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The Promise Land

There is a land beyond the eastern shores which borders between the Mediterranean Sea to the west, the Jordan Valley Rift to the east, the mountains of Lebanon to the north and Eilat Bay to the south.

It is a small piece of land covering approximately 13,000 square miles, but it is the home of a long-standing conflict between two groups of people who want to establish two independent countries on it.

And the Lord said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him: “Lift your eyes now and look from the place where you are—northward, southward, eastward, and westward; for all the land which you see I give to you and your descendants forever (Genesis 13:14-15)

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict began in 1948 when the Jews decided to resettle in the Promise Land.

History revealed that the people who resided in that area before and during that time were a multi-ethnic and multi-religious group of people comprising of the Romans, Byzantines, Arabs, Muslims, Christians and remnant Jews.

The Jewish remnants are the descendants of the original people of Judea who remained behind after the Romans destroyed Jerusalem in the year 70.

Some historians claimed that it was during this period that the Romans renamed the region Palestine. It is also said that before 1948 this mixture of people lived peacefully on the land.

So what changes all of this?

In the nineteenth century, the Jews in Europe suffered severe persecutions, so they wanted a homeland for themselves.

They began to migrate to this area with the intention of taking over the land. Soon fights and civil wars broke out between the people of Palestine and the Jews.

Palestinian refugees in 1948. Image courtesy of wikipedia.org

Palestinian refugees in 1948. Image courtesy of wikipedia.org

In 1947, the UN intervened and divided the land allotting 55% to the Jewish people and the remaining land to the people of Palestine.

This decision resulted in a full-blown war between these two nations over the land. After the war, the Jews gained 78% of the land. The strife over land continues presently.

Who is the original owner of this piece of land?

To receive your answer you have to go to the Bible

The Covenant between Abraham and God.

Abraham lived with his wife and family in Ur of the Chaldeans. One day the Lord appeared to him and told him to leave his father’s house and go to a land where He will show him.

Abraham unquestionably obeyed God and immediately departed with his wife and family from his familiar homeland to the unknown.

When they arrived in the land of Canaan, the Lord told him that he will give the entire area to his descendants. (Genesis 12:7)

The Lord told Abraham that he would give the land, as far as the eyes could see, to his descendants and he will make his descendant as the dust of the earth. (Genesis 13:14-17).

The Lord also told him that his descendants will be as numerous as the stars in the heaven (Genesis 15:4-5).

Furthermore, God showed Abraham the boundaries of his land. It extends from the river of Egypt to the great river to the river Euphrates.

The promise land

The promised land

Base on the above map this area includes part of Egypt, part of Syria, half of Iraq and all of Jordon and Saudi Arabia. This is the entire Arabian Peninsula which is approximately the size of USA. It was much larger than the little strip of land that is currently Israel. (Genesis 15: 18-20).

The Lord made a covenant with Abraham that he would give him this land to his descendants or his seed (Genesis 17:8).

The seed of Abraham includes Ishmael and his descendants and Isaac and his descendants. This covenant was also passed on to Isaac and his children—Jacob and Esau and their descendants.

Often we forget about the descendants of Ishmael and Esau, but they are all Abraham’s seed.

Furthermore, the Lord promised that Abraham’s seed would be as numerous as the sand on the seashores and the stars in heaven.

The present Jewish population is significantly less than that.

“Blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heaven and as the sand which is on the seashore, and your descendants shall possess the gate of their enemies. 18 In your seed, all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.” (Genesis 22:17-18)

When God speaks, His words transcends throughout time in the physical and spiritual realm because His words are spirit and life. The Word of God will never cease but continues throughout eternity.

Are the present Jews the original Jewish people?

This question is a hot topic, and many people have various opinions.

According to the Bible, after Solomon’s disobedience to God, the Lord divided the land of Israel and gave ten tribes to Solomon’s servant and the country was called Israel. The other tribes was ruled by Solomon’s son and was named Judah (1 Kings 11:31)

Israel and Judah in the period of the kings - Bible history.com

Israel and Judah in the period of the kings – Bible history.com

 

The children of Israel (Judah and Israel) disobeyed God and lived a sinful life. The Lord became angry with them and rained judgment upon their land. (2 Kings 17)

First, God allowed Israel to be invaded by the Assyrian army who plundered and took over their country. Many of the people died, some went as refugees to the land of Judah, others were taken into captivity by the Assyrians while others fled for their life and were dispersed all over the world.

As a matter of fact, the Lord said that He would cast Israel from the land if they rejected Him.

 But if you or your sons at all turn from following Me, and do not keep My commandments and My statutes which I have set before you, but go and serve other gods and worship them, then I will cut off Israel from the land which I have given them; and this house which I have consecrated for My name I will cast out of My sight. Israel will be a proverb and a byword among all peoples. (1 Kings 9:6-7)

In spite of the judgment of Israel, his treacherous sister continued in her abomination and refused to repent (Jeremiah 3:6-10).

Thus, the Lord sent a stern warning to the people through His prophets. God declared a terrible calamity on them.

He would wipe Jerusalem clean as a dish and turn it upside down. He would forsake the remnants of His inheritance and deliver them into the hands of the enemies where they would become victims of plunder  (2 Kings 21:11-15)

Wow! What a word! No one wants to hear those awful words spoken over their lives.

The land of Judah was captured and the people were taken into captivity into the land of Babylon (2 Kings 19).

The Babylonian invasion of Judah by James Tissot/wikipedia.org

The Babylonian invasion of Judah by James Tissot/wikipedia.org

After seventy years the Lord showed the Jews unmerited favor and restore their land under King Cyrus. They rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem and the temple of God (Ezra and Nehemiah).

However, the city was subsequently destroyed by the Romans leaving a remnant of Jews on the land. The land, therefore, became an area where different nations invaded, conquered and settled, and only the stronger nation survived.

Throughout history, man gained territories by fighting wars. The thirst for power and wealth breeds lust and greed resulting in wars and conflicts, which continues to this very day.

The Abrahamic land of Israel is settled by the different nations that last conquered and settled. The inhabitants may or may not be directly related to Abraham, but one thing is sure, God no longer favors any nation or country over the other.

We are all aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus, we who were once far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ (Ephesians 2:12-13).

Additional References: Psalms 91: Genesis 12

Israel – Land of Creation; pravda.ru; answersinrevelation.org; Babylonian captivity

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