As Donald Trump Goes, So Goes Israel?
How ironic that people from all over the world seem to be more excited and less divided over the election of Donald Trump as United States President, than Americans are … what with some folks in the United States yelling, “Trump is not my President.”
Hardly any election in American history has polarized Americans more than Donald Trump’s defeat of Hilary Clinton this past November. Normally America comes together in some optimistic fashion to give a new president the (benefit of the doubt) opportunity to see what he can/will do. But not this time, beginning with the President’s controversial decision to (temporarily) ban immigrants from seven nations hostile toward the United States; seven countries that spawn terrorists or subsidize terrorism, with a permanent ban (until further notice) on refugees from Syria.
By and large, the citizens and leaders of one nation in particular have expressed their enthusiasm for Donald Trump’s presidency … Israel. Certainly there are more than just a few Jews in the United States and some in Israel that are dismayed over the election. Yet, through numerous articles from Israeli journalists reporting on the reaction of Israeli citizens and their leaders, it’s clear that there is an atmosphere of cheerfulness and confidence unparalleled since President Harry Truman was the first national leader to congratulate Israel on her rebirth as a sovereign nation in 1948.
This heart-felt hopefulness harbored by many Israelis of better times ahead in Israel—contingent on stronger relations between Israel and the United States (in glaring contrast to former President Obama’s contentious conduct and divisive demeanor toward Israel)—is, for the most part, connected to four passionate but seemingly unattainable dreams near and dear to most Israelis, both religious and secular.
They will be listed in order of the most likely to the least likely for implementation. The realization of these individual and national Jewish dreams appear to be directly proportionate to President Trump’s promises or, at least, preferences that he had already expressed before and then after his election. The first three will be examined in cursory fashion, with our main focus in today’s article on the fourth passionate pursuit of Israelis, especially the observant (religious) among them. It is, by far, the most difficult goal to achieve. It is one that could lead to a savage Palestinian intifada against Israelis, even to all-out war between some Muslim nations and Israel that globally would generate political, social, and military repercussions.
It is: A Rebuilt Jewish Temple.
Each of the four is an awkward juxtaposition of irritating issues to the world at large, alongside of ardent aspirations for Israelis.
First Issue/Aspiration: Additional Jewish Settlements in the West Bank
Emboldened by President Trump’s election, the Jewish parliamentary government (Knesset) passed the Judea and Samaria Settlement Regulation Law on February 6th. In some prior Eye of Prophecy articles, I’ve written fairly extensively on the alleged “Jewish occupation and Israeli settlements” in so-called “Palestinian territories.” For example, Israeli Occupation … Fact or Myth? (Published 5-16-15).
Time/space in today’s article does not permit elaboration on this Settlement Regulation Law. Suffice to say: Whether the legislative enactment to build more dwellings for Jewish families in the designated region of Judea/Samaria (what is commonly called the West Bank) can or will be implemented depends upon two factors. In order of importance: (1) An Israeli Supreme Court’s decision to endorse the law or to nullify it. (2) The United States, primarily through President Trump’s leadership, agreement not to contest or even criticize existing settlements or more construction, as the former U.S. Executive Staff (Obama’s two terms) had so strenuously objected.
(Shows How Much Land Judea/Samaria–Now Called the West Bank–Takes Up of Israel Proper)
Already there have been mixed signals from the Trump administration, bordering on ambivalence. Not that long ago, a White House spokesperson voicing President Trump’s stance on the matter, said, “we don’t believe the existence of settlements is an impediment to peace.”
Yet in a recent interview President Trump gave to Israeli journalist Boaz Bismuth who writes for the online Israeli news source, Israel Hayom, President Trump appeared to take a step backwards, at least in terms of overt support for Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Before quoting a portion of this interview as posted in Boaz Bismuth’s article of February 12, 2017, I need to bring up an intriguing fact as subsequently published in Bismuth’s article of the very next day, February 13th.
