The current Mideast crisis and near civil war in Israel have brought many issues to the light. The eruptions come as Israeli Jews celebrate Jerusalem day concurrently with the end of Ramadan. We know that this is a huge spiritual battle that goes back thousands of years, even to the life of Abraham and his sons Isaac and Ishmael.
Since Islam came to the region over a thousand years ago, tensions and struggles grew. In modern times we can see how God restored the state of Israel, as the Jewish homeland and a nation of many people groups and religions. Israel has laws allowing its citizens to practice religion without hindrance. Jews and Arabs have lived side by side and helped each other now for many years. Arabs are elected to the Knesset, or Israeli parliament, and serve the country in many ways.
Twenty percent of the population of Israel are Arabs. Then there are the Arabs who live in Gaza and the West Bank. All of them are cousins of the Jordanians, descendants of Edom and Moab. There are also many Arab Christians. Many of these despise Jews, but they still get along.
The current crisis is a continuation of the many ethnic, religious, and other cultural differences from the past millennia. There is a spirit behind it that drives the hate and division. Yes, Satan desires to wipe out the ‘apple of God’s eye” and prevent Messiah from returning to Mt. of Olives and Mount Zion. It is God’s desire, and it will happen, that all nations will gather in Jerusalem and pray and worship Jesus. It will happen. But, we must continue to pray.
Psalm 122:7 “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: ‘May there be peace within your walls and security within your citadels.’
This verse details God’s command to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. Great! What does that mean? The Palestinian Arabs are a part of the land of Israel. They also live in Jerusalem. Yes, the nations are in Jerusalem.
Psalm 122 is primarily about ascending to Jerusalem and the house of the Lord. It is about that city prospering for the sake of the name of God and the house of God.
The two-state question continues to be a significant source of division among the peoples of Israel and even the nations. Ultimately, Jesus will come back and set up His kingdom on the earth with Jerusalem as the capital. For now, there is no peace in Israel, Jerusalem or the nations.
The situation in Israel reminds us of the racial problem in America, mostly between black and white. The Arab-Jew situation in some ways is no different as it is a racial problem, but it goes deeper. I am reminded of Jesus’ words about nation vs. nation in the end times. This will only get worse until it ultimately ends when Jesus returns.
There are many prophecies about many wars regarding Israel in the latter days. There is the Psalm 83 war, Ezekiel 38-39, and many others. God also promised to wipe out the Edomites in Obadiah and other prophecies. Yet, there is always a remnant. The terrorists that have fueled the current crisis are driven by demonic structures from places like Iran and groups like Hamas (Gaza) and Hezbollah (Lebanon).
As the crisis continues, we must pray for the peace of Jerusalem and all Israel and the nations’ to come to salvation in Jesus. We must pray that Jerusalem will become a praise in the earth (Isaiah 62:7). We must pray the other nations will not continue to see Israel as the aggressor but rather a nation defending its land and people. Eretz Israel and Am Israel are synonymous. The land and the people of Israel cannot be separated. Pray for more Christians or followers of Jesus to understand this, but likewise for peace and salvation for the Arabs.
When I was in Israel, the Lord gave me a heart for the Arabs. God is bringing salvation to Muslims all over the world, as well as many Jews, through Jesus. I believe that God will use the Arabs to provoke the Jews to jealousy, as Paul wrote in Ephesus.
Many believers visit Israel and the Holy sites and never encounter any Arabs, or they are never really exposed to any of the plethoras of problems that exist there. There exists an infatuation with Jews, Israel, and the Holy land without ever considering what is going on behind the scenes and what is at stake. They visit, put money into the economy, go back home, and never develop a heart to truly pray and intercede for the Salvation of Israel (all) and the peace of Jerusalem.
Not only do we need to see an end to the current crisis, but peace, in Jesus’ name to fall everywhere. We need to see the advances made by bringing Israel’s neighbors into the peace process over the last year flourish. It’s time for the Philistinian land of Gaza to fall in line with God’s desire for her to become a nation worshipping around His throne. While the current residents of Gaza are not descendants of the ancient Philistines, the land of Gaza has long been a thorn in the flesh of Israel.
After the reign of King David, the Philistines ceased to be a nation at war with Israel. The Philistine cities continued to be around until the Babylonian invasion, but King David seemed to end Israel’s fighting. So it is with Israel’s King, Jesus. He is the only one that can end the terror driving from Gaza and all of Israel’s enemies.
Let our prayer be, ‘come Lord Jesus’ and establish your throne in Jerusalem. In the meantime, when you pray for Israel, make sure you don’t forget the Palestinian Arabs and their Salvation and hope in Isa or Jesus.
Let us not sleep or slumber until He makes Jerusalem a praise in all of the earth, according to Isaiah 62!!!!,