Is Peace Possible? Part 3: Dividing the Land

Creating a territorial link connecting the West Bank and Gaza would divide Israel in half.

One key development that has not been reported is the fact that the Palestinians demand a “territorial link” connecting the West Bank and Gaza.

What does this mean? It would literally divide Israel into two parts.

The PLO released a statement through its news agency Wafa and stated a “territorial link connecting the West Bank and Gaza is crucial to the integrity of the Palestinian state”, and was a prerequisite for peace.

The Bible says in Joel in 3:2:

I will also gather all nations, And bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; And I will enter into judgment with them there on account of My people, My heritage Israel, Whom they have scattered among the nations; They have also divided up My land.

Notice one of the reasons for the gathering of the nations for judgment is dividing My land.  As I said in an earlier blog piece,

This land was given to the Jews as an eternal homeland. As nations try to divide this land, remember what God says in Deuteronomy 32:8-9:

When the Most High divided their inheritance to the nations, When He separated the sons of Adam, He set the boundaries of the peoples according to the number of the children of Israel. For the Lord’s portion is His people; Jacob is the place of His inheritance.

According to this passage, it is the nations’ borders that are based on Israel, and not vice versa. From a Biblical perspective, altering Israel’s borders is an expression of rebellion against God who established the borders of Israel.

As the passage continues in verses 13-18 of Joel 3, it says, “Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, go down; For the winepress is full, The vats 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 moon will grow dark, And the stars will diminish their brightness. The Lord also will roar from Zion, And utter His voice from Jerusalem; The heavens and earth will shake; But the Lord will be a shelter for His people, And the strength of the children of Israel. “So you shall know that I am the Lord your God, Dwelling in Zion My holy mountain. Then Jerusalem shall be holy, And no aliens shall ever pass through her again.” And it will come to pass in that day That the mountains shall drip with new wine, The hills shall flow with milk, And all the brooks of Judah shall be flooded with water; A fountain shall flow from the house of the Lord and water the Valley of Acacias.

As the nations continue to pressure Israel into trading land for peace, unknowingly they are fulfilling this prophecy of dividing the land – and thereby sealing their fate.

Until next time…

Is Peace Possible? Part 2: Security for a Jewish State

Is peace possible without security? Netanyahu said last week, “security is the foundation of peace. Without it, peace will unravel. With it, peace can be stable and enduring.”

However, we recognize the “peace process” is fragile considering in the midst of the peace summit two terrorist attacks took place in Israel that left four people dead, including a pregnant woman along with another two who were injured in a separate incident.

Last week, the Western Media failed to report one of the main factors that allowed these terrorist attacks to take place — was the removal of checkpoints at the request of the Obama Administration.

George Mitchell, the U.S. Mideast peace envoy, specifically requested that Israel remove the checkpoints as a confidence-building gesture to restart talks with the PA. Over the past year and a half Israel removed at least 15 staffed checkpoints near Hebron where the first terrorist attack took place.

The checkpoints were put in place, not to prevent the movement of Palestinian people – but rather to prevent terrorist attacks like the ones that took place last week.

What would happen if the Palestinians ceased their acts of terrorism against Israel? The checkpoints would be removed, and they would be able to move freely in and out of Israel. I know what you’re thinking –  Israel would never allow that to happen!  Yeah. Right.

You’re probably asking yourself – how do you know? Okay, I’ll tell you.  Well, I live in the Israeli city of Arad, which is about 20-minute drive west of the Dead Sea. Our little city is completely surrounded by Bedouin Muslims. I’ve never counted how many villages there are, but I venture to say at least 20 are within a half hour from where we live.  Now let me ask you a question:  How many security checkpoints do you think Israel has established to prevent terrorist attacks? If you guessed – NONE, you are correct! That’s right, there’s not a single checkpoint in any of these Muslim towns where their minarets (prayer towers) can be seen from miles away!

Why are there no checkpoints? These Muslims are not carrying out terrorist attacks! The media would love you to believe that Israel places these checkpoints in order to prevent the movement of Palestinians in the West Bank.  But careful examination of the facts on the ground shows that Israel establishes checkpoints to PROTECT its citizens.

Israel doesn’t care if you’re a Muslim – however, Israel does care if you’re going to commit an act of terrorism against its citizens! So this is the reason why there are checkpoints in some areas and other areas are completely open without any restriction of movement.

