth. And the slain of YHWH shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth: they shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground.”
It goes on with more information of the prophecy of the cup given to Jeremiah.
Another prophecy was given to Jeremiah and you should be aware of it. These prophecies are rather exhaustive when you think about them, and very traumatic. It shows the potential that God has to bring judgment upon the nations of this world. He expects us to pay heed to His warnings. Notice what Jeremiah 18:1–10 records:
“If that nation, against whom I have pronounced [prophesied against], turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them.”
This is interesting. God causes people to repent. God causes people to have faith. God gives grace to people. At the same time He says that if people would repent of their evil ways that He is against, He will repent to bring evil upon the nations of the world. That is a promise to you. That is a promise to me. 8
Strange as it may seem, the main chronological prophecies of Jeremiah as the axial prophet are not in the 52 chapters of the Book of Jeremiah. There are many prophecies there, most about Judah, some about Israel, and several about the nations surrounding Israel in the 6th century BC. Many of those prophecies have an end-time fulfillment. But the main chronological prophecies of Jeremiah that help fulfill his commission and to show his credentials even more, are not found in those 52 chapters.
If not in the Book of Jeremiah, where are they found? 9 Scholars have recognized, when analyzed correctly, that another section of Scripture gives Jeremiah’s prophecies, and these are also from the 6th century BC. These prophecies are found within another book of the Bible written almost 150 years after the time of Jeremiah. That section of Scripture is the concluding six chapters of the Book of Zechariah, chapters 9 to 14. 10 Those chapters are tacked on to the Book of Zechariah. These attached prophecies are found to be at least a hundred years in geographical and environmental context before the time of Zechariah.
They are prophecies by Jeremiah. How do I know that? It is easy to see that these are prophecies within the chronological environment of the 6th century BC, because names mentioned, geographical and political names of nations, etc., have relevance only in the 6th century BC. At the time of Zechariah (who wrote the first eight chapters) these geographical names had been eclipsed and were no longer used. So we know that it goes back to the time of Jeremiah. How do we know for sure who wrote chapters 9 to 14 of Zechariah?
The people of the New Testament understood who wrote the last six chapters of Zechariah. It was the “Axial Prophet,” called to all nations, including Judah and Israel. Read Matthew chapter 27 to get the answer. Matthew shows under inspiration of God that the last six chapters were written by Jeremiah. Read Matthew 27:1–8 telling of the trial of the crucifixion of Jesus. The key is at verse 9. How did they know the significance of these thirty pieces of silver dealing with the selling of Jesus to His crucifixion?
“Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued. whom, they of the children of Israel did value; And gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord appointed me.”
That quote is from Zechariah 11:12, a portion of Scripture (as scholars have long known) from the chronological and historical environment of the 6th century BC. It could not be a writing of Zechariah. Matthew tells us Jeremiah wrote the prophecies. Chapters 9 to 14 are different from the prior eight chapters. Read all of Zechariah. One style ends with chapter 8 and a different style begins in chapter 9.
I will cover chapter 8 later, and what it says concerning the future to us. Then I will go into chapters 9–14, written by Jeremiah to support HIS prophecies which he gave earlier, and the prophecies that show the end of the Babylonian system, and the establishment of God’s Kingdom on earth.
In these prophecies there are hints of a Messiah. I gave one above about the thirty pieces of silver. There is also the prophecy about taking a donkey, and that the Messiah will go down the mountainside to present Himself riding on a donkey (Zechariah 9:9; Matthew 21:1–11; and John 12:12–19).
In chapters 12 and 13 Israel mourns for the one whom they pierced, which, as the apostles showed in the New Testament, is clearly a reference to the crucifixion of Jesus. We find in this section by Jeremiah a tremendous amount of inference and direct teaching about the first advent of Christ here on this earth.
Many of these prophecies (even those dealing with Christ, though they introduce Him some 2,000 years ago) have their complete fulfillment at the end of the age, when the Babylonian system ends. Chapters 9 to 14 of Zechariah conclude with Christ Himself, in the form and authority of Yahweh, coming down from heaven, touching His feet on the Mount of Olives which splits in two and is obliterated, along with the other mountains around Jerusalem. Then comes forth a new mountain that has never been there before. The entire geography around the city of Jerusalem that we know today will be obliterated, and a new geographical environment will emerge at the beginning of the millennium when Jesus Christ returns to earth.
