Benjamin Netanyahu and Mahmoud Abbas

Zechariah 12:3 says "I will make Jerusalem a burdensome stone." Not a rock, or something immovable, but a stone - a thing that is rolled up, moved around, lifted, displaced and piled on others in every way at the command of the people.

That is what we are seeing right now. Israel is the size of the state of New Jersey. At it's widest point, it is 71 miles across. At it's narrowest- 9 miles. It has just over 8 million people - about the same population as New York City. Yet this small country has the fascination of almost every country on the planet. Israel has become a world focal point. Everyone has an idea of how to "solve the problem" and bring peace to the region. Everyone is in agreement that the entire middle east problem all boils down to Israel. It's all Israel's fault!!!

One of the prime pieces of real estate has to do with the Temple Mount. In 1967, in the six day war, the Israelites pushed the Jordanians out of the West Bank and took Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. After the war the Prime Minister returned the authority of the Temple Mount back over to the Islamic Waqf. The Waqf responsibility is to watch over religious sites and Israel wanted to show a gesture of peace, Since that time, the Muslims have had authority over the Temple Mount, to manage it according to their laws and traditions, and Israel ultimately remains technically in control. If one was to follow the "deed" to the Temple Mount back through history, it would be seen that although many have occupied the Temple Mount throughout history, only one has purchased the property and that transfer still stands today. II Samuel 24:24 tells the story of King David when he paid for the land from Araunah. Araunah wanted to give the land to David but David insisted on paying for it.

You can understand the confusion as the Temple Mount actually belongs to Israel, yet authority was given to the Muslims. This feud goes back to the beginning of time and really will not be solved without God's intervention.

In addition to the religious ramifications, we are also talking about land that is rich in natural resources, and geographic location that is strategic to the welfare of the people of Israel. I must write from a Christian perspective and say that the goal of most of the world is not to separate this land into two states where people can cohabitate peaceably. Most people hate the Jewish people and they have an agenda that begins at getting them out of their land, and ends at the eradication of them as a people. This is because, as I have pointed out before, everything in the physical has it's roots in the spiritual. This comes down to God's people, vs. Satan's agenda. Satan has been trying to destroy the Jewish people (because the Lord Jesus Christ is Jewish) since the beginning of time - and his plan has not changed. He still wishes to destroy all remnant of God's chosen people and he will use whatever government and people he has to to be successful.

Peace treaties have been drawn up, haggled over, and disputed for decades. In 2002,an Arab initiative was drawn up which called for Israel to withdraw from the Golan Heights, Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem. It also called for a separate Palestinian state to be established in East Jerusalem. In return, Israel would get peace. That deal fell apart, and since that time, the world has become more and more antagonistic toward Israel. Each time a peace plan was brought forward and tried to be pushed upon the Israeli people, the United States would stand with Israel and veto the resolution.

Enter - President Obama. He has not been a friend to the Israeli people. Over the years, he and PM Netanyahu have had a very icy relationship that has been characterized on the President's behalf by rudeness, ridicule and insult. He came out earlier this year and threatened PM Netanyahu that he may have to vote against them instead of with them, as so many had before. Netanyahu knows the writing is on the wall with the peace talks. Stall tactics are not working. Negotiation is not working. Talking is not working. The world is turning against Israel, just as the Bible said it would.

On June 3, world leaders (sans Israel and Palestine) came together in France to try and come up with a peace plan that would divide Jerusalem and set up a two state solution. There was much anticipation around this event. I was surprised when news came out that nothing was really accomplished, and another meeting for later in the year was planned. Then today, I found out about a phone call made to John Kerry, US Secretary of State on Thursday night by PM Netanyahu. Netanyahu told Kerry that he would like to pursue peace using the Saudi Agreement that was originally on the table in 2002. Many feel that he thinks that, given the choice between an agreement made by France, and the Saudi Agreement, he has a better chance of negotiating with the Saudi Agreement.

There will be no dragging of heels, or going over this for years with a fine tooth comb, as has happened in the past. The world is anxious. They are fed up. PM Netanyahu knows that President Obama is determined to get this done before he leaves office. Urgency has now taken center stage, and this will get done.

The end result of these negotiations will probably lead the world into the time of the tribulation. This tribulation is a 7 year period referred to in Daniel 9:25-27. In that passage, it says that there will be a covenant with many over Jerusalem. It also says the third temple will be built - something the Jewish people have been preparing for for 10 years. The one who "brokers" this covenant deal and coaxes all parties to sign (and it must be for 7 years in order to fulfill prophecy) is the one that will rise as the antichrist that will take the world home for it's final 7 years.

We are very close - closer than ever before to seeing this unfold. The next few weeks and months, we must keep our eyes on the politics unfolding. More important, keep your eyes on Jesus. We are truly in the end times.

by Cindy Gore WGON op ed writer 6.4.16

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