ANCIENT HATREDS STILL SEETHING TODAY
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By Garner Ted Armstrong

 

      The hatred that seethes in the hearts of Islamic Arabs against Israel and the United States is neither political nor new. It is an ancient hatred inherited from generations of families who clashed, warred, licked their wounds and warred again over many centuries — long before the false religion of Islam swept the Arab world commencing with the sixth century after Christ.

 

Today, each bomb blast, each massacre, each murder triggers anguished outrage, mindless anger and hate among the combatants in Israel and the Mideast — each side has long since forgotten the original provocation. Today, as Israel kills terrorists, and as terrorists blow themselves and their victims to bits in suicide bomb attacks, each act triggers vows of violent revenge!

 

Arabs attack Israelis. The Israelis shoot back, kill or arrest Arabs, then destroy the homes of those responsible. Arabs vow revenge. The endless violence is not merely political. It is primarily RELIGIOUS and RACIAL! To understand the depth of this ongoing murderous rage, one must understand the ethnic and religious origins of the peoples in the Mideast. 

 

The Arabs know they are the descendants of Abraham through Hagar. They know their ancestor is Ishmael, Hagar’s son by Abraham; that Hagar was an Egyptian, and that Abraham’s wife, Sarai (Sarah), jealous of Hagar, cast out her maid with her newborn boy. Common names among Arabs are “Ibraim,” for Abraham, and “Ismail” for Ishmael. The striking prophecies concerning Ishmael; that he would become the father of many nations; that he would be a “wild man of the desert”; that he would “dwell in the face of [or in the presence of] his brethren (Isaac, Abraham’s later, legitimate son, his son Jacob; Israel and the twelve tribes which descended from him), and that there would be never ending trouble between Ishmael, Isaac and his descendants are fascinating to read. Only by understanding the ancient jealousies and rivalries between these two sons of Abraham can one come to understand the hatreds seething in millions of Arab’s breasts today.

 

The account is found in Genesis 16: “Now Sarai Abram's wife bare him no children: and she had an handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar. [Note: The Hebrew name Hagar means “flight”].

 

“And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the LORD hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai.

 

 “And Sarai Abram's wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.

 

“And he went in unto Hagar, and she conceived: and when she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes.

 

“And Sarai said unto Abram, My wrong be upon thee: I have given my maid into thy bosom; and when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her eyes: the LORD judge between me and thee.

 

“But Abram said unto Sarai, Behold, thy maid is in thy hand; do to her as it pleaseth thee. And when Sarai dealt hardly with her, she fled from her face” (Genesis 16:1-6).

 

It is implied that Hagar was more than a slave. She and Sarai may have been close, even confidants, even though the servant/mistress relationship was maintained. Obviously, they conspired together in the matter for Hagar was acquiescent, and not the victim of rape  — a Biblical account of human reason contrary to God’s law —  to bring about the world’s first example of surrogate parenthood.

 

Sarai’s humiliation is hard for modern women to understand. Then, it was shameful for a wife to be barren. Was her husband not interested? Was he impotent? Was she truly barren, or did she refuse him? The gossip and speculation which was sure to ensue caused humiliation for a barren wife, who recognized that the very purpose of her life was to bear her husband’s children; to become the mother of children and grandchildren, and generations to follow, so that the family name was never to be lost. That a woman would have a “career,” or go into “politics” was utterly unknown in that time.

 

Notice what happened after Sarai began persecuting Hagar, causing her to flee: “And the angel of the LORD found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur.

 

“And he said, Hagar, Sarai's maid, whence camest thou? and whither wilt thou go? And she said, I flee from the face of my mistress Sarai.

 

“And the angel [Hebrew: “messenger”] of the LORD said unto her, Return to thy mistress, and submit thyself under her hands.

 

“And the angel of the LORD said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude.

 

“And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; [Note: “Ishmael” means “God hears”] because the LORD hath heard thy affliction.

 

“And he will be a wild man [Literally: “A wild ass man” connoting the disposition of his character and those of his descendants; the disposition of a wild ass of the desert; hardy, independent, aloof, uncontrollable. The name did not connote a “wild jackass” or anything approaching it, but meant a man who would manage to survive in a wild, hard desert land] his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of [in the face of] all his brethren” (Genesis 16:7-12).

 

The implication of these prophecies is nowhere found any more concentrated than in the Bedouin Arabs of today. The Critical and Experimental Commentary by Jamaison, Faucett and Brown says: “dwell in the presence of his brethren,” — i.e., even in dwelling with his brethren would he maintain his characteristic hostility; and others...take the words in a geographical sense, i.e., “to the east — eastward,” “he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren, viz, in Arabia.” (Vol. 1, p. 150).

