Some truths about Israel and the end of its enemies
In regard to the requirement to be friendly to all people and to love them fairly, I formerly said, “a friendship cannot be build and love cannot be braided by sacrificing the truth. Without the truth, friendship and love became illusory and deceitful. Out of my strong feeling toward Israel due to Jesus Christ, I am obliged to be friendly with the people who called themselves Palestinians and to love them without denying several truth about Israel which very much related to my Christian faith as discussed below. This writing is made with no intention to hurt the pride on anybody at all.
Whose land is the land called Palestine?
Israelites, either Jews or Christians call this region by the name “promise land” due to the promise of God (Yahweh) to give the land to Abraham and his descendants or “holy land” since God Himself will dwell among His people on this land (eg, 1 Kings 11:36). This promise of God to Abraham and his sons and daughters is repeated many times throughout the Old Testaments, such as:
- 1. “Abram traveled through the land as far as the site of the great tree of Moreh at Shechem. At that time the Canaanites were in the land. The LORD appeared to Abram and said, “To your offspring [a] I will give this land.” So he built an altar there to the LORD, who had appeared to him.” (Genesis 12:6-7 NIV)
- 2. “He also said to him, “I am the LORD, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land to take possession of it.” (Genesis 15:7 NIV)
Someone would probably raise questions, “Why was this region given to Abraham and his descendants while it had been occupied by other people? Shouldn’t that land belongs to Canaanites? The answer is simple, “Because the land or even this whole earth belongs to God.”
- 1. The land must not be sold permanently, because the land is mine and you are but aliens and my tenants. (Leviticus 25:23 NIV)
- 2. “Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine,” (Exodus 19:5 NIV)
- 3. Who has a claim against me that I must pay? Everything under heaven belongs to me. (Job 41:11 NIV)
Why not Ishmael?
It is true that Ishmael also son of Abraham from an Egyptian maidservant of his wife (Sara) named Hagar (Genesis 16:1, 15). But the offspring of Abraham in this covenant between God and Abraham is Isaac and not Ishmael.
- 4. “And Abraham said to God, “If only Ishmael might live under your blessing!” Then God said, “Yes, but your wife Sarah will bear you a son, and you will call him Isaac. [a] I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him. (Genesis 17:18-19 NIV)
This is very important to remember since it is related to the promise of the coming of Messiah.
- 5. “The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own brothers. You must listen to him.” (Deuteronomy 18:15 NIV)
In this situation, Moses was talking to Israelites and therefore, the term ‘among your own brother’ should be interpreted as among the 12 tribes if Israel, the offspring of Jacob, and this has nothing to do whatsoever with Ishmael or Esau. . Therefore, God’s promise concerning the land is then revealed again to Jacob, on of Isaac’s sons, who were latter on be called Israel.
- 6. “Jacob said to Joseph, “God Almighty [a] appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan, and there he blessed me and said to me, ‘I am going to make you fruitful and will increase your numbers. I will make you a community of peoples, and I will give this land as an everlasting possession to your descendants after you.” (Genesis 48:3-4 NIV)
The term “the land I promised” is then mentioned repeatedly in the Old Testament as in Numbers 14:23, 32:11; Deuteronomy 10:11, 31:20, 21, 34:4, Joshua 1:6 and Judges 2:1. With these all, it can now be concluded that “the promise land” or “the holy land” is given by God to Israel and that God has all the rights to do so.
Where is that land?
The borders of the promise land is listed briefly in the Old Testament as follows.
- 7. “Your territory will extend from the desert to Lebanon, and from the great river, the Euphrates—all the Hittite country—to the Great Sea [a] on the west.” (Joshua 1:4 NIV)
Further details about the borders of the promise land can be read in the books of Numbers (34:1-12) and Joshua (14-19), by which Joshua divide the land into the 12 tribes of Israel as is shown on the following picture.
Why is the promise land called Palestine?
Roman rulers put down Jewish revolts in about A.D. 70 and A.D. 132. In A.D. 135, the Romans drove the Jews out of Jerusalem, following the failed Bar Kochba revolt. The Romans named the area Palaestina, at about this time. The name Palaestina, which became Palestine in English, is derived from Herodotus, who used the term Palaistine Syria to refer to the entire southern part of Syria, meaning “Philistine Syria.” In fact, the name Palestine does NOT have anything to do with the Arabs entering Israel and called themselves Palestine people or the Philistine, Israel’s old and worst enemy who used to live at the coast near the Gaza strip.
What does the Qur’an say?
Here is three verses of the Quran as examples, accompanied by the footnote taken from the Quran in Indonesian language which translated by the Department of Religious of the Republic of Indonesia.
- 8. “But We delivered him and (his nephew) Lut (and directed them) to the land which We have blessed for the nations.” (Anbiya 71, Y.ALI)
- Footnote: the term ‘land’ means the land of Syam including Palestine. God bless that land means many prophets will arise from that land and it is a fertile land.
- 9. “O my people! Enter the holy land which Allah hath assigned unto you, and turn not back ignominiously, for then will ye be overthrown, to your own ruin.” (Ma’idah 21, Y. ALI)
- Footnote: the Palestinian land is assigned to the Jews by God, as long as they have faith in God and obey Him.
- 10. “Thus it was, but We made the Children of Israel inheritors of such things.” (Shu’ara 59)
- Footnote: This means God gave the Israelites a strong kingdom, apostleship, and so on in a the land which has been promised (Palestine).
