Presentation on theme: "Prophesied Long Ago. This morning’s chapter in our exploration of Israel and her future is intended to explain the implications of the present day geopolitical."— Presentation transcript:
This morning’s chapter in our exploration of Israel and her future is intended to explain the implications of the present day geopolitical realities facing modern Israel as understood in light of Bible prophecy.
At the outset, we must try to understand the term “geopolitics” as used in the modern world. Devetak, et al, in An Introduction to International Relations (2012) states, “Geopolitics in general is the study of the effects of geography (both human and physical) on international politics and international relations.”
As such, it is a method of foreign policy analysis which seeks to understand, explain, and predict international political behavior primarily in terms of geographical variables such as: physical location, size, climate, topography, demography, natural resources, and technological advances of the states being evaluated.
To set the stage for our discussion, a brief survey of these specific features of our subject – Israel – is needed – with emphasis on the present day, as already indicated. Israel is located at the center of the earth. If one squeezed all the continents back into their original shape, we could easily see that to be true.
The Pangea As it might Have Looked 300mm Years ago.
Today, it occupies the keystone position between Africa and Asia
Its size at present is smaller than Lake Michigan …
Its potential – its expanded size – shall be perhaps 1.7mm square miles, when its full potential is realized under the Christ of the Second Advent …
Its climate varies from the snowy slopes of Mount Hermon to the crashing waves of the Mediterranean at Tel Aviv, or Acre …
… and from the mountainous Galilee to the lowest exposed point on the earth – the Dead Sea. Dead Sea from Masada Kinneret from Tiberius
It includes forests, woodlands, wetlands, deserts, mountains, seashores, and tropical locations such as those at the Red Sea at Eilat. Lake Hula in Galilee
Its topography is widely variable, allowing some of its citizens to ski on the slopes of Hermon …
… while others, at the same time, dive among the coral and tropical fishes of the Red Sea near Eilat.
Its demography includes people who have immigrated from over 100 different countries of the earth, giving it perhaps the widest range of talent and experience of any nation. It contains enough skilled and classically trained musicians to form at least ten national symphony orchestras.
But it supports perhaps three well-known ones. This is the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Zubin Mehta.
Jews from Arab Countries, From the Year 1948 To 2005 ________ 1,452,150 Predicted In Isa. 11: 11
Young member of Bnei Menashe, of India, where at least 7,000 more Hebrews are located, and are preparing to make Aliyah!
Operation Magic Carpet in 1948 – 1950 brought nearly every Jew out of Yemen to Israel. Many of these folk had never seen a passenger airliner up close!
By no means were all of The Yemenis poor and Uneducated!
Until recently, its natural resources were principally the potash, bromine, iodine, potassium, sodium, and other minerals found in the Dead Sea. Newly mined Potash is stored here, near the Dead Sea works …
A Salt dredger scrapes halogen elements from the black sediment of the Dead Sea floor …
But, today, Israel’s newly discovered oil and natural gas wealth is now estimated to be greater than that of its eastern neighbor, Saudi Arabia.
This map shows The Israeli Extended Economic Zone – The Mediterranean Sea floor over Which it exercises Legal jurisdiction.
Technological advances are another matter. For a country its size, Israel has proportionately more scientists and engineers than any other country. Their talents vary widely – from cyber technology to oil shale fracking advances to water purification to aerospace science to economic theory and practice.
Its research, centering in The Technion, and other high quality universities, leads the world in medicine, physics, chemistry, arms development, cybernetics, forest-, water-, and land-management, and even in economics. A population of six million Jews competes successfully with the United States in computer sciences and cyber technology.
Its advances in military developments are both inventive and spectacular. This Israeli-designed and manufactured battle tank is the Merkava (Chariot)– and is equipped with a Trophy Defense System …
Israel has developed an entire fleet of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and markets them to many non-hostile countries, bringing much revenue to the country. This is the Heron.
The IAF is taking delivery on some of the first F35 Joint Strike Fighters.
