Almost every day we read in the newspapers that yet another deadly event has occurred between Hamas and Fatah in the Palestinian territories. In order for peace to prevail, it is obvious that these two opposing groups of people must put their differences aside and somehow form a unified government.
It would seem logical that Israel’s Arab neighbors would rise to the occasion and put real pressure on Hamas and Fatah to put aside their differences and make peace. But they do not. The question is, “Why?”
Israel appears to be between the proverbial rock and hard place. Unfortunately, Israel does not live in a friendly neighborhood. A half million hostile Arab neighbors surround Israel. Syria poses a dire threat. More importantly, recent frightening images from Syria have shown men, women and children writhing with seizures and pain caused by Assad attacking his own with chemical weapons. If Assad would kill his own people, what’s to keep him from attacking Israel to obtain the Golan Heights as a key strategic position?
Many stories of justice and of God overcoming evil fill the Bible, God’s Holy Word. One of the most dramatic and best known is the amazing defeat of the giant Goliath by David in I Samuel 17. David was a shepherd boy who miraculously vanquished the mocking giant Goliath on a battlefield in Israel. “The battle is the Lord’s,” shouted David as he hurled the fatal stone from his simple slingshot into Goliath’s forehead. The giant crumpled dead onto the battlefield floor. With this heroic feat and his simple trust in the Lord, David saved the Army and the nation of Israel from destruction.
Why do so many people in the world hate the Jews? Why is there so much anti-Semitism in the world? Why do so many nations seem to despise Israel? What is the cause of all this negative prejudice? What is the root of all this deep-seated hatred?
I think the answer is plain and clear. The answer is God.
Israel’s right to exist started long before it became recognized as a modern nation by then President of the United States Harry S. Truman in 1948. Its existence was predestined when God said to Abram “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing.” Thus the everlasting covenant was established between Abram the Hebrew and God to go and establish Israel as the “Promised Land.
Israel’s right to exist started long before it became recognized as a modern nation by then President of the United States Harry S. Truman in 1948. Its existence was predestined when God said to Abram “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing.” Thus the everlasting covenant was established between Abram the Hebrew and God to go and establish Israel as the “Promised Land."
Jews and Christians alike are quite familiar with the biblical story of David and Goliath. Of course, it is much more than just a story. It is the true account of a historic event, a most important and significant event in the life of the Jewish people and nation.
The army of the enemy Philistines was camped nearby the army of the Israelites. The Philistines were prepared and ready to attack and they were confident of victory. They sent out their giant warrior, Goliath, to shout defiant threats to the Israelites.
Iran's current president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has boldly and loudly proclaimed to Israel and to all the world that he thinks the Jewish people are children of pigs, that they are a cancer on the world that needs to be removed, and that their Jewish nation of Israel must be "wiped off the face of the map." It sounds more than a little like the book of Esther is being re-written and the hateful Persian danger has risen again. It so happens that, very much like the hateful Persian leader Haman 2500 years ago, another hateful Persian leader has arisen today who is again threatening to destroy the Jewish people. Although the name of God is not mentioned in the pages of the book of Esther, the mind and hand of God are there - unmistakably clear.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently addressed the United Nations General Assembly, strongly defending the existence of the state of Israel, and stressing that the Jewish state "will live forever." He also warned the nations of the world that a nuclear armed Iran will be a great threat not only to Israel and the Middle East, but also to all the world.
He started his speech by saying that he was happy to be addressing the UN General Assembly, which was being presided over by the Israeli Ambassador to the UN. Then the first item on his agenda was to stress the long existence of the state of Israel and to defend its present existence. "Three thousand years ago," he said, "King David ruled over a nation called Israel, and from a capital called Jerusalem." He added, "Today we are happy to have a modern Jewish state that will live forever."