Category: Israel

New Evidence Revealed About Stone from Breastplate of Temple Priest Hidden in South Africa

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz November 6, 2019 , 1:50 pm

“The stones shall correspond [in number] to the names of the sons of Yisrael: twelve, corresponding to their names. They shall be engraved like seals, each with its name, for the twelve tribes.” Exodus 28:21 (The Israel Bible™)

The sardonyx stone. in the papyrus casket in which it was carried (Courtesy of owner)

The Breastplate from Solomon’s Temple

The story begins in 1189 when Croiz Arneet deTarn Auret left France to fight in the Crusades. Auret arrived in Jerusalem and, according to Auret family tradition, received a very special stone from “the High Priest” in gratitude for his part in freeing Jerusalem. The stone was allegedly taken from the חושן המשפט(Choshen HaMishpat, the High Priest’s breastplate).

You shall make a breastpiece of decision, worked into a design; make it in the style of the ephod: make it of gold, of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, and of fine twisted linen. Exodus 28:15

Twelve different precious stones were engraved with the names of the tribes and mounted on the breastplate. In addition to the 12 stones mounted on the breastplate were two sardonyx stones fixed in gold settings on the shoulders of the High Priest.  

And thou shalt put the two stones upon the shoulder-pieces of the ephod, to be stones of memorial for the children of Israel; and Aharon shall bear their names before Hashem upon his two shoulders for a memorial. Exodus 28:12

A Crusader Brings Home a Biblical Inheritance

The custodianship of the stone was passed on in the Auret family through the male line until the nineteenth century. That tradition was broken when Abraham Auret passed away in 1889, bequeathing the stone to his daughter, Christina Elizabeth.

After her marriage to William James Hurst, the stone left the Auret name, and has been passed on from mother to daughter ever since. Meticulously recorded family trees and genealogical reports corroborate the story. The stone was passed on as an inheritance and is presently owned by an elderly woman in South Africa, who wished to remain anonymous.

Verifying the Truth of the Stone

Approximately 25 years ago, she considered selling the stone. Towards that end, she needed to have experts verify the claim. Most of the relevant experts were in Israel and being unfamiliar with the country, she turned to a friend, Gary Fox, a devout Christian who had several years in Israel, to act as a liaison. Fox recently contacted Breaking Israel News to relate his experiences with the remarkable stone.

“I went to Johannesburg and taken into a bank vault,” Fox told Breaking Israel news,  describing the presence of armed guards stationed inside the vault for the viewing. “They did know how much it was worth but they were quite nervous about protecting it. It was very cloak and dagger. The family was very nervous.”

The Miracle of the Kohen’s Breastplate: Light 

At first, Fox thought the story was too fantastic to be true but he was fascinated by its appearance. He asked to touch the stone and the family reluctantly agreed.

The sardonyx stone, with inscription visible inside. (Courtesy of owner)

“I was skeptical,” Fox said. “But the moment I picked it up, I knew at that moment that I had something in my hands something that was supernatural.”

“As I touched it, it lit up,” Fox said. “I actually got a fright and jumped. One of the family members giggled and said, ‘Yes, the stone speaks.”

It is important to note that Fox’s claim is consistent with the characteristics of the stones of the breastplate as they are described in Jewish sources. The Talmud (Yoma 73a) describes how questions were put to the breastplate, and the stones would light up to spell out the answer. The book of Samuel lists the urim v’tummim (an undefined Hebrew term referring to the stones of the breastplate) as one of the three forms of divine communication: dreams, prophets, and the urim v’tummim.

And when Shaul inquired of Hashem, Hashem answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by Urim, nor by prophets. I Samuel 28:6

In the course of investigating this article, this reporter spoke to several of the people involved in proving the stone’s provenance. Fox’s experience was not unique. Several witnesses described the phenomenon of the stone lighting up as if from some inner source, though one witness described the stone turning dark. This seemed to be a highly personal experience.

“In my mind, I was thinking, ‘thank the lord it turned light’,” Fox said. “From a Christian point of view, I knew that the Lord had brought me into this for a purpose so I decided I would do whatever I needed to do. This stone traveled from Jerusalem, the City of God, through Europe, to finally end up in ‘the City of Gold; Johannesburg. This was the apt place to keep this gem, this incredible God thing, hidden until the time was right for it to be revealed.” 

It should be noted that Johannesburg is indeed referred to as the City of Gold due to the enormous gold deposits in the region. But the largest city in South Africa is intrinsically related to Jerusalem which was also dubbed ‘the City of Gold” in a famous Naomi Shemer song composed in 1967. Three weeks after the song was written, IDF troops entered Jerusalem, singing the song, unifying the city that was the heart of the Jewish people.

Expert Verification: Inexplicable Engravings, Miraculous Explanations

The owner of the stone asked Fox to travel to Israel in order to convince Dr. Joan Goodnick Westenholz, Chief Curator at the Bible Lands Museum in Jerusalem, to come to South Africa to examine the stone. Not only did the Bible Lands Museum host an impressive display of archaeological artifacts, many from the Biblical period, but it also contained the largest exhibit of ancient jewelry in the world.

While discussing the stone, Dr. Westenholz mentioned the tradition of the urim v’tummim and Fox interjected, “This stone speaks.” Dr. Westenholz was visibly intrigued by his statement. 

Fox succeeded in convincing Dr. Westenholz to travel to South Africa where she insisted on taking the stone to a laboratory for a full evaluation. Despite not being a religiously observant Jew, Dr. Westenholz was so impressed by seeing the sardonyx that she was concerned about transferring ritual impurity to the stone. She refused to touch it without gloves. In her notarized report, she observed what appeared to be two engravings under the surface of the stone, one of which she identified as a bet’. 

