Wait, wait, hear me out. According to certain traditional Christian thought, the land that Israel now occupies is at least in part the land that God has promised them.According to gotquestions.org:
With Genesis 15:18 and Joshua 1:4 in mind, the land God gave to Israel included everything from the Nile river in Egypt to Lebanon (North to South) and everything from the Mediterranean Sea to the Euphrates River (West to East). So, what land has God stated belongs to Israel? All of the land modern Israel currently possesses, plus all of the land of the Palestinians (the West Bank and Gaza), plus some of Egypt and Syria, plus all of Jordan, plus some of Saudi Arabia and Iraq. Israel currently possesses only a fraction of the land God has promised.
That’s a lot of land. For most of the last two thousand years, they didn’t occupy it (if they ever truly did). The only reason they have the part of the land they do now is because of some degree of luck and a whole lot of money. If God wanted them to have it back, all of it back, now wouldn’t he make it happen? And under what circumstances would he make that happen?
I have to ask myself, with some degree of tongue in cheek, that if I as a Christian believed those things then I’d say that God will give it back to them in one shot and he’d do it when they were obedient. As it stands they still aren’t recognizing the true Messiah (as Christians understand it) and until they do why would God reward them? If he did extend them grace, something the God of the Old Testament did do from time to time, why would he do it by half measures? I don’t think so. Of course, the joke here is that none of us has any idea what exactly God would do here, so we need to stop pretending that we do.
I say that we should leave any amount of theology, good or bad, out of the equation. I think that if this whole thing is to work out, both parties need to come back to the negotiating table and let go of their death grips on those things they hold sacrosanct. This whole thing is a nearly perfect example of what is plaguing DC right now, the unwillingness to compromise. It won’t get either party anywhere and leaves them no option other than to try and make the other party look as bad as possible to win some sort of sympathy vote (oh and in the case of Israel/Palestine, buckets of blood).
As Christians it’s our job to make peace as best we can. If we as a country are to be involved in this decision on whether or not to give them statehood, then I believe it behooves us as Christians (if we’re going to be involved at all) to move things in the direction of peace. Denying Palestinians what they want and supporting Israel’s every move hasn’t done that. I’m not saying that we should cave in to the Palestinian people, but true peacemaking can’t happen if things continue apace. Giving them statehood strikes me as the only clear option for peace to “break out”. I’m willing to be proven wrong.
This post was inspired by a previous post on this debate from a few years ago. It sparked some excellent debate and I hope this will.