Yerushalayim Besieged

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In Yerushalayim Besieged Jesus describes and laments the consequences that will befall Israel as a result of its rejection of the Kingdom of Heaven and its ways of peace.

Matt. 24:15-16, 19-22; Mark 13:14, 17-20; Luke 21:20-24

(Huck 216; Aland 290; Crook 328)[1]

Updated: 21 October 2022

וּבִזְמָן שֶׁאַתֶּם רוֹאִים אֶת יְרוּשָׁלַיִם מוּקֶּפֶת הַגּוֹיִם דְּעוּ שֶׁהִגִּיעַ חָרְבָּנָהּ וּמִי שֶׁבְּתוֹכָהּ יִבְרַח וּמִי שֶׁבַּשָּׂדֶה אַל יִכָּנֵס לָהּ שֶׁיְּמֵי נָקָם אֵלּוּ כְּדֵי לְקַיֵּים אֶת כָּל הַכְּתוּבִים אִי לָעוּבָּרוֹת וְלַמֵּנִיקוֹת בְּאוֹתָם הַיָּמִים שֶׁתִּהְיֶה צָרָה גְדוֹלָה עַל הָאָרֶץ וְכַעַס לָעָם הַזֶּה וְיִפְּלוּ לְפִי חֶרֶב וְיִשָּׁבוּ אֶל הַגּוֹיִם וִירוּשָׁלַיִם תִּהְיֶה רְמוּסָה בְּיַד הַגּוֹיִם עַד שֶׁיִּשְׁלְמוּ קִצֵּי הַגּוֹיִם

“But when you see Yerushalayim besieged by Gentiles, rest assured that the hour of her destruction has come at last. Whoever is inside Yerushalayim at that time should flee. And no one outside the walls when the siege closes in should enter the city. For these are days of vengeance, in order to fulfill all the Scripture passages concerning it.

“Alas for the pregnant women and the nursing mothers when all this takes place! For there will be great distress in the land of Israel as God’s wrath is poured out on our people. Some will be killed, and some will go into captivity to foreign places. And the Gentiles will trample Yerushalayim until their times are complete.[2]

A reproduction of our reconstruction in an ancient Hebrew script. Font, based on the Isaiah Scroll from Qumran (1QIsaa), created by Kris Udd.

Reconstruction

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Conclusion

In Yerushalayim Besieged Jesus describes and laments the consequences that will befall Israel as a result of its rejection of the Kingdom of Heaven and its ways of peace. Having embraced a political and religious ideology of militant Jewish nationalism, the Jewish people were hurtling toward a catastrophic clash with the Roman Empire. In that clash the Temple would be destroyed and Jerusalem would be laid waste. Many in Israel would be killed, and many who survived would be taken captive among the Gentiles. But Israel was not without hope. When God’s anger passed, he would remember his covenant promises and bring the times of the Gentiles’ trampling of Jerusalem to an end. By that time the Gentiles will have filled up the full measure of their sins and it will be their turn to feel God’s fury. When this happened, the time for the redemption of Israel, the restoration of Jerusalem and the rebuilding of the Temple would be ripe.


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  • David N. Bivin

    David N. Bivin
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    David N. Bivin is founder and editor of Jerusalem Perspective. A native of Cleveland, Oklahoma, U.S.A., Bivin has lived in Israel since 1963, when he came to Jerusalem on a Rotary Foundation Fellowship to do postgraduate work at the Hebrew University. He studied at the Hebrew…
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    Joshua N. Tilton

    Joshua N. Tilton

    Joshua N. Tilton studied at Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts, where he earned a B.A. in Biblical and Theological Studies (2002). Joshua continued his studies at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Massachusetts, where he obtained a Master of Divinity degree in 2005. After seminary…
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