The Beginning of the End: The Alignment of the Nations Against Israel/Program 1
|By: Adnan Husseini, Benjamin Netanyahu, Moshe Arens, Major General (retired) Jacob Amidror, Lt. General Jerry Boykin, Itamar Marcus, Dr. Gabriel Barkay, Benjamin Elon, Hillel Weiss, Daniel Dayan, Abraham Rabinovich, Dr. Jimmy DeYoung; ©2008|
|Israel is a small nation, surrounded by enemies on all sides. Follow along as we visit key areas and discuss the Israel’s safety concerns.|
Today on the John Ankerberg Show, from Jerusalem, we will be covering these issues. What is the number one threat to the existence of Israel today?
- Benjamin Netanyahu: I think we have to do everything in our power to prevent the arming of Iran with nuclear weapons. On this, I have to say, there is absolute unanimity in Israel.
- Moshe Arens: Nuclear capability in the hands of the Iranians is not only a threat against Israel, that’s a threat to the world.
Is Iran the only threat Israel is facing? What about Hamas in Gaza, and Hezbollah in Lebanon?
- Jimmy DeYoung: John, Iran is the major threat according to the Israeli intelligence community as far as the Jewish State of Israel is concerned. But it’s not the only threat in this neighborhood.
- Netanyahu: We’re being not only being told that we’ll be wiped off the face of the earth, but also that Iranian-backed proxies are establishing themselves at our doorsteps and rocketing our people.
- Gen. Jerry Boykin: I think it’s only a matter of time until there will be another attack out of south Lebanon, again supported by the Syrian, as well as the Iranians.
- Ankerberg: People want to know, what are the nations that are mentioned in the Bible, in prophecy that will have a role in the end-time scenario of what happens here in Israel?
- DeYoung: We are now seeing a list of Arab nations, with the exception of Russia, who will form this coalition to come against Israel in the last days.
But do military and political leaders really believe radical Islam poses a threat to Israel and other nations?
- Boykin: People say this is a war of ideas; no, this is just like every other war, it’s a war for terrain. And that terrain is the whole world. And radical Islam is a treat to the entire world. It is now the fastest growing religion.
- Netanyahu: Islam rejects any territorial or political solution. It wants the dissolution of the State of Israel. And this is the problem; this is the source of the problem. This is why it’s becoming so dangerous, because how can you negotiate with somebody who wants your destruction?
My guest today, and guide through Israel, is news correspondent Dr. Jimmy DeYoung, who has lived in Jerusalem since 1993. He as interviewed every Israeli Prime Minister over the last 15 years, as well as Jordan’s King Abdullah and the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. We invite you to join us for this special edition of the John Ankerberg Show.
- Ankerberg: As you look down at the nation of Israel from space, you realize how small it really is. Israel stretches only 263 miles from north to south and its width ranges from 71 miles at its widest point to only 9 miles at its narrowest point. To the northeast Israel faces a 47 mile border with Syria; to the north a 49 mile border with Lebanon; to the east Israel has a 147 mile long border with Jordan; and to the southwest, Israel borders Egypt; and directly south has a small window onto the Red Sea. This map will give you an idea of Israel’s land mass as compared to the 22 Arab and Muslim countries surrounding it.
- With all of this in mind, we will begin our trip today in the Judean wilderness, close to the Jordanian border, and only a few miles from the Dead Sea. Jimmy DeYoung drove the Land Rover to show me what the country looks like along the four borders of Israel, and to realize how locked in Israel is to the nations surrounding her.
- DeYoung: John, let’s go up to this high spot up here. I want to show you the historical significance of this place, plus the political significance we were talking about a bit earlier. See, you have over here the Dead Sea, the northern end of the Dead Sea. It stretches out for about 67 miles, all the way down to the Red Sea, which would be the southernmost border. And this entire border, the longest border with the State of Israel is the Jordanian border. And you have Jordan over there, Amman, Jordan, which is only 15 miles. Back over here you have Jerusalem, which is about 15 miles up to there. The Kidron Valley…
- Ankerberg: How far up to Jerusalem?
- DeYoung: We are talking about 15 miles from here.
- Ankerberg: So it is not far.
- DeYoung: Not very far.
- Ankerberg: How far is the Jordanian border?
- DeYoung: Well, it is about 15 miles, too.
