The Times of Israel reports that Israeli officials downplayed efforts yesterday by the United States to reword portions of a previously-proposed hostage deal in an attempt to revive negotiations and push Hamas toward accepting the offer.  Hamas appeared to reject the possibility of renewing dialogue.

The U.S. proposal was essentially the same deal proposed and rejected by the parties on May 31, 2024; however, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, during today’s weekly cabinet meeting, reiterated his support for last month’s deal and blamed Hamas for the logjam.

Netanyahu said that “there is no change in Israel’s stance for the [hostage] release proposal endorsed by Biden.  Everyone knows a simple truth.  Hamas is the only obstacle to the release of our hostages.”  He also rejected calls for Israel to stop short of destroying Hamas to secure a deal resulting in the release of the remaining hostages.

The Times of Israel article may be read in full HERE.

My brothers and sisters, with Israel’s strategic assault on Rafah reportedly nearing the conclusion of intense military activity, and as most of the remaining Hamas brigades in Rafah have reportedly been dismantled, it seems odd – yet completely consistent – for the Biden administration to be seeking yet another agreement to assure that Israel does not obtain a complete victory over the terrorist group Hamas.

The unilateral and rushed decision by the United States to install a sea port to provide humanitarian aid to Palestinians in Gaza has failed, with recent reports indicating that the United States will soon be removing the pier because of high seas (weather) and the inability to safely distribute the current stockpile of humanitarian aid without Hamas circumventing the deliveries and seizing the aid.

Most could have predicted this outcome, but for some reason, the Biden administration has been doing all it can to:  1) seemingly poke the proverbial finger in Netanyahu’s eye; 2) retain a certain degree of support for the Palestinian cause in the United States for apparent political reasons; 3; take unilateral action, including negotiations with third-party nations which directly affect the ongoing war being fought by Israel; and 4) supply arms and ammunition to Israel in a manner preventing the United States from being accused of failing to sufficiently ‘defend’ Israel, but which would not assure a quick and complete ‘victory’ over Hamas – ending Hamas’ day-to-day political control over the lives of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

The United States (and all of the other free countries of the world) should never forget that Israel is our only true ally in the entire Middle East.  It is a free and democratically-functioning government, and a trusted NUCLEAR POWER.  It is the only homeland for the Jewish people in the entire world, yet it is surrounded by nations which desire nothing less than to see Israel and the Jewish people wiped from the face of the earth.

All that said, this writer is justifiably proud of the U.S. military and the assistance it has provided to Israel – and especially the technical prowess displayed during Iran’s drone and missile attack against Israel a few weeks ago.  The ability of our brave, fighting men and women, and the incredible, technologically-advanced weaponry is truly second to none!

Let’s continue to pray for God’s wisdom and favor to rest upon Israel and its leaders, and that the Holy Spirit would touch the hearts and minds of the Palestinian people, Hamas and Hezbollah supporters, and the leaders of Iran – such that the love of God would soften hearts, win souls to the kingdom of God, and bring an end to the murderous hostilities and the need for war.

The bible tells us to pray for our leaders:

1 Timothy 2:1-3 (ESV)
“First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.  This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior…”.

The bible also reminds us that there are times when war becomes necessary:

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (Amplified Bible)
A Time for Everything
“There is a season (a time appointed) for everything and a time for every delight and event or purpose under heaven—[a] time to be born and a time to die; [a] time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted.  A time to kill and a time to heal; [a] time to tear down and a time to build up.  A time to weep and a time to laugh; [a] time to mourn and a time to dance.  A time to throw away stones and a time to gather stones; [a] time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing.  A time to search and a time to give up as lost; [a] time to keep and a time to throw away.  A time to tear apart and a time to sew together; [a] time to keep silent and a time to speak.  A time to love and a time to hate; [a] time for war and a time for peace [emphasis mine].”

Praise Jesus forevermore!

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