Israel as Proof of God’s Existence
Israel in Bible Prophecy
In his book, I Never Thought I Would See the Day, David Jeremiah devotes an entire chapter to the increasingly vehement assault of Atheism.
He talks about how Atheists have become bolder and more blatant and vicious in their denials of God, their attacks on Christianity, and their claims that Jesus was simply either a misguided man or a myth.
He says they have become characterized by their arrogance and their anger. As evidence of their arrogance, he points out that in their literature today, Atheists refer to themselves as “The Brights,” and they dismiss believers as “The Dims.”
As an example of their anger, Jeremiah quotes a sentence taken from the book, The Divine Delusion, written by Richard Dawkins, one of Atheism’s most vocal spokesmen:
The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.
This rising anger among Atheists, and their increasingly virulent attacks on God and Jesus is what prompted me to write a book called Jesus: The Lamb & The Lion. It is a study of Jesus in Bible prophecy and His fulfillment of it, proving that He really was who He claimed to be — namely, God in the flesh.
There is a certain sense in which these relentless attacks on God by the Atheists are downright amusing. That’s because I find it ironical that the very people who deny God’s existence are the very ones who are so obsessed with Him!
Can God’s Existence Be Proved?
When I was growing up in the Church, I was repeatedly told that the existence of God cannot be proved. Rather, I was told it must be accepted by blind faith.
There is no doubt that to accept something that cannot be seen requires faith. But an acceptance of God’s existence does not require blind faith, because the evidence of His existence is simply overwhelming.
Christian philosophers and theologians have developed many arguments for the existence of God, and they have given those arguments typical philosophical names, like:
- The Ontological Argument
- The Cosmological Argument
- The Teleological Argument
But I want to mention only three proofs of the existence of God — three that are down-to-earth and easy to understand, three that I think are very convincing. They are:
- Changed Lives
- Design in Nature, and
- Israel in Bible Prophecy
With regard to changed lives, I have in mind the way in which lives have been radically changed throughout history when they came in contact with God and put their faith in Him.
Consider, for example the lives of Abraham and Paul. Abraham was an idolater and Paul was an accomplice to murder when their lives were totally transformed when they encountered God and placed their faith in Him. And the Bible is full of many other examples.
An Amazing Last Will and Testament
I encountered an example in September of 2012 when I received a letter from a law firm in Chicago informing me that Lamb & Lion Ministries had been named as a beneficiary in a will.
A copy of the will was enclosed with the letter. It began by stating that the testator had no living relatives. He then specified that he wanted gifts of $30,000 each to be given to three friends whom he named. Next, he stated that he wanted $2,500 to be spent on a party in his honor at a local bar, with drinks on the house!
It was at that point that I began to wonder how in the world our ministry could possibly be one of his beneficiaries!
My puzzlement became even greater when I turned to the next page. It contained a list of the groups who were to receive the remainder of his estate. Several Catholic charities were mentioned, followed by a long list of liberal organizations, from the ACLU to a Harvard Embryo Research Center.
At that point, I was really perplexed at how we could possibly be named in such a last will and testament.
Then, I turned the page — and there was a new will, dated three years later.
It began the same way, with gifts to the same three friends. But from that point on, the will was radically different. For, you see, the next statement was a repudiation of the party at the bar. “Just forget about it,” he wrote.
Then came the listing of the beneficiaries. There were only three — two Messianic ministries and our ministry.
I immediately realized that I was holding in my hands absolute evidence of the existence of God and His miracle working power. It was obvious that during the three years between the two wills, this man had met Jesus, and his life and values had been totally transformed.
That was not the first time I had seen such a radical impact of God on a life. Let me share with you another example. I have in mind a man named Jack Hollingsworth who lived on the streets as a homeless alcoholic for 20 years.
In 1988 he wandered into a detox center in Lexington, Kentucky where he was confronted by a tough little lady named Sally. When he started trying to con her, she confronted him with his drunkenness and told him, “I declare to you in the name of Jesus that you will never be able to get drunk again.” Jack laughed and wrote her off as nuts.
