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News from Iran and Israel

Apr 12, 2006

On April 11, 2006 the Israeli cabinet officially declared Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to be incapacitated. In other words, he is now officially an ex-Prime Minister. Insofar as he is a prophetic picture of Jerusalem, which is poetically called "Ariel" in Isaiah 29:1, this is an important event.

Meanwhile, Iranian President Ahmadinejad announced to the world that his country had successfully enriched uranium that is on a level of 3.5 percent enrichment. This percentage is good enough to power a nuclear power station, but nowhere near rich enough for a nuclear warhead. According to a New York Times article by David Sanger and William Broad,

"Centrifuges are devices whose rotors spin very rapidly to enrich a toxic gas in uranium's rare component, uranium-235, which can then be used to fuel nuclear reactors or atom bombs. The 164 centrifuges Iran said it has strung together in a 'cascade' are enough to test the technology, but it would take years to produce uranium for even one weapon with such a small number. Still, it is a milestone."

In spite of this, Israeli military and political officials are telling Americans (including Christians in churches) that Iran will be a nuclear threat by the end of April. This is designed to put pressure upon President Bush to take military action if necessary, thus pushing America into another war on their behalf. Will they succeed? One cannot be certain at this point, but the noise from the sabre-rattling is starting to register on the Richter scale.

Another interesting point that the New York Times article made was this:

"On Monday, Bush repeated that 'we do not want the Iranians to have a nuclear weapon, the capacity to make a nuclear weapon, or the knowledge as to how to make a nuclear weapon.'

"For that reason, he has opposed allowing Iran to enrich uranium--even though it is a signer of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and has the right to produce fuel for power reactors."

In other words, no one has the LEGAL right to stop Iran from producing fuel for their nuclear reactors. To do so requires the nuclear knowledge, which President Bush wants to deny them. Bush's policy is not based upon law--not even international law. It is based upon fear and a desire to save the Israeli state from destruction. It does not matter to him that the Israelis started this nuclear race in the 1960's when they built their Dimona nuclear reactor. He never mentions publicly that the Israelis themselves have hundreds of nuclear weapons, with which they have blackmailed the world.

And when Bush bashes Muslim countries for not complying with international law or United Nations resolutions, he completely ignores all the U.N. resolutions that the Israelis have flouted over the years--even the ones that the U.S. did not dare to veto.

The bottom line is that since 1948 we have been backing the side of injustice and Israeli terrorists. We could get away with it for decades, because these Muslim countries did not have the technology to fight back and win. But surely they knew that it would only be a matter of time before they would obtain nuclear technology. Well, that time is now, and the chickens are finally coming home to roost.

The problem is not going to go away until one side or the other is wiped out. The Israelis want "justice" for Germany's actions during World War 2, and this has been their primary justification for establishing a Jewish State. No one questions a Jewish State's "right to exist," not even Iran. They only question its right to exist on land stolen and forcibly conquered from Palestinians, driving them out into refugee camps.

The real justification for a Jewish State in Palestine ultimately boils down to a religious question. Did God give that land to Jews or to Muslims? America, as a secular nation, has no right to take sides in a religious dispute. If the nostalgic ones still fancy America to be a Christian nation as at the beginning, they should learn the biblical laws of tribulation and prophecy before they start backing--and protecting--the Israelis regardless of what injustices they might commit.

Because this is such a huge problem, and the biblical ignorance is so monstrous and so complete, I find that I have little choice but to lend my voice to the Church and to the world to teach what the Scriptures actually have to say about this issue.

As a Christian, I am not religiously pro-Muslim. If I thought Islam were the true religion, I would have become one long ago. But as a Christian, I cannot stand aside and watch injustice perpetrated upon anyone. I cannot hold the Christian Zionist position that the Jews can do no wrong, that we must "bless" them by giving them the store, or that God has a double standard of morality for Jews and non-Jews.

Furthermore, if Jesus, Peter, Paul, Stephen, and all of the Old Testament prophets criticized Jewish injustice and immorality without apology, there is no reason why we today must refrain from the same kind of criticism. Did God judge the Old Testament prophets for criticizing the Jewish leaders and people when they were in sin? That is absurd.

It is not love to tell a Jew that he is saved or chosen apart from Jesus Christ. It is not love to take the side of injustice if it is perpetrated by a Jew upon some unfortunate non-Jew. If that were love, then the prophets and apostles and Jesus Himself would have done just that. But I find no precedent for that in the Bible.

I know that, inevitably, Zionists of all stripes will believe that I hate them. This is because so many of their opponents have been guilty of such hatred. Why should they think that I should be any different? All I can say is that they do not know me any more than they knew Jesus or His apostles--who, by the way, did not hate them any more than the Old Testament prophets hated them.

When I read Isaiah 29 and Jeremiah 19, I see destruction coming upon Jerusalem, and by extension, the entire Israeli state. If I hated Jews, would I bother to warn them of impending disaster? My purpose is to save as many of their lives as I can. Zionism is leading millions of them into disaster, to say nothing of the injustice perpetrated upon the Palestinians. If I do not warn them, their blood will be upon my hands. Ezekiel 33:6 says,

"If the watchman see the sword come and blow not the trumpet,and the people be not warned; if the sword come and take away any person among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand."

Not many "watchmen" today actually see and understand the sword that is coming. Secular government officials have a better grasp of this than most Christian ministers. However, they can only speak in a secular, political tone; and I can only speak from a biblical point of view. Going "upstream" is always difficult. What is one small voice among so many great television evangelists with multi-million dollar voices?

Now the "great ones" are forming a new Christian Zionist lobby to pressure the President into continuing his present disastrous policies. No doubt he will listen to them, as politicians are always impressed by numbers (voters). But I will sleep with a clear conscience.

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Category: Middle East
Blog Author: Dr. Stephen Jones