Remember, Zechariah chapter 14 tells us He is coming to the Mount of Olives and not to Jerusalem to the west. He is not touching His feet any place else. 11 The Mount of Olives is where the New Covenant commenced. It is where Jesus was crucified. It is where He was buried, and remained for three days. It is where He was resurrected from the dead, and abundant evidence shows this occurred at the Mount of Olives, which is Calvary, which is Golgotha. When Jesus was on earth and taught in the vicinity of the city of Jerusalem, His home was, as Luke 21:37 and 22:39 tell us, on the Mount of Olives. He taught on the Mount of Olives. He gave His main prophecy on the Mount of Olives. He returned to heaven from the Mount of Olives, and He is returning to the Mount of Olives according to Zechariah chapter 14.
When Jesus comes in the name of Yahweh at His Second Coming and His feet touch the Mount of Olives, it will split in two, destroyed. The city of Jerusalem will be leveled to the ground as well, all the way from Geba in the north, about seven miles, to Rimmon in the south, about 40 miles (Zechariah 14:10). All the geographical features you and I now see around Jerusalem will be changed. It will be a level plain. Then a new, entirely different mountain shall arise at the former site of Jerusalem. When Jesus establishes Himself, Jerusalem will also be re-established, but there will not be a Mount of Olives. 12
These prophecies in Zechariah here, written by Jeremiah, deal with a Temple to be built in Jerusalem. Now that is an important key, because these prophecies have not yet been fulfilled. If they talk in these prophecies about rebuilding a Temple at Jerusalem, whether on the Mount of Olives or elsewhere, it cannot be talking about the time of the millennium, because the millennial Temple will be at Shiloh.
This means that the prophecies we are reading about, dealing with the political and religious environment when this new Temple in the Jerusalem area is built, all refer to the period before the Second Coming of Christ. Remember this, before (not after) the Second Coming of Christ, because no Scriptures show the millennial Temple will be built at Jerusalem. But there are plenty of Scriptures to show that just before the Second Coming of Christ there will be a Temple in the Jerusalem area.
In Second Thessalonians the apostle Paul speaks about a man of sin, a son of perdition, the wicked one, who will seat himself in a Temple calling himself God. That will not be the Temple up in Shiloh built after Christ comes. The man of sin will come to the Temple built before Christ comes. It will be the Temple of the two witnesses in Revelation chapter 11. It will be the Temple talked about in Zechariah chapter 8 (written by Zechariah), and in chapters 9 to 14 (written by Jeremiah).
There is a special key that will unlock our understanding of many of the prophecies of Zechariah, the Book of Revelation, the Book of Isaiah, the Book of Jeremiah itself, and the Psalms. This major key is necessary for us to understand if we will comprehend what the future holds for Jerusalem, for Israel, for the Middle East, for the world, and even for you and me. It is important that we understand this key that so many people today do not comprehend at all.
When Jesus Christ returns to this earth, He comes to the Mount of Olives and that mountain will split in two, become two mountains and then it is destroyed. If you read Zechariah chapter 14 carefully, you find the whole area from the region of Geba north of Jerusalem down to Rimmon in the south of Jerusalem will be leveled like a plain, and then a new mountain will come forth where Jerusalem once was. A new Jerusalem will be built there.
Here is the key. The Temple built in the millennium, after Christ’s return, when the Kingdom of God appears on earth, will not be centered at Jerusalem. It will be at Shiloh. It is quite clear that this is the case.
The concluding prophecies of Zechariah in chapters 7 and 8, and the prophecies of Jeremiah tacked on to those of Zechariah, chapters 9 through 14, reference the fact that God will bring back from all areas of the world His people Israel and Judah, both Ephraim and Judah, the two nations of Israel in the past. He will bring them to the land of Palestine, the land of Canaan, their homeland. He shall establish them there. We have only started to see this occur with the establishment of the nation of Israel in 1948. Of course many Israelites or Jews started to go there right after the First World War, and even before, but now it is one of the most important and powerful nations in the Middle East.
These things are prophesied in Scripture. What we find in Zechariah are prophecies that deal with the House of God, or the Mountain of God, or a new Temple of God that will be built before the Second Coming of Christ in Jerusalem. Not at Shiloh, but in Jerusalem. These prophecies deal with events just on the horizon to us. Some of them may be occurring at this very moment.
