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Pastor Matthew Fanning

February 20, 2010

Psalm 83

Part 2

Why Do They Make Such a Tumult?


By:  Pastor Bill Randles

In our previous article, we looked at the question of the “who” of Psalm 83. Who are these nations who make a tumult against the people of God, taking counsel together to “cut them off from being a nation, that the nation of Israel be remembered no more”? The modern day names for this confederacy are those nations which surround the present day state of Israel - Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the Gaza Strip, Palestinians, and some from Iraq also “have helped the children of Lot”.

This is the situation we find ourselves in geopolitically today. Israel’s conflict with her immediate Arab, and largely Muslim, neighbors has successfully engulfed the whole world into a “tumult”. They have formed a very real confederacy, The Organization of Islamic States, and pooled their influence in world bodies such as the UN, as well as having successfully leveraged their considerable oil influence, in order to successfully isolate Israel, the only legitimate democracy in the Middle East.

Our purpose in this article is to explore the question, why? Why do they make such a “tumult”? How is it that they cannot simply make peace with Israel, accept them as a trading partner, and share in the “blooming of the desert” miracle that Israel has been experiencing for sixty plus years? Why hasn’t the ceding of land brought any peace?
The Psalmist, being a prophet, agrees with the other Hebrew prophets about the reasons for this hostility of Edom towards his brother Israel.  Ezekiel calls it “everlasting hatred” …

“Moreover the Word of the Lord came to me saying, Son of man, set your face against Mt Seir (Edom) and prophesy against it, saying to it, Thus says the Lord God: ‘Behold O mount Seir, I am against you, and make you a desolation and a waste; I shall lay your cities waste, and you shall be desolate. Then you shall know that I am the Lord. Because You have had an everlasting hatred and have shed the blood of the children of Israel by the power of the sword at the time of their calamity when their iniquity came to an end.” (Ezekiel 35:1-5)

This “everlasting hatred” is currently embodied in Islam but is older than Islam. It goes back to Ishmael, Abraham’s eldest son, who was disenfranchised of his inheritance (in his own and his mother Hagar’s mind) by the birth and election of Isaac. “In Isaac shall thy seed be called…”.  Far from a mere Sunday school lesson, this division between the child of the handmaid and the chosen seed of Abraham is directly relevant to at least a third of everyone now living!

Muslims (one out of seven people in the world) believe that Ishmael was the chosen seed of Abraham, and celebrate the feast of EID to commemorate their version of the Abraham story, the sacrifice of Ishmael. As Ishmael was supposedly disenfranchised by Sarai and Abraham, being evicted from Abraham’s tent, so the Arab Muslim world nurtures that same sense of resentful disenfranchisement, focusing their resentment on Jews and Christians.

The story of Esau and Jacob also feeds into the very real “everlasting hatred”.  God chose Jacob, not Esau to be the carrier of the Abrahamic blessing. But Isaac chose Esau, his favorite of the twins. Esau burned with rage when he perceived that Jacob had tricked Isaac into blessing him with Esau’s birthright! To this day Esau’s descendants seethe at the Jews, believing that they are cheating supplanters, usurping Edom’s birthright! Isaac did bless Esau with a very dubious blessing that is prophetic.

“Behold your dwelling shall be of the fertility of the land, and of the dew of heaven above. By your sword you shall live, and you shall serve your brother; And it will come to pass, when you become restless that you shall break his yoke from your neck.” (Gen 27:39-40)

Esau would indeed live off of the land. He would also be ‘blessed’ by having to ‘live by the sword’. Furthermore, by God’s election, proud Esau would have to serve his brother, Jacob. As Rebecca, Isaac’s wife found out, ”the elder would serve the younger…”(Genesis 25:23). Isaac prophesied also that in the last days Esau would become restless and throw off the yoke of his brother. Is this part of what we are seeing here?

For Ishmael, Esau and their seed, salvation would be dependent upon being ‘yoked’, taking on the religion of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The emergence of Islam, in the seventh century, amounted to a “shaking off” of the yoke of any Judeo Christianity ever accepted by the seed of Ishmael and Esau, ie: the Arab Middle East. Islam is the current custodian of the everlasting hatred of Israel, inflaming the passions of the already miserable masses of repressed, unemployed and frustrated of the so called ‘Arab street’.

Time and again at critical periods of Jewish history, the Edomites have handed their Jewish brothers over to be enslaved.  They cheered when the temples were destroyed, they aided and abetted those who enslaved, raped, and slaughtered the Jewish people.

“Because you have had an everlasting hatred and have shed the blood of the children of Israel by the power of the sword at the time of their calamity….therefore as I live says the Lord God, I will prepare you for blood, and blood shall pursue you since you have not hated blood, therefore blood shall pursue you…” (Ezekiel 35 :5-6)

I am reminded of the constant taunt that modern Edomites make to those affected by the Judeo Christian reverence for life, “You love life but we love death!”.  I am also reminded of a Time magazine cover a few years back, in which a so called “Palestinian” leans out of an upper floor window showing off his blood soaked hands to a raving, cheering mob of Edomites, having just participated in a double murder of two unfortunate newly immigrated Russian Jews who had made a wrong turn into a “Palestinian” section of the city.

“Therefore as I live saith the Lord God, I will do according to the envy which you have showed in your hatred against them; and I will make myself known among them when I judge you. Then you will know that I am the Lord. I have heard all your blasphemies which you have spoken against the mountains of Israel (Judea, the west bank), saying they are desolate; they are given to us to consume thus with your mouth you have boasted against Me and multiplied your words against Me, I have heard them.” (Ezekiel 35:11-13)

Right up to modern times, the children of Esau, Ishmael, and Lot - long since intermarried and dissolved into one another culturally and religiously by Islam - have sought to destroy the Jews. Hitler was an admirer of Islam, and modern Islam repays the adulation.

This comes to a head in the last days, this “everlasting hatred” has to be expressed, it seeks to be sated in the utter destruction of the Jewish state. Esau has a birthright that is 40 times the land area of that allotted to Israel, but is unsatisfied, craving Jacob’s birthright. This is what leads us to the next great disastrous Arab war with Israel.

“For violence against your brother Jacob, shame shall cover you, and you shall be cut off forever. In the day that you stood on the other side.  In the day that strangers carried captive his forces…and cast lots for Jerusalem - even you were as one of them. But you should not have gazed on the day of your brother, in the day of his captivity; nor should you have rejoiced over the children of Judah in the day of their destruction; nor should you have spoken proudly in the day of their distress…You should not have stood at the crossroads to cut off those among them who have escaped nor should you have delivered up those among you who remained in the day of distress.” (Obadiah 10-14)