On Borrowed Time
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During World War I, German U-boats had been sinking British ships bringing gunpowder ore from South America. A British chemist, Chaim Weizmann, discovered the process by which gunpowder production would not require the South American ore. The British government rewarded Weizmann by granting his request that Israel be allowed to reestablish a homeland in Palestine, then under British control. The Balfour Agreement, signed April 30, 1918, was the start of the last righteous generation that would end in the rapture of the Church on Rosh-Hashana, the Feast of Trumpets, 1988. 5

Three wicked generations of 40 years each were given in the bible. The first was the wicked generation which died in the desert in the days of Moses. The second wicked generation was given to Israel by Jesus, from 30 A.D. to 70 A.D, in Matt. 23:33- 36. In 70 A.D. Israel was destroyed by Roman armies and scattered throughout the world.

The third 40-year wicked generation is spoken of in Jesus' Olivet discourse: "Now learn this lesson from the fig tree; as soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near I tell you the truth. This generation will certainly not pass until all these things have happened." (Matt. 24:32-4). The fig tree represents Israel. The last wicked generation started May 14, 1948, the day Israel became a nation. It will end 40 years later on the Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur, 1988.

The Israeli rabbi Meir Kahane is acutely aware of the 40-year grace period. In an article written for the Sept. 27, 1985 edition of the Jewish Press, reprinted in the Dec. 1985 Prophecy in the News, published by Rev. J. R. Church of Oklahoma City, 40 days arises again and again in connection with sin and punishment in the bible. After quoting examples from Genesis, Jonah, Ezekiel and Jeremiah, Kahane says, "the state of Israel, which rose up in the year 1948, I am convinced, is the beginning not only of the redemption, but of the grace period granted us. In the very marrow of my bones, I feel that the Almighty, in His infinite mercy and goodness, gives us the final, beseeching opportunity to turn needless suffering into glorious and instant redemption.... The forty years tick away."

5 The days of a man's years are 70 years. (Ps. 90:10.)