To Liberate or To Conquer?

“Fifty years ago we returned to the heart of our capital and our country, and 50 years ago we did not conquer it, rather we liberated it.”

This stirring statement was part of a timely message from Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. The subject, of course, was Jerusalem. The date was May 21st. The occasion: beginning festivities of the 50th anniversary of Yom Yerushalayim—Jerusalem Day—that would subsequently take place on the 28th day of Iyar (Jewish calendar). Which was this past May 24th … Gregorian calendar. Between this inaugural speech from the Prime Minister and the actual celebration of Jerusalem Day, President Donald Trump visited Israel (May 22-23).

(US President Trump and Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu)

On that fateful day of Iyar 28, 1967 during the now famous Six-Day War, the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) fought its way into Jerusalem and took control of what is currently called East Jerusalem—which contains Temple Mount and the Western Wall. In fact, Israel’s unfathomable victory over Syria, Egypt, Lebanon, and Jordan resulted in winning what was, what should be, and one day soon will again be ALL of Israel—the Golan Heights, Gaza Strip, Sinai Peninsula, and Judea Samaria (also called the West Bank). In just those historic six days, Israel tripled in size from the hastily imposed cease-fire boundary lines after Israel achieved a miraculous victory in their 1948-49 War of Independence.

As I’ve written in several previous Eye of Prophecy articles: Not long after the Six-Day War, Israel relinquished functional control of the Gaza Strip (now controlled by the terrorist group Hamas) and most of the West Bank (under jurisdictional authority of the Palestinian Authority—a bitter rival of Hamas) back to the Arabs. Around that time the Arabs began referring to themselves as Palestinians, as does nearly everyone in today’s world. Later, the Israelis returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt. However, Israel retained control of the Golan Heights, as this crucial mountainous terrain is absolutely vital to preserve Israel’s safety.

(Map of Post-1967 Six Day War … Subsequently Israel Kept Control Only of the Golan Heights)

Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Descriptive Choice of Words

In his message, Benjamin made a distinction between Israel’s Six-Day War accomplishments of “liberating” Jerusalem as opposed to “conquering” the Holy City. This is much more than just a matter of semantics; it is a crucial correction of the misperception harbored by so many in today’s world, not the least of whom are many leaders of Western nations.

It was the country of Jordan that illegally seized and annexed the eastern part of Jerusalem and the West Bank during Israel’s 1948 War of Independence. Although Israel won that war, she capitulated to international pressure which had extended a de facto concession for Jordan to exercise supremacy over the West Bank and east Jerusalem, including Temple Mount. Israel could have (and in hindsight should have) continued to fight for more defensible boundaries; however, the Israelis agreed to a truce in order to get on with their individual and national life—the Jews right of return and rebuilding Israel in at least West Jerusalem and other parts of Israel already part of the UN resolution partition.

In fact, Jordan is a Johnny-come-lately country that didn’t even exist before the 20th century. As is Iraq, Iran, and other Middle Eastern nations, some of which existed—like Iran, formerly Persia—but under a different name, government, and territorial boundaries.

Benjamin Netanyahu is making a valid distinction between conquering and liberating, because liberation is actually what happened in 1967. This concept is crystal clear in historical, military, political, and even moral terms. Which is:

You don’t conquer land that is yours to begin with. You liberate it.

The Problem: Almost every nation on earth (even the United States under its previous administration) doesn’t apply this maxim to Israel.

Although the facts should be clear to anyone with an open mind (with even a minimal grasp of Israel’s ancient and modern history), Benjamin Netanyahu felt compelled to voice the obvious: Jerusalem, as the eternal capital of a Jewish nation, was not conquered in 1967. Rather, it was liberated as the Biblical God-given and rightful capital of Israel.

Benjamin’s recent emphasis on this difference was another legitimate and necessary effort to remind Western nations like the United States of Israel’s rights in perpetuity, especially concerning Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. But also to refresh collective memory that the incessant Palestinian and Muslim rhetoric—claiming the Jews have illegally occupied a portion of the West Bank and (especially) Temple Mount in East Jerusalem—is a distortion of history. More than a misrepresentation; it is an outright lie.