Look at Zechariah chapter 7. The prophet Zechariah lived at the time of Haggai and Zerubbabel and Joshua the high priest after the Babylonian captivity, more than 100 years after Jeremiah’s death. It has relevance to something later in chapter 8.
“Then came the word of YHWH of hosts unto me [Zechariah] saying, Speak unto all the people of the land [the land of Judah], and to the priests, saying, When you fasted and mourned in the fifth and seventh month, even those seventy years, did you at all fast unto me, even to me?”
YHWH accused them of being hypocritical in their fasting. Yes they fasted, but in their hearts they were not in tune with God. Two fast days are singled out here, one of the fifth month and the other of the seventh month.
The first fast day (in the fifth month) is the anniversary for the destruction of the Temple of Jerusalem in the time of Nebuchadnezzar. That fast day was ordained by Jeremiah himself. On the eve of that fast, on the 9th day of the month of Ab, which was the fifth month, Jeremiah required all Judah and Israel to read the Book of Lamentations. The 70 years are the years of captivity of the Jews in Babylon. After the 70 years was over, Cyrus the king of Persia allowed them to go back to Jerusalem to rebuild the city. During those 70 years they fasted on the 9th day of the fifth month, the eve of the anniversary of the Temple’s destruction.
The second fast day (in the seventh month) was the fast of Moses. This can be demonstrated without any problem. It is known as Yom Kippur or, we call it today, in English translation, the Day of Atonement (Leviticus 16:29, 23:27, 25:9).
God says regarding the first fast on the anniversary of the destruction of the city of Jerusalem and the Temple, “did you fast to me?” He suggests they fasted but were hypocritical about it. The same with the second fast, the Mosaic fast of Yom Kippur. They fasted but they were still hypocritical about it.
“And when you did eat, and when you did drink, did not you eat for yourselves, and drink for yourselves? Would you not hear the words which the Lord has cried by the former prophets, when Jerusalem was inhabited, and in prosperity, and the cities thereof round about her, when men inhabited the south and the plain?”
They should be rejoicing to know that these things will come. But in their fasting for that type of a city that they wanted restored, he says the fasting was hypocritical. God goes on to say that in spite of everything, through His grace He will restore the Jews and the Israelites to the land of Canaan. Read the entire 8th chapter of Zechariah. It is the last chapter of Zechariah’s own prophecies, because chapter 9 commences Jeremiah’s prophecies tacked on to Zechariah.
Chapter 8 is most interesting because it leaves Israel, and Judah in particular, in a most marvelous condition. Judah will come into great prosperity. It will be when Jerusalem, the city, will be great, and that the mountain of the house of the Lord, which means the Temple, will be in the Jerusalem area. This is before Christ comes back. In the near future we will see Judah, or Israel as a state, come into great prominence and prosperity:
“Again the word of YHWH of hosts came to me, saying, Thus says YHWH of hosts; I was jealous for Zion with great jealousy, and I was jealous for her with great fury [against her enemies].
Thus says YHWH; I am returned unto Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: and Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth; [now look at this] and the mountain of YHWH of hosts [the Temple] the holy mountain.”
It will be in the Jerusalem area. This context shows there will be a Temple in the Jerusalem area at the end of the age. (After the Second Coming of Christ, a Temple will be built in Shiloh, twenty-four miles north.) This is talking about our age at the end of the Babylonian period, the end of the period when Sheshach or Babel will be dealt with and destroyed. Now look what will happen in the Jerusalem area, in the next few years.
“Thus says YHWH of hosts; There shall yet old men and old women dwell in the streets of Jerusalem, and every man with his staff in his hand for very age [older men]. And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in the streets thereof.
Thus says YHWH of hosts; If it be marvelous in the eyes of the remnant of this people in these days, should it also be marvelous in my eyes? says YHWH of hosts.
Thus says YHWH of hosts; Behold, I will save my people from the east country, and from the west country; And I will bring them, and they shall dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God, in truth and in righteousness.”
There is coming a time, as presented in the Jeremian section of Zechariah here, when the people and top authorities in Israel will mourn for the One that was pierced. They will remove the idols out of the land. They will get rid of the false prophets. There will be a return to biblical teaching. The person who will be accepted by them is the individual mentioned in Zechariah chapters 9 to 14,
This person is Yeshua, in the Hebrew language, Joshua or Jesus in our language. We get this in these prophecies by Jeremiah, tacked on to the prophecies of Zechariah.