The Iron Dome anti-missile missile is now deployed to many parts of the country.
But the Arrow anti-missile system is unique in its ability to intercept missiles in the stratosphere!
Many ground- breaking Advances in medicine Have been made here at The Medical Faculty Of The Technion, on Mt. Carmel, near Haifa.
The Israeli government uses its research centers as incubators for private industry under contractual agreements. This approach reduces the time for scientific advances to be utilized in meaningful ways. This IDF facility, The Advanced Technical Training Center now being built in The Negev, will give them an even greater edge.
A Particle Beam Accelerator at Rehovot’s Weizmann Institute of Science.
Challenges to Israel But there are great challenges to Israel. It does not dwell safely in its Land. In addition to the six million Jewish citizens of Israel now in the Land, there are approximately 1.5 million Arabs living within Israel’s current borders. And beyond its borders, there are hundreds of thousands of violent Arabs living at their front door - in the so-called “West Bank” area of the country. And over a million Arabs in the Gaza Strip, comprising the Hamas political ideology.
In Jordan to the east, there live several million “Palestinians” who despise Israel and want to take its land. To the north, in South Lebanon, the militant Arabic forces of Hezbollah threaten Israel every day. In the north and northeast, the rebels now fighting the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad, are threatening to encroach on Israel in the Golan Heights – and openly proclaim Israel is “next” after they have deposed Assad.
And further afield, the nation of Iran is pressing ahead to develop nuclear arms which it vows to use to wipe Israel off the map as soon as they are available. We shall address many of these political components of Israeli geo-politics at this time.
Israel consists of a religious state among many other “religious” states of a different kind. The remnant of Jews who inhabit Israel have led a threatened and hazardous existence from the start. Without exception, ALL the states “round about” Israel (a heavily utilized scriptural term) are its enemies, and desire its destruction – both of its people and government – and Israel’s lands for their own.
This is one of the principal desires of those enemy states as voiced by the psalmist Asaph, who, in Psalm 83, verse 4, wrote their latter day mantra with absolute accuracy: They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance. We know that this is an End Time utterance, partially because the nation of Israel has existed as “Israel” only since 1948.
A short review reminds us that Great Britain’s General Edmund Allenby drove the Ottoman forces out of Palestine in 1917, freeing the land from Ottoman oppression, and awarding it to the custody of Great Britain under the Balfour Declaration. Britain was given a mandate to govern this area at the San Remo Council in 1922, and to develop it toward becoming a Jewish State.
Geopolitical considerations written by the ancient prophets were beginning to appear in earnest! The year 1917-18 marked the prophesied end of “The Times of the Gentiles” as mentioned by Jesus in Luke 21: 24. After initially favoring a Jewish State, Great Britain reneged on its promise in the face of pandemic Arab opposition to any such arrangement.
Immigration was severely limited and a distinct Arabic bias became evident among the British overlords. It was partially expressed by the formation of Trans-Jordan by Winston Churchill, in 1922 – a decision which depleted the future Jewish State by 78%!
This, we note in passing, was the FIRST PHYSICAL DIVISION OF THE LAND.
Tensions mounted month by month until the Mandate became unmanageable by the British; they decided to give The Problem of Palestine back to the UNO. They departed the country on May 14, 1948. Britain continued its decline in the years following due, we believe, to its having betrayed the Jewish Cause. 1947-48 was a landmark Jewish year. The United Nations Organization had voted to partition Palestine in late 1947. That plan proposed a Jewish State and a separate Arabic State within the remaining Mandatory, west of the Jordan River.
We note that this is THE SECOND PHYSICAL DIVISION OF THE LAND
When the day of Britain’s Departure arrived, the Jews Proclaimed their State; The Arabs refused to accept the Partition Plan. They wanted the WHOLE Land – and would Fight for it.
