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  1. Today
  2. Wow! That's quite a revolutionary article, Nicola!
  3. Hanna Heath Writes what scares her
  4. "I will drown! No one shall save me!"
  5. The Israel-Palestinian Problem: A Biblical Solution by Teddy L. Desta (2003) The problem in the Middle East, particularly the relationship Israel and Palestinians, can be solved only if any man-made peace plan respects the Word of God. This what I see in God’s Word regarding the Israel-Palestinian problem, also Jewish-Arab relationship. - Unlike any other geographical place, God has made clear statements regarding the Holy Land. If He has not, then we will be free to let the best of political thought and diplomatic practice to guide our reaction to the region’s problem. However, God out of His infinite wisdom has chosen that place for His own plans. We just need to primarily know His mind and then follow His blueprint for the region. The Holy Land’s politics should be understood only in the light of the Bible. We should make the Bible our starting place. To do otherwise is to setup ourselves for failure. - Today a large section of the world believes that justice for Palestinians can be realized only by granting their demand for their own independent state. There is one major problem with this position — it goes against the plan of God for the Holy Land. If we believe in the Bible as the Word of God, then we must follow its instructions. We should not allow human idealism to make God’s word null and void. If need be, let God be true and all humanity be a liar (cf. Rom 3:4). - Let us start what the Bible says about the Holy Land, the Promised Land God gave to ancient Israelite. The Bible clearly indicates that the so-called occupied territories lie within Israel’s ancient heritage. More than in God’s original gift, but also in what God said would happen after Jews’ restoration to the land after their long exile, God has included the so-called occupied territories as part of Israel’s inheritance. God has clearly stated these lands now settled by Palestinians to be restored to the Jewish polity when He brings the Jews back to the Holy Land in the last days (See Micah 7: 14-16; Obadiah 17 –21; Zephaniah 2: 4-9). Any man-made peace plan could succeed only to the extent it shows knowledge and respect to these divine words. - God said He will judge those nations including the Jews themselves if they interfere with the plan His stated through His prophets. He has said He cannot tolerate with any man-made plan that interferes with His plan. He said He would evict those nations who harass Israel, who try to evict it from its lands as God gave those to it. Even Jews must follow God’s plan regarding the land. There is hope for neighboring nations only if they follow God’s ways (Word), which includes Israel’s right to exist in borders as defined by the Bible. "This is what the LORD says: "As for all my wicked neighbors who seize the inheritance I gave my people Israel, I will uproot them from their lands and I will uproot the people of Judah from among them. But after I uproot them, I will again have compassion and will bring each of them back to their own inheritance and their own country. And if they learn well the ways of my people and swear by my name, saying, 'As surely as the LORD lives'--even as they once taught my people to swear by Baal--then they will be established among my people. But if any nation does not listen, I will completely uproot and destroy it," declares the LORD.” (Jer. 12: 14-17) - God has clear warning that He will discipline Palestinians for any enmity they could carry against the Jews. God declares that He will purge Palestinians of any hate towards the Jews. God clearly anticipates a hatred towards Jews by Palestinians. God declares that He will do something that would cleanse the mind of Palestinians of any hatred towards Jews. God promises Palestinians an elevation and an empowerment. He promises them an honored position in the Jewish polity. "Ashkelon will see it and fear; Gaza will writhe in agony, and Ekron too, for her hope will wither. Gaza will lose her king and Ashkelon will be deserted. a mixed people shall dwell in Ashdod, and I will cut off the pride of Philistia. And I will remove their blood from their mouth, and their detestable things from between their teeth. Then they also will be a remnant for our God, and be like a clan in Judah, and Ekron like a Jebusite." (Zechariah 9: 5-8) Hence, what God has in mind is not a two-states solution. What God’s plan is that Jews and Palestinians should live together, peacefully, in the Holy Land as defined by the Bible. What God has in mind is first to do deep work of cleansing about the Palestinians. They must first see that the Jew belong to the Holy Land. They must abandon any plan to push them into the sea at worst or rule over them as second-class-citizens at best. Palestinians must accept God’s plan that the Jew must rule in the land where they will be also important ruling-partners. Any man-made peace plan which tries to overlook God’s peace plan is doomed to failure. - Some people would reject the idea of a one-state solution. They reject even God’s plan of one-state solution! For them, Jew and Palestinian are so different culturally and have wounded each other so deeply that to try to make them live in one-state is unwise and impractical. But there is scriptural precedence where Jews and Palestinians co-existed and cooperated. King David was who built the first unified Jewish state. King David was a religious Jew of the first order and he was a Jew nationalist par excellence. But King David’s chosen bodyguard elite force was made of Philistines. "All his servants marched past him—all the Cherethites and Pelethites, and six hundred Gittites who had followed him from Gath. The king said to Ittai the Gittite, "Why should you come along with us? Go back and stay with King Absalom. You are a