couple enjoying retirement September 3 Chronological Bible Study

Timeline. Map. Go to today’s Bible reading: Ezekiel 47, 48

The Ideal Retirement Center

What is your idea of the ideal retirement center? Plush gardens with a fountain of youth? Golfing everyday? Excellent fishing? No crime? Luxurious accommodations with excellent management? The best of health with no sickness? Fine restaurants?

Jerusalem will someday be like the ideal retirement center. The Bible describes the land of Israel at that time as the land of milk and wine, meaning it will be very verdant and prosperous (Joel 3:18). There will be a river of life flowing from the throne of God in the temple. It will flow west to the Mediterranean Sea and it will flow east into the Jordan Valley and go south. Its life giving waters will heal the Dead Sea so that there will be excellent fishing there. Along the way there will be trees with fruit that will be absolutely delicious, and its leaves apparently will heal all ailments (Ezekiel 47:1-10).

Never again will there be in it [Jerusalem] an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years; he who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere youth; he who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed, (Isaiah 65:20, NIV).

This was not Israel’s situation when Ezekiel prophesied to them. They were accursed. They were in exile in Babylon and their homeland was destroyed. They were grieving the losses of their homes, their people, and their land. But, in Israel’s time of trouble, an angelic man came to Ezekiel and described a great future for Israel. Today's Bible texts describe their beautiful land and its boundaries. In future lessons we will learn that Israel did not fully obey the LORD so these promises remain unfulfilled. When Jesus comes back to rule and reign, however, these promises will be fulfilled. In that day Israel will be in her own land. In that day all twelve tribes will be unified, at peace with one another and living together on the western side of the Jordan River. Their territory will extend from Syria to Egypt; farther than it has ever extended before, even more than in the days of King Solomon. The Jews will have their own land, according to their tribes, and in equal parts. They will receive the inheritance that was promised them from the days of Abraham (Genesis 17:8). Gentiles will be welcomed to live among them and also receive an inheritance in the land (Ezekiel 47:22-23). Even the future name of the city would encourage the exiles. The presence of the LORD had departed from Jerusalem in Ezekiel and Jeremiah’s day, but in that day the name of the city from then on will be “THE LORD IS THERE” (Ezekiel 48:35). (to see a map of this territory, go to more…)

In that day there will be a worship center, the temple, where the LORD God himself will be present. It will be a place of sacrifice, feasting and praise (Ezekiel 46). Probably the greatest worship music the world has ever heard will perform there to adorn the greatness and holiness of God.

In that day The Lord Jesus will reign as king. There will be no crime in Israel but peace. Even vicious animals and reptiles will be at peace with one another, and they will not need to worry about them harming their children (Isaiah 11:5-9). There will be perfect justice all over the world because his sanctified, glorified saints will help him govern the peoples of the earth (Revelation 20:6). Satan, that great enemy of all believers, will be bound at this time. He will not be able to exert his evil influence on the world (Revelation 20:1-3). For one thousand years the world will be at peace and will prosper. What a great retirement for spiritually converted Jews and Gentiles!

Lessons for living:

  • Are you troubled by your circumstances? If you are an unbeliever, repent and trust in Christ for your salvation (more...). If you are a believer, remember Jesus said in John 16:33b “in this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (NIV)
  • There is a glorious retirement center for Jewish believers and anyone who wants to live with them. And, God will be present there in his temple. There God will be gloriously worshipped. Wouldn’t you like to go to that church service?

Today’s Bible memory verses: 1Peter 1:3-4

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade-- kept in heaven for you, (NIV).

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