I do not believe that Israel will be divided before the Tribulation. It doesn't make sense in light of the Psalm 83 War that a covenant would be formed based in the current peace plan with the Palestinians that is to last half way into the Tribulation, if they are all but annihilated before the Tribulation even begins. It will be the antichrist after his conquests who divides the land for gain (Daniel 11:36-39). The following is from a summary I put together:
Ezekiel prophesied that the mountains of Israel would be taken from Israel's enemies and given back to Israel after their return from exile. These ancient heights are the Golan Heights and the mountains in the West Bank.
Ezekiel 36:1-5 "And you, son of man, prophesy to the mountains of Israel, and say, 'O mountains of Israel, hear the word of the LORD! Thus says the Lord GOD: "Because the enemy has said of you, 'Aha! The ancient heights have become our possession,'"' therefore prophesy, and say, 'Thus says the Lord GOD: "Because they made you desolate and swallowed you up on every side, so that you became the possession of the rest of the nations, and you are taken up by the lips of talkers and slandered by the people"- therefore, O mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord GOD! Thus says the Lord GOD to the mountains, the hills, the rivers, the valleys, the desolate wastes, and the cities that have been forsaken, which became plunder and mockery to the rest of the nations all around- therefore thus says the Lord GOD: "Surely I have spoken in My burning jealousy against the rest of the nations and against all Edom, who gave My land to themselves as a possession, with wholehearted joy and spiteful minds, in order to plunder its open country."'
Ezekiel 36:6-7 & 12 "Therefore prophesy concerning the land of Israel, and say to the mountains, the hills, the rivers, and the valleys, 'Thus says the Lord GOD: "Behold, I have spoken in My jealousy and My fury, because you have borne the shame of the nations." Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: "I have raised My hand in an oath that surely the nations that are around you shall bear their own shame....My people Israel; they shall take possession of you, and you shall be their inheritance; no more shall you bereave them of children."
This prophecy was fulfilled when Israel took back the Golan Heights and the West Bank in the Six-Day-War in 1967.
Where are we at today on the prophetic timeline?
Today, the battle is over the land, particularly over the "ancient heights", as Gaza was all but handed over to the Palestinians in 2005. It is interesting to note from the last section that Ezekiel (chapter 36) prophesied that once Israel took possession of the "ancient heights" again, the mountains would be theirs permanently. This means there will not be a repeat of the "Gaza give-away" with the Golan Heights or the West Bank.
***In other words, the current peace "partition plan" will never come to fruition.***
The current peace plan will fail. However, the global push for peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians will continue until the rapture of the Church, because God has made Jerusalem a heavy stone for all people (Zechariah 12:2-3).
Those that try to divide the land appear to be peacemakers. However, they are acting in opposition to the Will of God, so destruction will come on those that try:
1 Thessalonians 5:3 For when they say, "Peace and safety!", then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman. And they shall not escape.
With the instant disappearance of millions of souls, the rapture will be a "sudden destruction" upon the inhabitants of the earth. Possible physical ramifications of that miraculous event could include such things as earthquakes or cosmic disturbances. The "sudden destruction" will come at a time when the world is saying "peace and safety". World leaders have been amazingly quoting this prophetic passage in their recent push for peace talks.
However, we are witnessing a preview of the "sudden destruction" on a smaller scale today, as countries continue to push Israel to divide their land. The current "peace plan" is against Israel's best interests and against God's Will regarding His promises in Ezekiel about the "ancient heights". Bill Koenig and John McTernan have been documenting for decades the punishments that have come against nations within a day or two of an offence against Israel's best interests. In other words, the "curse for curse" clause against Abraham and his descendants never expired:
Genesis 12:3 I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you...
In many cases these "curses" have slowed down the "peace process". It is not just about punishment here, it is about God's Will and plan. Don't mistake the "curse for curse" clause with God's "Judgment". When God judges a nation, their sovereignty is lost. This is not the case with God cursing a nation as punishment for touching the "apple of His eye" and doing what is necessary to carry out His Will and plan.
Psalm 17:8-9 Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings from the wicked who are out to destroy me, from my mortal enemies who surround me.
It is possible that the "sudden destruction" of the rapture could come at a time when the current "peace plan" seems inevitable to come to pass. Currently, the United Nations is trying to set a deadline for September to get Israel and the Palestinians back into negotiations. If that date passes they have threatened to recognize a Palestinian state and force Israel to give up the land.
Israel will not lose the West Bank, so God will intervene. The rapture of the Church would certainly fit the bill with "sudden destruction" when the world is saying "peace and safety". However, any number of things could push that date off or cancel it completely. In fact, this week (late April 2011) there is talk of annexing the the settlements in the West Bank to try to stop the United Nations from forcing a Palestinian state. (Click here to read article).
After the "sudden destruction" and removal of the Holy Spirit via the rapture of the Church, evil will become unrestrained (2 Thessalonians 2:7). Israel's number one ally, the U.S., and any lesser allies, will likely be crippled in the aftermath of the "sudden destruction" of the rapture. Israel's Muslim neighbors could take this as being a sign from their god, Allah, and seize the opportunity to attack Israel.
Luke 21:28 "Now when these things begin to happen, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.”