Home Articles Hebrew Calendar Contact us

The Times of the Gentiles

What did Yahusha mean when He spoke of

 “The Times of the Gentiles”

Is this the Last Chance to get it right?

Yahusha said “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the House of Yisrael”

The Messiah Yahusha spoke about “the times of the gentiles” and Daniel alluded to it in Daniel 9: 27. What does it mean and what is its significance for the world today?

We will answer those questions in this study, but briefly it is dealing with the punishment time for the ten tribes of Yisrael because of their idolatry and disobedience to Yahwah’s Torah or instructions.

We will look at the word ‘gentile’ first and find that it is not possible to arrive at the meaning of the word from the Hebrew ‘goyim’ or the Greek ‘ethnos’, as they both apply to all people who are not Yehudim (Jewish),

One meaning is that they are Ephraimites or any person who comes from the ten tribes other than Yahudah and Binyamin, or ‘nations’ as applied to the ten tribes.

The other meaning is heathen - Shemite, Hamite, Assyrian, Arab, Canaanite etc.

There is no distinction made in the Hebrew or Greek in defining the word gentile.

You can only arrive at the real meaning from the context in which it is written.

For instance, in Luke 21: 24 Yahusha said to His disciples,

“And Yerushalayim shall be trampled underfoot by the gentiles until the times of the gentiles are fulfilled”. It must be paraphrased as-

“And Yerushalayim shall be trampled underfoot by heathens, until the punishment of Ephraim, the ten tribes is complete”.

There are two distinct meanings for the word ‘gentiles’,

  1. One meaning being all of the ten tribes of Yisrael who are not Yehudim, known collectively as Ephraim after the time of Solomon.
  2. And the other being all the heathen people outside of the chosen people of Yahuah.

Also in Matthew 4: 15, 16 Yahusha said “Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way of the sea, beyond the Yarden, Galilee of the gentiles, the people who sat in darkness saw a great light, and upon those who sat in the land and shadow of death, light arose to them.

Why would He have called these people who are obviously Ephraim, the ten tribes, gentiles? He certainly would not have made such a mistake! This comes about from the western-gentile-christian thinking of the translators of the scriptures, who Yahuah speaks of in Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 9: 16. “For the leaders of this people lead them astray, and those who are guided by them are swallowed up”.

The Matthew scripture is a quote from the prophecy of Yeshayahu where the word ‘gentile’ is not used, but is ‘nations’. The tribes of Yisrael were known as nations. That whole chapter of Yeshayahu 9 deals with Ephraim and in verse 6 he prophesies of the coming of the Messiah -

“For a child shall be born unto us, a Son shall be given unto us, and the rule is on His shoulder. And His name is called Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty El, the Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

In Matthew 15: 24  Yahusha said “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the House of Yisrael”

These are the people to whom He primarily came to minister. Notice that He did not say that He was sent to minister to the gentiles.

These lost sheep today are to be found throughout the most provision blessed countries of the world, for example Great Britain, Northern Europe, North America, Australia and New Zealand.

Yehezqel (Ezekiel) 37: 16, 17 “And you son of man, take a stick for yourself and write on it, ‘For Yahudah and for the children of Yisrael his companions.’  Then take another stick and write on it, ‘For Yoseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Yisrael, his companions,’ “Then bring them together for yourself into one stick, and they shall become one in your hand.”

This prophecy is referring to “the times of the gentiles”, the conclusion of the punishment of Ephraim, the ten tribes.

Luke 21: 27, 28 “And then they shall see the Son of Adam coming in a cloud with power and much esteem. And when these matters begin to take place, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near”.

After Yahuah gave the people plenty of opportunity to obey His instructions, most of them fell again and again into idolatry and disobedience resulting in His warnings to them through Moses in the following verses.

Wayyiqra (Leviticus) 26: 13 - 15 I am Yahuah your Elohim, Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from being their slaves. And I have broken the bars of your yoke and made you walk upright. But if you do not obey Me, and do not do all these commands, and if you reject My laws, or if your being loathes My right-rulings, so that you do not do all My commands, but break My covenant

16, 18 I also do this to you: And I shall appoint sudden alarm over you, wasting disease and inflammation, destroying the eyes, and consuming the life. And you shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it. And I shall set My face against you, and you shall be smitten before your enemies. And those who hate you shall rule over you and you shall flee when no one pursues you. And after this, if you do not obey Me, then I shall punish you seven times more for your sins.

19 - 21 And I shall break the pride of your power, and shall make your heavens like iron and your earth like bronze. And your strength shall be spent in vain and your land not yield its crops, nor the trees of the land yield their fruit. And if you walk contrary to Me, and refuse to obey Me, I shall bring on you seven times more plagues according to your sins,

22 - 24 and send wild beasts among you, which shall bereave you of your children. And I shall cut off your livestock and make you few in number, and your highways shall be deserted.  And if you are not instructed by Me by these, but walk contrary to Me, then I also shall walk contrary to you, and I Myself shall smite you seven times for your sins.

25 - 28 And I shall bring against you a sword executing the vengeance of My covenant, and you shall gather together in your cities, and I shall send pestilence among you, and you shall be given into the hand of the enemy. When I have cut off your supply of bread ten women shall bake your bread in one oven and they shall bring back to you your bread by weight, and you shall eat and not be satisfied. And if in spite of this, you do not obey me but walk contrary to me, then I shall walk contrary to you in wrath. And I Myself shall punish you seven times for your sins.”

