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A biblical basis for the state of Israel?

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Pro Israeli apologists often like to appeal to their faith and Bible to try and legitimize their rights to the land of Palestine, the biblical basis to their Zionism.

According to them, the Bible proves that the Jewish people were the first people on the land, and as such, the land belongs to them, after all as the saying goes, finder’s keepers, right?

Well even from a biblical basis, pro-Israeli apologists have no case for such an argument, because if anyone reads the Bible they will find that 1) the Jews were not the first inhabitants of the land, 2) the Jews were not even on the land before the ancestors of the Arabs.

So the aim of this article will be to establish the 2 above points. So let’s start with establishing the first point, that the Jewish people were not the first inhabitants of the land, and that other people were already living in the area. For this, we go to Genesis 15:17-21 which says:

When the sun had set and darkness had fallen, a smoking firepot with a blazing torch appeared and passed between the pieces. On that day the Lord made a covenant with Abram and said, “To your descendants I give this land, from the Wadiof Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates— the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites.”

So according to these verses, God said he would give the land to Abraham and his descendants, but as one can clearly note, the passages also go on to state that other peoples and nations already inhabited the land. We can count at least ten other nations that were already living in the area!

Our next reference comes from Exodus 13:4-5 which says:

Today, in the month of Aviv, you are leaving. When the Lord brings you into the land of the Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Hivites and Jebusites—the land he swore to your ancestors to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey—you are to observe this ceremony in this month

Once again, the passages clearly show that other peoples already inhabited the land; at least 5 other nations are listed in these passages as already living in the land.

Now we could spend all day quoting the several other passages that make it clear that other people were already living on the land of Palestine before any Jewish nation existed there. One can simply open up the book of Deuteronomy, all the wars and Moses fought in the land of Palestine, obviously for Moses to be fighting other people and nations, it means those people and nations were already living on the land!

So point 1 has been clearly established, the Jews were not the first people on the land, several other nations and tribes were already on the land long before the Jews ever got there.

We move on to point 2, that in fact it was the Arab predecessor who was there before the Jewish-Israelite predecessor. As we all know, Abraham is often called the father of Jews and Muslims, the father of Jews and Arabs. Now why is that? Because Abraham gave birth to 2 sons, Ishmael, and Isaac, the Arabs came and descended from Ishmael, while the Jews and Israelites descended from Isaac.

Now here’s the million-dollar question, who was born first? Ishmael, the father of the Arabs, or Isaac, the father of the Jews?  As we all know, the Bible says Ishmael was the first-born, followed by Isaac. Genesis 16 tells us about how Ishmael was born, before Isaac even existed, and then in Genesis 21 we are told about Isaac’s birth. So the father of the Arabs was living on the land of Palestine before the father of the Jews! So therefore the Jews were not even the first ones there before the Arabs!

Now pro-Israeli apologists will say but God said the land is for Isaac and his people, our response to that is we don’t care, that’s your theology, and your theology has nothing to do with us, we’re not bound by your theology. If pro-Israeli apologists resort to this argument that “God gave them the land” it also means they concede that they were the first ones on the land, because remember, that’s the original argument they start with, “we were first”, if they start preaching about God promising them the land, then they’ve obviously changed arguments since they’ve come to realize that they were never the first ones on the land, and so they just scream that “God gave us the land!”

Now pro-Israeli apologists will say but didn’t the Quran also say that the Israelites would be promised the land? Yes, the Quran did say that, but whoever said that when the Quran promised the Israelites the land, that it refers to modern day Israelis? Pro-Israeli apologists have obviously confused and conflated the two things together.

The Quran talks about a promise to the Israelites, not a promise to modern day Israelis from Europe that they’d be able to come to Palestine, kick the inhabitants of their land, and then occupy the ones that they weren’t able to expel.

But if we want to start talking theology, then let us explain the Quran’s theology concerning the land of Palestine and the promise to the Israelites. As mentioned, the Quran made a promise to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob etc. This promise was not to modern day people who called themselves Israelis.

The promise to the Israelites came with strict and clear conditions (also found in the Bible) that in order for them to be a part of the covenant, they’d have to follow God’s laws and ways, and if they didn’t, then the wrong doers would not be part of the covenant. In other terms, the Promised Land would be ruled by the law of God, it’d be a religious state, so we ask, is the modern state of Israel a religious state? Yes, it professes to be a Jewish state, but several of its laws are secular, and several of the biblical Torah laws are ignored and not followed. So therefore per the Quran and even the Bible, the modern state of Israel fails this major requirement of the covenant, and hence their not part of the covenant.

Secondly, per Islamic theology, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob (peace be upon them all) and the Israelites were Muslim in faith, so if these men and their followers were alive today, they would be followers of Islam and the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and so the state of Israel would be an Islamic-Muslim state! When God made the promise to the Israelites, he was making it to people considered to be Muslims, followers of God’s true message and laws, we believe the same God who made the promise to the Israelites later revealed himself to the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

Now pro-Israeli apologists will reject of all this, but that’s the point, they can’t quote the Quran when it suits them, such as talking about how Allah promised the Israelites the land, then simply disconnect it from it’s Islamic theology and context. In other words, it’s extremely dubious to try and show the Quran as a support of Zionism when it clearly is not. The Quranic promise to the Israelites has nothing to do with the modern state of Israel or the beliefs of its proponents.

As mentioned, the modern state of Israel is not even the legitimately part of the biblical covenant, because according to the covenant of God, its followers would have to follow the law, and if they didn’t, the covenant would be null and void:

See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse— the blessing if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today; the curse if you disobey the commands of the Lord your God and turn from the way that I command you today by following other gods, which you have not known. When the Lord your God has brought you into the land you are entering to possess, you are to proclaim on Mount Gerizim the blessings, and on Mount Ebal the curses. (Deuteronomy 11:26-29)

So according to God, his covenant was both a blessing and curse, a blessing if they followed his laws, and a curse if they didn’t while also turning to other gods. We ask, does modern day Israel follows Gods laws? What part of holding gay parades in Tel Aviv following God’s covenant?

The same message is repeated against in Deuteronomy 28:

If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. All these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God: You will be blessed in the city and blessed in the country. The fruit of your womb will be blessed, and the crops of your land and the young of your livestock—the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks. Your basket and your kneading trough will be blessed. You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out. The Lord will grant that the enemies who rise up against you will be defeated before you. They will come at you from one direction but flee from you in seven. The Lord will send a blessing on your barns and on everything you put your hand to. The Lord your God will bless you in the land he is giving you. The Lord will establish you as his holy people, as he promised you on oath, if you keep the commands of the Lord your God and walk in obedience to him. Then all the peoples on earth will see that you are called by the name of the Lord, and they will fear you. The Lord will grant you abundant prosperity—in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground—in the land he swore to your ancestors to give you. The Lord will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none. The Lord will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom. Do not turn aside from any of the commands I give you today, to the right or to the left, following other gods and serving them. However, if you do not obey the Lord your God and do not carefully follow all his commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come on you and overtake you. (1-15)

So God makes it clear, that he must be followed, that’s part of the covenant, that’s part of the deal, if it’s not followed, then the covenant isn’t valid. So from a biblical basis, the modern state of Israel is hardly biblical justified in any sense. If anything, the modern state of Israel, biblically speaking, is cursed by God, for not following his laws and ways.

So one is left to wonder why any Zionist would appeal to the Bible for legitimacy, the Bible in fact is one of the greatest tools that delegitimizes the claims of Zionists who try to back their beliefs with theology, trying to assert that God supports them, when the Bible clearly says and shows the opposite.

Who knows, Yahweh may have been an anti-Semite?

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