Middle East Peace Really Will Happen

Posted on February 13, 2019

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By David Ettinger

Tenuous Peace Treaties
On March 26, 1979, millions watched their TVs in fascination as Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian President Anwar Sadat signed the Egypt-Israel Peace Treaty in Washington D.C.

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Considering the history of the two nations, this first official attempt at Jewish-Arab peace was a shocking but welcome development, the hope being that Israel’s immediate neighbors would follow. With the exception of Jordan in 1994, they haven’t. And though both peace agreements have held, they are tenuous as the Bible is clear that at the end of the age Israel will be abandoned (Jeremiah 12:7-9; Micah 5:3; Zechariah 14:2; Luke 13:34-35).

Yet, such political goodwill between Israel and Egypt and Jordan conjures in peace-seekers’ minds visions of permanent reconciliation in the Middle East. But is true peace in the Middle East possible? The answer is yes, but it will never occur in this era of human history.

Egypt the Primary Player
In determining when peace will permeate the Middle East, we must look to the Book of Isaiah. It is stunning that modern-day Egypt was the first to make peace with modern-day Israel considering the ancient history between them. As you recall from the Book of Exodus, Israel was enslaved in Egypt for 400 years before God freed the Hebrews. When Israel was “reborn” in 1948, Egypt was her fiercest enemy, making the peace treaty that much more astonishing.

Perhaps this is the reason Egypt is promised such a shining future in the Millennial Kingdom – the 1,000-year reign Christ will establish on Earth following this era of human history and preceding the establishment of the eternal state. Regarding Egypt’s place in the Kingdom:

In that day there will be an altar to the Lord in the heart of Egypt, and a monument to the Lord at its border. … So the Lord will make himself known to the Egyptians, and in that day they will acknowledge the Lord. They will worship with sacrifices and grain offerings; they will make vows to the Lord and keep them” (Isaiah 19:19, 21).

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The term “In that day” is the key to the time frame in question. “In that day” generally refers to one of two things: the time of God’s judgment at the end of this age, or the period of time just following that judgment, the Millennial Kingdom. In other words, though the majority of blissful promises made in the Old Testament concern Israel, there are enough left over for the other nations, and Egypt is one of them.

A Worshiping Nation
According to the passage, true worship of God will exist in Egypt, as indicated by the words “an altar to the Lord” (v. 19). Reason dictates that if there is an altar, there must be a sacrificial system to go along with it. Though beyond the scope of this article, suffice it to say that there will be such a system in Israel during the Millennial Kingdom (Ezekiel Chapters 40-43). That system will extend to Egypt. What will be the reason for this sacrificial system in Egypt? “… the Lord will make himself known to the Egyptians, and in that day they will acknowledge the Lord” (v. 21).

Egypt’s conversion will come at a price: “In that day the Egyptians will become like women. They will shudder with fear at the uplifted hand that the Lord Almighty raises against them” (v. 16). As a result, Egypt will cry out to the one true God for deliverance, and He will deliver (v. 22).

But Wait, There’s More!
Middle East peace in the Millennium Kingdom will not be restricted to Israel and Egypt:

In that day there will be a highway from Egypt to Assyria. The Assyrians will go to Egypt and the Egyptians to Assyria. The Egyptians and Assyrians will worship together. In that day Israel will be the third, along with Egypt and Assyria, a blessing on the earth (Isaiah 19:23-24).

Yes, Assyria. This is the same Assyria that boasted nefarious Nineveh as its capital, and later spread its tentacles to include barbaric Babylon. And, like Egypt, Assyria has been an ancient enemy of Israel. Assyria still is as it encompasses modern-day Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and Iran. And yet, during the Millennial Kingdom this region – along with Egypt – will be “a blessing on the earth.” Amazing!

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Considering what is happening in the Middle East today, the Isaiah passage seems but a dream which has no counterpart in reality. However, we must take God at His word. He has promised that a day is coming when Egypt-Israel-Assyria will form a triumvirate of lasting peace, the likes of which the world has never known. Of this “dream team” of peace, the Lord says: “Blessed be Egypt my people, Assyria my handiwork, and Israel my inheritance” (v. 25).

The Day is Coming
Such words are almost too staggering to believe, but we must. As the world continues its freefall to destruction, may all believers be heartened by this almost inconceivable fact: The region of the world that is now humanity’s greatest threat to peace will one day be the fountain from which all blessings flow. Middle East peace really will happen. So, believer, fight the good fight in Christ, His glorious day is coming!

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