In prior Eye of Prophecy articles, I have made comparisons of inherent God-bestowed rights to Israel and Jerusalem to our own American Revolution in which we won our liberty from British tyranny. More specifically, parallels between Israel giving up land that rightfully belongs to them and the idea of America returning land that we won through a just war of freedom.

Here is another analogy: On July 16th, 1790, Washington D.C. was officially declared the capital of the United States of America. But England wasn’t quite done with its former colonies. Thus began the war of 1812, battles of which were fought over a wide area of eastern United States and also Canada. Toward the end of this three-year war, the British seized control of Washington D.C. burning the Presidential Mansion and the Treasury to the ground.

The British then marched north to “conquer” Baltimore which led to a ferocious fight more famously remembered for the incredible American defense of Fort McHenry near the Chesapeake Bay. Even a more well-known feature of that battle was the eye-witness account penned in the form of a poem by Francis Scott Key. In 1931, the U. S. Government made that poem/song America’s National Anthem, The Stars-Spangled Banner.

After the Battle of Baltimore, the armed forces of the United States led by General Andrew Jackson defeated the British at the Battle of New Orleans, which resulted in England’s surrender.

Did we “conquer” Washington D.C.? No, we liberated it, because it was already our capital. As much as America values England’s contemporary partnership and cooperation, should we consider returning the eastern half of Washington D.C. to Great Britain? Absurd idea, wouldn’t you agree.

In like manner, Israel should never return any more than she already has to pre-1967 boundaries by relinquishing ultimate control of Judea/Samaria or East Jerusalem (including Temple Mount) to Jordan or to Jordan’s proxy, the Palestinians. If that means nixing the idea of a Palestinian State, then so be it.

Here the analogy ends, or rather it doesn’t go far enough. The difference is that Jerusalem has been Israel’s capital for 3,000 years—since King David united the twelve tribes of Israel and all of Israel began to keep the God-ordained festivals in Jerusalem, the city chosen by God. In fact, God’s very presence (called the Shekinah glory) returned to Israel, this time in the magnificent Temple built by David’s son, Solomon.

Whereas, the United States liberated Washington D.C., a city that had been our capital for only 24 years.

More Comments from Israel’s Prime Minister & Also from Israel’s President

Benjamin Netanyahu went on to passionately proclaim:

“With the heroism of our fighters and the pride of our people, Jerusalem has once again been united, and therefore I say today to the world, in a clear and unequivocal voice that Jerusalem has always been and will always be the capital of Israel. The Temple Mount and the Western Wall will always remain under Israeli sovereignty. But despite the strong and unique relationship with Jerusalem, there are those who attempt to deny our undeniable bond with it and who brazenly portray us as foreigners in our own land in our own capital.”

He concluded with: “It is not our attachment to Jerusalem that demands an explanation, but the disgraceful attempt to expropriate our ties to Jerusalem and sovereignty in Jerusalem.”

At this same rally which was attended by the United States Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, Israel’s President (more of a ceremonial position in Israel’s government, with the Prime Minister as head of the government), Reuven Rivlin declared that Jerusalem is the “eternal capital of Israel.”

He said: “Jerusalem is not the problem, Jerusalem is the solution. There are those dreaming of political solutions who attempt to hold for Jerusalem a ‘trial of Solomon’ and to tear the city limb from limb. But those who speak of dividing the city will bring down doom upon Jerusalem and its inhabitants.”

