By John Stembridge
Many are saying the reason for the bombing of the World Trade Center Twin Towers in NYC, September 11th was that the United States is too closely aligned with Israel. Letís examine that premise a little closer
First, it is true that American foreign policy is committed to Israelís peace and safety within secure borders. The question here is: which borders? The 1947 borders established by the U.N.? The post 1967 borders which included Judea and Samaria, plus East Jerusalem with the Temple Mount? Or the current Mitchell plan pushed by Secretary of State Colon Powell that would give Judea, Samaria, East Jerusalem and the Holy Places to Arafat? Or is it the plan of Al Qaeda terrorists who would place Israelís borders completely off the land and squarely in the Mediterranean?
Each of these proposals is being made completely ignorant of, for lack of consulting the plans of a Higher Authority, namely HaShem Ė God. Each of them reflects manís weak attempts to establish justice with peace for Israel and the Palestinians.
The Jabez Connection
Everyone knows something about Israel and the Oslo Accords. Israel and the Oslo Accords have been in the worldwide media for years. And Israel, of course, is mentioned so many times throughout the Torah and Tenach [The Hebrew Scriptures]. Unfortunately very few know anything about Jabez.
Compared to the giants of Israel, i.e., Moses, Joshua, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Samuel, David, Solomon, etc., Jabez may be considered insignificant. He is mentioned only once in the Tenach Ė I Chronicles 4:9-10.
What does the Tenach reveal to us about this man of mystery? First, he was more honorable than his brothers. Secondly, his mother named him Jabez which means pain, distress, sorrow. Thirdly, he had a hunger to know God and to receive His blessing. Fourthly, he was important enough to God that HaShem granted him his request.
Letís examine Jabez a little closer by examining his request to HaShem. This we find in I Chronicles 4:10:
ďAnd Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, ĎOh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, and that Your hand might be with me, and that You keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me.í And God granted him that which he requested.Ē
Now, letís look at the similarities of Israel and Jabez. Both were born in pain. Israel was born when Jacobís name was changed to Israel after he was left crippled from pleading with the Angel of the Lord all night so that his life could be spared. God granted his request. The next day Esau wept in his arms instead of killing Jacob as he had intended. That night so altered the personality of Jacob that God changed his name from Jacob which means supplanter, to Israel which means Prince with God! (Genesis 32 & 33)
The same is true with modern Israel. It, too, was born in pain and sorrow Ė the pain and sorrow of the Holocaust that killed 6 million Jews, plus 49 million non-Jews. Only after such carnage, did Israel become a State in 1948.
How do the Oslo Accords tie into Israel and Jabez? Mainly they, too, have brought pain and sorrow. Unlike Jabez, both Israel and the Palestinians in the Oslo Accords sought the blessing (billions) of the United States rather than the blessings of HaShem. The only ones blessed by the Oslo Accords so far are the Israeli and Palestinian bankers and their political allies. But what about the Israeli and Palestinian families who are mourning their dead and injured? What blessings have the Oslo Accords brought them?
Jabez asked God to enlarge his territory. Israelís leaders through the Oslo Accords sought the opposite: the diminishing of its territories and holy places. Both Judea and Samaria have even been parted from Godís people. Though Israel has been a State 53 years, the Jews are not allowed to pray and worship on the Temple Mount, thanks to Moshe Dyan and all subsequent governments.
Jews cannot safely go to Hebron to honor their patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, nor for that matter Ė Bethlehem, Jericho, Josephís and Samuelís tombs.
If Israel received billions from the United States to part with Judea and Samaria, what price will Israel be required to pay in blood and money to reclaim and redeem Judea and Samaria that have been parted? Already the price is too great when Israelis cannot go into restaurants, ride buses to work or to shop, etc., without the fear of being blown into eternity.
To this day Ariel Sharon is the only one of Israelís modern leaders who has called to the nationsí combined conscience and attention the fact that when it comes to the Temple Mount, Jews and Christians are second class citizens. Both have to pray at a wall at the bottom of the Temple Mount instead of the top where both Solomonís and Herodís Temples were located Ė where both expect a Holy King will reign over the universe soon.
Observant Jews knew only the Temple Mount as THE PLACE of worship for every Jew who loved HaShem until the Second Temple was destroyed in 70 CE. Since that time Judaism and the tribes have been scattered into the four corners of the earth. Without the regathering of all the tribes to the Land, the restoration of the Temple Mount and the Levitical priesthood, it is impossible for Judaism to keep all 613 mitzvahs of the Torah today.
It is only in this generation that we have seen over 1 million Jews leave the former Soviet Union, and thousands from Europe, from Arab countries, Ethiopia, etc. return to the land because of persecution and pogroms. There have been significant Aliyahs from the North, South and East, but no significant Aliyah from the West where over half the Jews of the world live today. Will it take a pogrom or holocaust in the West for the Jews here to wake up to their personal need of making Aliyah? Letís hope not. (Aliyah is the Hebrew word for immigration.)
When will the Jews in the West be willing to lay down the onions, leaks and garlic of North, Central and South America to obtain the greater treasurers HaShem has awaiting them in Zion? As soon as this awakening of the Jews in the West takes place for Aliyah, Israel will need more land, not less. What will HaShem do to provide for this massive ingathering of the tribes?
