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Caught in the Cross-Fire
The Australian March 9, 01
The pall of smoke is not as great as when the first atomic bomb made its dynamic debut in 1945, even if pre-empted some 2500 years by Joel, foretelling the pillar of smoke, as we have noted often enough before (Joel 2:28-30), for the era to culminate in the grand Jewish restoration to the Lord, so often predicted in the prophets (as in Joel 3:20-21, Psalm 72, Micah 7). Even in the intense brevity of his coverage there, Joel includes this feature, and what is more physically symbolic of our Age, than that! not very much.
It is not however that sort of proclamation of the time-table of events in which we are now looking. That was epochal - it had to come as a part of a scenario for the consummation, and its battles and belligerences, its refinements and its pollutions (of the spirit of many, for the former, of the atmospheric in the latter, as in Revelation).
What we now see is that scenario in which it was placed as a salient part, worthy of inclusion in the brief coverage of the prophet.
Now, however, with that impact past, what we have is still the same CONTRAST between the pall of smoke, violence, dissension, tension, contrary messages, belligerencies, harsh words and implacable hostility, in the Middle East, and the peace of Christ which could even still the sea, as well as the hearts, and was made available BY HIS BEARING the hostilities to the uttermost, of those who, being astray in the guidance systems of the nation, ensured there would and indeed COULD be no peace for it (cf. Isaiah 49:7, 53:1-6).
Nor has there been! from that day till this. War, destruction, sobriety, sadness... as in Deuteronomy 32, as we have seen.
Now that the nation is back in place, as forecast (SMR Appendix A and check Index for the last few volumes which have rather specialised in this), and now that it has been victorious as shown in SMR Ch. 9, and in the massive victories there detailed, yet there is still the involvement in the relentless international tension machinations, the same as ever, while the plot develops towards its conclusion in the OTHER phases biblically predicted before Christ comes to earth to JUDGE!
THAT is NOW.
The purpose of this news item is simple:
It is international displeasure and discontent as the people of Israel STAY, in the midst of the furores and flurries, not least now, the unspeakable effort of Palestinians to capture some part of the tiny residue of the PALESTINE accorded by nations after World War I to Israel to be, from the slender margin of it which is all the Jews have left. This they do with JORDAN as ONE WHOLE having been taken out of Palestine for the substantially Moslem country which now occupies it, and with repeated endeavours to subdue the Jews entirely, on the part of the Arabs, while hostilities from Hamas, freely acknowledged, attest the reliability of the consensus sought: zero or negative as far as their statements appear to concede!
With these reflections
complete, read of the outline scenario in Zechariah 12, where those who
bother themselves with
is IN. He is the leader of the new Jewish Government. By a little thing, the failure Sharon
1) of the enormously pressurised NEARLY-PEACE proposals of President Clinton, something ALMOST achieved, but not quite, you see, not quite, and
2) of the simple Labour Likud government possibility, again by a (seemingly) little thing - Barak could not find it suitable in complexion, in the inter-relationship with Likud:
we have a new government situation.
The attitude to Jerusalem seems exceptionally clear now: The Australian reports that Ariel Sharon, new Prime Minister, departed from his text, which read "the united eternal capital of Israel under our sovereignty", to actually state instead, the Jewish people’s "eternal" capital, something often enough declared before, but with more emphasis not so recently!
The other point is also very simple: the LORD is planning to return there (Zechariah 14, Micah 7, Isaiah 59), and to deliver the (so far) distanced nation, but by then a returning one, which in the interim He defends by pure grace.
So the plans to the contrary do not happen. This new Government of Israel seems less likely to instal an internal assault on them (not of course INTENTIONALLY, but effectually), than that which well might have been!
The Australian today,
An honest and
genuine partner, we shall prove, declared
This was systematically sneered at, it seems, by Hamas, who tell of prepared bomb persons waiting to renew incitement, violence and terrorism, and that of course, likely to be on civilians, which is one way of showing just what your morals are, and with what wisdom anyone might cohere with you! It is not merely that it is unwise to collaborate with people who play the knife; it is the PRINCIPLE of knives as talk alternatives, ON CIVILIANS for the sake of implementing a combined religious and civic desire, of arms not in battle and its results, but in market places.
Taunting and seeking to
abort law and order requires some reaction; but initiating violence on the
domestic area of
Hamas is reported to
want what they call Israeli-occupied territories,
Who however has OCCUPIED most of
as a homeland ? Arabs and Moslems.
What then is the call ? For
EVEN MORE disintegration of the little residue currently serving as
Jewish homeland, and even more sequestration of
It is somewhat fashionable to ignore the promises and provisions of God, as detailed of this matter in the last few volumes, for example from Divine Agenda and Galloping Events. It is not however a fashion that God shows any sign, index or indication of viewing with placidity. Indeed, that is what He SAID in Zechariah 12 and 14, around 2500 years ago; that is what He forecast from the days of Moses (Deuteronomy 32:43), as we have earlier shown in detail.
When you dealing with the Eternal, you have to realise that time is one of His inventions, time as we know it, when you have to WAIT for tomorrow. All the tomorrows of the earth are already known to Him (Ephesians , Acts 15:18, Isaiah 46:10, 44:25ff.). Indeed, He has supervised their construction.
It is only fair to note
something else. It is this: that the failure of Israel to hallow the name of "that
prophet" whom Moses foretold in Deuteronomy 18, whose word was to be followed
categorically, or the offence of neglect of it required of those guilty of
this, by the Lord, of Him, the Messiah, dated by Daniel for the time in fact of Christ (in 9:24-27),
whose gospel has gone out to all the world AS Isaiah indicated it would, and as
WHAT Isaiah indicated it would be, as we have repeatedly seen (cf. Isaiah
4,7,9,11,12, 28,32,40,42,49,50-55,66): this too has had results.
Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow - it continues, and suffering so grievously proceeds! THIS has been the message since Moses as the briefest inspection of Deuteronomy 32-33 will reveal to the keen eye.
How many tomorrows before repentance reaches
like a freshening breeze of cool strength, in the height of Summer: unexpected, unqualified, and blessed! Israel
How many tomorrows of mourning before the Lord come! How many tomorrows of strife and conflict before this season of repentance to the Messiah, in
, so near to the return of Christ (as noted in Zechariah 14) actually and finally occurs ? How many more lives to be mangled, how many more ferocities of unreason to afflict the nation of Israel , before it comes to the place where its God again is in charge of blessedness for them! as He is already for so many of the Gentiles who know Him. He has personal matters, and national, and indeed, what category can be removed from the precise portents of the Lord! Israel
(cf. Acts 17:26-27).
It is ONE
thing, and a noble and grand one, to be rescued from extinction by the Lord,
and brought back to their land, for as we have shown in the volumes noted, this
was a divine and unconditional promise. It is perfectly consistent with fearful
continuing suffering until the Lord is sought with all the heart, and grief of
spirit comes for sin, for these as for all others who come to Him in faith.
It is QUITE ANOTHER THING when in repentance and holiness (as in Zephaniah 3), a quite and humble people receive FROM THE LORD, their place and the grace in the place of their souls likewise, before the end comes. It is then that the diamond, the tiara, comes brilliant to the fore, for " ‘they shall be mine,’ says the LORD of hosts, ‘on the day that I make up My jewels’ " - and what jewels! as Zephaniah 3:12-13 narrates.