Peace Process and
An open letter from Christians to Christians
The Biblical Perspective
The road to actual peace between Israel and the Arabs is full of
land mines. Whether or not any kind of peace is actually attained,
the Scriptures indicate that this current "peace process," will
precipitate another Arab-Israeli war. Bible-believing Christians
view the "peace process" with great prophetic interest. Those who
have a short prophetic time frame expect this peace process will
position Israel in the prophetic setting of Ezekiel 38:11—dwelling
"at rest," "without walls and having neither bars nor gates." Then
very soon Gog and his associates would invade Israel resulting in
the destruction of our world order (Ezekiel 38 & 39). However,
the Scriptures indicate another war between Israel and the Arabs
before this drama of Ezekiel's prophecy can unfold. Therefore,
whether or not peace is temporarily attained, this "peace process"
will set in motion a series of events that will precipitate another
Arab-Israeli war….But an Israeli-Arab war need only delay Gog's
invasion by a matter of months.
The Rabin-Arafat agreement is at variance with God's agenda in
our prophetic time as "the day for extending your [Israel's]
boundaries" (Micah 7:11).
This peace agreement is intended to actually shrink Israel's
boundaries. Consequently, this agreement will not last. There is
only one nation on earth that has its boundaries decreed in the
Bible. That nation is Israel. Israel's ultimate boundaries are from
the River of Egypt to the Euphrates River (Genesis 15:18-21). These
boundaries will be fully attained in God's Kingdom after this "time
of trouble" or "great tribulation" which terminates our world or age
(Daniel 12:1; Matthew 24:3, 21-22; Zephaniah 3:8,9). (Since the
following prophetic analysis deals with future prophetic details,
these details are presented in the spirit of dialogue. We will
content ourselves here with identifying the minimum territory Israel
will evidently occupy before the "time of trouble" is over and,
incidentally, deal with the immigration of Russian Jews as this
immigration is tied into the "Land issue" scriptures.)
The Israeli-Arab conflict is graphically portrayed in Psalm 83. A
look at a map of the Middle East in Biblical times will identify the
countries involved today. These are the nations that are saying,
"Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of
Israel may be no more in remembrance. For they have consulted
together with one consent; they are confederate against thee" (vss. 4,5).
This confederacy, of course, is a reference to the Arab
nations. Although this Psalm is a prayer to God ("Keep not thou
silence, O God: hold not thy peace…") for the defeat of these
nations ("O my God, make them like a wheel; as the stubble before the
wind…")—the actual conclusion of this conflict is not described.
But the Scriptures reveal how this Arab defeat is accomplished.
The same day Israel is fortifying and expanding her borders,
Micah also describes as a severe time of trouble for the rest of the
earth (Micah 7:11-17, NEW AMERICAN STANDARD):
It will be a day for building your (Israel's) walls. On
that day will your boundary be extended…And the earth will become
desolate because of her inhabitant on account of the fruit of
their deeds…Nations will see and be ashamed of all their
might…They will lick the dust like a serpent…They will come
trembling out of their fortresses; To the LORD our God they will
come in dread.
What a fitting description of the time of trouble! Sandwiched in
this time-of-trouble setting, the Lord is described (vs. 14) as
feeding (Hebrew "ruling"
Israel in a territory that includes "Bashan" (the Golan Heights) and
"Gilead." Half the tribe of Manasseh received all of "Bashan"
(Deuteronomy 3:3,4,13) and Golan was part of Bashan (Joshua 21:27)
and still is. And Gilead is a part of the East Bank of the Jordan
River (See Map VI). The current "peace process" in the Middle East
is negotiating the status of the Golan Heights and the "West Bank."
Can man negotiate with God on the status of His promises to Israel?
If Israel is forced to temporarily compromise Land for peace, the
Scriptures indicate that before the "time of trouble" is over,
Israel will again acquire the Golan Heights and not only the West
Bank—but the East Bank as well.
More Immigration from Russia and the U.S.
