By Jim Fletcher
What a delightful story in the news last week, Hillary Clinton chatting with Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak. She was doing damage-control after also visiting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu; "Bibi" told Madame Secretary that Israel would "restrain" the building in the West Bank, but not halt it; it's a parsing of words, the spin that politicians use.
At the time, Clinton hailed it as progress, but when she learned that the Arabs were upset (a perpetual state of being for the cousins of the Jews), she hurried to then condemn Israel. She said that the United States is opposed to settlement building in the disputed lands, and wanted it stopped "forever."
As I have many times when I listened to diplomats blather, I thought of Amos 9:15, in which God says that in the last days, He will return the Jews to their land, where they'll remain "forever."
I love it.
As the international community moves closer to total isolation of Israel — we all knew it was coming — the hoofbeats of Revelation grow louder (do you hear them, Brian McLaren?). Israel building homes in Judea and Samaria should be like building suburbs in Milwaukee; families grow and expand. But it's not okay for Jews in the Holy Land to do the same thing.
Palestinian Authority head henchman Mahmoud Abbas has "threatened" not to enter into the latest round of useless negotiations if the Israelis don't halt construction immediately. One does wonder what these aging Palestinian leaders get out of their wasteful positions. I know, I know: three squares a day and a cot. Plus they get to hob-knob with international leaders like Hillary Clinton. Beyond that, though, don't you just know that in their heart of hearts they realize they are simply riding it out until Allah takes them home?
I have said this before, but it bears repeating: a very famous Israeli friend of mine told me once, after I had raised concerns that after the Gaza pullout the world would make Jews vacate the heartland: "Jim, please, there are 300,000 people there. It won't happen."
I then thought again of Amos 9:15, how deliciously the Bible is relevant at all times. It's true! Reality bears this out! Millions of Jews have come from the four corners of the earth to inhabit that ancient ancestral land, and Someone says they'll be there forever. The famous "facts on the ground" bear this out; how would the UN force 300,000 Jews out of the middle of Israel?
Now, of course, we might see here the outlines of, say, a certain large-scale invasion? Something compels Gog to invade Israel, and we know from scripture that God puts the idea in his mind; God turns him around in fact to gaze at the beautiful land. We also know that this invading army is decimated on the mountains of Israel, that famous ridge of mountains that extends north and south. The army ascends from the east and is then destroyed supernaturally.
So when Hillary Clinton says that Israel must halt settlement construction forever, is she acting according to God's purposes? Of course not. Actually, she is following not only State Department policy, but the official stance of her beloved United Methodist Church.
Forever is a long time. It is just fascinating to me that international diplomats in our world use the same word that Scripture uses, but for opposite effect.
I am certain that the Jews living in the biblical heartland will never be ejected; they will never leave.
I'll believe that forever.
Washington: Protestor disrupts Netanyahu speech - Ynetnews
Abbas criticizes Arab League for not boycotting Hamas - Xinhua
Collapse Feared for Palestinian Authority if Abbas Resigns - New York Times
Clinton to Iran: Release detained U.S. hikers - The Hill
It's the End of the World as We Know It (and I Feel Fine): How to stop worrying and learn to love these End Times - Jim Fletcher (Book)