foreigner, an exile from your homeland. You came only yesterday. And today shall I make you wander about with us, when I do not know where I am going? Go back, and take your people with you. May the LORD show you kindness and faithfulness." But Ittai replied to the king, "As surely as the LORD lives, and as my lord the king lives, wherever my lord the king may be, whether it means life or death, there will your servant be." (2 Sam 15: 18-21) King David had fought the Palestinians (i.e., Philistines) in several skirmishes. But he knew how to make peace with his enemies. He knew how to give them an honored and trusted position in his army. It is this kind of relationship between Jew and Palestinian that God vows to bring about. - God’s peace plan — to the surprise of many — includes the East Bank! This is because the original Promised Land includes lands on the west bank of the Jordan River. This is the land given to the tribes of Reuben, Gad and half the tribe of Manasseh (Numbers 32, Joshua 13:15-23). That is the original situation. But what God has a plan for the land, for the future post-exile Jewish state, includes the east bank of the Jordan, the traditional land of these three tribes. (See Jer. 30:3). Gilead (i.e., the pasture land in the east bank of the Jordan), is mentioned as part of Israel’s restored land. "But I will bring Israel back to their own pasture, and they will graze on Carmel and Bashan; their appetite will be satisfied on the hills of Ephraim and Gilead." (Jer. 50:19) "O LORD, protect your people with your shepherd’s staff; lead your flock, your special possession. Though they live alone in a thicket on the heights of Mount Carmel, let them graze in the fertile pastures of Bashan and Gilead as they did long ago." (Micaiah 7:14) God’s plan is to restore even the east bank of the Jordan to Israel’s polity. But today the lands of Ruben, Gad, and half the tribe of Manasseh are now part of the Kingdom of Jordan, and they are predominantly Palestinian in composition. Hence, God’s plan envisions bringing all Palestinians (those in Gaza, West and East Bank) under the Holy Land polity which will be Jewish in state profile. God’s plan recognizes a Palestinian people whose rights are recognized and respected, and who enjoy political power within the Israeli state. God vision, hence, is a one-state solution which is just and fair for both peoples. God’s vision about Gilead suggests confederation between the state of Israel and the Kingdom of Jordan. - God has also a greater plan for the Middle East region, that is about Israel and Arab relationship. God promises to do the unthinkable about Jew-Arab relationship which has been a source of war and friction in the Middle East for decades. Arabs nations traditionally considered moderate as well as radical in terms of their relationships with the Jewish state are destined by God to develop a cordial relationship with the state of Israel. For example, the prophet Isaiah writes: "In that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria. The Assyrians will go to Egypt and the Egyptians to Assyria. The Egyptians and Assyrians will worship together. In that day Israel will be the third, along with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing on the earth. The LORD Almighty will bless them, saying, "Blessed be Egypt my people, Assyria my handiwork, and Israel my inheritance." (Isaiah 19: 23-25) According to God’s plan, in terms of relationship with the state of Israel, a moderate Arab state (for example, Egypt), a radical Arab state (for example, Iraq) will have a positive relationship with Israel. The trio will form an axis of blessing from God for the world. God will make the Middle East a peaceful place as He brings together these irreconcilable forces which have been behind the turmoil and war in the region for so long. - God’s Word of speaks, although not much, about Iran, using its ancient names such as Elam, Medes, and Persia. Iran may first face turmoil, war and exile (Is. 22: 5-11, Jer. 49: 34-37). Then God promises to place His throne in Elam, which is a promise to turn Iranians to His faith. The Word carries a promise to end current anti-Israel regime in Iran. "I will establish my sovereignty over Elam. I will destroy their king and their leaders," says the LORD. "Yet in days to come I will reverse Elam's ill fortune." says the LORD" (Jer. 49: 37-38). One of the big problems for settling peace between Israel and Palestinians has been the regime in Iran. Here God promises to remove a regime in Iran and substitute it with a government open to His will. Advise for Israel - Israel should be careful not to illegally dispossess Palestinians or marginalize them. Current Israel must emulate its forefathers such Abraham, Joshua, and King David in treating Palestinians with fairness and justice. For example, Abraham, though promised the land, when offered a cave to bury his wife for free, he insisted to pay for it (see Genesis 23). Abraham did not feel entitled to get the land for free. He did not try to take advantage of God’s promise in engaging in unfair deal with the indigenous people. He respected their property rights. - God ordered King David to build a sacrifice altar at Mount of Moriah. But the place wanted the altar to be built belonged to a Jebusite farmer, someone from an indigenous people. Although King David was the most powerful person in the nation he did not try to expropriate the farmer and use his land to build an altar to God. Even if the farmer wanted to give the land for free to his king, David insisted in paying for the land (2 Sam 24:24). David never abused his kingly power (cf. Jer. 22:15-16). He never used religion as a cover to take away property from his people, Jew or non-Jew. - God’s orders Israel to be a just and fair-minded people when it comes to the weak, the poor and the stranger (Deut. 24: 14, 16; 25: 13-16; Isaiah 10: 1-2). (See also Prov. 20:10, 20:23, 21:22).
