The Chief Cornerstone is the Only Hope Against Genocide

Chapter 17 of Corrupting The Image 3: The Chief Cornerstone is the Only Hope Against Genocide

There is ONE in heaven who will save his people and do his awesome work like at Mount Perazim and Gibeon, where He fought against the Nephilim. He will fight, but He will not come until the leadership of Jerusalem invites him back.  

Jesus gave this ultimatum in Matthew 23: “For I tell you, you will not see me from now until [απ αρτι εως ap arti eos] you say, ‘Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!’” (Matt 23:39 NET). Not long after that declaration, Jesus returned to his place, as prophesied: 

I will return again to My place till they acknowledge their offense. Then they will seek My face; In their affliction [tribulation צָרָ֥ה], they will earnestly seek Me” (Hos 5:15).  

The leadership will recognize Jesus in the time of tribulation, “Alas! For that day is great, that none is like it; and it is the time of Jacob’s trouble [tribulation צָרָ֥ה], but he shall be saved out of it” (Jer 30:7).  

There will likely be a final meeting of the leaders of Jerusalem, the Sanhedrin, or possibly the Knesset (or whoever is left). They may be taking refuge in one of the many underground bunkers in Israel or in the tunnels under the old city. An overwhelming dread will hang over them as all the nations of the world, led by the Beast, are pressing down on Jerusalem to raze it to the ground and annihilate every last person. As they stare extinction in the face and acknowledge all their military strength is gone and they have no more ability to fight for their country or their lives, they will pray and wonder why HaMashiach, Messiah is delayed.  

At that point, God will “pour out on the kingship of David and the population of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication …” (Zech 12:10NET2). God will give them what they need, which is to look deep into their nation’s soul and consider why Messiah has not come.  

Babylonian Talmud – He Will Raise Us Up 

The Babylonian Talmud reveals a great deal as to why they think Messiah has not come. The rabbis considered the extent of human history to be analogous to a week, where each day represented one thousand years. Based on that understanding, we read in Sanhedrin 97a:  

“Rabbi Kattina said: ‘Six thousand years shall the world exist, and one [thousand], it shall be desolate,’ as it is written, ‘And YHVH alone shall be exalted in that day.’ Abaye said: ‘it will be desolate two [thousand],’ as it is said, ‘After two days will he revive us: in the third day, he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.’”  

In a Rabbinic footnote to this passage, they interpreted the ‘two days’ in Hosea 6:2 to mean two thousand years. That means that after a period of two thousand years, and in the beginning of the next thousand years,259 God would revive them so that they might live in his sight. The passage continues with the Tanna debe Eliyyahu who taught on the coming of Messiah within the six thousand plus one thousand year “week”: 

“The world is to exist six thousand years. In the first two thousand there was desolation; two thousand years the Torah flourished; and the next two thousand years is the Messianic era.” 

The first two thousand years of “desolation” include the Fall of Adam and Eve, the Nephilim incursion and the Flood, followed by the tower of Babel (Genesis 1–11). The next two thousand years in which Torah flourished, began with Abraham and then of course, Moses on down until the first century (Genesis 12–Malachi). According to the Hebrew calendar, which begins with the year of creation, Abraham was born 1,948 years after creation (anno mundi). The date of Abraham receiving the covenant in Genesis 15 was given as 2,018 years anno mundi. That means the last two thousand years of the Messianic era in which Messiah comes and the war of Gog & Magog takes place, began around the first century on the Gregorian calendar, around the time of Jesus. According to a rabbinic footnote in the text, Messiah will come within that period. In other words, 1st 2,000 Desolation + 2nd 2,000 Torah Flourished + 3rd 2,000 the Messianic Age. 

The Talmud continues the discussion talking about the minimum time they calculated the world had to exist before Messiah would come.  

“Elijah said to Rab Judah, the brother of R. Salia the pious: “The world shall exist not less than eighty-five jubilees … Before that, do not expect him; afterwards thou mayest await him.’”260 

In other words, there would be a minimum of 85 Jubilees before Messiah would come. A Jubilee is calculated at either 49 or 50 years. If 49, then he would come after 4,165 years or if 50 years, then he would come 4,250 years after creation. In another text, a similar calculation is made based on “a scroll written in Hebrew in Assyrian characters” which had been discovered by a Jewish man “amongst the Roman archives.”261  

In it is stated that four thousand, two hundred and thirty-one years after the creation the world will be orphaned. [As to the years following,] some of them will be … in the war of Gog and Magog, and the remaining [period] will be the Messianic era.262 

Based on these texts from the Babylonian Talmud, the Messiah should have come sometime around the first century on the Gregorian calendar. The text continues in Sanhedrin 97b, “but through our many iniquities all these years have been lost.” Then the footnote states bluntly, “He should have come at the beginning of the last two thousand years; the delay is due to our sins.”263 

According to their own texts, without the prompting of any Christian texts, the Jewish sages already have the answer, but simply cannot see it. It is like when people come to ask for advice and after they have shared their story, the answer comes to them. Eventually, based on their own texts, they will realize their Messiah was expected to come four thousand years after creation and then shortly thereafter it “would be orphaned.” When they ask themselves why Messiah has not come, or “should have come at the beginning of the last two thousand years,” the answer will be in the same text: “The delay is due to our sins.”264 Whereas their text told them the world would be orphaned; and they will discover Jesus’ words, who said to his disciples “Let not your heart be troubled… I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you (John 14:1, 18). 

