THE PEACE PROCESS
The Prelude to Peace, or to War?
By Grant R. Jeffrey
We are living in the most extraordinary generation since Jesus walked in Jerusalem two thousand years ago. More prophecies have been fulfilled in our lifetime than in all the generations leading up to 1948. When the nation of Israel was officially reborn at 12.01 AM, May 15, 1948, the prophetic clock began ticking inexorably in the final countdown to the Battle of Armageddon and the return of the Messiah to establish His kingdom on earth.
Israel's False Peace
In the last few years the leaders of Israel and its deadly enemy, the PLO, have signed numerous peace agreements in a process that they promised would end four decades of deadly warfare in the Middle East. Yasser Arafat and Yitzhak Rabin took the first tentative steps towards a possible peace treaty between their two peoples. Since that meeting Israeli forces have withdrawn from Gaza and major parts of the West Bank including Jericho. The Palestinians have completed their "democratic" elections in which Yasser Arafat was proclaimed president of the Palestinian embryonic state. Does this mean true peace is at hand? Or, will a false peace lead inexorably to the invasion of Israel by Russia and the Arab states in the War of Gog and Magog that was prophesied by the ancient prophets of Israel?
The Arab governments and the PLO have offered Israel "peace for land." But what kind of "peace" are they offering? There are two concepts of "peace" in the Arab language. One represents a true peace such as Canada and the U.S.A. enjoy where we genuinely wish the best for our neighbours. The other Arab concept of "peace" is in reality "an armed truce." During the crusades Saladin, the great general of the temporarily defeated Muslim armies, offered the English general, Richard the Lion-Heart, a peace treaty. However, two years later, after rebuilding his armies, Saladin broke his agreement and defeated the English armies. In Yasser Arafat's speeches to Arab audiences, he explained that he will offer Israel "the peace of Saladin.": This proves that he is dishonestly offering Israel only "an armed truce" rather than true peace. The PLO have not relinquished their commitment to conquer every inch of the land of Israel. In Yassir Arafat's speech to a Muslim group in South Africa he told them he was launching a "Jihad," a holy war, to conquer Jerusalem. In addition he declared that he was only offering the Jews a "peace" similar to the peace treaty Mohammed made with his enemy, the powerful Koreish tribe that controlled Mecca. All Muslims understood his meaning because the Koran tells of how Mohammed betrayed and destroyed the Koreish. Two years after the treaty was signed, Mohammed betrayed the Koreish tribe by attacking without warning, killing their leaders and conquering Mecca. All Palestinian groups uses emblems, flags and letterhead that contains maps showing that all of Israel and the territories must be conquered from the Jews. The Jewish state does not exist in their maps nor in their plans for the future. Incredibly, instead of breaking off negotiations with the PLO in light of the Palestinian's bad faith as revealed by these actions and the continued terrorist bus bombings, the present Israeli government continues to negotiate away the land given to the Jews by God four thousand years ago. Arafat continues to glorify the Arab suicide bombers who kill innocent children, women and old men as 'shaheedun" the Arab word for martyrs and provides millions in aid to the families of the bombers. Only a few weeks ago Arafat declared that once the Jews retreated totally from Gaza and the West Bank territories he would invite in up to nine million Palestinians from other countries to overwhelm the Jewish state. He declared that they would ultimately succeed in eliminating the state of Israel from the Middle East.
The PLO have often declared that their long-term strategy is to eliminate Israel in a plan called "liberation in phases." Yassir Arafat has openly decreed since 1974 that during the first phase of his "Phases Plan" the PLO will establish a beachhead in Gaza and the West Bank. In the second phase their armies will take over Jerusalem. In the final phase, they will build up their strength in Gaza and the West Bank to enable their soldiers to finally conquer the rest of Israel. On Sept. 1, 1993 Arafat confirmed to an Arab audience that this peace accord was part of his 1974 ""Liberation by Phases" plan. During interviews many Arab leaders and individual Arabs have declared they will never be content until they recover the entire land of Israel from the Jews. Arafat stated in 1980: "Peace for us means the destruction of Israel." One of the reasons the Arabs will never accept the right of Israel to exist in the Middle East is that their Koran teaches that, if a land was ever occupied in the past by Muslims, then it must be recovered by "Jihad," or holy war. Although Yasser Arafat pledged in the Oslo Accords to eliminate references to the destruction of Israel from the Charter of the Palestine Liberation Organization, he now refuses to do so. Furthermore, most of his Arab allies refuse to relinquish their goals to destroy the Jewish state.
The Coming Russian - Arab Invasion of Israel
Bible prophecy provides some insight into the ongoing peace negotiations. Thousands of years ago the prophet Ezekiel (Chapter 38 & 39) predicted that a huge confederacy of Arab nations under Russian leadership will join together to attack Israel after the Jewish exiles have returned to their homeland. Despite massive changes in Russia the hardliners in the KGB, the army and military-industrial complex maintain their grip on power. A recent study of the role of the military in Russia revealed that Boris Yeltsin has secretly appointed over 14,000 senior military generals to assume command of every single department of the Russian government including the Health, Agricultural, Transportation and Mining ministries. No one could rise to the rank of major in Russian's army unless they were an approved member of the Russian Communist Party. By this action Yeltsin has allowed the Communist Party and their military allies to secretly assume control over every decision in his government. Regardless of who wins the June 1996 elections, the leadership of Russia is firmly in the hands of the Communist Party, the renamed KGB now called the Foreign Intelligence Service and the Red Army generals.