In that regard, President Rivlin echoed the word of God spoken through the prophet:

The Lord continues to speak concerning the last days, of which I am completely convinced this generation is part (see recent Eye of Prophecy articles, The Balfour Declaration … Beginning of the Omega Generation, Part I & Part II, posted 5-13 & 5-20-17):

“Thousands upon thousands are waiting in the valley of decision. There the day of the Lord will soon arrive. The sun and moon will grow dark and the stars will no longer shine. The Lord’s voice will roar from Zion and thunder from Jerusalem, and the heavens and the earth will shake. But the Lord will be a refuge for his people, a strong fortress for the people of Israel. Then you will know that I, the Lord your God, live in Zion, my holy mountain. Jerusalem will be holy forever, and foreign armies will never conquer her again” (Joel 3:14-17).

A Surprising Old Testament Passage

Now I’m going to quote a passage concerning Jerusalem that, at first glance (the 2nd half of the passage) may surprise you … particularly in the Biblical and historical context that Israel and Jerusalem were given to the Jews by God, himself.

“On the holy mountain stands the city founded by the Lord. He loves the city of Jerusalem more than any other city in Israel. O city of God, what glorious things are said of you! … Regarding Jerusalem, it will be said, ‘Everyone enjoys the rights of citizenship there.’ And the Most High will personally bless this city. When the Lord registers the nations, he will say, ‘They have all become citizens of Jerusalem!’” (Psalm 87:1-6).

This is a prophecy of the end-times (of which this generation is part). The registering (identification and accountability) of the nations will culminate when Messiah extricates the nations that supported the apple of God’s eye from those who fought against Israel, as depicted in the separation of the sheep from the goats prophecy announced by Jesus himself (see Matthew 25:31-46).

As explained in the two aforementioned Eye of Prophecy articles, the beginning of the last (Omega) one-hundred year generation took place with the Balfour Declaration of 1917. The next generational milestone (70 years) was established when Israel became a sovereign state in May, 1948, made possible by the UN Resolution in November, 1947. Jews living in “Palestine” and hundreds of thousands who would later immigrate to their Promised Land became citizens of Israel. But so did thousands upon thousands of Arabs who decided not to flee Israel as ordered by the Arab armies that attacked the Jews immediately after Israel became a state.

Arabs who refused to become Israeli citizens occupied the West Bank which, as we saw earlier, was illicitly seized by Jordan. Likewise, Arabs in the Gaza Strip refused to become Israeli citizens and remained under the control of Egypt for several years. Yet, the phenomenal fact remains: Not only Jews but some of their Arab neighbors, who at least in principle recognized the newborn State of Israel and its right to exist, became citizens of Israel and Jerusalem. Which was the beginning fulfillment of the passage in Psalm 87 just quoted … Gentile citizens of Jerusalem alongside the God-ordained citizenship of his chosen people, the Jews.

Then more Arabs became citizens after the 1967 Six-Day War, with the majority of Arabs (non-citizens) remaining in the West Bank and Gaza Strip under the newly formed Palestinian Liberation Organization 1964, later called the Palestinian National Authority (1993 or thereabout).

Both of those italicized name designations are erroneous and misleading. To what or from whom would the Palestinians be liberated? Before 1967, both they and the Jews were still under Jordanian West Bank jurisdiction. Yet, Yasser Arafat’s intention was unmistakable: His newly formed PLO was designed to and would attempt to rid not only the West Bank but all of Israel of all Jews. This was his warped and sinister view of Palestinian liberation.

Once again, but in reverse: You can’t “liberate” land that doesn’t belong to you.

Likewise, with the Palestinian National Authority (now more accurately referred to as just the Palestinian Authority). You can’t have a “national” government unless there is a nation in the first place. As we know: there isn’t any such thing as a Palestinian State. Even though the Jews already had gained some measure of autonomy in their War of Independence, they still were not completely free of Jordanian, Egyptian, and Syrian governmental and military control over key cities and areas of Israel, not the least of which was much of Jerusalem, including Jewish holy sites.