  6. Here's an ice cream cake!! Congrats again!!
  7. Ah, the truth. What would storytelling be without a little fabrication? 😉
  8. jonjovi

    Being A Believer

    What made me become a believer? Simply put, not wanting to go to Hell. I believe my faith has been tested and because of that I am stronger in my faith. If God came to me today hearing him say I love you and am always here for you would be amazing! I know it is in his word, but to hear it would be just wow.
  9. Thank you! Happy fathers day to all the dads out there!
  10. Yesterday
  11. I don't tend to use the real names of places in my writing. I used Southport, NC for a historical fiction, and Charleston, SC, for a treasure hunting series, but I don't think that matters. As for businesses, hotels, or restaurants, I make up the names.
  12. Been thinking about this thread. I wonder if 'traditional publishers; also use POD and ebooks to promote their writers books? If they did not it would seem they are very naïve in thier marketing. Surely all our work is God inspired? 
  13. I'd still be hesitant, but then, I'm a coward at heart.
  14. Try writing a few short stories to hone your skills and let this story rest for a bit. Or write short stories that might be incorporated later into the future ones. And I might add that a 63 is not that old! You may have many good years ahead of you, disabled or not.
  15. "Will" and "shall." "Going to" works fine, but it gets clumsy in a hurry. It also seems incomplete, because telling the reader what someone will do is not fixed as telling the reader what someone has done. Even "shall" (which is mandatory in legal terms) isn't guaranteed, because things happen to keep us from doing what we expect to do. ("Might" is even less definite.)
  16. I don't have the confidence and experience to be a beta reader. but I am definitely looking forward to reaing it when it is published. what did you name it?
  17. your response is very interesting. I was surprised that a difference of only 8 mils can determine accents, though on second thought I shouldn't be. there must be certain places here where the line is drawn between one accent and another in order to have such a diversity. even deciding which southern accent for two of my characters or listening to my young granddaughter's north Carolina accent versus our oklahoma accent has resulted in a lot of extra research. your area sounds beautiful and peaceful. I do love the woods. thank you for the religious information. my lunchtime companions, who are also members of our prayer group, will enjoy hearing it..
  18. I am witnessing a phenomenon that has taken me off guard. On one hand, I see undernourished Believers struggling to exhibit Biblical truths, and on the other hand, I see Christians full of Biblical knowledge with no actions. Sadly, there are many Believers who do not open their Bibles on a daily basis. It is not difficult to identify who they are for their actions do not compliment the Word. Then there are those that display “Biblical gluttony.” They know the Scriptures inside out. They can recite the books of the Bible. They know Biblical addresses. The problem is they are so engulfed in the Word that they don’t take time to live what they read. Knowing what the Word says and not exhibiting its content has a direct correlation to the lack of evangelistic conversions. I have always promoted the phrase, READ THE WORD, but that is only part of the ingredient to being a Christian. LIVE THE WORD is what puts the Believer out into the world with the Gospel message. Why is it that Christians act like Christians when they are around Christians, but fail to act like a Christian when around those who do not believe? What good is it to know Scriptures if one fails to show the Scripture through one’s life? People knew the Apostle Paul and what kind of man he was. He told the Thessalonians that they knew “What manner of men we were among you for your sakes.” (I Thessalonians 1:5) Paul lettered Timothy and reminded him that he knew his “doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, charity…” (II Timothy 3:9. 10) It seems today that the world has a hard time distinguishing Christians from the general populace. The only definable difference would be that the Believers have a tendency to point out the sins of their counter parts instead of the righteousness of Jesus. When Christians center on the sinfulness of man and not on the “sinlessness” of Jesus, we have lost the vision. When Believers are more interested in their “salvational” status than the spiritual condition of the lost, we have lost our way. They know what the Scripture says and they have accepted the “ticket to Heaven,” so there is no need to read the Bible because they are all set. Other Believers are so full of the Word that they are hindered from “mobility.” I have a leaf blower that is hard to start. It is full of the right gas mixture, but some days I can pull and pull and it just won’t start. A neighbor told me that I probably flooded the carburetor. When you over prime the blower, it will not start. It is the same way with the Christian. You can flood your mind with the Word to such a degree that you are unable to motivate yourself to action. The Word is to be used, not stored. Of course, the Word is to be held within each Believer, so when the situation arises we will be able to recall what we have “hidden” within the recesses of our heart and minds, but the Word is to be displayed through our actions. When we fail to work the Word, it becomes a history book. A sinner does not know he is a sinner until he is convicted by the Holy Spirit through the representation of the Word of God. If Believers use the Word as a hammer to present the Truth, they are misguided. Instead of Christians pointing out the world’s sins, they need to point to a loving Jesus that is willing to say to the sinner, as He did to the adulteress woman, “Neither do I condemn thee: go and sin no more.” (John 8:11) READ THE WORD, LIVE THE WORD!
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