This week on 'The Hal Lindsey Report'
The plight of the Palestinians is one of the most divisive geopolitical issues in the world today. The irony is that it's a completely manufactured issue. (Remember the flak Newt Gingrich took when he correctly labeled the Palestinians an "invented people?")
A recent study shows that less than 30,000 Palestinian Arabs can be classified as "refugees" as normally defined by the "United Nations Convention on Refugees." These are what remain of the original 750,000 Arabs displaced by the 1948 war in Israel. (And that's still fewer than the number of Jews chased from their homes throughout the Middle East at the time.)
Yet UNRWA (the United Nations Relief and Works Agency that specifically caters to Palestinian "refugees") pays benefits to 5 million so-called Palestinian refugees. How can that be? It's because the UN suspended the rules that apply to everyone else in the world in order to accommodate the Palestinians.
Why should you care? Other than the fact that since you're reading this message you probably care deeply about Israel and the danger she faces from the world at large, this issue directly affects the American taxpayer. Since the U.S. provides a quarter of UNRWA's budget, that means you and I are paying for benefits to more than 1.2 million Palestinians who cannot (according to normal U.N. standards) be classified as refugees.
And for those of us who know something about the danger to Israel posed by millions of Palestinian Arabs who yearn for the utter destruction of the Jews, this is a rather galling predicament.
But, it should come as no surprise to those of us who are familiar with the Bible prophecies concerning Jerusalem and Israel in these final days. 2,600 years ago, the prophet Zechariah predicted that Jerusalem would become such an object of obsession with the world, that those who tried to dominate and manage the issue would be "cut in pieces."
But it's not just on the subject of Jerusalem that the ancient prophets were remarkably accurate. They foretold precisely the order of events that we have read about in newspapers and watched on television over the last 60 years. For instance, they predicted the realignment of nations that we see taking place in the world right now.
One of the most prominent is the prophecy regarding the coalition of Russia and Iran. Interestingly, in every day's headlines the past two weeks, we've seen Russia defending Iran and even urging the world to include Iran as a "peacemaker" in the efforts to diffuse the crisis in Syria. This sounds like a plot from "South Park." Here are the two nations who most avidly support Syria (Russia actively supplies advanced weaponry and holds the world at bay while Iran functions as a full-blown war ally of Bashar al-Assad) piously promoting themselves as "peacemakers" in the Syrian crisis.
And just last week Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, after a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, happily declared that "constructive cooperation" between the two nations will help bring "peace and security" to the Middle East. If you're thinking Ezekiel 38:4, you're right on.
If you're a Bible prophecy buff, or you're simply anxious for Jesus to come back and call His bride away, everything that's happening now can almost make you giddy. This is precisely what we mean when we open "The Hal Lindsey Report" each week with the words, "Yesterday's prophecies, today's headlines." Folks, it's happening right before our eyes.
But don't fall into the trap that the world and many Christians do. Don't start thinking that the only good Bible prophecy is a fulfilled Bible prophecy. God gave us these benchmarks to help us see the unfolding of His timeline. As we see events and conditions progressing TOWARD their final fulfillment, it helps us maintain a sense of urgency that time is growing short and we need to be serious about bringing those around us into a relationship with Jesus Christ.
Further, "developing" prophecy also demonstrates the accuracy and, thus, the veracity of God's Word. If the Bible correctly foretells what we actually see happening in the world today, then we can know that it is accurate on all the other promises and warnings God gives. And that includes God's guarantee of eternal life in Heaven for all who freely accept the pardon that Jesus Christ purchased for us on Calvary.
If you've never accepted the free gift of pardon that Christ's death and resurrection bought for you, do it now. Don't wait for all the end-times prophecies to be fulfilled, for then it will be too late. Accept today God's forgiveness for the debt you owe, "paid in full" by Jesus Christ on the cross.
Don't miss this week's Report here.