Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Israel’s Next War

It is easy to become complacent about yet another war in the Mideast. There have been many wars involving Israel that have not lead us to Armageddon so why shouldn’t this trend just continue? There are several very good reasons why Israel’s Next War will fundamentally change the geopolitical situation in the Mideast. Here are a few of these reasons that come immediately to mind…

God’s Promises to Israel
First of all, God is in control despite appearances in this materialistic world. God has given Israel a lot more land than they currently occupy; Genesis 15:18 says it is God’s will for Abraham’s descendents to occupy the land from the Nile to the Euphrates rivers. Those who think this promise includes the descendants of Ishmael ignores passages such as Deuteronomy 1:8 which make it clear that God intends for Israel to occupy this land. Preterists will say this promise was fulfilled in past history but passages like Ezekiel 37:25 makes it clear that God’s promise about the land of Israel is forever. Others will say this promise is to be fulfilled in the far future after Jesus returns. This is true but there is nothing that says it couldn’t be fulfilled prior to Jesus returning. And it is interesting to note that every serious conflict Israel has been drawn into has resulted in their controlling more land.

The Timing is Right
Another reason the next Israeli war will fulfill Bible prophecies is that there are so many indications we are in the season of the Lord’s return. Besides all the trends leading even observers without a biblical world view to conclude history has to be headed toward some sort of spectacular culmination, 2011 seems to be a good candidate for when the Tribulation could potentially begin.

Technological Advancements
Many of the prophecies about end-time events that people once had to think would have to be supernaturally fulfilled can now be done through natural means. And God virtually always works through natural means, “for we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7, NKJ). His true followers understand His omnipotence and generally recognize fulfillment of Bible prophecy as a miracle even when God uses natural means. A good example is how the two prophets of God during the Tribulation will be seen by the whole world (Revelation 11:3-12)… in an age of satellite TV, such exposure is not a mystery. I produced a PowerPoint Bible study titled, “Importance of Technology” addressing several of these prophetic technological advancements.

Israel Has Returned to the Land
It is interesting to note the detail in which Isaiah 43:5-6 has been fulfilled; “Fear not, for I am with you; I will bring your descendants from the east, and gather you from the west; I will say to the north, 'Give them up!' And to the south, 'Do not keep them back!' Bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth.” Israel has returned to the land in the same order as this Scripture passage describes! The Jews first returned to the land of Israel from the Middle East (Syria, Iraq, Jordan 1930-1940), then Western Europe after WWII, then Russia starting in 1988, and finally Ethiopia (Operation Solomon, Summer, 1991). Israel has been in wars since 1991 that have not resulted in massive geopolitical changes but the next two conditions were not previously in play…

Israel’s Enemies will use WMDs
I think we’ll soon learn what happened to the Weapons of Mass Destruction (chemical warheads) that Saddam Hussein is known to have had in Iraq. President George W. Bush was maligned for attacking Iraq under false pretenses but the evidence that Saddam had chemical weapons was pretty conclusive… so what happened to them? Many analysts think they were transferred to their brothers in Syria. This might explain why Syria has been so bold in provoking Israel lately; they think they have the capacity to bring to fruition the vision of Iarael’s Islamic neighbors to, “cut them off from being a nation, that the name of Israel may be remembered no more” (Psalm 83:4). Syria must figure they can get away with this due to their support from Iran, Turkey and Russia while the United States has become burned out on war in the Mideast, is accommodating toward Islam, and is no longer standing by Israel. Syria’s existential threat to Israel will force them to use a nuclear weapon to destroy Damascus in fulfillment of Isaiah 17:1.

All Nations Oppose Israel
In past wars Israel could always count on the United States to stand by them. That is no longer the case. Despite the rhetoric from the Obama administration, their actions have made it clear that our government can not be counted on to support Israel in a war. Our diverting bunker buster weapons intended for Israel is but one example of these actions. This development puts the world in the condition necessary for Zechariah 12:3 to be fulfilled, “it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.”

Considering all this brings Habakkuk 1:5 to mind: “Look among the nations and watch-- be utterly astounded! For I will work a work in your days which you would not believe, though it were told you.” It is hard not to have a sense that these days are rapidly approaching.

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