Monthly Archives: April 2009

PA President Smells Weakness…But Where?

The Late Abba Eban, Photo by Dan Porges

The Late Abba Eban, Photo by Dan Porges

Because it is apropos I am again quoting the famous Jewish historian, Abba Eban with the same quote. He famously said, concerning the incredible tendency of our Arab cousins to consistently do the wrong thing at the wrong time in their struggle with modern Israel,“they never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity”.

Sending a Signal

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has decided that now is the time to get tough with Israel and perhaps try to influence/test the new US President for the Palestinian agenda. 

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas

Abbas throws down the political gauntlet by asserting the following peace process deal killers:

  • He rejects any call to recognize the legitimacy of Israel as a Jewish state.
  • He insists that Israel must be defined by the original boundaries established by the UN in 1948.
  • He also asserts that there must be a complete freeze on all settlement building and expansion in Judea and Samaria (what the Arabs call the West Bank) before he will even consider beginning any peace talks.

Of course this drew an angry response from Israel. Likud MK Ofer Akunis was quick to express the Israel’s frustration by saying, “This is more evidence that the Palestinians are not interested in true peace with Israel.” Who can blame Israel for feeling this way?

Interestingly, Abbas goes on to urge the US and its new President Barack Obama to push Prime Minister Netanyahu and his new government to accelerate the peace process.

Talk about Chutzpah!

Abbas just finished laying down at least two, maybe three demands that are absolute peace process deal killers as far as Israel is concerned and then he calls on the US to accelerate the peace process?

Why is PA President Abbas doing this now?

President Obama

President Obama

In my opinion it very well could be that he senses that President Obama is either weak, inexperienced, sympathetic to their cause or all three. While he could be wrongly reading Obama, he obviously believes that if he takes a hard line concerning even starting peace process, that he can extract more concessions from Israel.

What makes Abbas feel he can influence/manipulate Obama?

Abbas, I believe, has drawn an accurate conclusion that President Obama is a very ambitious man. He believes that Obama is anxious to make his mark on the world by accomplishing great things on a global scale.

Middle East Peace – the Biggest Trophy of All

Obama sees a comprehensive Middle East peace a great way to do something no other President or world leader has been able to accomplish up to now. Consequently, Abbas may feel that if he makes enough negative noise that Obama will pressure Israel that much more to make concessions in order to get the peace process started.

The stakes are high for Obama.

If  President Obama cannot succeed in getting the peace process started then he risks looking increasingly weak and impotent on the world stage and that just will not do for this President.

I believe that PA President Abbas senses this and is playing the Middle East card game with this supposition in mind.

Of course Abbas may be wrong and so could I…but this prophetic scenario I guarantee you.. is going to get very interesting!

Joel Chernoff

~The views contained in The Joel Chernoff Report are not necessarily views held by the MJAA~

Do I Hear the Voice of Truth in Zion?

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman

What a breath of fresh air! Finally…a clear voice for truth on behalf of Israel. My respect for the new government of Israel is growing every day. While the people of Israel know the newly appointed Israeli Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, most of us outside of Israel don’t know much about him.

What I do know is that the world community sees him more as an ultra-nationalist and extreme anti-Arab right winger. However, I was quite amazed at today’s news report on his recent interview with the Jerusalem Post.

I think I am becoming a new fan of FM Lieberman

While  SS Hilary Clinton from the Obama administration is busy warning Israel about this and that and telling Israel what they need to do to be successful in Obama’s new world, Lieberman is sending a marvelously clear and sensible counter message to President Obama and the international community…one I don’t believe they will like.

Here is a simple digest of a few of the truthful, clear and politically incorrect statements he has recently made.

Driving the International Secular/Liberal Elite Crazy

  • “The international community has to stop speaking in slogans if it really wants to help the new Israeli government work towards a solution to the Palestinian conflict and help bring stability to the Middle East. Slogans like land for peace and two-state solution are both over-simplistic and ignore the root causes of the ongoing conflict.”
  • This one I really love. It shows me he understands the true nature of the Middle East conflict: “The real reason for the deadlock with the Palestinians is not occupation, not settlements and not settlers. This conflict is really a very deep conflict…Today it’s more a religious conflict.”
  • The path forward lays in insuring security for Israel, an improved economy for the Palestinians and stability for both.
  • Concerning the right of return of Palestinian refugees from earlier wars…”It cannot be on the table. I’m not ready to even discuss the right of return of even one refugee.”
  • Though he made clear that a precondition for progress in the peace process is not based on Palestinian recognition of Israel he does state, “But somebody who really wants a solution, somebody who really desires a real peace and a real agreement, must realize that this would be impossible to achieve without recognizing Israel as a Jewish state.”