Another fascinating aspect of the recent peace summit that wasn’t reported was the fact that Abbas wants those sitting in Israeli jails to be “freed”. Let’s take a look at what he said. I wrote on it in Worthy News last week:

“Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas said much has already been accomplished over the years and now was the time to address the “final status issues” of “Jerusalem, the settlements, the borders, security, water, and also releasing the detainees — in order to end the occupation that started 1967, the occupation of the Palestinian territories, and in order to create the state of Palestine that lives side by side with the state of Israel.”

Let me translate what the “releasing of detainees” means, since the Western Media failed to report it! Abbas wants the release of those who’ve been serving sentences in Israeli jails for carrying out terrorist attacks against innocent civilians in Israel!

Let’s look at what took place just before the peace summit last week. The Palestinian Authority honored Um Yousuf Abu Hamid, whose four sons are sitting in Israeli jails for carrying out terrorist attacks targeting Israeli civilians.

Palestinian Media Watch translated an Al-Hayat al-Jadida article in which the Palestinian Authority calls her a “central partner in the struggle, by virtue of what Hamid has given and continues to give.”

“It is she who gave birth to the fighters, and she deserves that we bow to her in salute and honor.”

So what did her sons do?

Nasser Abu Hamid: Seven life sentences plus 50 years for serving as the commander of Fatah’s military wing, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, in Ramallah. Hamid was convicted of killing seven Israeli civilians and 12 attempted murders. His Brigades is responsible for scores of suicide bombings, shootings and civilian-targeting rocket attacks.

Nasr Abu Hamid: Five life sentences. He is a member of the terror faction of Fatah, Tanzim, and was convicted of involvement in two terror attacks and arms dealing.

Sharif Abu Hamid: Four life sentences. A member of one of the brothers’ units carrying out terror attacks against civilians and soldiers. He accompanied a suicide bomber to his attack in March 2002.

Muhammad Abu Hamid: Two life sentences plus 30 years for involvement in terror attacks.

Are these “detainees” the type of prisoners Israel should release out of their jails to “ensure” peace?

While we’re on the subject of security — what about Gaza? Can Mahmoud Abbas “guarantee” security in Gaza? In Gaza last week, Hamas called on the renewal of terrorist attacks, and called Abbas an illegitimate leader. Let’s face facts – Mahmoud Abbas’ term ended in 2009 – over a year ago! Nevertheless, he’s trying to bring peace to the region, so in the eyes of the world he will remain the “unelected” leader of the Palestinian people!

How can you bring security to a region when trust has been broken? You bring trust by backing your words with your actions.  The PA, however, continues its incitement of violence towards the “Zionist enemy” on its airwaves and what it teaches in its schoolbooks.

If you want to bring peace to the region,  you must change your words of hate and violence to those of peace;  then back those words with actions — and I don’t see that happening any time soon!

Until next time…

Is Peace Possible? Part 1: Legitimacy of a Jewish State

As I reviewed the positions on both sides of the conflict, one can’t even begin to fathom how Netanyahu and Abbas will ever come to a peace agreement.

Today, I want to cover one major point of contention in the negotiations: the legitimacy of a homeland for the Jews.

As Netanyahu stated in his speech last Thursday, he wants “legitimacy” of a “Jewish” state of Israel.

Last Friday, I wrote on Worthy News:

Abbas continued by stating that the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) had already recognized Israel in 1993. He pointed to a “document of mutual recognition” signed by late Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and former PLO leader Yasser Arafat.

“And in this document, we give enough so – to show that our intentions are good, our intentions with respect to recognizing the state of Israel,” he added.

However, the previous night PLO Executive Committee member Wassel Abu Yousef told reporters in Ramallah that the “Palestinians reject the demand to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.”

Last year in Bethlehem, Abbas’ Fatah faction of the PLO adopted a platform rejecting the recognition of Israel as a Jewish state.

The media totally MISSED this key point! Why don’t the Palestinians want to recognize Israel as a “Jewish” State? Because the PLO says it will never accept anything less than the “right of return” for refugees within the state of Israel.

Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, and a return of refugees would destroy the “Jewish” homeland from within. The “refugees” alongside the one million non-Jews that reside in Israel would quickly match the Jewish majority within the democratic state and within one election cycle — the homeland for the Jews would be lost.

