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Some Bless, Most Curse—Why the Widely Divergent Stance toward Israel?

The Christian Worldview / David Wheaton
The Truth Network Radio
November 11, 2023 2:00 am

Some Bless, Most Curse—Why the Widely Divergent Stance toward Israel?

The Christian Worldview / David Wheaton

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November 11, 2023 2:00 am

GUESTS: CHRIS KATULKA, Radio Host, Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry

A “moral equivalency” is argumentation that attempts to make two opposing sides equal, when in reality one side is far more immoral than the other.

Example: Israel and Hamas. The Islamist group Hamas, based in the Palestinian territory of Gaza, barbarically slaughters 1400 civilians in the October 7 raid on Israel and immediately those who side with Palestinians make the moral equivalency that Israel is no better with their racist, oppressive, colonialist, genocidal, apartheid state.

A better moral equivalency to Hamas murdering non-combatants, including children, would be the American zealots who advocate for the “right” to kill pre-born children at any time and for any reason during pregnancy. In fact, the latter group has been much more effective from a death toll standpoint than the former. And the people of Ohio just voted for abortion to be a “right” in their state constitution.

In last week’s program, Chris Katulka of Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry clarified the disinformation (i.e. lies) that so many believe and espouse about Israel and the Jews, such as, they are occupying Palestinian land. Chris detailed the ancient history of Israel with God establishing for them a far larger area of land than their currently inhabit and how in 1948 they were unexpectedly granted a portion of their historic homeland to settle.

This week in part two of the interview, Chris will explain what is behind the widespread anti-semitism in the world, how Christians should obey God’s command to bless the descendants of Abraham and Sarah (the Jews) despite their current God- and Christ-rejection, and what these events mean for Biblical prophecy.
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Some bless, most curse. Why the widely divergent stance toward Israel? That is a topic we'll discuss today right here on the Christian Worldview Radio Program, where the mission is to sharpen the Biblical worldview of Christians and to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ.

I'm David Wheaton. The Christian Worldview is a listener-supported radio ministry. You can connect with us by visiting our website, thechristianworldview.org, calling toll-free 1-888-646-2233, or by writing to Box 401, Excelsior, Minnesota 55331. A moral equivalency is argumentation that attempts to make two opposing sides equal, when in reality, one side is far more immoral than the other. Example, Israel and Hamas. The Islamic group Hamas, based in the Palestinian territory of Gaza, barbarically slaughters 1400 civilians in Israel on October 7th, and immediately, those who side with the Palestinians make the moral equivalency that Israel is no better with their racist, oppressive, colonialist, genocidal, apartheid state, as they would put it. A better moral equivalency to Hamas murdering non-combatants, including children, would be the American zealots who advocate for the so-called right to kill preborn children at any time and for any reason during pregnancy.

In fact, the latter group, the abortion zealots, has been much more effective from a death toll standpoint than the former, Hamas, and the people of Ohio just voted for abortion to be a quote right in their state constitution. In last week's program, Chris Katolka of Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry clarified the disinformation, another word for that is lies, that so many believe and espouse about Israel and the Jews, such as that they are occupying Palestinian land. Chris detailed the ancient history of Israel, with God establishing for them a far larger area of land than they currently inhabit, and how in 1948 they were unexpectedly granted a portion of that historic homeland for them to resettle. So this week in part two of the interview, Chris will explain what is behind the widespread anti-Semitism in the world, and how Christians should obey God's command to bless the descendants of Abraham and Sarah, the Jews, despite their current God and Christ rejection, and what all these events going on mean for biblical prophecy. Now before we get to the interview with Chris Katolka, I would just like to read a few paragraphs of a recent column by Mike Gendron, who was recently on the Christian worldview radio program.

He heads proclaiming the Gospel ministry. Mike Gendron writes, historically, this prolonged struggle in the Middle East has been between the Jewish descendants of Abraham through Isaac and the Arab descendants of Abraham through Ishmael. See that back in Genesis 17. Islam, the religion, was formed out of Arab paganism and its roots can be traced back to Ishmael and Esau. The religion, founded by Muhammad in the late 6th century, is a sociopolitical religious system with a mission to convert the world into an Islamic society governed by laws of Allah. Not too long after the religion became established, the Muslims conquered the land of Israel in 637 AD. And so here is where the conflict over the land in Israel began. He goes on to say, who has the right to the land of Israel?

Since 1948, the growing and never-ending conflict has been centered on who has the right to the land of Israel. The Jewish people believe they have a long-standing and exclusive right, yet Muslims believe that any land conquered in the name of Allah must remain in the possession of Islam. The Jews know that God gave them the land as their everlasting possession, although most Jews today do not believe in the God revealed in the Bible.

Maybe a portion of the God revealed in the Old Testament, but certainly not the God of the New Testament, which is the same God. The title deed for the land is the inspired word of God. The Lord made a covenant with Abraham, saying, To your descendants I have given this land, from the river of Egypt as far as the great river, the river Euphrates. He declared, I will give to you and to your descendants after you the land where you live as a stranger, all the land of Canaan as an everlasting possession, and I will be their God. There appears to be no human solution to this ongoing conflict over their rights to the land.

