Truth, Understanding, Insight

A Land that Devours: Isarel at 61

14th May 2009, hej


Remembering May 14, 1948. Today is an anniversary of the declaration of the state of Israel. A time to remember why it was established. To remember why the call went out for a place where Jews could freely be Jews. A place for the people no nation on earth wanted.

The people no one wanted

Whatever Zionism may be accused of, we must understand that Zionism only existed because of a deep need.

There are two words that once went together 'wandering' and 'Jew'. They did not wander because they liked it. They were forced to move on by persecution. The most dramatic movement came in 1492 when Spain forced the huge numbers of Spanish Jews either to convert to Catholicism or be expelled. A massive movement of over 160,000 people occurred. They ended up in Algiers, the Americas, Egypt, Tripoli, France, Holland, England, Scandinavia, Hamburg, Italy, Morocco and the bulk of them, approx. 90,000 to Turkey. This movement, though large, was not new. England had expelled its Jews in 1290, France in 1391, Austria in 1421, and following Spain's lead Portugal also expelled it's Jews in 1492.

To understand this we can read about it in the Jewish Law of Moses. This is their own history written even before they were a nation. Once they, as a nation, did not keep the law and were removed from their Promised Land then it was declared by Moses that this would be their fate,

And the LORD shall scatter you among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other; and there you shall serve other gods, which neither thou nor your fathers have known... And among these nations shall thou find no ease, neither shall the sole of thy foot have rest: but the LORD shall give thee there a trembling heart, and failing of eyes, and sorrow of mind: And your life shall hang in doubt before you; and you shall fear day and night, and shall have none assurance of your life: In the morning you shall say, Would God it were evening! and at evening you shall say, Would God it were morning! for the fear of your heart wherewith thou shall fear, and for the sight of your eyes which you shall see. (Deuteronomy 28:64-67)

But this was only the beginning. For a while after the French Revolution it looked like there may have been some freedom of religion. But it seemed anti-Semitism was stronger that the newly found ideas of 'liberty', 'equality' and 'fraternity'. The treatment of Dreyfus and the resulting public expressions of anti-Jewish sentiment in France alerted even the liberal assimilated Jews that all was not well, leading to the official birth of political Zionism with the aim of self-determination for the Jewish people, by which they meant a chance to freely be Jewish without fear.


But the Jews themselves carried their history already written. In their prophets Jeremiah gives some more detail following on from Moses.

Therefore will I cast you out of this land into a land that ye know not, neither ye nor your fathers; and there shall ye serve other gods day and night; where I will not show you favour.
Therefore, behold, the days come, says the LORD, that it shall no more be said, “The LORD lives, that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt”; But, “The LORD lives, that brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north, and from all the lands where he had driven them”:
and I will bring them again into their land that I gave unto their fathers. Behold, I will send for many fishers, says the LORD, and they shall fish them; and after will I send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain, and from every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks. ....
O LORD, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come unto thee from the ends of the earth, and shall say, “Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit”. (Jeremiah 16:13-19)

At this time, just as Jeremiah had said, many Evangelical Protestants understood that the Living God of Israel had declared he would bring the children of Israel from out of the nations to their land that I gave unto their fathers”. They helped “the fishers”, the Zionists. (A fish is still living when caught).

No-where to go from the hunter

But there was more to come. For next comes the “hunters” who kill. Even as the desire grew for a homeland in what was then Palestine, the opportunity to go there was closing. The sparsely populated, almost treeless, barren land of Palestine of the late 1800s by the 1930's had half a million Jewish inhabitants and a million Arabs and was becoming more prosperous. But as it became desirable for even the assimilated Jews to leave from Germany, Austria-Hungary and the countries influenced by Germany in 1939, it was becoming impossible to enter Palestine, or anywhere else.

