Why do ultra conservative Christians see conflict in Palestine as a sign of an approaching Armageddon leading to the salvation of all Jews? Why do liberals see Israel defense of its sovereignty as a violation of Palestinian human rights?
You may have heard conservative Christian preachers preaching how the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948 is the fulfillment of biblical prophecy and the attacks on present-day Jerusalem is a sign of Christ’s soon coming. They say those who advocate a view that supports a two-state solution with Jerusalem not being an exclusive city of Israel will bring the wrath of God and judgment upon themselves. States who support or promote an anti-Israeli agenda will suffer and lose prominence in the world. This loss of prominence may be economical, political, militarily, etc. and will be as a consequence for their forsaking the Jewish State.
It is said that this is the fulfillment of biblical prophecy and the states that oppose Israel represent nations predicted in the scriptures who will attack Israel in the last days (end times) prior to Christ’s return. Scripture is cited and reference as the identifier of the nations (kingdoms) who oppose Israel. Text from the book of Revelation and the book of Daniel are interpreted as speaking of a ten-nation alliance as the enemies of Israel that God judges in the last days.
Revelation and Daniel both wrote about a beast with ten horns and the beast and the horns represent kingdoms and governments. However, a careful study of the beast with ten horns in the book of Revelation and the beast with ten horns in the book of Daniel reveals that these horns do not represent the same kingdoms. What I found to be true is that the horns in Revelation have a similar characteristic to the prophetic statue of Daniel 2. For those of you who are not familiar with the statue from the dream of Nebuchadnezzar, Daniel revealed that the statue represented four kingdoms. The final power was represented by iron legs and ten toes partly of iron and of clay. The toes lack the stability in strength by composition (being partly iron and partly clay) of the legs. That is, they do not endure as the legs The ten toes are not firmly established or of a temporary nature. Such is also the case of the ten horns on the beast of Revelation in that the book says they continue for one hour and give their power to the beast.
“Rev 17:12 And the ten horns which thou sawest are ten kings, which have received no kingdom as yet; but receive power as kings one hour with the beast. “
“Dan 2:42 And as the toes of the feet were part of iron, and part of clay, so the kingdom shall be partly strong, and partly broken. Dan 2:43 And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay, they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay. ”
The key to understanding the meaning of the prophecies of Revelation and Daniel is a familiarity with related scripture and understand all scripture relate to Christ. The other side of the coin are those who say that Israel is committing genocide against the Palestinian people in their assaults on Hamas. They accuse Israel of human rights violations and war crimes. Never mind that Israel is responding to attacks against her, and her attacks are aimed at defending herself and is not an act of aggression. Some say that Israel is no longer the chosen of God because she rejected Christ. Then there are those of us who say that the 1948 establishment of the Jewish state is a fulfillment of prophecy. We think this because we are interpreting scripture from a literal natural perspective. The specific prophecy in question is Isaiah 66:8.
“Isa_66:8 Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children.”
Now I am going to make a simple statement here which I hope to elaborate more in posts to follow. I also covered this topic in a writing called “The Key”. This statement is that the establishment of Israel in 1948 is not the fulfillment of Isaiah 66:8. This scripture is about True Jerusalem and True Israel born from above. True Israel is born through and in Christ. A nation of believers was born through Christ’s death on the cross being cleansed by his blood and the scripture is a prophecy about the crucifixion. The day that Christ died all believers were born children of God for the penalty of sin was paid. The travail of Zion in the prophecy is the travail of Christ for Zion is fulfilled in him and those who trust in him became children of God. Paul was quick to point this out:
“Gal 4:26 But Jerusalem which is above is free, which is the mother of us all. Gal 4:27 For it is written, Rejoice, thou barren that bearest not; break forth and cry, thou that travailest not: for the desolate hath many more children than she which hath a husband. “
Now this is the conclusion of the matter: God is both the God of the Jews (Israelis) and the Palestinian. That is he is God of both Jew and Gentile that believes. He is not a respecter of persons. Since this is true then the following questions emerge. Should we support Israel in its defense of its homeland? Should we support a Palestinian state? The answer to the first question is a definite yes. Here’s why. It is true the nation of Israel rejects Christ and as a consequence they are not his. But also true they are his witness and the root of the faith. More specifically the messianic Jew is the root of the faith. For the sake of the messianic (believing Jew) and for our sake (the gentiles who believe) Israel as a nation must be preserved and protected by God.
This is why God brought them back in 1948. However, God has also preserved the gentile nations for the same reason he preserved the Jewish nation and that is so that he can collect his elect from among them. Also, Satan knows the best way to kill a tree is to kill its roots. Kill the root and you can easily kill the tree. The forces are darkness would destroy the Jewish nation first, that is “push them into the sea” as one of Israel enemies says. If they could destroy the Jewish nation, who do you think would be next? Let me say it loud and clear for you: CHRISTIANS!!!
If the Jew could be eliminated the Christian faith would quickly be reduced to a thing of fable. There are already people (the Dan Browns of this world) writing fables about Christ (The Davinci Code). Should the Jewish nation be destroyed men would emerge and write huge volumes of books proposing that the Jewish people never existed in an effort to destroy the foundation of the Christian faith. So the natural Jew is preserved for the sake of the true Jew (born in Christ). We are his name’s sake.
“Isa_48:9 For my name’s sake will I defer mine anger, and for my praise will I refrain for thee, that I cut thee not off. “
But when Christ comes all who have not believed in him whether they be Jew or Gentile will be cut off. Until that time, both are preserved according to his purpose. Incidentally there is a teaching that when Christ comes he will establish the Jewish nation as his throne (although they to this day have not believed on him). God willing I will write on this in future posts. This interpretation is based on the flesh that is he who is a Jew by flesh and blood and is not scriptural from a New Testament perspective.
Now to the question should we support a Palestinian state? To address that question we need to determine who wants a Palestinian state? Is it the Palestinian people? Or is it a group of radical Islamists who under the guise of Liberty are not truly interested in a two-state solution? According to their rhetoric they appear to be interested in a one-state solution. That is an Islamic state that could eventually replace or eliminate Israel. The Palestinian people seem to only want equal treatment and opportunity under a prosperous state. It is evident to the world that Israel pound for pound is likely the most progressive and most prosperous nation on the face of the earth. This can not be ignored. A nation formed just yesterday (1948) and it is already a world power in the region. This is favor.
Now from what I can determine all the Palestinian people want is to share in this prosperity. However, it is difficult if not impossible for Israel to determine friend from foe among the people of Palestine. So the many suffer because of the actions of a few. So it is my contention that radical forces in Palestine truly want a one-state solution, they just want it not to be Israel. An honest assessment of Israel contributions to the world in business, science, agriculture to name a few and even a novice would know that the Palestinian people would not be better off under a Palestinian state. Such a state would likely continue to be violent and even oppressive to its own people. Therefore the people already have what Hamas is truly fighting for: One state for the Palestinian people. So I would say yes to the Palestinian people but no to Hamas.