Israel has officially announced a new coalition government, replacing Benjamin Netanyahu with his former ally turned bitter rival, Naftali Bennett, who will preside over a troubling and fragile partnership that represents eight diverse parties with deep ideological differences – to say the least. Netanyahu remains head of the Likud party and will hold the post of opposition leader.
In what many are touting as an alliance of necessity that puts an end to the two year voting impasse that previously failed to reach a required majority – one has to wonder, at what price will this coalition ultimately require in exchange for appeasing the purported voter fatigue that had settled upon the nation.
According to numerous media outlets covering this momentous parliamentary process, Netanyahu sat silently during the vote and once it became official, he stood up to leave the chamber, before turning around and shaking Bennett’s hand. A dejected Netanyahu, wearing a black medical mask, then sat down in the opposition leader’s chair.
There are several issues noteworthy on this historic day of vicissitude within the very framework of Israel’s existence. The alliance itself comes with a defined set of agreements, one of which is to block Netanyahu from ever again serving as Prime Minister, while setting in place the very possibility that Bennett himself could be replaced within the first three months if certain governmental issues are not resolved. It’s fair to say this could fast-track any number of potential autocrats into the role of Prime Minister before the ink has dried on today’s vote.
Something else is noticeable when looking around at the other newsworthy events of the day. While the change in leadership has garnered a decent share of headlines, in regards to the enormity of what it actually means, it would appear the world has hardly taken notice. It certainly brings to mind the words of Christ to his disciples in describing the last days.
“Now concerning that day and hour no one knows—neither the angels of heaven nor the Son—except the Father alone. As the days of Noah were, so the coming of the Son of Man will be. For in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah boarded the ark. They didn’t know until the flood came and swept them all away. This is the way the coming of the Son of Man will be.” Matthew 24: 36-39
But let us delve even deeper into the framework and membership of this disturbing alliance. Ra’am is given a deputy minister slot in the Prime Minister’s Office, and party chairman Mansour Abbas will receive a discretionary $1.5 billion fund for special projects on which he personally signs off. For those not familiar with this political party, Ra’am is a subsidiary of the Muslim Brotherhood, and as such, is a sister to Muslim Brotherhood subsidiary Hamas. You read that correctly, Hamas and Ra’am are both within the umbrella of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Just a month ago, while Hamas was launching thousands of rockets indiscriminately towards Israeli civilians, Ra’am’s leaders pulled out of coalition negotiations to protest Israeli efforts to stop these attacks and demanded that charges be dropped against Arab Israelis who burned down synagogues and attacked Jews. Yet today they have a recognized deputy minister’s seat with over a billion dollars to spend at their own discretion.
Ra’am’s Guiding Charter also demands creating a Palestinian-Arab state with Jerusalem as its capital along with the dismantling of all “settlements” (Jewish communities) – thus a call for the end of the Jewish state. Let’s not overlook The Society of the Muslim Brotherhood which helped establish both Hamas and Ra’am. The movement’s self-stated aim is the establishment of a state ruled by Sharia law–its most famous slogan worldwide being: “Islam is the solution.” This is the same organization that mourned the death of Omar Abdel-Rahman, aka “the Blind Shiek,” and sent their sincere condolences in honoring the notorious mastermind and convicted terrorist behind the 1993 World Trade Center bombings – the precursor to the 9/11 attacks that resulted in thousands upon thousands of innocent lives lost.
What we are witnessing in real time, right before our very eyes, is God’s plan falling into perfect order – just as he preordained. Many people feel that the world is spinning out of control – don’t believe that for a second. If you place your faith in mankind you could easily draw that conclusion. But take heart and be strong in faith, remember the comforting words that Jesus shared with his disciples,
“You are going to hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled, because these things must take place…” Matthew 24:6
In this same chapter of Matthew, Jesus went on to describe the days leading up to the end of times as birth pains. In the book of Jeremiah, the coming tribulation that would follow was called “The time of Jacob’s trouble.”
“How awful that day will be! There will be no other like it!” Jeremiah 30:7
Paul the Apostle further described and linked these times together when he wrote the following,
While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.” 1 Thessalonians 5:3
Believe me, it is no coincidence that these events are playing out at the very epicenter of Christ’s ministry and time on this earth. At one point as Jesus and his disciples were leaving the Temple Mount, they pointed out to Christ the beauty of Solomon’s Temple, to which Jesus replied,
“Do you see all these things? Truly I tell you, not one stone will be left here on another that will not be thrown down.” Matthew 24:2
An article in the Jerusalem Post contains a simple yet highly descriptive narrative on the events shaking Jerusalem and the surrounding regions, “Many cooks are stirring the pot.” They go on to try and sort through the agreements and fine print of this newly formed government trying to understand what is really happening. It is curious and telling as they openly ponder the possible linkages between the formation of this coalition and recent unrest and violence surrounding the Temple Mount. Yes, the very Temple Mount where Jesus and his disciples visited – and just as He prophesied, not one stone remained upon another.
All of this is further evidence that God is allowing leaders to have their day – and make no mistake – these so-called leaders bring the mannerisms and characteristics needed to fulfill the plans according to His purposes. As we’ve written in previous articles, Pontius Pilate was such a ruler as this, determined to appear strong but fearful of consequences that could damage his hold on rank and privilege. God needed just such a person to allow for His ultimate plan of salvation to be carried out. Jesus had to go to the cross on Calvary to give His life as a sacrifice for everyone. God allowed Pilate his role as Prefect over the region of Judea for this exact moment in time. A strong leader would have released an obviously innocent man – but Pilate, the exact image of many current day “leaders” – cowered at the prospect of standing up for right in the face of angry mobs, then theatrically washed his hands of the matter and gave Christ over to be killed.
God is allowing these “leaders” their moment to conspire together in forming this most untenable alliance and you can believe it when I say this will further serve the perfect Will of our Father. Radical elements taking hold within the government of Israel – to what end could this possibly serve? – consider the prophecy of Daniel. There will come a time when the antichrist will rise up and one of many significant moments of this tribulation reign will be a peace accord with Israel that will allow for the rebuilding of “Solomon’s Temple” – but this is a place that is prominent in the Bible and held sacred by Jews and Muslims. That is why I believe one alliance will lead to another – as we know from prophesy – the antichrist will bring together an alliance of peace with Israel. This next unholy of all alliances will see the temple restored in all it’s splendor, setting the stage for that final act of complete defiance before God. The antichrist will reveal himself for what he is – and will stand upon the alter of the temple and commit the “abomination of desolation” by declaring himself to be god and will demand the entire world to worship him.
“And the abomination of desolation will be on a wing of the temple until the decreed destruction is poured out on the desolator.” Daniel 9:27
“So when you see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place” let the reader understand, “then those in Judea must flee to the mountains.” Matthew 24: 15-16
Once again we remind all readers, God remains in control and His Will is playing out before our eyes. The stage is being set, time is precious and our days are short – believers have work to do and anyone not sure if they’re right with God – today is your day to believe.
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John Stephen Frey, Director and Senior Editor, Life Beyond Horizons Ministry