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Hebrew Prayer Books


The story and subsequent history of the seed of Isaac and Ishmael makes for fascinating reading, because it represents the longest running family feud in human history and it would be true to say that the very future of world peace is inextricably linked to it.

The story begins in Genesis when Abram and Sarah were childless and this led to Abram taking Hagar an Egyptian maidservant and having a son by her – Ishmael.  This was very much a natural birth, of the flesh and unbelief.

14 years later Abraham and Sarah had a son – Isaac. And he was born by faith supernaturally. Isaac was always going to be the son of promise and this caused resentment and jealousy on the part of Ishmael because after all he was actually Abraham's firstborn.

Some years later Esau was born and although he was the firstborn it was Jacob that received God's favour and so in response to being overlooked Esau married Mahalath Ishmael's daughter in an act of rebellion. He also married other women from the Canaanite, Hittite and Hivite peoples.
Another branch of Esau's family was Amalek (Esau's grandson) and the Amalekites were to become one of Israel's most spiteful enemies. These were the same Amalekites that Samuel told King Saul to destroy – but he failed to obey. Another descendant of the Amalekites was Haman the Agagite in the story of Esther.

It is not difficult to see how from one man Ishmael came a whole host of nations that were totally opposed to Israel.  Ps 83v1-8.  Although Israel's many enemies today are not called Ishmaelites, Edomites or Amalekites they do carry the same bitter and jealous spirit.

Interestingly the ancient Ishmaelites used a crescent shaped symbol - the very symbol used by Islam today which traces it's origins back to Ishmael.

Islam is truly a counterfeit religion claiming everything belonging to Judaism and Christianity.  They claim that Ishmael was offered by Abraham on Mt Moriah, they claim that Ishmael not Isaac was the son of promise. They also deny that Jesus was the son of God.

1 John 2:22-23
Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son. Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who ackno-wledges the Son has the Father also.

Zechariah 12 talks of the final battle over Jerusalem and he talks of God dealing with the 'surrounding nations' – i.e. biblical nations, all of which have always been very hostile to Israel.

All this is borne out by the fact that Islam is not really interested in Jericho, Hebron,
Bethlehem or the Gaza Strip – all given back in the cause of peace.  No, their main target is Jerusalem, the city of the great king, the city where God put his name forever.

The fact is Islam is divided into so many factions, much like Judaism and Christianity – however the only thing that unites them is a common hatred of Israel and this hatred will only intensify as the battle for the future unfolds.
Thank God that he is faithful to watch over his word to perform it and the seed of Isaac is set to triumph not because they deserve it but rather because their God is a covenant keeping God and so faithful to the promise he made to Abraham Isaac & Jacob.

God's promise to Israel is not based on their behaviour which has been disappointing to say the least.  Rather it is based on God's covenant with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob
which was called an everlasting covenant.  According to Ezekiel 36 God is not restoring Israel for Israel's sake but rather for his name's sake – for the sake of his good name and reputation based on his covenant with the three great patriarchs.

Mervyn Tilley – Chairman

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