So will the United States strong arm Israel into accepting anything less than recognition of a “Jewish” State of Israel?

Today’s Media Summed Up in a Few Words…

A Harley biker is riding by the zoo in Washington, DC when he sees a little girl leaning into the lion’s cage. Suddenly, the lion grabs her by the collar of her jacket and tries to pull her inside to slaughter her, under the eyes of her screaming parents.

The biker jumps off his Harley, runs to the cage and hits the lion square on the nose with a powerful punch.

Whimpering from the pain the lion jumps back letting go of the girl, and the biker brings her to her terrified parents, who thank him endlessly. A reporter has watched the whole event.

The reporter addressing the Harley rider says, ‘Sir, this was the most gallant and brave thing I’ve seen a man do in my whole life.’

The Harley rider replies, ‘Why, it was nothing, really, the lion was behind bars. I just saw this little kid in danger and acted as I felt I should.’

The reporter says, ‘Well, I’ll make sure this won’t go unnoticed. I’m a journalist, you know, and tomorrow’s paper will have this story on the front page…So, what do you do for a living and what political affiliation do you have?’

The biker replies, ‘I’m a U.S. Marine and a Republican.’

The journalist leaves.

The following morning the biker buys the paper to see if it indeed brings news of his actions, and reads, on the front page:

‘U.S. MARINE ASSAULTS AFRICAN IMMIGRANT AND STEALS HIS LUNCH’

That pretty much sums up the media’s approach to the news these days.

Until next time…

…just so you know what life is like in Arad

Last night, I posted a Facebook status about our night last night in Arad and it dawned on me — how much people really don’t know what happens all the time in our town for those who believe in Yeshua (Jesus) as the Messiah. So I thought, I’d post a video that was done four years ago. Not much has changed and it’ll give you an idea of what we deal with in our little town in the Negev.

Until next time…

Shocked! As History Doesn’t Repeat Itself!

When Iran along with the Russians said they had loaded fuel into the reactor this past Saturday, I can honestly say I was shocked! In recent history, Israel prevented the Iraqi and Syrian reactors from even being started, however Israel allowed the reactor in Iran to receive fuel and within a few weeks it will become fully operational. History did not repeat itself this weekend!

I thought perhaps Israel was working along diplomatic channels to prevent fuel from being delivered, or some other plan was in the works that were being carried out preventing this major threshold from being achieved. Now it appears the reactor is “safe” from being targeted by any type of attack. Why? Will Israel really be responsible for the unleashing of radioactivity into the environment? I don’t think so.

Now the question remains, how long will Israel wait before it “defends” itself from the Iranian threat? Will Israel actually allow Iran to build the bomb which the United States says is only a year away?

Until next time…

Al Qaeda Plans for Israel War

As I was reading through the news today, I came across an article which details a new audio message that was intercepted, which said, “Iran will attack American installations in the Gulf, encourages its proxies in Iraq and Afghanistan to attack Americans, and engage in a global terror campaign.”

Amazingly, the message was delivered by Saeed al Shehri, whom the United States held in Guantanamo for six years, before being released and now has emerged as leading Jihad once again from Yemen.

If you have the time, be sure to read the entire article.

Until next time…

Hidden Treasure Trove

As I write the daily devotion each day, and I place a passage of scripture within the message — I find myself studying the Hebrew or the Greek of the Word, since I modify the verse slightly to make it easier to read for our worldwide audience, while at the same time making sure the translation doesn’t lose its meaning.  However, today I came across a verse whose meaning is so deep in Hebrew, there’s truly no way to give it justice when you translate it to English.

In Isaiah 33:6 it says this, ‘Wisdom and knowledge will be the stability of your times, And the strength of salvation; The fear of the Lord is His treasure.’

Now the word stability is the Hebrew word — em-oo-nah, the word is most often translated as faith — however, in this instance, the translators decided to go with the English word, stability. Next the word, strength could be easily be translated as wealth, or treasure. And the word salvation is the same root as the word Yeshua (Jesus).  Finally, the word treasure could easily be translated as “storehouse” or “treasure house”.

Now in Hebrew, the order of the words is different than the translation.  This verse could easily be translated, “And He will be the faith of your times, A wealth of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge; The fear of the Lord is his treasure house.”

And even that translation doesn’t give it justice in the Hebrew.

Truly, it is the “glory of God to conceal a thing, but the honor of Kings to search out a matter.”