An immigration of Jews from "Assyria" and "Egypt" is described by
Zechariah that is so large that it will fill the land of Gilead and
Lebanon (Zechariah 10:10,11). Therefore, Lebanon (at least southern
Lebanon as described in the Book of Joshua) belongs to Israel by
Divine Right (Joshua 13:5,6). Israel already occupies a buffer zone
in southern Lebanon. But an immigration from Assyria and Egypt is
prophetically anticipated that will be so numerically great that
"place shall not be found for them." The people will overfill the
Land of Gilead (East Bank) and at a minimum southern Lebanon.
Literal "Assyria" is Iraq. There are fewer than a thousand Jews
in Iraq and Egypt. This number is hardly enough to fulfill the
prophecy of Zechariah. "Assyria" must be symbolic. For example, in
Micah 5:5-7, Assyria invades Israel just before Israel becomes a
blesser nation (vs. 7). "Assyria" is repelled. Micah's prophecy is
evidently a parallel account of Gog's invasion (Ezekiel 38,39). It
is generally agreed that Gog and some of his associates mentioned
refer to Russia and at least some of the republics of the former
Soviet Union—including the Moslem republics. Therefore, the massive
immigration from a symbolic "Assyria" may be a reference to the
current wave of Jews from Russia and other former Soviet republics.
Also, evidently "Egypt" is symbolic of the Christian world
(Revelation 11:8). Where among the Christian nations are there so
many Jews that could converge on Israel? There are over 5 million
Jews in the United States alone.
In another prophecy in Ezekiel, Israel's ancient exodus from
Egypt is identified as a microcosm of the exodus of Jews from all
nations back to Israel at the end of the Christian Age (Ezekiel 20:32-38).
God is described as bringing the Jews out of the nations
"into the wilderness of the people, and there will I plead with you
face to face. Like as I pleaded with your fathers in the wilderness
In this original exodus Israel had to cross a literal sea and a
river in order to enter the Promised Land. The smiting of the "sea"
and the "river" in Zechariah's prophecy (the Hebrew word here does
not mean the Euphrates but merely a river) seems to be symbolic of
removing obstacles that prohibited the Jews from leaving the former
Soviet Union (Zechariah 10:11). The main obstacle was Communism.
With the breakup of Communism, the massive exodus began. Over a
half-million have immigrated to Israel. This continuing immigration
of Jews is the largest from any country in the world (Jeremiah 16:14,15).
Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that it shall no
more be said, The LORD liveth, that brought up the children of
Israel out of the land of Egypt; but, The LORD liveth, that
brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north
(Russia) and from all the lands whither he had driven them; and I
will bring them again into their land that I gave unto their
"Peace Process" Moves Towards War
Isaiah also prophesies the smiting of a "sea" and a "river"
(again-not the Euphrates as some translations incorrectly read) in
connection with a large immigration of Jews from Assyria to Israel
(Isaiah 11:14-16). The preceding verses show that Israel and Judah
are gathered together from the nations (Isaiah 11:10-12). "Ephraim
shall not envy Judah" (vs. 13) parallels Jeremiah's prophecy where
the ten-tribe "house of Israel" (Ephraim) and the two-tribe "house
of Judah" become one in Diaspora and return "together" to the
Promised Land (Jeremiah 3:18).
Once in the Land, any peace agreement will explode in a two-front
war on Israel's southwest and eastern borders. "They [Israel] shall
fly upon the shoulders of the Philistines toward the west [Gaza
strip on the southwest Mediterranean coast where the Palestinians
now reside]." The Hebrew word for "fly" literally means "a flying
attack from behind." The picture becomes even more vivid since the
Hebrew word for "shoulders," can refer to a maritime coast, "the
side [shoulder] of the sea" (Numbers 34:11). Any Palestinian state
or self-rule on the Gaza Strip will be short-lived. Eventually,
Israel by missiles or planes will fly out into the Mediterranean and
attack the Palestinians from behind. What about the eastern front?
"They [Israel] will possess Edom and Moab. And the sons of Ammon
will be subject to them" (Isaiah 11:14, NAS).