Six Arab armies immediately fell upon the hapless Jews from three points of the compass: The War of Jewish Independence lasted until a truce was finally agreed upon in August, 1949. At that time, the Jews had overreached their UN borders by almost 100%. The Arabs lost much territory which had been legally awarded it by UN decree … their FIRST GREAT DEFEAT.
The Arabs did not cease their aggression – their lust for Israel’s land. In June, 1967, President Nasser of Egypt had made many vicious threats against Israel, and moved legions of his troops near Israel in the Sinai Peninsula; in addition he closed the Straits of Tiran at the entry to the Red Sea between the Sinai and Saudi Arabia, refusing to allow Israeli ships to access Eilat.
Israel mounted a pre-emptive attack on Egypt and Syria at the same early morning hour of June 5 th, smashing Egypt’s air force parked at their air bases' within the first45 minutes of this war!
It simultaneously attacked Syrian positions and Jordanian assets in the West Bank. By June 10 th, Israel had won its war in lightning fashion, conquering … All the West Bank and Jerusalem, from Jordan, The Golan Heights, from Syria … and The Sinai Peninsula, from Egypt..
Israel, after the Six Day War Israel had handed Islam its SECOND GREAT DEFEAT!
Still the Arabs round about Israel did not give up. Please note that the active aggression of Israel has so far been from a limited number of Arab nations – those located between the Nile and the Euphrates Rivers! This is an important part of the present geo-political challenge of Israel with her neighbors. Still the Islamic people round about had not learned their lesson. They mounted yet another massive assault upon God’s people.
Their third assault upon Israel began on Yom Kippur, in October, 1973, with a surprise attack across the Suez Canal by Egyptian foot soldiers, and later by Egyptian armour. Syria attacked from the north in the Golan Heights.
Syrian General Staff Head Quarters, after an Israeli Attack in Damascus
At the end of the conflict, Israel had soundly defeated its attackers again, their THIRD GREAT, DECISIVE DEFEAT IN 25 YEARS! It appeared that Egypt now had learned that it could not defeat Israel. Soon, Egypt’s President Anwar Sadat began to respond to calls for a peace treaty with Israel. He and PM Menachem Begin signed this treaty in November, 1977.
Sadat, Jimmy Carter, and Begin at Washington Signing of Israel/Egypt Peace Treaty
It became a “cold” peace in every way, but kept the armies separated from that point forward until today. Soon, Israel signed a peace accord with Jordan’s King Hussein: July, 1994.
But Israel’s relations with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has been less productive. During all these years the PLO has prodded and poked Israel in every aggressive way – by terrorism and by diplomacy.
A series of secret negotiations led to the Oslo Accords, signed in Washington, in November, 1993.
So today, we view Israel ’ s lonely position as an island of sanity and courage in a raging sea of Islamic turbulence – Its “ sea and waves, roaring ” in this parochial sense, Israel and its neighbors reflect the general condition of the larger world. Islam is 640 times Larger than Israel!
So, we conclude this series with a discussion of Israel’s Geo-Political Realities Today One is challenged either to describe, or even to comprehend, the present exposure of Israel to its Islamic enemies. And beside these, most of Europe and much of the rest of the world is fiercely antagonistic to Israel.
But even in this case, we may be absolutely certain that Israel and her citizens are never again to be uprooted from their land – never again scattered and destroyed. How may we be sure of this? We have the Almighty’s indelible word in the text of Jeremiah 24:6 For I will set mine eyes upon them for good, and I will bring them again to this land: and I will build them, and not pull them down; and I will plant them, and not pluck them up.
Now … THAT promise is an iron-clad guarantee that they shall never again be displaced. But it really says nothing about their eternal welfare, or their relationship to their Father. However, the following verse adds the redemptive factor to their destiny as well! Jeremiah 24:7 And I will give them an heart to know Me, that I am the LORD: and they shall be My people, and I will be their God: for they shall return unto Me with their whole heart.
So we are assured of the final outcome for God’s blessed people, Israel. And we are even given clear information as to their pathway of survival and victory! These references are found in multiple prophecies. When objectively examined they make perfect sense!