Until next time…

Reader’s Question: I’ve noticed other than KJV lately?

I’ve noticed other than KJV lately – will you continue to do so. Blessings, aL

Personally, I’m a King James preferred reader and I’ve used the KJV as the scripture for Worthy Devotions for years, however, we’ve recently changed to accommodate the 10,000 or so daily Worthy Brief readers whose native language is not English.

I’m always amazed how the enemy will use this as an issue to divide the body.  The reality is that the only PERFECT Bible is in the orginal Hebrew and Greek.

Most people, don’t realize that when the United States was founded — it was founded by Pilgrims and Puritans many of which refused to use the King James Version.  The Bible they used was the Geneva Bible, because they had serious problems with the Church of England from which the King James Bible is derived.  Why? Because they were fleeing persecution from the Church of England!

So logically you’re next question would be — well if George isn’t using the King James version, which version is he using?  Well, honestly it depends on the verse!   In many of the newer translations, I have some serious concerns with portions of scripture that have been omitted that clearly should be in the translation. So I’ve done my best to choose which version that accurately portrays the Scripture as it was intended.

For example, the other day I had a dilemma and so I checked the Greek and made an alteration to the NKJV to better bring the concept of what Paul intended.

KJV version of 2 Corinthians 10:3-6 says this,

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: (For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

Now the New King James Version of the same passage says this,

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh.  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.

Now the New King James Version was easier to read, however there’s a word that I disliked and so I altered it when I sent out the devotional.  The word was — arguments.  Not truly the best word here.   The Greek word here is log-is-mos from which we get the word — logic!  I actually couldn’t find in either the THAYER’s GREEK, or the STRONG’s concordance whereby this word was ever defined as “arguments.”  The best rendering for this word, would be thoughts or imaginations.  So what to do?  So I did my best to accurately convey the heart of the message when I sent out the devotional in a fashion that was a little easier to read.

2 Corinthians 10:3-6 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled.

So I tried to remain faithful to the original meaning while at the same time making it just a little easier to read for our readers across the globe.

I hope this answer the question adequately, however I realize this is a highly controversial subject and the decision to accommodate readers across the globe wasn’t taken lightly and prayerfully considered.

Until next time…

Reader’s Question: Jesus spoke of destroying terror – what does that mean?

dear george,i was reading my bible this morning and jesus talked of DESTROYING TERROR,and i do not know what that means,and daniel talked of it too.oh well,please respond if you can,thanks and god bless…

It took me a little bit to figure out what you were referring to, but I did an online parallel Bible search on the word “terror” and I believe I found what you were referencing in Matthew 24:15.

Matthew 24:15 “Daniel the prophet spoke about ‘the destroying terror.’ You will see this standing in the holy place.” (You who read this should understand what it means.) — New Century Version

In this particular passage, Yeshua (Jesus) is referring to the events prior to His return as referenced in Matthew 24:3 —

Matthew 24:3 Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?”

The verse you are referring to is a picture of an event that already took place, yet a double fulfillment is in store since Yeshua mentioned it specifically in Matthew 24.  So in order to understand this particular passage, you have to study a little bit of history.  This is a brief description of what happened roughly 2,150 years ago.

Over 150 years before Jesus’ birth, a group of Jewish warriors led by Judah Maccabee, defeated Anticochus IV. Though terribly outnumbered by their foes, the Maccabees triumphed over the Grecian Syrian Empire. This led to the establishment of Chanukah — the feast of dedication.

Judah entered into Jerusalem only to find the Temple desecrated by a sacrificed pig and an idol of Zeus. Upon seeing this, he immediately began to cleanse the Temple. — read more at Worthy Devotions

So the “abomination of desolation” was the worship of a pig in the midst of the Temple.  We know that Paul talks about the rising of the man of sin (anti-christ) and how he sits as God in the Temple of God, a picture of a coming “abomination of desolation”.  In 2 Thessalonians 2:3-4, it says:

2 Thessalonians 2:3-4 Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition,  who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God.

So ‘the destroying terror’ is a picture of the anti-christ rising to power in the future, becoming a type of the “abomination of desolation”, and the means by which he deceives the entire world.  Obviously, I could go into greater detail, but I’m limited in time today.  May the Lord richly bless you as you continue to study His Word!

Until next time…

by George Whitten, Watchmen in the Wilderness