The prophet Ezekiel declared that a future military leader of this alliance will say "I will go up against a land of unwalled villages; I will go to a peaceful people, who dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates" (Ezekiel 38:11). For the last forty-five years Israel could not "dwell safely." Israel was forced to live as an armed camp for decades surrounded by two hundred million Arabs. Israel had to spend more of its budget on defense than any other country. However, this recent peace process and the blindness of the Israeli leadership may create a false sense of security and safety over the next few years that will allow Israel to relax its defenses and "dwell safely." This peace agreement may set the stage for the fulfillment of the great War of Gog and Magog prophesied by the prophet Ezekiel.
This battle will be won by God's spectacular intervention with supernatural earthquakes and pestilence defeating the combined Russian and Arab armies. This miraculous deliverance by the hand of God will allow Israel to rebuild the Third Temple and resume animal sacrifices as described by Daniel 9:24-27. These awesome prophetic events will prepare the way for the fulfillment of the prophecies of the rise of Antichrist and his signing of a seven-year treaty with Israel. The treaty will commence a seven-year countdown to the return of Christ and His saints at the Battle of Armageddon to establish His millennial kingdom. These critical developments in the Middle East encourage us as Christians to live in constant expectation of the glorious Rapture of the Church to meet our Lord. Jesus said, "when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh"(Luke 21:28). Yet we must live in a spiritual balance in these last days. Although He may come today He may also delay His return for a generation because our Lord "is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance"(2 Peter 3:9) We must live and witness to those around us as though the Rapture will occur tomorrow. Yet we must also plan and work as though we have a hundred years. Our Lord's command is that we "Occupy till I come"(Luke 19:13).
The Strategic Importance of Territory
Israel requires military control of the Golan Heights, Gaza and the West Bank in order to provide the strategic depth to defend itself against the overwhelming military force of its Arab enemies. Every military study in the last twenty five years concluded that Israel cannot be defended by conventional forces and weapons if it loses military control over these vital strategic territories. The U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff 1992 study confirmed Israel could not give up the Golan, Gaza or the West Bank and expect to survive an Arab invasion. Without the West Bank territory Israel will be less than nine miles wide at its centre near Tel Aviv where almost eighty percent of its population lives. In a future conflict enemy armies could cut Israel in two by attacking from the PLO controlled high ground of Judea and Samaria (West Bank). The Jewish state could be overrun in a matter of days. In a future war Israel may be forced to resort to nuclear weapons from the onset when it finds its small diminished territory about to be overcome by enemy armies. The Israeli army calls this "the Samson Option" because it would destroy the Middle East, just as Samson brought down the temple on his enemies. Despite this grim reality the present Israeli government has agreed to relinquish these strategic areas. For the first time since its creation in 1948 Israel's conventional army and air force will not be able to successfully defend its vital territory and population from an armed invasion.
Setting the Stage for a Treaty with Antichrist
The United Nations and the Arab states continue to call for the elimination of Israel's nuclear weapons. The introduction of nuclear weapons to Iran and the growing possibility of Libya, Syria and Iraq joining the nuclear club has altered the strategic balance. It is difficult to see how a balance of nuclear terror could continue for very long between Israel and the Islamic states who remain dedicated to its destruction. United Nations plans to ban nuclear weapons from the Middle East may tempt a future Israeli government to agree to relinquish its nuclear option. Israel realizes that an unstable Arab regime might be tempted to use their atomic warheads even though it would result in mutual assured destruction. In Islamic religious philosophy they would gain paradise if they died a devastating war to cleanse the "infidels" from Jerusalem. In a few years these events will set the stage for a superpower to guarantee Israel's security and borders. Several prophecies describe the revival of the Roman Empire in the end times to dominate Europe and the world as it did thousands of years ago in the days of Christ. The rise of the European Community is creating an economic and political superpower that is increasing its involvement in the Middle East. The prophet Daniel wrote that a future Antichrist will arise in the last days to control the revived Roman Empire. Daniel predicted that "He shall confirm a covenant with many for one week." This verse indicates that this future European dictator will confirm a treaty to defend Israel for seven years. The signing of this future treaty will start the final seven-year countdown to Armageddon, the climactic battle when Jesus Christ will defeat the armies of the world to establish His kingdom forever.
We are commanded by God to "Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee" (Psalms 122:6). However, this interim peace agreement between the PLO and Israel may set the stage for the fulfillment of these tremendous prophecies leading to Christ's return in our generation. While we would rejoice at the prospects of a true peace in the Middle East we must recognize that the ancient prophets warned that a false peace will set the stage for the final conflict that will end with the Battle of Armageddon. The prophet Jeremiah warned that in the last days men would say "Peace, peace! When there is no peace" (Jeremiah 6:14). Our world will not know true peace until Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace comes. According to the Bible, real peace will only come to the Middle East when Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace, changes the hearts of both the Arabs and the Jews. Then both peoples will dwell as brothers in true peace forever under the rule of their Messiah.
Based on Grant R. Jeffrey's books
PRINCE OF DARKNESS and FINAL WARNING -
Economic Collapse and the Coming World Government
Frontier Research Publications Inc.
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