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Israel & Christians Today: Weekly update (December 7)

Andrew Tucker - 7 December 2018

Israel – a light to the world
This week the Jewish people celebrate the festival of Hannukah, which marks the victory of the Maccabees in their uprising against the Seleucid empire and the re-dedication of the second Temple in Jerusalem after it had been profaned by Antiochus IV Epiphanes in the 2nd century BC. Also known as the Festival of Lights, this festival is celebrated in the darkest month of the year, and at the end of the month when the moon is small and the nights are long. This festival reminds us of the calling of the Jewish people to be lights into the world. It also reminds us that the God of Israel will have the victory over the powers of darkness. And so as Christians preparing for the return of Christ in this Advent season, it is appropriate for us to reflect on (1) the fact that our calling to be light and salt into our nations is deeply connected with the calling of Israel, and (2) the fact that God is in control of world history, and that the return of the Jewish people to the land is a confirmation of the Biblical promise that they will fulfill their task of bringing light to the world when Messiah comes.

Events in and around Israel seem to be intensifying, with a number of alarming developments.


Iran, Syria, Russia and the new emerging world order
Earlier this week the IDF launched Operation Northern Shield at the Lebanon border, where it has been discovered that Iran-sponsored Hezbollah has been and boring tunnels into Israel. While the IDF’s actions have been confined to the Israeli side of the border, Hezbollah’s stockpiling of missiles may require further military action into Lebanon in the future.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/idf-footage-from-attack-tunnel-shows-alleged-hezbollah-members-still-inside/

In this article, Middle East analyst and journalist Jonathan Spyer explains how Iran is creating a new reality in Syria:

https://jonathanspyer.com/2018/12/01/a-new-order-emerges-in-southern-syria/


The United Nations condemns Israel – again
Last week in the United Nations General Assembly resolutions were a past, as they are every year, condemning Israel’s “occupation” of the Old City of Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, demanding the creation of the “State of Palestine”, and condemning Israel’s unification of the city of Jerusalem. While nothing new was contained in these resolutions, they continue to demonstrate the international community’s growing frustration with lack of progress in the peace process, and continuing submission to Arab / Islamic opposition to Israeli claims of sovereignty over Jerusalem.

In a more alarming development, a majority of states rejected a US-sponsored resolution condemning the propagation of terror by Hamas – which has been designated a terrorist organization by the USA and EU. Again, the international community refuses to recognize the reality of Islamic-sponsored terror against Israel, preferring instead to put the blame on Israel for lack of peace in the region.

https://www.dw.com/en/un-general-assembly-rejects-us-resolution-to-condemn-hamas/a-46623413

 

 

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Andrew Tucker is International Editor of our bi-monthly newspaper Israel & Christians Today. The goal of Israel & Christians Today is to help Christians to take God’s Word seriously, and study current events in the world in the context of the Bible. Click here to subscribe.

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