The Bible is the world’s bestselling book of all time. It contains many different genres of writing including historical narrative, poetry, prophetic books and letters of instruction.
The first section of the Bible, known as the Old Testament, narrates the creation of the world, the fall of mankind and the selection of one very special man of faith, Abraham, through whom all nations of the earth would be blessed. Abraham was the father of the Israelite people.
In the first books of the Old Testament we read how God promised Abraham’s descendants a land of their own where they could live in a theocracy which would demonstrate God’s character to the world. However they were warned that if they failed to follow God’s laws and stopped recognising and following Him as their God they would lose their land and be dispersed among ‘all the nations of the world’.
Although this did in fact happen and in 70AD the last of the Israelites were scattered throughout the world, God sent prophets who foretold a time when God would gather His people back, restoring them both to their land and to Himself.
Fast forward to the twentieth century and we find the ANZAC soldiers playing a pivotal role in the First World War where they captured Sheba, a crucial town which allowed the Allies a foothold in the ‘Promised Land’ and ultimately led to the restoration of part of the land of Israel to the Jewish people in 1948. This was in fulfilment of many Biblical prophecies. We still await the time when God will restore the hearts of the Israeli people to Himself. In the meantime those who are not descendants of Abraham now have an opportunity to get to know Jesus, the Jewish Messiah (Chosen One) as the Saviour of the world.
What an encouragement to know that God is watching over His word to fulfil it, is watching over His people, and has allowed this tiny nation of New Zealand, through its ANZACs, to play a critical part in establishing the reliability of the prophecies in His Word.
For historical detail see http://www.lighthorse.org.au/famous-battles/world-war-one/famous-battles-the-battle-at-beersheba
Grace Christian Fellowship
Esther is the Co-ordinator of Bible in Schools in Gisborne and teaches children at Motu school, her local school, about God's word in the bible.
Published in the Gisborne Herald 25 April 2015