Friday, April 27, 2012

Happy 64th Birthday, Israel

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While the 64th birthday of a nation may not be a big deal in many cases, in terms of the modern nation of Israel, it is a very big deal.

The Jerusalem Post wrote yesterday:

"Israel has the dubious distinction of being the only UN member state whose right to exist is regularly challenged, whose elimination from the world map is the aim of at least one other UN member state, Iran, and whose population centers are deemed fair game by Hamas-controlled Gaza and Hezbollah-dominated Lebanon. Thus, Israel’s sheer act of survival from year to year is itself noteworthy."

The Post said, "None of the countries that are serial human-rights violators – not Iran, North Korea, Belarus, Zimbabwe, Sudan, or any of the others – gets anything near the relentless, obsessive, guilty-till-proven-innocent scrutiny that democratic Israel receives from UN bodies, with their built-in, anti-Israel majorities, in New York and Geneva."

Former Communications Advisor to Prime Ministers Peres and Rabin told Fox News, "Throughout the difficult times of conflict, Israel has stayed strong and firm. The Tel Aviv Stock Market stayed strong and stable during the Second Lebanon War. It is because Israelis have confidence in itself. This confidence comes from always looking forward to the future, but always remembering the past."

Remembering the past reminds us that God has made significant promises in regard to Israel.

God's first promise was to Abraham, "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. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all people on earth will be blessed through you (Gen. 12: 2,3)."

Then God spoke this to Abraham, "As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations ... I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you. The whole land of Canaan, where you are now an alien, I will give as an everlasting possession to you and your descendants after you; and I will be their God." (Gen. 14: 4,7,8).

It was the Prophet Ezekiel speaking for God many years later who said, "Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will take the people of Israel from the nations among which they have gone, and will gather them from all sides, and bring them to their own land; and I will make them one nation in the land, upon the mountains of Israel...And the desolate land shall be tilled... And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the Garden of Eden." (Ezekiel 37:21).

I agree, Israel has much to "remember".

So do all of us of the Christian faith. "I will bless those who bless you, and who ever curses you, I will curse." That's a Promise.

May God bless Israel on this special day and always. We pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

Be Vigilant. Be Discerning. Be Faithful. Be Prayerful. Be Active. Be Blessed.