Boaz Bismuth wrote: “After my interview with Trump last week (results of which weren’t published until the February 12th article), one of his senior advisors told me: ‘You see! Our president is a man of his word.’ She was referring to the promise Trump made to me during an interview on the campaign trail. During that interview, on the night of the third presidential debate, I asked to have the honor of being the first Israeli journalist to interview him as president. ‘I promise,’ Trump said.”
Here is one question to and answer from President Trump as contained in Bismuth’s article of February 12th:
“Q. We heard from Washington this week that settlements are not an impediment to the peace process. I guess this is an issue you and Prime Minister Netanyahu are going to discuss?” (Referring to their meeting which has now taken place … this past Wednesday)
“A. They (settlements) don’t help the process. I can say that. There is so much land left. And every time you take land for settlements, there is less land left. But we are looking at that, and we are looking at some other options we’ll see. But no, I am not somebody that believes that going forward with these settlements is a good thing for peace.”
*Note: On the subject of peace, President Trump used that word an astonishing 14 times in this fairly short interview with journalist Boaz Bismuth, and did so in the context of several questions (subjects).
(Writer, Boaz Bismuth)
Bismuth’s final question was: “Finally, Mr. President, do you have anything to say to the Israelis?”
President Trump’s answer: “I have great respect for the Israelis, great respect for Israel. We’d love to see peace. We think it would be very, very good for the Israeli people, and we want a peace that would be everlasting—not just a peace that is going to be good for three months and then the fighting starts again…”
Which I also find intriguing, in light of last week’s Eye of Prophecy article, Peace on Earth … Is It Really Possible? (Posted 2-11-17, the day before Boaz’s interview article of 2-12). Here is an excerpt (in italics) from that Eye of Prophecy article that seems to track with what President Trump said, in terms of his ardent desire to do his and America’s part to bring some measure of peace on earth. Now, if he would just look to the Prince of Peace as the only person who can truly bring harmony to this wicked war-weary world we live in!
A True Peace That Divides
It is belief in and acceptance of the truth of the gospel (Jesus substitutionary sacrificial death on the cross) that sets us free from the penalty of sin and gives us eternal life in heaven, when we will be forever free from the very presence of sin, grief, pain, remorse, hostility, and death itself.
But this truth divides. It separates good from evil; light from darkness; right from wrong; honesty from lies; God’s righteousness given to us from self-righteous efforts of good works that vainly try to gain God’s favor; and true everlasting peace with God from man-made peace that produces only a temporary false sense of security and serenity. A semblance of safety that all too quickly disappears with the next war just around the corner.
In summary of Jewish settlements in the West Bank, it does appear that President Trump is having second thoughts on whether they are an obstacle to peace. If that’s his position and becomes official White House policy, then there will be no difference between his view and that of the misguided notion of our former president as well as many international leaders. I’m referring to the grossly oversimplified impression and outright erroneous thinking that Jewish settlements in the West Bank is the ONLY reason why Palestinians hate the Jews and refuse to come to the negotiating table with the Israelis.
(Actual Jewish Settlements Constitute Less Than 5% of the West Bank)
Second Issue/Aspiration: Moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem
Until the recent Settlement Regulation Law passed by the Israeli Knesset, the potential move of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem was the hottest topic on the tips of the tongues of national leaders and the media all over the world. As expected, many European leaders voiced their objection for the same reasons of the self-fulfilling predictions by Muslim nations and by Palestinians: moving the U.S. Embassy would immediately produce even more hostility toward Israel and intensify violence against Israelis.
The recent Eye of Prophecy article entitled, Is President Trump Wavering on the “Waiver? (Posted 2-4-17), covered this issue at some length. In the context of today’s article, the following excerpt from that article is provided (in italics):
Just last weekend, however, he made a concession that the plan or procedure to move the US embassy to Jerusalem, “is not easy … has two sides to it … there’s certainly a chance of it, absolutely … I’ve always liked the concept of doing it, I’ll tell you that.”
