By Joel C. Rosenberg
I’m horrified by reports this morning that in his June 4th speech in Cairo, President Obama will say it is time to divide Jerusalem and make the holy city the capital of a Palestinian state.
No, Mr. President, it is not.
Jerusalem is and should be the eternal, undivided capital of the Jewish people and the Jewish state. Dividing Jerusalem will not make peace. Rather, it would send a message to every Radical Islamic jihadist around the world that Israel is weak, that the Jews won’t even defend the sovereignty of their own capital, that there is “blood in the water,” and that it is time to strike Israel and wipe her off the map.
Dividing Jerusalem would trigger an apocalyptic war in the Middle East the likes of which the region has never seen. Already, the Radicals believe Israel is doomed to destruction. Hearing that the American President is now ready to apply intense pressure against the Israelis to divide their capital will only embolden the Radicals and convince them further that Allah is on their side, the wind is at their back, and they will soon triumph over the Jews and Christians.
While I am not surprised by where the President is headed, I am horrified nonetheless. Right at the moment when the U.S. and Israel need to be working with Arab states in unity against the Iranian nuclear threat, this White House is systematically turning against Israel. Despite all the smiles and boilerplate rhetoric from senior administration officials over the last few days that Prime Minister Netanyahu has been in town — promising to stand with Israel and maintain her security — what the administration is actually advancing in terms of policy is dangerous and destabilizing. They are playing with fire, and they must be publicly and peaceably challenged and resisted.
I am committed to doing everything I possibly can to educate people — and particularly U.S. and Canadian evangelical Christians — to the threats facing Israel and the West due to Radical Islam, and to the biblical responsibility we have to show unconditional love and unwavering support to Israel and the Jewish people. We’ll use radio, TV, the internet, emails and other media to get the word out. But we can’t do it alone. We want and need your help.
One idea: let’s build an alliance of one million true friends of Israel — people who love Israel, are committed to blessing her in real and practical ways, are absolutely opposed to dividing Jerusalem, and will pray faithfully for the peace of Jerusalem and the protection of all the people of the epicenter. Currently, we have 100,000 subscribers to our Flash Traffic email updates who are committed to this cause. If each of us recruited just 10 new friends to sign up for Flash Traffic and be part of this alliance, we would be able to communicate new information, new projects, and new prayer requests to them instantly. We would be able to mobilize people for pro-Israel events. We would be able to mobilize people to write to President Obama and their Congressional leaders to stand with Israel, not against her. We would be able to work together to stockpile food, clothing, medical supplies and other aid in Israel ahead of the next war. And we would be able to encourage one another with the knowledge that we are not alone in this important fight.
Let me be clear: I love the Israeli people. I also love the Palestinians. I want the Israelis to be able — by God’s grace — to live in safety, security and peace. At the same time, I want the Palestinians to be able to govern themselves and to live in autonomy and peace. But I strongly oppose dividing Jerusalem. I strongly oppose the creation of a sovereign Palestinian state that would endanger the very existence of Israel. I am not convinced that Mahmoud Abbas is a partner for peace. I know for certain that Hamas will never make peace; they are committed only to terror, bloodshed and the annihilation of Israel. What’s more, I submit that the last three “land for peace” offers that Israel has made to her neighbors — at Camp David in 2000 when Israel offered half of Jerusalem, 93% of the West Bank, and all of Gaza; in 2000 when Israel unilaterally withdrew from southern Lebanon; and in 2005 when Israel unilaterally withdrew from Gaza — have been absolute disasters for the Jewish State. All three initiatives triggered more war, not peace. They triggered waves of suicide bombers and tens of thousands of rockets, missiles and mortars against Israel. Why in the world would we think continuing down the same road with the same strategies will produce different and better results?
The Bible says in Zechariah 1:14-18,
“So the angel who was speaking with me said to me, Proclaim, saying, ‘Thus says the LORD of hosts, “I am exceedingly jealous for Jerusalem and Zion. But I am very angry with the nations who are at ease; for while I was only a little angry, they furthered the disaster.” Therefore thus says the LORD, ‘I will return to Jerusalem with compassion; My house will be built in it,” declares the LORD of hosts, “and a measuring line will be stretched over Jerusalem.”‘ Again, proclaim, saying, ‘Thus says the LORD of hosts, “My cities will again overflow with prosperity, and the LORD will again comfort Zion and again choose Jerusalem.”‘”This is good news. The God of Israel will neither sleep nor slumber. He is jealous for Jerusalem. He will defend His country, His city, and His people. But He expects us to do our part. And He promises in Genesis 12:1-3 that if we bless Israel, He will bless us.
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