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By Susan Nikirk   



A prophetic look at The Church, Israel and the Jewish People today!

We live in a crucial hour, when we need to hear what is God saying to His Church. This is a first of a series of articles that will uncover God's plan for the Church and the Jewish people. In my recent trip to the Netherlands, The Lord gave me a specific prophetic message for His churches. The Church is called to be a Ruth!  The book of Ruth reveals the revelation of the role of the true Church in the restoration of Israel, the Jewish People, and the return of the Lord. It was through this gentile woman Ruth, who refused to leave her Jewish mother-in-law Naomi, that Jesus The Messiah would be born, and bring salvation to the world.

The Body of Messiah today has taken different stands toward Israel. One is replacement theology, where the church replaces Israel and the Jewish people. A second is what I call fanatic Zionism, all Israel and no Church. A third is apathy, not caring, not getting involved at all or being too busy with their own agendas. Then there is Ruth, the true friend of Israel and the Jewish people.

As we take a short look at the book of Ruth, it unfolds during the day of Judges, a time of much confusion and turmoil in Israel, with only temporary periods of peace. Does this sound familiar today? A famine plagued the land and an Israelite couple, Elimelech, Naomi, and their two sons leave to go to live in a gentile pagan land of Moab. The two sons marry two moabite women, Ruth and Orpah; and after a period of time Naomi's husband and two sons die. Naomi hears that the famine in Israel is over, and decides to return to her homeland.  In 1948, Israel was restored as a nation and Jewish people began to return to their homeland (aliyah), and continue today. Naomi and her two daughters-in-law start on their way back to Judah, when Naomi pleads with Orpah and Ruth to return to their land, since she feels that there is no future for them with her.

As we look prophetically, Naomi represents Israel and the Jewish people. The two daughters-in-law, Orpah and Ruth are a picture of two types of churches and believers today. Both were married into the covenant people, but only one lives up to her vows.

In Ruth chapter one, Orpah is shown weeping, she kisses Noami, but goes back to her people, her land, and her gods. Orpah, whose name means stiff-necked and the back; is a type of church and believer that says they love Israel and the Jewish people, but eventually turn their backs. They do not have God's heart in the matter.   We see here a false type of superficial affection, where it looks as if Orpah loves Naomi. Many churches and believers today are too busy with their own vision and programs; they do not discern the spiritual significance of clinging to Israel and the Jewish people. Throughout the centuries there have been Christians who expressed their devotion and commitment to the God of Israel, but disregarded and rejected His ancient people.

Naomi continues to now beg Ruth to go back to her land, but Ruth refuses to do so, "Urge me not to leave you, or to return from following after you: for where you go I will go; and where you lodge, I will lodge: your people shall be my people, and your God my God: where you die, will I die, and there be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also but death separate you and me." Ruth chose to not only follow Naomi, but The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and the ways of His people.   Ruth's name means friend. This is a type of church and believer that show true love and friendship to Israel and the Jewish people. “A true friend is one who sticks closer than a brother." Even today in the body of Messiah, there are those that profess to be friends, but are really Orpah's in disguise; especially when it comes to the subject of Israel and the Jewish people. This is the true dividing line of today.   The Spirit of God is raising up Churches of Ruths to reveal The Messiah and His great love to unbelieving Israel, so she can again be a light to the nations.

Upon Naomi and Ruth's return to the land, great favor comes upon them. Due to an old testament law, Ruth is able to glean in the harvest fields of Boaz, a near relative of Naomi. The law said, that the corners of a field being harvested must be left for the poor and the stranger (gentile). Ruth brings home to Naomi more than enough. We see here that when a Gentile clings to a Jew, that blessings come, Genesis 12:3, "I will bless those that bless you". Boaz eventually marries Ruth, and under the Levitical law of kinsman redeemer, the nearest relative could redeem a widow's heritage by marrying her; so Naomi's land and heritage are restored.

ruth2.jpg (17933 bytes)Ruth bears a son; Ruth 4:15-16 states how this affects Naomi, "And he shall be unto you a restorer of your life, and a nourisher of your old age; for your daughter-in-law, which loves you, which is better to you than seven sons, has born him. And Naomi took the child and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse to it."   Here we see a supernatural miracle, an older Jewish woman nursing this child with milk from her own breasts. This is a very prophetic sign since, Naomi represents Israel and the Jewish people, and Ruth represents the Gentile Church. We see here a restoration of "life from the dead" for the Jewish people, and it was brought forth from a Gentile. This is God's heart for today. From this child, whose name was Obed, came Jesse, and from Jesse came David, the ancestor of Jesus The Messiah. Just as the first coming of Jesus involved the Jewish people so does the second coming.