“Thus says YHWH of hosts; Let your hands be strong, you that hear in these days these words by the mouth of the prophets, which were in the day that the foundation of the house of YHWH of hosts was laid, that the temple might be built.”
Verse 9 shows a glorious period being discussed, and it will happen in the next few years in Israel. If you want to know what date that was, read the entire short Book of Haggai, which immediately precedes Zechariah. That day was the 24th day of the ninth month, which is the month of Kislev, near the month of December in our calendar. That day is most important for a future occurrence that will take place, the foundation of a new Temple. This is not talking about the former Temple brought up in the time of Zechariah and Haggai in the earlier period. This is talking about an end-time Temple. From the very day that that foundation stone is placed, here is what you will get:
“For before these days [before that foundation stone will be placed] there was no hire for man, nor any hire for beast; neither was there any peace to him that went out or came in because of the affliction: for I set all men every one against his neighbor.”
That is the condition we are seeing in Israel now and in the lands around Israel. It seems like every man is against his neighbor.
“But now [Zechariah says, dealing with the end-time] I will not be unto the residue [the remnant] of this people as in the former days, says YHWH of hosts. For  the seed shall be prosperous;  the vine shall give her fruit,  the ground shall give her increase, and  the heavens shall give their dew 13; and  I will cause the remnant of this people to possess all these things.
And it shall come to pass, as you were a curse among the heathen [the nations], O house of Judah, and house of Israel [both houses, Judah and Ephraim are mentioned in the Jeremian section of these Zecharian prophecies]; so will I save you, and you shall be a blessing: fear not, but let your hands be strong. For thus says YHWH of hosts; as I thought to punish you, when your fathers provoked me to wrath, says YHWH of hosts, and I repented not: So again have I thought in these days to do well unto Jerusalem and to the house of Judah: fear you not.”
That command is from God, referring to years in advance of us, before the Second Coming of Christ.
“These are the things that you shall do;  Speak you every man the truth to his neighbor;  execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates: And  let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his neighbor; and  love no false oath; for all these are things that I hate, says YHWH.”
He says if they start doing these things, He will bring peace and joy and happiness, and it will start from the very day they put the foundation stone on this new Temple to be built. Understand this point clearly.
Once they lay that Temple stone, which according to Scripture is the 24th day of the ninth month, at some year in the future, note what will occur next:
“Thus says YHWH of hosts;  The fast of the fourth month, and  the fast of the fifth, and  the fast of the seventh, and  the fast of the tenth, shall be to the house of Judah joy and gladness, and cheerful feasts; therefore love truth and peace.”
Fast days they used to keep will be turned into feast days of joy and happiness. They will rejoice in the Lord.
What are these four days here that are mentioned? The reason I went back to Zechariah chapter 7 to begin with, is that they fasted in the fifth month and the seventh month in the old days during the 70 years of captivity, which they did not do in the proper way. Now he says they will have a reformation; they will start doing things correctly. They will start to see who the Messiah actually is. They will start mourning for Him, and they will change their ways; particularly it will come to Israel.
The fast of the seventh month has nothing to do with the destruction of the city of Jerusalem in its various phases, or the Temple. It has to do with a Mosaic fast called Yom Kippur, the “Day of Atonement.” Do you know what this Scripture is saying — if that be the case — and it is the case!
When they lay that Temple stone in the future, where Zion will be, and the mountain of the house of the Lord will be there, all fasts will be canceled from then on. They will not fast on the fourth month any longer. They will not fast on the fifth month any more. They will not fast on the tenth month, and most importantly, even the 10th of Tishri, the fast of Yom Kippur, the fast of the seventh month will become a feast day.
Some will say “that can’t be possible, because that’s a Mosaic legislation.” That is true and powerful. That is something no Jew would ever give up. I beg your pardon, they will do it. You know why they will do it? Look at the simple logic of the whole matter. The 12th to 14th chapters of Zechariah are showing that there is coming a time when they will start mourning for the one that was pierced. They will get idolatry out of the land. They will get rid of the false prophets.
