In the early and mid 20th century as the alijahs occurred….(What is an alijah? It is a wave of immigration to the Holy Land and is called such because in Jewish thought, the Holy Land is high above all else.) ….. when Jews emigrated from Europe to Palestine, they were going there to gain safety and security, and secondly, to re-establish a Jewish culture and way of life. Most of these European Jews had left their shtetls and ghettos to become socialists and Marxists. (Remember “Fiddler on the Roof”?)
But things have changed in Israel: Enter “Religious Zionism”
The Jerusalem Post ran an article one year ago entitled: “How Religious Zionism Became a Pillar of Israel.”
Religious Zionism was very marginal before the Six Day War said Yair Sheleg, research fellow of the Israel Democracy Institute. But now, he says, “The religious Zionist community is a pillar of Israeli society.”
Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook was instrumental in the founding of this group. He said this:
The role of religious Zionists is to help them to establish a Jewish state and turn the religious spark in them into a great light….The real source of Zionism and the longed-for Zion is Judaism and the [teaching of the] Torah with love and kindness.
Today, 30 to 40 per cent of officers in the Israel Defense Forces are religious Zionists, and there are many in the media, politics, theatre and cinema with four members of the Supreme Court who are religious.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Enter, the Europeans
The West European people are casting off their religion and their identities.
They look forward to the abolition of nation-states (that means no nations—no national sense). They look forward to the situation in which there will be no France or Germany or Switzerland. They are driving towards a full European Union which they believe holds the key to the well-being of both Europe and the world. That would mean that people have to be willing to give up any right to independent action. Yes, that’s right! And they want that eventually other nations will join.
Why should we give up our rights as a nation? Because, these people say, and most Europeans agree, we have, in our recent history, the horrible results of wars conducted by aggressive nations. Example: Nazi Germany. If we would give up national rights, they say, we would have a world of peace. (This way of looking at the world was drawn by Immanuel Kant in a document entitled: "Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Sketch" in which he compared national independence to the lawless freedom of savages producing a barbaric disorder.)
With the drive towards the European Union, the nations of Europe have established a new governing model in which the sovereign nation-state is no longer seen as holding the key to the well-being of humanity. On the contrary, it is seen now by many European leaders as a source of great evil. Yes, under that model or paradigm, the U. S. shouldn’t be a separate nation; we should be a part of a much larger entity, maybe along with Europe, maybe along with Canada, Mexico and others. And eventually, there is the great ideal of a world government. And all the peoples should be willing to give up any right to act on the basis of one’s political independence.
Now, added to that, these thinkers and much of the populace in European countries are also casting off their religious heritage. No Christianity recognized. They can’t be bothered with it. They don’t believe.
In the writing of the new European Union constitution, it was decided that there would be no reference to Europe’s Christian heritage, only to the ever-expanding emphasis upon human rights. So, by this time, the young and middle-age population of Europe know very little to nothing about true Christianity. Their minds are empty of spiritual truth.
* * * * * * * * * * *
Now….it becomes more clear why Europe doesn’t feel good about Israel!
THE CONTRAST IS FULLY EVIDENT
1. The State of Israel is becoming stronger politically as a nation-state.
2. The State of Israel is becoming more religiously aware and active.
3. And the national religious youth of Israel are in the forefront.
Israel’s standing now with the West Europeans and American Liberals is not what it used to be. When Israel first became a state there was quite a bit of acclamation of its new existence in its rebirth. But now these leaders of Europe and the Democratic Party progressives in the U. S. do not look so favorably on Israel. And that is because Israel has a different way of being. Israel is unique and strongly-connected with its past.
As I point out in my book, Israel the Chosen, the Jewish People and the State of Israel have always been separate and distinct from other peoples. Not that all of them subscribe to this separateness, but it’s in their “reason for being.” They are “Chosen.” They are “kosher” just like their food—select, separate, specially set apart. They are like the Sabbath—again, specially set apart.
When you look at this from the Biblical and the Judaism position, they are a “holy people.” One aspect of holiness is to be set apart. Another is to be living a Godly life, pure and clean.