As you will soon see in more detail: In amazing fulfillment of the Leviticus Chapter 26 Seven Times Over prophecy, the actual result of the Six-Day War was, in fact, the liberation of Jews from Gentile domination in the Holy City of the Holy Land and other areas of Israel. Plus some twenty years earlier, world-wide (except for a few, mostly Islamic, nations) recognition of the Jewish right to return to Israel as granted by the UN Resolution of 1947. The ultimate purpose of that resolution was return of their original homeland to the Jews or the Jews back to their home—either concept was justified and necessary. To free them from national or international subjugation and persecution; most of all that something as horrendously cruel and malicious as the Holocaust would happen Never Again.

Both before and after the Six-Day War, the Israelis generously extended offers of citizenship to all Arabs who would agree to recognize Israel as a sovereign state and undergo the procedure of citizenship (that all democratic nations offer). Hundreds of thousands of Arabs accepted that offer … despite the fact that most of that group still despise Jews just because they are Jews. More hundreds of thousands flatly refused such an offer for the same reason they turned down territorial rights afforded by the Balfour Declaration and statehood rights extended by the UN Resolution of 1947. The reason: They want all of Israel, without a single Jew living there.

Not until Messiah Jesus returns to set things right and establish his Kingdom of justice and peace will Israel and Jerusalem complete God’s prophetic destiny for Gentile citizens to live willingly and peacefully alongside the majority citizenship of Jews.

The Six-Day War of 1967—A Year of Jubilee & the End of Gentile Domination of Israel

Here are a couple of excerpts from two recently published online articles concerning Israel’s 50th (Jubilee) anniversary of Yom Yerushalayim.

From an article entitled, Jerusalem: 50 Years of Reunification, posted on May 20th in Aish.com, written by Rabbi Benjamin Blech:

“Hard to believe that it was 50 years ago that Jews and Jerusalem were at long last reunited. It took God all of six days to create the world; it took modern-day Israel the same brief length of time to liberate the holiest city in the world from the hands of those who never understood or accepted its true sanctity.

“The Six-Day War was by all accounts a contemporary miracle. Israel’s enemies made clear their intent. It was not land that they wanted as much as Jewish lives. The Arabs assured the world they would finish the task Hitler started. The Holocaust was the unspeakable genocide of six million…

“Military analysts are still stunned when they study what actually happened. Generals at West Point have been quoted as saying that Israel’s victory can simply not be understood from the perspective of strategy in historic warfare. One officer, who understandably chose not be quoted by name, simply said, ‘There is no way we can teach the reason behind Israel’s success because Israel was clearly aided primarily by God—and we are not permitted to teach God at West Point.’”

After presenting some statistics on Israel’s population in 1948 and other facts, Rabbi Blech concludes his article with:

“That is why it is so important to mark another milestone of modern-day Israel—a milestone we may now celebrate on the occasion of our 50-year celebration of Yom Yerushalayim. The population of Jews in Israel today at last exceeds that number so starkly identified with tragedy. There are now more than six million Jews who make Israel their home. In the Jubilee year of Jerusalem’s reunification more than six million Jewish souls in Israel joyfully proclaim the reality of the biblical message of the 50th year: the land belongs to God and our generation has become witness to the divine decision to reunite us with Jerusalem”

Next, some excerpts from an article entitled, The World Needs to Drive Out Destructive Fantasies, posted May 25 in the online Op-ed site, Gatestone Institute. The article was written by Shireen Qudosi who is Director of Muslim Matters at America Matters and a contributing writer for the online news source, The Federalist. She is a Sufi Muslim of Afghan and South Asian ancestry who writes primarily about Islam!

(Shireen Qudosi)

I read her post after completing this week’s Eye of Prophecy article up to this point; it was the first time I had read anything by Shireen Qudosi (or even heard of her). However, it’s obvious that, even as a Muslim, she is willing to examine the phenomena of Israel and the Jews in the context of real history, not history rewritten by Muslims or Palestinians that much of the world buys into or at least listens to.

