While tensions continue to rise in Israel, several interesting developments are taking shape.
First, Palestinians are now laying claim to the Western Wall, the Tomb of the Patriarchs, and Rachel’s Tomb…none of which are mentioned in any historical Muslim or Arab writing indicating any sort of significance. Yet, the Palestinians have officially proposed to the UN that the Western Wall be recognized as part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
It is clear that the Western Wall is in no way a part of Al-Aqsa Mosque. In fact, while Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock (Muslim shrine) sit on top of Temple Mount, the Western Wall is actually a portion of Temple Mount itself. (The Jewish Temple, destroyed in 70 AD by the Romans, stood on Temple Mount close to where the Dome of the Rock stands today.)
The tombs of the Patriarchs (in Hebron) and Rachel are other important Jewish holy sites, commemorating Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, known as the Patriarchs of Israel; and Rachel, the only Matriarch not buried with the other Patriarchs and Matriarchs. (She died in childbirth and was buried near Bethlehem.) These places have no significance to Palestinians, other than these sites were converted to Muslim mosques roughly 700 years ago.
Meanwhile, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yesterday, and provided this public statements to both Palestinians and Israelis:
To Palestinians, according to the Jerusalem Post:
“I understand your frustration. I know your hopes for peace have been dashed countless times,” he said. “You are angry at the continued occupation and expansion of settlements. Many of you are disappointed in your leaders and in us, the international community, because of our inability to end this occupation. I am not asking you to be passive, but you must put down the weapons of despair,” he said.
“When children are afraid to go to school, when anyone on the street is a potential victim, security is rightly your immediate priority,” he said. “But walls, checkpoints, harsh responses by the security forces and house demolitions cannot sustain the peace and safety that you need and must have.”
Indeed, the Secretary General provides fodder to the belief that Israel is the “occupier,” and that “expansion of settlements” by the Jews in their own land is somehow the problem! He sees walls, checkpoints and “harsh responses” as detrimental to peace. To which we might ask, “How do you propose that Israel defend herself against the blatant terror attacks by Palestinian jihadists?”
I am reminded of a poignant truth: If the Palestinians, Arabs and Persians put down their weapons today, there would be immediate peace in the Middle East. If Israel put down their weapons today, there would be no more Israel tomorrow.
That tells the story that the UN and most other leaders on planet earth do not understand or will not accept. Please be diligent to pray for the peace of Jerusalem.