This is an irreconcilable difference, if I may add. However, there is a divine solution, but it will not be resolved until the King of Kings returns to set up his earthly kingdom from the throne of David in Jerusalem. So if you're hoping that there is going to be peace and understanding between the Jews and the Arabs as to whose land is it, and that's how this is going to be settled, that is not going to happen ever until Christ returns. So Mike Gendron goes on to say, Who are the Palestinians? In the second century, he writes, Roman Emperor Hadrian decided to punish the Jews by changing the name of Judea, that we see in the Bible, to Palestine. Yet this has nothing to do with modern-day Palestinians, who did not even exist at that time. After the conquest of the land by the British Empire in 1917, around the time of World War I, many Arabs from neighboring countries made their way into the land of Israel as migrant workers. Years later, after Israel declared its independence in 1948, Arab armies invaded the land with the goal of eliminating every Jew. Chris Kotelka talked about that last week. In the Six-Day War of 1967, Arab nations tried again to destroy Israel, but Israel miraculously prevailed and took the Golan Heights, Judea, Samaria, the Sinai Peninsula, and the Gaza Strip. Again, Chris talked about that last week.

You can go and hear that program where he explains that. All this to say, Mike Gendron writes, that there has never been a Palestinian state, a Palestinian language, or a Palestinian culture. Furthermore, no Arab state has ever had Jerusalem as a capital.

The Quran never even mentions Jerusalem, yet the Bible cites Jerusalem over 800 times. Palestinians as a people group were never even mentioned until 75 years ago. Regrettably, these historical facts have been replaced with Palestinian propaganda, which has been dispensed throughout Western media and academia alike. That last paragraph, how often do you hear that truthfulness spoken in the media at all today?

That has been completely lost, except in more conservative Christian outlets. Just two more paragraphs, he goes on to write about Hamas and the Gaza Strip. Hamas was originally a branch of the Muslim Brotherhood and is called for the destruction of Israel.

That genocidal intent and mission is in their charter. Israel, unbelievably, gave control of the Gaza Strip to the Palestinians in 2005. There are two important propositions to consider as the ongoing conflict between Jews and Muslims continue.

And here it is. If Islam puts down her weapons, there will be no more Islamic terror attacks. If Israel puts down her weapons, there will be no more Israel. And then Mike Jenner concludes with biblical prophecy about Israel.

That's from Zechariah 13, verses 8 and 9. And Mike goes on to say, And for the last several weeks on the program with everything going on in Israel, we've been talking a lot about Bible prophecy, and so we thought it would be good to find a good resource that would keep us focused on what God has planned for the future. And you probably remember one of our guests on the program who we really like, Steve Miller. He's the author of Foreshadows, 12 Mega-Clues that Jesus' Return is Nearer Than Ever. We offered that book—I think he was on the program about a year ago or so.

He now has a devotional out titled One Day Nearer, Daily Devotions in Anticipation of Jesus' Glorious Return. We're going to be offering this book today for a donation of any amount, and I'm going to read after the interview with Chris Katulka just one page of it, which gives sort of a bullet point on a panorama of biblical prophecy. So stay tuned for that coming up after the interview with Chris. So let's get back to the second part of the interview with Chris Katulka of Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry.

Chris, thanks again for coming on the program. A man named David—and it's a difficult last name—Patri Karakos, he's a reporter that attended an Israeli Defense Force IDF briefing about the Hamas attack. And they weren't allowed to take video, they were just allowed to take notes, but the IDF showed video of what took place on that attack on October 7th.

I'm just going to read a couple paragraphs to you to give listeners an idea of just how barbaric this attack was. He says, the footage starts, a truck with Hamas terrorists on board—and again, he's just jotting down what he's seeing in this briefing by the IDF. The Hamas terrorists on board whoop and cheer, they fan out into the street, shooting at cars, they drag blood-soaked corpses out of vehicles onto the street, a female body is thrown onto the road, alihu akbar, alihu akbar, Allah is great, is the repeated cry. Next paragraph, Hamas enters the kibbutz.

A car pulls up and the driver looks left to speak to the checkpoint. A Hamas terrorist emerges from the right and shoots him, blood spatters the inside. GoPro footage from a Hamas fighter, next video they show, his gun sticks out in front of him like a video game. He runs through a kibbutz.

He sees a dog running eagerly toward him. He lowers a rifle and shoots the dog, two to three shots, stone dead. A man in his underpants and his two children, also in underpants, run screaming. Hamas enter, they throw a grenade and kill the father. They take the two kids, covered with their father's blood, into a room. Daddy's dead, screams one.

It's not a prank, he's really dead. I wish I was dead, I wish I was dead, screams the child. Just a couple more paragraphs, and I know this is hard to hear, but I think it's important to understand the world view behind this attack by Hamas on these Jewish civilians. It goes on to say, the footage moves, a man in his football shirt lies on the ground, covered in blood.

He moans in pain. A Hamas terrorist picks up a hoe and starts hitting him over and over on the head, screaming, Alihu Akbar. The footage moves to a rave, that party that was going on. Party goers run screaming. Men and women are dragged screaming out of cars. Bloodied corpses are thrown into the dirt and surrounded by Hamas, cheering and whooping.

