The Middle East is in flames. Scenes reminiscent of a second Vietnam flicker on the TV screens of the world. Jihadi forces that Israel has been combating for nearly a century are swarming like zombies over the walls and borders of Syria, Iraq and Jordan – colonial boundaries established by Britain and France at the close of World War One (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sykes%E2%80%93Picot_Agreement ).
Sunni jihad warriors, or mujahidin, (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria or ISIS – a group spiritually connected with al Qa’eda; in Arabic al-Dawlah al-Islāmīyah fī al-ʻIrāq wa-al-Shām or Dāʻish ) have demolished border checkpoints between Syria and Iraq, (http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jun/22/isis-take-border-crossings-iraq-syria-jordan) and are poised at the gateways to Jordan. Their current leader is Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, and their clear goal is the establishment of a jihadi Caliphate across the entire Middle East as a prelude to conquering the world under the black jihadi banner of Mohammed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_State_in_Iraq_and_the_Levant).
Shi’ite mujahidin, guided by their Iranian puppet-masters, are streaming into Iraq from both Iran (Iranian Revolutionary Guards) and Lebanon (Hezbollah). Shi’ite religious leader Sayyid Muqtada al-Sadr in Iraq is once again raising up the Mahdi army (Jaish al-Mahdi or JAM, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mahdi_Army). Mahdi is a last days Shi’ite apocalyptic term referring to the Armageddon-like appearance of a Shi’ite messianic conqueror. This army originally spearheaded the first major Shi’ite armed confrontation against U.S.-led forces in Iraq, making use of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) which owed much of their technological sophistication to the Irish Republican Army’s expertise and Iranian production.
A time for war
“There is an appointed time for everything, and there is a time for every event under heaven. A time to kill…a time to throw stones …a time to tear apart…a time to hate…a time for war” (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8). In the Middle East this is a time for war.
This war plays Arab against Arab, Muslim against Muslim, jihadi against jihadi. The murder and violence has spilled over into Africa, where groups like Al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb (also known as AQIM or Tanẓīm al-Qā‘idah fī Bilād al-Maghrib al-Islāmī; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Qaeda_in_the_Islamic_Maghreb), Boko Haram (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boko_Haram), Al-Shabaab (also known as HSM or Ḥarakat ash-Shabāb al-Mujāhidīn; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Al-Shabaab_(militant_group), and others are involved in mass kidnappings murders, bombing of churches and civilian targets, etc.
The jihadi theology that energizes these attacks is clearly stated in the source documents of Islam – in the Quran and the Hadith (Islamic religious authoritative traditions – see http://davidstent.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/a_perspective_on_islam.pdf). Those same writings call for jihad against the Jewish people and perpetual enmity between faithful Muslims and ‘Jewish unbelievers.’ Though these facts are considered not politically correct and are assiduously avoided by most Western politicians, they are abundantly clear to Middle Easterners, and are referenced by jihadists on a daily basis.
One recent example occurred on May 23, 2014 where the Hizb al-Tahrir terror group held a rally on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem beside the Dome of the Rock, calling for jihad against the Jewish state (http://www.memritv.org/clip_transcript/en/4290.htm; http://www.memritv.org/clip/en/4290.htm).
The fifth column and the sixth pillar
During the Spanish Civil War in 1936, a Nationalist General Emilio Mola said that as his four columns of troops approached Madrid, a ‘fifth column’ of supporters inside the city would support him and undermine the Republican government from within. The term ‘fifth column’ became a byword for sedition and disloyalty. The term was used during the Cold War to describe sleeper cells of Communist spies in the USA or in British counter-intelligence.
Traditional Islam holds to five pillars (www.saudiembassy.net/about/country-information/Islam/five_pillars_of_Islam.aspx), though this classification is based not on the Quran but the Hadith. These essentials include:
- shahada (the Islamic profession of faith)
- salah (the five prescribed daily prayers)
- zakat (almsgiving)
- sawm (the Ramadan fast)
- hajj (the pilgrimage to Mecca).
Armed jihad is considered an essential obligation in the Quran and the Hadith, based on Mohammed’s original words. http://wikiislam.net/wiki/Jihad_is_Compulsory_(Fard) .
Hamas and the sixth pillar of Islam
The jihadi group Hamas (Harakat al-Muqawima al-Islamiyya, or ‘The Islamic Resistance Movement’; see http://davidstent.com/hurtling-through-the-fog-of-war-a-messianic-perspective-on-the-new-hamastan/) is an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood (Jama’at al-Ikhwan al-Muslimin). Its covenantal constitution calls for the following jihad against Israel:
- “The Platform of The Islamic Resistance Movement (ed., Hamas): Israel will rise and will remain erect until Islam eliminates it as it had eliminated its predecessors” (Introduction).
- “The Islamic Resistance Movement…join(s) its hands with those of all Jihad fighters for the purpose of liberating Palestine … Our struggle against the Jews is extremely wide-ranging and grave…until the enemies are defeated and Allah’s victory prevails” (Introduction).
- “The Islamic Resistance Movement…has raised the banner of Jihad in the face of the oppressors in order to extricate the country and the people from the (oppressors’) desecration, filth and evil” (Article #3).
- “The Islamic Resistance Movement…strives to raise the banner of Allah over every inch of Palestine” (Article #6).
- “Hamas has been looking forward to implement Allah’s promise whatever time it might take. The prophet, prayer and peace be upon him, said: ‘The time will not come until Muslims will fight the Jews (and kill them); until the Jews hide behind rocks and trees, which will cry: O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, come on and kill him! This will not apply to the Gharqad, which is a Jewish tree’ (cited by Bukhari and Muslim)” (Article #7).