*Note: She, too, along with Rabbi Blech, employs the term “liberate.” Whether they borrowed that word from Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech or not, it’s good that they understand what really happened in the Six-Day War. Since Benjamin Netanyahu emphatically pointed out that Israel liberated rather than conquered Jerusalem, I’ve read other articles in which the author appears to deliberately use the term liberation. I had not seen this before. Writes Ms. Qudosi:

“How we talk about religion matters. It we want to be effective in moving forward, it is important to be truthful. The truth is that Israel won the Six Day War, thereby, liberating eastern Jerusalem from Jordan, which had seized it illegally when it attacked Israel in 1948-49 and expelled all Jews from eastern Jerusalem. Israel has earned the right to reclaim Jerusalem fully.”

(Note: She also uses the term, “reclaim” concerning Israel’s right to Jerusalem. I, too, have used that word in some prior Eye of Prophecy articles … along with reunify, recover, recapture, reestablish, consolidate, and once or twice liberate. But never, to my recollection, “conquer” or “conquered.”)

She continues:

“If we are going to ‘reset’ the Middle East, we need to reset our thinking as well, starting with accepting that Israel has a right to exist. That includes confronting calls for the annihilation of the Jewish people, and contesting the dishonest re-imagining of borders that quite literally erase Israel from the map. Israel exists and Israel has a legitimate claim to Jerusalem.

“Then there is the issue of Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Muslim devotion to the Temple Mount stems from a story in which the Islamic Prophet Muhammad is said to have dreamt traveling from Mecca to Jerusalem to the Heavens beyond space and time (and back) all in one night … The Temple Mount rests on historically Jewish territory.

“Critical Muslim thinkers drive out fantasies from our faith. Alongside us, the world must drive out the fantasy that Jerusalem is not Israel’s capital. Jerusalem is the heart and soul of Israel. To deny Jerusalem as a part of Jewish and Israeli identity is the same as denying Mecca as inherent to Muslim identity”

*Note: It’s good to see someone else (and a Muslim at that) expose Muhammad’s imaginary journey from Mecca. I wrote an entire article on this subject, as it is this mosque on Temple Mount that Muslims and Palestinians allege is the religious and racial link between Islam and the alleged right of Arabs to claim Temple Mount as their own. This despite the fact that neither the PLO Charter nor the Fatah Constitution (main administrative branch of the current Palestinian Authority) even mentions Jerusalem, let alone called for Jerusalem as a Palestinian capital. The idea of (East) Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian State is a fairly recent ploy used by Palestinians (and now by Islamic nations) … in the past three decades or so.

You might want to check out: The Myth of Al Aqsa Mosque, posted 4-16-16.

(Depiction of Muhammad’s Mythical Winged Horse)

Revisiting the Historical Impact and Significance of the Six-Day War of 1967

With Israel’s recent 2017 celebration of what many Israelis, especially Rabbis—alongside of a few Gentile evangelicals like myself—consider to be the second Jubilee in Israel’s modern-day rebirth (the first Jubilee being 1967), I would like to take you back to a series of Eye of Prophecy articles published in the early days of this website.

I’m referring to the trilogy of articles entitled, Seven Times Seven (to the 4th Power)! Posted 1-25, 2-1, & 2-8-14. Followed by the Eye of Prophecy article, The Omega Generation (2-15-14).

Here I would like to provide some excerpts from Part III of Seven Times Seven (to the 4th Power), beginning with the opening paragraph of that article. In italics:

1967 … What a year! The Six-Day War … What a war! Like me, some of you remember exactly where you were when you heard the news of Israel’s stunning victory. Some of you were not yet born, but you read about it in the history books. I recall thinking: How can any nation win a war in just six days? That’s unheard of … simply not possible. On top of that we’re talking about the tiny nation of Israel, surrounded and vastly outnumbered by Arab nations on all sides. Well, we believe it because it happened. It’s true, and Israel will never be the same again. Why not? What is the dramatic difference in Israel after the June, 1967 Six-Day War?