“What was remarkable was that the engravings were under the surface and followed the curvature of the stone,” Fox said, “They were geologically formed, appearing under the microscope like little bubbles formed into a perfect shape as the stone itself was formed.”

This was the point at which his artistic abilities came into play. Fox sketched the stone, including outlines of the two engravings. 

“They had no idea what the second engraving was,” Fox said. “After seeing my sketches, she suddenly realized that it was a wolf. She noted that the wolf corresponded to the blessing Jacob gave Benjamin.

Binyamin is a wolf that raveneth; in the morning he devoureth the prey, and at even he divideth the spoil. Genesis 49:27

After inspecting the stone under a microscope, Dr. Westnholtz determined that the tools used and the polish indicated the stone had been manufactured in the Middle East during the time the Children of Israel left Egypt.

The Story Continues

The owner of the stone was thrilled with the assessment but the process of verifying the stone continued for several more years. Though it is impossible to definitively determine the age of the stone, Dr. James Strange, a noted professor in religious studies and archaeology, who inspected the sardonyx in 2000 was perplexed at what he saw. 

“I was unaware that anyone in the late Middle Ages had the technology to cut a hemisphere in such a medium, so I tried to exhaust all other explanations,” he told Breaking Israel News in an interview in 2016.

Even more astounding than the cut of the stone was the inexplicable inscription inside the stone, visible through the clear surface: two letters in ancient Hebrew. Dr. Stone wrote in his appraisal of the gem, “There is no modern or ancient technology known to me by which an artisan could produce the inscription, as it is not cut into the surface of the stone.”

It is interesting to note that according to Jewish tradition, the stones of the breastplate were engraved by the shamir, a worm capable of cutting the hardest rock with absolute precision. The shamir was reputed to have existed in the time of Moses, as one of the ten wonders created on the eve of the first Sabbath, just before God finished creation.

Dr. Stone consulted with Ian Campbell, Director of the Independent Coloured Stones Laboratory in Johannesburg and a leading South African gemologist. Mr. Campbell, photomicrographed (photographing via a microscope) the stone, confirming it had not been cut open to make the inscription.

Professor M. Sharon from the University of Witwatersrand and an expert in ancient Hebrew, inspected the stones and noted the inscriptions in ancient Hebrew script of what he described as “the equivalent of our ‘B’ and ‘K’.” He identified the style of script, dating it to be from the year 1000 BCE, give or take 200-300 years.

“Due to the clarity of the letters and their fine definition it would be incredible if they are a coincidental natural formation in the stone,” he stated in his notarized report. “The lack of any apparent sign of interference with the surface makes the existence of the letters inside the stone a real enigma.”

Dr. Westenholz and Ian Campbell have since passed away, but Breaking Israel News was able to confirm that their statements and documentation were genuine. Campbell’s apprentice, Jeremy Rothon, confirmed the original appraisal and told Breaking Israel News that he was well aware of the stone’s heritage. It had made an enormous impression on Campbell and he had discussed it at length with his student.

The family’s initial nervousness proved to be justified. The stone was eventually verified by several experts who appraised its value at approximately $200 million. 

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10183

Horn of the Stone Altar Discovered at Shiloh

By Adam Eliyahu Berkowitz November 1, 2019 , 12:02 pm

And the height of the mizbayach hearth shall be 4 amot, with 4 horns projecting upward from the hearth: 4 amot. Ezekiel 43:15 (The Israel Bible™)

Excavations at the Biblical Tel Shiloh, a potential site of the Jewish Tabernacle. (Wikimedia Commons)

The archaeological dig at Shiloh in Samaria has produced yet another wonder straight out of the Bible: stone horns from the altar that once stood in front of the Tabernacle.

Archeologists and volunteers from the Associates for Biblical Research in Texas, a Christian organization that brings together Biblical research and archaeology to mutually advance both disciplines, led by Dr. Scott Stripling, provost at The Bible Seminary in Katy (Houston) Texas, made the discovery. Dr. Stripling served as a field supervisor of the Tall el-Hammam Excavation Project from 2005 to 2010 before moving on to lead the dig at Khirbet el-Maqatir from 2013 to 2017. Stripling moved his team ten miles north to Shiloh in 2017. 

In addition to its significant archaeological relevance, Shiloh is important for being mentioned in the Bible as being the site of the Jewish Tabernacle for 369 years. Dr. Stripling supports this claim though some archaeologists disagree. The claim is difficult to prove since the Tabernacle was a portable structure and had few elements that would remain intact to this day. 

Three altar horns were discovered during ABR’s excavations at Shiloh, Israel this season. Horn one: 38 cm long and 23.5 cm wide (15” x 9.25”). One of the few elements that would stand against the sands of time was the stone horn-shaped edge of an altar the researchers believe dates to the Iron Age (1200–586 BCE ). The horns were an essential part of the altar and used in the Temple service.

Slaughter the bull before Hashem, at the entrance of the Tent of Meeting, and take some of the bull’s blood and put it on the horns of the mizbayach with your finger; then pour out the rest of the blood at the base of the mizbayach. Exodus 29:11-12

The horns also the means of obtaining sanctuary, though this was not always effective. Yoav attempted to use this as a means of obtaining sanctuary from King Solomon but was struck down anyway by order of the king.

When the news reached Yoav, he fled to the Tent of Hashem and grasped the horns of the mizbayach—for Yoav had sided with Adoniyahu, though he had not sided with Avshalom… So Benaiah son of Yehoyada went up and struck him down. And he was buried at his home in the wilderness. I Kings 2:28-34

The horns were also described as an essential element of the soon-to-be Third Temple.

