While President Obama continues to say publicly that Israel has the right to defend herself, his administration has tightened arms transfers to Israel as tension grows between the two nations. The US cites IDF tactics in Operation Protective Edge and the number of civilian casualties as reasons to oppose the arms transfer. The Wall Street Journal reports a “particularly combative phone call on Wednesday” between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Obama.
Despite the Biblical exhortation to bless and stand with Israel (Genesis 12:3), and the warning that God will bring judgement upon those who divide the land (Joel 3:1-3), we know that in the end, all nations will turn against Israel.
However, I want to encourage believers.
Fellow Jesus followers, though our administration may turn its back on Israel, we don’t have to! Of course we want our nation to be blessed…and we should pray to that end. But, my friends, the blessing and the curse apply to each of us individually! God will bless those who bless Israel, and will curse those who curse Israel. Stand on the right side of the blessing!
How do we do that? Here are some thoughts:
- Study – Habakkuk 1:5: Look among the nations! Observe! Be astonished! Wonder! Because I am doing something in your days – You would not believe if you were told. I want to know what He’s doing, don’t you? His Word will guide us in these last days. Let’s study it!
- Hang out – Matthew 28:19-20: Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. If we are truly obedient to God’s Word, we must love as Christ loves, tell others about the love of Christ, teach them, disciple them, and baptize them. That could be Gentiles, Jews, Arabs, Palestinians, Muslims or whoever else God should choose to cross our paths. Share God’s great plan with all those you hang out with!
- Invest – Matthew 6:19-21: Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven…for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Though “invest” could mean giving financially to causes that bless Israel and her neighbors, it could also mean investing time, talents, and availability. Find ways to “invest” in others. As we study God’s Word about end times, He gives us a treasure trove of wisdom. Invest your knowledge in others!
- Pray – Romans 12:12 (NIV): Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. So, even if you don’t study, hang out, or invest, EVERYONE can pray! May I encourage you to be a prayer warrior? Followers of Jesus have confidence that God is a prayer-hearing, prayer-answering God, with unlimited sovereignty and power! Let’s tap into that power! (While you’re at it, pray for the peace of Jerusalem….and her neighbors! Psalm 122)
Knowing our eternal destiny should give us the motivation to stand firm in the truth of God’s Word, and to encourage one another all the more as we see the day drawing near! (Hebrews 10:25)