The Commoners Welcomed Jesus 

The masses of Jerusalem did accept Jesus as their king. On the first day of the week before Passover, which we often call Palm Sunday, Jesus instructed His disciples to go and fetch a young donkey, which He then rode into Jerusalem in the same fashion that Solomon did when he was coronated king.  

“The king also said to them, ‘Take with you the servants of your lord, and have Solomon my son ride on my own mule, and take him down to Gihon’” (1 Kgs 1:33).  

When Jesus had his disciples borrow a donkey for his entry into Jerusalem, He was broadcasting that He was the rightful king in the line of David, and the promised Messiah. 

“Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your King is coming to you; He is just and having salvation, Lowly and riding on a donkey, A colt, the foal of a donkey” (Zech 9:9).  

The people joyously welcomed Him in the name of YHWH as Messiah. 

“The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: “[הוֹשִׁ֘יעָ֥ה Hoshianna]! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the LORD!’ The King of Israel!” (John 12:12–12).  

Hoshianna is from the Hebrew root [ישע] yod-shin-‘ayin and means, “please save.” It is the same root as the name, Yeshua (Jesus) and Ye-shu-ah, salvation. As Hebrew speakers, they almost certainly did not miss that they were calling out, “Please save” to him whose name is “salvation.” They also said, “Baruch haba b’shem Adonai,” acknowledging Yeshua as the king of Israel and Messiah, the long-waited One who would bring peace.  

“And when He had come into Jerusalem, all the city was moved, saying, ‘Who is this?’ the multitudes said, ‘This is Jesus [Yeshua ישוע], the prophet from Nazareth of Galilee’” (Matt 21:10-11).  

We see in Psalm 118: 

 “I will praise You, for You have answered me, and have become my salvation [ישׁוּעָֽה Yeshu’ah] … The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone [פִּנָּֽה]. This was the LORD’s doing; It is marvelous in our eyes … Save now, I pray, [הוֹשִׁ֘יעָ֥ה Hoshianna] O LORD; blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD! We have blessed you from the house of the LORD … You are my God, and I will praise You; You are my God, I will exalt You” (Ps 118:18–28). 

The people probably had not connected all the theological dots about the hypostatic union—the triune nature of God. But what they did know was that He was the prophesied rightful king, the Messiah, and they put their hope in him. Sadly, the people in power refused to acknowledge him because He was a direct threat to their power; He was seen as a challenge to their leadership.  

The Leadership of Jerusalem Rejected Jesus 

Jesus’ heartfelt cry, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem,” was directed toward the seat of power, those who made decisions. Just like when we speak of Washington D.C., we are not talking about the taxicab drivers, fast food workers etc., but about the President, Congress, and the Supreme Court.  

The leadership of Jerusalem, like in a parable Jesus told, “hated him … saying, ‘We will not have this man to reign over us’” (Luke 19:14). When they rejected Yeshua and did not welcome Him in the name of the Lord, which is from Psalm 118, then that song did not apply to them. The promise, “The LORD is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me?” (Ps 118:6) no longer applied to the leadership of Jerusalem and consequently, Jesus said to them. “See! Your house is left to you desolate” (Matt 23:38).  

Why does it matter that the leadership rejected Jesus while the masses accepted Him? Isaiah laid it out plainly when he said, “The leaders of this people cause them to err, and those who are led by them are destroyed” (Isa 9:16). 

We may not like where the captain is taking the ship, but if the captain sinks the ship, then we all die. The leaders are the ones who are steering our ship; the leaders of Jerusalem were the ones steering the national ship. What they decided was policy—for better or worse. The fate of the leaders was the national fate of the people:  

  • Thus says the LORD concerning the prophets who make my people stray (Mic 3:5). 
  • O My people! Those who lead you cause you to err, and destroy the way of your paths (Isa 3:12). 
  • If the blind leads the blind, both will fall into a ditch (Matt 15:14). 

We also have several scriptures telling us “Judah is My lawgiver” (Ps 60:7),265 and this position of lawgiver; or holding: “the scepter shall not depart from Judah, Nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh comes; and to Him shall be the obedience of the people” (Gen 49:10). In other words, Judah is the one who gives the law by which Israel is to live, until Shiloh comes. That is, Jesus is the one to whom it belongs. If the leadership of Judah refuses to recognize that the kingdom belongs to him, then their house would be left desolate, as Jesus said, until they welcome him in the name of the Lord. Jesus made it clear “For I tell you, you will not see me from now until [απ αρτι εως ap arti eos] you say, ‘Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!’” (Matt 23:39 NET). 

