The Times of The Gentiles
by Pastor G. Reckart
Copyright 2003 All Rights Reserved
The times of the Gentiles is mentioned in Luke 21:24:
"24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled."
Following the end of the times of the Gentiles, Jesus said the following would take place:
"25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;
26 Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after the things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
27 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads for your redemption draweth nigh.
29 And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees;
30 when they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now night at hand.
31 so likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.
32 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled."
The times of the Gentiles coming into salvation in 34AD in Samaria and the times of the Gentiles to conquer and trod Jerusalem in 70AD are not the same "TIMES OF THE GENTILES." One has to do with Gentile engrafting into the olive tree and the other has nothing to do with salvation but judgment upon Israel for rejecting Christ and persecuting Christians.
This is an important text of Scripture. It sets the time of the second coming of Jesus after the time of the Gentiles has been fulfilled. It also sets the time frame of the text "This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled." What generation? Why the generation living when the time of the Gentiles comes to its end. Notice this text "This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled" follows in concert with the generation that sees the times of the Gentiles end. Since the gathering of the Gentiles into the Israel of God was also a part of unfulfilled prophecy, all cannot be fulfilled until this occurs. Which generation then is it that will not pass away till all be fulfilled? If the complete times of the ingathering of the Gentiles ended in 70AD in that generation, then there is no salvation for the Gentiles after that time because all would have been fulfilled. At issue here then, is what is the "times of the Gentiles"? The Preterist claim the times of the Gentiles has nothing to do with the ingathering salvation of the nations into the Church. They claim the times of the Gentiles is from 66-70AD and is the Roman army during its destruction of Jerusalem.
In other words, the times of the Gentiles refers to only the Romans who would trample Jerusalem under their feet between 66 and 70AD.
Is this true? No it is not!
Why is the setting of the exact timing of the "This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled" so important? Because those who spread the gnostic Preterist heresy claim the "generation that shall not pass away" was the one living between 30-70AD. But was all fulfilled in that 40 year time interval? The Preterist have a great need to make the words "this generation" mean the one living before 70AD. If they cannot, their heresy is exposed for what it really is, a lot of lies!
I want to point out that even in the Matthew 24 text that says the same thing, the generation to not pass away occurs in the fig tree parable, showing this text and Luke are parallel. The generation that would not pass away until all things were fulfilled, would be the one living when the times of the Gentiles came to its end. Anyone who perverts this sequential happening of events, has demonstrated they are abusers of the Word of God and flat out liars. The generation to see the end of the times of the Gentiles was not the one living in 70AD. If it were true that the generation living in 70AD was the one to witness the end of the times of the Gentiles, then the end of the times of the Gentiles ended in 70AD. It ended BEFORE THE CARRYING AWAY OF JEWS TO ALL NATIONS. Which contradicts the text! Jesus said many Jews would be carried captive to all nations until the times of the Gentiles was fulfilled. If the time of the Gentiles was fulfilled in 70AD then the return of the Jews from all nations where they had been carried captive would have ended in 70AD. The captivity would have ended before it began. This is false!
What do the Preterist say? Larry Smith says the times of the Gentiles was over when the Roman troops had completely destroyed Jerusalem in 70AD. He does not have enough time here for the Jews to be scattered and gathered again. He does not see here that Jesus is not referring to the times of the Gentiles being the Roman troops stomping over the ashes of Jerusalem. Jesus is making a reference to the bringing in of the Gentiles to the Israel of God, the one sheepfold of John 10 and the one olive tree in Romans 11. While this did begin prior to 70AD IT DID NOT END IN 70AD! The same Gospel preached to the Gentiles by Paul and the other Apostles prior to 70AD is the same Gospel preached among the nations today by the Jesus Messieh Fellowship International. That Gospel has for its focus the same Lord Jesus Christ, the same new birth (plan of salvation), the same holiness message, the same future hope, and the same eternal purpose in the elect.
Here are the sequence of events:
Jerusalem is partially destroyed. (See my study "Not One Stone.")
Many fall by the sword (are killed) and many led away captive to all nations.
Jerusalem to be trodden down, by the Gentiles (Greek: ethnos #1484: meaning all sorts of Gentiles, not just Romans. We see many other Gentiles who were to trod down Jerusalem between the time the Jews are carried away captive, and the times of the ethnos to trod it down is finished. How long will the different ethnos trod it down? Until the times of the Gentiles to come into salvation comes to its end: verse 24).
When the times of the Gentiles comes to its end: immediately there are catastrophic events in the heavens and upon earth (verse 25).
After these heaven and earth signs, Jesus appears in the heavens coming with power and great glory.
When will Jesus return? After the Jews are scattered not before!
When will Jesus return? After Jerusalem is trodden down and after the times of the Gentiles comes to its end! (not before they trod Jerusalem down and certainly not during the destruction and before the Jews are scattered to all nations. Jesus will not return until the times of the Gentiles has ended)! Preterist know this, that is why they make the times of the Gentiles to take place between 66 and 70AD and have Jesus coming back in 70AD at the end of the time they claim is the time of the Gentiles. Only thing is, the times of the Gentiles does not begin until AFTER Jerusalem is trodden down, and it was not fully trodden down until 70AD. So their placing the time of the Gentiles to start in 66AD and end in 70AD is a horrible contradiction.
When will Jesus return? After there are catastrophic signs in the heavens and on earth (not before). These take place during the tribulation and so Jesus will not come back until after the tribulation of those days as he said in Matthew 24:29.
