Beliefnet
Is it the End of the World?

After the UN’s Partition Plan was approved on November 29, 1947, everyone knew hostilities had only just begun. Both the British and the French realized that trying to manage a blood feud between two peoples was a losing proposition, so both made exit plans.

When the British Mandate in Palestine ended on May 15, 1948—the day after the Jews declared statehood—five Arab armies invaded.

In the lore and myth that have arisen since then, facts have become obscured by each side’s narrative.

What can’t be denied, however, is that the new Israel Defense Forces was lightly equipped to fight an epic, existential war. The Israelis made do with second-hand equipment (right down to the canteens) as they prepared to win against a vastly superior force.

Yet somehow they did win. Some feel the victorious Israelis were led by the God of the Bible. Probably just as many people feel the battlefield victories were largely an accident of history.

What do you think?

Israel's War of Independence was won with second-hand gear

November 29 marks the 64th anniversary of the “Partition Plan,” approved by the UN. The plan, which passed by a majority vote, called for the establishment of a Jewish state and a Palestinian Arab state, on what was left of the original Palestine Mandate (Transjordan had been created the year before, on most of historical Palestine).

The Jews took the deal, the Arabs did not. Ever since, Arabs have referred to the establishment of Israel, the Partition Vote, the Six Day War, and evidently, every day since 1947 as “The Nakba,” or, the Catastrophe.

There are two basic versions to the story: the Arabs (remember, anyone living in Palestine at the time was “Palestinian”) say the Jews took their land. The Jews say the Arabs have never accepted them.

For many, the issue is the West Bank (the area known in the Bible as Judea and Samaria). The so-called Green Line is the armistice line from 1949, when the Arab invasion of Israel failed. Palestinians want that land for a future state, and interestingly, I do not believe the Bible mitigates against a Palestinian state in the last days. What we know for sure is that the Jews are there to stay (see Amos 9:15).

This tiny plot of land, surrounded by an invisible “green line,” is the source of world consternation.

Just as the Bible said it would be.

The West Bank

When my son and I visited Israel over the summer, we visited the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

Since the Muslim wakf is in charge of the area, they frown on non-Muslims praying or reading their Bibles. I was actually ushered away from the interior of the famed Golden Gate…I don’t know what I was doing wrong but an armed security guard yelled at me!

However, we managed to face the Mount of Olives on the east—the biblical scene of the Messiah’s return in the end of days. We prayed together facing the Mount of Olives. It was very meaningful!

Bottom line is this: there are those of us who actually believe the Bible is true and we eagerly anticipate the Creator renewing creation. It will happen, and to see the actual sites…wow.

Mount of Olives in Jerusalem

I once read a long-time Bible scholar who claimed that Job was really sort of an imaginary figure created by a Hebrew writer. The scholar also went on to say that no one in Job’s time (perhaps the second millenium B.C.) understood life after death issues, etc. In other words, those people were just more primitive in their thinking.

As usual, the scholar’s statements are false. (Somehow, though, they have influenced huge numbers to believe the Bible is in fact a collection of fairy tales.)

From the book of Job, we read the protagonist say: “For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.”

Amazing. Not only does the book clearly claim that it is an historical account, Job himself shows just how knowledgeable he really was. In fact, I often say that Job is the greatest Bible prophecy teacher of all time. He had supernatural revelation about not only his own future, but the future of all people: Resurrection.

I’m a big advocate that the common man can understand the Bible and stand on it. Unbelieving scholars often show their own ignorance, because they believe the path to academic acceptance is to denigrate Scripture.

How pathetic is that?

An ancient grave in Jerusalem, which will one day be empty