NEW YORK – Israel is living in fear of what might come after the recent chemical weapon attacks in Syria, revealed Dr. Mitch Glaser, president of Chosen People Ministries, a Messianic Jewish organization, who said that lives will be changed at the upcoming "The People, the Land and the Future of Israel Conference" in New York in October.
"We don't know where those weapons are going, we just pray that those weapons don't end up on Israel's doorsteps," Glaser said in an interview with The Christian Post on Thursday.
"The People, the Land and the Future of Israel Conference," which is a three-day event running from October 3-5 at Calvary Baptist Church in New York, brings together notable speakers with insight into questions regarding Biblical prophecy and Israel, such as bestselling author Joel Rosenberg.
"There's never been an event like this in recent years in New York City. This is something that New Yorkers, particularly younger people, need to investigate, they need to understand. The Bible speaks to us to everything in life, the Bible has a lot to say," he added.
Glaser has served as president of Chosen People Ministries since 1997, and has been extensively involved in Jewish evangelism in several countries; including helping establish a congregation among Russian Jewish immigrants in New York, where the organization is based.
Much like the "Israel, The Church and the Middle East Crisis" conference in March 2012, Glaser spoke with CP at length about the purpose of the new conference, and shared his hopes that many students will decide to take advantage of the opportunity and hear what many of the leading experts in the field of Biblical prophecy and Israel have to say about the impact recent events have had in the region.
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"God chose the Jewish people. There's no doubt about that. He gave them a land and has a purpose for the Jewish people, which in Genesis 12:3 is to bless the world. So the story of the Bible is really the story of God developing his plan through the Jewish people for the world. The Bible is really written from a Jewish perspective. All the prophets were Jewish; all the writers of the Bible were Jewish," Glaser began.
"Whenever the Jewish prophets speak about the rest of the world, the Bible looks at the rest of the world from a Jewish perspective and how what is happening in the nations of the world impacts Israel and the Jewish people. I believe that watching Israel is a good idea for everybody because Israel is a bellwether for what God is doing in the world. If you want to know what's happening, look at Israel."
The Chosen Ministries president admitted that a lot of world leaders do not share that view, but argued that those who believe in the Bible should always consider Israel.
"The prophesies given by Isaiah, by Jeremiah, by Ezekiel are not mere human words, we believe those will be fulfilled," he added.
On the topic of recent world tragedies such as the chemical weapon attack in Syria in August that killed over 1,429 people, including more than 400 children, Glaser said that the prophecy that Damascus will be destroyed has not yet been fulfilled – that will only be so in the case of total destruction to the city. He insisted, however, that among the many questions that surround the region, the hope for believers should always be in Jesus.
"That hope is always in Jesus. It's not in human politicians, it's not in the U.N., it's not in potential agreements between the United States and Russia," Glaser reflected.
He noted that Chosen People Ministries has about 20 staff members on the ground in Israel, and on the possibility of an incoming war, Glaser said: "We're praying that they can get gas masks. Israel needs millions of Gas-masks."
He noted that elderly Russian-Jewish people will especially have a hard time in the case of an attack, and rushing to bomb shelters may not be possible for them.
"I think that Israel is really in fear. We need to pray for the peace of Jerusalem," Glaser reflected.
The world's focus is currently on Syria and the two-and-a-half year civil war there that has already killed over 100,000 people. The Chosen People Ministries president commented that it is hard to know for sure where the main danger is going to come from. He noted that some of the rebels fighting President Bashar al-Assad have strong ties with terrorist groups like Al Qaeda, while others are less conservative, and some are in the middle.
"When the Arab Spring was happening, it was clear to me that (it) was not going to be good for Israel. Because the Arab Spring, as much as it seemed like it was democratizing the many Arab countries, actually the Arab Spring was bringing in quite a fundamentalist Muslim group of people, and actually it wasn't that good for Israel."
Glaser did not want to comment on what the US should or should not do in Syria, but said he can speak from a Biblical sense and from the talks he has had with both Jewish and Arab people in the region.
"I can honestly say that when it comes to democracy in the Middle East, Israel is still the best bet. When we talk about America having an ally, there is no question in my mind that Israel gets it," he added.
"Biblical ethics would drive me to say that nations cannot just slaughter and murder their people, and I'm not making a comment about Syria, but as a general principle and rule of thumb, I believe that all nations should be accountable to one another, as they are ultimately accountable to God. And quite frankly, God is going to judge the nations of the world on how they treat their citizens."
As for whether Biblical prophecy is set and the actions of US and its allies can in any way change the destiny of the region, Glaser said that God's will can never be thwarted.
"I don't believe that God has A, B, or C wills, I believe that God has His will. And part of His will is in knowing that man will interact with his actions. I believe that sometimes when we pray for something, and God answers that prayer, we must understand that even our desire to pray was somehow superintended by God."
He added: "God is going to work his will out of the whole event."
As for Joel Rosenberg, an evangelical Christian and New York Times bestselling author who has written a number books with end times themes, and who has been an adviser to both American and Israeli leaders, the Chosen People Ministries said:
"Joel will bring all of his understanding of the Middle East, where he has lived on and off, and all of his understanding of Scripture and all of the personal conversations he's had with Israeli and Arab leaders."
Rosenberg is scheduled to speak at the closing celebration during the conference, where he will address the question "Will there ever be peace for Israel and her neighbors?"
"The People, the Land and the Future of Israel Conference" also features a number of speakers from leading Theological Seminaries and Christian Colleges, who Glaser said "have a real heart for young people."
Glaser concluded that students are especially encouraged to attend and learn from the conference:
"I think we want to give our younger generation of Christians the opportunity to think through what the Scriptures have to say about Israel and the Middle East. Because this is not going to become less of an issue over the next few years, it's only going to intensify."
Registration and further information about "he People, the Land and the Future of Israel Conference" is available on the Chosen People Ministries website.