Before we find answers to that question, just a little more suspense! I’m talking once more about the incredible prophecy in Leviticus that was revealed and explained in last week’s article; whereby the mathematical calculation of seven times seven (to the 4th power) beginning in 516 BC leads to the year 1967.

(Note: That trilogy of articles is based on an amazing disclosure or discernment the Lord provided me in 2006 regarding a “hidden gem” of a prophecy found in (of all places) the book of Leviticus. It’s an application of God’s “seven-times over” discipline of Israel a total of four successive times to actual years (history) beginning with the end of the 70-year Babylonian captivity to the year 1967—when the Six-Day War occurred. I did not start with 1967 and work backward; I had no idea to what year the seven times over paradigm would take me. You’ll need to read those articles for a more comprehensive understanding.)

More excerpts from Part III:

I vividly recall the Six-Day War … where I was and what I was doing when the news flashed around the world. Since then, I and many students of Biblical prophecy and current events have better understood the tremendous significance of Israel’s victory. But no one appreciates the impact of those six days in June and the aftermath more than the Jews, both religious and secular.

The Six-Day War took place 50 years–a Jubilee period of time–after the first milestone in Israel’s modern-day rebirth as a nation. I’m referring to the Balfour Declaration of 1917, in which Lord Balfour of Great Britain paved the way for a Jewish national homeland in Palestine by validation of the Zionist movement initiated by Jewish leaders Theodor Herzl and Chaim Weizmann. These founding fathers of modern-day Israel believed that the only solution to the “Jewish Question” was a return of the Jews to Palestine. In 1922, the League of Nations approved the Balfour Declaration via a “Mandate for Palestine.” This was the beginning of Jews returning in increasing numbers to the Holy Land and resettling the land originally given to them by God, himself. No other nation or land on the earth has a title-deed signed, sealed, and delivered by God, as does the Promised Land known as Israel.

Sadly, return of the Jews and Israel’s statehood came too late to avoid the greatest disaster in Jewish history: the Holocaust during World War II … which constituted the full and final expression of the seven times over discipline.

However, were it not for the horror of the Holocaust, there would have been no United Nations approval of a Jewish Homeland (November, 1947); then the subsequent establishment of the State of Israel in May, 1948….

At this point in that article, I further explained the stunning significance of the Six-Day War, including the fact that it was the end of God’s long discipline of Israel; therefore, ending Gentile domination of Israel.

(Convoy of Israeli Troops … Six-Day War)

Continuing with Seven Times Seven, Part III:

Not until the Six-Day War, did Israel really possess and then demonstrate the capacity to take the offensive against Arab armies. Meaning, that their military (IDF) was strong enough to recapture Jerusalem from the Jordanians, to take back the Western Wall and Temple Mount. They were skilled enough to literally take the high ground of the Golan Heights from Syria, and equipped enough to retake Gaza and Sinai from Egypt.

This unquestioned ability to defend herself and, if necessary, to take the offensive, was reconfirmed in the brutal, yet victorious Yom Kippur War of 1973. Since then, no Arab nation or coalition has dared use their armies or conventional warfare to attack Israel. Instead, they have resorted to terrorist attacks, mortar/missile launchings against civilians, propaganda, and BDS strategies.

What does all this mean? I believe the evidence is indisputable, not the least of which is the seven times over prophecy ending in the year 1967. Now that this mysterious prophecy has run its full course, Israel and the Jewish people are no longer under the thumb of Gentile nations. The Times of the Gentiles ended in 1967! This is an astonishing sign of the end times; that is the physical rebirth and restoration of Israel, substantial return of millions of Jews to the land of their ancestors, and the miracle of such a small country and small population being one of the top military powers of the modern world.

