Anyone, who surveys the spectrum of today’s broad Messianic movement, should be able to acknowledge that something very unique and special is going on, and that God is truly moving! Four to five decades ago in the late 1960s, the contemporary Messianic Jewish movement formally began, some thinking that its arrival on the scene was connected to the retaking of the Old City of Jerusalem by Israel in 1967. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, many Messianic Jewish congregations and fellowships began being planted in North America and across the world, as places where Jewish Believers could believe in Yeshua (Jesus) as the Messiah, and still maintain a high level of being Jewish—keeping the seventh-day Sabbath/Shabbat, the appointed times, kosher, and having a generally traditional Synagogue experience, hopefully still feeling connected to other Jews.
For almost two millennia, multiplied millions of Believers in Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ) have eagerly anticipated His return. Many theories, doctrines, and creeds have been produced concerning the Second Coming, as well as an entire score of books. In today’s world, many Christians think that the Messiah can return at any moment in an event called the “pre-tribulation rapture.” Even among those who do not believe in this imminent rapture, are those who still think that the final days of humanity are upon us. Are they? Is absolutely everything in place for the Messiah to return quite soon? Or, are there some things that might be overlooked, regarding the Messiah’s return?
Before Yeshua was taken up into Heaven, the Apostles asked Him, “Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the Kingdom to Israel?” (Acts 1:6). The Apostles were eagerly awaiting the Messiah to restore Israel, but much work still had to be accomplished, as Yeshua commissioned them to go out into the greater world, and make disciples among all nations. In our era, much more has notably happened, most especially with the salvation of many Jewish people coming to Yeshua, but also with many non-Jewish Believers entering into the Messianic movement, embracing God’s Torah and their Hebraic Roots in a very tangible way. Something unique has undeniably started.
A major challenge is that far too many non-Jewish Believers in Yeshua do not understand who the Lord is actually returning for. They will often consider themselves part of a separate “Church,” with really no connection to Israel. Because of this, it is concluded that the Messiah can imminently come for “the Church,” to leave Israel behind to face the Tribulation period and the antichrist. Is this a valid teaching? Are Israel and “the Church” separate entities? If they are not, how would this change our perception of various aspects of the end-times?
When Will the Messiah Return? is a unique book addressing the end-times from a Messianic perspective. The Messiah stated plainly that He would gather the saints “immediately after the tribulation of those days” (Matthew 24:29). Discussed are common false understandings as they relate to “the Church” being taken to Heaven for the duration of the Tribulation period, and instead how all Believers in Messiah Yeshua get to participate in restoration of Israel’s Kingdom via His return. Some overlooked elements regarding what has been prophesied in Scripture, may hold some of the insight for today’s Believers evaluating why the Messiah has yet to return to Planet Earth.
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