The Reunification of Jerusalem & Dividing the Land
40 years since the re-unification of Jerusalem.
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
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This is another edition of the Bible in the News brought to you this week by Paul Billington. Welcome to some thought-provoking analysis of the news from a Bible perspective--and a different approach from those shallow and meaningless news digests that you could read for yourself or hear on the radio. Our purpose is to stimulate interest and thought--not only about the news headlines--but also about the Bible passages that throw light upon both the issue at hand, and also on the background to it.
Take for example, the current emphasis on the fact that it is now 40 years since the re-unification of Jerusalem which came about as a result of the Six-Days War in June 1967. The event itself was a milestone in the modern history of the Middle East. But the fact that Israel won that war, and survived the Arabs' attempt to destroy the Jewish State by wiping it off the map, is not being celebrated with any enthusiasm by the nations of the world or their leaders today. Even the United States has refused to attend celebrations in Jerusalem--and as for the once "great" Britain, one gets the feeling that they would rather see Israel pushed into the sea than to stay put in Jerusalem and the West Bank--that is, of course, the Biblical heartland, the territory of ancient Judea and Samaria.
So it is that we keep hearing governments and the news media regurgitating the worn-out remedy called a "two-state solution." How many today realize that this idea has already been suggested and actually implemented at least three times already? What it really means is dividing the land between Arab and Jew, so that the Jews get less land and the Arabs more of it.
In November 1917 Britain's Balfour Declaration stated that the Government viewed "with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people." The League of Nations granted to Britain a "Mandate" for the achievement of that objective. The Arabs objected violently to this, and following riots the land was divided by Britain in 1922 creating two states; Trans-Jordan and Palestine. As history shows us, that two-state solution solved nothing!
Again the Arabs turned to rioting and murderous violence. In 1937 the Peel commission put forward another two-state solution, the "Partition Plan." Again the Jews would get less land and the Arabs would get more--virtually breaking up a viable Jewish homeland. The war years postponed that, but in 1947 the United Nations voted to divide the land between Arabs and Jews. This led directly to war, now known as Israel's War of Independence in which she survived against overwhelming odds. This war established the 1949 borders which were unsuccessfully invaded by the Arabs in 1967 and again in 1973.
Still the notion of land for peace persisted--more land for the Arabs and less land for Israel.
In 2005 Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip and demolished the Jewish settlements there--generally know as Gush Katif. This effectively created a Palestinian State--one that is in chaos due to fighting between Fatah and Hamas while at the same time firing rockets into Israel.
It ought to be clear to anyone by now that a two-state solution is no answer at all, and the rulers of this world must know full-well that it is no answer. The whole idea from its first implementation in the 1920's until now has been one aimed at appeasing the Arabs--and even the government of Israel itself has tried to pursue this road-map to national disaster. The whole concept of buying off the Arabs with land or anything else, is a mirage of the desert. The world has yet to learn that it cannot trade God's land or Jewish blood in exchange for Arab oil or greasy peace agreements.
This policy that has been followed--and which is being followed by the nations of the world--is something that will have to be answered for. Look at what God says through the prophet Joel, chapter 3, verses 1 and 2.
"For, behold, in those days, and in that time, when I shall bring again the captivity of Judah and Jerusalem, I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land."
This Scripture has been seen to be connected to the events of June 1967, when Jews regained control over Judah and Jerusalem. So also the prophecy of Daniel 8:14 has been associated with it long before the event itself.
In 1754 Thomas Newton calculated a restoration of Jews would take place 2,300 years from Alexander's invasion of Asia in BC 333. In other words he expected it in 1967.
In 1868 R. Milligan in his book "Reason and Revelation" wrote of the same matters saying that Alexander's conquest began in "the Spring of the year 334 BC, and consequently it will terminate in the Spring or about the middle of AD 1967" (Page 94).
Twelve years before Israel gained the city of Jerusalem, F. Bilton wrote in his book "Apocalypse and Gospels" (1955),
"Because Jerusalem (i.e. old Jerusalem) must be possessed by the Jews PRIOR to Christ's return, so that he might manifest himself to them as their deliverer and Saviour, the ejection of Hashemite Jordan from there is a foregone conclusion. We can look then for developments which will result in Israel's getting possession of the whole city, and for a dreadful conflagration kindled by that spark throughout the Middle East."
The land allocated for a Jewish National Home in 1922 included all land west of the Jordan river. It included the so-called West Bank. Subsequent efforts to divide the Land, including the efforts being made to create a separate Palestinian State today, take us back to the prophecy of Joel chapter 3 which speaks of nations "parting my land." Look at the words there--this is speaking of partition!
The prophet Daniel, chapter 11 verse 39 also speaks of those who would "divide the land for gain."
There is more to this than what we can enter into here, but clearly, those nations that are involved in partitioning or dividing God's Land must expect judgment. Let there be no mistake, those who dismiss the word of God through His prophets, do so at their own peril. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God, says the apostle.
" Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat: for there will I sit to judge all the heathen round about. Put ye in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe: come, get you down; for the press is full, the fats overflow; for their wickedness is great. Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision: for the day of the LORD is near in the valley of decision. The sun and the moon shall be darkened, and the stars shall withdraw their shining. The LORD also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the LORD will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel (Joel 3:12-16)."
These are serious matters. Let us understand that this is the time to make God's word known on these matters. Silence is complicity.
So, as we sometimes sing: Who is on the Lord's side, Who will face the foe..."
May we each be strengthened to stand for God, for His people, and for His Land.
Talk to you again next week if the Lord wills on www.bibleinthenews.com or www.biblemagazine.com
Printed: Wednesday, May 16, 2007
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