Even though Israel’s position at this moment seems extremely untenable in human terms, it is not so – for we are not dealing simply with human agencies in these End Time transactions of Israel with her enemies … all those green areas of the previous map containing 1.2 billion Muslims – ALL of which want Israel destroyed. If we have not perceived the supernatural aspect of Israel’s founding and development – that it has been consistently brought about by angelic agency, thus is founded by the Almighty – we have had our eyes closed tightly!
Daniel 12: 1 reveals to us that at a certain time (at the end of the last King of the North) … shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
That “time” was at the end of the Ottoman occupation of the Land – 1917-18, as already reviewed. It is logical to believe that Michael the Archangel was instrumental in the Holocaust – the Nazi persecution and murder of the Jews of Europe – in order to place FIRMLY in Jewish hearts the indelible will and necessity to return to God’s Land in great numbers. We must accept that because that is what happened.
We also strongly feel that it was the invisible work of Michael which made that return possible over the strong objection of many peoples, and even of the British Mandatory power which controlled the Land. Without the Shoah, the Jews of Europe and the world should have continued their drive to become “assimilated” among the nations; it was not God’s plan!
His people were unstoppable! Their tenacity was relentless! Their goal had to be attained! And they returned almost completely on their own initiative! This, too, is geo-political reality!
The Arab Spring – and Winter Now we consider details of Israel’s neighbors and how they are conforming to the prophecies of the End Time.
Algeria – Things looked black enough for Israel before the rude awakenings of January, 2011, when an obscure native of Algeria was arrested for selling vegetables from a cart without a license. He doused himself with gasoline and immolated himself in a public square in Algiers. This almost unnoticed event in the Western world initiated The Arab Spring.
Soon Algeria’s “moderate” ruler was overthrown, and replaced by a strong Islamic faction. Algeria was a “moderate” Islamic state under its old king; now it is strongly Islamic!
Other Arab nations observed the ease of this overthrow and decided that their despotic rulers also must be overthrown. Libya – Libya followed the pattern previously set in Iraq, where Saddam Hussein had been dethroned and hanged.
They set about to overthrow Colonel Mummar Ghaddafi – and within weeks this was indeed accomplished with the assistance of Europe and the USA.
Egypt, and the Moslem Brotherhood – Now Egypt, viewing Libya’s success, began an uprising against its Western-favored President Mubarak. Within a few days he had been arrested and his government put down. It was replaced by one of the most despotic groups in the Muslim world – the Muslim Brotherhood, whose candidate was “elected” to be president. Mohammed Morsi was his name; Sha’aria was his game! Morsi almost immediately moved to overthrow parliament, and to institute Sha’aria Law in Egypt. The army and the populous did not favor that move; so the army overthrew Morsi and took him into custody and will subject him to a trial.
The army now controls Egypt with one of their own as acting president, but the people don’t like that, either, so the demonstrations and unrest continue on and on. They say they want their “democratically elected” president back. But why? They didn’t like anything he did. So we see that nearly exclusive Islamic trait of brothers fighting brothers over insignificant circumstances when considered in the larger picture – every man’s sword against his brother! Egypt is in chaos, beginning to fulfill the prophecy of Isaiah 19, where that is predicted for the End Time. Isaiah foretells that Egypt shall be in extreme turmoil (which it now is), and that it shall be ruled by a “cruel lord” (which it is, and in our opinion, shall be in future).
The general population of Egypt also hates Israel, and wants to abridge or destroy the peace treaty with Israel.
Hamas – The Brotherhood strongly supports Hamas in the Gaza Strip, which was directly spawned by the Egyptian Moslem Brotherhood. They have sent fighters to the Syrian conflict to try to overthrow President Assad.
The Israelis Abandoned Gaza Several years ago. It has been converted into an hostile country in Israel’s front yard!
