Jerusalem Prophecy Watch
Dec 06, 2012
JERUSALEM — Palestinians and Israelis hardened their positions Wednesday over a contentious new settlement push around Jerusalem, with Israel going full throttle on plans to develop the area and the Palestinians trying to block it through an appeal to the U.N. Security Council....
The Palestinian representative to the United Nations said in letters to the council, the General Assembly and the secretary-general that the intensification of the Israeli campaign is clearly part of "Israel's contemptuous response" to the assembly's overwhelming vote last week to recognize the state of Palestine.
"Israel is methodically and aggressively pushing ahead with this unlawful land grab and colonization of Palestine with the intent to alter the demographic composition, character and status of the Palestinian territory, especially in and around East Jerusalem and the Jordan Valley, in its favor in order to entrench its illegitimate control of the land and prejudge the outcome of final status negotiations," the letter said....
The Palestinians said they would leverage their newfound U.N. status to seek a Security Council resolution to halt the Jerusalem-area plans.
COMMENT: Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu announced plans for another major Jewish settlement around Jerusalem in order to punish the Palestinians for obtaining legal status as a State on November 29, when the UN recognized them as such.
On the one side, the Israelis assume ownership of the entire land, not only to the Jordan River, but also including the kingdom of Jordan, Syria, and Lebanon and even parts of Egypt and Iraq. This is what is called "Greater Israel," which is depicted on its flag. The six-pointed star represents their nation, and the two blue bars above and below it represent the two rivers--the Nile and the Euphrates, which they consider their boundaries.
It is a land war, which, if they would win, would turn into a war for control of the whole earth.
Zionists claim that the Palestinians are getting in the way and ought to leave or be killed. Palestinians claim the right of self-defense, but the Jewish-owned media always depicts them as "militants," never as freedom fighters. The implication is that the Zionists are the ones "defending" themselves from Palestinian militants and terrorists.
This entire conflict presents the Christian community with many serious biblical issues. First and foremost is the character of Jesus Christ Himself. Would Jesus really lead an Israeli cause and in essence declare war on Palestinians? Is He, in the end, a military messiah as the Jews have envisioned all along? Does He have no sympathy for downtrodden and oppressed people other than Jews?
Secondly, is the Old Jerusalem the mother of the chosen ones, as the Jews contend? Was Paul wrong after all in his teaching on the two Jerusalems in Galatians 4:22-31? Will Hagar inherit the kingdom by means of the Old Covenant and its methodology? Will Sarah be subject to Hagar in the end? In fact, Christians are presented with the very basic theological question of the validity of the New Testament (covenant), which the Zionists are working to undermine.
Thirdly, will the fig tree that Jesus cursed (representing the nation of Judah) bear fruit in the end, in spite of Jesus' statement to the contrary? Matthew 21:19 says it will never again bear fruit. Christians deny this when they turn to Matthew 24:32, where Jesus says that this same fig tree would come to life again and bear more leaves. (I was taught this in my youth.) But leaves are not fruit, nor do fig leaves represent what Jesus is looking for in a "tree" (nation). Fig leaves have been a problem since Adam.
The main confusion is caused by a lack of historical understanding as well. Most Christians do not understand the Esau factor involved in this question. It is common for prophecy teachers to identify Palestinians with Edom. I recall in the late 1970's, when Egyptian President Sadat made a peace treaty with Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, that some prophecy preachers claimed this historic handshake and hug was "Jacob and Esau" in Genesis 33:4. Of course, Begin was supposed to be Jacob, and Sadat was Esau.
On one occasion, I called in to the radio station and questioned a prophecy teacher on this misidentification. My initial question was: "You have been telling us for years that the Arabs were Ishmael, so why are you now suddenly changing your story and telling us that the Arabs are Esau?"
He backed down immediately, because he knew he had been caught with his pants down. I then asked him, "If the Arabs are Ishmaelites, then where are the Edomites of Esau today?"
He obviously did not know, so he replied, "Well, do you know?"
Of course, I had my books laid out in front of me. I said, "Well, I was looking it up in the Encyclopedias, and I found out that the Edomites were conquered and absorbed by the Jews around 126 B.C. Josephus tells us that they were forced to convert to Judaism, and so they became Jews."
This really flustered him, and so he immediately reverted to his fall-back position that this was all spiritual. "Well, I believe that anyone who is of the flesh is of Edom," he said.
Certainly, there is a grain of truth in that position, but if we take that stand, then we must be consistent by saying, "anyone who believes in Christ is an Israelite." He did not like where this was going, of course, because he wanted to create spiritual Edomites while retaining physical Israelites (which he identified as the Jews) as being the chosen ones.
The fact is, Jews today represent both the cursed fig tree of Judah and the Edomites. Both streams of prophecy can be found in world Jewry, especially in Zionism. The cursed fig tree has indeed come to life, though it will remain fruitless as Jesus prophesied. The Edomite faction has long desired to inherit the old land, which they believe was denied to them by Jacob's fraud when he lied to his father in Genesis 27:24. Hence, Malachi prophesies Esau's words in 1:4, "We will return and rebuild." When Esau-Edom succeeds in gaining possession of the land, Ezekiel 36:2 echoes their thoughts again, "The everlasting heights have become our possession."
But what does God say? Ezekiel 36:5 reads,
5 Therefore, thus says the Lord God, "Surely in the fire of my jealousy I have spoken against the rest of the nations and against all Edom, who appropriated My land for themselves as a possession..."
Much is being said today about "dividing the land," as if it is the UN or the Palestinians who are trying to do this. The Zionist "solution" is to kick out all Palestinians and give the whole land to the Jews. But it was first the UN that divided the land between Jews and Palestinians on November 29, 1947. Secondly, this division would not have been an issue, except that the Jewish Edomites came to stake their claim over the entire land of Palestine. In the past 65 years the Jews have been the ones who have "appropriated My land for themselves as a possession." They have laid claim to the whole land in order to divide it up among Jewish settlers. Hence, we see the settlements being built on land given by the UN to the Palestinians.
That is what Ezekiel and Malachi prophesied. Zionism is not the regathering of Israelites, but the claim of Edomites pretending to be Israelites. The Israelites were the people of the northern 10 tribes of Israel, whom the Assyrians carried away, and who never returned to the old land. Neither were they Jews, for the term "Jew" is short for Judah, which was the southern kingdom.
Judah and Israel had different callings and different destinies. Jeremiah 18:1-10 shows the destiny of Israel. Jeremiah 18:11 to 19:15 shows the destiny of Judah and Jerusalem.
Israel's destiny was like a wet clay vessel that was "remade into another vessel" (Jer. 18:4). Judah's destiny was like a hardened clay vessel that was destroyed in the city dump, "even as a potter's vessel which cannot again be repaired" (Jer. 19:11).
Judah and Jerusalem were destroyed in the days of Jeremiah when Nebuchadnezzar destroyed the city. But the city was later rebuilt by Nehemiah. Then in 70 AD the Romans again destroyed the city. But the city was again rebuilt. We have now come to the final act of God, for God has regathered the Edomites and fruitless figs of Judah to the old land once again in order to fulfill Jeremiah's prophecy. At some point in history, Jerusalem will be destroyed in such a manner that it "cannot again be repaired."
With each escalation in the present land war around Jerusalem, we come another step closer to the fulfillment of Jeremiah's prophecy. As we do, it becomes increasingly important for you to understand the biblical history of this conflict and to know the main players involved. If you have put off reading my book, The Struggle for the Birthright, this may be a good time to catch up on your reading.
Dr. Stephen Jones