There were refugees even before WW2 with nowhere to go, with a famous case of 70 left on a rock in the Danube between Germany and Czecho-Slovakia (eventually they were given entry into Palestine, as no-one else wanted them). Jews were not really welcome in the 1930's in Britain, France or the USA. Britain sent over 2,000 back to Germany in the 1930s, although it was known Nazi policy would send them to concentration camps. A Swedish proposal to rescue children with United States help was replied to by a US state department official,

“Any rescue concentrating on Jewish children might antagonise the Nazis and prevent other possible co-operative acts.”

The president of USA talked of funding for research into re-settlement for Jewish refugees but did nothing about it. The USA limited its number of visas even, to at least 50 German Jewish students who had won scholarships. The President was unwilling to endorse a Bill in 1939 which would have permitted 20,000 German Jewish children to enter the United States. This behaviour is in keeping with not wishing to antagonise Hitler and the Arab nations, who by this time were known to have oil.

What happens next is prefigured also in the Jewish people's own book. The prophet Ezekiel is shown.

The hand of the LORD was upon me, and carried me out in the spirit of the LORD, and set me down in the midst of the valley which was full of bones, (Ezekiel 37:1)

How could he have seen this image, which became reality only in recent times, by his own thinking? Ezekiel is asked,

“Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord GOD, thou knowest”. (Ezekiel 37:3)

A nation not re-born, but resurrected, 1948

And then the bones live,

Again he said unto me, “..O ye dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. Thus saith the Lord GOD unto these bones; Behold,.. I will lay sinews upon you, and will bring up flesh upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and ye shall live; and ye shall know that I am the LORD”. (Ezekiel 37:4-6)
Therefore prophesy and say unto them, “Thus says the Lord GOD; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel”. (Ezekiel 37:12)

After 3 years of living death from 1945 they are voted by the United Nations to become a nation,

And say unto them, “Thus says the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the nations, where they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land: And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel;
and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all”: (Ezekiel 37:21-22)

The people that nobody wanted in 1939, that died, not because of war, but because of who they were, that seemed without hope of a nation still in 1945, became a nation in 1948. From being 'dried bones' they 'lived'. As yet they have no king.

Blessing and cursing

The Jewish Bible told us beforehand of their fate, but this does not endorse being part of it or causing it. Have a close look at the fate of those who mistreat these people.

For thus saith the Lord GOD; “Because you have clapped thine hands.. and rejoiced in heart with all thy despite against the land of Israel; Behold, therefore I will stretch out mine hand upon you, and will deliver thee for a spoil to the nations; and I will cut you off from the people.. I will destroy you; and you shall know that I am the LORD”. (Ezekiel 25:6-7)

And in case we miss it

“Because that Edom has dealt against the house of Judah by taking vengeance, and has greatly offended, and revenged himself upon them; Therefore thus says the Lord GOD; I will also stretch out mine hand upon Edom, and will cut off man and beast from it; and I will make it desolate from Teman”. (Ezekiel 25:12-13)

Petra today is testament to the end of that nation. The Bible may prophesy trouble for Israel but any individual or nation who curse the people will inherit their own destruction. Spain and Portugal when they expelled the Jews in 1492 inexplicably lost their greatness to others.

For more on The Holocaust

The Blessing of Freedom

We can see that the growth of Zionism was side by side with a tolerance for all religious diversity in many nations (but not all). Truly the work that was done in 1948 was not just for Jews. Since 1948 the many nations have been born from self determination the United Nations started with 50 nations and there are now 192! It's as if the ability Jews had to go to a place that welcomed them released the power of oppressors over all persecuted people in Europe. It is said despite all the hardship, by people that saw it, that those in Israel in 1948 clearly wore in their faces their freedom.

But there was more, as there was hate in the hearts of their Arab neighbours. Though the land was divided and part given to both. The Jews rejoiced in their small section, but the neighbouring Arab nation were unhappy and sought to remove them entirely. This hate spilled out into war. The war was declared, we must not forget, by the Arabs.

The result was 590,000 Arabs were displaced. The result was also that 838,00 Jews who had lived for centuries in Aden, Lebanon, Syria, Libya, Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia, Iraq, Algeria and Morocco were displaced as people, again, not wanted by their nations.