That’s right Mr. Lieberman…

islam …the bottom line is that this conflict is religious or spiritual at its root. It’s a confrontation between the God of Israel and the God of Islam. That’s why the conflict has zero chance of being resolved by political means.

Lieberman is nicely but clearly suggesting to the world that they have it all wrong because they do not know or care what the true basis of the conflict is.

Though Lieberman seems to understand the religious nature of the conflict…

… I wonder whether he, himself, understands that the resolution is rooted in a fundamental spiritual change within Israel’s Moslem Arab neighbors.

In any case Lieberman indicates that the new Israeli government will complete its own foreign policy review over the next two weeks and then make it public when President Obama and PM Netanyahu meets in Washington May 18.

Netanyahu & Obama

Netanyahu & Obama

Let us pray that our President does not pressure Israel to do things that can only hurt her security and that PM Netanyahu along with FM Lieberman have the fortitude to stand up to the most powerful man and country on planet earth.

Joel Chernoff

~The views contained in The Joel Chernoff Report are not necessarily views held by the MJAA~

Here We Go Again!

Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton

The news media reported today that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton “warned” Israel that if they don’t support peace negotiations with the Palestinians they risk losing Arab support for combating Iranian threats against Israel.

First of all, I was not aware that the Arab nations were supporting Israel in any way. In any case this is another warning to Israel from the Obama administration. Apparently the Obama administration believes that there is a good possibility that the Netanyahu government will NOT support the peace process in its current form. This is not what Secretary of State Clinton nor President Obama want to hear.

SS Clinton says that she is reserving judgment until her meeting with PM Netanyahu in Washington in May. Though she is reserving judgment she and the Obama administration are letting PM Netanyahu know well in advance what they expect Israel to do.

This is becoming very interesting…

I feel like saying to SS Clinton that I (General Secretary of the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America) am reserving judgment on her until I see how she handles herself with the Israeli PM. That’ll teach her!

The Party Line

Obama & Hillary

Obama & Hillary

There is no doubt that whatever she has to say to PM Netanyahu will be exactly what President Obama wants her to convey. She will not sway from the party line.

What is clear is that they are heavily invested in the futile and dangerous two state solution and don’t really want to hear or entertain any other scenarios. They simply have a different agenda than Israel (whose main agenda is to survive and not put themselves at senseless risk) and want Israel to play along at whatever the cost.

We’ll watch together. The future of our country rests on how we treat Israel. (Gen. 12:3)

Joel Chernoff

~The views contained in The Joel Chernoff Report are not necessarily views held by the MJAA~

Becoming Clearer – Obama on Collision Course with Israel

George Mitchell

George Mitchell

George Mitchell, President Obama’s specially appointed Middle East envoy, yesterday confirmed what I have previously alluded to… i.e. that the Obama administration is going to go well beyond President Bush in trying to set up a Palestinian state…regardless of what it may cost Israel in security.

It is slowly becoming evident that this US administration is on a collision course with the new Israeli government.

Listen to the chilling words of Obama’s representative George Mitchell

“[the] two-state solution is the only solution [to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.] This conflict has gone on for far too long, and the people of this region should no longer have to wait for the just peace that guarantees security for all.”

As reported by the Jerusalem Post, PM Netanyahu’s office expressed concern that if a Palestinian state is set up, Hamas could take over the West Bank, as it overran Gaza in 2007. The experience of Israel withdrawing from territory, only to have it controlled by Palestinian extremists “is not going to be repeated”.

After the Gaza fiasco…I am amazed that Mitchell or President Obama can promote the two-state solution with a straight face.

Although President Bush was the first ever President to openly advocate a two-state solution, he set up several caveats that were critical to Israel’s preservation and consequently made the deal impossible given the current

Hamas

Hamas

mind set of the Arab nations around Israel.

Caveats like: All terror attacks must cease, the Arab nations must recognize Israel’s right to exist etc. These were and are today conditions that our Arab cousins will not give to Israel…so they ended up being deal killers.

The truth

they simply don’t want peace. They want complete and utter victory. They want the total destruction of the Jewish state.

Mitchell, so far has excluded mentioning any of these critical conditions for peace with Israel. Without them the two-state solution is a non-starter for Israel.

You know what? I believe that if the Arab states would grant these caveats Israel would probably give them almost all of what they ask for.

However, everyone in Israel knows the ugly truth — it takes two to make peace and Israel has no peace partner.