After all, he was a professional drunk, and he could get drunk any time he desired. But to his amazement, he discovered that he could no longer even get a buzz on, no matter how much he drank! Finally, he went back and asked Sally to tell him about Jesus. She did, and Jack put his faith in Him as his Lord and Savior.
His life was totally transformed, as you can see in these photographs.
Jack was instantly delivered from alcoholism. He and Sally later married, and they formed a ministry called Acts 29. And ever since 1993 they have been on the road together, with Jack teaching, preaching and singing. And in the process, Jack became the featured singer on our TV program.
What greater proof do you need that God exists?
But Atheists renounce such proof out of hand by declaring it to be “too subjective.” “Show me something objective and tangible,” they declare.
Design in Nature
That challenge brings me to my second proof of God’s existence: Design in Nature.
The Bible itself points us to this evidence:
1) The heavens are telling of the glory of God;
And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.
2) Day to day pours forth speech,
And night to night reveals knowledge.
In other words, the universe we exist in, and the planet that serves as our home, are both so complex and beautiful in their design that they literally shout the existence of a Designer.
Consider the Earth. Its size is perfect. If it were smaller, an atmosphere would be impossible, like the planet Mercury. If the Earth were larger, its atmosphere would contain free hydrogen, like Jupiter. Earth is the only known planet with an atmosphere composed of the right mixture of gases to sustain life.
Likewise, the Earth is located at precisely the right distance from the sun. If it were farther away, we would freeze. If it were closer, we would burn up.
The Earth’s moon is the perfect size and distance from the Earth for its gravitational pull to move the oceans and keep them from stagnating, while preventing them from spilling across the continents.
The Earth is the only object in the universe that we know of that contains water — an essential ingredient for life. And the Earth has a built in hydrological system whereby water evaporates from the oceans, leaving behind the salt content, and then is distributed as rainfall over the continents.
Design applies as well to the complexity of the human brain and the human eye — and to the complexity and beauty of animal and plant life.
Or, consider the fact that in every cell of our bodies there exists a very detailed instruction code that is like a miniature computer program. This DNA code is a three-billion-lettered program that tells each cell how to act. It is like an operational manual.
How could such complex designs be the result of chance? Or, the consequence of a “Big Bang” explosion? How many explosions have you ever heard of that produced order instead of chaos?
Yet, scientists with Ph.D.s piled on top of each other take a look at all this design and declare it to be an “accidental product of evolution.”
To me that’s equivalent to standing in front of Mt. Rushmore and declaring, “Wow! Isn’t it amazing what can be produced accidently by erosion?” If I were to say that in front of a scientist, he would declare me to be a fool. Yet, scientists declare the same nonsense about our planet and the life that exists on it.
It’s no wonder that Ray Comfort gave his book about Atheism the title: You Can Lead a Scientist to Evidence, But You Can’t Make Him Think!
The Bible puts it this way (Psalm 53:1): “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.'”
Fulfilled Bible Prophecy
One of the most decisive evidences of God’s existence can be found in Bible prophecy. I’m speaking of the fact that the Bible is full of hundreds of precise prophecies that have been fulfilled in detail in history.
In fulfilled Bible prophecy we find what I would call “conclusive evidence” that God exists and that the Bible is the Word of God.
Just consider for a moment the fact that no other book in the world contains fulfilled prophecies. There is not a single fulfilled prophecy in the Koran, the Hindu Vedras, the book of Mormon or the nonsensical, obfuscated ramblings of Nostradamus.
In contrast, the Bible contains hundreds of fulfilled prophecies concerning persons, cities, nations and empires.
Take for example the incredible prophecy of Daniel that is recorded in Daniel chapter two. As most of you well know, in that chapter we are told about Daniel interpreting a dream of the Babylonian king, Nebuchadnezzar.
Nebuchadnezzar dreamed of a great statue of a man with a golden head, a chest of silver, thighs of bronze and legs of iron.
Daniel explained that Nebuchadnezzar’s dream represented a succession of world empires, beginning with the Babylonian that was represented by the head of gold. It would be succeeded by the Medo-Persian Empire represented by the chest of silver. Next would come the Grecian Empire represented by the thighs of bronze.