Both Sides of the Coin
It is true that the Palestinians have lived the 53 years of Israelís existence in camps, mostly in poverty with lack of adequate education, health care or economic opportunity. Many people blame this upon Israel.
But letís examine the plight of the Palestinians before Israelís statehood. For nearly 2,000 years, the Palestinians had a chance to reclaim the desert and establish peace and prosperity the same as Israel Ė yet chose to live in poverty with lack of adequate education, health care or economic opportunity.
Now letís contrast their plight with that of Israel.
In the 53 years of Israelís rebirth from the ashes of Auschwitz, the Israelis rolled up their sleeves and with their own effort and sweat turned a desert into a garden. Today Israel is the rose capital of the world. It grows more food per acre than any equivalent spot on earth. Itís fruit and vegetables are shipped to its Moslem neighbors and to many countries around the world.
Israel is the diamond capital of the world. The Technion and Chaim Weismann Institute are making great advances in science, medicine and advanced technology. Israel is the third military power in the world today.
Obstacles to Peace
None of the current proposed solutions offered by the U.S., U.N. or Al Qaeda are taking into consideration of these truths: (1) both Jews and Christians are not permitted to pray today on the Temple Mount. Only Moslems are allowed to pray there. Jews and Christians have to pray at a wall at the bottom of the Temple Mount. This must change immediately for true justice with peace to come to <->Jerusalem, Middle East and the world.
(2) Jews and Christians also cannot pray safely in Hebron at the Tombs of the Patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
(3) The same is true in Bethlehem, the birthplace of King David and Yahshua, Samuelís mountain or Josephís tomb in Nablus.
There will never be justice with peace in Jerusalem or Israel until the redeemed from all nations, colors and languages have equal access to all their holy places at all times, day and night throughout every year. To think otherwise is like spitting into the wind and it only returning to splat on your own face.
Failure of the Mitchell/Oslo Plan
Another factor not considered by the Mitchell/Oslo plan is the regathering of the 13 tribes from the nations to the land. Today only 5 million of the estimated 15-18 million Jews of the world live in Israel.
These fifteen to eighteen million Jews make up primarily three of the tribes: Judah, Benjamin and Levi. After King Solomon, the kingdom was split into two: Judah in the South and Ephraim (or Israel) in the North. As previously stated, Judah was composed [mainly] of three tribes; Ephraim was composed of ten. Ephraim/Israel or the ten tribes were scattered and lost their identity among the nations.
But in Ezekiel 36 and 37 HaShem promises to resurrect all Israel from the valley of dry bones (nations) and bring them back to Zion. HaShem has a plan to accomplish this task.
First, He says that for every Jew who returns to the land, ten non-Jews, whom I choose to call Ephraimites, will return with them (Zech. 8:23). Today there are five million Jews in the land. That means ten Ephraimites to every Jew, which would mean another fifty million are yet to return.
Hypothetically, suppose all eighteen million Jews hear the voice of HaShem and return to Him and to the home that He gave them as an inheritance forever. That means eighteen million Jews, plus 180 million Ephraimites are yet to return.
For HaShemís plan to be accomplished, Israel needs more land, not less. He is a God of order.
The Stembridge Plan
There are an estimated one and a half billion Moslems in the world. There are two to 2.2 billion Christians in the world. There are only 15 to 18 million Jews in the world.
Since the Moslems and Christians have so many nations which occupy over half the earth, wouldnít one think that all the Moslems and Christians of the world would gladly allow the Jews, who have only one nation out of 200 + in the earth, to have adequate land in the Middle East for a home?
If so, why does the U.S., the U.N., Moslem and Christian nations nickel and dime Israel to death? Isnít it time for some Moslem and Christian statesmen to arise out of the ashes of the twin World Trade Center Towers and become advoates for the Jews and Ephraimites having adequate land for their regathering?
Today the industrialized nations are concerned about oil to run their factories, schools, homes and transportation systems. To keep the oil flowing unhindered, pipelines run from Alaska, Russia, Tunisia, etc.
In like manner, we need to run water pipelines from Europe, Africa and Asia to the desert nations of the Middle East to reforest and vegetate these lands in order to turn them into the Garden of Eden once more.
If Israel can turn a desert into a garden in 53 years, then with the knowledge, technology and power available to us today, the entire Middle East can easily be transformed from a desert to a garden within 25 years. Water, forests, vegetation will attract the rain and seasons to the region once more.
As water and rain soften dry land and make it a garden, so, too the water and rain of HaShemís Spirit of love and forgiveness will soften a heart hardened by resentment, unforgiveness, hatred, murder and war. Letís let the natural and spiritual water irrigate the land and hearts of the people and nations of Abraham. This plan will turn the Middle East into an oasis of unity, love, peace, health, educational and economic well being for all people.
Since Jabezís prayer was so powerful and successful, perhaps our generation can use it as a guide in our daily prayers for Israel.
ďAnd Israel called on God, saying, ĎOh that You will bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory and that your hand might be with me, and that You keep me from evil that it may not grieve me!í And may HaShem grant our request.Ē -