Doomed to Failure

As I have previously asserted, any two state solution will find its way to the “scrap heap” of good or bad ideas because it moves against God’s prophetic agenda to re-gather Israel from the four corners of the globe, and restore her spiritually in preparation for the Messiah’s return.

 

Lastly and Prophetically…

God's Promised Borders

God's Promised Borders

If God’s word is true, the boundaries of Israel will have to expand to hold the millions more of our Jewish people that are destined and called to return to their God given homeland.

 “He that has ears to hear…”

Joel Chernoff

 

 

~The views contained in The Joel Chernoff Report are not necessarily views held by the MJAA~

What is the New Covenant Passover?

Example of a Haggadah

In Rabbinic and Messianic Judaism there are many and varied traditions that are associated with Passover. Most are not found in the Torah (first five books of the Bible). Most Jewish denominations, i.e. the Orthodox, Conservative and Reform branches of Rabbinic Judaism as well as Messianic Judaism,  have produced booklets that their constituents follow when celebrating the Passover. These booklets are called the Haggadah which literally means “the telling”.

The point being that the Passover instructions in the Scripture are quite simple. The elements include the slaughtering and eating of a flawless lamb, the eating of unleavened bread for seven days and the offering of various animal sacrifices at the Temple.

This left a lot of room for our Jewish people over the centuries to develop creative extra-Biblical traditions and ways to retell the Passover story that became a part of Passover celebrations. 

This brings me to the New Covenant Passover. Did you know…

…that the Christian Communion, that is celebrated at various times throughout the year, depending on what denomination and church you are associated with, is actually a Passover celebration. In other words the Last Supper was a Passover meal.

Da Vinci's "The Last Supper"

Da Vinci's "The Last Supper"

This of course is no accident. The Messiah Yeshua’s (Jesus) crucifixion and resurrection was closely associated with the feast of Passover.

New Messianic Traditions

In I Corinthians 11:17-33 the Messiah follows in the Jewish tradition of creative Passover storytelling by instituting a new wrinkle to Passover observance. At the last Passover supper with His disciples, within hours of His crucifixion, He broke the matzah (unleavened bread) that they were all eating and said, This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.

Then He took the cup of wine and said, This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”

What did He mean by this? 

Matzah

Matzah

 Unleavened bread had two important and prophetic meanings in the Scripture. First The Torah calls it the bread of affliction and symbolized Israel’s suffering in Egypt. But leaven is also a Biblical symbol for sin. So Yeshua was saying that when you celebrate the Passover and remember Israel’s deliverance from suffering in Egypt, remember my suffering for your sins. Of course the disciples did not fully realize at that moment what this meant until after His death and resurrection.

wine2Secondly, though the cup of wine was not a part of the Passover in the Exodus account, by the time of Yeshua (and even today) the cup(s) of wine were an established part of Passover observance. In the Scripture wine is often associated with blood and so Yeshua, after the meal was over, instructed His disciples that His blood represented a New Covenant.

So what is the New Covenant?

The New Covenant is the most important of all covenants between God and man. Just as the lamb’s blood in the Exodus account caused the angel of death to pass over Jewish homes and spare the firstborn in each household, so the covenant between God and man is that the Messiah’s shed blood covers the sins of an individual who accepts that atonement for their sins. Only then does God eternally forgive that person’s sins. They pass from eternal death to eternal life.

That’s why we faithfully observe the New Covenant Passover.

We must never forget the incredible and undeserved sacrifice God made by sending Ben Elohim (the Son of God) to take away the sin of the world.

Remember…and always be grateful.

Joel Chernoff

~The views contained in The Joel Chernoff Report are not necessarily views held by the MJAA~

 

Has God Hardened the Hearts of Modern Arab Pharoah’s?

One of the curious and interesting facts about the Exodus account of Israel’s supernatural deliverance from Egyptian oppression is that God says to Moses (Exodus 7:2-4),

You shall speak all that I command, you and your brother Aaron shall tell Pharaoh to let the people of Israel go out of this land. But I will harden Pharaoh’s heart and though I multiply my signs and wonders in the land of Egypt,  Pharaoh will not listen to you.” 

The question I ask myself is why would God find it necessary to harden Pharaoh’s heart? Is that really fair to Pharaoh? He could have accomplished the exodus of Israel from Egypt in perhaps one or two plagues…maybe three. I (as Pharaoh) may have been able to “tough it out” through the first two, water to blood and maybe frogs…but the third plague—-gnats-— would have sent me “over the edge” for sure.

The answers are more complex. 