Daniel did not specifically identify the fourth empire, but it was obviously the empire of Rome which followed the Grecian Empire and which split into two parts, represented by the two legs.
As one wag has put it, “Daniel wrote history in advance better than historians have done so after the fact.”
And then, of course, there are the Messianic prophecies that Jesus fulfilled — a total of 109 separate and distinct prophecies.
It has been calculated that the odds of just 8 of those prophecies being fulfilled accidentally in the life of one person are 1 in 10 to the 17th power. That’s the number 1 with 17 zeros after it. So, the odds are one in 100 quadrillion! And that’s beyond the realm of probability.
The scientist who made these calculations was Peter Stoner. He illustrated the meaning of 1 in 1017 by using the state of Texas.
He said to fill the state knee deep with silver dollars. Then fly over and drop out one silver dollar with a check mark on it. Next, let 10,000 bulldozers rampage around the state for ten years, getting the silver dollars mixed up real well. Then, turn a blind-folded man loose in this sea of silver dollars. The odds that the first coin he would pick up would be the one with the check mark on it is 1 in 1017.
Israel in Bible Prophecy
But since Atheists claim the book of Daniel is a fraud that was written long after it claims to be, and since they write off Jesus as either a mythical being or just a man whose disciples conjured up so-called prophecies about Him, let’s consider some Bible prophecies that were written thousands of years ago that have been definitely fulfilled in the modern history of the Jewish people.
These are prophetic fulfillments that cannot be discarded. As one person has put it, they have the thumbprint of God on them.
The first one I would point to is the dispersion of the Jewish people worldwide.
Thirty-four hundred years ago, as the Jewish people prepared to enter their Promised Land after their 40-year journey from Egypt, their leader, Moses, warned them to be faithful to God. He told them that if they were unfaithful, God would place curses upon them, and that if they refused to repent, His ultimate curse would be their expulsion from their homeland and their worldwide dispersion.
58) If you are not careful to observe all the words of this law which are written in this book, to fear this honored and awesome name, the LORD your God,
59) then the LORD will bring extraordinary plagues on you and your descendants, even severe and lasting plagues, and miserable and chronic sicknesses.
60) He will bring back on you all the diseases of Egypt of which you were afraid …
63) It shall come about that … you will be torn from the land where you are entering to possess it.
64) Moreover, the LORD will scatter you among all peoples, from one end of the earth to the other end of the earth; and there you shall serve other gods, wood and stone, which you or your fathers have not known.
In this Scripture passage we have a very precise prophecy with a known date.
Its fulfillment began in 70 AD when God allowed the Romans to destroy the city of Jerusalem and the Jewish Temple because the Jews had rejected their Messiah, Yeshua of Nazareth. The dispersion of the Jews from their homeland was accelerated after the Second Jewish Revolt that lasted from 132 to 136 AD.
By the beginning of the 20th century, there were only 40,000 Jews left in the land of Israel. All the rest had been scattered throughout the world, with Jews existing on every continent. No group of people in all of history had been so widely dispersed.
And so we have a precise prophecy with a precise fulfillment.
The Persecution of the Jews
The second prophecy I would point to is one that said that after their dispersion, the Jews would be persecuted wherever they went. Let’s return to Deuteronomy and pick up reading where we left off:
65) Among those nations [where the Jews will be scattered] you shall find no rest, and there will be no resting place for the sole of your foot; but there the LORD will give you a trembling heart, failing of eyes, and despair of soul.
66) So your life shall hang in doubt before you; and you will be in dread night and day, and shall have no assurance of your life.
67) In the morning you shall say, “Would that it were evening!” And at evening you shall say, “Would that it were morning!” because of the dread of your heart which you dread, and for the sight of your eyes which you will see.
This is a graphic description of exactly what happened to the Jewish people after they were dispersed from their homeland. Everywhere they went, they were harassed, persecuted and targeted for annihilation — a process that climaxed with the Holocaust during World War II when 6 million Jews were exterminated.
