How could it have been that Arafat turned down Barak’s peace offer two years ago, in which the Palestinians would have received all of the territories and east Jerusalem? Why did he declare instead an intifada war against Israel, which would undoubtedly wreak huge damage on his own people? Why did he reject Israel’s offer of a cease-fire when Sharon was first elected? Why did he refuse to take a stand against terrorism after the World Trade Center disaster? Why has he used all of the money he has been given to foment suicidal fanaticism among the Palestinian people instead of seeking to improve their socio-economic condition?
Does he see something we don’t see?
He believes that nearly one billion Muslims worldwide will stand with him in a Jihad to “liberate” the “holy land” of Palestine. He believes that through propaganda and media, he can persuade the European community and most of the “third-world” nations either to be support him, or at least to raise no objection. He believes that American society and the international Christian community, while sympathizing with Israel, will be neutralized through cowardice, indecision, or passivity. He even believes that the super pluralistic, multi-faceted democratic society in Israel will be divided against itself and not be able to stand.
In short, he sees more for him than against him. He believes he can win this intifada-jihad-war against Israel.
To a certain degree, he is correct.
“I will gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem, the city shall be taken, the houses plundered, the women raped….”
Yes, according to the Bible, the Islamic Jihad and the United International attack against Israel will win. That’s the part that Arafat sees.
Several aspects of this verse have seemed problematic to me:
1. Coalition: How could it be that all the nations of the world could arrive at such cooperation and unity? Already we are seeing the strange coalition between the liberal secular humanists of the United Nations along with the militant religious fanatics of Islam, joining together to accuse Israel.
2. Focus: How could the whole world be focused against such a small country? Here again the centuries old hatred within Islam has succeeded to focus terrorism and murder against Israel in a way greater than Nazism or Communism ever did.
3. Dividing Line for Christians: How could Israel become the issue that would separate true Christians from nominal ones at Yeshua’s return? The claims against Israel today go against every one of the covenant promises and prophecies of the Bible concerning the ownership of the holy land. The attacks against Israel are, in effect, an attack on Yeshua (Jesus), who claims to be the King of the Jews. We are quickly coming to the point that no one who seriously believes in either the Bible or in Yeshua will be able to remain neutral in the face of the attacks on Israel and the Jewish people.
4. Dividing Line for Morality: How could Israel become the primary issue that would separate truly moral people from simply religious or humanistic ones in the end times? Today, the greatest evil in the world is terrorism. (Even George W. Bush and Colin Powell have agreed to that.) The number one target of worldwide terrorism is Israel. We are quickly coming to the point that no moral person, who truly wants to stand against evil, will be able to remain neutral in the light of the terrorism focused on Israel and the Jewish people.
While Arafat sees the victory of that great apocalyptic Jihad and international coalition against Israel, there is another part he does not see.
Zechariah 14:3, 4, 12
“Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle. In that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives.
And this will be the plague with which the Lord will strike all the people who fought against Jerusalem: their flesh shall dissolve while they stand on their feet, their eyes will dissolve in their sockets, and their tongues shall dissolve in their mouths.”
Their victory will be short lived. For at that moment, Yeshua will break forth out of heaven, leading an angelic army. Judgment and fire will come with Him. His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives. The Lion of Judah will return to His people. The King of the Jews will return to Jerusalem to set up His kingdom. That’s the part Arafat doesn’t see. For that matter neither do most of the Christians and Jews.
That’s why our job is to preach this gospel of the kingdom in the whole world starting at Jerusalem and then the end will come (Acts 1:8, Luke 24:47, Matthew 24:14).
Asher serves as president of Tikkun Global family of ministries and congregations, dedicated to the dual restoration of Israel and the Church. He is founder of the Revive Israel five-fold ministry team, and oversees both Ahavat Yeshua and Tiferet Yeshua congregations in Israel.
He and his wife Betty share a passion for personal prayer and devotion, local evangelism and discipleship in Hebrew, and unity of the Body of believers worldwide.
Asher was raised in a conservative Jewish home and holds degrees from Harvard University, Baltimore Hebrew College and Messiah Biblical Institute. He has authored numerous books, tracts and articles.