For the first time in nearly 2,500 years, Israel has the military resources to fight its own battles and even conduct preemptive strikes to silence the ominous threats of extinction by her enemies, such as a nuclear Iran. She is a beacon of democracy in a Middle-East full of totalitarian Muslim regimes that fight among themselves and have only one thing in common: the malicious desire to wipe Israel from the face of the earth. She is powerful enough to be a deterrent to terrorist groups and quite capable of making rogue rulers think twice about use of WMDs. Before 1967, this kind of prestige, power, presence, and position was not available to Israel. When God ended Israel’s discipline in 1967 (7 x 7 x 7 x 7), he also ended the Gentile nation’s conquest, oppression, suppression, dominance, and defeat of Israel.

Things to Ponder

Earlier, I mentioned the Jewish calendar date that Israelis mark and celebrate Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Day), the very day that Jerusalem was liberated from Jordan and for Jews and all Israeli citizens. That date was the 28th day of Iyar. This year, 2017, is the 50th anniversary of that monumental milestone of Israel’s end-times destiny. The fixed date on the Gregorian calendar was June 7th, 1967. This year Iyar 28 fell on May 24th.

During preparation and writing of this week’s Eye of Prophecy article, the prophetic significance of the 28th day of Iyar caught my attention. And now I see why. It fits perfectly with a major component of today’s article—the Seven Times Over phenomenon administered four times consecutively by God in his discipline of Israel, just as the Lord said would happen in Leviticus Chapter 26.

What is that significance?

The Numbers: There were four phases of the Seven Times Over Paradigm. Seven times four (7 x 4) equals 28!

Jerusalem was liberated and the Gentile domination of Israel ended on the 28th day of Iyar!

Meaning of Iyar: The original Hebrew name for what was changed to Iyar, was the month of Ziv.

Ziv means “light” or “glow.”

Right away you can see the meaning as applied to the end of God’s discipline of Israel, the final (4th) and most devastating phase of which was exile to Gentile nations and complete dominance by those nations. This time of “darkness” in Israel’s history suddenly and dramatically gave way to the light of Jewish liberty in 1967. It was the restoration “glow” of Jewish independent sovereignty and reunification of Jerusalem with the rest of Israel.

The word Iyar is left over from an extinct Semitic language in Mesopotamia. Iyar means to “blossom” or “to bloom.” You remember part of the jingle: April showers bring May flowers. (Hebrew month of Iyar overlaps with the Gregorian months of April, May, June … mostly May).

How fitting is that to what happened when Jerusalem was liberated!

Before the Lord warned his people what would happen if they disobeyed and abandoned him, he gave them a glorious hope of blessings if they trusted and followed him.

“If you follow my decrees and are careful to obey my commands, I will send you the seasonal rains. The land will then yield its crops, and the trees of the field will produce their fruit” (Leviticus 26:3-4).

There were other promises, but the above verse says it all, in terms of not only the Jews themselves but also the land of Israel “blossoming” as never before, as the light of a liberated Jerusalem shone once again.

“Arise, Jerusalem! Let your light shine for all to see. For the glory of the Lord rises to shine on you. Darkness as black as night covers all the nations of the earth, but the glory of the Lord rises and appears over you” (Isaiah 60: 1-2).

“The time will come, says the Lord, when the grain and grapes will grow faster than they can be harvested … I will bring my exiled people of Israel back from distant lands, and they will rebuild their ruined cities and live in them again. They will plant vineyards and gardens; they will eat their crops and drink their wine” (Amos 9:13-14).

(Example of Israel’s Amazing Agricultural Accomplishments)

Not only has God ended the discipline of Gentile domination of his people, he has rejuvenated Israel agriculturally, economically, culturally, and militarily as it was in Israel’s glory days.

Though there are still difficult times ahead for Israel (indeed, for the whole world) during the Great Tribulation, this restoration will reach its zenith when Messiah Jesus—whom most Jews do not yet accept or recognize as their Messiah—returns to rescue Israel one final time.

And Israel will be able to defend herself as she fights before Messiah arrives and then alongside of Messiah during the Battle for Jerusalem.

“On that day the Lord will defend the people of Jerusalem; the weakest among them will be as mighty as King David! …” (Zechariah 12:8).

“And so all Israel will be saved…” (Romans 11:26).