And the height of the mizbayach hearth shall be 4 amot, with 4 horns projecting upward from the hearth: 4 amot. Ezekiel 43:15

According to Biblical accounts, the Tabernacle stood in Shiloh until the First Temple was built in Jerusalem. The age of the find is significant as archeologists have discovered a change of cultures in the region, transitioning in the period between 1200 BCE – 1000 BCE from a Canaanite culture to the Tribes of Israel and the Philistines.

Last year, the team uncovered a ceramic pomegranate, a motif that has been found at other sites connected with the priests. Dr. Stripling believes the ceramic ornament fitted with hooks hung from the hen of the priestly garments as described in the Bible. 

On its hem make pomegranates of blue, purple, and crimson yarns, all around the hem, with bells of gold between them all around:a golden bell and a pomegranate, a golden bell and a pomegranate, all around the hem of the robe. Exodus 28:33-34

“The pomegranate is a sacred motif,” he said. “The only sites in Israel where we have found pomegranates like this one have been Levitical sites.”

They also discovered many pithoi, a Greek term for large clay containers commonly used among the civilizations that bordered the Mediterranean Sea in the Neolithic, the Bronze Age and the succeeding Iron Age for storing fluids and grains. In an interview with the Jerusalem Post, Dr. Stripling theorized that the pithoi were used to store the tithes that were brought to the tabernacle.

“The artifacts and materials we have found are consistent with the Tabernacle but the Tabernacle itself was made of animal skins,” Stripling explained. “Very little of the Tabernacle would remain for us to find.”

“I can tell with 100 percent certainty that there were Israelites in Shiloh because of the many indicators we have,” Dr. Stripling told Breaking Israel News. “The pottery shows that they were there when the Bible says they were there. I cannot yet say that I have 100 percent archaeological evidence the Jewish Tabernacle stood at Shiloh. We do find many reasons to seek confirmation of the Biblical text. There are indications, like the large amount of animal bones that are consistent with the Biblical sacrificial system, and the large east-west walls we are excavating.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10171

Israeli embassies on alert, air defenses adjusted in face of Iran threat

IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have warned in recent days of the increased threat posed by the Iran.

By Anna Ahronheim

October 29, 2019 21:29

Israel’s Air Force has adjusted its air defenses, and several Israeli embassies around the world have raised their alert level in light of increased tensions from Iran.

According to reports in Hebrew-language media, a series of adjustments were made to IAF air defense systems in light of the fear that Iran might try to carry out an attack using cruise missiles or suicide drones, similar to the October attack against Saudi Arabia.

IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Aviv Kochavi and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have warned in recent days of the increased threat posed by the Islamic Republic, which they say is getting bolder and more willing to respond to Israeli attacks on Iranian and Iranian-backed militias and infrastructure.

“Iran wants to develop precision-guided missiles that can hit any target in Israel within five to 10 meters: It’s doing it,” Netanyahu said Monday evening during an event at the Jewish Agency. “Iran wants to use Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen as bases to attack Israel with statistical missiles and precision-guided missiles. That is a great, great danger.”

At the event, United States Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin added that the US is planning more sanctions to place on Iran in its “maximum pressure campaign.”

While Iran has several rockets which could reach Israeli territory, including the Khoramshahr 2 with a range of up to 2,000 kilometers, it is unclear if they transferred such missiles to Yemen.

According to a report in the online magazine Breaking Defense, Israel has recently upgraded the Barak-8ER system with an extended range to protect against cruise missiles, a land-based configuration of the long-range surface-to-air missile (LRSAM) or the Barak-8 naval air defense system. Boaz Levy, Israel Aerospace Industries VP and general manager, was quoted in the report as saying that the upgraded version of the Barak-8ER system has enhanced anti-tactical ballistic missile capabilities and will be capable of protecting Israeli cities from cruise missiles.

Able to shoot down enemy aircraft at a range of 90 kilometers, the Barak-8ER is designed to defend against a myriad of short- to long-range airborne threats, such as incoming missiles, planes and drones at both low or high altitudes. In July, the Israeli military successfully tested the Barak-8, intercepting a small drone simulating an enemy aircraft.

The system integrates several advanced state-of-the-art systems, including a digital radar, a command and control system, tracking radar launchers, interceptors with advanced homing radio frequency (RF) seekers for targets with low radar cross sections and high maneuverability, data link and system-wide connectivity. It is also able to engage multiple targets simultaneously in severe saturation scenarios and can be operated in all types of weather.

In addition to the Barak-8ER, Israel has a comprehensive, protective umbrella able to counter the growing missile threats from its enemies, which includes the Iron Dome designed to shoot down short-range rockets; the Arrow (Arrow-2 and Arrow-3) system, which intercepts ballistic missiles outside of the Earth’s atmosphere; and the newly operational David’s Sling missile defense system, which is designed to intercept tactical ballistic missiles, medium- to long-range rockets, and cruise missiles fired at a range of between 40 km. to 300 km.

Israel continuously improves the technology behind the country’s anti-missile systems; all systems have gone through upgrades over the past few years.

Israel also has three Patriot system batteries and has used them against suspicious aerial vehicles, including shooting down drones and a Syrian Sukhoi fighter jet that infiltrated into Israel’s northern Golan Heights last year.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10168

EZEKIEL 39: Turkey And Russia Join Forces To Divide Up Northern Syria Between Themselves As Putin And Erdogan Become New Middle East Power Players

The deal came as the five-day pause in fighting brokered by the United States expired — but Turkey now says the deal means hostilities need not resume. The Russia-Turkey 10-point plan was succinct but will have wide-reaching ramifications for the region, as well as those embroiled in this latest Syrian drama. Syrian Kurds, America’s erstwhile allies, were left waiting to hear the news of their fate from the meeting. The deal means that from midday Wednesday, Kurdish fighters will have just over six days to withdraw to no more than 20 miles from almost the entire northeastern border.

by Geoffrey Grider October 23, 2019

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan spent hours poring over maps of Syria in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Tuesday, carving up Syrian territory into different geopolitical spheres of influence.

