|Ariel Sharon in critical condition|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Thursday, 02 January 2014 22:32|
Former Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's health has taken a turn for the worse in recent days and doctors are now describing his condition as critical. Sharon suffered a major brain hemorrhage in the days immediately following Israel's Gaza disengagement in December 2005. He underwent emergency surgery to stem the bleeding, but was later readmitted to Hadassah hospital after suffering a second major stroke. He was placed in an induced medical coma in an effort to limit the damage to his brain but he never regained consciousness. The former Prime Minister has now suffered kidney failure and doctors are not expecting him to live for much longer. His family are keeping watch by his bedside.
Quote: “Doctors said Sharon, 85, who has been in a vegetative state since 2006, was suffering from renal failure that could lead to multiple organ system failure and death. Hebrew media reports late Wednesday said doctors had told the family that Sharon had, at most, no more than four days to live.
Many Orthodox Jews perceived Sharon's sudden downfall to be 'divine retribution' for his role in Israel's disengagement from Gaza. Believing that the land was given to the Jewish people by God through an eternal covenant, they say it is forbidden for any government to give it away, especially to those who are sworn to Israel's destruction. Many also saw prophetic significance in the way in which the disengagement was carried out. Jewish residents of the Gaza Strip, many of whom had lived there from before Israel became a nation in 1948, received their eviction notices on the 9th of Av – the anniversary of the destruction of both the First and Second Temples. Israel took control of the Gaza Strip from Egypt in the Six Day War of 1967. The disengagement from Gaza took place 38 years later. It is remarkable that this is the exact length of time that the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness following their exodus from Egypt. Their wandering for 38 years was a direct result of the unwillingness of the nation to believe God and go in to possess the land He had promised them.
Again in the New Testament, there is another occasion where a 38 year period mentioned. The Lord Jesus met a lame man lying by the pool of Bethesda. The man, unable to help himself and having nobody else to turn to, is representative of the sinner in his sinful state. The question the Lord asked, “wilt thou be made well?”, may sound strange to us, but it was intended to bring about an acknowledgement from the man of the helplessness of his condition. The Lord's request, “take up thy bed and walk”, was the test of faith, to see whether the man was willing or not to trust His ability to save. It's the same for us today. As sinners, there is absolutely nothing we can do to make ourselves right in the sight of a holy God. It is only through acknowledging the helplessness of our state and putting our trust in the Messiah's sacrifice on the cross that we can be 'healed' from our sin (Isaiah 53:5).
The prospect of Ariel Sharon's passing also reminds us of the 'prophecies' of Yitzchak Kaduri. Kaduri was a Kabbalistic Rabbi who made several startling claims concerning the person of the Messiah. Shortly before his death, he gave his followers an envelope containing a handwritten note, with strict instructions that it not be opened until one year later. In the note the rabbi wrote an acrostic message, revealing the name of the Messiah to his stunned followers. The note in stated in Hebrew, “Concerning the letter abbreviation of the Messiah's name, 'He shall lift the people and prove that His word and law are valid'”. In Hebrew, “ירום העם ויוכיח שדברו ותורתו עומדים”. The first letter of each word in the phrase spell out the name 'Yehoshua' or Jesus. Kaduri also believed that the Messiah would come after Ariel Sharon's death...
Quote: "A few months before his death, Kaduri gave a Yom Kippur address in which he gave clues as to how to recognize the Messiah. He told those gathered for the Day of Atonement in his synagogue the Messiah would not come until former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon dies. Sharon was stricken while in office Jan. 4, 2006. He remained in a coma until replaced by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert. While many expected the imminent passing of Sharon, he has remained alive but unconscious ever since his attack.
I don't know whether Yitzchak Kaduri was a true believer or not, but the words he spoke concerning the Messiah were true. British Prime Minister Winston Churchill once said concerning the Second World War that “never was so much owed by so many to so few”. But concerning the Lord Jesus Christ we can say that never has one so great stooped so low to save so little. For it was through His humiliation that He has lifted us up. It was through His suffering and death on the cross that He has brought us life and peace. And the day is coming when He will prove to the nation of Israel, and to the world, that His word and law stand. Do you know Him? Have you trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour? Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation today.