By and large, I would say that the Europeans hate this idea. They want to wipe out such distinctions. They want to be inclusive with no race or ethnic group better than any other. They want to be “universalistic,” Designations like “The Chosen People,” are distasteful to them.
As I said, Europe is largely secular—godless. They’ve left out any reference to God in their modern constitution. It wasn’t overlooked; it was a decision.
NOTE: Some of the intellectual Israelis want to be like Europe. They think like Europe; they travel to Europe; they strive for Israel to be like Europe. Think of that in relation to the 1940's and the increasing anti-Semitism today.
NOTE ALSO: The European Union is a trading partner with Israel. And that is because what Israel produces is of high quality and the latest technology.
WATCH THEN: How the Europeans and Israelis interact…. in trading, in the United Nations and in cultural events.
BUT: As noted at the beginning, Israel is becoming more and more interested in her relationship with her Covenant Lord God. Allelujah!
But let Israel hear the Word of the Lord…..
Listen to me, you who know righteousness,
You people who have my teaching in your hearts;
Do not fear the reproach of others,
And do not be dismayed when they revile you….
My deliverance will be forever
And my salvation to all generations….
See, my servant shall prosper;
He shall be exalted and lifted up,
and shall be very high.
- Isaiah 51:7-8; 52:13 (NRSV)
In the Book of Numbers, the story is told of King Balak (of Moab) who wants a curse put on the Israelites who are in their wilderness trek towards the Promised Land (Canaan).
He calls the semi-godly and semi-pagan prophet Balaam, to come to him and curse Israel in their presence. He will pay Balaam handsomely and honor him extravagantly. “Just come and do it,” said the king.
Balaam answered “no.” But the king persisted.
WHAT’S THE PROBLEM? King Balak is afraid of Israel after hearing of the destruction of a large area of Amorite cities and villages--recent military triumphs of Israel. And he is angered that the nation Israel should travel so close to Moab’s territory.
So…the prophet Balaam prepares to go to the Moabite king, thinking of the remuneration and prestige. He will put a curse on the Israelites.
* * * * * * * * * *
The State of Israel is despised and feared, so a curse must be placed upon her…. not just be victorious in warfare with Israel, but be RID of Israel! Curse them!
THIS IS A TALE OF TODAY.
Similar to….. Black Lives Matter--its platform in August of 2016 in which it accuses the State of Israel of perpetrating genocide against the Palestinians. They’ve labeled Israel an “apartheid” state and want Israel as a state gone.
Similar to…. Palestinian Sheikh Nasser Maarouf of the Palestine Islamic Scholars Association, in a July 3rd interview who said that the millions of people who were killed in the World Wars died because of the Jews who, he said, tyrannize and corrupt the world, blaming them for world poverty, bloodshed and the violation of women’s honor all over the world. They feed and finance corruption wherever they are. This is very typical of Muslim cleric slander.
And then, there is much of the American academic community which is calling for the academic and cultural boycott of Israel.
* * * * * * * * * *
BUT…BACK TO OUR STORY
Balaam, the semi-Godly, semi-pagan prophet, is given permission by God to go to confer with King Balak who wants a curse on Israel. Nevertheless, God expressed His displeasure by making Balaam’s donkey stop cold in his tracks. When Balaam strikes his donkey, the donkey TALKS….rebels.
Whoa! Balaam now knows that even though he has God’s permission, that He is displeased. An angel appears to speak the words of God:
“Behold, I have come out to oppose you, because your way is perverse before me.”
GET THIS NOW: Balaam says, “If it is evil in your sight, I will turn back.” Well, duh. The Lord, in the first place, told him not to go. Nevertheless, the Lord through the angel now tells him to go on. Why? God has His reasons.
NOW THE PROPHET BALAAM MEETS KING BALAK. He is present with all his princes. A great Middle East summit meeting.
The prophet had warned: “The word that the Lord puts in my mouth, that will I speak.” (Good for him) And now at their meeting, on a summit viewing the camped Israelites, the prophet Balaam paused as he viewed the encampment of God’s people….paused to listen for the divine voice, and this is what he heard:
“Behold, a people dwelling alone,
And not counting itself among the nations!
Who can count the dust of Jacob,
Or number the fourth part of Israel?
Let me die the death of the upright,
And let my end be like his.”