After President Trump so quickly pulled out troops from Northern Syria, Turkey jumped in faster than a squirrel in a bounce house filled with nuts. Within days, Turkey had launched a blistering campaign of attack that freed ISIS and decimated our former and never again allies the Kurd. When the smoke cleared from all that, what do we see but a grinning Erdogan and Putin putting their signatures on a deal giving Turkey and Russia joint control over Northern Syria. As Forrest Gump would say, it happened ‘just like that’. Indeed.

“And I will turn thee back, and leave but the sixth part of thee, and will cause thee to come up from the north parts, and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel:” Ezekiel 39:2 (KJV)

Of course, we are only interested in this because of the incredible ramifications it will have for Israel as they attempt to keep defending the Golan Heights that Trump said America recognized Israeli sovereignty over. Not any more. That proclamation has now become null and void because the United States is no longer there to enforce it. Now Russia and Turkey have both moved a giant step closer to their real target in the Middle East, Jerusalem!

This is how Putin and Erdogan have redrawn northeastern Syria

FROM NBC NEWS: The pair agreed to a deal designed to keep Kurdish forces away from the Syria-Turkey border, enforced by joint Russian and Turkish patrols starting next week. U.S. troops are continuing their journey out of Syria, headed for western Iraq.

The deal came as the five-day pause in fighting brokered by the United States expired — but Turkey now says the deal means hostilities need not resume. The Russia-Turkey 10-point plan was succinct but will have wide-reaching ramifications for the region, as well as those embroiled in this latest Syrian drama.

Syrian Kurds, America’s erstwhile allies, were left waiting to hear the news of their fate from the meeting. The deal means that from midday Wednesday, Kurdish fighters will have just over six days to withdraw to no more than 20 miles from almost the entire northeastern border.

Ankara will keep sole control of the central section of the border, between the Syrian border towns of Tal Abyad and Ras al-Ayn, the area from which Kurdish fighters were forced to withdraw over the past five days under the U.S.-Turkey deal.

When the new deadline elapses Oct. 29, joint Russian-Turkish troops will patrol a 6-mile-deep area to the west and east of the section of the border captured by Turkey during its invasion.

It’s another blow for Syrian Kurds who want greater self-rule and who had largely managed to achieve this during Syria’s eight-year civil war. Before the Oct. 9 invasion, the Kurds controlled about a quarter of the country — an area rich in oil, water and agriculture. It represented the largest chunk of Syria not controlled by the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.

But under Moscow’s and Ankara’s plan, the Kurdish fighters will have to withdraw even further out of the territory that they previously held, dealing a heavy blow to their dreams of regional autonomy and independence.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10154

Turkey Breaks Fragile Ceasefire Agreement With United States In New Attacks On Kurds In Northern Syria As Putin Steps Up Control Of Region

“Putin is the New King of Syria,” ran the op-ed headline in Thursday’s Wall Street Journal. If Putin is king of Syria, it is because he was willing to pay the price in blood and treasure to keep his Russia’s toehold on the Med and save his ally Bashar Assad, who would have gone under without him. Now let’s see how Putin likes his prize.

by Geoffrey Grider October 19, 2019

Syrian forces, most probably supported by Turkey, were seen attacking several key locations still held by Kurdish forces, violating the US-led ceasefire agreement in the region.

Once again, a military move by President Trump that was panned initially in carefully engineered outrage is turning out to be not so bad after all. Yes, Trump has ordered US troops out of Syria, fulfilling yet another one of his 2016 campaign promises, and Russian leader Vladimir Putin has stepped in to take control. But what exactly is he taking control of, and what order can a weakened Russia possibly make out of all this chaos?

“Therefore, thou son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: And I will turn thee back, and leave but the sixth part of thee, and will cause thee to come up from the north parts, and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel: And I will smite thy bow out of thy left hand, and will cause thine arrows to fall out of thy right hand.” Ezekiel 39:1-3 (KJV)

Russia has a marginal economy at best, and a military that despite their endless bluster, is actually subpar when compared to most other nations and a joke when compared to the might of the United States. A long sustained control of the quagmire in Syria will not increase Russia’s power but will actually weaken it. Russia does not have the money to do much of anything in Syria and Putin knows it. Besides, all this posturing is merely a dress rehearsal for the ‘real thing’ which comes during the last half of the time of Jacob’s trouble.

Turkey Breaks Ceasefire Agreement With US, Attacks Northern Syria As Putin ‘takes over’

FROM THE JPOST: These forces crossed the border from Turkey into northern Syria, according to the report, and are moving towards Ras al-Ain, a village in which the fighting hasn’t ceased since Friday, even after the ceasefire was signed.

Reuters, however, reports that the “fragile” ceasefire is holding along the Syrian border, though Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is ready to continue the Syria offensive if the truce deal that was agreed upon is not implemented.

“We paused the operation for five days,” said Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar. “In this time, the terrorists will withdraw from the safe zone, their weapons will be collected and position destroyed. If this doesn’t happen, we will continue the operation.”