 

That prophecy has come to pass. The highest concentration of Arabs occurs in the Mideast, where they have always dwelt. Edom and Moab, the two illegitimate boys from an incestuous relationship between Abraham’s nephew, Lot, and his two daughters, were prophesied to “settle on their lees” and to remain in their ancient land. They are there today.

 

Ishmael lived in the Arabah, or the desert, just as the prophecy stated. When Abraham died, Ishmael was present with Isaac and the other descendants. “Then again Abraham took a wife, and her name was Keturah.

 

“And she bare him Zimran, and Jokshan, and Medan, and Midian [Moses’ wife was a Midianitess and therefore a descendant of Abraham], and Ishbak, and Shuah.

 

“And Jokshan begat Sheba, and Dedan. And the sons of Dedan were Asshurim, and Letushim, and Leummim.

 

“And the sons of Midian; Ephah, and Epher, and Hanoch, and Abidah, and Eldaah. All these were the children of Keturah.

 

“And Abraham gave all that he had unto Isaac.

 

“But unto the sons of the concubines, which Abraham had, Abraham gave gifts, and sent them away from Isaac his son, while he yet lived, eastward, unto the east country” (Genesis 25:1-6). Naturally, this aroused keen jealousies in the breasts of all nineteen of these sons and grandsons, who would have reasoned, “Abraham is our father, the same as Isaac! Why are we being treated any less?” Ishmael in particular would have been incensed, for he knew he was the “firstborn” and therefore deeply resented Isaac.

 

The account continues with the death of Abraham: “And these are the days of the years of Abraham's life which he lived, an hundred threescore and fifteen years.

 

“Then Abraham gave up the ghost [”breathed his last”, or expired], and died in a good old age, an old man, and full of years; and was gathered to his people.

 

“And his sons Isaac and Ishmael buried him in the cave of Machpelah, in the field of Ephron the son of Zohar the Hittite, which is before Mamre;

 

“The field which Abraham purchased of the sons of Heth: there was Abraham buried, and Sarah his wife.

 

“And it came to pass after the death of Abraham, that God blessed his son Isaac; and Isaac dwelt by the well Lahairoi. [Note: this is the same well which had succored Hagar and her infant child, Ishmael. The name means: “well of the life of vision,” or “well of life after seeing God.”] Another possible cause of deep resentment on Ishmael’s part, for he must have certainly viewed the location, an oasis in a harsh land, as a miraculous place; a place where his own life and that of his mother were spared by God.

 

“Now these are the generations of Ishmael, Abraham's son, whom Hagar the Egyptian, Sarah's handmaid, bare unto Abraham:

 

“And these are the names of the sons of Ishmael, by their names, according to their generations: the firstborn of Ishmael, Nebajoth; and Kedar, and Adbeel, and Mibsam,

 

“And Mishma, and Dumah, and Massa,

 

“Hadar, and Tema, Jetur, Naphish, and Kedemah:

 

“These are the sons of Ishmael, and these are their names, by their towns, and by their castles; twelve princes according to their nations” [Note: Kedar, along with other descendants of Ishmael, are mentioned as having traded with Tyre, the great city which existed for two thousand years] (Genesis 25:7-16).

 

Ezekiel prophesied: “Dedan was thy merchant in precious clothes for chariots.

 

Arabia, and all the princes of Kedar, they occupied with thee in lambs, and rams, and goats: in these were they thy merchants.

 

 “The merchants of Sheba and Raamah, they were thy merchants: they occupied in thy fairs with chief of all spices, and with all precious stones, and gold” (Ezekiel 27:20-22).

 

David mentions having been a fugitive for a time “in the tents of Kedar,” showing them to be an eastward, nomadic people (Psalms 120:1-7 says, “In my distress I cried unto the LORD [he was among those of Ishmael], and he heard me.

 

“Deliver my soul, O LORD, from lying lips, and from a deceitful tongue [The Ishmaelites of Kedar].

 

“What shall be given unto thee? or what shall be done unto thee, thou false tongue?

 

“Sharp arrows of the mighty, with coals of juniper.

 

Woe is me, that I sojourn in Mesech, that I dwell in the tents of Kedar!

 

“My soul hath long dwelt with him that hateth peace.

 

“I am for peace: but when I speak, they are for war.” This sounds for all the world like the struggle to find a “Mideast peace process” between Israel and the Arabs today.

 

Ishmael died at a very old age: “And these are the years of the life of Ishmael, an hundred and thirty and seven years: and he gave up the ghost [expired] and died; and was gathered unto his people.

