Was Yeshua a Zionist? No, He was not a Zionist; He was more than a Zionist.
Here are three dimensions of being “more” than a Zionist:
1. Kingdom or state. When Yeshua was raised from the dead, He taught for 40 days on the coming of the kingdom of God (Acts 1:3). His disciples understood this to mean “restoring the kingdom to Israel” (v. 6). And while changing the disciples' understanding of the timeframe, Yeshua affirmed that indeed, ultimately, He would restore the kingdom to Israel (v. 7).
The vision of Herzl and Ben Gurion was to have a Jewish state. We agree. However, Yeshua is proposing a kingdom. A kingdom is more than a state, just as the position of a king is greater than the position of a prime minister. Yeshua is returning to be King of kings, not just a head of state.
2. Shekinah glory. What kingdom did Yeshua and His disciples refer to as being restored? The only one that could be restored: the kingdom of David and Solomon. In that kingdom, the cloud of glory filled the temple (2 Chronicles 5) and fire fell on the altar (2 Chron. 7). However, in the kingdom of Yeshua, the presence of the Holy Spirit and the glory fire dwell inside the disciples themselves, not in the temple (Acts 2:1-4).
Which is greater—glory dwelling in the temple or glory dwelling in the people? Obviously, it’s the latter. The word Shekinah means “dwelling inside.”
3. All nations. When Yeshua’s disciples asked Him to restore the kingdom, He sent them out to be witnesses of Him and His kingdom, from “Jerusalem, all Judea and Samaria, and even unto the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8). In effect, He expanded the borders of Israel not just to include both sides of the Jordan (very “politically incorrect” these days), but all the way to California and Japan—to the ends of the earth. In so doing He fulfilled the prophecies of Isaiah for Israel to be a “light of the nations” (Is. 42:6; 49:6).
Yeshua’s kingdom is for all peoples (Is. 9:6; 56:7). This is not just a Zionist state, nor even an Israelite kingdom. It is a worldwide commonwealth, or empire, under the rule of Yeshua the Messiah (great-great-great grandson of David and Solomon).
Asher Intrater, along with his wife, Betty, is the director of Revive Israel Ministries, an apostolic ministry team dedicated to revival in Israel. The Intraters are committed to world evangelism, the power of the Holy Spirit, personal integrity, the lordship of Yeshua, the unity of the Church and the restoration of the nation of Israel.
For the original article, visit reviveisrael.org.