Audio is put up on the screen. A Hamas terrorist calls his father, Father, I killed 10 Jews. Check your WhatsApp, I sent you the photos. Father, I killed 10 Jews. I killed 10 Jews with my bare hands.

Check your WhatsApp. Father, be proud of me. Honestly, it makes my skin crawl to even read it. And then the report concludes this way.

What I saw today has nothing to do with resistance. It was about wanting to kill Jews. And that they did. They killed over 1400 civilians in this barbaric attack. 1400. Do you know how hard it is to kill that many people? This wasn't just like a mass shooting we see in America where 15 or 20 people die, which is a huge tragedy. This is 1400 people.

This is a slaughter that went on and on and on. Now, in light of this, and this information has been out, this is nothing new that I just read. People have heard about this. There are many pro-Palestinian anti-Israel protests. Even Jewish people in New York City are already calling for a ceasefire. They're getting together at events, protests and so forth. You mentioned the college campuses.

It's all over the country. Pro-Palestinian marches on campuses. Members of Congress, Rashida Tlaib, Ilhan Omar and so forth, others, are totally in favor of the Palestinians in this cause. Even after that barbaric attack I just read about, the UN Secretary General just recently just drew this moral equivalency that these attacks, he said, weren't done in a vacuum. In other words, there was reason. They're frustrated for settlements and all these other things. There's reason for these attacks. Chris, how do you explain that there's so much open support?

This is the difference, I think, this time that I remember in the last 20, 30 years. So much open support for a barbaric... And speaking of genocide, that's what the motivation is of Hamas. They don't just want to gain some land back, as you just discussed. They don't want even the presence of the Jews or Israel in the land at all. So they're a genocidally motivated organization like Hamas. How do you explain there's so much open support for this organization and the dismantlement and the removal of Israel from the land?

You did a great job building that entire question because you highlighted the barbarism of what Hamas did. And then the shock that there are Americans from all backgrounds who, whether they're educated or not, whether they're in universities, it doesn't matter what their color is, they are targeting Jewish people on college campuses. Like you said, in our very own halls of Congress, even in the UN, there is an anti-Semitism. It's the hatred of the Jewish people. David, we've seen anti-Semitism for a long time at Friends of Israel. It's something we highlight all the time.

We've never seen it like this before. This is reminiscent of 1933 all over again. And it's something that you're hearing many Jewish people concerned for their very own lives. The only way that I can explain the virulent anti-Semitism that we're seeing happen right now is that it's spiritual. We always remind our audiences, our listeners at the Friends of Israel today, whether we're doing a conference or speaking in a church, this is not the first time that the Jewish people have been targeted.

You can look at them going all the way back to Egypt or Assyria in the Bible or the Babylonians or the Persians or the Greeks or the Romans or the Spanish Inquisition or the Crusader period or the Russian pogroms or the Holocaust. They were targeted as being Jewish people. They were blamed for something, even though they had done nothing. They were blamed.

They become the problem. They're the colonialists. They're the ones who control the media.

They're the ones with all the money. If you notice, these are the kind of things that begin to boil to the top. One of the big questions right now, David, among the scholars and whatnot, is the question of whether or not anti-Zionism is anti-Semitism. And what that means is people will often get up and say, oh, I like Jewish people. I'm not anti-Semitic, but I hate the Jewish state, the state of Israel.

I hate it. I will do anything I possibly can to boycott Israel, divest from Israel, sanction Israel. I hate Israel, but I like Jewish people.

And so a lot of times they try to make this distinguishing picture. And people even try to do that today when they look at what's going on between Israel and Hamas. And they go, oh, no, no, we like Jewish people. We don't like Israel. And what you end up always seeing over and over again is when you see a rally against Israel, what always bubbles to the top is anti-Semitism. You'll always see a target of the Jewish people. All of a sudden they'll target a Jewish business or they'll target a Jewish individual.

Why is this here? Why has it always been around? I believe it's a spiritual issue. I believe it's grounded in the fact that God is not through with Israel and the Jewish people.

They are connected to his plan of redemption. You would think in 2023 we would have learned the lessons of the Holocaust that go back only 80 years. But yet here we are once again, the enlightened people and universities are anti-Semitic and anti-Israel. The Muslim world is on fire when it comes to Israel right now. Europe has opinions, the U.N., all of these things.

Why? Why is it like this with Israel and the Jewish people? We're not talking about the fact that they're taking over the entire Middle East. The country of Israel is the size of New Jersey. It's nothing. It's one Jewish state in the entire world.

Why? Go to Psalm 83. Read about the fact that there has always been an anti-Semitism and I think it's spiritual because Satan hates what God loves. God loves his people, his chosen people, Israel and the Jewish people.

He also loves the church. There's Christian persecution that's going on around the world. There's also anti-Semitism that's on the rise. Anti-Semitism is up 1,100% since the Israel-Hamas war started.

And so this is definitely, I believe, it's not just a political issue or a racial issue. It's a spiritual issue that goes back thousands of years and it's something that we need to be praying for. That's why David calls for us to pray for the peace of Jerusalem.

