goal of enforcing Security Council resolutions on Iraq.
So, linking "the implementation of resolutions about Israel and Palestine" to the military enforcement of resolutions about Iraq carries ominous implications, and, not surprisingly, the British statements drew strong criticism from the Israeli government.
Farther along in his prophetic writings, Zechariah foretells that the command will go forth to "gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle… Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations." (Zechariah 14:2-3 KJV) And the Christian New Testament features similar prophetic language, this time locating the actual battlefield at the plain of Megiddo, or Armageddon, the site of a massive defeat of Egyptian armies thousands of years earlier. The Apostle John referred to it this way in his inspired Apocalypse: "the spirits of devils…go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty. Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth… And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon." (Revelation 16:14-16 KJV)
Television news coverage in recent years has made all of us familiar with the sight of white-painted vehicles marked "UN" manned by peacekeeping forces in blue helmets. But the Apocalyptic vision of the Apostle John's Revelation uses less familiar language when describing in greater detail the forces God will use when he intervenes militarily. We speak of armies in terms of armored cavalry, tanks and heavy weaponry; God used the language of the day, borrowing terms from the cavalry John was familiar with:
"And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war. His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself. And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God. And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should
smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS. And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God; That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great. And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies, gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse, and against his army." (Revelation 19:11-19 KJV)
Is the world really moving toward such a head-on conflict with God? Israeli-Palestinian talks broke down in the year 2000, with neither side willing to yield on the status of Jerusalem. The violence and terror that followed hit Israel first, but then spread worldwide. Now, fear of terrorism grips the world. Much of the world also lives in fear of the American military response that has already been demonstrated first in Afghanistan and then in Iraq. World public opinion rages against these American actions and against the Israeli military moves in Gaza and the West Bank. As tensions rise between Muslim nations and the West, many point to the violence in and around Jerusalem as the root cause.
While radical Islamic leaders enlist followers to 'march on Jerusalem,' other diplomats seek to place Jerusalem under international control, policed by United Nations peacekeeping forces. The government of Israel has been following such talk, of course, and has long been resolved to hold onto Jerusalem at all costs.
The Jerusalem Post Internet Edition carried a story by Gil Hoffman on November 7, 2001, reporting, “The diplomatic plan that Foreign Minister Shimon Peres is formulating with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon is intended to prevent the international community from imposing its own plans on Israel, Sharon explained yesterday.” That same report added these