US appears to restart Middle East talks

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There is so much happening in the Middle East, in and round Israel, that may have prophetic significance.

Rick Ridings will have an Egypt post probably by the end of the week. The world continues to painfully watch Syria destroy itself. Turkey is still trying to stifle protests.

israel-palestine-flags-bugHowever, the week closed with big news on God’s signpost (Zion). United States Secretary of State (aka top diplomat) John Kerry announced — on his sixth trip to the region — that Israel and the Palestinians have agreed to restart peace negotiations. Talks broke down in 2010, reportedly over Israel’s building in areas Palestinians claim, including East Jerusalem.

Israel reported that there were no preconditions to restarting the talk. Palestinians said the negotiating on borders would begin with the pre-1967 lines, that is the 1949 armistice lines (contradicted by other sources).  Later, an Israeli official said Palestinian prisoners would be released.

A Times of Israel headline summed up in an analysis: In a confused start to talks, reasons to take heart.

That piece had a concise but valuable explanation of the how the Palestinians may view pre-1967 map lines:

“There is some confusion on the 1967 issue. It does not refer only to borders, but also to the size of the future Palestinian state. To negotiate based on the 1967 lines means, for Israelis, to agree to a Palestinian state the size of the West Bank, and then seek minor land swaps that would bring many Jewish communities over the Green Line inside the Israeli border. To negotiate without that basis means that the Palestinians would accept the major settlement blocs as Israeli territory, and that the final area of the Palestinian state would inevitably be smaller than the pre-1967 West Bank. In maps drawn up in late 2005 by then-prime minister Ariel Sharon ahead of a possible unilateral West Bank pullout, that Palestinian West Bank was about 14 percent smaller than the West Bank defined by the Green Line.”

For Bible believers, there is a more pressing issue of forcing Israel to the pre-1967 lines — the division of Jerusalem.

After Israel’s fight for independence in 1948 and 1949, Jordan controlled east Jerusalem, including the Old City, the Western Wall, the Temple Mount. After Israel’s preemptive strike on its conspiring neighbors in the Six Day Way, Israel reunited the city of Jerusalem. After 19 years, they were once again able to pray at the Western Wall.

The world is eager to give the Palestinians east Jerusalem as a capital, to once again wrest Israel’s most holiest sites from them. The nations voted on this issue in November 2012. (Read UN Says Palestine is a state. What’s the big deal? for details.)

I believe that is a dangerous position. Jerusalem is God’s chosen city. He is clear in scripture about His desire for the city from where Messiah will rule and reign.

For details on how the map lines have changed in the last 100 years, how giving the Palestinians East Jerusalem as their capital would rend a city in two and for what the Bible says will be the consequences for dividing the land, watch Israel & the Nations & Jesus’ Judgement. works a little like a newspaper. It categorizes the news into topics and is interactive. Click a topic on the right-hand column to “flip the page” and see another set of headlines. #Church includes headlines about persecution of the brothers. #Israel as all stories about “the apple of God’s eye.” #Matthew24 highlight end-time birth pangs detailed by Jesus.

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[Editor’s note: Please click on the screen capture to browse through this week’s headlines.]

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