Again, we have a precise prophecy with a precise fulfillment.
The Desolation of the Land
The third prophecy I would like to emphasize is one that stated that the Jewish homeland would become a desolation after the Jews were ejected from it. Let’s return to Moses’ words in Deuteronomy, looking this time at chapter 29:
22) Now the generation to come … and the foreigner who comes from a distant land, when they see the plagues of the land and the diseases with which the LORD has afflicted it, will say,
23) “All its land is brimstone and salt, a burning waste, unsown and unproductive, and no grass grows in it, like the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah … which the LORD overthrew in His anger and in His wrath.”
24) All the nations will say, “Why has the LORD done thus to this land? Why this great outburst of anger?”
25) Then men will say, “Because they forsook the covenant of the LORD, the God of their fathers, which He made with them when He brought them out of the land of Egypt.
26) “They went and served other gods and worshiped them, gods whom they have not known and whom He had not allotted to them.
27) “Therefore, the anger of the LORD burned against that land, to bring upon it every curse which is written in this book …
Again, we find a very detailed and graphic prophecy that was spoken 1500 years before it began to be fulfilled when the Jews were forcefully expelled from their land, beginning in 70 AD.
By the beginning of the 20th Century the Jewish homeland was a complete desolation. Nearly all the trees had been cut down. Only 17,000 remained. All the previously cultivated valleys had become malaria-infested swamp lands.
Mark Twain, who visited the land in 1866, described it with these words in his book, Innocents Abroad:
“It is a blistering, naked, treeless land.”
“Of all the lands there are for dismal scenery, I think Palestine must be the prince. It is a hopeless, dreary, heart-broken land.”
“Palestine sits in sackcloth and ashes … It is desolate and unlovely.”
Again, we have a precise prophecy with a precise fulfillment.
The Preservation of the People
The fourth prophecy I would like to single out is the preservation of the Jewish people.
The Hebrew prophets were very precise about this. They made it clear that despite the dispersion of the Jews and their persecution wherever they went, God would supernaturally preserve them as a nation.
Consider this symbolic prophecy of Isaiah who wrote 2,700 years ago, 700 years before the birth of Jesus:
14) But Zion [the Jewish people] said, “The LORD has forsaken me,
And the Lord has forgotten me.”
15) [God responds] “Can a woman forget her nursing child
And have no compassion on the son of her womb?
Even these may forget, but I will not forget you.
16) “Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands …”
Speaking more specifically in literal language, Isaiah wrote these words about the preservation of the Jews:
10) “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
11) “Behold, all those who are angered at you will be shamed and dishonored; those who contend with you will be as nothing and will perish.”
Likewise, the prophet Jeremiah, who wrote 75 years after Isaiah, declared that God would preserve the Jewish people:
“For I am with you,” declares the LORD, “to save you;
For I will destroy completely all the nations where I have scattered you,
Only I will not destroy you completely.
But I will chasten you justly
And will by no means leave you unpunished.”
A more graphic prophecy by Jeremiah concerning the preservation of the Jews can be found in Jeremiah 31:
35) Thus says the LORD,
Who gives the sun for light by day
And the fixed order of the moon and the stars for light by night,
Who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar;
The LORD of hosts is His name:
36) “If this fixed order departs
From before Me,” declares the LORD,
“Then the offspring of Israel also will cease
From being a nation before Me forever.”
37) Thus says the LORD,
“If the heavens above can be measured
And the foundations of the earth searched out below,
Then I will also cast off all the offspring of Israel
For all that they have done,” declares the LORD.
So, when will the Jewish people cease to exist? When the sun stops coming up and going down, when the seasons of the year cease to come, and only after all the heavens and the depths of the oceans have been explored. In short, the Jewish people are here to stay.
Do I need to inform you that these prophecies have been fulfilled? Despite their dispersion, their persecution and the murderous pogroms leading up to the Holocaust, 6 million Jews live in Israel today, with another 7 million in other countries.
One of my spiritual mentors when I was in my 20’s was a man named Carl Ketcherside. I heard him in a question and answer session one time when he was asked, “What do you think is the greatest evidence that the Bible came from God?”