In Romans 11, Paul speaks very clearly that God has not forgotten His people, and he says in verse 15 that when they are restored it will bring "life from the dead", that is real revival! It also states in Romans 11 that, “the gifts and callings are without repentance". The Ruth Church will help restore the Jewish people back to faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.  God's calling for Israel must be recognized by the Church before Israel recognizes it.

There are 700 scriptures that speak of the Jewish people returning to the land of Israel. God's integrity is at stake. Israel is God's land and the children of Israel are married to God, so they hold joint tenancy. In Ezekiel 36, it clearly states that God will bring the children of Israel back to the land in order to sanctify His holy name. We must remember that the war against Israel and the Jewish people is not just a natural one, but a spiritual one.  Throughout the church age and even prior to it, we can see a constant plot of Satan to bring total destruction to the Jewish race. We call this anti-Semitism; but it has had and has even today many different names and shows itself in different religions and thinking. The real enemy is Satan, and he hates the Jewish people because he hates God. If Satan can stop the Jewish people from returning or living in the land of Israel, this will prove God to be a liar, since God has sworn in His Word that they will never be destroyed. But, the greater reason Satan hates the Jewish people is that the salvation of Israel means the return of Jesus, the resurrection of the righteous, the revival of the Church, the restoration of the earth, and the doom of Satan's kingdom.

As the Lord is preparing for His second coming, The Church has a great part to play in this prophetic end-time. Isaiah 49:22 says, "Thus says the Lord God, Behold I will lift up my hand to the Gentiles, and set up my standard to the people: and they shall bring your sons in their arms, and your daughters shall be carried upon their shoulders." The Ruth Church will join herself to Naomi, Israel and the Jewish people, and help them to go back to their land by praying, loving, supporting, and if necessary being a refuge for them. As the Ruths of today cling to and help restore Naomi, it will hasten the return of the Lord. "And he shall send Jesus The Messiah, which before was preached to you: Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began." (Acts 3:20-21)  Restoration never comes unless there is a love for what is being restored. God's love for the world through the sacrifice of Jesus, brought restoration to mankind. The Church’s love for the restoration of Israel and the Jewish people will usher in the second coming of Jesus.

During World War II there were many Ruths in the Church that helped to hide many Jewish people, throughout Europe. As a Jewish believer myself, and a daughter of a family from Germany that escaped the Holocaust, I am thankful for all those who helped my Jewish brethren - I embrace you. But, I also challenge you today, as persecution arises again toward the Jewish people, will you stand with them and help them? Many of you know that persecution has been rising in Europe and in Russia. There have also been signs of anti-Semitism in America. If the Jewish people need help where will they go? A number of years ago, the Holy Spirit gave me a word as I was speaking in a Pastors meeting in the Netherlands, it was "prepare cities of refuge". This scripture is found in the book of Joshua, and the word refuge means a hiding place. We cannot give refuge to people unless we have God's heart in the matter.

ruth3.jpg (21018 bytes)Do you want to be close to the heart of God? Then you need to get close to the things that are in the heart of God. God speaks about the nation of Israel and the Jewish people in His word saying, "whoever touches you touches the apple of his eye." The apple means the pupil of the eye, the center and place of sight. This clearly tells us that the Jewish people are in the center of God's heart, His passion fruit. The Church needs God's heart regarding Israel and the Jewish people.

There has been a cry since the Holocaust "Never Again". As persecution continues to rise against Israel and the Jewish people, what will you do? Will you ignore it and turn your back? Or will you be a true friend and restorer of God's people? Will you be an Orpah? Will you be a Ruth?

Next In The Series: "Jew & Gentile, One New Man"  Go There >>

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