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  • Samson Carrying the Gaza Gates (Dalziels' Bible Gallery) | By Frederick Layton (1881) from Wikimedia Commons
Teachings

Gaza 2023 in Biblical Perspective

Rev Willem J.J. Glashouwer - 30 October 2023

In 2006 I wrote: “The Israeli elections are behind us. The results are known. Israel is now facing the difficult task to form a new government. Under heavy pressure from abroad – particularly from the United States of America, Europe, Russia and the United Nations – the Gaza strip was abandoned. Nevertheless, Israel will return one day. Gaza, Ashdod and Ekron are explicitly mentioned in Joshua 15:45-47 as belonging to Juda’s inheritance.

The prophet Zephaniah says about this:
“Gaza will be abandoned and Ashkelon left in ruins. At midday Ashdod will be emptied and Ekron uprooted. Woe to you who live by the sea, you Kerethite people; the word of the Lord is against you, Canaan, land of the Philistines. He says, “I will destroy you, and none will be left.” The land by the sea will become pastures having wells for shepherds and pens for flocks. That land will belong to the remnant of the people of Judah; there they will find pasture. In the evening they will lie down in the houses of Ashkelon. The Lord their God will care for them; He will restore their fortunes.” (Zephaniah 2:4-7).

“In the meanwhile, the expelled Jewish pioneers are suffering,” I wrote in 2006. “They had to view with dismay how their houses in the Gaza Strip were blown up and how their synagogues were demolished. How their greenhouses were seized by the enemy. The new Hamas authority is celebrating it as a major success, although it was Israel’s own unilateral decision. Israel and the Jewish people so passionately long for peace that they are even prepared to make such an immense sacrifice.” Thus in 2006!

“Today, in 2023 the prophet Zephaniah has lost none of his relevance”

Today, in 2023 the prophet Zephaniah has lost none of his relevance. When you continue reading the chapter, you will find in verse 8-9 “…“I have heard the insults of Moab (present-day Jordan) and the taunts of the Ammonites (also, present day Jordan), who insulted my people and made threats against their land. Therefore, as surely as I live,” declares the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, “surely Moab will become like Sodom, the Ammonites like Gomorrah— a place of weeds and salt pits, a wasteland forever. The remnant of my people will plunder them; the survivors of my nation will inherit their land…”

After crossing the Jordan River and the Israelites had taken possession of the Promised Land under the leadership of their leader Joshua, appointed by Moses as his successor and a courageous ‘general’ in battle. They took the Promised land. In what is present-day Jordan, in fact the East Bank of the Jordan River then lived two and a half tribe: Reuben, Gad and half the tribe of Manasseh, according to Joshua 13. And also, the Biblical land of Bashan, which is also mentioned in this chapter. Today that area is called the Golan Heights. And apparently that also belongs to the Promised Land. Promised to Israel by the Lord.

“What the Lord did promise to Israel He will fulfil for Israel”

What the Lord did promise to Israel He will fulfil for Israel. Just like He will fulfil everything He promised to His people chosen from the Gentile world, He will fulfil to them. The spiritual body of Christ, His true Church. And everything He has promised to the peoples and the nations in general, He will fulfil to them. Everything in His time and in His way.

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