His answer: “The Yellow Pages of the phone book.”
When the questioner asked what he meant, Carl said, “Look at the names of the banks, the names of the department stores, the names of lawyers and doctors and accountants. You will see one Jewish name after another. God promised He would preserve the Jewish people, and He has.”
It’s another example of precise prophecies being precisely fulfilled.
The Regathering of the Jewish People
The fifth prophecy I would point to is the one that states that the Jewish people will one day be regathered from their worldwide dispersion back to their homeland.
This is one of the most prolific prophecies in the Hebrew Scriptures, repeated over and over again. For example, consider the words of Isaiah which were written 700 years before the time of Jesus:
11) Then it will happen on that day that the Lord
Will again recover the second time with His hand
The remnant of His people, who will remain,
From Assyria, Egypt, Pathros, Cush, Elam, Shinar, Hamath,
And from the islands of the sea.
12) And He will lift up a standard for the nations
And assemble the banished ones of Israel,
And will gather the dispersed of Judah
From the four corners of the earth.
This great regathering began 2,600 years later in the 1890s. It was sparked by a booklet which was written by Theodor Herzl. He advocated that the time had come for the Jewish people to return to their homeland.
The booklet captured the imagination of Jews worldwide, and they began to return to their homeland, which was then called Palestine. At that time there were only 40,000 Jews in the land.
The gradual return became an overwhelming surge after World War II, and today over 6 million Jews have returned to their homeland.
Once again, we have a precise prophecy with a precise fulfillment.
And Jeremiah emphasizes this fulfillment in a startling statement:
14) “Therefore behold, days are coming,” declares the LORD, “when it will no longer be said, ‘As the LORD lives, who brought up the sons of Israel out of the land of Egypt,’
15) but, ‘As the LORD lives, who brought up the sons of Israel from the land of the north and from all the countries where He had banished them.’ For I will restore them to their own land which I gave to their fathers.”
This is an incredible statement. Jeremiah is saying here that one day the Jewish people will look back on the history of their nation and will conclude that the greatest miracle in their history was their regathering from the four corners of the world — a miracle greater than their deliverance from Egyptian captivity!
The Reoccupation of Jerusalem
The sixth prophecy I want to identify is the one that states that when the Jewish people return to their homeland, they will reoccupy the city of Jerusalem, the ancient capital of their nation.
The Jews were dispossessed of their beloved capital city when the Romans destroyed it in 70 AD and took them into captivity. They briefly reoccupied the city during the Second Jewish Revolt that began in 132 AD, but after that, the city was never under their control again for century after century. Even after they declared the re-establishment of their state in 1948, they were unable to conquer the city in the War of Independence that followed.
But Bible prophecies had made it plain that the day would come when the city would be theirs once again. The prophet Zechariah spoke of that time:
4) Thus says the LORD of hosts, “Old men and old women will again sit in the streets of Jerusalem, each man with his staff in his hand because of age.
5) “And the streets of the city will be filled with boys and girls playing in its streets …”
7) Thus says the LORD of hosts, “Behold, I am going to save My people from the land of the east and from the land of the west;
8) “and I will bring them back and they will live in the midst of Jerusalem; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God in truth and righteousness.”
These words were written 500 years before the time of Jesus, and they were written after the Jews had returned from Babylonian captivity and had resettled themselves in Jerusalem. So, this is a prophecy about a future resettlement in the city.
Again, in the 12th chapter of Zechariah, the prophet spoke of the Jews being back in the city of Jerusalem in the end times:
2) “Behold, I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that causes reeling to all the peoples around; and when the siege is against Jerusalem, it will also be against Judah.
3) “It will come about in that day that I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples; all who lift it will be severely injured. And all the nations of the earth will be gathered against it.”
Jesus Himself affirmed this prophecy in about 30 AD when He said:
“… and they [the Jewish people] will fall by the edge of the sword, and will be led captive into all the nations; and Jerusalem will be trampled under foot by the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled.”
