Good news on Israel’s southern border today: In a strange but welcome twist, the government of Egypt stepped in last night and actually persuaded Hamas and other pro-Iran terror groups to cease their fire of rockets and mortars against Israel. Could the truce be broken? Yes. Could Hamas and the other terror groups change their mind? Yes. But for now, things are mostly quiet again. This is positive but surprising on several levels.
First, the new Egyptian government is run by President Mohamed Morsi, a Muslim Brotherhood leader closely allied with Hamas (which itself is a branch of the Egyptian Brotherhood).
Second, Morsi has called for jihad against Islam’s enemies, including Israel.
Third, on October 19th, Morsi was seen on Egyptian television saying “amen” at a sermon by a radical Egyptian cleric who prayed for Allah to drive the Jews out of Israel. “Oh Allah, deal with the Jews and their supporters,” the cleric prayed. “Oh Allah, disperse them, rend them asunder. Oh Allah, demonstrate your might and greatness upon them. Show us your ominipotence, oh Lord.”
Despite such views, Morsi and his team stepped in to pressure Hamas. Why did they do it? Humanly speaking, it’s not yet clear. The main reason, I believe, is because Christians here in the U.S. and all over the world began praying to the God of Israel to stop the rockets, and the One True God — the God of the Bible — heard and answered those prayers. Thanks so much to all of you who were praying. Please don’t let up. Let’s also be praying for Morsi and the Egyptian government. They are Radicals, but God has constrained them. There’s something going on behind the scenes, too. A few days ago, Morsi actually sent a warm, friendly letter to Israeli President Shimon Peres calling Peres a “great and good friend.” An Egyptian official then confirmed that the letter is authentic. It’s not clear why Morsi is reaching out to Peres, beyond the power of prayer. But let’s pray for Christ to change Morsi’s heart — to save him, and transform him, and his government, too. Is anything too hard for God?
Bottom line: Yes, the new Egyptian governnment is a Radical Muslim regime and a threat to the State of Israel. However, our God is greater. Let’s not be cynical. Let’s not throw up our hands in despair. Jesus Christ is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. He is sovereign over all things, all people, all leaders. So let’s keep praying for peace, even as we continue to prepare for the possibility of war. Let’s also be praying for the Christians inside Egypt to be brave and bold and courageous and to preach the Gospel and to teach the Word of God without hesitation. And let’s pray for many Egyptian Muslims to turn to faith in Jesus Christ.
Context: “A deadly flare-up in fighting between Israel and Gaza’s terrorist Hamas group subsided on Thursday after Egypt helped to restore calm ahead of a major Muslim holiday,” reports Israel Hayom. “‘The cease-fire was brought about because Hamas suffered serious blows and asked for a cease-fire,’ Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe (Bogie) Ya’alon told Israel Radio on Thursday. Weeks of simmering violence had intensified on Tuesday night, when rocket fire from Gaza drew Israeli airstrikes that killed two Palestinian terrorists. On Wednesday, terrorists in Gaza fired some 80 rockets and mortars at southern Israel, and Israeli aircraft struck Gaza four times. In all, four Palestinians, including three terrorists, were killed in the fighting and two foreign workers in Israel were critically wounded….Both sides confirmed Egyptian involvement in ending the fighting. Israeli defense official Amos Gilad told Army Radio on Thursday that Egyptian security forces had ‘a very impressive ability’ to convey to the terrorists that it was in their ‘supreme interest not to attack.'”
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