Last week we reflected on the scriptures that speak of a conflict between Israel and a coalition of nations, as described in Ezekiel chapters 38 and 39. The prophet Zechariah describes what is apparently a different conflict, when “all the nations of the earth” will gather against Jerusalem, which is described as a “cup of trembling”, a “rock” that cannot be lifted. The Lord Himself will intervene to protect the city (Zechariah 14):
“Then the Lord will go out and fight against those nations, as he fights on a day of battle. On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem, and the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west, forming a great valley, with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south.”
This end-time conflict involving “all nations” focuses on Jerusalem. Jerusalem has of course always been controversial. But today we see an intensification of the international focus on Jerusalem, and increasing hostility towards Jews who live in what the world has come to call “the West Bank including East Jerusalem”.
A week ago the International Criminal Court (ICC) decided to proceed with the indictment and possible prosecution of Israeli leaders for the “war crime” of building Israeli “settlements” in Jerusalem and the “West Bank”.
So, what is a “settlement”? A “settlement” is no more, and no less, than a Jewish person.
This decision means that just allowing a Jewish person to live in the Old City of Jerusalem, or in Shilo, Hebron or the Jordan Valley, is considered to be a “war crime” warranting prosecution by the world’s highest international criminal court, that was established to capture and incarcerate the world’s worst criminals.
Settlements may be politically incorrect, inconvenient, irresponsible, even an obstacle to peace – those are allegations within the realm of comprehension about which opinion can differ.
But a “war crime”?
Logic, reason, common sense – even law itself – have been turned on their head.
Is this not a sign that Jerusalem is becoming the “cup of trembling for the nations”, an “immovable rock”, of which the Prophet Zechariah speaks?
The Editorial team
Israel & Christians Today