Those three little words “from now until” are Jesus’ ultimatum: it is your move. Your house is desolate from now—this moment you have rejected me—until the time you welcome me in the name of the Lord.  

“This is the day the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it (Ps 118:24). Save now, I pray, O LORD; O LORD, I pray, send now prosperity (Ps 118:25). Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD! We have blessed you from the house of the LORD.” (Ps 118:26).  

The Builders and the Cornerstone 

Thus says the Lord GOD: “Behold, I lay in Zion a stone for a foundation, a tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; whoever believes will not act hastily” (Isa 28:16).  

This is the same language as in Psalm 118: 

“The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone” (Ps 118:22). “This was the LORD’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes” (Ps 118:23).  

The rejected stone is pivotal in understanding Israel’s salvation. Jesus specifically directed this passage of Psalms against the leadership of Jerusalem and consequently the implications of Isaiah 28:16 as well: 

 “Have you not even read this Scripture: ‘The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone (Mark 12:10). This was the LORD’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes’?” (Mark 12:11). “And they sought to lay hands on Him, but feared the multitude, for they knew He had spoken the parable against them” (Mark 12:12).  

Jesus was saying, “I am that stone.” The leadership of Jerusalem, of the house of Judah, missed that Jesus was that stone. Nevertheless, it says, “This was the Lord’s doing.” We cannot overlook that! One of the saddest teachings over the last 2,000 years is when people suggest that the Jewish leadership put Jesus to death, and therefore deserve his wrath. We do not fully understand how it was God’s doing, but it was. We must understand that when Jesus said, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem … How often I wanted to gather your children together … but you were not willing!” (Matt 23:37), He was not talking about the average Joes. In fact, they received him. 

National Restoration When the “Builders” Welcome Jesus 

After the ascension of Jesus, Peter said to his brethren, “I know that you did it [killed Jesus] in ignorance, as did also your rulers” (Acts 3:17). He calls on them to repent so that the times of refreshing may come. 

“… Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that He may send Jesus Christ” (Acts 3:19–20).  

The phrase “times of refreshing” implies relief from difficult, distressful, or burdensome circumstances. And according to the New English Translation Bible syntactical notes: it is generally regarded as a reference to the ushering in of the Messianic Age.  

Peter followed this up by saying about Jesus, “Whom heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things” (Acts 3:21). In other words, repent, be converted so Jesus may come, but until then, heaven will receive him until the right time.  

The strong implication is if you, (Israel, Jerusalem) will repent, (even in Peter’s day), then Jesus would come, which is exactly what Jesus was saying, “Until you repent and until you welcome me in the name of Yehovah, you’re not going to see me again, but when you do repent, then you’ll see me.” If this―then that.  

Peter was echoing Yeshua’s prophecy, “you shall see Me no more …” [And he says] You must obey him in everything he tells you,” in Acts 3:22.  

Peter “spoke to the rulers, the elders and the scribes as well as the high priest, Caiaphas, John, and Alexander …” (Acts 4:6) who were attempting to quell the message: 

“Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, ‘Rulers of the people and elders of Israel’ (Acts 4:8)… ‘Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead… (Acts 4:10) is the stone which was rejected by you builders which has become the chief cornerstone (Acts 4:11) nor is there salvation [Yeshuah] in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).  

He took that passage from Psalm 118, and of course, from Jesus’ teachings. 

“The LORD is my strength and song, and He has become my salvation [Yeshuah]” (Ps 118:14). “I will praise You, for You have answered me, and have become my salvation [Yeshuah]” (Ps 118:21). 

 Peter is saying, “You leaders of Jerusalem are the builders, and you rejected Jesus, the chief cornerstone.” Peter makes it clear that salvation [Hebrew: Yeshua] is only found in Yeshua-Jesus. Therefore, Peter was saying there would be no national restoration until the builders, that is, the leaders of Jerusalem, welcome Him in the name of the Lord.  

Greed blinded the leadership from seeing what was right in front of them. It is such a sad testimony; how often we are blinded by greed for power, fame, or for something we do not have. The leaders knew Yeshua was doing miracles that were well attested. They said, we cannot deny it. We cannot deny that people are being healed, but we are still not going to believe.  

For Jesus to come back, what must happen? The national leadership, the seat of authority now residing in Jerusalem, must repent. They are the ones that must make this call. Even though many believers around the world and throughout the ages (citizens of the commonwealth of Israel) have prayed “Lord come back.” On this matter, it requires the leaders who sit in that seat of authority to issue a national decree in Jerusalem that will welcome Him back in the name of the Lord, just as Jesus said.