He pledged to, “studying it very long and hard.” And, “I hate to do that because that’s not usually me. Usually, I do what’s right.” (Meaning postponing what he intimated would be a quick executive decision soon after being elected).
He concluded with the promise that he would, “…have a decision in the not-too-distant future.”
I take this to mean that President Trump is unwavering with regard to doing something about his unexpected and out-of-character wavering over “The Waiver.”
*Note: As a reminder, the “Waiver” referred to the clause in the Jerusalem Embassy Act passed in 1995 by a huge margin in both the House and Senate that mandated moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. However, with a contingency clause that allowed the sitting U.S. President to sign a waiver every six months, which would postpone implementation of the law.
The article, Is President Trump Wavering on the Waiver? concluded with:
To relocate the US Embassy to Jerusalem is much more than symbolic. It is a decisive move that could preclude God’s harsh judgment of the United States of America before the Day of the Lord’s return. A return that begins with the remarkable Rapture of believers and ends with Messiah Jesus’s second coming to earth seven years later in power and great glory to fight for Israel and rescue her from imminent destruction.
If President Trump wants to make America great again, the first place (no better place) to begin is with the transfer of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem. For in doing so, he is agreeing with God that Jerusalem, as the City that the Lord loves above all cities, is indeed the eternal heart and soul (capital) of Israel.
Third Issue/Aspiration: Creation of a Palestinian State (So-Called Two State Solution)
First, a clarification that the creation of a Palestinian State within the existing borders of Israel (those national boundaries that separate Israel from Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Egypt) is NOT by any stretch of the imagination something that most Jews want. However, many Israelis—including their Presidential Staff, Department Ministers, Members of Knesset (MKs) and geopolitical experts—realize that a Palestinian State may very well come into existence. If for no other reason than constant international pressure.
If a Palestinian State becomes a reality, what Israelis earnestly hope for is that such a state will not jeopardize Jewish security because of virtually indefensible borders. Nonetheless, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (almost exclusively from pressure exerted by former US President Obama in 2009) had conceded that any peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians could conceivably include a Palestinian State. To counter the inherent danger that a Palestinian State would pose to the Jews, Prime Minister Netanyahu emphatically believes such an Arab state must be demilitarized. To monitor that, would mean freedom of the Israeli Defense Force to move throughout the Jordan Valley and the Golan Heights, as both regions are vital to Israeli security.
The following (in italics) are excerpts from Eye of Prophecy article, Peace or a Palestinian State … Which Will It Be? (Posted 2-27-16).
What the Palestinians want most of all is simply for the international community to take sides against Israel. This would give more credibility to their underlying objective of a Palestinian State not just within certain borders of Israel, but a state replacing all of Israel. Because to the Arab and most non-Arab Muslims, there is no such thing as Israel. All one needs to do is talk to any Palestinian on the street, or listen to their prolific propaganda, or read their school curriculum, or examine their maps of Palestine. For example, some Palestinian officials have recently demanded that all Jews in Palestine should be required to return to the country from which they immigrated (to Israel).
Another huge hurdle would be the actual territorial boundaries of such a Palestinian State. Which is why Israel must agree to such borders for purpose of their national security and national heritage and identity. That means that Israel would not surrender the Golan Heights, nor ever accept an official partition of West and East Jerusalem. Certainly, not to allow the Palestinian capital to be East Jerusalem, which includes Temple Mount. So, if France recognizes a Palestinian State, will they arbitrarily define these borders? Will they demand that the Jews vacate all settlements within the West Bank, including East Jerusalem? Would they unilaterally declare East Jerusalem as the Palestinian State Capital? Will they insist that Israel return the Golan Heights back to Syria? And, if Israel did, who or what in Syria would control the Golan Heights … given the fighting and anarchy already taking place in that war-torn country.
