We’re all familiar with the great exodus movement from the land of Egypt. It became the foundational movement for the people of God–the Israelites. Freed from bondage, the people were to enter into our Lord’s bountiful and glorious land- Israel. But something went horribly wrong, and the whole plan went “south” to use a common term.
But are you aware the Scriptures says that the Lord will “do it again”, in a similar way? Yes indeed it does! Let’s look at this most fascinating prophecy and see what the Lord has in plan for His remnant people.
“Therefore behold, the days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when they will no longer say, ‘As the LORD lives, who brought up the sons of Israel from the land of Egypt,’ but ‘As the LORD lives who brought up and led the offspring of the house of Israel out of the north country and out of all the countries where he had driven them.’ Then they shall dwell in their own land.”(Jeremiah 23:7-8)
The above is one packed prophecy! First we see that the time for this to occur is in the “future” days. And that there appears a direct leading of the Lord for His people, just as he did in the Egypt exodus. Next we notice that it’s from the “house of Israel”, meaning His church, His people.
We as Bible students know that this prophecy has not ever occurred yet, because all 12 tribes of the “house of Israel” have never been re-united and brought back to their own land.
We as SDA know all too well that since Ellen G. White appeared from God as our prophetess, His hand has directly guided HIS CHURCH, the SDA church. This can only mean that the people in this last days exodus will come from the SDA church. She establishes the fact that the SDA church is the “Israel” of today with the following quote.
“In order to be purified and to remain pure, Seventh-day Adventists must have the Holy Spirit in their hearts and in their homes. The Lord has given me light that when the Israel of today humble themselves before Him, and cleanse the soul-temple from all defilement, He will hear their prayers in behalf of the sick and will bless in the use of His remedies for disease.” (Test. for the Church, Vol. 9, p.164)
What a grand joy! What a promise! Someday soon we’ll be under the direct hand of God and led to our “own land”, a land flowing with “milk and honey”. And there has only been ONE land, our Lord has called His. It is Israel. ”His foundation is in the holy mountains. The Lord loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob. Glorious things are spoken of you, O city of God! Selah.” (Psalm 87 :1-3)
“On that day I swore to them that I would bring them out of Egypt into a land I had searched out for them, a land flowing with milk and honey, the most beautiful of all lands” (Ezekiel 20:6).
While we won’t go into all the prophecies about how the land of Israel will be cleared out now, let’s look at a very important one.
“Gather yourselves together! Yes, gather together, you shameless nation, before the decree is carried out [and] the day passes like windblown husks, before the LORD’s burning anger comes to you, before the day of the LORD’s anger comes to you. (Zeph.2:1-2)
The above prophecy is for the last days, as can be clearly seen by reading the 1st chapter of Zephaniah. So we ask–what nation today is shameless? What nation is stoutly calling the God of Israel, as it’s God, yet shamelessly calling His Son- an impostor? In case you haven’t guessed, verse 4 of Zeph. clears it.
“For Gaza shall be deserted, and Ashkelon shall become a desolation; Ashdod’s people shall be driven out at noon, and Ekron shall be uprooted.”( Zeph 2:4) The area is none other than Israel–specifically the Palestine area.
We see that in the near future the land of Jerusalem shall be cleared out for God’s people to come back. This, as we well know, is certainly shaping up as we speak. We see that the middle east situation is very tense and that the last big war is about to take place in this area–”Gather yourselves together”. The nations are real close to this gathering and this purpose is that of the Lord’s. He wants His land back for His people.
So this exodus is now in the preparation stage. The Lord’s last message is going out right now, pleading with His people to accept His offer. And what is this offer? To listen and heed His final message of repentance and reformation instructions as given by Elijah. Soon the angels will have marked the last of the “God’s elect”, the 144,000. When our prophetess was called to deliver His messages to us, what was the very first message of importance to us, His SDA church? Her first vision- the 144,000. “”Let us strive with all the power that God has given us to be among the hundred and forty-four thousand. “–(Review and Herald, March 9, 1905.)
We remember that just prior to the actual leaving of the land of Egypt, the Lord commanded the people to mark the door posts in order to be saved from the destroying angel. Ellen White explains the anti-typical future event of this same original type event.