At 61 still others want to possess their ancient holy places

But now it is 61 years on. What is the future? It speaks of those who claim the ancient high (or holy) places as an enemy,

Thus says the Lord GOD; Because the enemy has said against you, “Aha, even the ancient high places are ours in possession”: (Ezekiel 36:2)

There are 2 groups that seek to own the ancient Holy places. So-called 'Christians' who locate a church on every ancient holy place and the Muslims who either have a Mosque there or a shrine. But to have them in possession is nothing. Listen to what Ezekiel says.

Therefore prophesy and say, Thus says the Lord GOD; “Because they have made you desolate, and swallowed you up on every side, that ye might be a possession unto the residue of the nations, and you are taken up in the lips of talkers, and are an infamy of the people:
Prophesy therefore concerning the land of Israel..Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I have spoken in my jealousy and in my fury, because ye have borne the shame of the nations:
Therefore thus says the Lord GOD; I have lifted up mine hand, Surely the nations that are about you, they shall bear their shame.
But you, O mountains of Israel, ye shall shoot forth.., and yield your fruit to my people of Israel; for they are at hand to come. For, behold, I am for you, and I will turn unto you, And I will multiply men upon you, all the house of Israel, even all of it: and the cities shall be inhabited, and the wastes shall be built: .. and I will settle you after your old estates, and will do better unto you than at your beginnings: and ye shall know that I am the LORD. (Ezekiel 36:3-11)

A tough reality: it's a nation that eats men

The prophets spoke of dispersal and persecution. They concealed nothing of the hard reality of how the hate of the nation of Israel is still leading to the death of people all over the world, due to terrorist violence directed at those who become involved with Israel.

Thus says the Lord GOD; Because they say unto you, “Your land devours up men, and has bereaved thy nations; Therefore you shall devour men no more..Neither will I cause men to hear in thee the shame of the nations any more, neither shall you bear the reproach of the people any more, neither shall thou cause your nations to fall any more”.

The issue of Israel today still 'devours men'. As this came true we may rely on the words this Prophet speaks. This nation has its future already written. And he speaks of a glorious end for Israel.

.. say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; “I do not this for your sakes, O house of Israel, but for mine holy name's sake”
..For I will take you from among the nations, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land. Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and...will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you:.. And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and you shall keep my judgments... And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and you shall be my people, and I will be your God.
Then shall you remember your own evil ways.. and shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities .. Not for your sakes do I this, says the Lord GOD, be it known unto you: be ashamed and confounded for your own ways, O house of Israel..

It's not about which nation (or religion) is more righteous, for no nation or person is totally just and perfect, it's about something much greater, Yahweh's holy name: because he will keep his promise to Abraham. And so he says,

the desolate land shall be tilled..And they shall say, “This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden; and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are become fenced, and are inhabited”. Then the nations that are left (who did not hate Israel and so were not destroyed) round about you shall know that I the LORD build the ruined places, and plant that that was desolate:..
Thus saith the Lord GOD; “I will yet for this be enquired of by the house of Israel, to do it for them; I will increase them ... As the holy flock, as the flock of Jerusalem in her solemn feasts; so shall the waste cities be filled with flocks of men: and they shall know that I am the LORD”. (Ezekiel 36:13-38)

The End

The end of events is that Jerusalem is to be glorious and her people a joy.

For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind. But be ye glad and rejoice for ever in that which I create: for, behold, I create Jerusalem a rejoicing, and her people a joy. And I will rejoice in Jerusalem, and joy in my people: and the voice of weeping shall be no more heard in her, nor the voice of crying. (Isaiah 65:17-19)

Not yet, for still the controversy over the Land has yet to devour more men of the nations. Has not the last 61 years shown that none but the Jewish people can hold that ancient land without hurt? When all know that only the God of Israel owns that land he promised to the fathers of Israel, then there will finally be peace. And that peace will be for all nations on the face of the earth.

A new Eden.

For more on Israel in the Bible

China, Burma and Isarel at 60

Israel as the Fig Tree

Israel as the Grape Vine


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