Dangerous Road Ahead!
by Dan Juster, Director, Tikkun Ministries International
The recent Israel elections are the most significant since the election of Menachem Begin four decades ago in May of 1977, when the Likud conservative party first replaced the Labor party. The Labor party had governed the country since the founding of the State in 1948. These election results may be fraught with more weightiness and danger than any other. Israel has turned right! There are two reasons: the Palestinian state issue and the Iran nuclear bomb issue.
A few years ago, Ehud Olmert led negotiations in which he offered to give more to the Palestinians than even Ehud Barak had before him. The Palestinians under Abbas refused all reasonable offers. The deteriorating security situation in Gaza and Lebanon and the inconclusive Second Lebanon War led Israelis to turn to Benjamin Netanyahu. Amazingly, Netanyahu embraced the two state solution. Despite this, negotiations in the last few years have failed. Last summer we experienced another Gaza war with thousands of missiles sent into Israel, reaching as far as Tel Aviv and southern Haifa.
Peace is a Matter of the Heart
There are other aspects of the situation that are widely known in Israel but are rarely reported in the West, that totally discredit the Palestinian Authority (P.A.) and show its true heart. The Palestinian government in the West Bank, under supposedly moderate leaders, names town squares and streets after terrorists! Israel and Jews are demonized in Palestinian textbooks and media. The P.A. gives payments to families of suicide bombers. Salaries and pensions are paid to convicted terrorists and murderers in Israeli jails. The P.A. has entered into a form of unity government with the terrorist group Hamas. It does not look like a peace partner.
Netanyahu's Rejection of a Two State Solution
Israel has now elected a right leaning majority, and Prime Minister Netanyahu says he no longer supports a two state solution at this time. He no longer believes, if he ever did, that the two state solution is really the final goal of the P. A.
Why Israel Has Turned to the Right
The Israeli center do not believe the Palestinians really want a just, viable peace that preserves Israel as a democratic and Jewish state. They also believe that a takeover by Islamists on the West Bank would occur. In addition, they believe the negotiations with Iran are a terrible appeasement and that Netanyahu is the strongest and best leader to deal with this problem. The left agrees with Netanyahu's view of Iran but not his strategy with President Obama. This turn to "the right" was unanticipated by the Israeli opinion polls and completely unexpected by Obama and other world leaders who are reported as having funded the Left's election campaign.
The Dangerous and Difficult Road Ahead
From my perspective, this all leads us into a very dangerous period, but one that cannot be avoided. Israelis are disillusioned with both the Palestinians and with the Iran negotiations. I believe they are seeing correctly in their disillusionment. However, most of the world, and especially the Obama administration, remains in delusion. They think we can have a real deal with Iran that prevents them from getting a nuclear bomb even though they can keep their missiles, their uranium enrichment capacity and their sponsorship of terrorism. They are also in delusion concerning the intent of the Palestinian leadership under Mahmoud Abbas. Israel is thus blamed for the breakdown of negotiations. The settlements (West Bank towns and cities) are declared to be the real problem. The ultimate deception of the West is the declaration that Islam is a peaceful, loving and tolerant religion. Where? Which Islamic country? This is compounded by President Obama's refusal to speak of Islamist terrorism as such.
As they say in cold climates, Israel is in for some very rough sledding. President Obama and European leaders have been disappointed by their inability to sway the Israeli electorate. The Obama administration will probably respond by not resisting resolutions in the U.N. Security Council condemning Israel, possible economic sanctions and finally moves to impose a two state settlement on Israel. The Palestinian narrative and anti-Semitism will continue to grow on Western university campuses, and more people will continue to be taken in by the one-sided view that Israel is a colonial imposition on the indigenous people of the land, and should not exist.
This calls for tremendous prayer. Why are we Messianic Jews living here? Because we think that even adverse conditions are God's providence leading toward the salvation of Israel through Yeshua. However, for the sake of the salvation of Israel, we will also need to share in the pain of future events.
Lest there be misunderstanding, we are also concerned for the just treatment of the Palestinian people. Their salvation is a central intercessory thrust. The issue is the Palestinian political leadership. In any case, we will continue to work with Christian Arab pastors to build real bridges of hope and outreach, to offer the kingdom of God rather than the sham of mere words whitewashing over hatred.
Dangerous Road Ahead!
by Asher Intrater, , Revive Israel
By Asher Intrater
Much prayer happened leading up to the recent elections in Israel, but now there is an equal or more urgent need for prayer as the government coalition is being formed and taking its first steps.
There are two parts to forming the government of Israel:
1. Election - who is to be the "king of the Jews?"
2. Coalition - who will come together to form the government?
We tend to think of the cross only in terms of atonement - the forgiveness of sins. Amen. But at the time, the great contention that led to the crucifixion revolved around another issue: "Is He really the Messiah, the "King of the Jews?" (John 18) Today, the prime minister of Israel sits in the earthly position of the "King of the Jews", but obviously does not "wear" the full messianic and divine mantle. Because Israel ceased to be a nation for nearly 2000 years, this "king of the Jews" issue similarly disappeared. But now that Israel is again a nation, this leadership position has returned and is again the most contested and attacked position in the world.
The spiritual battle over the Israeli government has to do with unity to form the coalition. You cannot form a government without a coalition, and you cannot have a coalition without unity among the party leaders.
This same issue is found in the international church today. The King is Yeshua. He's already been "elected" "I have set My King on My holy hill of Zion." (Psalms 2:6) However, there is not yet enough unity among His followers for His kingdom to fully function and advance according to Yeshua's prayer "... that they all may be one ... that the world may believe that You sent Me ..." (John 17)
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