I’m currently reading Michael Oren’s magnificent book, Six Days of War. What stands out most is the miraculous nature of that war in June, 1967. If we believe in a God who orders history, then certain things have happened for a very large reason. As He said in Isaiah, God promises that He’ll do certain things, and then He does them.
Don’t you like that simplicity and power? Can’t we rest in that? I can.
Take the lead-up to the war. Egypt’s General Nasser, a Mideast dictator straight out of central casting, was bellicose. He would lead the great pan-Arab nation to victory and eliminate “the Zionists” once and for all. His rhetoric sounded like something from the Arabian deserts. Notice how Mideast tinhorn dictators always make outrageous statements that would get anyone else laughed at.
“We will burn the desert underneath the invaders.”Then the dictators preside over the most humiliating defeats possible.
“We will send the invaders back to their homes in many coffins.”
By the way, this is why we can rest assured that all the sick threats emanating from Iran and Arab nations surrounding Israel will end in spectacular, epic defeats. They always do. They always will. As I’ve said many times, it isn’t Israel I’m worried about.
Back to Six Days in June.
Just one scenario shows us clearly that God orchestrates “things.”
Egypt — which would mass troops on its border with Israel, as would Syria — had an air force, but two things proved fatal: lack of maintenance and nepotism.
For years, Egypt’s military placed officers in key positions because of who they knew, not because of competence.
Then, the Soviet-supplied planes fell into disrepair due to Egypt’s catastrophic economy.
These two things left Egypt’s air force vulnerable, but a façade of confidence brought them quite ironically to a similar position as that of Pharaoh’s army at the Red Sea.
In the early morning hours of June 5, Israel’s air force destroyed their Egyptian adversaries and thus achieved complete air superiority for the remainder of the war; a similar fate befell the Syrians.
Of course, a mountain of events dovetailed into a perfect storm of victory for the Israelis. At the end of the week, Israel had gained control of the whole Sinai Peninsula, the Golan Heights, and the “West Bank,” biblically, Judea and Samaria…the Land of Israel.
But how incredible that these “coincidences” coalesced into Israel’s lightning victory.
It also just so happened that with a prime minister who had been considered indecisive (Levi Eshkol) and an army chief of staff who would have a nervous breakdown during the war (Yitshak Rabin), the Israeli leadership led the military to its greatest victory in 2,000 years.
If one believes the prophecy in Luke that tells us Jerusalem shall be trampled down the by the gentiles, until the times of the gentiles be fulfilled, then the capture of east Jerusalem and the Temple Mount is a great signpost in history. The paratroopers who captured the Temple Mount — after bitter fighting with the Jordanians — began their final assault after descending the Mount of Olives (and resting for a time in the Garden of Gethsemane!). Making their way to Lion’s Gate, they blew up a school bus that the Jordanians had placed in the entrance. From there, they emerged on the Temple Mount and hoisted the Israeli flag, which still flies there today.
Similar dramatic thrusts in the north secured the strategic Golan Heights, from which the Syrians had shelled Israeli villages for 20 years. Now Israel controlled the land promised by God to the 12 tribes.
It would be another 10 years before Israel would begin to really settle the heartland (the “West Bank”), and that effort was led by none other than General Ariel Sharon.
Thus, a daring preemptive strike and a masterful battle plan prepared by flawed men carried the day. By June 10, the war was over, the Arab armies were in shambles, and Israel had begun to look biblical.
Israel in 1967 was in desperate shape; the country was at its wit’s end from the terrorism that had built up over decades.
But the hand of God delivered them.
Today, Israel is in a desperate spot, besieged not only by terrorism and hostile armies near its borders, but now by menacing international politics.
Will God deliver them?
What do you think?