President Obama is winding up his whirlwind tour of Islamic dictatorships. He has received golden gifts and has given, in exchange, golden complements, saying of Saudi King Abdullah, “I’ve been struck by his wisdom and graciousness” as well as “his generosity.” The President spoke with reporters before touching down in Saudi Arabia, declaring that he “thought it was very important to come to the place where Islam began and to seek His Majesty’s counsel.”
At their meeting, King Abdullah referred to “the historic and strategic ties between our two countries, I believe that go back to the time of the meeting between the late [President] Franklin Delano Roosevelt and the late [Saudi] King Abdul-Aziz.”
During that memorable and historic meeting which occurred on the USS Quincy on Egypt’s Great Bitter Lake on February 14 1945 (the closing days of WWII), the Saudi King asked and received a promise from Roosevelt that the USA would “do nothing to assist the Jews against the Arabs and would make no move hostile to the Arab people.” These assurances were confirmed in a letter dated April 5 1945 and signed by Roosevelt, acting in his capacity as the Chief of the Executive Branch of the US government (www.mideastweb.org/roosevelt.htm).
It is to be hoped that President Obama was not seeking King Abdullah’s counsel, wisdom and graciousness regarding American policies toward the Jewish state.
These recent events find their proper context in the rueful reflections of former CIA case officer Robert Baer. In an article titled “The Fall Of The House Of Saud” (May 2003, The Atlantic, www.theatlantic.com/doc/200305/baer), Baer explains:
“Not all the wishing in the world will change the basic reality of the situation.
- Saudi Arabia controls the largest share of the world’s oil and serves as the market regulator for the global petroleum industry.
- No country consumes more oil, and is more dependent on Saudi oil, than the United States.
- The United States and the rest of the industrialized world are therefore absolutely dependent on Saudi Arabia’s oil reserves, and will be for decades to come.
- If the Saudi oil spigot is shut off, by terrorism or by political revolution, the effect on the global economy, and particularly on the economy of the United States, will be devastating.
- Saudi oil is controlled by an increasingly bankrupt, criminal, dysfunctional, and out-of-touch royal family that is hated by the people it rules and by the nations that surround its kingdom.”
“What is truth?” (Pontius Pilate, John 18:38)
In a strategic “off the cuff” interview with the New York Times’ Thomas Friedman just prior to his Arabian tour, President Obama gave some insight into his own pragmatic values vis-à-vis God’s restoration of the Jewish people to the Promised Land. “We have a joke around the White House,” the President said. “We’re just going to keep on telling the truth until it stops working – and nowhere is truth-telling more important than the Middle East.”
One of the wonderful flowerings of the image of God in man is to know the truth, to speak the truth and to do the truth. The God of the Bible says that YHVH is the only true God (Deut.6:4; Mark 12:29); that any god with a name other than YHVH is a demon (Exod.3:15; Psalm 96:5; Deut.6:3); and that in Yeshua only is the Truth, the Way and the Life (John 14:6 – see my booklet “A Perspective On Islam”, at http://davidstent.com/words/).
Koranic Islam flatly denies these teachings, and therefore it presents a challenge to every Bible believer – is the Koran truthful when it denies the incarnation of Yeshua, the deity of the Son, the reality of the crucifixion, the irrevocable gifts and calling of Israel, etc? And are believers in Yeshua required to have the backbone to tell the truth according to the Holy Scriptures about these matters, or is truth relative and unimportant?
Though Obama states in Cairo that “Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance,” the Koran and Islamic religious texts deny this. When the President stands in the shadows of Cairo’s Al Azhar University (Islam’s oldest theological seminary) and hints that “among some Muslims, there is a disturbing tendency to measure one’s own faith by the rejection of another’s” – he is trivializing the unpleasant truth that Al Azhar and the Koran clearly reject Christianity and Judaism as viable faith alternatives, and that they call for the denigration, enslavement or destruction of these religions’ followers.
President Obama’s end-time vision is that “all of us have a responsibility to work for the day when … the Holy Land of three great faiths is the place of peace that God intended it to be; when Jerusalem is a secure and lasting home for Jews and Christians and Muslims”. Yet the Scriptures actually state that the land of Israel is a gift to the nation of Israel alone (Ezekiel 39:25-29; 48:29), and that unfriendly Gentiles who settle there over the ages will not have any guaranteed inheritance (Ezek.36:1-15; Neh. 2:20). President Obama’s last days vision may sound nobly inclusive, but it is not God’s truth.
Truth or Consequences
Though some believers believe that God has only concealed and private perspectives about the kingdoms of this earth, or that He has no real opinions about how the nations are attempting to divide the land of Israel, the Scriptures do present a radically different truth. The prophets of Israel declare that the return of Yeshua will happen when the nations divide the city of Jerusalem and exile Jewish people from half of the city (Zech.14:1-3). The judgment of all nations in the Valley of Jehoshaphat will be based on the nations dividing up the land of Israel and exiling Jewish people from parts of it (Joel 3:1-3). The borders of the land of Israel are God’s idea (Deut. 32:9-11) and the rebellion of the nations against this point will not cause Him to change His view of the truth (Psalm 2). The judgments of God await any and all comers who defy the truth of God’s word.
President Obama stated to Thomas Friedman that Israel’s desire to hold onto its God-given land “is unsustainable” and that “they need to make some tough choices on settlements.” He stated that his solution for the conflict between Islam and the Jews is “a two-state solution” and that this division of the land of Israel is in the Jewish people’s “long-term interest.”
On May 27 2009 Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declared in the Benjamin Franklin Room of the White House, “With respect to settlements, the President was very clear when Prime Minister Netanyahu was here. He wants to see a stop to settlements – not some settlements, not outposts, not natural growth exceptions. We think it is in the best interests of the effort that we are engaged in that settlement expansion cease. That is our position. That is what we have communicated very clearly, not only to the Israelis but to the Palestinians and others. And we intend to press that point” (www.state.gov/secretary/rm/2009a/05/124009.htm).
Biblical truths taught in Baptist and Methodist Sunday School are often abandoned by upwardly mobile politicians as they scramble up the governmental ladder. But even after one gets to the very top, in the final analysis we will all be weighed and sifted based on whether or not we “trust and obey” the truth of God’s Word. “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Messiah, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad” (2 Cor.5:10).
- Pray for President Obama, for Secretary of State Clinton, and for all the counselors and advisors in State, Defense and Intelligence, that they may receive God’s heart and revelation concerning Israel. Pray that they will “be obedient to the Heavenly vision” (Acts 26:19).
- Pray that God would use these men and women as watercourses in His hand (Proverbs 21:1-3), turning their hearts in the direction that He wants .
- Pray that God will have mercy on the United States of America and on all countries who lift their hand to divide God’s Promised Land.
- Pray that God will reveal the Messiah Yeshua to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to his advisors, and to the whole House of Israel. Pray that God will give them all His heart and strategies for dealing with American suggestions, Iranian/Hezbollah/Hamas/Palestinian terror threats, and for ruling this country in justice, wisdom and graciousness.
In Messiah Yeshua,
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