Erdogan also threatened the Kurdish forces in northern Syria, saying that they will “crush the heads” of the fighters if they do not withdraw in the 120-hour period designated by the ceasefire. He also said that he would speak about the deployment of Syrian government forces in a planned “safe zone” in northern Syria while speaking with Russian President Vladimir Putin next week

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10144

The days of the Ottoman Empire are over’

After years of inaction, new Foreign Ministry plan aims to stop Ankara’s efforts to undermine Israeli sovereignty in east Jerusalem. Among proposed steps: outlawing Muslim Brotherhood, limiting activities of Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency, whose stated objective is “preventing the Judaization of Jerusalem.”

by  Ariel Kahana , Israel Hayom Staff

Last modified: 2019-10-07 09:46

Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz has ordered his office to draw up plans to stop the Turkish government’s efforts to undermine Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem and protect Jordan’s special status as guardian of Muslim holy sites in the city.

Katz intends to present the plan to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu soon, so he can authorize its implementation. Due to the sensitivity of the plan, whose implementation will almost certainly lead to a direct confrontation with Ankara, it is also expected to be raised for discussion by the Diplomatic-Security Cabinet. According to ministry officials, as the plan pertains to security matters, there is nothing preventing it from being implemented by a transition government.

The issue of Turkey’s influence on members of Jerusalem’s Arab population has weighed on security and diplomatic officials’ minds for years. As Israel Hayom has previously reported, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has been buying influence over sites and prominent figures in east Jerusalem for years. Nevertheless, Jerusalem has not made any effort to challenge these efforts up until now.

The Foreign Ministry’s plan would see the Muslim Brotherhood, which has close ties to Erdoğan’s Justice and Development party, deemed an illegal association in Israel. Further ministry recommendations for thwarting Ankara’s efforts include restricting the activities of the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency, or TIKA, in Israel. The organization, whose stated objective is “preventing the Judaization of Jerusalem,” spends some $12 million annually on activities aimed at undermining Israeli sovereignty in east Jerusalem. It should be noted that these activities are personally managed by Erdoğan.

The plan’s architects propose obligating TIKA to coordinate its activities with Israel in advance and preventing the association from act unequivocally in Jerusalem. In addition, they propose Jerusalem not renew the head of TIKA in Jerusalem’s, a move that would strip the organization head of his diplomatic status in Israel and render his presence in Israel illegal.

Additional steps would include restricting communications between members of the Islamic Waqf.

In preliminary discussions, Katz said, “We will not accept a situation in which the Turkish government headed by Erdoğan acts to create centers of unrest and incitement in Jerusalem through funding and holding radical Islamic activities [inspired by] the Muslim Brotherhood and under the auspices and disguise of religious, social, cultural, and educational activities.”

Katz emphasized, “We will take all the [necessary] steps to pull the rug out from under the diplomatic basis for Turkey’s activities in east Jerusalem in order to bolster Israeli sovereignty in all parts of the city. The days of the Ottoman Empire are over.”

According to Katz, “Erdoğan’s declarations that Jerusalem belongs to all of the Muslims are unfounded and baseless. Israel is the sovereign in Jerusalem, through protecting full freedom of worship to members of all religions. We will not allow any element to harm this sovereignty.

“Beyond that,” Katz noted, “in accordance with the peace agreement between Israel and Jordan, the Jordanians have special status as far as concerns the holy places to Islam in Jerusalem, and we will not allow Erdoğan to harm Jordan’s status, as is happening today.”

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10132

Biblical Archaeologists In Israel Make Stunning Discovery Of 5,000 Year-Old City Of Ein Esur, Largest Ancient Settlement Ever Found in Region

“The study of this site at Ein Esur will change forever what we know about the emergence and rise of urbanization in the land of Israel and in the whole region,” said Paz. “And it means that what we know now will change what is written today in the traditional books when people read about the archaeology of Israel.” The ancient settlement contained public and private buildings and areas, streets and alleys and was surrounded by a fortification wall.

by Geoffrey Grider October 7, 2019

A massive 5,000-year-old metropolis Ein Esur that housed some 6,000 residents has been uncovered alongside Israel’s newest city, Harish, during new roadworks.

The world of biblical archaeology in the Middle East is buzzing right now with the news of the discovery of the largest ancient settlement ever found in the region of Israel and trans-Jordan, a city called Ein Esur that was so massive in its day that archaeologists are calling it ‘Israel’s NYC’, and only partially tongue in cheek. This scope of this find is so large they really aren’t even sure exactly what they’ve found. Ein Esur dates back to the time of the very first pharaoh in Egypt, that’s how old this city is. Amazing.

“Hast thou not heard long ago how I have done it, and of ancient times that I have formed it? now have I brought it to pass, that thou shouldest be to lay waste fenced cities into ruinous heaps.” 2 Kings 19:25 (KJV)

The article below goes on to say that they have also discovered settlements that are ‘7,000 years old’, which would be a pretty good trick considering the Bible only records a history of humans dating back around 6,000 years. Needless to say, we will be watching the developments of Ein Esur very closely and will report to you as soon as new information becomes available. But I will make one prediction right now. When they dig a little deeper, they will find artifacts that will establish a direct connection with matching accounts contained in the Holy Bible. That’s a virtual guarantee.

‘Israel’s ancient NYC’: 5,000-year-old Canaanite megalopolis Ein Esur may rewrite history

FROM TIMES OF ISRAEL: The 160-acre (over 650 dunam) city is the largest Early Bronze Age settlement excavated in Israel, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced on Sunday. “It is much larger than any known site in the land of Israel — and outside the land of Israel — in the region of Jordan, Lebanon, southern Syria,” said excavation co-director Dr. Yitzhak Paz in an IAA video.

