In Part 1, Amir Tsarfati of Behold Israel Ministries joined us on a recent episode of Christ in Prophecy to help us find Jesus in the book of Joshua. Amir will now identify some of today’s existential threats to Israel’s existence.
Existential Threats to Israel
Nathan Jones: Big picture. Let’s leave Joshua’s time when the biggest threat that the Hebrew people had to deal with was conquering giants to today’s giants we read about in the news, such as Iran and Hezbollah. What do you think is the greatest threat to Israel’s sovereignty right now? Would you say a nuclear Iran, or the BDS Movement, or UN Sanctions?
Amir Tsarfati: I believe it’s a combination of what we are seeing right now. Basically, on one hand, the greatest ally of Israel, the superpower of the world — America — is slowly releasing its grip on the Middle East, and by doing so leaving Israel exposed. On the other hand, you can clearly see that as a result of the waning of America’s global influence has caused all of the bandits to become emboldened and to do whatever they want to do. Under the 45th President, they would not do what they are doing right now, and we all know why. So, my point is, we can see a convergence of so many consequences due to the identity of the person sitting in the Oval Office all the way up to what is going on in Iran.
Remember, Iran is not standing by itself against Israel. The Bible in Ezekiel 38-39 foretells a coalition of countries that will come against Israel, and Ezekiel speaks of Iran as one of the several.
We also must remember that there is a prophecy in Isaiah 17 and Jeremiah 49 about Damascus being destroyed in just one evening by Israel. That prophecy clearly has not yet been fulfilled.
I would also keep my eyes on Syria, for whatever goes on in Syria will eventually affect, I believe, the timing of the coalition led by Russia along with Turkey, Sudan, Libya, and Iran. Whatever happens will eventually turn into the Gog-Magog War that Israel by itself cannot possibly win. Only by the intervention of God in a very amazing and supernatural way will Israel survive such a massive attack.
A Huge Choice
Tim Moore: Returning to the book of Joshua once more, let’s look at the character of the man named Caleb. Along with Joshua, he was the other spy who was willing to be faithful to God’s leading when Moses first sent out the 12 spies. Even as an old man and at an age when he could have been resting on his laurels, he cried out, “Give me the high country!” Caleb was still eager to move forward and be faithful to what the Lord had called the whole nation to achieve.
Joshua also demonstrated his faithfulness throughout his life. His inspiring speech made at the end of his time of leadership challenged the people of Israel to choose whom they would serve “whether the gods which their fathers served beyond the River,” in other words, back in Egypt, “or the gods of the Amorites,” that being the people who lived there in Canaan. Joshua demonstrated his great faithfulness to God when he declared, “But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”
Amir Tsarfati: Yes, and this remains the same choice that is still before us all. Will we follow false gods, or will we serve the true and living God, the Lord Jesus Himself? That choice stands always before us.
In John 6, Jesus said some words that were too tough for some of the disciples to hear and so a lot of them left Him. Jesus turned to Peter and asked, “Do any of you want to leave me as well?” Peter replied, “Who will we go to? Who will we turn to? You have the words of eternal life.” And so, it’s not just a choice for the nation of Israel to make or the nations of the world, it’s even a choice that the disciples of Jesus had to make. When hardships come, you will have to make a choice for Jesus or not.
Jesus said the only way to eternal life was through Him (John 14:6; Acts 4:12). The progressive liberal agenda adds Jesus to false deities or replaces Jesus with other things such as works, and all of these falsehoods lead people to make a huge choice. Even for the average Christian right now, daily we have to ask ourselves if we will stick with the Lord. And, that should lead us to ask, “Where else can we go? Who can we go to but Jesus?” Because with Jesus dwell the words to eternal life.
What’s In a Name
Nathan Jones: Amir, one of the great benefits of your teachings is how you show your audience the Hebrew meanings of things. For instance, we English speakers use the letter “J” for Joshua. I know that the letter “J” wasn’t even used until the 1500s. Therefore, how did the ancient Hebrews pronounce the name Joshua? And, does the man Joshua point as a type to somebody else?
Amir Tsarfati: Correct. Joshua in Hebrew is Yehoshu’a. Yehoshu’a means “the Lord is my salvation.” Yeho derives from Yahweh, the name of God. The name points to the one who will be called Yeshua, who is our salvation. Hebrew is the only language in the world where the name of Jesus makes sense. Not that I’m saying you have to call Him by His Hebrew name, because I believe He understands every name that we have in different languages, as long as it’s an attempt to call Him and not mock Him.
When the angel commanded Mary, “You shall name Him Yeshua, for He will save his people,” only in Hebrew can the name and salvation be found together. They are the same — Yeshua is salvation. Yeshua is the Messiah’s name. That’s why when you read the New Testament in Hebrew you don’t have to wonder about the meaning because it is very simple — it’s just the same word.
Tim Moore: Joshua indeed points to Yeshua who came in the fullness of time and is coming back again. That’s why Joshua is one of my biblical heroes.
Nathan Jones: When it comes to Joshua, not only does his name foreshadow the coming Messiah, but he also served his people with strength and courage as a faithful, Christ-like example.
Tim Moore: The faith lesson of Joshua can be summed up in Joshua 24:15, “Choose for yourselves today whom you will serve… but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Neil Peart, perhaps one of the greatest rock and roll drummers who has ever lived, once said, “If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.” Joshua’s challenge even to us today is — “Choose whom you will serve.”
To quote the movie Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade — choose wisely! The choice you make regarding Jesus Christ has eternal ramifications. There is no other way to the Father and into Heaven than through faith in Jesus Christ. We pray that all will make this wise choice.