The Word: Darius divided the kingdom into 120 provinces, each under a governor with three administrators over them, one of whom was Daniel. Those who governed were made accountable to them so that the king might not suffer loss. Now Daniel so distinguished himself among the administrators and the governors by his exceptional qualities that the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom. At this, the administrators and the governors tried to find grounds for charges against Daniel in his conduct of government affairs, but they were unable to do so. They could find no corruption in him, because he was trustworthy and neither corrupt nor negligent. Finally these men said, “We will never find any basis for charges against this man Daniel unless it has something to do with the law of his God.” (Daniel 6:1-5)
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. (Romans 13:1)
Pointers for prayer: With the UK General Election and local elections taking place, there is much to pray about regarding this major event. As the 2015 elections take place, how will it all unfold? And who will really speak up for the nation of Israel? Let us beseech the LORD of Hosts that we would have a Government of God’s choosing; that they would be a government who will oppose ant-Semitism and support the nation of Israel (thus bringing blessings on the UK and not a curse ~ Genesis 12:3, Isaiah 60:12). Pray that we would have a government who would understand the eternal covenant of God to Israel, and His promise and giving of the land of Israel to the Jewish people as their everlasting homeland, now and always as declared by God’s Word (Genesis 17:7-9). Please pray for MP’s who would affirm the regathering of the Jewish people to their ancient homeland and the rebirth of Israel as ordained and prophesied in the Scriptures, accomplished by God’s hand, and thus have the right and Biblical mandate of Israel to exist in the land of Israel. (Ezekiel 36 and 37; Isaiah 11:11-12) Pray that the new UK government would affirm Jerusalem as the undivided eternal capital of Israel, and that the leaders would recognise the biblical warning that any seeking to move or divide it shall do so at their peril. (Joel 3:16-21)
Please continue to pray for strength and wisdom to the leaders in Israel, especially Prime Minister Netanyahu as he gets things under way with his new government. Pray that they would have God’s wisdom to deal with the threat of terrorism from Hamas, Isis, Hezbollah and Iran. (Isaiah 1:26)
Praise God that He is always true to His Word (Isaiah 46:3-4), that He will never forsake Israel. Pray for encouragement, strength and perseverance for the Israeli people in the face of constant physical and spiritual opposition. And continue to pray that ordinary Jewish and Arab people, whether living in Israel proper or what the world terms as the “Territories”, will have a desire for reconciliation and to live side by side in peace and harmony.
As Israel continues to bring much relief in Nepal, thank God for the Israel Defence Force (IDF) being one of the first from the nations to respond to the tragic events in Nepal. Do uphold this whole situation before the Lord in your intercession.
Where will you cast your vote?
Although this News Report is produced for Thursday reading, I know from the amount of comments and feedback I receive, many of you read this as soon as it drops into your email box on a Wednesday evening (if not earlier). And so for this reason, I felt I needed to start this report with a word regarding the upcoming elections (apologies for those reading this via the postal system).
I can remember during previous election campaigns seeing an amusing animated advert on television which featured two men in a pub. The first character’s attempt to bring up some tedious Political chat was deftly dismissed by the second’s response stating he “doesn’t do politics”. On each subsequent time the second man complains about various items from pub closing time to sporting achievements, he is pointedly reminded by his friend that he “doesn’t do politics” and thus implicitly isn’t entitled to an opinion on such things. The assumption behind that campaign was that everything that matters ought to be subject to political mediation. Maybe this is why I don’t take Russell Brand too seriously, as he refuses to vote, yet I find his hypocritical actions offensive of telling everyone else to vote Labour – even though he doesn’t! If Mr Brand doesn’t vote, is he really entitled to his opinion? Well… over the past few weeks, I’ve listened to various ‘party political broadcasts’ and live debates, and apart from the fact that each party appears to want to dig up as much dirt to dissuade voters from voting for the opposition, the whole affair has left me totally confused ~ as ever ~ as to who I want governing our nation. Having said that, I know who I won’t be voting for!
Needless to say, it would be wrong for us to say who we think you should vote for, nor do I have any desire to get on the Political campaign trail… however, we should be alerted to those groups who oppose Israel. One big problem also exists that any leader who stands up for Israel, once in the driving seat, will find the pressure from all and sundry to potentially force that Prime Minister to backtrack on issues relating to such a controversial subject such as Israel. Let’s face it, anyone who stands for Israel today is under a lot of pressure to be “conformed to the world” (Romans 12 v 2). Indeed, any Christians with strong Biblical opinions and beliefs are under a lot of pressure by the ungodly laws, which today are legislated by both our Parliament and the European Union. Much of what we see and hear is in direct contradiction to the Word of God and our Christian beliefs. Today we find that true Christianity is being pushed more and more in the distance and an immoral secularisation is taking its place.