- “Allah is its goal, the Prophet its model, the Qur’an its Constitution, Jihad its path and death for the case of Allah its most sublime belief (ed. this is also the slogan of the Muslim Brotherhood)” (Article #8 – The Slogan of the Hamas).
- “Nothing is loftier or deeper in nationalism than waging Jihad against the enemy and confronting him when he sets foot on the land of the Muslims. And this becomes an individual duty binding on every Muslim man and woman” (Article #12).
- “In order to face the usurpation of Palestine by the Jews, we have no escape from raising the banner of Jihad … We must imprint on the minds of generations of Muslims that the Palestinian problem is a religious one, to be dealt with on this premise. ‘I swear by that who holds in His Hands the Soul of Muhammad! I indeed wish to go to war for the sake of Allah! I will assault and kill, assault and kill, assault and kill’ (told by Bukhari and Muslim)” (Article #15).
The marriage of Hamas and the PLO
The leadership of the PLO (Yasser Arafat’s terror group, now re-formed as the Palestinian Authority and al-Fatah, originally called Ḥarakat al-Taḥrīr al-Waṭanī al-Filasṭīnī) has joined with Hamas to create a new Palestinian unity government. Since Al-Fatah has continued to be involved in terrorism through its military wing al-Tanzim (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tanzim; www.globalsecurity.org/military/world/para/fatah-tanzim.htm), both partners in this unholy matrimony are in fact committed to terrorism. The only difference is that Hamas is more forthright and truthful in its declarations.
“Do two men walk together unless they have made an appointment? Does a lion roar in the forest when he has no prey? Does a young lion growl from his den unless he has captured something? Does a bird fall into a trap on the ground when there is no bait in it? Does a trap spring up from the earth when it captures nothing at all?” (Amos 3:3-5).
Using the fig-leaf of the Palestinian Authority’s ‘peace partner’ reputation, Hamas is trying to leverage its new status to free itself from the chains of its pariah status as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (http://www.state.gov/j/ct/rls/other/des/123085.htm).
“Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard his spots? Then you also can do good who are accustomed to doing evil” (Jeremiah 13:23).
Matchmaker, matchmaker make me a match
Political leaders in the West immediately jumped over themselves in enthusiasm to recognize the hybrid hydra called the Palestinian unity government. Rather than seeing the subterfuge and calling it by name, they exerted pressure on Israel to “give peace a chance.” The words of the prophet Ezekiel come to mind:
“It is definitely because they have misled My people by saying, ‘Peace!’ when there is no peace. And when anyone builds a wall, behold, they plaster it over with whitewash; so tell those who plaster it over with whitewash, that it will fall. A flooding rain will come, and you, O hailstones, will fall; and a violent wind will break out. Behold, when the wall has fallen, will you not be asked, ‘Where is the plaster with which you plastered it?” Thus I will spend My wrath on the wall and on those who have plastered it over with whitewash; and I will say to you, ‘The wall is gone and its plasterers are gone, along with the prophets …who prophesy to Jerusalem, and who see visions of peace for her when there is no peace,’ declares YHVH God” (Ezekiel 13:10-12, 16)
A time to prepare for war
In the days of the prophet Jeremiah, God issued a warning and a rebuke to the political leaders of his day. “If you have run with footmen and they have tired you out, then how can you compete with horses?” (Jeremiah 12:5). Jeremiah basically was saying that warfare and spiritual pressure were about to increase in the Middle East, and that Israel’s leadership needed to realize this and prepare. Now is not the time for counterfeit peace processes or for compromising with jihadi murderers.
For the past two weeks the nation of Israel has been on lockdown. Three young teenagers who studied at Orthodox Jewish Bible schools were kidnapped by a Hamas gang working out of the Hebron area. Their names are Naftali Fraenkel (age 16, an American citizen), Gilad Sha’er (also 16) and Eyal Yifrach (19). They were seized while waiting at a bus stop where people often hitchhike, near Tekoa, the hometown of the prophet Amos.
Senior Hamas official Ismail al-Ashkar declared in an official statement to the Hamas weekly al-Risala (regarding the kidnapping of the three teenagers), “The kidnapping is a great honor we can neither confirm nor deny” (www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4533168,00.html).
Yet Hamas has made no secret about their previous kidnappings of Israelis:
Over the past two weeks 3,000 Israeli soldiers have put a cordon sanitaire around the Greater Hebron area, going house to house, basement to basement and well to well, literally leaving no stone unturned in their search for the three teenagers and the terror gang holding them hostage. There are dark concerns regarding the lives of these three kids. As well, radical elements within the Arab communities are inciting Molotov cocktail attacks and rioting against patrols of IDF soldiers.
As the enemy rages and as terror raises its ugly head again in Israel,
- Pray for protection for innocents
- Pray for wisdom and revelation for the leaders of all these nations
- Pray for the blunting of evil purposes in each theater of operations
- Pray for boldness and the power of God through witnesses He will raise up
- Pray for the protection and release of the three Israeli teenagers
- Pray for the salvation of Israel
“For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not keep quiet, until her righteousness goes forth like brightness, and her salvation like a torch that is burning…On your walls, O Jerusalem, I have appointed watchmen. All day and all night they will never keep silent. You who remind the Lord, take no rest for yourselves, until He establishes and makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth” (Isaiah 62:1,6-7).
Your prayers and support hold up our arms and are the enablement of God to us in the work He has called us to do!
In Messiah Yeshua,
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