Shalom from the Jezreel Valley in Israel! Tuesday marked one month since the horrific events of October 7. The people of my country are still recovering, like trying to get your breath back after being punched in the stomach.
WE ARE WOUNDED BUT NOT HELPLESS
We are wounded, we are mourning, we are reeling. What we are not is helpless. Hamas thought they could hit us hard enough to take away our spirit, our hope, our unity. They miscalculated, and now they are paying an extremely high price.
Because one month has passed, I want to take this newsletter to reset ourselves. I think it is necessary to not let time soften the sting of what took place. However, it is also important to look at where we are now, and to see what Israel and the world can expect in the near future.
On October 7 at 6:30 in the morning, more than 3000 Hamas terrorists and Gazan civilians crossed the border into Israel. They didn’t just have murder on their minds. They were also intent on committing torture, rape, and kidnapping. All four of their goals were accomplished in the most evil and horrific ways. We cannot forget the indiscriminate rape and slaughter at the music festival. We cannot let the stories of children tortured and killed in front of their parents, of a pregnant woman being torn open and a knife being plunged into her unborn child, of two stacks of ten children each who were set fire and burned alive, of husbands being forced to watch their wives being raped before they were executed with a bullet to their heads. Time can morph those actions into just a number – more than 1400 killed. That number is tragic, but it is clinical. We must never forget what that number represents – 1400 acts of the most barbaric evil this world has seen.
We must also remember that there are at least 240 hostages still being held by Hamas and Gazan civilians. Many are children of all ages, even down to infants. Many are women, from teens on up. They are being brutalized beyond comprehension. I recently posted on my Telegram a Palestinian woman explaining how the Koran taught that female prisoners of war should be “humiliated” in the worst possible ways. When the hostages are finally freed, they will spend a lifetime processing through the trauma they have experienced.
Once again I ask, if this had been done to your country, how would you expect your government to react? The Israeli leadership has responded by saying that those responsible will pay, and the military will ensure that our enemy is not around to do this again. That is what has been taking place in Gaza and on our northern border with Lebanon.
Of the billions of dollars that has been sent to Gaza for humanitarian relief, most of it has found its way into the pockets of Hamas’s leadership and into the vast tunnel system they built underground. What they created in their “city below the city” is really quite amazing, and I just wonder what sort of thriving society they could have right now if they had invested that money into their people and their culture rather than into their futile life’s mission to eradicate Israel.
Currently, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) has clamped tight their pincer strategy, effectively cutting Gaza in two. Having warned civilians to flee to the south out of harm’s way, they are now closing the circle they created around the Hamas headquarters. I can’t say it’s around the Hamas leaders, because they have been living in luxury hotels in Qatar and Turkey for years. The primary tunnels for Hamas’s headquarters are located in and around the al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City. While the safest route for the IDF would be to drop bunker buster bombs on the site, that is not how they operate. As heinous as Hamas’s strategy is of using their own civilians as human shields, it is effective. So, the IDF is forced into a ground war that will do its best to target only terrorist combatants. This process is progressing well.
When Hassan Nasrallah, leader of the terrorist group Hezbollah, announced that he was giving a speech last Friday, the Hamas leaders were hoping he would say they were joining the war. They were let down. While Hezbollah, guided by their Iranian masters, originally had every intention of being part of this invasion of Israel, Hamas jumped the gun and went out on their own. That brought in a complication that Hezbollah and its Lebanese terrorists hadn’t expected – the United States. A US carrier group off Lebanon’s shore has given Nasrallah great pause, which is evidenced by the fact that two-thirds of his speech focused on America. But Hezbollah has not given up on their plans. They are just waiting for the right time when they once again have the element of surprise.
When Hamas first attacked, the world seemed to be with Israel. Of course, there were the usual hold outs, but a vast majority of nations condemned the attacks and sent condolences to the Jewish state. Two factors are changing that. First, there is time. The painful edge of the attack is dulling, and those who have always been anti-Israel are becoming emboldened to express their feelings once again. We see this in the United Nations. We see this in countries that are calling on Israel to pause the action in Gaza and to reconsider the proportionality of their military response. I would like to know what the proportional response is to two piles of small children who were burned alive. The proportional response to evil of that sort is to remove the evil once and for all. That is the commitment that Israel’s leadership has made to their people. And it is a commitment that they will likely pay for in condemnation from much of the world.
Already Israel has been falsely accused of bombing a hospital in Gaza. Nations across the globe rushed to condemn this heinous action of the IDF. But then the source of the explosion was proven to be one of Hamas’s own rockets. Then, on Tuesday, the United Nations Relief and Workers Agency (UNRWA) accused Israel of killing 66 innocent civilians and injuring 540 more who they say were sheltering in UNRWA schools. But in the pictures accompanying their accusation, there were sinkholes that clearly showed collapsed Hamas tunnels underneath the United Nations sanctioned school. Hey UN, didn’t you know that locating military infrastructure under schools is an internationally acknowledged war crime? I guess we shouldn’t expect anything more from an organization that has named the Iranian ambassador to chair its Human Rights Council Social Forum. Lies and fabrications will continue to rain down from the global news media. Some will stick to Israel, and, when the layer of fake news has grown enough, the world will once again turn against the maligned nation.