That was very well said and I completely agree with you. This is a spiritual darkness, an irrational Satan-inspired hatred of the Jewish people. For all the reasons you just mentioned, God chose the nation of Israel to give the Ten Commandments and the laws and all the things that came through the Jewish people in the Old Testament. And then of course the Messiah, Jesus Christ, to bring Christ through the line of the Jews as well.

And as you mentioned, there's the future plans for them in the future, which we're going to get to in just a minute here. That's another thing why there's continued to be this hatred toward the Jewish people. Chris Kotelka is our guest today from Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry. foi.org is the way you can connect with this ministry. We're also offering a devotional by Steve Miller, One Day Nearer, daily devotions in anticipation of Jesus' glorious return to keep our minds and our hearts focused on that most important hope of the believer. You can get it for a donation of any amount to the Christian worldview. It's a soft cover, 385 pages.

It retails for $19.99. Just get in contact with us the usual ways. Our website, toll-free number and address will be given during this short break for some ministry announcements. You are listening to the Christian worldview radio program. I'm David Wheaton. When Jesus is laying out the Holy Spirit's job description in John 16, and he says it's to your advantage that I go, think about that for just a second. Jesus, the Christ, tells his disciples, it's actually advantageous that I go. They're thinking, what? We don't want you to go.

Who could be better for us? What does he then explain? That was Pastor Costi Hinn, who was raised in and then saved from the distortions of the Holy Spirit that are so prevalent today. Costi's new book, Knowing the Spirit, Who He Is, What He Does, and How He Can Transform Your Christian Life, graciously clarifies truth from error and is available for a donation of any amount to the Christian worldview. To order this 261-page softcover book that retails for $19.99, go to thechristianworldview.org or call toll-free 1-888-646-2233 or write to Box 401, Excelsior, Minnesota 55331. Scripture commands that children are to be brought up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. Offering biblically sound resources for children is one of our top ministry priorities. At our store at thechristianworldview.org, you will find carefully selected children's Bibles and books along with video and audio resources. Check out the Bible infographics for kids books, Little Pilgrim's Progress, and the popular Adam Raccoon set. Theo is a 15-episode video series addressing key doctrines of the faith that is a must-see for children and adults. Satan and the world are bent on capturing the heart and mind of your child.

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Order resources for adults and children and support the ministry. Our topic today is Some Bless, Most Curse, Why the Widely Divergent Stance Toward Israel. Chris Katalka, radio host with Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry, is our guest. Chris, in an online publication called American Purpose, a writer named Robert Satloff, I don't know who he is, but he said this, The enormity, the audacity, and the depravity of what Hamas did, butchering more than 1,300 civilians in a way not experienced by the Jews since the darkest days of the Holocaust, changed the rules of the game.

If you could call it a game. To Israelis this may have been a surprise, but it was not like Anwar Sadat's surprise, war as politics. But it was the rudest of awakenings, opening eyes to the almost incomprehensible realization that while they were engaged in what they thought was an almost gentlemanly conflict, with the Palestinians down there in Gaza and so forth, defined by clear rules and boundaries, the enemy was readying itself for a diabolical, there's the Satan-inspired part of it, bloodthirsty massacre. Okay, let's bring this up to the present day here with what's going on there now. You have the Israel Defense Forces having gone into Gaza and controlling much of the area now. What are you hearing is the objective this time around? The rules of the so-called game have changed.

Before it was like, they call it what, mowing the lawn or mowing the grass, or they kind of beat them back a little bit and back down their capability for a while, then they build themselves back up and attack again. This time seems different. Is the plan, from what you're hearing, Chris, is to take back the land of Gaza?

Is it, and what were the ramifications of that would be? Tell us what you know about what the objective is for Gaza and Hamas now. Israel woke up for sure on October 7, when Hamas committed that atrocity, that butchery.

But I also say something. Israel has been calling out Hamas for a long time, and the world has said, be nice to them. You know, it's not like this just happened out of the blue. Most of the time, the media only clues into what's going on in Israel, when finally Hamas launches enough rockets into Israel at one time that Israel has to respond and do an operation, which has happened several times over the past 15, 16 years, at least since 2007 or 2006.

So, you know, it's not as though this just happened out of the blue. And when he calls it a gentlemanly relationship, it's not these people were building terrorist tunnels underneath Gaza to actually sneak into Israel to commit acts of terror. It's just that the world was blind to the genocidal nature of Hamas, even though, David, even though their Hamas charter calls for the elimination of the state of Israel and for the eradication of the Jewish people, they're saying the quiet parts out loud. And so am I surprised by October 7 what they did?

I am surprised by the butchery. Friends of Israel, we have a magazine called Israel My Glory. It's been in publication since 1942. I actually went back to 2006 when Hamas took control. And you know what? We called them in 2006 as a Christian organization in America. We called Hamas a genocidal organization. Why? Because they told us. So the fact that people are waking up now, oh, I didn't realize how bad it was.

Hello. They've been launching rockets all the time. I have an app on my phone, David, that lets me know when a rocket is launched from Gaza into into Israel.

And it buzzes all the time. Israel has built more than 60 bomb shelters in Israel prior to the October 7 massacre because it's just such a present reality for the Israelis. So, yes, the Israelis did wake up.