Ah, remember what God told Abraham: “Look toward heaven and number the stars…So shall your offspring be.” Fertility was the promise. Here that fertility was seen.
Balaam was so impressed that he desired to die among God’s people. Hm-m.
All right. That wasn’t working for King Balak. He wanted to try a second time to get a curse from Baalam. So he, Baalam, and the princes went to a different vista to try again. “Perhaps it will please God to curse them there,” he said. Remember, he’s very afraid of this nation of people.
And again at that place, Balak anxiously asked: “What has the Lord spoken?” And Balaam said this to the king: “Rise, Balak, and hear:
“Behold, I have received a command to bless:
He has blessed, and I cannot revoke it….
For there is no enchantment against Jacob….
The Lord their God is with them…
Now it shall be said of Jacob and Israel,
What has God wrought!”
“What has God wrought!” The prophet is overwhelmed with awe! He’s so impressed.
King Balak was overwhelmed too, but with anger. He struck his hands together. But Balaam retorted: “Did I not tell your messengers….that I would not be able to go beyond the word of the Lord?”
Now the final oracle that Balaam gave, not really wanted by Balak was this amazing prophecy:
“The oracle of him….who knows the vision
of the Almighty….I see him, but not now;
I behold him, but not near;
A star shall come out of Jacob;
and a scepter shall arise out of Israel.”
What is being conveyed in this oracle or prophetic utterance?
This indeed is what will come out from Israel--out from the Chosen People: The Chosen Man—the Messiah. God’s blessing on Israel revealed here includes even this!
This is the plan of the eternal God of Israel. This is why God permitted Balaam to go to the summit meeting with King Balak—to speak His very Word.
Balak the king, stands for the nations that wish and work to defeat Israel. But Israel will not be vanquished. Israel will not be cursed. And Israel will be blessed.
* * * * * * * * * *
Israel is a nation that stands out. It is an unperfected nation as the incidents in the Book of Numbers before and after this one show. But it exists in a covenantal relationship with the Lord, and He will bring it to perfection after He cleanses Israel from her filthiness.
Those who wish to annihilate Israel, or slice off more land from her to allocate it to her enemies, or issue slanderous anti-Semitic declarations, or isolate and delegitimize her, or boycott her products, or continually attack her population with rockets, or issue sanctions against her, or issue unfair accusations in the World Court, the tribunals of the world and the United Nations Human Rights Council or the U. N. General Assembly will only hurt themselves and their own people. For God is not pleased.
“Well, of course,” you say. “But Jews are accepted and are part of the white establishment. Many of them are rich, and in the upper class. If you use this slogan on their behalf, you’re just passing off the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement as illegitimate.”
I do believe in taking one’s stand against the racism that de-humanizes the blacks and refuses to include them in the fabric of our society. Yet we must not forget the Jewish people who have experienced racism for their entire existence, beginning as a people in Egypt.
Yes, the Jews have experienced race-based hatred as well as blacks and other people of color.
Just yesterday, I heard this: “The world has always had problems with Jews.” Why? Because they are unique and, when they are truly observant, they are separate.
On Monday of this week, I received a report from the “Daily Alert” which in turn quoted a write-up from the Jewish Anti-Defamation League saying that there have been at least 35 anti-Jewish rallies in American cities since July 1st. They report that these rallies featured speeches and placards with insults and the typical Jew-hatred accusations. Here are some typical slams:
“The Jews are now showing that they learned from the Nazis.”
“The Jews rule the world by proxy; they get others to fight and die
“The Holocaust was not as severe as they say.”
“The Jewish lobby controls our government.”
And more…. like the accusations that Jewish-American politicians don’t know which country they represent—America or Israel. Another: “The Jews are taking over the world’s power centers. They have their hands in the financial holdings world-wide. They’ll eventually control everything."
These tropes aren’t new, so one wonders really when the Jewish takeover is going to happen.
In these rallies, one could hear blatant tropes/clichés/harangues, by which I mean sayings like this: “Then there are the put-downs/tropes/clichés about the STATE of Israel:
“Zionism is racism.” (Zionism is this: the movement of the Jewish people back to their country, most significantly, Jerusalem, which is called Zion.)
