These prophets added to God’s curse on unfaithful Israel. Much of the Old Testament records the nation’s various responses. Patiently God sent prophets to warn them time and again.
“But they mocked the messengers of God, despised His words,
and scoffed at His prophets, until the wrath of the Lord arose against His people,
till there was no remedy.” 2 Chronicles 36:16
“Hear this word that the LORD has spoken against you, O children of Israel,
against the whole family which I brought up from the land of Egypt, saying:
“You only have I known of all the families of the earth;
Therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities.” Amos 3:1, 2
Israel went into captivity in stages, but the nation was re-established in the land around four centuries before Jesus was born. Christ’s crucifixion was in God’s purpose. It did not alter it. Rather it made the salvation of both Jews and Gentiles possible:
“I say then, have they stumbled that they should fall? Certainly not! But through their fall, to provoke them to jealousy, salvation has come to the Gentiles.”
Romans 11:11, 12
Finally the Romans destroyed the nation. As their prophet Hosea had warned centuries before, they became “wanderers among the nations” (Hosea 9:17)
Other minorities eventually assimilate but Jews never can. Someone always remembers and holds it against them. Yet they always outlived their conquerors. Often prohibited from owning land and denied education, they were chased from nation to nation. Yet they succeeded as entertainers, bankers, scientists, politicians, medicine and the arts, which all involve portable intellectual property.
As anticipated by Bible students, modern Israel is an energetic nation established in part of the land promised to them by God. However, most of the Jews there today are atheists proud of their accomplishments.
They do not recognise God’s Hand in their affairs (see Jeremiah 31:10). Ages before, Jewish prophets predicted that the nation would be reformed in unbelief:
“‘Thus says the Lord God: “I do not do this for your sake, O house of Israel, but for My holy name’s sake, which you have profaned among the nations wherever you went. And I will sanctify My great name, which has been profaned among the nations, which you have profaned in their midst; and the nations shall know that I am the Lord,” says the Lord God, “when I am hallowed in you before their eyes. For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land.'”
Ezekiel 36:20-23 (see also Ezekiel 39:23 – 29).
In a time of international turmoil, Israel will be deserted by all its friends (for more information, read Jeremiah 30). Despite all the Jews have endured, “the time of Jacob’s trouble“ is still future. Jerusalem will prove a “burdensome stone” to everyone involved and eventually “all nations” will surround the city prepared to destroy Israel.
“The word of the Lord against Israel. ……Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.” Zechariah 12:1 -3
Jesus will return from heaven to confront them and deliver Israel.
“I will gather all the nations to Jerusalem to fight against it; the city will be captured, the houses ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but the rest of the people will not be taken from the city. Then the LORD will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights in the day of battle” Zechariah 14:1 -3 (New International Version)