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God's Middle East peace plan

There’s no question God has a unique covenant with the people of Israel.

I know there are some who don’t believe it. They think it’s a fairy tale, a myth, an ancient legend.

There are others who, while they say they believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, mistakenly think He has somehow abrogated His eternal promises to Israel.

And there are still more who are unaware of specific covenants God has made with others – including with Israel’s neighbors in the Middle East, namely the Arabs.

While the leaders of this world search in vain for a peace plan for the turbulent Middle East, the good news is God already has one.

I write extensively about this peace plan in my book “The Restitution of All Things: Israel, Christians and the End of the Age,” but let me short-hand several components of it for you here.

It starts in Genesis – as most things do.

We all know the story of Abraham and Hagar. Abraham and his wife, Sarah, didn’t believe she could have children. She was aged. She hadn’t been able to conceive. Yet God promised they would have a son. Abraham and Sarah were people of great faith, but they decided to take matters into their own hands – to “help” God fulfill His promise to them.

They decided Abraham should father a child with Hagar, an Egyptian handmaiden to Sarah. That son was Ishmael. But, though he was not the son of promise, God made a covenant with Abraham in Genesis 17:20: “And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation.”

He made a similar covenant with Hagar in Genesis 21:18: “Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand; for I will make him a great nation.”

Ishmael became one of the fathers of the people we know today as Arabs. The question is whether they have yet become a great nation. As an Arab-American, I do not believe that promise has yet been fulfilled, any more than God’s covenant with Israel has been fully realized.

I believe the complete fulfillment will come at what Peter called in Acts 3 “the restitution of all things,” what Christians should recognize as Jesus’ return to Earth as King of Israel, where He will rule and reign from Jerusalem over the entire world.

But there is an overlooked specific promise to two great future Arab nations in Isaiah 19 that reveals how this will unfold. It comes in the last three verses of that chapter: “In that day shall there be a highway out of Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptians shall serve with the Assyrians. In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst of the land: Whom the Lord of hosts shall bless, saying, Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria the work of my hands, and Israel mine inheritance.”

Here God, speaking through Isaiah, refers to His Middle East peace plan in which he remarkably refers to Egypt as His blessed people and to Assyria as the work of His hands. We see these two great Arab nations plainly living in peace with Israel, His inheritance.

But that’s hardly the end of the story.

Because God has a peace plan for the entire world, one for all the nations, all the “gentiles.” It is revealed explicitly in the prophets – especially in Isaiah, Jeremiah and Malachi.

Many of these prophecies were reiterated by Jesus in the gospels – in Matthew 12:17-21 and Luke 2:32.

Anyway, there’s very good news ahead for those of us who long for peace in the Middle East and throughout the world. It will come. It’s promised by the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, the Creator of Heaven and Earth. There’s a happy-ever-after ending for the whole world – a promise not only of peace, but justice, mercy, blessing, righteousness and, indeed, an Edenic-style paradise on Earth for those who seek Him.

That’s a promise, too, to everyone – Arab, Jew, gentile alike: “If thou seek him, he will be found of thee” (1 Chronicles 28:9).

For more on this subject, get Joseph Farah’s “The Restitution of All Things: Israel, Christians and the End of the Age.”