Jews are naturally interested in Barack Obama's policy in the Middle East, and not a few rabbis are using telltale signs in American leader’s expressions of religion and moral values to draw somewhat far-fetched conclusions regarding the spiritual nature of his presidency.
Since Obama's election, Rabbi Amnon Yitzhak, the most popular Orthodox Jewish "evangelist" in Israel, has been among those teaching that he is the representation of "Tidal," the "king of nations" mentioned in Genesis 14:1.
Being the forty-fourth president of the United States, Obama’s presidency will be characterized by bloodshed, because in gematria – where Hebrew letters can take numeric value and vice versa – 44 makes the word for blood.
Rabbi Yitzhak also views Obama as a Christian Muslim, and as such a representation of both Edom (a euphemism for Christianity) and Ishmael (Islam), Israel's two arch enemies. Obama's presidency therefore will be characterized by dangerous anti-Israel policy that has the potential to bring about Israel's destruction.
This danger, says Rabbi Yitzhak, can be averted by the repentance of individual Jews. In other words, Israel's wellbeing depends not on the IDF, but on proper Jewish response to God.
Rabbi Yoel Schwartz, another respected figure in certain religious circles, claims that the summer’s Gaza war has initiated the great war of Gog and Magog with nations gathering against Israel prior to the coming of Messiah. The reason for this war, he says, has everything to do with homosexuality, and particularly the annual gay and lesbian parade in Jerusalem, which was postponed this year because of the Gaza conflagration.
President Obama enters this scheme by being the first American president to openly supported gay and lesbian marriage.
According to Jewish understanding, incest was the cause of the Flood and incest will be the cause for the last apocalyptic war of Gog and Magog.
Like Rabbi Yitzhak, Rabbi Schwartz uses esoteric interpretation methods to draw his conclusion that the world is coming to its end. An example is the appearance of the name "Obama" in Ezekiel 38:2, where, in Hebrew, counting seven letters from the last letter of the word "prince" makes the word "Obama." Be that as it may, Rabbi Schwartz still says that Israel bears heavy responsibility for the impending global doom, and therefore must undergo a deep and thorough searching of her soul.
There are other rabbis and small time "prophets" who likewise use a "biblical code" system to find names, places, events and even specific dates that supposedly reveal Obama's most secret intents.
Intriguing and captivating as it may be, however, relying on such methods for the understanding of current affairs has proved erroneous too many times in the past. Having said that, however, this phenomenon demonstrates that many rabbis harbor a deep and unusual distrust of Obama.