God Promises to Bless

KEY VERSE: “Ye my flock, the flock of my pasture, are men, and I am your God, saith the LORD God.” —Ezekiel 34:31

SELECTED SCRIPTURE: Ezekiel 34:17, 20-31

WHEN Jesus first came to earth to die as man’s Redeemer, he appeared in Israel, because this is where the people lived to whom God had made his promise of a coming Messiah. We think that for the same reason the kingdom of the Messiah will begin to function first in Israel, and that this is one of the reasons that the Lord, by his mighty power, is restoring so many of the Jewish people to that ancient Holy Land.

It follows then, that the Jews in Israel will have the first opportunity of becoming subjects of the new kingdom, and, undoubtedly, virtually all of them will gladly accept this opportunity. Right from the start the earthly phase of the kingdom will be Israelitish, because the vast majority of the “princes” (Ps. 113:8; Heb. 11), the Ancient Worthies, will be of the natural seed of Abraham. The name Israel, meaning ‘to reign for God’; or, ‘to have power from God as a prince’, was given to Jacob as a token of divine favor, because he had prevailed with God. All who become the people of God will therefore be Israelites.

The first growth of the earthly phase of the kingdom will be through the alignment with the Ancient Worthies of those who, by lineage, are Israelites. Even these, however, will need to become ‘Israelites indeed’ (John 1:47; Rom. 2:28), through faith in Christ as their Redeemer and king, and obedience to the laws of the kingdom as they will be administered by the “princes in all the earth.” (Ps. 45:16) The kingdom will continue to increase, as all who come into it become ‘Israelites indeed’—the people of God.

The world will observe that the people in Israel, by aligning themselves with the Ancient Worthies and cooperating with the kingdom arrangement, will be receiving wonderfully rich blessings of peace, health, and life. And, as another prophet expressed it in symbol, these will then “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” (Zech. 8:23) And the whole Gentile world, by belief and obedience, will be able to share in the blessings of the kingdom; for it is designed by God for the “blessing of all the families of the earth.”—Gen. 22:18

And, right from the start, the faithful subjects of the kingdom will have the glorious privilege of sharing in the work of dispensing its blessings. (Rev. 21:17) Indeed, those who do not imbibe the spirit of the kingdom and its purpose sufficiently to want to cooperate, will not continue to be part of it. The objective of the kingdom will be to restore mankind to the original Godlikeness with which man was endowed by the Creator. This implies a heart and life motivated by love for others and a desire to do them good.

This work of restitution is implied in the promise that God will make a “New Covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.” (Jer. 31:31-34) This New Covenant will be the “covenant of peace” mentioned in verse 25 of the Selected Scripture. All the enemies of Israel will cease to be, and as all mankind joins with Israel in that covenant, their enemies, too, will disappear and they will rest securely and safely.

The glory of the Lord will then fill the earth, “and I will cause the shower to come down in its season, there shall be showers of blessing … and the earth shall yield her increase, and they shall … know that I am the Lord.”—vss. 26,27

As with most of the kingdom prophecies made to Israel, the fullness of its promises pertains to all men. “Ye, the flock of my pasture, are men, and I am your God.”

Dawn Bible Students Association
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