These Old Testament nations occupied territories that are now
within the Arab nation of Jordan on the East Bank of the Jordan
River and the Dead Sea (See Map VI). A war in which Israel defeats
Jordan and occupies portions of Jordan (Gilead, Ammon, Moab and
Edom) could spark a wave of worldwide anti-Semitism and precipitate
a further mass exodus (vs. 16) from Russia and the former Soviet
Republics, "And there will be a highway from Assyria for the remnant
of His people who will be left…"
Gog is spoken of as coming from the "northern parts" (Ezekiel
38:14,15). While many prophecies speak of a regathering from all the
nations, an emigration "out of the land of the north" (which seems
to be the land of Gog, or the former Soviet Republics) is
particularly emphasized (Jeremiah 16:14,15; 31:7,8; 23:8; 3:18).
First, a small number would return, "one of a city, and two of a
family" (Jeremiah 3:14-18). From 1878 to the fall of Communism in
1990, relatively few Russian Jews did return. A prophecy in Isaiah
contrasts this trickle immigration ("gathered one by one") with the
time when "the great trumpet shall be blown" and there would be a
massive return (Isaiah 27:12,13). What "great trumpet" is this? The
Jubilee Trumpet of old was a signal to return rights that were lost
(Leviticus 25). Today the trumpet blast of human rights brought down
Communism and over a half-million Jews fled to Israel. What will
precipitate this even greater immigration wave from "the north"? The
next massive immigration wave from the former Soviet Republics to
Israel might occur after the next Arab-Israeli war as indicated in
Isaiah 11:14-16. Time will reveal if this conclusion is a valid
The decisive victory over the Palestinians in Gaza on the west
and Moab, Ammon and Edom on the east already considered in Isaiah
are paralleled in Zephaniah (Isaiah 11:14 and Zephaniah 2:2-7). The
setting is during "the day of the Lord's anger" (vs. 2). A complete
defeat of the Philistines in the Gaza area is described. Of course,
the literal Philistines have long since passed off the scene, but
they are symbolic of the Palestinians who now occupy that territory.
Ironically, one of the fanciful claims of the Palestinians is that
they are descendants of the Philistines while simultaneously
claiming to be descendants of Abraham. The origin of the
Palestinians is identified by Ezekiel (36:1-7). The Lord is angry
with "the people round about [Arabs]" the Land of Israel who came
into the land and made it a desolation. The Lord will punish these
self-styled Palestinians (see map on inside back cover).
Zephaniah also indicts Moab and Ammon for all their abuses
towards Israel. "I have heard the reproach of Moab and Ammon,
whereby they have reproached my people and magnified themselves
against their [Israel's] border" (Zephaniah 2:8). The Lord spared
ancient Moab and Ammon during Israel's wilderness journey, but not
modern Moab and Ammon which is the Arab nation of Jordan. During the
Israeli War of Independence in 1948, it was Jordan who captured the
"West Bank" and the Bible Jerusalem ("magnified themselves against
their borders"). It was Jordan who expelled all Jews from the West
Bank and East Jerusalem ("they have reproached my people"). It was
Jordan who occupied Judea and Samaria (wrongfully calling them the
"West Bank") until Israel's victory in the 1967 War. It was Jordan
who destroyed all Jewish holy places in Jerusalem. Also it was
Jordan with the Palestinians who sided with Saddam Hussein during
Desert Storm in the hope he would fulfill his threat to "scorch half
of Israel." Now in the "peace process," King Hussein of Jordan with
dignity and poise knows how to say all the right things and the past
is forgotten. But the Lord has not forgotten. Because of these sins,
Moab and Ammon (parts of modern Jordan) shall become "a perpetual
desolation: the residue of my people [Israel] shall spoil them, and
the remnant of my people [Israel] shall possess them" (Zephaniah 2:9).
Thus the Scriptures forecast that before the invasion of Gog,
Israel will gain more Land and more people. What may precipitate
these two factors would be an Arab-Israeli war which would expand
Israel's borders and simultaneously stimulate world anti-Semitism.
Worldwide anti-Semitism, in turn, would precipitate a greater flood
of immigration to the Land.