In addition, just ahead of the construction of a new interchange over the Ein Esur (Ein Asawir) archaeological site, IAA archaeologists also discovered an earlier, 7,000-year-old Chalcolithic settlement under several of the 5,000-year-old structures.

“This is a huge city – a megalopolis in relation to the Early Bronze Age, where thousands of inhabitants, who made their living from agriculture, lived and traded with different regions and even with different cultures and kingdoms in the area… This is the Early Bronze Age New York of our region; a cosmopolitan and planned city,” said excavation directors Itai Elad, Paz and Dr. Dina Shalem in an IAA statement.

“The study of this site will change forever what we know about the emergence and rise of urbanization in the land of Israel and in the whole region,” said Paz. “And it means that what we know now will change what is written today in the traditional books when people read about the archaeology of Israel.”

Salvage excavations have been taking place at the site for the past two and a half years, financed by Netivei Israel – the National Transport Infrastructure Company Ltd. Over 5,000 high school students and volunteers from the area have participated in them.

Due to the importance of the site, Netivei Israel has significantly increased the height of the planned interchange and will preserve the excavations through high-tech documentation and physical conservation.

The digs have revealed an Early Bronze Age (end of the 4th millennium BCE) planned city located near Wadi Ara, near two water springs, in the Haifa district of northern Israel. According to Paz, the land is fertile for agriculture and is close to important, central trade routes.

The Ein Esur ancient settlement contained public and private buildings and areas, streets and alleys and was surrounded by a fortification wall.

“The excavation at this site revealed two main settlements,” explained Shalem in an IAA video. “The earliest one is about 7,000 years old. It’s a very large agricultural settlement. Two thousand years later, another settlement became one of the first cities known in this area of the world.”

The layout of the city, said Elad, the third co-director, indicates it was very thoughtfully planned. During the excavation, the team discovered a very large public building that was unlike any of the others. It was, said Elad, most probably a temple or a shrine, inside which was found an area containing burnt animal bones, presumably for sacrifices. In the temple courtyard is large stone basin for liquids, which the archaeologists assume was also used during religious rituals.

“These findings allow us to look beyond the material into the spiritual life of the large community that lived at the site,” said the archaeologists.

For the 5,000 Israeli pupils and young adults — Jews and Arabs — who participated in the excavations, their firsthand knowledge and experiences may also change their perspective and their connection to the land of Israel. As history books are rewritten, the students were on the frontlines of early research.

“The study of this site will change forever what we know about the emergence

[and]

rise of urbanization in the land of Israel and in the whole region,” said Paz. “And it means that what we know now will change what is written today in the traditional books when people read about the archaeology of Israel.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10129

Israel Is Right Now Negotiating ‘Historic Pact’ With Arab Gulf States That Will Provide ‘Peace And Safety’ In Unprecedented End Times Alliance

While Israel seeks to widen its diplomatic relations with states in the region beyond its two full peace partners Egypt and Jordan, the non-aggression pact initiative stems from Israel’s recognition that full relations with the Gulf states may not be possible unless or until the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is resolved, the TV report noted. The deal would constitute a “historic” document, putting an end to the state of conflict between these Gulf states and Israel, the report said. The draft clauses reportedly include commitments to develop “friendly relations and cooperation” in accordance with the UN charter and international law; to prevent hostility or incitement to hostility against each other; and to eschew any military or security alliance with other parties against each other.

by Geoffrey Grider October 5, 2019

Israel is reportedly negotiating with several Gulf states on a “non-aggression pact” between them as they face off against an increasingly emboldened Iran.

This is obviously not the covenant that Daniel 9:27 talks about, but it could absolutely be the first step in setting the table for the final peace pact under Antichrist in the time of Jacob’s trouble. At the very least, it’s breathtaking to see movement after so long a time of inactivity, and when you consider the scope of what such a pact would entail, the implications are far-reaching and highly prophetic in nature.

“For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.” 1 Thessalonians 5:2,3 (KJV)

When you read the article below from the Times of Israel, look carefully at the section I have broken out in quote formatting. The part that says “the non-aggression pact initiative stems from Israel’s recognition that full relations with the Gulf states may not be possible unless or until the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is resolved” shows you exactly where we are at on the Bible timeline. The only question is how much of this will we get to see come to fruition before the Rapture takes place.

“And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” Daniel 9:27 (KJV)

They are calling it an “historic peace pact” and not only is it historic, I will go one step further and say, if they can pull it off, it is prophetic as well. If they can pull this off, we will be halfway to the Daniel 9 prophecy, and a kitten’s whisker away from the fulfillment of Titus 2:13 (KJV). If you love end times Bible prophecy, the video at the bottom of this article will blow you away, especially when Katz quotes Isaiah.

Israel and Gulf states working on ‘historic pact’ to end conflict between them

FROM THE TIMES OF ISRAEL: The deal, which Channel 12 news described as potentially “historic,” aims to put an end to the state of conflict between the Gulf states and Israel, and reportedly provides for friendly relations, cooperation in a variety of fields, and no war or incitement against each other.

Advancing the Israeli initiative, Foreign Minister Israel Katz met on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly last month with several foreign ministers from Arab Gulf states, Channel 12 news reported Saturday night. There was no immediate comment from the Foreign Ministry, but Katz himself on September 23 tweeted that he had held talks with an unnamed counterpart from an Arab country with which Israel does not have formal relations, and said they discussed “ways to deal with the Iranian threat” and a process for boosting “civilian cooperation.”

Katz, who is leading the effort with the backing of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, agreed with his Gulf Arab interlocutors during “a series of meetings” to set up working teams to take the non-aggression pact forward, the TV report said. He presented his Gulf counterparts with a draft text of the intended pact, which was drawn up by the Israeli Foreign Ministry, the TV report said. It reportedly highlights the opportunity to advance common interests in the context of the threat posed by Iran, and is drafted in accordance with principles of international law.

