Behold Your God!
We need to watch Jerusalem. From now on, you will find that the focal point of world events is in the Middle East, especially Jerusalem. That is what your own Bible foretells.
Most people do not look at this city that way or place that much importance on it. But soon, everyone will see that everything revolves around Jerusalem! There will be great crises and catastrophes involving Jerusalem that dwarf anything happening in any other city.
God says He has hidden His face from Jerusalem for some time because of the Jews’ rebellion. But He also says He will yet choose Jerusalem as His own city. He is going to do amazing things in this specific place. It is from this city that He will spread rest and healing and peace around the world—and beyond!
When I first visited Jerusalem, I was in awe of what I saw at places described right there in Scripture. It brought the Bible alive to me. It is emotionally moving; perhaps you have had the same experience. God cares about Jerusalem too! If we really understand Him and the Bible, Jerusalem will be important to us as well.
A Message for Judah
Isaiah 40:9 begins: “O thou that tellest good tidings to Zion, Get thee up into the high mountain; O thou that tellest good tidings to Jerusalem …” (Jewish Publication Society translation). God uses Zion as a symbol of His own true Church. So this shows that something is wrong: Most of God’s Church has actually turned away from Him when they should be delivering this message of good tidings. So someone needs to tell them good tidings.
That verse concludes, “[L]ift up thy voice with strength; Lift it up, be not afraid; Say unto the cities of Judah: ‘Behold your God!’” What a message! This “voice” proclaims the return of the Messiah!
Notice how God states this here: “Say unto the cities of Judah: ‘Behold your God!’” Why does God speak in this context only to Judah, referring to the modern-day Jewish state? Because the Messiah is going to be returning to Jerusalem and the cities of Judah to establish His throne there! So this is a tremendous honor given to the people of Judah. I’m sure they have a certain awe of this event about to come upon them. What a message: Behold your God!
One theme throughout the Bible, Old Testament and New, is the throne of David. God powerfully used David, “a man after [God’s] own heart,” and established his throne, promising that his dynasty would literally last forever (Acts 13:22; 2 Samuel 7:16). That throne has existed since the time of David—all the way through the history of the kingdom of Israel, then the kingdom of Judah, then through the British Isles, all the way to today. That throne will be there for the Messiah to assume when He returns to Jerusalem. You can see even just by that event why this city is so important.
This will be an earthshaking event. It will start a revolution like you cannot even imagine! A government will emerge that ends all the deception, poverty, disease and wars—emanating from that throne in that city. Behold your God!
In spite of all the false churches and deceptions that have existed for thousands of years, God has always had His “little flock,” His true Church with His message of warning and hope. But today, there is a message going out to the Jews, to the cities of Judah.
God says the message is, Behold your God! That is the big message! There will be trials and tests and difficult times, but behold your God: The Messiah is returning! That message is being delivered in a specific way today: through biblical archaeology.
We are honored to be involved in biblical archaeology in Jerusalem. It all began with Herbert W. Armstrong, who entered a deal with Hebrew University in 1968 to help excavate parts of the Old City, beginning the most important archaeology project in the world. Mr. Armstrong sent hundreds of Ambassador College students to help with the “big dig,” and he developed a close friendship with archaeologist Prof. Benjamin Mazar, as well as with Mayor Teddy Kollek and several Israeli prime ministers.
After Mr. Armstrong died in 1986 and his successors destroyed his work, we raised it back up with the Philadelphia Trumpet, the Key of David television program, Herbert W. Armstrong College and, beginning in 2006, biblical archaeology. Our college students and staff assisted Professor Mazar’s granddaughter, archaeologist Dr. Eilat Mazar, and Hebrew University, on six excavation seasons through 2018, prior to her death in 2021. We participated in further excavations last year and this year.
Did you know that the Bible discusses biblical archaeology and shows that it leads directly into the Second Coming?
“For thy servants take pleasure in her stones, and favour the dust thereof” (Psalm 102:14). We take pleasure in the stones and dust of Jerusalem, which is key to unlocking so much rich history. We are inspired by it in many ways.