Who is this one that was pierced? Look at the Jeremian section of prophecy, starting in Zechariah chapter 9; the one pierced is He who came down the hill on the donkey. It is He they had to pay 30 shekels of silver for. This man is none other than Yeshua. When these people begin to understand who Yeshua really is, and that the New Testament revelation about Him is true, the first thing they (and anyone else) will see is that Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world, not only for Jews and Israelites, but for the sins of the world on the Mount of Olives, that He was resurrected from the dead, and that three days later He went back to the Father in heaven. He is at this moment sitting on the right hand of the Father in heaven.
Legally speaking, all the sins of the world have been taken care of. All sins fell on Him. As far as the Father is concerned, the world has no sins, because it says in the cardinal verse that you and I like: “For God so loved the world, that He sent His only begotten Son, that ...” what? Why was He sent? So that people can have their sins forgiven, and the whole world can be saved. That is the whole key. I am paraphrasing, but that is John 3:16–17.
The point is this; Jesus has taken care of their sins. The Yom Kippur ceremonies, when two goats were picked, and a bullock, and others, when the sins of Israel every year were prayed over the goats, and every year they had to fast because it was the sin day, the day of judgment, the day when sins were taken care of. But you know something? When they realize that all their sins, and the sins of the world, were taken care of already by Jesus Christ almost 2,000 years ago, they will realize they do not have to fast for their sins any more.
What about some of you? I have done this myself earlier in my life when I did not know better, because I was not educated in a proper understanding of the truth. I read what the Mosaic legislation said about fasting on the 10th day of the seventh month, on Yom Kippur, and many times I fasted on that day. Here I was, a Christian, believing that Jesus had forgiven all my sins, and I was fasting on this day when my sins have already been done away with completely.
If I fast for my sins on that day, it is a slight against Jesus Christ Himself. It is waving a red flag and saying “you have not forgiven me of my sins, and I still have to fast for them.” Do you see the point? You do not have to fast on that day because that day has been eclipsed by a greater sin offering than two goats, or a bullock. That sin offering was Jesus Christ, the one that was pierced.
When our Israeli and Jewish friends see this clearly and plainly, when they understand what Yeshua did, the one that was pierced, they will look at that fast day, and say “why should we fast any longer? Our sins have all been taken care of.” And that is right. Here is the prophecy written by Zechariah under inspiration from the God of Israel:
“Thus says the Lord of hosts, The fast of the fourth month, and the fast of the fifth, and the fast of the seventh [Yom Kippur on the 10th day of the seventh month], and the fast of the tenth [month]; shall be to the house of Judah joy and gladness, and cheerful feasts; therefore love the truth and peace.”
This will happen in our time. I know it sounds almost impossible, but it will happen in our time. Those fast days will be done away with, and I will tell you the exact day and month when it will take place. I am not sure of the year yet, but I am sure of the day of the month, and the month. It will be in the ninth month, on the 24th day of that month when they lay the foundation stone for this new Temple. Check this in Zechariah chapter 8, then go back to Haggai, and read those two chapters, and you will see it.
We are nearing the end of Zechariah’s prophecies through chapter 8. There are still six more chapters written by Jeremiah, and added on. Those later chapters explain the circumstance in chapter 8 and the glory that will arrive when that new Temple stone is put in place:
“Thus says YHWH of hosts; It shall yet come to pass, that there shall come [to Jerusalem] people, and the inhabitants of many cities.”
“Many cities” will make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, once this new Temple is built.
“And the inhabitants of one city shall go to another, saying, Let us go [to Jerusalem] speedily to pray before YHWH, and to seek YHWH of hosts: I will go also [it says]. Yea, many people and strong nations shall come to seek YHWH of hosts in Jerusalem, and to pray before YHWH. Thus says YHWH of hosts; In those days ...”
This is before the millennium. People are coming before the Lord in Jerusalem. (In the millennium He will be in Shiloh. See the point? This is a key that allows you to understand this.) It is most important.
“… In those days it shall come to pass, that ten men shall take hold out of all [the] languages of the nations, [the ten men] even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you.”
One man, a Jew, will have ten Gentiles get hold of him and saying: “We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you.” So ends Zechariah’s prophecies (which occur before Christ’s Second Coming).
Other things occur after the prophecies by Zechariah, and we find them in chapters 9 to 14, the tack-on chapters. But it is interesting that people will want the skirt of a Jew, because at that time all the nations of the world will say, “God is with you.”