Katz is also reported to have discussed the intended pact with the Trump administration outgoing special envoy for the peace process, Jason Greenblatt.

While Israel seeks to widen its diplomatic relations with states in the region beyond its two full peace partners Egypt and Jordan, the non-aggression pact initiative stems from Israel’s recognition that full relations with the Gulf states may not be possible unless or until the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is resolved, the TV report noted. The deal would constitute a “historic” document, putting an end to the state of conflict between these Gulf states and Israel, the report said.

The draft clauses reportedly include commitments to develop “friendly relations and cooperation” in accordance with the UN charter and international law; to prevent hostility or incitement to hostility against each other; and to eschew any military or security alliance with other parties against each other.

Among other elements, the TV report said, the draft text specifies cooperation in the fight against terror, and in advancing economic interests.

Katz attended the General Assembly on behalf of Netanyahu, who remained in Israel as he seeks to negotiate a majority coalition. The prime minister had planned to attend the UN gathering and meet on the sidelines with US President Donald Trump, who had said earlier last month that he intended to discuss a possible US-Israel Mutual Defense pact.

At the UN on September 23, Katz held what he said at the time was “a first and fascinating meeting yesterday with one of the Arab foreign ministers.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10120

While Erdogan Slammed Israel At U.N., Turkish Support For Terror Was Revealed

By Steven Emerson October 3, 2019 , 8:00 am

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan used his United Nations General Assembly speech last week to blast Israel as the cause of “injustice” in the Middle East and vow that his country “will continue to stand by the oppressed people of Palestine as she has always done.” But a new report by Israel’s Meir Amit Intelligence and Information Center, as well as new sanctions announced by the U.S. Treasury Department, make it clear that Erdogan is in no position to cast aspersions.

“Turkey turns a blind eye to Hamas’s covert operational and financial activity being carried out from its territory (which has recently been demonstrated in the American sanctions) and regularly denies its existence,” the Meir Amit center reported.

“[T]he latest American designations clearly demonstrate that Turkey continues to be used as a hub for Hamas’s operational and financial activity, even after the departure of Saleh al-Arouri,” the Meir Amit report saidArouri, a founder of the Hamas military wing and a member of the Hamas political bureau, lived in Turkey until last year.

During his time in Turkey, he helped plot Hamas terror attacks. He claimed credit on behalf of Hamas for the 2014 kidnapping and murder of three Israeli yeshiva students. Later that year, the Shin Bet “uncovered an extensive Hamas military network which operated in Judea and Samaria. Its operatives had planted IEDs in Samaria. They [were] handled by Hamas’s headquarters in Turkey,” the Meir Amit report said. “Hamas’s military operatives who were trained abroad (in various countries, including Turkey) participated in this activity.”

For his part, Erdogan considers Hamas a “liberation movement” and denies that it is a terrorist group.

While it supports the Palestinian-Arab cause, Turkey denies autonomy to more than 15 million Kurds and even represses the use of the Kurdish language. It has bombed Kurdish civilians. It occupies much of northwestern Syria and has engaged in ethnic cleansing against the Kurds there. Turkish warplanes bombed a hospital in Afrin during its invasion of the Kurdish enclave last year, independent analysis by Bellingcat, a citizen journalism organization that focuses on war crimes and criminal activities, showed.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Treasury Department announced sanctions on Hamas leaders and ISIS facilitators living in Turkey.

Those include Zaher Jabarin, who heads Hamas’ finance office from Turkey and manages tens of millions of dollars in Hamas money. Jabarin’s transfers of U.S. dollars “finance HAMAS’s terrorist activity,” the Treasury statement said. Like Arouri, Jabarin was one of the founders of the Hamas military wing in Judea and Samaria. Jabarin was in charge of a Hamas squad that abducted and murdered Israeli border policeman Nissim Toledano in 1992, the Meir Amit report said.

“Jabarin has served as the primary point of contact between Hamas and the [Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corp –Quds Force] IRGC-QF. Since 2017, his relations with them were enhanced based on Hamas operatives’ efforts to increase funding from Iran,” the report said.

Treasury also targeted the Turkey-based Redin Exchange as “a key part of the infrastructure used to transfer money” to Hamas. Redin transferred $10 million to the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ military wing, in March.

Redin also facilitated a $2 million transfer last year from the IRGC-QF and Hezbollah to Hamas. Its deputy CEO, Ismail Tash, was the primary contact in numerous Iran-Hamas money transfers, the Meir Amit report found.

Erdogan’s inner circle has encouraged bloodshed between Israel and the Palestinians by providing assistance to the al-Qassam Brigades. Israel’s Shin Bet arrested two suspects last year linked to the Turkish private military company SADAT, which run by top Erdogan military adviser retired Brig. Gen. Adnan Tanriverdi. It accused them of helping Hamas’ military buildup by providing money and weapons to the terrorists. SADAT’s website calls for the use of military force against Israel. Meir Amit reported that Jabarin had recruited the men under instructions from Arouri.

“The liaison of Palestine with the globe should not be left at the mercy of Israel. This requires open support by Islamic countries. Every effort should be made, including use of force,” SADAT says on its website.

Erdogan presented Turkey as a terrorism fighter, saying Turkey killed ISIS fighters in areas of Syria it occupies. He glossed over Turkey’s clandestine support for ISIS in Syria.

 “Turkey has been the country most influenced by the [ISIS] threat; this terrorist organization has harassed our borders and targeted our cities very near the borders with suicide bombings that have killed hundreds of Turkish citizens,” Erdogan said. “Turkey is the first country that has delivered the heaviest blow to the [ISIS] presence in Syria.”