- Ankerberg: Fifteen miles. So, boy, I tell you, that’s really close.
- DeYoung: Very close.
- Ankerberg: So you are about an hour from what, the capital city in Jordan?
- DeYoung: Yeah, from Jerusalem to Amman, about an hour. And in a jet aircraft, minutes.
- Ankerberg: Yeah. I heard that if Israel was under surprise attack, it would take five minutes from Jordan, and only ten minutes from Syria. That is all they have got, and it takes them three minutes to get off to defend themselves.
- DeYoung: See, Israel is living in a tough neighborhood. And that’s basically what I want everybody to comprehend as I take you on this trip, touching the borders of the State of Israel, these nations who would like to rid the world of these Jewish people.
- Ankerberg: While we are here, how… I mean, explain how Israel is hemmed in by people that are not friendly to them here.
- DeYoung: Well, you’ve the south, you have got Egypt. Over here you have got Jordan. They say they are somewhat friendly, but there is an Islamic movement over there that’s becoming very radical. You have Syria, and you have Lebanon. And out to the west, of course, you have the Mediterranean. So they are locked in, this piece of real estate which is the land bridge between three continents, Africa, Asia and Europe. But it is locked in with enemies surrounding them. Let’s travel up the highway and I’ll show you.
- Ankerberg: Looking down on Israel from space, people always wonder, where is the city of Jerusalem? Well, here you can see it, and that’s where we’re going next. We wanted to find out from Israeli leaders what kinds of threats and attacks Israel is experiencing from its neighbors. Who better to explain this than the former Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu. Listen carefully to his words about Hezbollah in Lebanon and Hamas in Gaza.
- Netanyahu: It would have Hezbollah now with a tremendous base, and you can see that the international guarantees that were supposed to stop the flow of arms did nothing of the kind. And so we not only had 4000 rockets fired on the Galilee from that base, but we now have 40,000 rockets which are aimed at every part of Israel. And at the same time the same thing has happened in the south. We’ve had, by the way, a tremendous increase in the power of Hamas. It actually wasn’t only politically strengthened, but very shortly afterwards it militarily just took over the Gaza Strip and kicked out the Palestinian Authority, and it’s become… developed a base. They’ve rocketed 4000 rockets, that’s the number since the unilateral disengagement, 4000. By the way, the rate is, I think about just, if you take equivalent time periods, the increase in rocketing is, I think now at the rate of what? 16 times? 18 times? I don’t remember what it was, just to give you a feeling of what we’re talking about.
- Ankerberg: Did you catch what Mr. Netanyahu just said? On the southern Lebanese border, Hezbollah now has 40,000 rockets aimed at every part of Israel. And Hamas in Palestinian controlled Gaza is shooting rockets into Israel at a rate of 16-18 times greater than before. How would you feel if a neighboring state here in America was shooting rockets into your state? To find out how the Israelis felt, I asked this question of Maj. Gen. Jacob Amidror who for close to 28 years was the Deputy Military Intelligence Chief for the Israeli Defense Force. He has recently retired and is now with the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. Listen to his answer:
- Maj. Gen. Jacob Amidror: Many Israelis are very how to call it, disappointed by the behavior of the Palestinians who, you have to remember, which were offered by Prime Minister Barak 90% of the West Bank and 100% of Gaza, and the answer was war. So many Israelis are lost their hope that in our generation will be a real peace between us and the Palestinians. And what we have to do is to guarantee that til the day will come, we will be in a situation that we can defend ourselves. And it means to reconquer the West Bank, which we did in 2002. And maybe going back into Gaza, because otherwise we are suffering every day mortars and rockets from Gaza into the populated Jewish areas around Gaza.
- Ankerberg: So if Israel is already being threatened and attacked on their borders with Lebanon, Syria and Gaza, where are things headed in the future? Today, we will hear the startling information that God has revealed to the prophets about the nations that will come against Israel in the last days. Jimmy and I talked about this as we walked through the narrow streets of the Jewish Quarter in the Old City of Jerusalem.
- Ankerberg: Jimmy, we’re walking on a jam packed street, and you couldn’t have picked a more controversial piece of real estate in the world than where we’re walking right now.
