On Tuesday, a ceasefire brokered by Egypt and the UN between Hamas and Israel was officially ratified. Prime Minister Netanyahu’s agreement to the ceasefire has created a firestorm in the Knesset (Israel’s parliament) and Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman has resigned, expressing his displeasure with “ongoing excuses” in failing to deal more strongly with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
He has called for an early election and current Education Minister Naftali Bennett has threatened to leave the coalition if he is not given the Defense Minister position.
For those wondering how government works in Israel, here’s a very brief explanation. There are at least 20+ political parties in Israel and 120 seats in the Knesset. During each election, each party presents a list of candidates and the number of elected representatives from each party is proportional to the percentage of support their party receives. A majority coalition is formed by parties in general agreement with a common agenda. The remaining parties serve as check and balance to the power of the coalition. The chairman of the largest party in the coalition is typically tapped as Prime Minister. The honor of actually selecting the Prime Minister is reserved for the President, who may choose who he wishes. After which, the President has much less political clout than the Prime Minister he selects.
In the current scenario, Yisrael Beiteinu (Avigdor Lieberman’s party) and Bayit Hayehudi (Naftali Bennett’s party) are both part of the Netayahu/Likud coalition, but are threatening to leave, which would cause the Netanyahu government to collapse.
Politics in Israel are often much more volatile than those in America. Only recently, Benjamin Netanyahu was himself considering calling for early elections, and his party (Likud) was expected to win handily and form a stronger coalition. Now, however, he may face a stiffer challenge.
So, what’s the point? Much of the Israeli public, particularly in the south, is dissatisfied with Netanyahu’s “dovish” stance toward Hamas. Could it cause a loss of seats for Likud and a splintering of parties typically favorable to Netanyahu and Likud? Or, will Netanyahu’s stability as Prime Minister be regained by election time? Only time will tell in the crazy world of Israeli politics.
More importantly, though, is the “big picture” of how God seems to be setting the stage for end time events. The Trump-Netanyahu partnership has had tremendous impact on stemming the rising tide of globalism, antisemitism and the dividing of land (which the Bible specifically warns against). I continue to believe God has called two men, Benjamin Netanyahu and Donald Trump, for such a time as this. Ultimately, though, it appears animosity for each in their home countries could eventually lead to wide open doors for evil to swoop in to measures we have never seen. I have consistently said I am not a fan of Donald Trump, the man. But I firmly believe God has used him to bless Israel. Once that blessing leaves, America could experience God’s hand of blessing removed for good, and we could find our nation either opposed to or uninterested in Israel. At that point, Israel will stand alone…just as the Bible tells us she will.
But take heart, friends! This is only a “what if” scenario, but even if events happen as described (or worse), God is fully in control! The point is not to scare people. The point is to prepare people. That’s what Bible prophecy does! As believers in Jesus Christ, we know we could face difficult times, but we will never experience the wrath of God. He has promised to deliver us from it! (1Thessalonians 1:10, 1Thessalonians 5:9) He is coming for us soon!
Check back later today for specific words of encouragement as we face the days ahead! Shalom…peace!