Weekly Update: “My dwelling place will be with them”

editor - 21 February 2020

There is a lot of discussion at the moment in Israel and around the world about the Trump peace plan, and the position of Jews and Arabs. This week we include an article by Dr. Raphael G. Bouchnik-Chen (BESA) who reports on the suggestion in the “Deal of the Century” that a triangle of Israeli Arab communities that were disputed by Israel and Transjordan during the 1949 armistice negotiations can become part of the state of Palestine at such time as the state is established.

Johannes Gerloff explains in his video teaching this week (below) that while God has given the land to the Jewish people as an eternal inheritance, the land is not just for the Jews to live in. There have always been and will always be other nations in the land. The Jewish people are called in possessing the land to be a blessing to the “others”.

But how can there be peace if the leaders of the “others” constantly reject the right of Jews to live in the land? The articles reproduced from BESA and JPost reveal the tragedy of Palestinian rejectionism, and how that is preventing true peace.

The debate between the Jews in Israel and Jews in North America (see the article by Dr. Asif Romirowsky) shows ongoing dissension within the Jewish world about Zionism and Israel. Chapters 36-37 of the Prophet Ezekiel remind us that God is not only bringing the Jewish people back to the land. That alone will not show God’s holiness. There is also a spiritual work to be done. God also says through the prophet: “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.” (chapter 36:26-27). He will “cleanse” His people (they will “no longer defile themselves with idols and vile images”) and He will unite the descendants of the tribes of Jacob returning from the nations after thousands of years dispersion.

In this time of great political unrest in Israel, dissension within the Jewish community, and confusion about who the land belongs to, “two states”, etc, let us pray for the fulfilment of God’s word. Pray that He will not only bring the Jewish people home, but will cleanse them and restore them spiritually. Pray that He will give them true unity amongst themselves, and peaceful co-existence with the “others” in the land.

If You Will It, It Is No Dream…But Only On Our Terms

Dr. Asaf Romirowsky (BESA): The necessity of a Jewish nation state was a foundational premise for the founding fathers of Zionism, no matter what their political persuasion. That understanding was once shared by most American Jews, particularly in the aftermath of the Holocaust. Today, however, the idea of Jewish statehood is no longer a unifying principle but a wedge issue for American Jews. The notion of “occupation” has become the defining lens through which everything about the Palestinians’ self-conception is explained and justified.
Read more..


The “Triangle Area” in the “Deal of the Century”

Dr. Raphael G. Bouchnik-Chen (BESA): The “Deal of the Century” suggests that a triangle of Israeli Arab communities that were disputed by Israel and Transjordan during the 1949 armistice negotiations can become part of the state of Palestine at such time as the state is established. This suggestion has raised the ire of Israeli Arabs and Jews who view it as an attempt at population “transfer”, though no residents due to come under Palestinian jurisdiction will be required to leave their homes. It is also historically suspect, as it depends on a faulty reading of the history of the armistice negotiations.
Read more..


A Short History of Palestinian Rejectionism 

Dr. Edy Cohen (BESA): The consistent and enduring Palestinian rejection of any and all peace initiatives with Israel, most recently the “Deal of the Century,” calls into question the commitment of the Palestinian leadership not only to peace but to the very welfare and safety of the Palestinian people.
Read more..


The tragic isolation of the Palestinian Authority

JPost editorial: Incitement and attacks against Palestinians who want to reach out are harming the few courageous voices who would like to open minds about a future that can be different.
Read more..

“Focus on the future” – Video teachings by Rev. Willem J.J. Glashouwer

Rev. Willem Glashouwer helps us understand God’s prophetic word, and how prophecy is being fulfilled in our generation.

Volume 3 episode 4: In Matthew 16 Jesus discusses the disciples’ ability to predict the weather but not the signs of the times. And in Matthew 24 His disciples ask Him to help them understand the signs of the times. In this week’s video Rev Willem Glashouwer explains what the disciples were actually asking of Jesus and how we too can deal with and understand the signs of the times and how we can prepare ourselves to participate in that glorious future when Jesus will come to establish His Kingdom of Peace all around the world


“The original inhabitants” – Video teaching by Johannes Gerloff

Watch this series of teachings by Israeli-based Bible teacher and journalist Johannes Gerloff:

Episode 13: Some people uphold that nobody lived in the land of Israel prior to the arrival of the people of Israel. However, this is not true according to the biblical account.


Shabbat shalom,

Andrew Tucker
Editor-in-Chief – Israel & Christians Today



Scripture for the week: Ezekiel 37:15-28

15 The word of the Lord came to me:16 “Son of man, take a stick of wood and write on it, ‘Belonging to Judah and the Israelites associated with him.’ Then take another stick of wood, and write on it, ‘Belonging to Joseph (that is, to Ephraim) and all the Israelites associated with him.’ 17 Join them together into one stick so that they will become one in your hand.18 “When your people ask you, ‘Won’t you tell us what you mean by this?’ 19 say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I am going to take the stick of Joseph—which is in Ephraim’s hand—and of the Israelite tribes associated with him, and join it to Judah’s stick. I will make them into a single stick of wood, and they will become one in my hand.’ 20 Hold before their eyes the sticks you have written on21 and say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: I will take the Israelites out of the nations where they have gone. I will gather them from all around and bring them back into their own land. 22 I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel. There will be one king over all of them and they will never again be two nations or be divided into two kingdoms. 23 They will no longer defile themselves with their idols and vile images or with any of their offenses, for I will save them from all their sinful backsliding, and I will cleanse them. They will be my people, and I will be their God.24 “‘My servant David will be king over them, and they will all have one shepherd. They will follow my laws and be careful to keep my decrees. 25 They will live in the land I gave to my servant Jacob, the land where your ancestors lived. They and their children and their children’s children will live there forever, and David my servant will be their prince forever. 26 I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant. I will establish them and increase their numbers, and I will put my sanctuary among them forever. 27 My dwelling place will be with them; I will be their God, and they will be my people.28 Then the nations will know that I the Lord make Israel holy, when my sanctuary is among them forever.’”
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