I think they were just surprised as we were. But they've also lived with this for so long. I think it's almost like, hey, world, we've been telling you. But every time we go in to finally want to take care of Hamas, you tell us to stop. And so the world has been governing how Israel should approach Hamas. I don't know if Israel is going to take Gaza control of Gaza. I don't know how they're going to do that. Quite honestly, you know, that's the big question. I think everyone's waiting to find out once they root out Hamas once and for all.

Well, then what? You do have the Palestinian authority in the West Bank. I think it would be very dangerous for them to take control of Gaza again.

I think it would be definitely provide more safety, but I think it would create a lot of chaos in the Middle East. I don't know if you saw recently, but the Turkish President Erdogan said to more than one hundred thousand of the of his Turkish people who are all in favor of the Palestinians that he might even send troops, Turkish troops down to Gaza to defend the Palestinians. You don't want that kind of scenario in Israel. So, again, I don't know how it will play out. I think that's what a lot of people are waiting to see. OK, Hamas is gone.

Now what? Is there an installment of the more, quote unquote, moderate arms of the Palestinian people like the Fatah party in the West Bank coming in? I quite honestly, David, I don't know. But here's the other reality. Eighty one to eighty six percent, something like that of Palestinians in Gaza approved of what Hamas did on October seven. Right.

So just let that sink in for a moment as well. It's not just the leadership of Hamas. It's boiled down into education of children, how children are educated in Gaza and in the West Bank. They're educated to hate Israel and the Jewish people.

They're educated to do that. So it's really it's going to take more than just removing Hamas. I don't know how they'll do it. I'm interested to see if the if Israel takes over Gaza or if they put a more moderate leader, help to encourage a more moderate leader to take control. It doesn't take much imagination here to see how this spirals and escalates into a regional conflict.

What you just mentioned about Turkey. So many countries are taking the side of the Palestinians. Again, Israel is just a little country, border disputes. Gaza is a little tiny strip. It's amazing how world stability revolves around what takes place in Israel, which shows you there's something supernatural that is about that place.

And we know why. Chris Kotelka again from Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry joins us today here on The Christian World. You're talking about some truthful history of the nation of Israel and what is going on.

Very different than you'll hear in the mainstream media. Now, one of the things in the background here, Chris, has been what's called the Abraham Accords. That was a deal going on between Israel and Saudi Arabia. What do you know about the Abraham Accords and whether that factored into the attack by Hamas and what is going on now today in Israel? There are people that like to link the two that, you know, Saudi Arabia has definitely leaned into Israel, not just recently, but they've been partnering with Israel for security reasons for several years now, especially since Obama's JCPOA. If you remember, that was the Iran deal that he was making that really Obama's Iran deal really forced many of the Arab countries, Middle Eastern countries and even those Gulf states into the arms of the Israelis, because Iran became a threat not only to Israel, but it was a threat to many countries like Saudi Arabia. And so, yes, Saudi Arabia has had at least security relations with Israel for quite some time. And you can see there's a warming that's taking place between these two countries. And so, yet there is definitely a picture that as there was a warming going on in the relationship that Hamas steps in and does this heinous attack. The Abraham Accords have become an incredibly important strategic relationship, though, for Israel and these other Arab countries like the UAE, like Bahrain and Sudan and other countries as well, because right now, as Hamas commits those acts of atrocity, it doesn't mean that the Abraham Accords have severed. Now, that doesn't mean that those countries won't criticize Israel.

I mean it. I think they're not all like the United States now, but it does create a relationship that's a little bit it's a lot deeper than it was in the past. And so there isn't just simply like, oh, we hate Israel now. No, they have diplomatic relationships. They have to work together.

They share information. And so the Abraham Accords have become a very strategic relationship that I hope continues on. I hope that there's a tension that continues to be given to these relationships that Israel's made in the Middle East. It's definitely strengthened the Middle East and changed the Middle East, the face of the Middle East. But it feels like we're kind of going backwards again with what happened on October 7th and with Hamas and Iran and Lebanon and Syria.

But really, those relationships have been very strategic. And just one quick follow up on the Abraham Accords. What do they specifically do?

And is there something in there I heard about the actual Temple Mount control of that? What do these Abraham Accords do? It builds a relationship that wasn't there in the past. So let's just use the United Arab Emirates, for instance, which is a very strategic generator of wealth at a very strategic city and country in the Middle East. Before these two countries, Israel and the UAE, were completely separated. Now they share information.

They have security information they share. They have diplomatic relationships they share. There's an ambassador to the UAE from Israel and there's a UAE ambassador in Israel now. Again, these relationships help to strengthen Israel's position in the Middle East. That becomes very important because now it doesn't necessarily feel like the entire Middle East is coming against Israel. You know, you have to remember is that during the 1948 Independence War and the Six Day War, the 67 War, you know, you might have a country like Jordan that attacked Israel in the 48 War or 67 War. But behind them were countries like Saudi Arabia who were strengthening them. You had Egypt that was moving in in order to attack Israel. Now, all of a sudden, these countries like Jordan, like Egypt, they criticize Israel all day long, but they have strategic relationships with them. So you don't see an attack with Jordan. You don't see an attack from Egypt.