Jesus gave a follow-up parable to describe the end of the times of the Gentiles and his coming.
He used the fig tree and told us we know summer is nigh by observing the fig tree when it shoots forth new branches. As we can tell summer time has come by observing the new branches shooting forth, even so, we can know the time of the Lord's return by the events in the heavens and on earth, and this signals the end of the times of the Gentiles.
Then Jesus said "this generation" speaking of the one to witness the end of the times of the Gentiles, the end of the captivity of the Jews, and the catastrophic events in the heavens and on earth. What generation is this? Was it the 70AD generation? No! It cannot fit the text or the time sequence need to fulfill and bring to pass the predictions of Jesus.
The Generation then that shall not pass away until all be fulfilled cannot be the 70AD generation. The words "this generation" must refer prophetically to the very one that would see Jesus physical return. Jesus did not physically return in 70AD. Therefore, from 30-70AD cannot be "this generation."
In the chart above, the bringing in of the Gentiles into the Church began with the Samaria revival in Acts 8. Prior to this time and for 3 and 1/2 years only Jews of the 12 Tribes were in the Church. The reason for this is, the 70th week of Daniel began at the baptism of Jesus (unto Messieh the Prince (Daniel 9:27); and had to be fulfilled upon the house of Israel as prophesied. Jesus preached the first 3 and 1/2 years of the 70th week. The last half of the 70th week was still for the Jews ONLY! The 70th week expired 3 and 1/2 years into the Church age. The end of the 70th week was signaled by the Samaritan revival. After this, the harvest of the fulness of the Gentiles be come in took the center stage of Bible prophecy and in conformity to the last edict of Jesus (Luke 24:47). The engrafting of the Gentiles into the Israel of God remains in effect right this very minute. This does not preclude or hinder the Jews from being saved. The Gospel is always to the Jew first. They are the natural branches if be so they are real Jews and not just from the Kazariah Gentile line (Koestler's 13th Tribe). The olive tree of Romans 11 is and was Jewish. Gentiles are grafted into something Jewish. The gathering of the nations into the olive tree does not make the Church Gentile nor does it place a difference between God's plan for Jew and Gentile in one Body. There is no such thing as God having one plan for the Jews and another separate plan for the Gentiles. No, the Israel of God started out on the day of Pentecost entirely Jewish and was Jewish for 3 and 1/2 years. After this, the middle wall of partition, the wall of enmity between Jew and Gentile was forever torn down. There is now in Messieh (Christ) ONE NEW MAN, thereby making peace between Jew and Gentile. Jesus began his ministry in the year 26AD after his 30th birthday which would have been around the month of September. September of 26AD would then have signaled the month the 69th week of Daniel ended and the 70th began. The middle of the 70th week was approximately March in 30AD. It would end sometime in September 33AD and the Gentiles could now come into the Kingdom of God, the olive tree.
September 26AD the 69th week ends;
September 26AD Jesus turns 30, is baptized, and 70the week begins;
March 30AD Jesus is crucified in the middle of the 70th week:
September 33AD the 70th week ends and the fulness of the Gentile harvest be come in began;
September 33AD the Samaritan revival begins with Apostle Philip, Apostle Peter, and Apostle John;
September 33AD the Jewish olive tree, the Church, the Israel of God, receives Gentiles into the congregation of the righteous.
The "times of the Gentiles" will come to its end at the end of the tribulation time period. Jews who return to God will do so through the existing olive tree, the Messianic Judaism of Jesus Messieh. They cannot achieve return by just going back and living on real estate. They must return to their God and that God is revealed in Jesus. There will be no acceptance of the Jews by God except through the Messieh. They have no future, no hope, no salvation, and no God, until they deal with Jesus of Nazareth whom they have rejected and hated all these centuries. Their hate and bigotry against their Saviour and Messieh, must cease and come to and end. All who do not do so will be forever eternally rejected and cast off from the presence of God. As the times of the Gentiles winds down, comes to its end, and the diaspora Jews begin to flock back to the land of Israel, it is time for the Jews to turn attention back to Jesus. Out of this Jewish multitude will come the remnant prophesied by Isaiah and by Paul (Romans 9:27). These will come back into the olive tree from which their ancient forefathers were severed. They will come into the true Israel of God. They will see the wrath of God upon the Jews who reject the Lord Messieh. They will see with the Gentile converts to the Judaism of Jesus, that God has only one people. It is "this generation that shall not pass till all things written are fulfilled. When the last of the Gentile harvest has come in and the last of the Jews to be saved is sealed, then the last day generation before the coming of Jesus will be living upon the earth.
At this very moment, this very second, the Light is going forth to the nations! Jews are shocked to learn there are still Christians in the world who believe they have no hope except in Jesus Messieh. They are shocked, that after centuries of manipulating the Gentile mind set that they have a private deal worked out with God separate from Gentiles, that someone is still preaching they must all be born again or die lost! They are still trying to spread the falsehood that their flesh gives them certain rights before God no other people have. Many will strike with a vengeance against being converted to the Jesus their forefathers crucified on the Cross. The times of the Gentiles will come to its close. The last remnant of Jews will come into the olive tree via Acts 2:38. The final chapter of prophetic history will come to its close. The last generation will see all that is written fulfilled. That generation shall not pass away until all is fulfilled. All was not fulfilled in 70AD!
Written for the elect who will not be deceived!