By Bill Salus
On April 19, 2010 Israel celebrated 62 years of independence. On that same day American president Barrack Obama announced the United States may leverage its veto power in the United Nations against Israel in the future. His threatening statement, which represents a major departure from previous U.S. foreign policy, was designed to coerce Israel into Obama’s vision for Middle East peace.
The very next day the BP Deepwater Horizon explosion occurred in the Gulf of Mexico killing 11 workers and injuring 17 others. This explosion created what is being touted as the world’s largest oil spill and is still ongoing today. Estimates are that hundreds of millions of gallons of oil have already seeped into the gulf and no definitive end to the seepage is presently in sight.
Approximately one week earlier on April 14, 2010 the UK watchdog agency called the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) banned Israel from including pictures of the Western Wall in promoting tourism to citizens of the UK. The ASA is the UK’s independent regulator of advertising across all media including TV, internet, sales promotions and direct marketing. The reason given is that it implied Israel possessed legal sovereignty over East Jerusalem, something the Arab League and apparently even the UK government contests.
Oddly on the very same day the Eyjafjallajokull Iceland volcano erupted grounding all flights and about one-million people from the UK and much of Europe. The apparent reward for the ASA’s potential adverse affect on Israeli tourism was that all tourism departing from or arriving to the UK remained at a complete standstill. All flight traffic remained grounded for approximately 2 weeks until the volcanic dust settled.
Meanwhile, as the ashes were falling upon the UK creating a nauseous odor over parts of Europe, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, “Yom Hashoah”, ceremonies were concluding in various parts of the world. These ceremonies commemorated the millions of Jews reduced to ashes from being incinerated during the Holocaust. Many in Europe still recall the horrific smell of those charred Jewish ashes. Dust for dust and ashes from Auschwitz might best describe the irony.
Interestingly, on July 1, 2010 I landed at Heathrow airport in the UK for a three week TV and speaking tour and was surprised to see almost as many Muslims in their religious garb as there were westerners. The Muslim population is rising 10 times faster than the rest of UK society. Presently the Muslim community has grown to about 2.5 million inside of the entire U.K. population of approximately 62 million. Islamic (Sharia) law has been adopted and is being integrated into various municipalities within the UK. (image of a previous Muslim protest in London)
Apparently the growing number of Muslims in the UK has shaped the ultra liberal politically correct thinking of the ASA. As such, it seems the God of Israel may have punished the UK by temporarily grounding all flights, which caused the loss of millions of dollars in tourism and other related revenues.
My delightful UK tour host, Pastor Bob Waughman an associate of Prophetic Witness Movement International, (PWMI) informed me of this recent ASA incident. He and many of the end time’s experts in the UK are correlating the coincidental timeliness of the Iceland volcano and the BP oil spill with the curse for curse in kind clause of Genesis 12:3. For those of you not familiar with how God’s Gentile foreign policy toward Israel is finding application today, Bill Koenig’s “Eye to Eye” book is a must read.
The obvious lesson to be gleaned by humanity from these seemingly coincidental episodes above is “do unto Israel as you would have done by Israel’s God Jehovah unto you”. However, is there an even greater lesson to be learned? If there is a connection to be made between mistreatment of Israel resulting in an almost instantaneous repercussion to the perpetrator, then one might safely assume that God is warning the world that it’s time to bless the Jew or else! Perhaps the days for Mideast diplomacy have ended.
Underhanded political dealings with inherent potential for harm to the nation of Israel seem to be the order of the day. A case in point occurred recently on June 29, 2010 when President Obama beseeched Saudi King Abdullah to help America win the war in Afghanistan. Abdullah sought compensation for this favor in the form of Israel accepting the Saudi Peace Initiative of 2002. Obama informed Abdullah that, if necessary, he would force Israel to accept this Arab initiative. The centerpiece of this Arab initiative is the territorial withdrawal of Israel back to its pre 1967 borders.
However, on July 6, 2010 Obama met with Netanyahu in Washington and no mention of this important discussion with Abdullah was alluded to during their photo op statements to the public. This seems surprising considering the powerful imposing implications to Israel should Obama pressure Israel in the near future toward this end. Additionally, Obama briefly mentioned the sticky topic of Nuclear Non Proliferation during the press conference with Netanyahu but didn’t elaborate upon his position about the subject. Obama simply acknowledged that Israel has unique security needs.
