For decades, the world has watched as the Middle East has descended into greater forms of chaos. From civil wars to radical Islamic terrorism, hundreds of thousands of lives have been lost. Across the region, no country has been left untouched by some degree of violence. Although we pray for peace, we have also tasked militaries and diplomats with finding solutions – to no avail. But what is God’s solution?
Despite what we see in the natural, God declares in Isaiah 19 that one day Egypt, Assyria, and Israel will come together in unity to worship the Lord our God. As we know, this prophecy has not yet been fulfilled. This region is currently 93% Muslim and seems to be unchanging, but as Paul said to the Romans “How are they to believe in Him of whom they have never heard?” (Romans 10:14) The Great Commission, given to us in Matthew 28:18-20, was given to ensure that prophecies such as Isaiah 19 would be fulfilled…by us! As those empowered by the Spirit of God, it is our responsibility to see the healing power of God touch whole regionslike the Middle East. In order to do this, we must go.
In Numbers 13, when the twelve spies returned from scouting out the promised land, only two that returned gave a good report. Despite the fact that God had promised this land as their inheritance, the physical reality of treacherous land and the existence of giants was enough to make them abandon their destiny. Only two of the twelve, Joshua and Caleb, came forth and declared the truth; that they were able to overcome the challenges and take the land because God was on their side. But because of their lack of faith, only two of 1.5 million Israelites actually made it into the promised land. Because they allowed circumstances to inform their reality, instead of the Word of God, they missed out on their inheritance.
There are many lessons to be learned from this story, but it has a striking resemblance to how we view the Middle East. We have allowed satan to dictate how we see this situation instead of God. We have allowed physical realities to surpass spiritual truth.
It is our job to be like Joshua and Caleb. When the rest of the world is seeing violence and destruction, we see through the eyes of God. In Isaiah 61, it is written that former devastations will be built up and ruined cities would be repaired. We are told that beauty will be given for ashes and that those who mourn in Zion will be comforted. Jesus fulfilled this prophecy and subsequently assigned it to us! His solution to these problems was simply us! I can imagine no better place to put this into action than in the Middle East.
It is beyond time for us to call “things that are not, as if they are.” That is true faith. If we see the Middle East as the rest of the world does, we are no different than the other ten spies who never saw the promised land. Let us not be “mere men,” but see in the spirit what God has declared as truth. Let us take a role in seeing the prophecies fulfilled! There is an entire region of approximately 317 million people who have not accepted Christ. It is our job and our duty to be the Joshuas and Calebs of our generation and rise up to declare the year of the Lord’s favor. Let us not rely on governments to do what has been tasked to us as the army of God.