Internal documents and whistleblowers tell a different story — one of a country that plays both sides when it comes to ISIS. Leaked emails from Erdogan’s son-in-law and current Turkish finance minister, Berat Albayrak, showed his connection to an ISIS oil smuggling operations.

The Treasury Department sanctions also targeted several Turkish companies that “materially assisted … or provided financial, material, or technological support” to ISIS.

Turkey’s intelligence agency, the MIT, conspired to bus ISIS jihadists across Turkish territory, leaked Turkish wiretaps show. At least 15,000 ISIS fighters entered Syria that way, Abdullah Bozkurt, former editor of Turkey’s Today’s Zaman newspaper, told the Investigative Project on Terrorism (where we both work) in February.

Turkish police were told not to arrest ISIS fighters traveling to Syria, said former Turkish National Police official Ahmet Yayla.

Turkey provided ISIS with drones and munitions, an ISIS fighter detained by the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) who was interviewed by the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism said. He and a Palestinian-Arab ISIS fighter held by the SDF said that Turkish hospitals provided medical assistance to wounded ISIS terrorists.

“Like me, thousands of ISIS members have been treated in Turkey. Everyone knows that Turkey is the mother of all jihadist groups,” said former ISIS fighter Islam Ahmed Muhammed Balusha. “This applies to the jihadist groups in Syria, Iraq, Libya, and even from Palestine to Afghanistan. Turkey has supported the ISIS massively.”

Erdogan’s party, the AKP, allegedly used ISIS to attack political opponents.

EU INTCEN, the European Union’s intelligence arm, reportedly suggested the AKP ordered an October 2015 ISIS suicide bombing at a peace rally in Ankara that killed 109 people.

Erdogan’s pretense of being the savior of the region’s problems belies the fact his government has become a major terrorism supporter and is guilty of everything he criticizes Israel of doing.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10112

IDF Soldiers Make Incredible Discovery Of Watchtower Dating Back To The First Temple Period In The 8th Century BC Under King Hezekiah In Judah

The tower, which was dated to the reign of King Hezekiah of Judah in the 8th century BCE, was likely part of a network of observation posts that used torches as means to send messages between communities, the Israel Antiquities Authority said in a statement Wednesday. The IAA said the watchtower, which was found on the Paratroopers Brigade training base, was built using especially large stones, some of which weighed as much as eight tons, and was located on high ground overlooking the Hebron Hills, Judean Hills and the coastal area around Ashkelon.

by Geoffrey Grider October 2, 2019

IDF soldiers recently uncovered a watchtower from the First Temple period during an archaeological dig on their base in southern Israel.

To find this watchtower dating back to the time of King Hezekiah is truly an amazing find, and yet another brick in the wall of solid, factual archaeological evidence showing both the historical connection of the Jews to the land, and to the accuracy of the Bible.

“And Hezekiah answered, It is a light thing for the shadow to go down ten degrees: nay, but let the shadow return backward ten degrees. And Isaiah the prophet cried unto the LORD: and he brought the shadow ten degrees backward, by which it had gone down in the dial of Ahaz.” 2 Kings 20:10,11 (KJV)

King Hezekiah was a good king over Judah and Israel, and he is a prominent figure in one of the most incredible accounts in the Bible. The king was sore sick, and lay dying, and with prayers and tears besought the Lord to heal him and extend his life. The Lord not only did that for King Hezekiah, but certified with an absolutely mind-boggling sign. Isaiah the prophet cried out to the Lord on behalf of King Hezekiah, and the sun was turn backwards by ten degrees! Finding this watchtower that dates back to that time is a priceless link to the rich biblical archaeological history of the Jewish people in the holy land.

Troops uncover First Temple-era observation post on training base

FROM THE TIMES OF ISRAEL: The tower, which was dated to the reign of King Hezekiah of Judah in the 8th century BCE, was likely part of a network of observation posts that used torches as means to send messages between communities, the Israel Antiquities Authority said in a statement Wednesday.

The IAA said the watchtower, which was found on the Paratroopers Brigade training base, was built using especially large stones, some of which weighed as much as eight tons, and was located on high ground overlooking the Hebron Hills, Judean Hills and the coastal area around Ashkelon.

“Some 2,700 years after Sennacherib’s campaign, Israel Defense Forces soldiers uncovered a watchtower of soldiers from the Judean army, very similar to the ones the army uses today,” the statement said.

The dig was carried out by soldiers on the base as part of  an IDF initiative to encourage commanders and soldiers to be “responsible and actively involved in protecting the values of nature, the landscape and heritage in their environment.”

Some 150 soldiers undergoing basic training and their commanders took part in the project, the IAA said, and the project was overseen by IAA officials Saar Ganor and Lifshitz Vladik. Ganor and Vladik said the tower appeared to be part of the torch communications system, as described in the Hebrew Bible.

“The strategic location of the tower served as an observation point and warning [system] against the Philistine enemy, one of whose main cities was Ashkelon,” said the IAA. “The Kingdom of Judah built a system of towers and fortresses that were a communications, warning and signaling post, as a way of passing messages and field intelligence,” they added.

According to the IAA, operations at the watchtower ceased in 701 BCE, when the Assyrian King Sennacherib destroyed 46 cities and thousands of villages and farms during his military campaign in Judah. During the dig, the entrance to the tower was discovered to have been sealed, with the IAA saying the soldiers stationed there likely went to a nearby fortified city when the Assyrians invaded.

Permanent link to this article: http://discerningthetimes.me/?p=10109