Verse 13 says that “the set time, is come.” This is the set time for God to show favor to Zion, His true Church, and especially to His very elect, giving them the honor to be a part of this great archaeology project in Jerusalem. We are honored to participate in these significant endeavors.
“When the Lord shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory” (verse 16). The context is these archaeological activities and the messages contained in these finds going out to Judah and even to the world. That leads right into the glory of Christ’s Second Coming! This is a sign of how imminent that event is!
We publish a magazine mainly for the Jewish nation of Israel and the city of Jerusalem titled Let the Stones Speak. Those stones really do have a message for the cities of Judah and for the world if they are interested. Everyone should be interested because that message concerns all of us—all of mankind! And how inspiring it is!
“So the heathen shall fear the name of the Lord, and all the kings of the earth thy glory” (verse 15). Once Christ returns, the whole world will be looking to Jerusalem. Tremendous glory, and the peace and joy and happiness that the world seeks, is coming so very soon! Behold your God!
Chapters 40-48 of the book of Ezekiel describe in detail the temple God will build in Jerusalem during the millennial rule of Jesus Christ. God lays out for us a clear plan. This temple will be built on the same location that Solomon and Zerubbabel built their temples.
There is a lot of detail here about how God is already measuring the city to prepare to build that temple. Ezekiel 48:15 says, “[A]nd the city shall be in the midst thereof.” That is Jerusalem, the capital of the world. “And the suburbs of the city shall be toward the north two hundred and fifty, and toward the south two hundred and fifty, and toward the east two hundred and fifty, and toward the west two hundred and fifty” (verse 17). Verse 30 talks about “the goings out of the city.” It is all measured and well organized. This city will be magnificent like no city has ever been.
“It was round about eighteen thousand measures: and the name of the city from that day shall be, The Lord is there” (verse 35). What a glorious time that will be! Jerusalem’s name will be The Lord is there. God will be there, and He will be ruling! Everything on Earth will revolve around His throne in Jerusalem. Thank God! What a spectacular time it will be! Realize what happiness, joy, success and wealth people will enjoy—and so soon!
How spectacular Jerusalem will be when Christ is ruling during that thousand-year period. And then, the final chapters of Revelation reveal that, after the Millennium, God the Father will come down with new Jerusalem! That city will be unimaginably grand: half the size of the United States of America! The future for Jerusalem just gets better and better!
One primary reason God has opened a door for this work to participate in archaeological digs in Jerusalem is to amplify the Ezekiel temple message. Already the measuring is going on for how to build Jerusalem when Christ gets here!
At our headquarters in Edmond, Oklahoma, we plan to open our third Armstrong Auditorium archaeological exhibit early next year: “Kingdom of David and Solomon Discovered.” It will display artifacts from the Iron Age ii period in Israel, from basically 1000 to 900 b.c., including an item relating to Solomon and the Queen of Sheba and incense. This will be the first time one of the inscriptions will be exhibited to the public.
King David conquered Jerusalem from the Jebusites. Others had failed to do so for hundreds of years, but David knew that God wanted Jerusalem for Israel and to be in Judah. These artifacts point back to that history. The same is true of some of our excavations in the City of David. There we have uncovered the spectacular 16-foot-wide walls of the palace of David. We have also helped excavate the enormous stones of Solomon’s city wall, which Dr. Mazar said “testifies to a ruling presence. Its strength and form of construction indicate a high level of engineering.’”
These stones are really proclaiming a marvelous message! God wants the people of Judah and the world to listen closely. If we believe God and prove what He is doing, we will be inspired, moved and stirred—and happy as never before!
Again, Isaiah 40:9 states, “O thou that tellest good tidings to Zion ….” These are good tidings: the best news you could hear! “[G]et thee up into the high mountain ….” There is a high mountain here—the City of David—right next to where we just finished a dig, helping and supporting Hebrew University; “O thou that tellest good tidings to Jerusalem ….” We have good news for Jerusalem, and for anybody who will focus on this. “[L]ift up thy voice with strength; Lift it up, be not afraid; Say unto the cities of Judah”—all the cities of Judah! Say this message through archaeology, and the meaningful finds that are being discovered: “Behold your God!” This is all about the Second Coming, and this biblical archaeology is leading right into the coming of the Messiah!