 

“And they dwelt from Havilah unto Shur, that is before Egypt, as thou goest toward Assyria: and he died in the presence of all his brethren [A vast area, extending from Sinai and the Gaza strip to modern day Iraq and Kurdistan].”

 

Notice the intricacy of the prophecy of the 83rd Psalm, and how it applies today to Israel and the Ishmaelites with their allies: “Keep not thou silence, O God: hold not thy peace, and be not still, O God.

 

“For, lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head.

 

“They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones.

 

“They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance [this is precisely the aim of all Islam! It is the literal documented purpose of the PLO and the many terrorist organizations who want to literally exterminate the nation of Israel!].

 

“For they have consulted together with one consent: they are confederate against thee [Many “summits” among Islamic nations have taken place, talking of tactics in the ongoing struggle of Islam against the Jews]:

 

“The tabernacles of Edom, and the Ishmaelites; of Moab, and the Hagarenes [Notice the name “Hagar” thus identifying these people as descendants of Ishmael];

 

“Gebal, and Ammon, and Amalek; the Philistines [modern-day “Palestinians”]with the inhabitants of Tyre;

 

Assur also is joined with them: they have helped the children of Lot. Selah” (Psalms 83:1-8). Assur is modern-day GERMANY! The “Ammonites” were descendants of the incestuous children of Lot by his own daughters; Moab and Ammon. Ammon gave his name to the modern capital of Jordan, “Amman.”

 

Now, notice the prophecies against these peoples of the Middle East, and their final fate:

 

Concerning the Hashemites, which includes Arabs in several Middle eastern nations, particularly Jordan, God says, “Son of man, set thy face against the Ammonites, and prophesy against them;

 

 “And say unto the Ammonites, Hear the word of the Lord GOD; Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thou saidst, Aha, against my sanctuary, when it was profaned; and against the land of Israel, when it was desolate; and against the house of Judah, when they went into captivity;

 

“Behold, therefore I will deliver thee to the men of the east for a possession, and they shall set their palaces in thee, and make their dwellings in thee: they shall eat thy fruit, and they shall drink thy milk. [Compare with Daniel 11:40-45].

 

“And I will make Rabbah a stable for camels, and the Ammonites a couchingplace for flocks: and ye shall know that I am the LORD.

 

“For thus saith the Lord GOD; Because thou hast clapped thine hands, and stamped with the feet, and rejoiced in heart with all thy despite against the land of Israel;

 

“Behold, therefore I will stretch out mine hand upon thee, and will deliver thee for a spoil to the heathen; and I will cut thee off from the people, and I will cause thee to perish out of the countries: I will destroy thee; and thou shalt know that I am the LORD” (Ezekiel 25:1-7).

 

It is to be doubted that a single soul in Jordan, Iraq, or Saudi Arabia KNOWS THAT ELOHIM IS GOD; that their false concept of “God” is utterly untrue. The expression “and they shall know that I am 'The Eternal' [JHVH, or Jehovah, in COVENANT RELATIONSHIP WITH ISRAEL]” appears frequently in Ezekiel’s prophecies. The Islamic Arabs do NOT know that the One who became Jesus Christ in the flesh is the SAME personage of the Godhead who saved Hagar and Ishmael!

 

One has only to study the plain statements of John 1 and Hebrews 1 to understand this vital truth.

 

Now, notice the prophecy concerning Moab, Seir [the rocky hills and defiles of eastern Jordan and Turkey] and Edom: “Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because that Moab and Seir do say, Behold, the house of Judah is like unto all the heathen;

 

“Therefore, behold, I will open the side of Moab from the cities, from his cities which are on his frontiers, the glory of the country, Bethjeshimoth, Baalmeon, and Kiriathaim,

 

Unto the men of the east with the Ammonites, and will give them in possession, that the Ammonites may not be remembered among the nations.

 

“And I will execute judgments upon Moab; and they shall know that I am the LORD.

 

“Thus saith the Lord GOD; Because that Edom [Edom is ESAU; modern-day Turkey] hath dealt against the house of Judah by taking vengeance, and hath greatly offended, and revenged himself upon them;

 

“Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; I will also stretch out mine hand upon Edom, and will cut off man and beast from it; and I will make it desolate from Teman [Teman gave his name to the “Ottoman Turkish Empire.” One of the leading tribes of ancient Turkey was the “Temani”]; and they of Dedan shall fall by the sword.

 

“And I will lay my vengeance upon Edom by the hand of my people Israel: and they shall do in Edom according to mine anger and according to my fury; and they shall know my vengeance, saith the Lord GOD” (Ezekiel 25:7-14).