Hezbollah – Another violent Islamic Fundamentalist group exists in south Lebanon. Hezbollah has been a client incubated by Iran as proxy against Israel in the north. These fighters have been rather quiescent since Israel attacked them a few years ago, but have used the lull to build their missile capability to an estimated 90,000 ground to ground missiles.
These missiles are all pointed south toward Israel, many of them secreted in hardened underground bunkers.
But a curious thing has recently befallen Hezbollah. Their loyalty to Iran and to Syria is so great that they have deployed some of their missiles against the Syrian rebel forces fighting adjacent to the the Lebanese border north of Israel. It is another case of every man’s sword against his “brother” as the Sunnis and Shi’ites battle each other in this conflict! Still other conflicts in Israel’s neighboring countries are vital to understand.
Iraq and Al-Qaeda – The Allied invasion of Iraq (2002) and its conversion to a democracy has not worked well. Now that Western forces have left Iraq, it is rapidly drifting under the control of Al- Qaeda – the Islamic Fundamentalists of Osama bin Laden, and rabid enemies of Israel.
One of Iraq’s longest borders is with Syria. Note relative sizes of Syria (smallest) to Iran (largest), with Iraq sand- wiched between them.
Iraqi Al-Qaeda Factions in Syria – A large Al-Qaeda faction in Iraq is now joining with similar Fundamentalists in Syria; both are in conflict with President Bashar Al-Assad of Syria, who in turn is supported by Iran and Russia by daily arms and cash shipments. This faction appears strong enough eventually to overthrow Assad, and to exert its control over Iraq as well – because the Western powers have decided to assist the rebels, including Al-Qaeda, and give them arms and missiles.
However … the Allies are about to make a terrible mistake! In arming the rebels, the West is unwittingly arming opponents of Israel, because the Syrian rebels have already announced that after Assad, they will assault Israel to assist the Palestinians!
Assyria – These two nations – Syria and Iraq – today answer to Assyria of old. The prophecy of Micah 5 concerns “Assyria’s” attack upon Israel at some point in the future. We believe we can see some positive development by subversives of these two nations at this time – coalescing into “Assyria” of the End Time. The Almighty One is moving His plan forward on all fronts, in preparation for the final showdowns of this aion.
Al-Qaeda factions in both Iraq and Syria are now linking together, and have even formed a mutual territory of both Syrian and Iraqi territory on the border. That faction is strengthening greatly.
Turkey – The Islamic nation of Turkey for years was friendly with Israel, and cooperated both militarily and in shared intelligence. But the Gaza blockade-runners of a few years ago drove a wedge between Turkey and Israel. Turkey now claims to be pacified, but its leaders continue to vilify and denigrate Israel. As a result, Israel is now developing close relations with Greece. Turkey is threatened by the fighting in Syria, as well as their own enclave of Kurdish people within both Turkey, Iran and Syria – an ethnic group which is unfriendly to all three powers, and wants its own territory. Turkey has formed safe zones on its border for millions of Syrians who have fled the fighting in their country.
Jordan – As already mentioned, Jordan’s population is overwhelmingly “Palestinian,” and all these want to return to “Palestine” (read, “Israel”) and reclaim their properties and lands. Jordan today is comprised of Ammon (the capital of Jordan is AMMaN), Moab and parts of Edom. Prophecies against these three ancient enemies are numerous and decisive.
Isaiah 11:14 predicts that … (Israel) shall fly upon the shoulders of the Philistines toward the west; they shall spoil them of the east together: they shall lay their hand upon Edom and Moab; and the children of Ammon shall obey them. This has almost occurred on three previous occasions, but a final assault by these upon Israel shall leave them destroyed. Obadiah clearly says in verse 18, … Esau shall be for stubble (that is burned to a crisp!) … and there shall not be any remaining of the house of Esau.
That prophecy indicates the complete absorption of all these territories as well as others as Greater Israel, or, the Kingdom of Christ!
