From the Editor
At this time of terrible pain and fierce conflict in the
Middle East, I am really 'disturbed' by what I see. My father (Barry Smith),
and other end times commentators have spoken about these events for many years...I
grew up watching 'the signs' and waiting for these dreadful times. Like many
of you I have read the prophecies and wondered at the sheer immensity and
complexity of the Divine plan. Having visited Israel many times, and
making friends with Jews and Arabs alike -– I have hoped and prayed that it
wouldn't come to this...these are real people, with real lives, with fears and
insecurities which only they can know. Respectfully, unless you have been and
touched Israel, your view from the West will undoubtedly be inaccurate... It's
almost as immeasurable as trying to understand the Scriptures with no regard for
Middle Eastern culture and tradition -– particularly Jewish.
An inaccurate view will always lead to inaccurate conclusions
being drawn up. As onlookers it is easy to become one eyed in our view of the
situation, even callous. For many of the victims caught up in this
torment -– their only 'crime' is by virtue of birth.
We at The Omega Times are not anti Arab and pro Israel. We
try to speak only in support of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who called
Himself 'The God of Israel'. Because many of us draw our conclusions from
Bible prophecy, which we believe gives us the end well in advance of it actually
occurring, it may appear that we support only the Jewish people. This is not the
case. We pray for all people within Israel, that each one -– Jew and Arab
alike, will have the opportunity to enjoy a life of peace, found in relationship
with Jesus Christ... But even with the very best humanitarian intentions, the
underlying issue of GOD'S PLAN will not just dissolve away. The reality
is that these people live in the melting pot of Biblical history and prophecy
...God has very specific plans for these people!
Humanitarian issues will continue to be a problem in this
volatile cultural and religious conflict. We should not be so naïve as to think
that all Jews are righteous and seeking to please the God of Israel. I've
spoken to many Jewish soldiers who are far from God fearing! Many well meaning
Christians however miss the 'crux' of the Middle East issue. This
extraordinary situation was 'God's call'. Whether we like it or not, or
think it's fair or not, it is a Divine setup, culminating in the worst war the
world has known -– and the subsequent return of the Prince of Peace, who will
set up a 'righteous, and everlasting Kingdom'. Ezekiel 36 shows us a picture
of God breathing life into 'Israel' and redeeming 'Israel' - not for her
virtue BUT even in her lack of it. Please do not be fooled into a good guys and
bad guys mentality. God's judgement is 'over all people' Jew or Gentile.
All wrong doing will be dealt with at the appointed time. Atrocities committed
by people (who are made in the image of God) against other people (who are made
in the image of God) will be dealt with by the righteous judge.
So what is going on? We have a Divine decree, thousands of
years of bitter bloodshed, a cauldron of historical offences, resentment and
re-offence...but don't be sidetracked. At the root of it all is a spiritual
problem -– which requires a spiritual solution! We believers in God desperately
need EMPATHY, but we also need to agree with the Word of God, for we must pray
according to Scripture...whilst we look not at the things which are seen but the
things which are not seen.
More than ever, we need to be walking in the Spirit in
these days -– God is at work!
Andrew E Smith
Who are the Palestinians?
The people of Israel were scattered (by God according to
prophecy) throughout the world around 70 and 135 AD, leaving only a small
remnant in the Land... It was prophesied in Leviticus 26:33 "...your land
shall be desolate" and again in Ezekiel 6:2, 6, 8, 14. Before God began
breathing life back into the 'dry bones' (Israel as seen in Ezekiel 37), the
Promised Land had become desolate, baron, very sparsely populated and
swarming with deadly malaria-laden mosquitoes -– most inhospitable.
"Because of the desolation, returning Jewish people could
settle in most of the Holy Land without displacing anyone". Norman Archbold
author of 'The Mountains Of Israel'.
"For thousands of years Arabic people roamed over millions
of square miles in the Middle East and Africa -– unhindered by borders as we
know them today. After Jewish improvement of the land created jobs, Islamic
Arabs came into the Land for work. Many Moslims living in the Land before Israel
became a State were not natives of Palestine". Joan Peters' "From
The birthplaces of Muslims living in Jerusalem as recorded in
the 1931 Census: Albania, Algeria, Australia, Central America, Central Asiatic
Territories, Cyprus, Egypt, Far Eastern Asia, France, Greece, Hejaz-Nejd, Indian
Continent, Iraq, Morocco, Palestine, Persia, Sth America, Spain, Syria,
Transjordan, Tripolli, Tunis, Turkey, United Kingdom, USA, USSR, Yemen, Other
Arabian Territories, Other African Territories