President Trump did what no previous sitting US President has ever done. He acknowledged Jerusalem as Capital of Israel. What is a Christian response to the Jerusalem announcement?
Because this event is creating controversy world-wide, we have decided to interpret our current series on “Why is the Rapture Debate Important” and give a Christian response. Look for the final installment in that series next week.
The World Speaks Out
There was immediate push-back from all quarters of the globe. Let’s first look at some of the statements.
Because Defacto-Dictator Erdogan views himself as a spokesperson for Islam, Turkey was among the first to comment. Erdogan said this announcement was a “red-line” for Muslims. Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag called Trump’s statement, “madness” that will “plunge the region and the world into a fire with no end in sight.”
Because Jordan’s King Abdullah governs the Temple Mount, his thoughts are always interesting. He said the decision will “provoke Muslims and Christians alike.”
“There is no way that there can be talks with the Americans. The peace process is finished. They have already pre-empted the outcome,” claims Palestinian official Hanan Ashrawi.
And of course, the terrorist organization Hamas also had something to say. It declared three “days of national anger” and protests at U.S. embassies and consulates in the region.
Pope Francis also expressed “profound concern” at Trump’s move and said that he prayed “wisdom and caution will prevail so as to avoid adding new elements of tension in a world … already convoluted and marred by many cruel conflicts.”
Finally, the progressive movement within the USA also was vocal. Senator Bernie Sanders had this to say, “There’s a reason why all past US administrations have avoided making this move, and why leaders from all over the world, including a group of former Israeli ambassadors, have warned Trump against doing it: It would dramatically undermine the prospects for an Israeli–Palestinian peace agreement, and severely, perhaps irreparably, damage the United States’ ability to broker that peace,”
A Logical Response to the World’s Comments
Before we give our Christian response, a number of these outlandish comments by world and national leaders deserve an answer.
First, here is my response to Sen. Sanders.
The United States has actively been attempting to broker a peace agreement between the Islamic world and Israel for 40 years. Why isn’t there peace? Sir, you are a Senator, you should understand these things. There is no peace because the Islamic world doesn’t desire peace. As long as Israel controls land that at one time belonged to Islam, it is an affront to their god, Allah. The only peace agreement that will ever be negotiated will be a false peace.
Second, here is my response to the Palestinian official.
Sir, you claim that this move by the United States ends the peace process because it “pre-empts the outcome.” Do you believe that Israel would voluntarily surrender all of Jerusalem – was this ever seriously on the table? Nothing is pre-empted. East Jerusalem is still on the table as a Palestinian capital, just not all of Jerusalem.
Finally, here is my response to Defacto-Dictator Erdogan.
Sir, “I know where you dwell, where Satan’s throne is” (Rev. 2:13). The fire that you claim was lit is in your own heart.
A Christian Response to the Jerusalem Announcement
Christians are citizens and ambassadors for another Kingdom. We may be citizens of various nations, but our primary citizenship is in the New Jerusalem. So our role is to represent our Kingdom and our King, Jesus.
As such, our marching orders come from our King. No matter what our earthly opinions are, we represent the King. And our King has told us what will happen in the future:
First, a false covenant will be signed.
Therefore, hear the word of the Lord, O scoffers, Who rule this people who are in Jerusalem, Because you have said, “We have made a covenant with death, and wit Sheol we have made a pact.The overwhelming scourge will not reach us when it passes by, for we have made falsehood our refuge and we have concealed ourselves with deception.” (Isa. 28:14-15)
Then, of course, the covenant will be broken.
And he will make a firm covenant with the many for one week, but in the middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and on the wing of abominations will come one who makes desolate. (Dan. 9:27)
And Israel will be invaded.
I will gather all the nations against Jerusalem to battle, and the city will be captured, the houses plundered, the women ravished and half of the city exiled. (Zech. 14:2)
This is the order of events. And as far as those that choose to help divide the land, this is their fate:
Then I will enter into judgment with them there on behalf of My people and My inheritance, Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations; and they have divided up MY land. They have also cast lots for My people, traded a boy for a harlot and sold a girl for wine that they may drink. (Joel 3:2-3)
It is a frightening thing to fall into the hands of an angry God.
As far as this recognition of Jerusalem affecting the “peace” process, there will be no real peace until the King sits on his glorious throne and enters into judgment with the nations. There will be a short 3.5 year false peace, but no real peace until Jesus returns.
This is a great witness. When I’m asked about what I think about this act, this is what I plan to say. I encourage you to do the same: to share what Jesus says is going to happen. I am sure this will shock the secularists, but sharing God’s Word is an evangelistic witness and brings Glory to God.
Will this act by President Trump incite extra violence? Perhaps in the short term, it will. But wars and violence are determined until the King sits upon his throne in JERUSALEM and establishes his Kingdom. “Thy Kingdom come” is what we are to pray for after all. In Luke 21:8, Jesus said of the violence to come:
When you hear of wars and disturbances, do not be terrified; for these things must take place first.
These things (violence) must take place first. We cannot stop or control those controlled by the evil one.
Was it the Right Thing to Do?
Did President Trump do the right thing? I don’t know for sure. I think so. He who blesses Israel will be blessed. It was a big step for the USA to show support for Israel. He certainly didn’t derail a peace process that would have led to lasting peace anyway. There will be no lasting peace until Jesus sits on his throne in Jerusalem.
Might it lead to unnecessary violence? It might, and this gives me pause. However, it is the doers of the violence that are responsible, not the recognition of Jerusalem. Doing the right thing is always correct, even if it leads to difficult or even tragic outcomes.
Will This Hasten Jesus’s Return?
I don’t think any one can say with certainty if this event is a red herring, or a true step toward Jesus’s return. One thing I am certain of, however, is that we are one day closer to that glorious day than we were yesterday. Marantha.