Verse 38 “And you shall perish among the gentiles and the land of your enemies shall eat you up”.

Yehezqel (Ezekiel) 4: 4  was told by Yahuah in c.595 BCE “Lie on your left side and you shall put the crookedness of the house of Yisrael on it. (Yisrael here refers to Ephraim, which is the collective name for the ten tribes)  As many days as you lie on it you shall bear their crookedness. For I Myself have laid on you the years of their crookedness according to the number of the days, 390 days. And you shall bear the crookedness of the house of Yisrael.”

We see from these scripture quotes that the period of punishment to Ephraim is 390 years but Yahuah has told Moses that this time will be multiplied seven times if the people did not repent of their wickedness and idolatry and rejection of the Torah.

These are the people of whom Yahusha and Sha’ul were speaking after their 2730 years of punishment would come to a conclusion. This long period of punishment could have ended about the year 2009 according to my calculations, and after that time great events are prophesied to happen, including a remnant returning to the right-rulings of Yahuah, to His Torah instructions, that is by the houses of Ephraim and Yahudah becoming reunited as the whole house of Yisrael. Yehezqel prophesies of this wonderful reuniting in these verses.

When we multiply 390 x 7 it gives 2730 years of punishment for Ephraim.

2 Melakim (Kings) 17: 6 In the ninth year of Hoshea (the last of the Ephraimite kings), the sovereign of  Assyria captured Samaria and exiled Yisrael (the ten tribes) to Assyria, and settled them in Halah and Habor, the River of Gozan, and in the cities of the Medes.

It is interesting that the Assyrians are descended from Shem, and the Medes are descended from Yapheth, both of them being sons of Noah.

It has been shown historically that this captivity of the ten tribes took place in the year 722 BCE, the final year of the reign of king Hoshea, the last of the Ephraimite kings. We also know that after they had been in captivity in Assyria for some time, most of them dispersed into Northern Europe and the British Isles where they settled for about 2300 years, then some of them migrated to North America, Australia and New Zealand where we remain even to this day in these provision blessed lands.

If we add 2730 years to 722 BCE we arrive at 2009, adding one year because there is no year zero.

Now we will see what Yahusha said about this event -

Luke 21: 7 - 11 And the disciples asked Him saying, “Teacher, but when shall this be? And what is the sign when this is about to take place?” And He said, “See that you are not led astray, for many shall come in My Name, saying ‘I am’, and ‘the time is near’, then do not go after them. “But when you hear of fightings and unrests, do not be alarmed for these have to take place first, but the end is not immediately.” Then He said to them, “Nation shall rise against nation, and reign against reign. And there shall be great earthquakes in various places, and scarcities of food and deadly diseases. And there shall be horrors, and great signs from heaven.

12  - 16 “But before all this, they shall lay their hands on you and persecute you, delivering you up to the congregations and prisons, and be brought before sovereigns and rulers for My Name’s sake and it shall turn out to you for a witness. Therefore, resolve in your hearts not to premeditate on what to answer. For I shall give you a mouth and wisdom which all your adversaries shall not be able to refute or resist. And you shall also be betrayed by parents and brothers and relatives and friends. And some of you shall be put to death.

17 - 21 And you shall be hated by all because of My Name. But not a hair of your head shall be lost at all. Possess your lives by your endurance! And when you see Yerushalayim surrounded by armies, then know that its laying waste is near. Then let those in Yahudah flee to the mountains, and let those that are in the midst of her go out, and let not those that are in the fields enter her.

22 - 24 Because these are the days of vengeance, to fulfil all that have been written. And woe to those who are pregnant and to those who are nursing children in those days! For there shall be great distress in the earth and wrath upon these people. And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and be led away captive into all nations. And Yerushalayim shall be trampled underfoot by the gentiles until the times of the gentiles are filled.

As we have shown earlier in this study, it must be paraphrased as-

And Yerushalayim shall be trampled underfoot by heathens until the punishment of Ephraim, the ten tribes is complete.

These prophecies of Yahusha have been fulfilled over the years, or are being fulfilled  even to this very day.

25 - 28 And there shall be signs in the sun, moon and stars, and on the earth anxiety of nations, in bewilderment at the roaring of the sea and agitation, men fainting from fear and the expectation of what is coming on the earth, for the powers of the heavens shall be shaken, and then they shall see the Son of Adam coming in a cloud with power and much esteem.  And when these matters begin to take place, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.”

We know from scripture that all of the twelve tribes of Yisrael were the “natural olive tree” during the time of Moses when the instructions of Yahuah to all His people were given from Mount Sinai in Arabia, and later on as well. They all agreed to follow his Word and in so doing they became betrothed to Him.

However later, about 930 BCE under King Yarob’am, the ten tribes known as Ephraim became completely idolatrous and disobedient to Yahuah, and separated from the other two tribes known as Yahudah. The people of the ten tribes were captured and transported to the gentile heathen Shemite nation of Assyria when they refused to repent of their idolatry and disobedience to their Creator, thus annulling His marriage covenant with them.

The remnant of all twelve tribes will once again be united as Yisrael, the natural olive tree, when we will be obeying His Torah, His instructions, thus fulfilling Yehezqel’s prophecy and restoring the marriage vows that had been broken. (See our article “Who are the Gentiles”)

This momentous event could take place at any time soon as we saw from the dates earlier in this study.

“The deliverer shall come out of Zion,

 and He shall turn away wickedness from Ya’aqob,

 and this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins.”

Neville Shaw


Back to Articles HOME