Should we care that the Palestinians are planning to ask the General Assembly for full membership into the United Nations as a recognized State? We should care…and here’s why:

1.  Even though it seems more equitable to have a One State solution (roughly 6 million Jews and 6 million Arabs/Palestinians living under one banner) that’s unlikely anytime in the foreseeable future – so a two state solution seems to be the next best option.  All sides have been calling for this for decades – including the international community. Why not now?

2.  The status quo is not helpful to anyone.  The Palestinians feel helpless and the Israelis feel fearful.  Treating each other like sovereign nations rather than a rogue people and an oppressive overseer, can only be a helpful start.  When informal votes have been held of the people on both sides, roughly 80% say they would prefer a two-state solution over what they have now.

3.  If you are a follower of Jesus or even a general believer in God, then surely love and compassion plays a big role in this discussion. What is the most loving way for both sides to be treated.  The commands of God are clear – love your neighbor, your enemy and the foreigner in your midst. In many ways, the call of Jesus is to be more loving towards the “other” than yourself.  This command works both ways of course.

4.  If Israel (via the US) blocks the proposal (which they will surely do), that exposes the double-standard.  I’m not saying it will be easy.  And there are elements among the Palestinians (although a very small percentage) who do NOT want peace at any price. They need to be isolated and dealt with.  (As there are the same small percentage of Israelis who also do not want peace).

5.  Finally, if your eschatology (end times theology) trumps the other clear commands in the scripture – to love neighbors and enemies – then please consider rethinking your eschatology.

In the end, we want peace for all sides so children can grow up with good education, with good health care and with the ability to travel and work and have a future (all things currently unavailable to most of the Palestinians).  And we want them to have access to these things, because it’s God’s heart to give good gifts to those he’s created.

Let’s pray for the peace of Jerusalem (which has Muslim, Jews and Christians within its borders).  And….let’s pray they meet the One and Only who can bring lasting peace.  The Prince.