Open Letter #2 (Response)
Oct 06, 2007
From my first response to Dr. Cawtha, he wrote again, and I thought it would be beneficial to post it online for all to read. By the way, Dr. Cawtha is a retired psychiatrist from the United Kingdom who is in the USA.
Your explanation has enabled more clarity than previously existed, and I especially appreciate the distinction concerning the multiple/plural Jerusalems in the O.T. texts. I am aware that you must be very busy based on your schedule and written output. If you ever have time, I will also be seeking to similarly clarify the commonly interpreted position of those well known "others" who often focus on Ezekiel ch. 36 when advancing the case for an "ALIYAH," involving a return of the Jews to a place, Jerusalem, in a land, Israel.
Some years back I supported a movement financially to enable that work and have subsequently come to doubt the wisdom of such work whereby Jews are being relocated/shipped back to Israel. I am sure you have elsewhere covered this view from/in Ezekiel, or may do so when time permits in another email to me.
Dear Dr. Cawthra,
Thank-you for your quick reply. As it is Saturday, I don't have any pressing things to do right now, so am able to answer your email right away in regard to Ezekiel 36.
This chapter is about Edom (that is, its Greek form Idumea), who desire to inherit the old land (vs. 2 and 5).
If we trace the history of Edom, as I did in The Struggle for the Birthright, we see immediately that they are the descendants of Esau, who lost the land to Jacob through deception and lying (Gen. 27:24). Jacob was prophesied to be the one to whom the birthright was to go (Gen. 25:23), but Jacob obtained it by unlawful means. He lied, not having faith in the ability of God to fulfill His Word of prophecy.
Esau therefore had a legitimate cause against Jacob in the divine court. Isaac recognized this and therefore prophesied that Esau would eventually be given "the dominion" in order to do him justice (Gen. 27:40).
It is probable that none of them realized that the law of the hated son applied here, for that may not have been revealed until the days of Moses. He wrote about it in Deut. 21:15-17. It shows that the firstborn cannot be disinherited without cause. The next law gives us the causes (vs. 18-23), for it deals with a rebellious son.
And so, Esau, being the firstborn, had not yet proven himself to be unworthy at the time when Jacob lied to obtain the blessing. For this reason, God required Jacob to give back the birthright before the end of time, in order to give Esau's descendants time to prove that they were the "stubborn and rebellious son" (Deut. 21:18).
Throughout the years, Esau's descendants (now called Edom) fought with the descendants of Jacob (now called Israel). Finally, however, in 126 B.C. John Hyrcanus of Judah conquered the Edomites (i.e., Idumea) and forced them to become Jews if they wanted to remain in their land. This they did, and as Josephus tells us, "they were hereafter no other than Jews" (Antiquities of the Jews, XIII, ix, 1). This is confirmed by virtually all historians and is not questioned by any of them--including all Jewish historians and encyclopedias.
Of course, most evangelical ministers either choose to ignore plain history, or else they are part of the general blindness divinely imposed upon them.
The question is this: How, then, can the prophecies of Edom/Idumea be fulfilled in the end times when there is no nation of Edom in the world today? The only answer is that the Jews must fulfill those prophecies as well as those of the rebellious nation of Judah (i.e., the "evil figs" of Jer. 24). They have a dual set of prophecies to fulfill, as I explained in The Struggle for the Birthright.
The law of tribulation did not allow Judah to return to the land apart from repentance and recognition of their "hostility" (NASB) to God (Yahweh = Jesus). See Lev. 26:40-43. But the Jews were allowed to return under the banner of ESAU-EDOM, because of the sin of Jacob in Genesis 27. Thus, the Zionist state was established in 1948 called "Israel," because that is the birthright name, and because Jacob had to give the birthright back to Esau until he proved himself to be unworthy.
Thus, Britain (flag = Union JACK, or Jacob) gave Palestine to the Jews in 1948 to fulfill Isaac's prophecy in Gen. 27:40.
Esau has been proving himself ever since that time.
Insofar as Ezekiel 35, 36 is concerned, take note that this is about the conflict between Israel and Idumea-EDOM. It is all about the Jews returning to Palestine--but not as Israelites, but as Edomites. THEY are the ones who have said, "aha, even the ancient high places are ours in possession" (36:2). THEY are the ones who have "appointed My land into their possession" (36:5).
They are also fulfilling Malachi 1:1-4, which references the law of the hated son and how God works to protect the hated son. It shows how the hated son was the original Zionist. It also shows that God will ultimately cause him to fail.
See also Obadiah, and Isaiah 34:5-10.
So the bottom line is that God has indeed supported the Zionists in their effort to return (Aliyah) to the old land. But it is for a reason that is far different from the explanation that the evangelical community has viewed it. If they had paid attention to the history of how Edom was absorbed into Jewry in 126 B.C., they might have been able to interpret the Scriptures correctly. But they did not understand plain history, for they were blinded.
As a psychiatrist, you know how people can overlook the obvious and can be taught to see what is not there and not see what is in front of them. Men can do this to other men in affecting their minds (soul). But there is also a corresponding level of blindness that can be done on a spiritual level. This is what God has done, and when we see the bigger picture, we can see WHY He did this. Protecting hated sons was only one reason. It was also to reduce our liability before God (1 Tim. 1:13; Luke 12:47, 48).
But that is another issue. I will close here for now.
God bless you in your study of His Word.
Dr. Stephen Jones