As far as I’m aware, there is no Biblical imperative to vote in the elections, however the Bible does say that we must engage with our communities and love our neighbours. We need to effect change in our own communities, and while Christian political convictions can negatively rule certain parties out, they can offer no positive guidance on which party to support. The view is that the decision must be left to the judgments of individual Christian voters who, like any others, must be free to decide who to vote for. It is very difficult to argue that any one party in 2015 is worthy of Christian support. This would be true, incidentally, even if most Christians could actually agree on what the relevant ‘Christian political principles’ were, which unfortunately they don’t. And what of those who support, or indeed oppose the nation of Israel?
The Jewish State of Israel used to be (and some think it still is) a close ally of Great Britain… though you wouldn’t believe it most of the time. Israel is the only full democracy in the Middle East, and as we well know, Israel is under constant fire from Iranian and Syrian-backed terrorist groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah. The Jewish nation’s very existence is threatened by the rise of a nuclear-armed Iran, which has malevolently warned of another Holocaust, and the new threat from Isis. So can we really support any political party who opposes Israel? Here is a quick look at what the various parties’ state regarding the Israel / Palestinian issue.
The Conservative Party support a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, robustly defending the right of Israel to protect its security, while continuing to condemn what it calls ‘illegal settlement building,’ which they state “undermines the prospects for peace.”
The Labour Party Manifesto states, “Peace and security in the Middle East are one of Labour’s most important foreign policy objectives. We remain committed to a comprehensive two-state solution – a secure Israel alongside a viable and independent state of Palestine. There can be no military solution to this conflict and all sides must avoid taking action that would make peace harder to achieve. Labour will continue to press for an immediate return to meaningful negotiations leading to a diplomatic resolution.” Miliband would be the first Jewish prime minister since Disraeli, and yet he is losing Jewish voters who are overwhelmingly backing the Tories. Read why here.
The Liberal Democrat Manifesto states that they will “Remain committed to a negotiated peace settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which includes a two-state solution. We condemn disproportionate force used by all sides. We condemn Hamas’ rocket attacks and other targeting of Israeli civilians. We condemn Israel’s continued illegal policy of settlement expansion, which undermines the possibility of a two-state solution. We support recognition of the independent State of Palestine as and when it will help the prospect of a two-state solution.”
The Green Party states: “We seek a just, sustainable and peaceful solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, based on mutual recognition of the rights to independent statehood for Palestinians and Israelis. We condemn human rights violations by both parties and the oppression and disproportionate use of aggression by the Israeli government against the people of Gaza. We seek to suspend the EU–Israel Association Agreement.”
One of our recipients wrote to their potential Green Party MP asking questions regarding their stance and the reply included the following: “Whilst I support the right of Israeli citizens to live in peace without fear of attack I also support the right of Palestinians to expect the same and I am a member of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign. Unfortunately Israel has not been answerable or held to account by the same moral code or standards applied to other democratic countries and indeed refuses to answer to the UN on a variety of issues surrounding human rights and transgressions into Palestinian territories… The fact that Palestinians have no right of return and are still subjected to having their properties confiscated or their children being arrested in the middle of the night just to name a few of the issues that are currently still occurring would suggest that they are indeed being treated as second class citizens and until this situation changes I will continue to support boycott and divestment from Israel.”
UKIP state: “In the Middle East, UKIP wants to see nations at peace, but acknowledges that sectarianism, fuelled by historical Western involvement, has rendered this all but impossible within a generation. We want to see a peaceful, two-state solution in Israel and the Palestinian territories.” One thing I did like about the UK Independence Party manifesto is that it has said that it would protect the religious freedom of Christians in the workplace by extending the concept of “reasonable accommodation”. UKIP joins the Democratic Unionist Party, the Christian Party and the Christian People’s Alliance in supporting a change in the law to protect freedom of conscience.
Plaid Cymru’s Manifesto on Israel is more of the same: “Plaid Cymru has consistently called for an ending of the blockade on Gaza and for a two state solution for Israel and Palestine.”
