Feb 6, 2012
Adventures in Missing the Point: Iran
We’re missing the point on Iran.
The endless speculation about the Iranian nuclear threat is one of the most popular stories of our time. Obviously, it is an important one, as well.
When Mahmoud Ahmadinejad began to utter genocidal statements a few years ago—claiming that Iran intended to wipe Israel off the face of the earth—he should have been arrested.
But he shouldn’t have been feared.
Islam feeds off fear, in order to realize its dream of imposing Dar al-Islam across the world. Ahmadinejad actually believes his religion’s apocalyptic scenarios (it is quite ironic that people like Brian McLaren and Rick Warren mock the Bible’s predictive prophecy, but are mum on the Iranian eschatology).
Both Christian and secular sources—experts in weapons systems—have written volumes on Iran’s uranium capabilities, delivery systems of bombs, and generally where bunker-busting bombs would be dropped, in the event of an Israeli strike (we can rule American involvement in such a mission out; Leon Panetta says all options, including military, are on the table. John Bolton doesn’t believe the U.S. will participate in a strike. I’ll go with Bolton on this one).
But there is a larger issue here, I think. An issue that many would scoff at, yet I feel it is vital.
In Isaiah 54:17, we read:
“No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD.”
I’ve written about this before.
If the Bible is true, then Iran will not succeed in its genocidal aims regarding Israel.
It can’t happen.
Joel Rosenberg’s recent newsletter touted a lunch he had with former CIA Director Porter Goss. Among other things, Rosenberg learned the following from Goss:
“Notwithstanding the passionate and hateful rhetoric of Khamenei, Ahmadinejad, the Assembly of Experts and others, I assess they would probably use the nuclear capability for bargaining leverage rather than first strike, at least for the near future.”
Goss does not believe there will be war in 2012, between Iran and Israel. Many others, however, do. I am frankly dismayed by the rampant speculation coming from some Christians about the true threat from Iran. In other words, not only is fearmongering going on here, but we are missing a huge opportunity for evangelism.
As I like to say, what you read in the Bible is what you see in the real world.
In the context of the last days, the Lord has promised to preserve Israel. In the above Isaiah passage, he even says the Jews themselves will condemn those who speak ill of them.
There are myriad reasons people in the American Church have little knowledge of the Bible and these prophecies/promises. If possible, their knowledge of the Old Testament is even less than their knowledge of the New Testament. Thus, the great, ancient promises/prophecies carry little weight in our world today.
I know plenty of people who are afraid to travel to Israel because they’ve heard these ridiculous reports that there might be war in “April,” or “May or June,” etc.
Only God, Bibi Netanyhu, and a small group of advisors know if Israel will strike Iran, or be forced to strike Iran.
It could be that God will use the natural to thwart Iran, just as he did with Egypt. Perhaps Iran’s political and religious leadership will all drop dead. Maybe God will zap them and they’ll all become child-like. Or, it could be that some of the prognosticators are correct, and Israel will “take out” the Iranian nuke threat.
The truth is, since geopolitics is fluid in our world, overnight, Iran could become once again a friend of the West.
Bible prophecy teaching of the last 40 years is littered with embarrassing, failed predictions that didn’t come from the Bible. They came from the minds of men.
That has caused, in part, the great “falling away” of Bible prophecy teaching in our churches. Much of that blame can be laid at our feet, for speculating too much. We have lost opportunities to evangelize because of it. Data that I trust indicates that our young people today check out when it comes to prophecy teaching. We’ve cried wolf one too many times.
And our enemies/critics have a field day with that.
Let’s use this to our advantage now. The Iranian “threat,” I mean. Tell everyone you know that God’s promises to His people—individually and corporately—are sure and true. Certainly we should pray for the volatile Middle East, but we shouldn’t fear it.
Far from being afraid to travel to Israel, I run to it. Please, pilots…fly the plane faster. Let me stay longer. Let me embrace the land and its people. Lord, let me go more often. I should buy real estate there.
For their existence proves that our God exists. Tell our young people that. Teach them credible prophecy.
Israel is here to stay