- DeYoung: That is exactly correct because, as the Jewish Quarter, already we see what is going to happen ultimately in the end times. There is going to be a battle between the Muslims and the Jews, and there is going to be that conflict that is going to ultimately end with the campaign of Armageddon; and all the armies of the world gather around the city of Jerusalem. Now, this one square mile, which is the Old City of Jerusalem today, is going to be the main focus for Jesus Christ when He comes back to rebuild His temple on the Temple Mount here in this Old City. But the truth is, before that all happens this place, this piece of real estate, is going to be a very controversial location, just as you said. It is going to be something that is intoxicating for those who control it, according to the ancient Jewish prophet Zechariah.
- Ankerberg: Now, in terms of the negotiations at the peace treaties right now, the fact is, they already have this piece of real estate. But they want the ones that are right next to it, all the Jewish Quarter all the way around up to the Temple Mount. They want the whole thing.
- DeYoung: That is exactly right. As they are now in negotiations, and we don’t know where those negotiations are going to go, because the Jewish people and the Israeli governmental leaders do not want to give up the Temple Mount, though there has been some conversation that they may consider that. But the mass majority of the Jewish people believe that that sacred spot, I mean, you talk to a secular Jew, still the Temple Mount is sacred to them traditionally. They don’t want to give it up. But the negotiators at the table, the Palestinians, the Israelis, are talking about this. And the Palestinians say they are not going to give up a right to have this as their capital city in their Palestinian state. So we are going to continue to see the conflict unfold and intensify in the days ahead.
- Ankerberg: Yeah, I also think that when they talk about the fact of giving free access up and down, the Jewish people aren’t given free access now, and they own it.
- DeYoung: They are restricted as to the times that they can go up there. They are not allowed to pray on the Temple Mount….
- Ankerberg: Look at the fish. Boy, doesn’t that smell good?
- DeYoung: …not allowed to read the Bible.
- DeYoung: Hello, there. Great fish, great fish. Hey, look at this sardine.
- Ankerberg: This is the one that Jimmy caught. Mine is hanging up over here on the rack.
- Vendor: We have big fish.
- DeYoung: Big fish.
- Vendor: Look here, biggest one
- Ankerberg: Yeah, that is mine.
- DeYoung: Well, in the marketplace here you can find everything you want in the Old City of Jerusalem.
- Ankerberg: Now, during this series we will be considering five things. First, the nations today who want to destroy Israel. Second, the nations the Bible predicts will come against Israel in the last days. Third, the nations Israeli political leaders see as a threat to Israel. Fourth, the nations Israeli and American military leaders believe are a threat to Israel. And fifth, the conclusions we should draw. One day as we sat on the Mount of Olives and overlooked the Temple Mount I asked Jimmy to lay out the specific nations God reveals will come against Israel in the last days.
- Ankerberg: Jimmy, as we look across the Old City of Jerusalem and we see the Dome of the Rock, the third holiest site for the Islamic world; and you also see the Jewish Temple Mount here, which is the sacred mount of the Jewish people across the world. We see two opposing opinions and it talks about what is up ahead, the battle for Jerusalem. And I want to ask the question, people want to know, what are the nations that are mentioned in the Bible, in prophecy that will have a role in the end-time scenario of what happens here in Israel?
- DeYoung: You know, John, that Dome of the Rock speaks to that group of nations, that alignment that will come against Israel, because that is a Muslim building. It’s a commemorative building that Omar, one of the Muslim leaders, built there on the Temple Mount in 691 AD. But the Islamic world is what is going to basically come together, align themselves to try to destroy the Jewish state. With one exception: Russia is mentioned in the book of Ezekiel chapter 38.
- Here in the book of Ezekiel chapter 38, which would be the main focus in Bible prophecy, other sections of the Bible we will look at. But in Ezekiel 38 it talks here in verse 2 about Magog, Gog in the land of Magog. Now, Gog would be the person, Magog would be the particular state that it’s talking about. And according to biblical geography, Magog would have been that land mass north of the Caspian and Black Sea, which is Russia today.
- Then in verse 2 it says, Meshech and Tubal, and down in verse 6 it says Gomer and Togarmah. When travelling in Turkey recently I picked up an ancient Turkish map. And in biblical times Turkey was actually divided into four parts, Meshech, Tubal, Gomer and Togarmah. So we are now talking about Russia and Turkey.