It did not say the skirt of an American or a British person, or a Russian, or anyone else. There is nothing wrong with us, of course, but they will get hold of the skirt of a Jew desperately wanting to learn about God from Jews. Do you know where they will go? They will go to Jerusalem because they shall see something they have never seen before that will occur in a generation ahead of us. Some very interesting things will take place.
Chapter 9 begins the section written by Jeremiah. It starts with a very unique burden, so to speak, or a prophecy. Many people have not known what to do with these first two or three verses. Zechariah 9:1: “The burden of the word of the Lord ...” A burden simply means something you carry on your back. It is like the prophet had a heavy load put upon him, and that heavy load is the word of God. As he speaks forth the word of God, the load gets lighter and lighter. When he has spoken all that God told him, he no longer has any burden. That is the illustration, the symbol.
The burden of the word of the Lord is a heavy load, and it is on this prophet, Jeremiah. Where is this burden of this prophecy located? “... in the land of Hadrach and Damascus ...” Hadrach is next to Damascus and both are in Syria. At the present time Syria is one of the greatest foes of Israel. Israel right now in August, 1994, is making overtures towards them. But Syria is saying “give up the Golan Heights, and then we will talk.” I do not know exactly how things will work in the immediate future, but something will happen in Damascus. What will happen is most interesting because of what it says in this prophecy of chapters 9, 10, and 11, which chapters merge very closely with chapters 12, 13, and 14. Both sections describe events chronologically dealing with the time leading to the Second Advent of Christ to this earth.
“The burden of the word of YHWH in the land of Hadrach, and Damascus shall be the rest [of Him] thereof: when the eyes of man, as of all the tribes of Israel, shall be toward YHWH.”
Damascus will be very important, because it says “Damascus shall be the rest thereof ...” rest as in peace, ease, refreshment, comfort. In Hebrew it says “the rest of him” meaning where “He” will abide and rest. Who is being talked of? It is YHWH of hosts who will rest in Damascus. Even the Jews in their paraphrases of this Scripture have understood, if you look at the Targums, as they are called, it has been suggested that even Damascus will be an abode of the Lord one of these days. Rather interesting, is not it? 14
Some have suggested that it might even be a northern capital of some kind. It will be, in a sense, associated with Israel, some way, somehow. It says when the “rest” will happen:
“... when the eyes of man [all mankind], as all the tribes of Israel, shall be toward YHWH.”
There is coming a time in the not too distant future 15 when mankind will return to an appreciation of the Word of God, and when God begins to manifest His signs on this earth. The attention of the world will be on the God of Israel. The Jews and the people of the world will finally start looking toward Jerusalem. That is what these prophecies are saying, and it will occur before the Second Coming of Christ. There will be an Elijah sent. It is not anybody that I know, because this Elijah is like the Elijah of old, like John the Baptist, a Levitical priest of some kind. 16 He will come from Israel, some way, somehow. He shall turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the children to the fathers, meaning the teaching of the fathers (Malachi 4:5–6). There will be a reformation coming, and it is described if you read chapters 9 to 14 of Zechariah.
There will be problems. In the 11th chapter of Zechariah, Ephraim (of the Joseph tribes of Israel), and Judah (the southern tribes of Israel) will battle with one another, and it appears it will be over this person who comes down the hill on a donkey, who has 30 shekels paid for him, and who was pierced. It even says that war will actually take place after the foundation stone of this Temple is laid.
There will a great prosperity and all of that, but there are other factors that will occur, and you must read all of chapters 9 to 14. These are the chronological chapters of Jeremiah, in a sense, summing up everything. It goes on to say that when Damascus becomes a “resting area” for the God of Israel, it says (Zechariah 9:2): “And Hamath also shall border ...” That means to Hamath. That is near the Euphrates River. It seems to show that the influence of Israel, though there will be nations inside it, shall reach the extent it was in the time of David and Solomon, all the way to Hamath up to the Euphrates. It will include Damascus; and it will include other areas down to the river of Egypt, which means south of the Wadi El Arish, as we call it today. It will be extensive, but it also means that there will be nations in collaboration with Israel, and Israel will come to a very powerful circumstance.