But the biggest obstacle of all: For years and years neither Hamas nor the Palestinian Authority has agreed to just two basic conditions requested by the Israeli government in order for the Jews to consider approval and acceptance of a Palestinian State: (1) Recognition of Israel itself as a sovereign Jewish State. (2) No Palestinian capital in (East) Jerusalem. It’s that simple. Israel is saying that a Palestinian State is feasible if the Palestinians would merely acknowledge the sovereign State of Israel, and agree to put a Palestinian capital anywhere in such a state except Jerusalem. Without these two concessions, all other negotiable issues are irrelevant.
In another Israel Hayom article published on February 12 (three days before Netanyahu was to meet with Trump), journalist Nadav Shragai wrote:
“Will Israel stick to the paradigm of a Palestinian state? Has Netanyahu been using that idea just so he could make it through the administration of former U.S. President Barack Obama, buy himself some time, and then go back to his old stance against a Palestinian state that will endanger regional security and the State of Israel? Or has he fallen in love with the idea? And if he has, was it with the idea itself or as an instrument of diplomacy?
“This question is both relevant and fateful, because all the signs indicate that this time, unlike previous meetings between American presidents and Israeli prime ministers, Trump is open to hearing, and even wants to understand, what Israel’s position is before he decides on policy. Is Israel for or against a Palestinian state? For or against annexation? To what extent? And where? Where in the settlements does it intend to build—in the large blocs? Outside them?
“If Trump’s campaign remarks are any indication, Israel has quite a bit of room to maneuver. Even Trump’s statements in his exclusive Israel Hayom interview that he does not believe that moving ahead with the settlements will benefit the peace process but does not intend to condemn Israel, still leave Israel considerable leeway.”
(Note: he is referring to the interview given by President Trump to Boaz Bismuth, part of which was quoted earlier in today’s article)
Because this week’s Eye of Prophecy began and was mostly completed prior to this past Thursday’s publication of Wednesday’s meeting between President Trump and Prime Minister Netanyahu (and because of time/space in today’s article), I’ll quote only a couple of their comments concerning the subject of a Palestinian State. President Trump’s remarks were somewhat unexpected, but not entirely.
Said President Trump: “I’m looking at two-state and one-state … I’m very happy with the one that both parties like. I can live with either one. I thought for a while the two-state looked like it may be the easier of the two. But honestly, if Bibi (Netanyahu) and if the Palestinians, if Israel and the Palestinians, are happy, I’m happy with the one they like the best.”
He went on to say: “…That includes working toward a peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians. The United States will encourage a peace and, really, a great peace deal. We’ll be working on it very, very diligently. Very important to me also—something we want to do. But it is the parties themselves who must directly negotiate such an agreement … As with any successful negotiations, both sides will have to make compromises. You know that, right?”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks were what I expected him to say, as already alluded to in today’s article written mostly before his historic meeting with President Trump on 2-15-17.
Among other things, he said, “the two prerequisites of peace, recognition of the Jewish state and Israel’s security needs west of the Jordan, they remain permanent … we must make sure we’re not under threat of a Palestinian terror state in our heartland.”
In Netanyahu’s mention of “security needs west of the Jordan,” he is referring to the “West Bank” which derives its name from the western side (bank) of the Jordan River. Of course that includes (all of) Jerusalem, which is the core of the second Israeli prerequisite … an undivided Jerusalem as the Jewish capital of Israel.
He also said: “I don’t want to annex two million Palestinians to Israel and I’ve no interest in them being our subjects. But we must make sure we’re not under threat of a Palestinian terror state in our heartland.”
Fourth Issue/Aspiration: A Rebuilt Jewish Temple on Temple Mount
This is the most controversial and combative issue of all, even among Israelis and Jews the world over. For the most part, it is observant (particularly the Orthodox) Jews who desperately want to rebuild the third Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. The restoration of the Jewish Temple would be a climatic achievement to the rebirth of Israel as a sovereign nation in 1948 and the recapture of their holy city of Jerusalem in 1967. Yet, if construction of the Temple would begin anytime in the near future, it undoubtedly would ignite a massive Palestinian intifada as well as Muslim nations attacking Israel from all sides. Moreover, there would be international condemnation of Israel from virtually every nation—with the possible exception of the United States and Great Britain.