In other words, Jesus said the Jews would be taken into captivity to all the nations of the world and Jerusalem would remain under Gentile control until the time comes for the domination of the Gentiles to end.
The first step in the fulfillment of this prophecy came on June 7, 1967 at the end of the Six Day War when the Jews conquered the city of Jerusalem and reoccupied it with sovereignty over it, for the first time in 1,897 years.
It is no wonder that on that day, the chief rabbi of the Israeli army, Rabbi Shlomo Goren, came to the Western Wall, blew a shofar, and then proclaimed: “We have taken the City of God. We are entering the Messianic era for the Jewish people.”
He said that because he knew that the prophecies say that when the Jews are back in their land and in their city, the Messiah will come.
Once again, we have precise prophecies being precisely fulfilled.
The Reclamation of the Land
The seventh and final prophecy I would like to highlight is the reclamation of the land. As I have already pointed out, the land became a desolation when the Jews were dispersed from it, in fulfillment of Bible prophecy. But the Bible also contains prophecies about what will happen to the land when the Jews return. Here’s one from Ezekiel:
Ezekiel 36:24 & 33-35
24) “For I will take you from the nations, gather you from all the lands and bring you into your own land …”
33) Thus says the Lord GOD, “… I will cause the cities to be inhabited, and the waste places will be rebuilt.
34) “The desolate land will be cultivated instead of being a desolation in the sight of everyone who passes by.
35) “They will say, ‘This desolate land has become like the garden of Eden; and the waste, desolate and ruined cities are fortified and inhabited.'”
In other words, God promised that when the Jews returned to the land, it would be reclaimed from being a wasteland and would become like the Garden of Eden.
And that is exactly what has happened. The swamps were drained. Trees were planted. Water was conserved and channeled carefully to the agricultural regions.
The result was that by 1950 the land had been reclaimed, and by the end of the 20th Century, Israel had become the bread basket of the Middle East, growing every kind of crop imaginable.
During the 20th Century the Jews planted 250 million trees, and Israel ended the century as the only nation in the world with more trees than at the beginning of the century.
Coincidence or Providence?
I could continue by giving you examples of many other specific prophecies concerning the Jewish people that have been precisely fulfilled in history, but I think these seven should be sufficient.
So, what are you going to do with this evidence? Dismiss it as a coincidence? Or, recognize it for what it is — and that is proof positive that God exists, that He has supernatural knowledge of the future, that He has the wisdom to proclaim the future, and He has the power to see to it that what He proclaims comes true.
God Himself points to fulfilled prophecy as proof of His existence:
9) “… For I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is no one like Me,
10) “Declaring the end from the beginning,
And from ancient times things which have not been done,
Saying, ‘My purpose will be established,
And I will accomplish all My good pleasure,’
11) “Calling a bird of prey from the east,
The man of My purpose from a far country.
Truly I have spoken; truly I will bring it to pass.
I have planned it, surely I will do it.”
The Atheist’s Problem
Any fair-minded person should be willing to admit that the Jews in Bible prophecy are absolute proof of God’s existence.
The problem the Atheist has in accepting the existence of God is that he knows the moment he acknowledges God’s existence, it will mean that he is responsible to God, and the Atheist does not want to be responsible to anyone except himself.
C.S. Lewis summed up the Atheist’s problem very well when he wrote: “An Atheist cannot find God for the same reason that a burglar cannot find a policeman.”
Think about that profound statement for a moment. Why can’t a burglar find a policeman? Because he doesn’t want to find one!
Thus, in Jeremiah 29:13 we find God saying, “You will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.”
The attitude of Mankind today is summed up in Romans 1 where it says that:
18) [Men] suppress the truth in unrighteousness,
19) because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them.
20) For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.
21) For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
22) Professing to be wise, they became fools,
23) and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.
24) Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them.
25) For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
What more can be said? God exists. He reigns, and He has the wisdom and power to orchestrate all the evil of Man and Satan to the triumph of His Son.
And thus, I cry out from the depths of my heart, “Maranatha! Maranatha! Maranatha! Come quickly, Lord Jesus!”