|Co-op supermarket extends boycott of Israeli produce|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Thursday, 03 May 2012 12:51|
The Co-Op, a major chain of supermarket stores in the UK, have recently announced plans to extend their boycott of Israeli settlement produce.
The organization already boycotts all Israeli produce exported from the 'settlements' (Judea, Samaria and east Jerusalem), but they have now decided to sever ties with at least four Israeli companies that use products which originate from the territories. The Co-Op emphasize that this is not an 'Israeli boycott' as such, relations with Israeli companies that do not source products from the territories will not be affected. They also say they will be boosting their trade with 'Palestinian' producers. But the announcement, only the latest in a long line of divestment and boycott initiatives now coming out of the United Kingdom, has drawn criticism from the Israeli government.
Quote: “A spokesperson for the Palestinian Union of Agricultural Work Committees, which works to improve the conditions of Palestinian agricultural communities, said: "Israeli agricultural export companies like Mehadrin profit from and are directly involved in the ongoing colonisation of occupied Palestinian land and theft of our water. Trade with such companies constitutes a major form of support for Israel's apartheid regime over the Palestinian people, so we warmly welcome this principled decision by the Co-operative. The movement for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel until it complies with international law is proving to be a truly effective form of action in support of Palestinian rights."
The Co-Op prides itself on its ethical business policy, but the chain has come under the increasing influence of the Palestinian Solidarity Campaign, a left-wing organisation that lobbies against Israel, branding it an apartheid state and accusing it of perpetrating human rights abuses and war crimes. The decision to boycott Israeli companies that source their produce in 'Palestinian territory' may seem on the surface to be ethical and even-handed, but in reality it is one that is deeply flawed and blatantly biassed against Israel.
Unfortunately, as you can see, this boycott will do absolutely nothing to promote peace and reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians. Rather it will drive a wedge between them at best, and at worst delegitimize Israel and further the cause of those who seek to bring about its ultimate destruction.
But those who study the Scriptures will know that all of this is in direct fulfilment of Biblical prophecy. For the Bible states that during the last days, the status of Jerusalem would become a “burdensome stone for all people” (Zechariah 12:2-3), and that Israel's enemies would be “in siege against Judah and Jerusalem” (modern-day West Bank). This Co-Op boycott, as wrong and as frustrating as it may be, is simply further evidence that what the Bible says would happen is now coming to pass. As believers in the Messiah we have cause for rejoicing in this, not because Israel is suffering, but because it is a sure sign that their redemption is drawing near. For the Lord will allow all of these things to happen in order to bring the nation of Israel back to Himself...
And what a day it will be when the nation of Israel recognizes their Messiah. As Paul said in Romans 11:15, if their temporary casting away through their rejection of the Messiah brought about reconciliation to God for the rest of the world, what shall Israel's restoration be to us but life from the dead? What a change a believing nation of Israel would make to the world. But what about you? The Bible says he that has the Son has life. But it also says he that has not the Son of God has not life (1st John 5:12). Of course each one of us is alive physically, but spiritually speaking, if we do not have Christ in our hearts and if our sins are not forgiven then we are as good as dead. The Bible declares that the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23). That is, death is the punishment that our sins deserve (Genesis 2:17). But praise God that Jesus Christ came into the world to save us from our sins. He did not come to condemn the world but to save it (John 3:17). He bore God's punishment for our sins when He died upon the cross of Calvary (Isaiah 53:11). And all who accept Him as their Saviour can have their sins forgiven. Have you trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins? Turn away from your sins and trust in Him for salvation today.