There is no doubt that our responsibility to government is to obey the laws and be good citizens (Romans 13:1-2). Paul tells us in Romans 13:1-8 that it is the government’s responsibility to rule in authority over us -hopefully for our good. Where we have a voice and can elect our leaders, we should exercise that right by voting for those whose views most closely parallel our own, after all, as I’ve mentioned already, one cannot complain about our governments if one does not cast his/her vote. However, as I have shown above, all of the main parties desire a ‘two-state solution’ of having an Islamic Arab State of Palestine within the land of Israel. And one thing I find really troublesome is that when I have questioned various MP’s over this, they appeared vague as to the history of the area called ‘Palestine’ including the territories of present day Israel and Jordan.
From 1517 to 1917 most of this area remained under the rule of the Ottoman Empire. However, in 1917 Great Britain issued the Balfour Declaration for “the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people”. In 1922 Britain allocated nearly 80% of Palestine to the creation of Transjordan. Thus, Jordan covers the majority of the land of Palestine under British Mandate. Jordan also includes the majority of the Arabs who lived there. In other words, Jordan is the Arab portion of Palestine.
It was only after the Jews re-inhabited their historic homeland of Judea and Samaria, that the myth of an ‘Arab Palestinian nation’ was created and marketed worldwide. There is, nor never has been, any language known as Palestinian, or any Palestinian culture distinct from that of all the Arabs in the area. There has never been a land known as Palestine governed by Palestinians. “Palestinians” are Arabs indistinguishable from Arabs throughout the Middle East. Much of the Arab population in this area actually migrated into Israel and Judea and Samaria from the surrounding Arab countries in the past 100 years. The rebirth of Israel was accompanied by economic prosperity for the region. Arabs migrated to this area to find employment and enjoy the higher standard of living. Jews by far were the majority in Jerusalem over the small Arab minority. Until the Oslo agreement, the major source of income for Arab residents was employment in the Israeli sector. To this day, many Arabs try to migrate into Israel with various deceptions to become a citizen of Israel.
Even the creator of the modern ‘Palestinians’ in 1964 – PLO Chairman Arafat himself – was not a “Palestinian”. He was born in Egypt. The famous “Palestinian covenant” states that Palestinians are “an integral part of the Arab nation” — a nation which is blessed with a sparsely populated land mass 660 times the size of tiny Israel (Judea, Samaria and Gaza included). And all attempts to claim Arab sovereignty over Israel today, should be seen with their real intention: The destruction of Israel as a Jewish state and the only bulwark of the Judeo-Christian Western civilization in the Middle East. Yet most MP’s only appear to be concerned with the issue of creating another ‘two-state solution’ which in fact will not be any solution at all.
But whoever you vote for, or indeed have already voted for (if you’re reading this after Thursdays elections), it is our prayer that God-fearing men and women may be returned to Parliament as MP’s in this election. Let us also pray that we would have a Government of God’s choosing; that they would be a government who will oppose ant-Semitism and support the nation of Israel. We know that in the final analysis it is God that puts men and women in these places of power, but we can be used by God to put people into Parliament that have high moral standards, so that the present tide of immorality sweeping our country may be stemmed and hopefully reversed, so that the Biblical mandate of standing with the Nation of Israel will be seen as one of blessing our nation and not bringing upon us the curse (Genesis 12:3).
Israel continues to save lives in Nepal
Who is really helping Nepal with the deployment of people? The UK has sent $5 million in financial help and has deployed 68 people. The vast USA has doubled that, sending $10 million yet have only sent 54 people. Israel however – a country the size of Wales – was first on the scene in Nepal and has sent 260 people – the most of all nations! This large medical assistance to Nepal also included their search and rescue team, following the dreadful 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck the area. Israeli President Reuven Rivlin stated how proud he is of the Israeli team: “The delegation of ‘messenger angels’ represents the universal values in the spirit of the Israeli people and Israel”.
The Israeli delegation arrived in Nepal to aid in search and rescue operations, and to set up an advanced field hospital – this IDF Field hospital was featured in the ITN news story that covered the 15-year-old Nepalese boy who’s in recovery after miraculously surviving for 5 days in the rubble.
Click here to view two short film clips showing this:
The Israeli delegation consists of 260 doctors, nurses and paramedics, members of search and rescue team; and 95 tons of humanitarian and medical supplies. So far at the time of writing this report, the IDF medical team has treat over 450 patients in its trauma, paediatrics, medical, surgical, orthopaedic and intensive care units. The doctors and nurses have performed 33 lifesaving surgeries and aided in five births, including three caesarean sections. This Israeli humanitarian assistance and spirit should be known to the world. Well done Israel once again for your amazing work.
(Middle East News Correspondent)
Sources: Unless stated, personal sources throughout Israel, Israeli Embassy London, The Jerusalem Post, i24news.tv/en/ & Israel National Radio