Get this: about half of these rallies blamed the Jews for police brutality in the United States!
The report further says that in the July 1st rally in Brooklyn, some in the mob chanted in Arabic, “Death to America, death to Israel.”
* * * * * * * * * * * *
Then there are the tropes about the State of Israel:
“Israel has an apartheid (absolute segregation on account of race) society."
“They are a colonial power.”
“The Palestinians are the descendants of the ancient Canaanites.”
ANOTHER: “Palestine belongs to the Palestinians.” Wrong again. The land was never independent following the expulsion of the Jews in 70 A. D. until the present. It was governed by empires. The population has been replaced many times over the past two thousand years. During the time when Britain controlled Palestine (about 1920 – 1947) there were more than 100,000 Arabs who moved in from neighboring Arab countries. It was never an independent state.
And….the name “Palestinian” for the Arabs who lived there was never used until the Palestine Liberation Organization and Yassir Arafat began their terrorist campaign for freedom from the Jews and their expulsion! Before that, Jews themselves called their associations “Palestinian” such as “The Palestine Symphony Orchestra in the 1930’s which was made up of Jews. The term “Palestinian” wasn’t used only of Arabs until the crew under Yassir Arafat came there from Tunisia in the 1960’s.
And now, the Arabs in Israel are citizens just like the Jews. And the Palestinians who do not have citizenship have much, much more than the Arabs of the neighboring countries and should have even more rights and higher living standards if the recent Trump plan goes into effect, with the West Bank under Israeli law and no more under military administration.
* * * * * * * * * *
Well, the Europeans have had long periods of cruel anti-Semitism in their history. Following World War II and the Holocaust, it lessened significantly. But in this 21st century anti-Semitism has revived, and the influx of Muslim immigrants has exacerbated the problem. The nations from which they originate are soaked with anti-Semitism in their culture and their platforms. In their countries the people continually hear that Jews are a cancer, that they are descendants of apes and pigs, are sub-human, etc. and that those who kill a Jew will be honored by Allah.
And now most European politicians are slow to denounce this poison in their midst and are feeble in their actions to combat this racism against the Jews. Their timidity is disheartening to the Jews living there.
And in America, it is heavy on our university campuses and among the far left and far right political activists. With the Muslim population increasing and so much favor shown to them and so much criticism against anyone who criticizes Islam, anti-Semitism is sure to increase.
So it has been in France. And Great Britain.
It would be nice if the Islamists could change their tune about the Jews. But it’s firmly ensconced in Muhammed’s life, in the Koran and in their tradition. Their children are taught to hate them and to kill them.
The question is: Will be take our stand against this virulent form of anti-Semitism?
* * * * * * * * * *
I must relate this incident. I know a young man who attended a large university in Pennsylvania and who had friends, both Muslim and Jewish. One day, as the young Muslim was visiting my friend in his apartment. All at once the Muslim young man flew into a rage: “How could you do this to me…I thought you and I were friends,” and on and on he went with his diatribe. What was it about? The problem was this: he happened to see on my friend’s desk a photo of two Jewish friends whose pictures made it evident that they were Jewish. The Muslim friend was actually a friendly personable fellow, but his rage erupted at the sight of Jewish people who were friends. He accused my friend of being a traitor to him. Thus: “If you’re my friend, you cannot be a friend of Jews!”
So who can we count as our friends, and whose lives matter to us? Will we take the way the world is moving— heedless of God’s election of the Chosen People? Or will we respect the Chosen of God, regardless of their shortcomings, because they represent the Torah--that Mosaic Law, the prophets, the Blessed Messiah and the apostles of that Messiah, Yeshua, Jesus.
It really does matter….a lot.
“I will bless those who bless you,
and him who dishonors you I will curse,
and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.”
-- Genesis 12 (ESV)
THE POSSIBLE ANSWERS COME FIRST:
1. The CoronaVirus
2. The demonstrations and rioting
3. The developing division in the Democratic Party between the traditional Democrats and Socialist-Progressives.
THE QUESTION: WHAT IS THE RECENT CAUSE OF ANXIETY AMONG AMERICAN JEWISH LEADERS?