Consequently, nearly all secular Jews and also more than a few non-Orthodox observant Jews (Reformed, Conservative) are opposed or at least reluctant to unilaterally move forward with a rebuilt Temple absent bilateral concessions on Israel’s part. In fact, the Palestinians and Muslims worldwide are adamantly, even violently, opposed to a rebuilt Jewish Temple on Temple Mount. They wouldn’t remotely agree to such a thing unless Israel met ALL Palestinian demands which, at one time or another, have been proclaimed as preconditions to negotiations for peace.
I’m referring to Arab demands that include but are not limited to: A Palestinian State with boundaries that include all of the West Bank and East Jerusalem as the capital of that state, encompassing the Western Wall and Temple Mount itself under Palestinian control. Meaning, of course, that the Palestinians would impose strict regulations (as they currently do) on who and how often the Jews could actually ascend Temple Mount or set foot in a rebuilt Temple. Also return of all so-called refuges from neighboring nations including 2nd and 3rd generation children of those refugees, which now total more nearly six million. And, Israeli eviction from the Golan Heights, which would be disastrous in terms of Israel’s security.
But since the majority of those demands would not be accepted unconditionally by Israel, we’re back to terrorism and war as the preferred strategy and probable action of Muslims in reaction to even an announcement that the Temple would be rebuilt, let alone actual construction.
From the Eye of Prophecy article, A Third Jewish Temple? (Published 4-26-14), I wrote:
For readers of this article that may not be fully aware of the importance of the Temple Mount to both religious and secular Jews, let me paraphrase what has been stated in a couple of previous Eye of Prophecy articles: Jerusalem is the very heart and soul of Israel, and the Temple Mount is the heart and soul of Jerusalem. It is none other than Mount Moriah, where Abraham nearly sacrificed his only son, Isaac; and later the site where Solomon’s Temple and the 2nd Temple were built. Unfortunately, it is also the location of the Muslim Dome of the Rock, built some 1600 years after Solomon’s Temple and 1150 years after Ezra and Nehemiah’s Temple. The Muslims knew full well what they were doing when they erected the Dome of the Rock: deliberately replacing the most holy site of the Jews with a mosque that would usurp all Jewish religious and historical rights to Mount Moriah and to Jerusalem itself. Today, Islamists are rewriting history by teaching Arabs (and all others who will listen) that the Jewish Temples never existed in the first place.
How important is the Temple Mount to the Jews and to Israel? I’ll tell you how priceless and precious it is. Although President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority has imposed several conditions on the Israelis before he will even sit down at the negotiating table, Prime Minister Netanyahu has imposed only one condition: Recognition of Israel as a Jewish State. And, incorporated in that stipulation is the implied and default component that Jerusalem is Israel’s undivided capital. Virtually all other issues are negotiable to the Israelis. But Jerusalem will not be divided between east and west, and the Temple Mount must not be (permanently) annexed by a people who aren’t even citizens of Israel.
Even though I understand why, it’s nevertheless completely amazing to me that Israel relinquished a single square foot of Jerusalem to Jordanian or Palestinian control after re-capturing the holy city in the Six-Day War of 1967 at the highest price possible—the blood and lives of their soldiers and civilians. Why did they give back part of what they won in battle? Sad, but easy answer: To maintain a semblance of peace through appeasement of the Arabs but mostly as a concession to global pressure, including the United States.
Then later in that article:
…I firmly believe the primary reason for this resurgent passion toward Israel’s revered and venerated holy site has much more to do with the crescendo of enthusiasm over the coming of Messiah. An integral part of this desire for His appearance is the eagerness to rebuild the Temple. There are several organizations in Israel whose members are devoted to this 2000-year old dream, none more so than The Temple Institute.
