Israel’s Exiles

Three times the children of Israel have been exiled from their land.

  • 430 years in Egypt;
  • 70 years in Babylon and
  • 1900 years among the nations.

THE FIRST EXILE was foretold by Abraham and the exact time of the exile specified as 430 years (Genesis 15). Precisely on time, Israel came out of Egypt by the direct intervention of God to fulfill the word He had given to Abraham. In Genesis 15: 13-14 God says to Abraham: “Know for certain that your offspring will be sojourners in a land that is not theirs and will be servants there, and they will be afflicted for four hundred years. But I will bring judgment on the nation they serve, and afterward thy shall come out with great possessions.” Here God predicts the events of the Exodus, when they came from Egypt with great possession. Here He also predicts the exact date of the Exodus – 400 years after Isaac is declared the heir.

In Exodus 12;40-41 we read “The sojourn of the people of Israel who lived in Egypt was 430 years. At the end of 430 years , on that very day, all the hosts of the Lord went out from the land of Egypt.” The apparent discrepancy between the 400 years referred to in Genesis 15 and the 430 years referred to in Exodus 12 is easy to explain. The 400 years refers to the sojourn of the descendants of Abraham and begins from the year that Isaac was recognized as heir. The 430 years begins thirty years earlier when Abraham received the promise.

Had the children of Israel not left Egypt on the exact year then Abraham would have been a false prophet. Abraham had accurately heard from God – and God, who never lies – against all odds fulfilled His word.

Note: The children of Israel were not in Egypt for the entire 430 years, but were sojourners without inheritance for 430 years after the Land was promised to Abraham.

THE SECOND EXILE to the land of Babylon was a fulfillment of the prophetic words of Moses and Jeremiah. . Jeremiah specified the duration of the exile as 70 years (Jeremiah 29:10) and exactly as predicted God intervened again and returned Israel to its land. Their return was against all odds, including an attempt to annihilate and exterminate them in the days of Haman.

THE THIRD EXILE began with the fall of Jerusalem and the scattering of the Jewish people to the nations in 70 AD, and ended in the twentieth century when they came back to their land. Their regathering fulfills the prophesies of many of the great prophets including Moses, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah, Hosea, Amos, Zechariah and Jesus. The climax of the modern return of Israel to their land is the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948 and the return of Jerusalem to their control in 1967. The regathering continues to this day .


The key event in the present-day return is the restoration of Jerusalem to Jewish control. Amazingly the exact date for this was given by Jesus’ interpretation of Daniel’s prophecy in Daniel Chapter 8, which He referenced in Luke 21.24.

Daniel describes a vision of the conquest of the Middle East (including Jerusalem) by a King from Greece (Chapter 8:5 & Daniel 8:21). In the middle of the vision he asks the angel that brought him the message “For how long is the vision concerning the continual burnt offering, the transgression that makes desolate, and the giving over of the sanctuary and host to BE TRAMPLED UNDER FOOT?” (I.e. ‘How long will Jerusalem be trampled underfoot?) The answer was given: “Unto evening and morning two thousand three hundred: and the sanctuary shall be cleansed.” (Literal translation Daniel 8:13-14)

Daniel was told that Jerusalem (the place of the sanctuary) was to be under gentile domination for a 2,300 period. Most scholars agree this is a period of 2,300 years. It is commonly known that Alexander the Great of Greece conquered the Middle East in 334 BC. The prophecy indicates that Jerusalem will be “trampled underfoot by the Gentiles” for 2,300 hundred years from Alexander’s conquest of the Middle East. This takes us, amazingly, to exactly 1967!! 334 BC +2300 =1967 AD. (Since there is no year 0 we add 1.)

There can be no doubt, therefore, that Jesus understood that Jerusalem would come back under Jewish sovereignty 2,300 years after Alexander’s conquest i.e. 1967. When Jesus predicted the destruction of Jerusalem and the third exile of the Jewish people He quoted from the question that Daniel asked the angel, “How long is the vision of the sanctuary and host to be TRAMPLED UNDERFOOT?” (Daniel 8:14) and He states simply that “Jerusalem will be TRAMPLED UNDERFOOT by the gentiles until the times of the gentiles are fulfilled.” (Luke 21:24)

In the light of this tremendous prophecy of Daniel and its interpretation by Jesus there can be no doubt that June 1967 and the present day restoration of Jerusalem to Jewish control is the fulfillment of the divine plan and not a mere accident of history! Every Christian should know this – especially Bible teachers, politicians and journalists.


As we have seen through studying the prophecies concerning the restoration of Israel apart from speculation about the unfoldment of future days we can be certain that we are living at the end of the age.

Those who oppose the return of the Jewish people to their land are defying the plan and purposes of God. Not only that, but they are also declaring that the prophetic predictions of Jesus are meaningless and His words can be ignored. Christian politicians, journalists, theologians and preachers who are seeking to limit Jewish return to their own city are defying their faith. We are not saying that every action of the Jewish government, police or army is perfect. Nor is every action of any government perfect.

The unbelieving international community is extremely ignorant when they defy and ignore the plan of God. They think that through this they will bring peace. The opposite is true. “They have healed the wound of my people lightly, saying, ‘Peace, peace,’ when there is no peace.” (Jer. 8:11) By ignoring God’s clear plan to bring world peace and redemption they are setting the stage for international instability. All Christians believe that the return of Messiah Jesus will bring peace to this strife torn world
Only the Bible can predict events like this with such astonishing accuracy. The Bible is completely unlike any other book. God authenticates the accuracy of His word and His sovereignty over history and the outlines of His plan by describing events before they happen. Jesus gave the date of 1967 –1,934 years before the reunification of Jerusalem. Daniel spoke of Alexander more than 200 years before his conquest of the Middle East happened. God’s word is truth. We are foolish when we ignore Him and His word. Our society ignores God’s word thinking its plans and wisdom are better. God has a solution to our problems but we must listen to Him and not oppose His plans.