That's huge. Of course, the northern border of Lebanon is dominated by Hezbollah, which is an Iran proxy. So that's a real threat. But then when you think about Saudi Arabia, they're not there funding or they shouldn't be funding a country to come and attack Israel like they maybe would have in the past and providing aid for those things that we saw earlier. Same thing with UAE. Qatar is actually a country that has somewhat of a relationship with Israel. But then also at the same time, they are funding Hamas and they actually house the Hamas leaders. So there's going to have to probably be some questions there. But again, from the Six Day War or the Independence War or even the Yom Kippur War of 1973, the conversations with most of the Arab world are much different now between Israel and many of these countries because they actually do talk to one another. Again, like I said, you'll see criticism, but there are communications that are going back and forth. You wonder what the ramifications of that will be when we get into the end time scenarios, these relationships that Israel has built with former sworn enemies of the state of Israel and how they might turn out to be deceptive alliances when all is said and done in the future.

Chris Kotelka with us today. He is the radio host of Friends of Israel Today, the radio program of Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry. You can find out more about them and get connected with their ministry at FOI.org. Chris, we've been talking a lot about the support of Israel, but you see throughout the Old Testament, time and again, you saw the nation of Israel, the Jews, they would rebel and go their own way against God. God would allow judgment to come upon them from other godless nations, Babylon, other places, go off into exile, and so forth. We see this as a cycle over and over again, the kings rebelled against God. And in Ezekiel chapter 7, the prophet Ezekiel writes this in the time before Israel was going to be exiled off to Babylon, Ezekiel writes, And the end is coming on the four corners of the land. Now the end is upon you, and I will send my anger against you. I will judge you according to your ways and bring all your abominations upon you. For my eye will have no pity on you, nor will I spare you, but I will bring your ways upon you, and your abominations will be among you.

Then you will know that I am the Lord. That's from Ezekiel chapter 7, and that's not an unusual response of God toward his own chosen people. When they have been given so much, given that status of privilege and priority with God, and yet turned and went their own way, as our hearts often do, the reality today is that the majority of the Jewish people and the nation of Israel is Christ-rejecting. I know there are some Jewish believers, but that's a really small minority. And the country, like America, is in really full-throated rebellion against God, the values they support, and they have all the same kinds of moral issues, sin that we have in our own country. How do we Christians support God's chosen people? I will bless those who bless you.

So how do we do that, yet without supporting their present rebellion against God? Chris Kotelka from Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry will answer that question after this short pause to tell you about some ministry resources. Also, just a reminder that we have a new devotional called One Day Nearer. The subtitle is Daily Devotions in Anticipation of Jesus' Glorious Return by author Steve Miller, one of our past guests here on the program who wrote Foreshadows. You can get this devotional for a donation of any amount to the Christian Real View. It's 385 pages, soft cover, and retails for $19.99.

Just get in contact with us to order it the usual ways, which will be given during this short timeout. You are listening to the Christian Real View radio program. I'm David Wheaton. God's truth is enduringly true throughout all the generations. It transcends culture. The church is always going to be an embattled people. If it's swimming with the tide, it's not being the Church of Jesus Christ.

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Order at thechristianrealview.org or call toll-free 1-888-646-2233 or write to Box 401, Excelsior, Minnesota 55331. When Jesus is laying out the Holy Spirit's job description in John 16, and he says it's to your advantage that I go, think about that for just a second. Jesus, the Christ, tells his disciples, it's actually advantageous that I go. And they're thinking, what? We don't want you to go.

Who could be better for us? What does he then explain? That was Pastor Costi Hinn, who was raised in and then saved from the distortions of the Holy Spirit that are so prevalent today. Costi's new book, Knowing the Spirit, Who He Is, What He Does, and How He Can Transform Your Christian Life, graciously clarifies truth from error and is available for a donation of any amount to the Christian Real View. To order this 261-page softcover book that retails for $19.99, go to thechristianrealview.org or call toll-free 1-888-646-2233 or write to Box 401, Excelsior, Minnesota 55331. Welcome back to the Christian Real View.

I'm David Wheaton. Be sure to visit our website, thechristianrealview.org, where you can subscribe to our free weekly email and annual print letter, order resources for adults and children, and support the ministry. Our topic today is Some Bless, Most Curse—Why the Widely Divergent Stance Toward Israel. Chris Kotelka is our guest. He's a radio host for Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry. And I asked him at the end of the last segment, how do Christians find the balance of blessing God's chosen people, the Jews, and yet not ignore the fact that they are currently in a state of God-in-Christ rejection?

Fantastic question. I'm going to let the Bible answer that, because you can't escape God's covenant relationship with his people. It's connected to that Hebrew word chesed, and chesed is—it's loving-kindness, it often appears in the Scriptures, but it's more like a covenantal relationship.

Chesed, loving-kindness, isn't emotional love. It's a covenantal love. And so oftentimes in the Old Testament, Israel is like a wife and God is like a husband, and you see that even played out in the prophet Hosea. The whole story is a picture of Israel's relationship with God, and yet God remains covenantally faithful to Israel despite Israel's disobedience, and Paul picks up on this and says in Romans 11, verse 28, as regards of the gospel, they are enemies for your sake.

