There are Two main cities in Israel, but they could hardly be more different. Jerusalem is still centred on the old walled city: historical, Palestinian/Israeli, choked with tourists, so ‘religious’ that parts virtually shut down for the Sabbath, and the orthodox Jews make their presence felt with their black hats, ringlets and public praying – reminiscent of the Pharisees of Jesus Christ’s day.
Tel Aviv is humming. Centred on the beach. The Sabbath sees the streets almost empty, but the beach is crowded with sun worshippers, an endless parade of hedonistic, sun bronzed Israelis, macho, muscled IDF soldiers, and still feminine girls, despite their gun toting service in the army for three years. There is no Sabbath on the beach. The musak never stops and it seems half the population is racing back and forth on electric scooters and bikes, some carrying two or three people at highly dangerous speeds.
It used to be that there were 3 kinds of Israelis. The orthodox religious black hats, the liberal religious Jews, and the secular Jews with no religion. Now we are told that a fourth group is emerging, combining a liberal, free and easy approach with a nationalistic bent, almost like the state has replaced their religion, maybe due to their experience in their army. This seemed more evident in Tel Aviv.
In fact, neither city appeals. Christ was rejected in Jerusalem, Matthew 23:37, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!”, and Tel Aviv has never known Him.
The Jews have been replaced as God’s chosen people by Spirit Begotten Christians of all races – Spiritual Israelites, Galatians 3:28, ‘There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.’ They are the ones who will assist Christ in the reconstruction of both cities, after the coming Great Tribulation, and in their rule, after Christ’s return, in the future Kingdom of God.