ANSWER 3 IS CORRECT!
God is calling His people from the earth’s farthest corners to return to their land.
But the American Jews are not, for the most part, responding. About fifteen to twenty-thousand per decade are moving to Israel.
And now, anxiety is besetting them.
Their grandparents and forebears chose America, not Israel, as their new and glorious homeland.
Then these Jews from Europe and Russia chose the Democratic Party as their political home. During the presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, no other group was more supportive of his presidency than were the Jewish people in America. And, as a whole, they’ve never moved.
So….fine. They made that political choice. But, it is only now….of late….that anxiety has set into Jewish democrats.
In a conversation with Rabbi Mark Golub in a YouTube broadcast, Hank Sheinkopf, Democratic Political Consultant from New York City, just last week, aired his anxiety. What’s happening? The democrats are heading leftward to radical positions and pushing the traditional democrats out of the political arena.
In New York City, Sheinkopf’s man, Eliot Engel, who represented his congressional district in the Bronx and Westchester, was democrat and traditional and had served for sixteen terms in the House of Representatives. He had been chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee. Now the votes are in, except for mail-ins. It’s clear--Eliot Engel’s opponent is a shoe-in.
His replacement is farther left. It’s a indication of what’s happening. Hank Sheinkopf says: “There is a takeover of the Democratic Party.”
The Jews of New York could depend on their man, Mr. Engel; but now he’s on his way out. Engel is a Jew-- thoroughly vetted and honored by the Jewish community in New York…supported by its big money. In the primary, he has been voted out. His replacement is an African-American school principal.
Gone are the times when New York’s Jews could depend on their Democratic Party to further their liberal programs and keep a watchful eye on the State of Israel…oh, and watch over all the Jews of New York City. And furthermore, Engle has been Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the House of Representatives. That is important because he has been a watchman in Congress on behalf of the State of Israel! But now he is on his way out.
The winner looks to be Jamaal Bowman, a Middle School Principal. The district is partly Hispanic and black as well as Jewish. His campaign was like that of Occasio-Cortez’.
The new leftward faction is shoving the traditional Jewish democrats OUT….and these New York Jews are nervous. Why? Because they are no longer in control. Another faction is in there pushing and yelling and taking over one big traditional base of the democrats. But more than that: there is anti-Semitism in this new faction!
We know of the quartet in the House of Representatives: Alexandria Occasio-Cortez, Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley and Rashiha Tlaib. They do not appreciate Israel, and they seem to care nothing about its welfare and survival.
Eliot Engle did. He had power, and he used it on Israel’s behalf.
The Jews, if they had started sooner, could have had a larger Jewish population and thus more clout; but they didn’t have enough babies! Then, when their babies grew to adulthood, they married outside the Jewish race. It’s been that way on both coasts—east and west. On the East Coast, so Mr. Sheinkopf said, 70 per cent of Jews marry Gentiles, and on the West Coast, 80 per cent on the East Coast.
* * * * * * * * * *
Only about 2400 Jews emigrated from America to Israel in 2018. But I believe that is soon going to change. We’ll see.
Nonetheless, it looks very much like American Jews are losing their influence here—at least politically—in the United States. Oh, it may take a while longer before their numbers go down precipitously and we view the ramifications of this.
But I believe that God, the Lord of nations and the Leader of His Chosen People, is wanting those people to go back home. And I think they will become more uncomfortable here, because anti-Semitism is getting worse and nowhere more so than on the university campuses. I intend to write of that menacing situation for young Jews very soon.
Irreligious though many of them are and sinful though they may be, still they are a witness through the Lord’s covenant with them and their survival in human history.
“They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ, who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen.” (Romans 9:4-5, ESV)
Great Archeological Finds: Coins, Seals, Fragments and Steles Unearthed in Israel
Archeological finds from Palestine, Mesopotamia and other countries in the Lavant have been made for a couple of centuries or more. But of late they have been coming thick and fast, one reason being that Israel now controls its own land—its own ground.
Let’s focus on the little stuff, like coins, seals and fragments of which there are tens of thousands being collected and preserved. They shed a lot of light on the bureaucracy and governments of ancient Israel, the nations surrounding it and the empires controlling it.