Other nations will join with them. When this occurs, when all eyes of man will finally be on the God of Israel, including the eyes of the Israelites themselves, it says, from verse 3 down to verse 8, the people of Tyre (or Lebanon) and the people down in Gaza (the people of the Philistines will be in existence at that time) will have a great prosperity. But this prosperity, when all nations are looking toward Israel, will then decrease. Read it for yourself. It does not mean prosperity will go completely down, but it that means between now and the start of this prophecy here, Lebanon, and Tyre, and Gaza, and Ashkelon, and the areas that Arafat is now beginning to control in 1994, and the others, will come into prosperity, but they also will have a fall in the future. Who will bring in all of this?
“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, your King comes unto you: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.”
Jesus did that back 2,000 years ago. The individual who will bring this in, and who they will begin to recognize, is this one who came down the hill from the Mount of Olives on a donkey. When Jesus comes the second time He is not coming on a donkey. That was then. He will come with power from heaven on a white horse (Revelation 19:11–16) in a way which will be majestic indeed. A hint is given here to show who the king is that the people will begin to accept at this time of the end. Carrying on, it says in chapter 10 that we will see various things take place which will be glorious indeed:
“They of Ephraim shall be like a mighty man, and their heart shall rejoice as through wine: yea, their children shall see it, and be glad; their heart shall rejoice in YHWH.”
I firmly believe that the Jewish nation at present is in two primary divisions, though there are many subdivisions. One division is the Sephardic Jews, who are normally associated with the Middle Eastern Jews and in some cases European as well, and the other division is the Ashkenazim Jews and some Sephardic Jews. But Middle Eastern Jews connected with Arabic countries are quite different in many ways than the certain European Sephardic Jews and the Ashkenazim Jews, as they are called, coming from central Europe — Germany, Poland, and Russia, and places like that.
I am almost convinced that the tribe of Israel is broken into these two sections, the Ephraim group from the north, and Judah group from the Middle East, and that Jews in Israel at present are one of these two main divisions. Ephraim shall be like a mighty man at that time:
“I will hiss for them, and gather them; for I have redeemed them, and they shall increase as they have increased [again, as they have in the past].
And I will sow them among the people [of other countries in Canaan]: and they shall remember me in far countries; and they shall live with their children, and turn again [to the God and the land of Israel].
I will bring them again [note this] out of the land of Egypt, and gather them out of Assyria; and I will bring them into the land of Gilead and Lebanon; and place shall not be found for them.”
Is it not interesting? Gilead is mentioned, meaning on the other side, east of the Jordan River in what is now the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Ephraimites will settle there. They will be, in a sense, invited into the area. They also will be in Damascus. They also will be up in Hamath on the River Euphrates. These things shall all occur before the Second Coming of Christ. Does that mean that utopia has arrived? Read Zechariah chapter 11. It shows a great war will take place between the Jews themselves, between Judah and Ephraim, which also is described in the 13th chapter of Zechariah.
We have some very interesting times ahead of us, but most people have misunderstood. The Gentiles and Israel are most important. We must keep our attention on the Middle East, upon Israel, and on Jerusalem in particular. If we do so we shall begin to understand what these prophecies are all about.Even Iran will help in the building of this Temple. Read the last part of Isaiah chapter 44, and all of chapter 45. You will find a new way of looking at things coming up in the Middle East.
