ISRAEL - Ultra-Orthodox Refuse Military Service

Arno Froese

Several thousand ultra-Orthodox Jews blocked a major intersection in central Jerusalem to protest against efforts to force them to enlist in the Israeli military like their secular compatriots.

Several thousand men and boys wearing traditional black suits and hats took to the streets of Jerusalem and blocked a key intersection.

Some sat in the middle of the street while others danced and sang. One sign said: “To military prison for the ‘crime’ of Torah study.”

“The state wants to silence all the Jews who want to study Torah,” said one man, who looked to be in his 40s and gave his name only as Tzvi.

“Lately they have seen the (ultra-Orthodox) population growing, so they want us to serve in the army and be absorbed into the general population.”

Israeli law requires men to serve two years and eight months in the military on reaching the age of 18, while women must serve for two.

The ultra-Orthodox are against serving for a variety of reasons. Some do not recognize Israel, believing a Jewish state is not allowed before the coming of the Messiah.

Others argue that seminary study is just as important to Israel as military service, or that ultra-Orthodox soldiers would be confronted with salty language and other irreligious behavior.

-www.yahoo.com/news, 19 October 2017

Arno's commentary

As the article indicates, some Ultra-Orthodox groups do not even recognize the state of Israel. In that case, they should take the words of the prophet Jeremiah seriously: “And now have I given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant; and the beasts of the field have I given him also to serve him. And all nations shall serve him, and his son, and his son’s son, until the very time of his land come: and then many nations and great kings shall serve themselves of him. And it shall come to pass, that the nation and kingdom which will not serve the same Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, and that will not put their neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, that nation will I punish, saith the Lord, with the sword, and with the famine, and with the pestilence, until I have consumed them by his hand” (Jeremiah 27:6-8). Paying taxes and participating in the defense of one’s nation is encouraged in the Old as well as the New Testament.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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