- Jim Fletcher
Well, he’s done it. Anyone who’s paid attention to the
Israeli-Palestinian conflict has known for some time that Prime Minister Ehud
Olmert has changed his thinking.
After a stint as mayor of Jerusalem for 10 years,
and a long-time Likud party member, Olmert a few years ago bolted the party so
that he could follow Ariel Sharon into the newly formed Kadima (“forward”)
Party. Olmert, like most politicians, showed himself to be an opportunist. It
was fairly obvious that Sharon
was unhealthy. He made Olmert vice premier; predictably, after less than a year,
Sharon’s health nose-dived and Olmert found himself as the
leader of Israel.
Just this past week, Olmert indicated that Israel would
have to get used to the idea that Jerusalem will be re-divided again (a united
city under Israeli sovereignty since 1967) once a final-status agreement is
reached with the Palestinians.
This is a stunning revelation, given that every Israeli
prime minister since Levi Eshkol has forcefully declared that
will always remain the undivided capital of Israel.
Even Labor leaders made such declarations. Now Olmert, once a hawk, is now
making dovish statements about concessions to the Palestinians. It is
One of the great stories of our time is the international
obsession with pacifying the Palestinians. Large numbers of the Arab population
in Israel and Gaza
have a pathological hatred of Jews. A few days ago, 1,000 Palestinians given
temporary housing by the Egyptian government torched said housing, all because
they weren’t being allowed to go back and live in the hell-hole called Gaza.
Palestinians have committed tens of thousands of terrorist
acts over the years and show their contempt for Jews and the West on a daily
basis. Many of them are barbaric.
has often seen posters of the so-called “martyrs,” the
shaheeds, who in reality are
The international community, however, is
obsessed with donating billions of dollars to the Palestinians, repeatedly. The
recipients have shown time and again that corruption and twisted thinking
squanders every dime. Still it goes on.
While visiting the Center for Special Studies
(north of Tel Aviv), I saw a display of captured terrorist weaponry and
propaganda. One of the items was a punching bag made from an American flag.
Another item was an image of Christ being crucified by the Israeli army. These
kinds of things are part of Arab culture in the territories, Gaza, and throughout
the Arab world.
Yet Olmert wants to allow the Palestinian
Authority to establish the capital of Palestine in East Jerusalem. He cites demographic concerns,
stating that in another generation or two, the Arabs will outnumber the Jews.
Or, failing that, Israel
will have to operate as an apartheid-type state. Of course, there are studies by
people with the opposite view.
The important thing to remember is that while
pro Israel Christians fret about such events, the Bible never changes. In point
of fact, the Bible doesn’t mitigate against the existence of a Palestinian state
in the end. Ezekiel 36 mentions that Israel’s
enemies will be gleeful that “even the ancient heights are ours.” This might or
might not be a reference to the “West Bank,” which we know as the mountains of Israel.
Likewise, Amos 9:15 assures us that at the
last, with Jews living in their ancient homeland, that they will never be
uprooted again. As current events change and ebb and flow, we must not keep our
eyes on said events, but rather on Scripture, which has never been wrong and
will never be wrong.
A situation could develop in which part of
the “West Bank” is given to the Palestinians, but
Jewish settlers remain. Whatever geopolitical solution is cobbled together by
weak politicians, God is well able to see His plans through.
Zechariah discusses a battle in which “half
of the city” of Jerusalem
is taken. Israel
and the Jordanians have fought over
twice in the last 60 years; however, a state of Palestine, with its capital in East Jerusalem, would fit such a scenario in a
climactic final battle.
Whatever, the Bible is clear that Israel
will survive. Jesus said that those who overcome to the end will be saved. We
live in momentous times, times of privilege for Christians. Let’s all do our
best to pray for each other, pray for the peace of Jerusalem,
and pray for That Great Day!
As believers, we should not fear current
political developments, whatever they may be. If it looks as if something is
“going against the Bible,” we must remember that human perspectives can be
wrong, but the Bible is never wrong.
Current politicians, terrorists, and
diplomats cannot thwart the plans of God. They can only play the roles that He
has assigned them.
Jim Fletcher is a member of the executive
committee of the National Christian Leadership Conference for Israel (NCLCI); he
can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org