This series I’ll probably post to occasionally, rather than all in one string.
In this series, I’ll list some of the reasons why I believe in the god of the Jews and Christians. The list is by no means exhaustive. The first one I’ll bring up is a prophecy.
“Therefore, behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when it shall no longer be said, ‘As the LORD lives who brought up the people of Israel out of the land of Egypt,’ but ‘As the LORD lives who brought up the people of Israel out of the north country and out of all the countries where he had driven them.’ For I will bring them back to their own land that I gave to their fathers.”
Jeremiah 16:14-15 (context)
This prophecy is coming true as we speak, despite the best efforts of filthy anti-Semites through the Middle East. In particular, the way in which Israel was established makes it pretty obvious that God made it happen, because without divine intervention, it couldn’t have. Here’s what happened:
In 1947, the UN released its plan for the partitioning of Palestine. Political and racial tensions were high, and it was pretty obvious that this was not going to end well. There were 2 main ethnicities in Palestine at the time:
- Arabs (~2/3 of population)
- Jews (~1/3 of population)
As far as I know, throughout all of history, racism has been the norm. Opposing racism is unusual. At the time, Anti-Semitism was so popular in Europe that Adolf Hitler got elected on a political platform which had anti-Semitism as 1 of its main planks. In addition, most of the non-Jews in Palestine were Muslims, and Muhammad’s attitudes toward the Jews became steadily more hostile as he realized that most of them rejected him as a prophet. This culminated in him expelling 2 of the 3 Jewish tribes in Medina, and massacring the third. His hatred – whether rooted in racism, religion, economics, or politics – was preserved in the Quran, and thus gives credibility to anti-Semitism in the eyes of Quran-believing Muslims. Here’s a detailed article on the Quran and anti-Semitism.
This does not necessarily mean that every Palestinian Arab was a bloodthirsty anti-Semite. If everyone who considered themselves followers of a religion believed and practiced everything that their religion taught, then no Christian would be a racist, because Jesus taught very strongly against it:
Of course, there are many Christians throughout history who have not followed this teaching of Jesus, whether from lack of knowledge, or outright rejection of it. Likewise, for Muslims, there are probably many who have never heard of this atrocity that Muhammad committed, and many who do know probably refuse to follow in his footsteps. This does not mean that Islam does not give license to anti-Semitism, it merely means that not everyone who considers himself a Muslim believes the Quran on this matter. Also, because the Quran does teach anti-Semitism, many of the most devout Muslims will be anti-Semites.
The anti-Semites among the Arabs opposed the creation of any Jewish state because of their evil racist hatred of the Jews. When the UN’s palestinian partition plan was released, the Arabs rejected it. Soon after, they started rioting. Within a few months, the conflict began to look more like a war than a series of riots. Normally, one would expect that the majority would win. But in this case, the minority won. It was a huge upset. Furthermore, the majority was terrified of the minority, and some of them fled from the land that would soon be ruled by Israel. Of those who didn’t flee on their own, many were driven from their homes by the victorious Jewish forces. The terror among the Palestinian Arabs reminds me of the terror among the inhabitants of Canaan (Palestine) back when the Jews first conquered it.
If this was the end of the war, the Palestinian Arabs would’ve still had land on which to build a state. The Jews got busy building theirs, and in 1948, Israel declared itself a nation. But the day after, several members of the Arab League attacked:
- Saudi Arabia (token force)
As far as I can tell, there were 2 main reasons why they attacked:
- Greed for land
Jordan, in particular, appears to have played a double game. While its king – King Abdullah – appeared to his fellow Arabs to be acting out of anti-Semitism – defending his fellow Arabs from the Jewish minority – he seemed to be mainly interested in conquering what is today called the West Bank. The very name is a shortened form of the name that Abdullah gave his new territory: the West Bank of Jordan.
The Arab League appeared to have a huge advantage, since they had far more heavy weapons. But their advantage evaporated before their eyes. They didn’t trust each other, and they were poorly organized. As the war continued, the Jews became ever stronger. The Arab League’s armies found much stiffer resistance than they expected, and their morale broke. 1 tiny country defeated 6 others, each much bigger than itself.
In a fascinating twist, the people who started the war paid the highest price. When members of the Arab League invaded Israel, they also invaded the land that would have formed a new Palestinian Arab state. After the war, they held on to that land. Many Palestinian Arabs were scattered to the surrounding countries:
- Jordan, including the West Bank
- Egypt, including the Gaza Strip
The countries that the Palestinian Arabs fled to didn’t let them assimilate. The only place for them was the huge refugee camps that were set up to keep them from dying. Many of them and their descendents remain in refugee camps today.
How can this be? In all of history, when else has such a thing happened?
- The god of the Jews prophesied thousands of years before that this would happen
- They retained their identity despite widespread dispersion and intense persecution
- They returned to the land that their god had promised them
- While they were still a minority, they defeated the majority
- Then with little time to rest and prepare, they defeated nations far larger than themselves
- They won both without resorting to a long guerrilla war, but defeated their would-be conquerors in battle
The odds were overwhelmingly against them, but their would-be conquerors simply couldn’t win. Twice more, the Arab League tried to conquer Israel, and twice more they were repulsed: in 1968, then in 1973.
The prophecy I quoted is coming true even as I write. Israel stubbornly remains on the map, and Jews continue to pour into it. When Jeremiah made the prophecy, Israel was a little fish in a big pond, and would soon be swallowed up by Babylon. Anyone at the time would’ve thought that Israel was gone forever, yet the prophecy still came true. The Palestinian Arabs and the Arab League could not prevent it, even though they out-manned and out-gunned the Israelis. The only reasonable explanation is that there still is a god in Israel, and he keeps his promises. And a god who does such wonders in modern times is a god worth believing in.