Therefore, the Jews, Christians and Muslims should be in agreement that the land of Palestine belongs to Israel, not by colonialism act, nor by any aggression on other people’s land but as a gift of God. Should there be people called by the name Palestinians then it should be the people of Israel. The people who now called themselves Palestinians are simply Arab immigrants.
To conclude this part, let’s quote the words of Shaykh Prof. Abdul Hadi Palazzi, a member of the Board of Directors of the Italian Muslim Association (AMI) as saying:
- “God wanted to give Avraham a double blessing, through Ishmael and through Isaac, and ordered that Ishmael’s descendents should live in the desert of Arabia and Isaac’s in Canaan.
The Qur’an recognizes the Land of Israel as the heritage of the Jews and it explains that, before the Last Judgment, Jews will return to dwell there. This prophecy has already been fulfilled.”
If we compare this picture with the former, it’s clearly seen that some parts of the territory of the 12 tribes of Israel have been occupied by Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt and those Arab immigrants who called themselves Palestinian people. If the Palestine truly belongs to Palestinian-Arabs then they should also raise protest to Jordan, Syria, etc. The sad thing is that majority people in the world including some politicians, social and religious leaders in Indonesia accused Israel as an aggressor state which robed the land of Palestinian-Arabs. What is needed here the most is a little of honesty. In an interview held by an Indonesian television station, in the evening of January 13, 2009, two scholar were present – Prof. Dr. B.A and Drs. H.B, MSi. While accusing Israel as an aggressor state, Drs. H.B, MSi made up a story of a Jewish Rabbi who once stated that, “the promise land is any land where Israelites can life peacefully.” This story not just fooled Indonesian people but also brought insult upon a Jewish Rabbi who is supposed to know the Hebrew Old Testament well, and betrayed his (Mr. H.B) own faith.
Israel in prophecy
Israel was scattered throughout the world
While looking at another evidence that the land of Canaan or the land of Palestine is an Israel’s inheritance, we will also uncover some truths about Israel in the past, in the present and in the future. Let’s start with Deuteronomy 28:63-67 (NIV) which says:
- 11. “Just as it pleased the LORD to make you prosper and increase in number, so it will please him to ruin and destroy you. You will be uprooted from the land you are entering to possess. 64 Then the LORD will scatter you among all nations, from one end of the earth to the other. There you will worship other gods—gods of wood and stone, which neither you nor your fathers have known. 65 Among those nations you will find no repose, no resting place for the sole of your foot. There the LORD will give you an anxious mind, eyes weary with longing, and a despairing heart. 66 You will live in constant suspense, filled with dread both night and day, never sure of your life. 67 In the morning you will say, “If only it were evening!” and in the evening, “If only it were morning!”-because of the terror that will fill your hearts and the sights that your eyes will see.”
After that prophecy of Moses, the prophet Ezekiel also predicted this situation where God said:
- 12. “I dispersed them among the nations, and they were scattered through the countries; I judged them according to their conduct and their actions.” (Ezekiel 36:19 NIV)
Take a look at the term, ‘be uprooted from the land you are entering to possess,’ which also prove that Israel had once settled on the land of their own – the land of Palestine. But because of their disobedient, God took them off their land and spread them all over the globe where they had to live a very unpleasant life. The above prophecy had been fulfilled.
Israel returns and became a distinct nation
After being dispersed for about two centuries, loosing it’s identity and was wiped out from the book of history as a nation, Israel came back to it’s very own land, Palestine, becoming a free nation, united, distinct and respectful – May 14, 1948 (5 Iyar, 5708 – in Hebrew’s calendar). This miraculous phenomenon took place not by human power, neither Israel nor any country which support the process of returning to Zion know as Zionism, but by the powerful hand of God. Not a single nation or country has ever had such experience. Zionism is God’s own program and here is the proof (notice that God use the term ‘your own land’:
- 13. “For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land.”(Ezekiel 36:24 NIV)
The land of Israel will be confiscated by surrounding nations
- 14. “therefore, O mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Sovereign LORD : This is what the Sovereign LORD says to the mountains and hills, to the ravines and valleys, to the desolate ruins and the deserted towns that have been plundered and ridiculed by the rest of the nations around you- 5 this is what the Sovereign LORD says: In my burning zeal I have spoken against the rest of the nations, and against all Edom, for with glee and with malice in their hearts they made my land their own possession so that they might plunder its pastureland.” (Ezekiel 36:4-5)
Israel’s recent situation as is shown by the second picture above is the fulfillment of this prophecy. Read Ezekiel 35 – 39 and you will get the whole picture. It is not just that Israel’s land will be confiscated by the surrounding nations but it’s been predicted that those nations are the descendants of Edom and Ishmael which is the Arabs.
Hadn’t they ever said this to Israel? (two nations and countries = Israel and Judah)
- 15. “‘Because you have said, “These two nations and countries will be ours and we will take possession of them,” even though I the LORD was there, (Ezekiel 35:10 NIV)
Perpetual hatred against Israel
- 16. “Because thou hast had a perpetual hatred, and hast shed the blood of the children of Israel by the force of the sword in the time of their calamity, in the time that their iniquity had an end: ((Ezekiel 35:11 KJV)
- 17. “therefore as surely as I live, declares the Sovereign LORD, I will treat you in accordance with the anger and jealousy you showed in your hatred of them and I will make myself known among them when I judge you. (Ezekiel 35:11 NIV)
By this Word alone we can be sure that the Arab-Israel’s long lasting conflict was not ignited by the land or territorial dispute but was originated in a perpetual one-sided hatred of the descendants of Edom and Ishmael towards the Jews – Israel. It is God Himself that declares that!
to the 2nd part