 

Now, notice the little-read, little-understood prophecy of Obadiah, which is set in the immediate aftermath of the Day of the Lord and the second coming of Christ: “The vision of Obadiah. Thus saith the Lord GOD concerning Edom [”Easu is EDOM: Genesis 36:19]; We have heard a rumour from the LORD, and an ambassador is sent among the heathen, Arise ye, and let us rise up against her in battle.

 

“Behold, I have made thee small among the heathen: thou art greatly despised.

 

 “The pride of thine heart hath deceived thee, thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock [Mt. “Seir” is mentioned many times in connection with Edom], whose habitation is high; that saith in his heart, Who shall bring me down to the ground?

 

“Though thou exalt thyself as the eagle, and though thou set thy nest among the stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith the LORD.

 

“If thieves came to thee, if robbers by night, (how art thou cut off!) would they not have stolen till they had enough? if the grapegatherers came to thee, would they not leave some grapes?

 

“How are the things of Esau searched out! how are his hidden things sought up!

 

All the men of thy confederacy [as you read in Psalms 83] have brought thee even to the border: the men that were at peace with thee have deceived thee, and prevailed against thee; they that eat thy bread have laid a wound under thee: there is none understanding in him.

 

“Shall I not in that day, saith the LORD, even destroy the wise men out of Edom, and understanding out of the mount of Esau?

 

“And thy mighty men, O Teman [A chief tribe; the name given to the “Ottoman Empire.” which was in league with the Kaiser in World War I, and was defeated by General Allenby of Britain], shall be dismayed, to the end that every one of the mount of Esau may be cut off by slaughter.

 

For thy violence against thy brother Jacob [whose name was changed to Israel] shame shall cover thee, and thou shalt be cut off for ever.

 

“In the day that thou stoodest on the other side, in the day that the strangers carried away captive his forces, and foreigners entered into his gates, and cast lots upon Jerusalem, even thou wast as one of them [Note: For centuries, Turkey has stood astride one of the most important “Sea Gates” of the world — the Bosporus/Dardanelles — between the Aegean and the Black Sea, thus providing Russia with its only warm water ports].

 

“But thou shouldest not have looked on the day of thy brother in the day that he became a stranger; neither shouldest thou have rejoiced over the children of Judah in the day of their destruction; neither shouldest thou have spoken proudly in the day of distress [speaking of the future captivity of Israel during the Great Tribulation - see Jeremiah 30:1-11].

 

“Thou shouldest not have entered into the gate of my people in the day of their calamity; yea, thou shouldest not have looked on their affliction in the day of their calamity, nor have laid hands on their substance in the day of their calamity;

 

“Neither shouldest thou have stood in the crossway, to cut off those of his that did escape; neither shouldest thou have delivered up those of his that did remain in the day of distress.

 

“For the day of the LORD is near upon all the heathen: as thou hast done, it shall be done unto thee: thy reward shall return upon thine own head.

 

“For as ye have drunk upon my holy mountain, so shall all the heathen drink continually, yea, they shall drink, and they shall swallow down, and they shall be as though they had not been.

 

“But upon mount Zion shall be deliverance [because the Deliverer has come!], and there shall be holiness; and the house of Jacob shall possess their possessions.

 

“And the house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame [Joseph means Ephraim and Manasseh!], and the house of Esau for stubble, and they shall kindle in them, and devour them; and there shall not be any remaining of the house of Esau; for the LORD hath spoken it.

 

 “And they of the south shall possess the mount of Esau; and they of the plain the Philistines: and they shall possess the fields of Ephraim, and the fields of Samaria: and Benjamin shall possess Gilead.

 

“And the captivity of this host of the children of Israel shall possess that of the Canaanites, even unto Zarephath; and the captivity of Jerusalem, which is in Sepharad, shall possess the cities of the south.

 

“And saviours [PLURAL! Resurrected saints will join Christ as He commences the SECOND HALF of His seven year ministry!] shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be the LORD'S” (Obadiah 1-21).

 

Judging from the many prophecies concerning the Middle East, one can depend on this! It is NOT UP TO THE UNITED STATES or BRITAIN to punish the treacherous sons of Abraham or brothers of Isaac! God Almighty will judge each nation according to its individual and national sins!

 

The final throes of the Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord will consist of God’s judgments on ALL THOSE NATIONS WHO FOUGHT AGAINST ISRAEL! But this means not only the modern nation of “Israel” in Palestine! It also means, and most specifically so, the United States of America and the United Kingdom of Britain! If you have not yet read my book, “Europe and America in Prophecy,” please call (903) 561-7070 for your free copy, or read it and download it from our website at “www.garnertedarmstrong.org/.” Also, to understand the origins of “Islam” and read about the life of Mohammad, read my booklet on “Mideast Strife, Will It Lead To Armageddon?

 

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