Why no peace in Israel?

He remembers his covenant forever, the word he commanded, for a thousand generations, the covenant he made with Abraham, the oath he swore to Isaac.
He confirmed it to Jacob as a decree, to Israel as an everlasting covenant: "To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion you will inherit."
Ps 105:8-11

'In those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem,
I will gather all nations and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat. There I will enter into judgment against them concerning my inheritance, my people Israel, for they scattered my people among the nations and divided up my land.
Joel 3:1-2

Middle East Cauldron R

The current (major) conflict in Israel cannot be understood by reading the secular news; and certainly cannot be understood by the biassed reporting emanating from most major news agencies.

Neither is there a secular/political answer to it all. What we are seeing in Israel is the forces of darkness seeking to stand against God's prophetic purposes for the world in which we live.

Jesus is not coming back to Rome, Paris, London or New York: he is coming back to Jerusalem. And the nearer we get in human history to that moment, the more violent will be the situation in that troubled region.

Israel is the centre and Jerusalem the epicentre for the outworking of biblical prophecy. We need to ensure that our prayers are neither formed nor driven by emotive headlines from purely secular sources. The most accurate and unbiased reporter who does not know Christ and the prophetic word and promises of God, can never hope to fully understand or analyse the situation - in the Middle East or anywhere else.

Very sadly there are theologians and groupings within the Christian community who write off God's word as allegorical. But in spite of this God is watching over His word to perform it.

Rainbow over BethlehemGod has made eternal and unconditional promises which will be fulfilled. One of these was given to Noah and is witnessed by the rainbow we see in the sky: it was a promise to all mankind. Another eternal and unconditional covenant was given and affirmed to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. We are seeing the result outworked in our day and age.

Footnote: The prayers that God will answer are those that are in line with His will and purposes. And if we want to find the will of God we can do much worse than looking for these portions of scripture were God says: "I will...."

In this context, it is worthwhile to (re)read Ezekiel Ch. 36 with a focus on the "I will(s)...."

Christians Together, 05/01/2009

Editor 27/01/2009 11:28
Senator George Mitchell (of N/Ireland negotiations fame) is the new US President's envoy to the Middle East. To say that he is walking into a very difficult situation is stating the obvious, however "impossible" is probably a better word.

To sketch a brief background, Hamas (in Gaza) and the Palestinian Authority (in the West Bank and other parts) both have the same ultimate aim i.e. the complete destruction of Israel as a Jewish state. However they are each employing different tactics to achieve their (same) ends. And the each have different groups of militia and income streams (i.e. paymasters/controllers).

Hamas intends to pursue its policies by force, whereas the PA (headed up by Mahmoud Abbas) are travelling on a political/diplomatic route (aiming to incrementally regain geographic slices of Israel until the Israeli land sector is so small as to be militarily indefensible, and the nation politically, economically and demographically irrelevant and impotent (i.e. easily vanquished).

But there is a big battle between Hamas and the PA for control (of the situation) and allegiance (of the people and foreign nations). This was why there was a very violent - and largely un-reported - 'civil war' in Gaza when Israel pulled out. Hamas won control in Gaza, politically and militarily, but in doing so slaughtered PA militia and supporters. So the enmity between the two groups is immense.

In terms of attracting the loyalty of the 'Palestinian' people, the war which is now being waged is on: "Who will re-build Gaza?" And basically this needs money and political support at an international level.

So, back now to George Mitchell. He is going out the speak to the PA but is not intending to meet with Hamas (as it is viewed as a terrorist organisation). And Hamas won't consider burying the hatchet with the PA until the PA breaks negotiations with Israel. (Of course the PA have little incentive to restore relations with Hamas if the former feels that the international community is on the PA side).

The following brief extracts describe the situation facing George Mitchell -

WASHINGTON - The United States' new envoy to the Middle East, George Mitchell, will be working to secure a lasting ceasefire in Gaza, as part of an attempt to bolster Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinian Authority. He does not intend to meet with Hamas representatives.

The US perceives itself as being in a race with Hamas and, by extension, Iran, in the rehabilitation of Gaza. Mitchell's entourage - state department employees responsible for humanitarian aid and rehabilitation efforts, rather than politicians specializing in negotiations - suggests that delivering assistance to Gaza will be the focus of his current visit.
Read on... http://tinyurl.com/bdv53p
The Palestinian Authority must end its peace talks and security coordination with Israel if it ever expects to reconcile with Hamas, one of the group's senior officials said Sunday.

Osama Hamdan also vowed that Hamas will continue to bring in arms to the Gaza Strip despite an Israeli blockade of the coastal territory.
Read on....http://tinyurl.com/bvg58h

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Christians Together in the Highlands and Islands > Esther 4-14 > Why no peace in Israel?