Dan Juster

Restoration From Zion
"Pray that the Messianic Jewish community and the Arab Christian Community in Israel will join together as a witness to truth."

Some of my friends find Israel's policy very confusing. What does the current Israeli government really want? Further complicating the matter is the lack of unity among those who form the ruling government coalition. (Cabinet members regularly speak out for their preferred policies even when it is not the policy of the Prime Minister.)

In light of this hard-to-understand, yet vital subject matter, I want to share some of my thoughts about the Israeli approach regarding the West Bank and the idea of a separate Palestinian State.

What Israelis Really Think about Palestinian Intentions

Israelis generally believe that the Palestinians have no intention of negotiating a real agreement that would safeguard the security and the Jewishness of Israel as a state while making room for a Palestinian state. This is their conclusion after the Palestinian rejection of the last two big Israeli offers - the first in the year 2000 by Ehud Barak to Yassir Arafat; the other in 2008 by Ehud Olmert to Mahmoud Abbas. Most Israelis currently believe any language of peace coming from Palestinians is a ruse to deceive a naïve world and destroy Israel.

So while the Israeli government gives lip service to a two state solution, they no longer think that it could really work. Most Israeli Jews believe the Palestinians are not a genuine or credible partner. Two issues clarify this.

Firstly, the major Jewish settlement blocks in the "West Bank" are cities with 20,000 to 50,000 citizens each. Altogether 750,000 Israelis live on the "other" side of the "green line". The Abbas position to accept none of these existing settlement blocks spelled the end of negotiations with him, even though all previous plans kept the major blocks as part of Israel with land swaps for the Palestinians.

Secondly, the idea of the return of Arab refugee in large numbers is another condition that is impossible for Israel to approve. Netanyahu can say he is in favor of a two state solution, and maybe theoretically he is if Israel's red lines are not crossed. But this hardly seems possible now. The recent UN resolution declaring all communities on the other side of the green line to be illegal, may have made it impossible forever.

Israel's Strategy?

So the Israeli approach is to call for negotiations, but basically just to wait. For what then might Israel be waiting? One thought is that the day could come when the world would realize that Jordan is really a Palestinian state, and that Palestinian areas should be part of Jordan and the Jewish areas part of Israel. West Bank Palestinians would have Jordanian citizenship and Gaza would either be independent or go back to Egypt. In fact Jordan was originally part of the Palestine Mandate for Jewish settlement. Today, the great majority of the Jordanian population is Palestinian. So the logical Palestinian state is Jordan. But King Hussein is not Palestinian and rules through a minority tribe. He does not want any more Palestinian citizens and hence wants a second Palestinian State.

The Palestinian Tactic and Israel's Response

Abbas is seeking to establish a state without solving the security issues for Israel, nor compromising on the large settlement blocks. This makes Israel's waiting game difficult. Hence the push by some to see Israel annex the large settlements and additional West Bank areas. Such unilateral moves by Israel would match the recent unilateral moves of Abbas and the UN. On the other hand, some are urging the government coalition to be quiet and stop calling for annexations. They want to act in close cooperation with President Trump, including pushing back the disastrous UN resolution that declared even the Jewish Quarter of the Old City in Jerusalem, to be illegal.

It's quite a mess, and we have no choice but to wait and see what will happen. In the meantime we should be praying fervently for God's intervention.

Here are some prayer points:

1. Pray that Christians will not be deceived by Palestinian propaganda.

2. Pray that the government of Israel will receive supernatural wisdom to navigate the great difficulties of the present situation.

Pray that the Messianic Jewish community and the Arab Christian Community in Israel will join together as a witness to truth.

By Daniel Juster
Dan Juster is on the board of Tikkun International and oversees the Tikkun America network of congregations. Donate to Restoration from Zion.
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06:16 02Mar17 Jabez Hart -
The Bible, as we acknowledge is eschatological -- holding the future in its grasp. Certainly Zechariah's foreknowledge seems to deal with this matter and how that will play out. Later Ezekiel speaks of those foreigners in the land being grandfathered into the twelve tribes. Of course we have too wait and see how so, but mostly trust Abba to know and plan for redemptive intention until that Day. Covenant promise outcomes culminate with the coming King and kingdom of Messiah.

00:57 03Mar17 Ratna deJoodt -
What does the LORD GOD say about Israel? Did the LORD give the Land to Israel or the so called Palestinians? The Arab people who call themselves Palestinian are a big lie. The true Palestinians are the Israelis. When Jewish people got the land back they took back their Name Israel as such there is no such thing called two state solution and you know your Word of GOD/the Bible never says anything two state and it says GOD will deal with people who try to divide the Land. Israel cannot afford to assimilate thousands of Arabs. The Arab countries are so large and those people must accommodate them and leave Israel alone. I look at the land GOD gave to the Jews and see now a tiny bit of a land. I pray that Jews will be able to enjoy their land in peace as the Arabs slowly and silently move into their Arabic lands. Of course the Pals who want to live peacefully with Jews can stay on. GOD ALMIGHTY will always keep HIS WORD and I pray as people pray miracles will happen.

  -- Dr Juster replies: All that you say is true. However, the details are not easy. Arabs too have homes, orchards, and more that they live by. Not to have citizenship anywhere, or to be uprooted and move to another country is no easy thing to see happen. But justice begins with agreeing with God.

10:44 04Mar17 Cindy Carmack -
Thank you, thank you, Dan Juster, for this clear explanation of the Israeli/Palestinian dilemma. And thank you for clearly defining what the prayer points should include. May the unity of the "one new man" truly come forth as a uniting force for The Gospel to spread and thrive in Beloved Israel.

Also in this issue of the newsletter:
Asher Intrater: New Age of Acts of the Apostles
Eitan Shishkoff: A Trail to Follow
Terri Morey: Healings Blossom
Cody Archer: Entrusted, 4 Keys for Resisting Sexual Sin
Daniel Juster: Approaching the Bible's Teaching on Healing