” When God was about to smite the first-born of Egypt, He commanded the Israelites to gather their children from among the Egyptians into their own dwellings and strike their door posts with blood, that the destroying angel might see it and pass over their homes. It was the work of parents to gather in their children. This is your work, this is my work, and the work of every mother who believes the truth.
The angel is to place a mark upon the forehead of all who are separated from sin and sinners, and the destroying angel will follow, to slay utterly both old and young.” (Test. for the Church, vol. 5, p.505).
Here we see that she equates the future prophetic Ezekiel 9 to the beginning of the exodus out of Egypt. Is this divine or coincidence? Of course she was divinely led to pair the two together. You see, the church is to be a pure church, and after this happens then the exodus begins.
This all comes together prophetically, as we know that the Loud Cry cannot happen until all the sinners of the house of Israel are removed. The Lord’s full Spirit is then poured out. “Only those who have withstood temptation in the strength of the Mighty One will be permitted to act a part in proclaiming it (the Third Angel’s message) when it shall have swelled into the Loud Cry.” (Review and Herald, Nov. 19, 1908).
Ellen White describes this pure church time, “Mighty miracles were wrought, the sick were healed, and signs and wonders followed the believers. God was in the work, and every saint, fearless of consequences, followed the convictions of his own conscience and united with those who were keeping all the commandments of God; and with power they sounded abroad the third message. I saw that this message will close with power and strength far exceeding the midnight cry.(Early Writings, P.278).
Obviously the Lord’s power will be poured out to enable His servant to do these miracles. But as history shows us in the example of Achan, He will not tolerate sins among His people. In (Test. for the Church, vol. 3, p.270), we read, “God’s displeasure is upon His people, and He will not manifest His power in the midst of them while sins exist among them and are fostered by those in responsible positions.”
This final exodus, this display of His power to win the true in heart around the world, is the fulfillment of God’s many promises to the “house of Israel”. Unlike us, God keeps each and every promise. This is one of the main reasons His has sent “Elijah” to us. Since the writings of the Scriptures began, some of the secret passages of the Lord were left undiscovered or unexplained until Elijah came. The prophet himself explains-
“…since Elijah is to herald the great day, he can therefore be the only one who will rightly interpret the prophecies of the day, which are still mysteries to Christendom, and even to our own Denomination! Indeed, to reiterate, it is for this very reason that the prophet is sent. He is to unroll the scroll to explain what the day of the Lord is like, what the Lord will do then, and how we may survive His judgments.
To re-emphasize the fact, let it be said again that being the last of the prophets Elijah is, therefore, the only one who can open to our understanding all the prophecies of the Scriptures pertaining to the great and dreadful day of the Lord — prophecies which heretofore have been only mysteries to all. Thus he is, as the Scriptures say, to blow the trumpet in Zion, and to sound an alarm in God’s holy mountain, in the church.
In doing all this, he sets in motion the Power that is to restore all things. Hence Christ’s positive declaration: “Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.” Matt. 17:11. Inevitably, then, without his message we would die in our ignorance and in our sins — never live to see the restoration completed.”(General Conference Special p.19-20)
This “restoration” is beginning now with the message being spread, read, then heeded by those who humbly do as the Lord’s last messenger said to do. Soon those who receive the mark in their forehead will–” Break forth into joy, sing together, You waste places of Jerusalem! For the LORD has comforted His people, He has redeemed Jerusalem. (Isaiah 52:9)
“It shall come to pass in that day that the Lord shall set His hand again the second time to recover the remnant of His people who are left, from Assyria and Egypt, from Pathros and Cush, from Elam and Shinar, from Hamath and the islands of the sea.” (Isaiah 11:11)
“‘For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land. Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean. Your filth will be washed away, and you will no longer worship idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. And you will live in Israel, the land I gave your ancestors long ago. You will be my people, and I will be your God.” (Ezekiel 36:24-28).
Has the Lord ever brought back His people into His land- Israel, and they then no longer worshiped idols? No, this has never happened yet. This is prophetic of the very soon to come time, when He shall again lead His people into the “promised land”. This is the culmination of the – second exodus.
In closing, let us remember that the Lord’s word clearly says what He will soon do, are we going to be a part of this last day exodus? To make the trip back to “our own land”? To be part of His grand final plan on this earth? Let us say–YES!