The sealings—bullae—from which the Hebrew word for stand (“bul”) is derived are small pieces of clay which in ancient times served a seals for letters and official documents. A letter which arrived with its seal broken was a sign that the letter had been opened.
These seals bear the names of people involved in transactions, notarizations, agreements and burial places. The senders used moist clay that would be imprinted with a seal.
Although the letters in Palestine themselves did not survive the fires of destruction from the Roman armies in 70 A. D., the seals that were made of clay did survive, thus attesting to the existence of the letters, the senders and receivers. Also, seals might be made to be pendants.
* * * * * * * * * * *
Just recently, Israel News Digest reported that “several dozen seals and seal impressions from the First Temple period (Solomon’s Temple which lasted until the time of Jeremiah and the Babylonian) have been found….where?...right in their capita of Jerusalem.
Many influential archeologists have insisted that Jerusalem in biblical times was simply a small town—perhaps nothing more than a chieftain’s center, not a buzzing capital of an Israelite kingdom. And….nowhere and at no time was there to be found the name of a “King David.” Stories about him were possibly just folktales.
So they said.
But there is an archeologist, heading up the work in “The City of David” in that south part of Jerusalem named Dr. Eilat Mazar, a woman, of the Hebrew Institute of Archeology. Her work has been extraordinarily productive. One important find is a fragment which appears to be part of a larger tablet.
SEAL. In that ancient Royal Quarter where Dr. Mazar works, there has been much digging activity where structures built by King Solomon are preserved. Seal impressions were found in the debris on jar handles and on a piece of clay. Pieces of clay called “bullae” were found with names on them—stamped on soft clay. One of them had the name of King Hezekiah on it, and close by, the name of Isaiah! The name for “prophet” is likely there too, except for one missing letter caused by damage. So, the probability is that the names of both Hezekiah and Isaiah are close together there in that damaged room. So meaningful is it given the fact that, according to scripture, there was no one closer to King Hezekiah than the prophet Isaiah, both names in English ending with “iah” signifying “the Lord.”
This amazing discovery reinforces interest in the crucial incident when the Assyrians came and threatened Jerusalem and the king at the very gates. Hezekiah appealed to Isaiah, Isaiah prayed, and the Lord delivered His people.
Hezekiah is described in II Kings 18:5 as the greatest: “He trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel, so that there was none like him among all the kings of Judah.” (ESV) He trusted in the Lord, and his closest confidant was Isaiah the prophet. Thank God for this archeological find as a remembrance of that great victory over the Assyrian host.
(This information taken from Biblical Archeology Review, March-June, 2018.)
ANOTHER SEAL. In the Wall Street Journal in October of 2015, there was the story of a 10-year-old Russian boy who made an “extraordinary discovery in Jerusalem while working as a volunteer in the Temple Mount Sifting Project. FOUND: a 3,000-year-old seal of engraved limestone about the size of a thimble, buried in hundreds of tons of earth and rock. It is dated from the time of King David and confirms the Jewish presence there more than a thousand years before the Muslim Dome of the Rock was constructed.
It had been illegally excavated from below the Temple Mount in the late 1990’s by the Muslim Waqf who has been given authority by the Israelis. But that illegal excavation turned to be a blessing for Israel. It dates from the era of David’s conquest of Jerusalem and the building of the first temple by Solomon. The Muslims, of course, contend that there is no historic Jewish connection with the Temple Mount. But there it was—a three-millennial old artifact that refutes that lie of Muslim officials.
STELE FRAGMENT IN THE NORTH
At Tel Dan (“Tel” is a mound where there is digging by archeologists)….at the foot of Mount Hermon a team of archeologists found a fantastic inscription from the 9th century B. C. that refers both to the “House of David” and to the “King of Israel” This is the first time that the very name of David has been discovered in any ancient inscription outside the Bible. The inscription refers both to the “House of David” and to the “King of Israel.” Therefore, it has to refer to THE David of the Bible. The “House of David” refers to the dynasty of the great King David. So awesome!
So now there is a seal with the name of David on it, and the evidence from all these seals lends credence to the idea of a major administrative capital of the Judean kingdom--JERUSALEM!
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.