In the introductory pages of their website, The Temple Institute states, “THE SCHOLARS OF THE TEMPLE INSTITUTE have dedicated their lives to raising public awareness of the importance of the Holy Temple in the life of all mankind, both Israel and the nations of the world. The Institute seeks to disseminate this knowledge, rekindle the desire and yearning for the rebuilding of the Holy Temple, and help to prepare as much as possible for the actual rebuilding.”
(Depiction of Jewish Temple Superimposed Next to Dome of the Rock on Temple Mount)
(Depicts Model of Temple in Place of the Dome of the Rock)
A New U.S. President, An Ancient Persian King, and the Next Jewish Temple
Although the desire to build the third Jewish Temple has been increasing in intensity since the Six-Day War of 1967, right now it appears to be stronger than ever before. Moreover, this titanic surge of interest is directly connected to the election of Donald Trump as the United States President. That Trump—with his resolve to get things done which benefit America’s people as well as Jews in Israel and his inner fortitude to speak his mind, to move and shake things otherwise considered unmovable and unshakable—might empower Benjamin Netanyahu and his coalition government in Israel to boldly call for construction of the Jewish Temple.
So much so that Rabbi Yehudah Glick (now a member of the Knesset)—a Temple Mount activist on behalf of Israeli rights to not just visit Temple Mount at will, but also an ardent advocate for a rebuilt Temple—has extended an invitation for President Trump to visit the Temple Mount. A few days later, the Jewish Sanhedrin sent a letter to Trump and also to Russian President Putin, asking them to, “fulfill the Cyrus mandate of enabling the rebuilding of the Temple.”
The above quote was from an article written by Enoch Lavendar, posted in the online source Prophecy News Watch on February 13, 2017.
The article began with, “The Jewish Temple Mount movement are excited over the recent election of Donald Trump. They know very well that rebuilding the Jewish temple in today’s world would be a dangerous and politically incorrect task. In their view, if there is any modern political leader with the guts and determination to stand behind such a project, it could be Donald Trump.”
Lavendar went on to report:
“A number of Christian leaders have been comparing Trump to the Biblical King Cyrus. They point out that King Cyrus was a leader called and appointed by God. If President Trump really has a similar calling to King Cyrus, could it be that God would use this real estate developer turned President to facilitate the greatest property development of modern time—the rebuilding of the Temple?”
(“I will raise up Cyrus to fulfill my righteous purpose, and I will guide his actions. He will restore my city and free my captive people–without seeking a reward! I, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies have spoken! (Isaiah 45:13). This prophecy was made some 150 years before Cyrus was even born!)
*Note: Time and space in today’s Eye of Prophecy article does not permit elaboration on this comparison of Trump to King Cyrus, except to say it’s a big stretch. My main purpose for introducing quotes from Enoch Lavendar on the Third Temple (plus the other three issues that are captivating the undivided attention of Israelis, indeed, the entire world), is to demonstrate that end times prophecies are coming together at a phenomenal providential pace like never before.
As I’ve written several times in prior articles, I believe Scripture contains compelling evidence that it will be Antichrist (Nero) who will orchestrate the rebuilding of a third Jewish Temple through his seven-year treaty with and between Israel and other nations (Daniel 9:27). The remarkable reappearance of an ancient Roman Emperor will utterly amaze a world already stunned by the disappearance of hundreds of millions at the Rapture. Among those left behind, the Jews (particularly the Orthodox) will be the most skeptical that Nero is really Nero, returned from the grave. That is, until Nero achieves the impossible (to the Jews)—none other than a rebuilt Jewish Temple. At that point, some Jews (secular, liberal) will acknowledge him as Messiah. The more observant Jews will hail Nero (as some now do with Trump) as a messiah-type; until he stops the resumed Temple sacrifices half way through the Tribulation.