The “Palestinians” – Having cited Obadiah, we can see the Spirit’s definition of the Edomites as specifically nominated in verses 19 and 20, where six pin-pointed areas are named as the habitat of Esau (or Edom), and these areas are the specific areas today where the PLO controls the “Palestinians” and is most concentrated! By this alone we can certainly identify the “Palestinians” of today with the Edomites of history! The accuracy of this little prophecy is astounding – especially since we see its exact depiction in existence in this End Time of conflict with Israel!
Iran – Iran is biblical Persia. Persia is a prominent factor in the Gogian Conflict of Ezekiel 37 an 38 – a face-off which will take some time yet to develop, in our opinion. But, as surely everyone knows, Persia is pursuing the construction of nuclear bombs and aerial vehicles with which to deliver them to any point on earth, including the USA. But Iran’s primary target is Israel. They claim the oppression (sic) of the Palestinians by Israel will not stand; that Iran will wipe Israel off the map with only a few bombs. They discount any Israeli ability to defend itself, and do not believe Israel can effectively attack Iran to stop its nuclear proliferation.
Iran is now reported to Have missiles With enough Range to reach Germany and France – and Israel, of course.
They know now whereof they speak! For Israel has a “secret weapon” which the Iranians cannot conceive … the Archangel called Michael (He Who is like God). We believe Michael shall continue to protect Israel, and enable it to do great things in its self-defense, before the Second Advent of the Lord from heaven. We fully expect Israel to be enabled to strike an overwhelming blow upon Iran from the air in the very near future, either retarding or destroying their nuclear program. This of course will further infuriate Iran, giving them even more impetus to cooperate with the Russian Gog and the other outlying Islamic powers who gather with Gog against Israel in that day – events to be elaborated by later speakers in this series.
But Israel has another “secret weapon” which is also unsuspected by almost everyone except you and me, dear brethren! That is the Christ of the Second Advent – the One Who now sits at His Father’s right hand, but shall then descend to the earth, to begin His intervention in the affairs of men, beginning overtly with the house of God in Israel.
But COVERTLY, His first attention shall be devoted to His spiritual people of Israel, who are defined by Jesus’ revelation to John on Patmos, as those of Revelation 5:9 - And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; 10 And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
In the 19 th of Revelation, we read the sublime description of events which come immediately after the Marriage Supper of the Lamb – a depiction of Faithful and True, seated upon a white horse, Who in righteousness, doth judge and make war. Upon His head are many crowns, and His vesture is sullied with blood; and His name is called The Word of God.
Following after him, also mounted upon white horses, and clothed with garments of gleaming white linen, are the armies of heaven. These are the redeemed of all past ages, now having had their natures changed to immortal, armed with swords for their mouths like unto His, going forth into the earth for close warfare and conquest. Isaiah 63 gives a vivid, action-filled picture of their first appearance to the unsuspecting enemies of God and of His people. It relates a phase of the conquest of Edom, parallel to Obadiah, and is written almost as a moving picture script.
This great throng comes as One Man, often called the Multitudinous Christ – Christ now entirely ONE with all His brethren, for they are his Bride; they consist of His own nature and capability, his justice and righteousness, his ability to change the affairs of men forever. Isa 63:1 Who is this that cometh from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah? this that is glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength?
I that speak in righteousness, mighty to save. Isa 63:2 Wherefore art thou red in thine apparel, and thy garments like him that treadeth in the winefat? Isa 63:3 I have trodden the winepress alone; and of the people there was none with me: for I will tread them in mine anger, and trample them in my fury; and their blood shall be sprinkled upon my garments, and I will stain all my raiment.
Isa 63:4 For the day of vengeance is in mine heart, and the year of my redeemed is come. Isa 63:5 And I looked, and there was none to help; and I wondered that there was none to uphold: therefore mine own arm brought salvation unto me; and my fury, it upheld me. Isa 63:6 And I will tread down the people in mine anger, and make them drunk in my fury, and I will bring down their strength to the earth. -30-