  • In previous blogs I outlined how Israel’s deliverance was prophesied to Abraham over 400 years in advance. So the time for mercy was now passed and God’s wrath and judgment on Israel’s oppressor, Egypt, had arrived. Part of that judgment was that God would amplify the pride already resident in Egypt’s king/Pharaoh and turn it against him in judgment.
  • He was also judging the Egyptian people and indeed the entire country suffered greatly through each and every plague.
  • God is also jealous for His own name. The Egyptians worshiped a pantheon of gods. Every plague targeted one of their gods. In Ex. 7:5 God says… “the Egyptians shall know that I am the Lord.” Hardening Pharaoh’s heart had the effect of stiffening Pharaoh’s resistance against letting the Israelites go. He wanted everyone in Egypt to know that the God of Israel alone was God. All others were imposters.

Today I see a similar phenomena happening.

Arab leaders seem to act stubbornly and at times irrationally. They resist any notion of coming to a peace with Israel even if there is great benefit for their nation and even themselves. Abba Eban, a recently deceased and great Jewish historian, once put it this way…

“the Arabs never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity”

Yasir Arafat was a great example.

President Clinton had negotiated a seeming winning formula for peace, although at great price to Israel. He had convinced Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak to return well over 90% of the Judea and Samaria to Arafat and the PLO. Incredibly, Arafat turned it down much to the shock of both Barak and Clinton. This despite the fact that had he made the deal he was essentially being granted his own kingdom with him at the head. In addition it would have significantly weakened Israel’s security had there been a convenient “falling out” at some later date. For many reasons he just couldn’t make the deal.

An amazing opportunity missed…thank God!

There are many strategies our Arab brothers could pursue if they wanted to successfully wrest control of Israel from our people but somehow they seem to always do the thing that makes success impossible.

It seems that each and every Arab leader is suffering from a severe case of God inspired “hardness of heart”. I for one am very thankful for this condition.

One word of caution to Arab leaders around the Middle East…

Hardness of heart is a sure sign that God is preparing to pour out his judgment on Israel’s oppressors or enemies. Beware–God is jealous for His name. The God of Israel and the God of Islam cannot both be God and all agree that there is only one God.

Joel Chernoff

~The views contained in The Joel Chernoff Report are not necessarily views held by the MJAA~

Deliverance Has Its Own Timing: Lesson #2, Part 2

Lesson: Sometimes deliverance will to be delayed for reasons that have nothing to do with you directly.  Unbeknownst to you, God might be completing His agenda elsewhere so that He can answer your prayer today. What feels like a delay is actually God’s perfect timing.

Example: The Canaanites

When God called Abraham to move from Mesopotamia to the land of Canaan (modern day Israel) He promised to give Abraham and His seed after him Canaan as an inheritance. Thus the genesis of the phrase “promised land”.

Canaan & Mesopotamia

Canaan & Mesopotamia

So Abraham moved his family to Canaan in obedience to God. In the book of Genesis chapter 15 God gives him a vision. In the vision God reveals/prophesies to Abraham the following: (Genesis 15: 13, 14 and 16)

And God said to Abram, “Know for certain that your descendants will be strangers in a land that is not theirs, where they will be enslaved and oppressed four hundred years. But I will also judge the nation whom they will serve and afterward they will come out with many possessions…Then in the fourth generation they shall return here for the sin of the Amorite/Canaanite is not yet complete. “(NAS)

Remember…this prophecy was given over 100 years before Abraham’s son Jacob took his family to Egypt to avoid famine in Canaan.

But why 400 years? Why so long?

There are two very good reasons:

Modern Day Israel

Modern Day Israel

1. Though God had promised the land of Canaan to Abraham’s seed (Israel), Abraham’s family was not large enough to possess the land. It took 400 years for the people of Israel to grow to over 2 million people and thus be ready to possess the land God had promised them.

 2. God is fair, just and, fortunately for us, full of mercy. God gave the Canaanites 400 more years to repent of their sins and get right with Him. Only after the 400 years could Israel possess Canaan. In fact Israel was God’s hand of judgment for the Canaanites as later Babylon was God’s hand of judgment for Israel.

Today…

…we can see in hindsight how God was working over a long period of time to fulfill His promises to Israel and deliver them from the hands of their oppressors.

Even as I write this blog I am myself convicted to cultivate more patience when I pray. I need to learn over and over to trust God and believe that he will keep His promises in His perfect timing.

Chag Pesach (Happy Passover),

Joel Chernoff

~The views contained in The Joel Chernoff Report are not necessarily views held by the MJAA~