This surprised many of us familiar with the announcement made by Obama in May of 2010 that he wanted Israel to “come clean” on its nuclear program and come into compliance with Nuclear Non Proliferation. Reportedly, Netanyahu was infuriated with Obama’s flip-flop in this nuclear matter at the time. This represented a dramatic change from the former Bush administration’s position with regard to Israel and Non Nuclear Proliferation. Israel has adamantly shunned all past Arab demands to come clean about its nuclear program.
Amidst the backdrop of all the above, Iran enriches uranium, Hezbollah procures more rockets, Hamas still reigns in Gaza, and Syrian President Bashar Assad warns “no peace can be achieved with the present Israeli government”. Stepping outside the political spin and rumors of war hovering over Mideast matters, one gets the startling impression that the time for politically brokered land for peace deals has expired.
It is historically understood when diplomacy ends war begins. Conversely it is prophetically understood the stage appears to be set in the Middle East Theater for the Israeli war prophecies described Isaiah 17:1, Psalm 83, and Ezekiel 38 & 39 to occur soon and sequentially. The question is can a temporary peace be achieved prior to the fulfillment of these Israeli war prophecies? I think the fact that the cursing aspect of Genesis 12:3 is fulfilled almost instantaneously evidences that war, not peace, is coming next in the Holy Land.
Posted by AUTHOR / LECTURER at 11:47 PM
By Bill Salus
This article introduces two important Prophecies regarding the twin brothers of the Bible, Jacob and Esau. Jacob was renamed Israel in Genesis 32:28 and he fathered Israeli descendants. Esau, Jacob's older twin brother, fathered the Edomites according to Genesis 36:1,9. Invaluable insights into the roots of the present Palestinian - Israeli conflict can be gleaned from understanding these twin prophecies.
Presently the international community desperately seeks to join the Israelis and Palestinians at the hip in a peaceful “Two State Solution”: a Jewish State, and a Palestinian State. Did you know that there once was a time when the ancestors of these two people groups, the Israelis and the Edomites, successfully operated in a “Two State Solution” of sorts? However there were two prophecies written in ancient times that foretold of both Israel’s and Edom’s national decline, and at the time of the fulfillment of these two prophecies, their operational “Two State Solution” disintegrated.
Hosea issued the first of the two prophecies, and Jeremiah along with Obadiah issued the second. Hosea declared that the Israelites would be declassified from “My people Israel”, to “not My people”, and Jeremiah, and Obadiah predicted that the Edomites would become “small among the nations”.
Hosea’s prophecy regarding Israel
Now when she had weaned Lo-Ruhamah, she conceived and bore a son. Then God said: “Call his name Lo-Ammi, For you are not My people, And I will not be your God. (Hosea 1:8-9; NKJV)
Jeremiah’s and Obadiah’s prophecies regarding Edom
I have heard tidings from the LORD, and a messenger has been sent among the nations: “Gather yourselves together and come against her, and rise up for battle!” For behold, I will make you (Edom) small among the nations, despised among men. (Jeremiah 49:14-15; RSV)
The vision of Obadiah. Thus says the Lord GOD concerning Edom: We have heard tidings from the LORD, and a messenger has been sent among the nations: “Rise up! let us rise against her for battle!” Behold, I will make you small among the nations, you shall be utterly despised. (Obadiah 1:1-2; RSV)
In a twist of fate, twin brothers Jacob and Esau would have their descendants share in a similar divine disciplinary action. The two historically infamous peoples, the Jews and the Edomites, would experience their national decline in the same place and at the same time. Both ethnic groups were conquered by the Roman Empire on or around 70 A.D. in what turns out to be the final fulfillment of these two important Bible prophecies.
Back then these two populations co-existed semi-peacefully in a “Two State Solution” of their own. The Jews inhabited Judea, and Samaria, which comprised the Northern and Southern kingdoms of Israel, and the Edomites occupied “Idumea”, and were known as the Idumeans, which was the Greek word for Edomites. Idumea / Edom encompassed land in Southern Israel, Northeastern Sinai, and Southwestern Jordan. The Jewish capitol was Jerusalem, and the central Idumean city was Hebron approximately 19 miles to the south. At the time the Idumeans and Jews both practiced Judaism, evidencing a common bond between them.
When the Romans conquered Jerusalem and destroyed the second Jewish temple in 70 A.D., they also fought against the Idumeans. According to the historian Josephus, many Idumeans were either killed, or sold into slavery, and ultimately about 40,000 remaining Idumeans were freed by Caeser to go wherever they desired enabling them to keep their ethnicity in tact. (1) Indeed by 70 A.D. Edom / Idumea had undeniably been made “small among the nations”.