Ernest L Martin, 1994
Edited by David Sielaff, March 2008
1 Jeremiah’s commission and prophecies to Gentiles are shown in Dr. Martin’s article, “The Prophetic Birth of Our Civilization” originally written in 1975 at http://askelm.com/prophecy/p020701.htm. DWS
2 The works of Scripture, up to that time, included the prophecies of Jeremiah and Daniel were brought from Babylon back to Jerusalem by Ezra the priest. DWS
3 The great empire of Solomon, which the Bible says was the most glorious that the world has ever seen, occurred about 400 years before the time of Jeremiah. Yet so little is known of world history about the time of Solomon that Josephus, the Jewish historian, in the 1st century AD, trying to show the antiquity of the Jewish race, could find in Gentile literature only two references to Solomon. They were references from Phoenicia. They showed that Solomon was able to tell riddles, and he would best the kings of the world, but that the King of Tyre was able to best him on occasion [Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews Book 8:55–62, 143–149]. That is it. This majestic kingdom and empire of Solomon, which all people in the world looked up to and admired for 40 long years, by the time of Josephus in the 1st century AD only two secular references could be found apart the Bible. ELM
5 The Tyrians and the Zidonians [from Sidon] were Phoenicians. There were many Edomites connected with them, and many Israelites. They established cities along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, most notably the city of Carthage. They had colonies in Cadiz, Spain and various other places. They even went beyond the Pillars of Hercules, which today we call the straits of Gibraltar, and established colonies in various places. It is even surmised, that they even had colonies in the New World. ELM
6 That means the Bedouins; they were to get the wine cup of God's fury as well. Of all people on earth, the Bedouins have always said that they are the freest people on earth because no one has conquered them. They were conquered in the time of Babylon, believe me they were. They have not been conquered since that time. ELM
7 This cipher is discussed in Dr. Martin’s article “The Prophetic Birth of Our Civilization” cited in note 1 above. DWS
8 Because we love Holy Scripture very much, we are special persons as far as God is concerned. Certainly you are no different than anyone else in the world and God loves you no more than anyone else. But we know we are His children. We know who we are. God has graced us with enough knowledge and understanding, especially from the New Testament, that you are in a special category as far as God is concerned. Have you learned what God’s power is all about? Can you be a spokesman for Him, and an example for Him? Why should you go through these problems? That is what we find in Scripture (Jeremiah 18:1–10). ELM
9 Jeremiah composed the Book of Lamentations, having to do with the destruction of the city of Jerusalem, the Temple, and the nation of Judah. It is a prophecy of future destruction, but not where the chronological prophecies are found. There are other prophecies of Jeremiah that you may not recognize. Psalm 89 and Psalm 119 are prophecies written by Jeremiah. ELM
10 Those chapters, though they are attached to the Book of Zechariah, were not written by him. Zechariah’s own prophecies, uttered more than 100 years after Jeremiah’s death, are found in Zechariah chapters 1 through 8. ELM
11 The saints will be assembled from around the world (Luke 17:22–37) and taken to the area of Mount Nebo. However, Christ’s feet will not touch the ground. From there, Christ, His angels, and the newly resurrected saints will proceed to the Mount of Olives. See “New Prophetic Discoveries Concerning the End Time” at http://www.askelm.com/prophecy/p050301.htm. and my March 1, 2005 Commentary “New Prophetic Discoveries” at http://www.askelm.com/news/n050301.htm. DWS
12 A new mountain will be there, but the Temple of the millennium will not be built at Jerusalem. It will be at Shiloh where the Tabernacle was in the time of Joshua, about 24 miles north, as we find in Ezekiel chapters 40 to 42 and chapters 44 to 48 where a description of this Temple is given. Ezekiel chapter 43 is parenthetical, a separate vision within the longer visions of chapters 40–48. In chapter 43 YHWH shows Ezekiel what happened in the past. Note 43:3 (Ezekiel did not destroy Jerusalem, YHWH did):
“And it was according to the appearance of the vision which I saw, even according to the vision that I saw when I [He, in Hebrew meaning YHWH] came to destroy the city: and the visions were like the vision that I saw by the river Chebar; and I fell upon my face.”
A prophecy in the Old Testament given by Jacob says that out of Judah lawgivers shall continue to come forth until he returns, it says, to Shiloh, as it is in the original Hebrew (Genesis 49:10). It means that the millennial Temple will be Shiloh. See Dr. Martin’s presentation “Types of Messiah in the Old Testament” at http://www.askelm.com/prophecy/p060601.htm where Shiloh is shown to be a “place” not a “person.” DWS
13 This seems to mean that precipitation and rains will increase in Judah and the Middle East, to be as it was in the New Testament times. See Dr. Martin’s presentation “Biblical Meteorology” at http://www.askelm.com/prophecy/p050701.htm. DWS
14 See Dr. Martin’s 1999 article “The Damascus Phase of End-Time Prophecy” at http://askelm.com/temple/t991101.htm where he expands on this information and also “The Expansion and Portability of Zion” at http://askelm.com/temple/t000801.htm. DWS
15 Dr. Martin thought in 1994 that it would occur soon after the year 2000, but he changed his mind on this subject. It is now March 2008 and events do not seem to be moving any closer to the prophetic fulfillment. However, preparations are long and fulfillment is quick. DWS
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