The Times and Fullness of the Gentiles

Last Updated: 04/19/2023 22:18    | Print This Page | |

This page is to cover why I believe the “times of the Gentiles” is different from the “fulness of the Gentiles.”

Times of the Gentiles

This term, mentioned just once in scripture, seems focused on a timeframe of Jerusalem to not be an exclusively Israeli city.

Luke 21:20-26
And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto. For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled. But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people. And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.

In the Gospel’s, Matthew and Mark seem to differ in some interesting ways from the depiction of Luke. I go into more detail on that on the Olivet Discourse page. To the point, I believe Luke's account diverges at a particular point to warn the believers back in the first century about the impending destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D.

The times of the Gentiles speaks to the time from when Israel both killed and is led away captive into all nations. At the siege of Jerusalem in 70 A.D., many Jews were killed and I'm sure many who took Yeshua seriously fled to the mountains when the Roman army began the siege of Jersualem. From that time Jerusalem was not a primarily Jewish city and even today after coming back into the land, the city is divided.

It ends when Jerusalem is no more trodden down by the Gentiles. In the view of a Jewish antichrist, something Chris White goes into great detail on in his book False Christ | Will the Antichrist Claim to Be the Jewish Messiah? I won't go into all the detail, but the book is free online and I highly recommend it. The idea is that the man of sin will present himself with Old Testament prophecies to back his case that he is the conquering Messiah, defeating the enemies of Israel.

If this is the case, the religious furvor in Jerusalem to rebuild the temple and bring Jerusalem back to the state it was in before will be very high. It may be that even the Ark of the Covenant is rediscovered and other elements that will only increase that. Ultimately as all the plans are laid Jerusalem would once more be a Jewish city with the intensity of it's protection and defense seen in 70 A.D. and the man that made it all happen will stand in the rebuilt temple and declare Himself to be God.

John 5:43
I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.

Fullness of the Gentiles

The fullness of the Gentiles is more focused on a waking of at least some of the nation of Israel to recognition of Yeshua as the Messiah. It is also only specifially mentioned as the “fulness of the Gentiles” one place in scripture, but the idea is throughout Romans 11 and elsewhere.

Romans 11:25
For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.

This is a reference to the blindness of Israel, in place until the fullness of the Gentiles. When were they blinded? About the same time at the triumphal entry, Luke 19:41-44, and later when Yeshua was chastising the hypocricy Scribes and Pharisees. Matthew 23:37-39 They will be un-blinded when the fullness of the Gentiles is come in.

I believe this is speaking to those Gentiles that will obey His Word and follow Yeshua. I believe the harpazo of the bride of Christ marks the fullness of the Gentiles. That is not to say that the natural branches (Jews) won't be part of the catching away, but the focus on the Gentiles will be over. There is a point when the body of Christ (the bride) has reached it’s fullness. We know this because God shuts the door to the marriage and no more are added to the bride after the marriage. This is dealt with in Matthew 25:1-13, the kingdom parable of the 10 virgins.

So we know the “times of the Gentiles” is different from the “fulness of the Gentiles” because the triumphal entry, when Israel was blinded was 40 years before the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 A.D. and the times of the Gentiles is focused on Gentiles being part of Jerusalem.

These started at different times and are focused on different things so they must speak to two different things.