The attached map represents the layout of the region around 135 A.D. at the time of the Bar Kokhba Jewish revolt. This map depicts Idumea still in existence as a recognized territory. As such one might safely presume that Idumeans still resided in the subject land on or around 135 A.D. (2) This suggests that at least some of these 40,000 freed Idumeans continued to reside, and repopulate in the territory of Idumea.
To further understand the declassification of the Israelites to “not My people” it is important to read the “My people Israel” chapter in my book Isralestine; The Ancient Blueprints of the Future Middle East. For now it is important to recognize that the declassification of the Jews into “not My people” began at the rejection by the Jewish leadership of Jesus Christ, and found its final fulfillment in the destruction of Jerusalem and the second Jewish temple in 70 A.D. at the defeat by the Romans. Lastly the assumption of the title “not My people” was not prophesied to be a permanent condition, and ultimately the Jews would be reclassified as “My people Israel”, and furthermore “sons of the living God”. (3)
Although Edom was made small among the nations in 70 A.D, Edom continued on a gradual decline. Shortly thereafter, Edom seemingly disintegrated as an ethnic group off the pages of further history. If it were not for the end times prophecies contained in Psalm 83, Ezekiel 25:14 and elsewhere regarding the restored Edomite element, there would be no further cause to remember them. They would be for all intents and purposes extinguished, however the Bible suggests they have merely been “made small among the nations”, and will resurface in that reduced national condition in a final confederate effort, described in Psalm 83, aimed at the destruction of the nation Israel.
Herein lies the problem; the Middle East conflict is the derivative of these two former nations attempting to reclaim the land of Israel-Palaestinia. This may seem an over-simplification of the matter; however it is at the root of the conflict. Both formerly notorious nations who experienced their decline at the same-time and in the same-place, are attempting to pick up where they left off in 70 A.D. They are seeking to reestablish themselves now, centuries later, at the same-time and in the same-place.
When Israel became a nation again in 1948, the Palestinians for all intents and purposes became a people. They became the refugees of Palestine as a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. The surrounding Arab nations protested the reestablishment of the nation Israel and confederated in a war effort against the returning Jewish people. They instructed the Arabs residing within Israel at the time, to vacate temporarily until the Jewish nation was destroyed, at which time these departing Arabs could return into the land.
Amongst the Arabs who left Israel at the time were some of those who had descended from Esau, i.e. the Edomites. History reports that the Jewish people were victorious, and these Edomites became numbered among the refugees of Palestine. Hence at the time they became refugees residing in tents. The Edomites were for all intents and purposes at the time the “tents of Palestine”, or as they are called today, the Palestinian people.
Baqaa refugee camp of Palestinian Refugees (Photo: 1949 UNRWA)
The present plight of the Palestinians is, in large part, the result of the failed Arab war against Israel and therefore primarily the responsibility of the surrounding Arab nations. These Arab nations have done little to absorb and assimilate them into their lands, but have done much to use them as pawns against the developing nation of Israel. Hence we see Israel aspiring to become “My people Israel” again, which is prophesied to successfully occur, and Edom wanting to become greater than the tents of Palestine, which will likely never occur!
Edom will never be great among the nations, as they were permanently “made small among the nations” and that is the best condition they will ever experience. In fact, because of their present attempt to curse the developing nation of Israel, the Edomites will be extinguished as a people according to Obadiah 1:18. In other words the Palestinians of today will likely never nationally ascend much beyond a refugee condition. Listen to what the Psalmist labeled them as in the coming Arab war against the Jews, which is still to find its final fulfillment.
1 - Do not keep silent, O God! Do not hold Your peace, And do not be still, O God!
2 - For behold, Your enemies make a tumult; And those who hate You have lifted up their head.
3 - They have taken crafty counsel against Your people, And consulted together against Your sheltered ones.
4 - They have said, “Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation, That the name of Israel may be remembered no more.”
5 - For they have consulted together with one consent; They form a confederacy against You:
6 - The tents of Edom (Palestinian Refugees) and the Ishmaelites; Moab and the Hagrites;
7 - Gebal, Ammon, and Amalek; Philistia with the inhabitants of Tyre;
8 - Assyria also has joined with them; They have helped the children of Lot.
(1) The Works of Josephus: Book of the Wars 6 Chapter 8
(2) The Bar Kokhba Revolt map in this chapter http://www.studylight.org/se/maps/browse.cgi?st=170
(3) Hosea 1:9-10, and regarding “My people Israel” Ezekiel 25:14, 36:12, 38:14,16, 39:7
(4) Jeremiah 49:15, Obadiah 1:2
Posted by AUTHOR / LECTURER at 12:14 AM