- There in verse 5 it says Persia. Until 1936 there were three nations we know today that were known as Persia. Those three nations are Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran. And then you continue on in verse 5, Ethiopia or Cush in some translations, that would be Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan. And then in verse 5 again it says here in my Bible, Libya, or maybe in another translation Put. Well, that’s modern day Libya, Colonel Qaddafi.
- You have to coordinate this with Daniel chapter 11 verses 40-45. It talks about the King of the North. Earlier in chapter 11 you find out that is what we know as Syria today. And the King of the South would be Egypt today. And then going over into the book of Psalms, you go over to the book of Psalms chapter 83 and it talks in Psalm 83 about a list of nations. It mentions here the Ishmaelites; well, that’s modern day Saudi Arabia. And then in verse 5 it talks about Tyre; that’s modern day Lebanon. So we are now seeing a list of Arab nations, with the exception of Russia, who will form this coalition to come against Israel in the last days.
- Ankerberg: Alright, the principle that you’re using is that when the prophet saw geographical areas in his own day he had to mention those names as being the people from those geographical areas that would be coming against Israel in the future.
- DeYoung: John, that is a hermeneutical principle when you look at biblical geography. Who was the author writing about? Who was King David writing about when he wrote the Psalm? Who was Ezekiel writing about when he wrote Ezekiel 38? Who was Daniel writing about when he wrote the book of Daniel chapter 11? They were taking about specific states or nations that were in existence at that time. We don’t look at a nation today; we go by what God’s word says. So if he is going to talk about a prophecy we have to be specific about the locations as well.
- Ankerberg: Alright, take me around Israel and take me through the Middle East, specifically those countries. What is the latest intelligence report about what we are getting about what is happening in those countries?
- DeYoung: In the south you have Egypt; of course you have also the Gaza Strip, which is somewhat of a buffer between Israel proper and Egypt itself. But when you look at Egypt, there in Egypt you have the Islamic Brotherhood. Well, the Islamic Brotherhood, they birthed the al Qaeda movement and Osama bin Laden. The number two man in al Qaeda is from the Islamic Brotherhood. Yasser Arafat learned everything he learned from the Islamic Brotherhood from a special Sheikh, a high ranking Muslim cleric, who taught him. He established the Palestinian people, the fighting force, the resistance against the Jewish State of Israel that would be throughout the entire Gaza Strip. And Hamas, Hamas was founded by a blind sheikh named Yassin. He comes directly from Egypt out of the Islamic Brotherhood. So that is in the south of Israel.
- Over to the east you have the longest border with Israel and that would be Jordan. Now we are not so much concerned about Jordan under the leadership of King Abdullah. But what should be of concern is that 70% of the population of Jordan is Palestinian. And so, though King Abdullah is from the Hashemite kingdom out of Saudi Arabia, he has a people and he is very much concerned about even the peace process. What does Israel decide with developing another Palestinian state? Does that extend then over into Jordan? Though the borders are pretty friendly that long border from the south in Elat all the way to Mount Hermon in the north, with Jordan there is still some concern of that great population of Palestinian people there.
- At the northeastern corner there at Mount Hermon you have Syria. From the location where we can stand looking over at Kinetra and the United Nations headquarters, you are about 25-30 miles on into Damascus. And there have been reports that the Syrian soldiers are being massed on that border. They would like to take the Golan Heights. Now you travel up to Mount Hermon by going over the plateau of the Golan Heights right there to the foothills of Mount Hermon. That area they would like to control. In fact, they said “we are going to get it back either diplomatically or militarily.” So should they move into position on the Golan Heights, that is going to be a real threat to the body politick of Israel.
- Across that northern border you have Lebanon. Lebanon is in somewhat of a turmoil today. They are not even able to elect a President for a number of months. But you have in southern Lebanon Hezbollah, which was dispatched to southern Lebanon. They are not Lebanese people, they are Iranians; they are part of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard sent into southern Lebanon by the Ayatollah Khomeini back in 1982. And today they are directed in everything that they do. Sheikh Nasrallah is the leader of Hezbollah. He gets his orders directly from Tehran and from President Ahmadinejad of Iran.
- And so there you have Egypt and Hamas in the south. You have Jordan on the eastern border. The northeastern corner Syria who wants that Golan Heights back, who wants to expand into greater Syria. You have Lebanon, you have Hezbollah there. That is just surrounding this little State of Israel, just a little piece of real estate surrounded by these nations that I mentioned, but actually 23 Arab nations with over 300 million people