ZURICH - In a bombshell operation, a Swiss law enforcement team showed up at the Zurich hotel hosting the annual gathering of the international soccer organization - & arrested nine senior officials. The arrests come after ' decades ' of corruption allegations aimed at FIFA. The arrested officials face charges of taking money in exchange for World Cup hosting bids, as well taking bribes in exchange for media & marketing rights for major international tournaments. The allegations are damning , but frankly , they couldn’t have come at a better time for Israel. Until Wednesday, much of the coverage of the FIFA Congress surrounded whether delegates would vote to ' suspend ' Israel from world soccer.
The Palestinian Football Association introduced the motion to suspend Israel , accusing it of unjustly restricting Palestinian soccer players’ freedom of movement & claiming that Israel’s West Bank settlement teams violate FIFA rules. Israeli officials called the effort blatantly political & said that the Palestinians’ complaints all concern Israel’s security forces - not Israel’s soccer teams. Suspending the Jewish state from international play would have rocked world soccer’s boat , inviting allegations of anti-Semitism & double standards. Israel , to say the least , likely would not have gone quietly into the night.
Now, with FIFA’s boat already rocking, member states will probably be loath to pile one controversy on another. FIFA President Sepp Blatter, already opposed to Israel’s suspension ( he met last week with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu & Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas ) is probably looking to avoid two crises on his hands at once. Israel can take comfort in historical precedent. When Netanyahu went to the White House in January 1998 to meet with President Clinton , he reportedly expected a tense meeting about the ' peace process '. But the Monica Lewinsky scandal broke ' that day ' , leaving the president preoccupied. With world soccer preoccupied & the eyes of the world elsewhere , this could be FIFA & Israel’s ' Monica ' moment.
NEWS REPORT : The Times of Israel
Genesis 12v3 - " I will ' bless them ' that bless thee , & ' curse him ' that curseth thee "
PROPHECY INSIGHTS - Can there be ' ANY ' doubt God's providential hand is working among the nations ?!?!? ProphecyNewsDesk would not ordinarily feature ' sports-related ' content , but even in the breaking story over the FIFA ' corruption scandal ' we see the indelible mark of God's promises to His people , Israel.
FIFA has a long & well-documented history of corruption , systemic bribery & money laundering involving ' hundreds of millions ' of dollars - & all going largely unchallenged for decades !! So , just as FIFA was considering a motion to ' boot Israel out ' of international soccer ~ an international bombshell is dropped ~ as 14 Senior FIFA officials including the Vice-President are arrested in Switzerland by America's FBI & Swiss agents , creating a global firestorm. So are these events connected - or - merely co-incidence ?? . . . Why did it happen now ?? Despite being an imperfect & even ungodly nation , Israel remains God's ' chosen ' people & the prophet Zechariah expresses God's unwavering promise to His people " for he that toucheth you toucheth the ' apple of his eye ' ". So we can see the principle , those that bless Israel , God blesses ... those that curse Israel , God curses !! History is replete with glaring examples of blessings & cursings to the nations according to their dealings with Israel. The critical mistake for FIFA was giving any consideration to ' unjustly ' expel & punish His people.
ISAIAH 54v15-17 - Whosoever shall gather together against thee ( Israel ) ' shall fall ' for thy sake. Behold, I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire & that bringeth forth an instrument for his work & I have created the waster to destroy. ' No weapon ' that is formed against thee shall prosper ; & ' every tongue ' that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the ' heritage ' ( portion ) of the servants of the LORD & their righteousness is of me, saith the LORD
However , even beyond God's protection of His people Israel , the FIFA scandal has dire ' geo-political ' ramifications which may yet set the world aflame. At the centre of this international controversy is the question of whether the controversial 2018 Russian & 2022 Qatar World Cup fixtures were awarded as a result of ' bribes '. Already there is talk that these World Cups could be withdrawn from both host countries & even EU soccer nations are discussing ' boycotting ' the Russian World Cup. The FIFA World Cup tournaments are worth ' BILLIONS ' to the host nations !!! For Russia - which is already ' on its knees ' economically - the loss of the 2018 World Cup fixture would be a financial body blow & further deepen Vladimir Putin's growing hatred of the West. In the aftermath of the FIFA scandal , Putin has publically slammed the FBI investigation , claiming its part of an ' anti-Russian conspiracy ' by the West. Having spent over ' $50 BILLION ' on his 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics , the prideful Vladimir Putin will be incensed by any attempt to strip Russia of the 2018 FIFA World Cup !!! So , even in the multi-billion dollar arena of ' sport ' we can see the growing divide & hostility between the nations , & of Russia's growing economic desperation & isolation , that will soon lead to unprecedented global turmoil foretold in God's Word.
EZEKIEL 38 v 3-8 - Thus saith the Lord GOD ; Behold , I am against thee , O Gog ( Russian Autocrat ) , the chief prince of Meshech & Tubal : And I will turn thee back & put ' HOOKS ' into thy jaws & I will bring thee forth & all thine army , horses & horsemen , all of them clothed with all sorts of armour , even ' a great company ' with bucklers & shields , all of them handling swords : Persia ( Iran ) , Ethiopia & Libya with them ; all of them with shield & helmet : Gomer & all his bands ; the house of Togarmah ( Turkey ) of the north quarters , & all his bands : & ' many people ' with thee. Be thou prepared & prepare for thyself , thou , & all thy company that are ' assembled unto thee ' & be thou ' a guard ' unto them. After many days thou shalt be visited : in the latter years thou shalt come into the land ( Israel ) that is brought back from the sword, & is gathered out of many people , against the mountains of Israel,