Other nations, particularly the United States, must recognize that a two-state solution is no longer on the table. If it had just been a rebel terrorist group from within Gaza, that would be one thing. But the attacking force was made up of members of Hamas, along with civilians who just happened to be nearby. When they were invited to come across the border and join in the atrocities, they did so with glee. That is because the Palestinians raise their children to be monsters. Those civilians joined in because they had been taught from the time they were young that one of the greatest things they could do for Allah is to violently kill a Jew. That is ingrained in the Palestinian population, and it will undoubtedly be passed on to the next generation. Having hundreds of thousands of people with that mindset living just beyond our border is untenable, as was evidenced on October 7. So, no, there will be no two-state solution. That ship has sailed.
A recent development that is especially concerning is to see the way that Satan has gotten his foothold of antisemitism into the church. Click-bait conspiracies and unscriptural speculation is rampant from some pulpits and throughout social media. I can’t tell you how many people have asked me whether Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu conspired with the United States to carry out the October 7 attacks. This is not only ludicrous, it is appalling. And, no, I am not going to spell out exactly why this is so asinine for the same reason I do not waste time proving that 9/11 was not an inside job and that people actually walked on the moon. Anyone spreading these antisemitic lies should be ashamed of themselves and should repent immediately.
Antisemitism is already strong enough in western cultures without the help of the church. Jews are being attacked and beaten in the streets. Some businesses have started to ban Jews, and Stars of David are beginning to appear spray-painted on Jewish-owned houses and stores. Pro-Palestinian marches and rallies are really more anti-Jew than anything else. So much of the ignorance that is leading to these mass protests originates in western academia and mosques. It is only going to get worse, and eventually governments are going to have to deal with it – particularly in Europe where the Muslim population is greater and more militant.
The other major factor in the growth of antisemitism is the press. They have already shown their bias to a shocking degree. We are so used to seeing pictures and video of events as they happen, that sometimes we forget to ask who is behind the camera. Much of the photographic evidence taken of the atrocities on October 7 was done by Hamas members. However, we have now learned of four photojournalists who were embedded with Hamas on that day. These men who worked for AP, Reuters, CNN, and the New York Times were well-positioned to document the terrorists as they broke through the border fence, raided the Israeli villages, tortured and murdered innocent civilians, and carried away hostages and dead bodies. The fact that these morally bankrupt voyeurs kept their cameras to their eyes but their phones in their pockets is nothing short of complicity. The silence of the news media giants who excitedly published the pictures coming in from these men, knowing full well their situational provenance, makes them equally as guilty of collaboration. This is the media that the world turns to for truth about Israel.
Israel will fully deal with Hamas. In the same way Operation Wrath of God ensured that everyone involved in the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre was permanently dealt with, each member of the Hamas leadership has a date coming with either the IDF or the Mossad. Hamas, as a terrorist organization, will cease to exist. Hezbollah will also be forced to back down. I hope that it can be done the easy way with them pulling back from the border and dismantling their armaments. But if Hezbollah insists on doing it the hard way, the IDF do whatever it takes to ensure Israel’s safety. Finally, there will come a time when Israel exacts its punishment against Iran. They were the masterminds behind all that has taken place, and they must learn that planning, ordering, and funding that kind of terror comes with a very high price.
It is likely that the U.S. will get drawn deeper into Syria and Iraq. I am amazed at how little uproar is being caused within America over the constant attacks on their bases in the Middle East. U.S. soldiers are experiencing grievous wounds, and I’m wondering where the response is. It is as if this current administration is so desperate for a new deal with Iran that they are willing to ignore the fact that the ayatollahs are ordering their proxy militias to send rockets and suicide drones into American military bases. In the Middle East, we do not speak a language of appeasement but of power. The U.S. needs to show their strength in Syria and Iraq or the attacks will only intensify.
As time goes on, the Russia/Iran/Turkey alliance will only grow stronger. We know this because of what we see in the geopolitical world and what we read in Ezekiel 38. I think it is also very likely that the timeline is growing shorter for China attacking Taiwan. Overall, we can expect to see evil increasing around the world. For instance, just in the last few days the Muslim extremist Janjaweed militia massacred nearly 800 tribal people, mostly teenagers, in the Geneina area of Darfur, Sudan. Where are the BBC and the New York Times? Where are the marches for these victims?
This newsletter has been necessarily gloomy because it is a dark time in our world. But we know that it can never grow so dark that God’s light ceases to shine. As believers, it is our role to pray for Israel. We are to love that which God loves, and God still loves the Jewish people, as rebellious as they may be at times. He holds in His heart the ultimate example of what a Father’s love should be for a wayward child – passionate, unwavering, disciplinary when necessary, and never-ceasing.
ISRAEL'S FINAL WAR
The present conflict that Israel faces underscores a united front against the orthodox Jewish people. The “ten toes” (nations) of Daniel’s vision are coming into play. Read the trending article by Dr. Stephen Phinney. HERE
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