And he's talking about his own people. So as regards to the gospel, as you're saying, they are enemies for your sake. But as regards for election, they are beloved for the sake of their forefathers, for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. And so you cannot untie Genesis 12 from Israel, I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you, or even the promise of the land. God promised a land, God promised descendants, and God promised a blessing to Abraham and to his descendants. And that ultimately, the reason they're chosen is because through Abraham, all the families of the earth would be blessed, it said. But the picture there is that God is never through with his people, despite how disobedient. I mean, I'm saying this, and I've heard it said a bunch of times since the Hamas war, I've heard Jewish people call themselves.

We're a stiff-necked people. It's written in the Bible. So I'm only quoting them.

I'm not saying it. It's written in the Bible. There is an acknowledgment of a stubbornness that God knows about. And so when you're supporting Israel, I like to think it's the way that you're standing up against the hatred of the Jewish people as not only a Christian, but also as a nation. When God said, I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you, he wasn't speaking to Christians, technically.

He was speaking to the nations. And you see that get worked out over and over and over again throughout the Old Testament and even into the New Testament and even today. And so that when you get to the book of Numbers and you get to Numbers 22, 23, 24, and you get to Balaam and the donkey and that story, the whole thing is an image of what it means to try to curse Israel. There is a magician of some sort that was called up by the Moabite king. You've got to curse these Israelites.

You've got to get them out of here. Curse them. And every time he tried to curse them, only blessings came out.

That is a picture of Genesis 12, 3. You cannot curse the Jewish people. God will only bless them. And if you try to curse them, you will experience God's wrath.

Can I also say this, too? When you actually study the two Hebrew words, I will bless those who bless you. The Hebrew word for blessing there is the same one. I will bless those who bless you. But when you get to I will curse those who curse you, they're actually two different Hebrew words.

The actual rendering of the Hebrew should sound like this. I will bless those who bless you, but the one who takes you lightly, I will curse. So it's not even the fact that you have to come in and curse Israel. All you have to do is take that relationship that God has with Israel lightly, and that's enough for cursing to come. I don't think that's gone away.

I think it's still present to this very, very day. And so, again, how do you wrestle with the secular Israel in light of what God is doing? That's something that I think the Spirit of God's got to work on in your own life.

We only see what's going on in 2023. God sees the whole picture. When you see the whole picture, I think you're able to better understand, okay, I understand this moment, but it's my duty to support Israel and the Jewish people during this time, and not to take it lightly, to take it very seriously. Because it is the difference between God's righteousness, His goodness, and Satan's evil and diabolical plan to undo God's plan of redemption.

Yeah, it seems they can do both, can support their existence and what God says about them and so forth and so on, without overlooking the fact that they're in, like you said, their enemies for the gospel's sake, enemies of the gospel. You can do both at the same time without hating the Jewish people and knowing God is a future plan for them and using it as gospel witness to them as what Friends of Israel is doing and what we can do individually as well. So thank you for walking the balance beam there on how we view the nation of Israel in light of their current rebellion against God.

Chris Kotalka with us today here on the Christian worldview. Chris, what are you hearing within Israel right now? Either from Jewish believers in Christ or maybe even in just the Jewish religious community over their present situation in the state of Israel's heart before the Lord and why these attacks are happening and the turmoil going on in the country. Is there any kind of—I haven't heard it at least on the mainstream levels—like national repentance or introspection as to what's going on here? That's a really good question. I texted—the moment the event happened, I texted one of my really close Israeli friends who is a believer, and I said, How's it going?

What are you feeling? And he just wrote back, We need to repent. That was his thoughts. And I think that's the thought of many Israeli believers is repentance. You know, for the average Jewish person, average Israeli, I don't think they're thinking about those things. I think they're thinking more along the lines of God is on our side if they believe in a God.

You have to remember something about Israel. A vast majority of Israelis would consider themselves secular. Secular doesn't mean that they don't believe in God at all.

It just means they don't necessarily believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and practice Judaism. I've not heard anything in particular from the Orthodox community. Now, what I do know about the Orthodox community is that normally they don't serve in the military like the rest of the country does.

They have an opt-out option if you're ultra-Orthodox. They believe they're praying for the country. Now, they have gotten active in the military, which has been a big surprise. They've taken up an opportunity to defend their nation, but I don't know if that necessarily is a call for them to repent.

I've not heard anything like that. I have heard it from my Christian friends in Israel. The hard part is, as a believer in Yeshua, Jesus in Israel, there is both the connection to your country—they're very nationalistic people, Israelis—but then at the same time there's a connection to the Lord Jesus.

And so there is that heart-wrenching, we need to repent. I did hear that come out of the mouth of one of my dear friends, who I think has a good pulse on at least Bible-believing Christians in Israel. Chris, just a couple more questions. I asked you at the very beginning of the interview to give us a sense of the history, a brief history of Israel, the modern state of Israel. Now, here toward the end, I'd like to ask you to walk us through what you understand the Bible to teach about the end times, what Scripture says about the end times as it relates to Israel.

