The End Times and Israel in the Gospels

The Fascinating, Life-Altering Word of God - Part 8

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What would a biblical stance on the end times look like? Where does Israel fit into our ideas of God’s people? In this episode, Gary Wilkerson and Joshua West explore answers to these questions and how believers should approach apocalyptic portions of scripture. Dispensationalism is a popular American view of the Bible, and it offers a very particular interpretation of Israel’s place among God’s people and how to interpret verses about Christ’s second coming. Some dispensationalist viewpoints are less biblical than others, however, and Gary and Joshua are here to define and explore this particular lens on the Bible.

Key Points from the Podcast

• What is dispensationalism? An overview of it would be that human history is divided into multiple ages, and God deals with his chosen people differently depending on the age that we are in.

• Dispensationalism has influenced the popular views of the rapture happening before the tribulation and viewing our modern day as the ‘Church Age.’

• Covenant theology is the idea that God has both fulfilled and is continuing to fulfill his covenants with his people. Scripture is the unfolding of redemptive history and God revealing himself to his followers.

• What would the people of John’s day have taken from the book of Revelation? Apocalyptic literature should be approached similarly to the poetry in scripture. It reveals what Christ desires and will do in the end times.

• Does the Bible indicate that the pre-tribulation or post-tribulation rapture is more likely? Hermeneutics and context matter greatly in discussions on this question.

• Dispensationalism is a relatively new belief, appearing in only the last 150 years.

• Replacement theology says that the church has replaced Israel. However, we all, both Jew and Gentile, belong to the kingdom of darkness until we are saved by Christ and washed in his blood. Israel is part of the church because the church is simply the people of God.

• Some varieties of dispensationalism would say that believers shouldn’t preach the gospel to the Jewish people because they’re already saved. This view would claim that Gentiles are saved by the gospel and the Jews are saved by Old Testament covenant.

Bible Verses Referenced in the Podcast

Matthew 24:23-28, Matthew 24:40-41, Matthew 25:31-46, Revelation 7:2-12, 1 Thessalonians 5:1-2, John 8:31-38, Romans 11:11-31, John 15:1-11

Episodes in this Podcast Series

About Joshua West

Joshua West serves as the Church Leadership Network Director at World Challenge helping equip and empower pastors all over the world. Joshua’s desire is to raise up ministers who will correctly and boldly preach the word with passion and integrity. The point of all his work and writings is to preach the gospel, glorify God and to teach sound doctrine.

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About Gary Wilkerson

Gary Wilkerson is the President of World Challenge, an international mission organization that was founded by his father, David Wilkerson. He is also the Founding Pastor of The Springs Church, which he launched in 2009 with a handful of people. He has traveled nationally and internationally at conferences and conducted mission ventures such as church planting, starting orphanages, clinics, feeding programs among the poorest of the poor and the most unreached people of the earth. Gary and his wife Kelly have four children and live in Colorado Springs, CO.

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