Although Jewish religious leaders have been careful to say that Donald Trump is not nor will be their Messiah, they believe he will help prepare the way for Messiah.
It’s quite evident why the Sanhedrin sent their invitational letter to President Trump. Rabbi Hillel Weiss, spokesman for the Sanhedrin, said in regard to Trump’s remarkable rise to the most powerful position in the world; Trump has, “…made the eternal Jewish dream a very real possibility … We are poised to rebuild the Temple. The political conditions today, in which the two most important national leaders in the world support the Jewish right to Jerusalem as their spiritual inheritance, is historically unprecedented.”
But, seriously … also send the letter to President Putin of Russia! Why?
Because, allegedly, President Putin had personally prayed for the rebuilding of the Temple during his visit to the Western Wall in 2012. I’ve also written fairly extensively in a few Eye of Prophecy articles about Vladimir Putin and the ulterior motives behind his professed affinity toward Israel. (For example, Beware of the Bear! Posted 3-22-14; Gog, Magog and Leviathan, Posted 1-3-15; The Russians Are Coming! 11-14-15). Because Russia will lead the Gog/Magog invasion against Israel, any ostensible gestures of good will that Putin offers to Israelis will be to accomplish Russia’s true agenda of conquering Israel.
In a final quote from Enoch Lavendar’s article, he mentions the calculations completed by well-known writer Michael Snyder:
“…Trump was born 700 days before Israel became a nation, won an election on Prime Minister Netanyahu’s 7th year, 7th month and 7th day in office, and served his first full day in the White House at the age of 70 years, 7 months and 7 days old.”
Things to Ponder
All four of these ardent Israeli aspirations are connected components of end-times prophecy as found in numerous Biblical passages. In summary they are: (1) Jewish settlements in the Judea/Samaria (West Bank) which is an integral part of the Promised Land; (2) Jerusalem as Israel’s undivided capital, symbolized by nations placing their embassies in the Holy City of the Holy Land; (3) Although there will be Gentiles living in Israel before, during, and after the return of Messiah Jesus, all of Israel within the borders designated by God himself must not be divided into separate states or even territories; (4) A rebuilt Jewish Temple.
These perplexing issues and the Biblical promises of God to resolve them can be succinctly summed up by the following passage.
“…And the people of Israel will come back to reclaim their inheritance” (Obadiah 1:17).
Then the prophet describes in geographical detail where God’s people the Jews will live; which is virtually all of Israel given to them by God as previously delineated by Moses in Numbers 34:1-15 and Deuteronomy 1:7-8. And in the book of Joshua, Chapters 15-19. One day soon, these ancient God-given boundaries, which were much larger than today’s Israel, will be inhabited once again by the Jews.
Read with me:
“Then my people living in the Negev will occupy the mountains of Edom (part of Saudi Arabia). Those living in the foothills of Judah will possess the Philistine plains (Gaza strip) and take over the fields of Ephraim and Samaria (West Bank). And the people of Benjamin will occupy the land of Gilead (Jordan). The exiles of Israel will return to their land and occupy the Phoenician coast as far north as Zarephath (Lebanon). The captives from Jerusalem exiled in the north will return home and resettle the towns of the Negev. Those who have been rescued will go up to Mount Zion in Jerusalem to rule over the mountains of Edom. And the Lord himself will be king!” (Obadiah 1:19-21, parenthesis mine).
In addition to Israel’s boundaries identified by Obadiah, the Promised Land also extended to the Euphrates River (Deuteronomy 1), through modern-day Syria and Iraq!
(Original Land Promised to Abraham and His Descendants the Jews)
Borrowing from and rephrasing the well-known poem penned by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow of our late great American patriot Paul Revere:
Listen my children and you shall hear, the trumpet call of God so imminently near!
“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. So encourage each other with these words” (I Thessalonians 4:16-18).
Hallelujah to the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world!
Long live Israel’s King … Messiah Jesus, King of all kings!