What's on the horizon? I know it's always fraught with risk to try to say, oh, what's going on now is going to lead to this and that to predict the future. But at least give us an idea of what you understand the Bible to teach about what the future is going to be, maybe not with specific events, but where things are going to move with the end times in Israel. The reason I love ministering with friends of Israel is that we are very responsible when it comes to God's prophetic word. We do not like to sensationalize prophecy. That's not our job. God's already written in his word.

We don't need to add to it. We don't often read the newspaper and then interpret Bible prophecy through it. But there are these instances that kind of begin to pop up and you go, OK, that's interesting. Well, I always like to say we'll keep an eye on it and see what happens when you see something like Turkey, Iran, China making a relationship with one another. Now, China is not in the picture biblically. But in Ezekiel 38 and 39, there are many countries. It's a regional battle. There's many countries surrounding Israel that come from the area of Russia and Turkey in the North Africa area that are surrounding Israel, that there is still this event that's yet to take place.

It's called the Battle of Gog and Magog. Now, it is very interesting. That's why when you see the president of Turkey saying, I'm going to send troops down into Gaza, you go, OK, wait a minute, I didn't see that one coming.

Or when you notice the specific relationships that are taking place. Iran, which is Persia in Ezekiel 38 and 39, when Iran is making relationships with Russia and Russia with Turkey, it's an interesting alliance that's going on there that is again pictured in Ezekiel 38 and 39, a battle that I actually think does happen before the pre-Trib rapture of the church, that the church is raptured. I think you can find that pretty clearly in First Thessalonians chapter four, that the church is caught up and we are not meant for God's wrath, it says earlier in First Thessalonians 110. And so the rapture is definitely the big event that's next on God's prophetic clock. But there is also this interesting battle that takes place as Israel is back in the land. And so that is an interesting battle. You see these events taking place.

So it does kind of, you know, the hair on the back of your neck starts to rise up a little bit. You go, OK, this is interesting. Again, we're not claiming it is the fulfillment of any of these things. The next event that will take place biblically is, I believe, the rapture of the church. But Israel has to be in the land for all these things to happen. And that is the reason why, again, Israel is an important player in the story of God's redemption.

Again, you're seeing all of these things being worked out. Whenever a Christian says, how should I interpret what's going on in the Middle East or what's going on with Israel? I always let them know you live in such unique times.

And I hope that your listeners hear this. You live in such unique times. For 2000 years, the Jewish people were scattered in a diaspora around the world with the hopes of returning to their ancient homeland as the prophets had promised.

And now, as a result of 1948, they are back. And as a Christian, you live in a time period where you could get on an airplane at any moment and fly to the Holy Land and experience the land of Israel and see it for yourself with Jewish people returning to the land just as the prophets promised. That kind of stuff cannot be ignored. And so when you're seeing those events happening, and again, that constant tension in the Middle East and around the world, anti-Semitism on the rise, I think we have to be responsible when it comes to God's prophetic word, not sensational, but also know we live in unique times.

We certainly do. And keep your eyes on Israel. The future does not revolve around the United States of America. Quite possibly, the U.S. will be involved in some way, maybe in that world system called Babylon. But things revolve around what's going on in Israel with God's chosen people. So we need to keep a close eye on there and just trust that God has His plan, and we can't make specific predictions at this point, but we need to pay attention. Thanks again to Chris Kotalka for joining us today from Friends of Israel Gospel Ministry.

foi.org is their website. Okay, just to briefly summarize what it means to bless Israel and the Jews. Believe God that He has chosen Israel and the Jews for His divine purposes.

Thank Him that He gave us His law and His Son, the Messiah, and the Gospel through them. No, you don't have to overlook their God-rejection. They are enemies of the Gospel at this point, and thus as a nation they will make ungodly decisions, as all nations do. They need to be born again the same way Gentiles are, by repenting and believing in Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. There's not a dual covenant. There's not a second way to be saved for the Jews. And so we support their existence in the land.

Don't be in favor of dividing or giving away land. Pray for the peace of Jerusalem, knowing that peace will only come when Christ returns, defeats, judges, and reigns. I apologize that we ran out of time. I wanted to read that page on Bible prophecy from Steve Miller's devotional, but you can order the devotional for a donation of any amount to the Christian worldview. The title is, One Day Nearer, Daily Devotions in Anticipation of Jesus' Glorious Return. Our contact information is given immediately following today's program.

Thank you for joining us today. Until next time, think biblically, live accordingly, and stand firm. The mission of The Christian Worldview is to sharpen the biblical worldview of Christians and to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ. We hope today's broadcast encouraged you toward that end. To hear a replay of today's program, order a transcript, or find out, What Must I Do to Be Saved, go to thechristianworldview.org or call toll-free 1-888-646-2233. The Christian Worldview is a listener-supported, non-profit radio ministry furnished by the Overcomer Foundation. To make a donation, become a Christian Worldview partner, order resources, subscribe to our free newsletter, or contact us, visit thechristianworldview.org, call 1-888-646-2233, or write to Box 401, Excelsior, Minnesota 55331. That's Box 401, Excelsior, Minnesota 55331. Thanks for listening to The Christian Worldview.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-11-11 04:17:21 / 2023-11-11 04:38:09 / 21

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