Who Owns Palestine Part VI: The position of the Jews



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Who Owns Palestine?

Part VI: The Position of the Jews (Last of series) Baptist Bible Tribune,

Dec. 20, 1957

 The last article closed with pointing out that the Prime Minister of Israel, Mr. David Ben Gurion, believes the God of the Bible to be a myth, does not accept the Old Testament as the Word of God, and blames Christianity, and very especially the Apostle Paul, for a great measure of the calamities that befell the Jews in the first century, which resulted in their being scattered throughout the earth, where they have been wanderers and strangers for 2000 years.

Mr. Ben Gurion’s position is the position of Zionism.  In addition to Mr. Ben Gurion’s book, “Rebirth and Destiny of Israel,” from which I quoted, there are two other authoritative Jewish books which reveal the attitude of Zionism toward God and the Old Testament: “Voice of Israel,” by Abba Eban (Horizon Press, N.Y., 1957, and “Israel and Her Neighbors,” N.Y., 1956.

At this time Mr. Eban is the Jewish Ambassador to the U.S. and head of his countries Permanent Delegation to the U.N.  He was born in South Africa in 1915 and was brought up in England.  He specialized in Oriental languages at Cambridge, was graduated with honors, and served on the faculty of Pembroke College, and Cambridge University, as an authority on Hebrew, Arabic and Persian literature.

A deeply educated and highly civilized man, Mr. Eban is unexcelled as a powerful, convincing, and effective expositor and advocate of the Jewish State.  His book, composed of addresses he has made in many places, ranks with the very greatest of contemporary apologetic literature.

In Mr. Eban’s brilliant book there is no real recognition of God and His plans for Israel.  There is one exception.  On page 155 he does say that “The ingathering of the Exiles in modern Israel also represents the most precise and tangible fulfillment of Prophecy available to all those in all Faiths who accept the literal truth of the Bible promises ‘and I will bring them out from the people and gather them from the countries and will bring them again into their own land and I will feed them upon the mountains of Israel, by the streams and in all the inhabitable places of the country’.” But it is the Hebrew “mind,” the Hebrew “spirit,” and the Hebrew “will”, according to Mr. Eban, that is really responsible for Hebrew progress.  Whether or not he intended it so, Mr. Eban’s book is far more enthusiastic about Mr. Truman and the late Chaim Wiszmann than it is about the God of Israel.

Mr. Elath is the Israeli Ambassador to the Court of St. James’s.  His book is composed of a series of lectures he delivered at Brandeis University, Waltham, Massachusetts, in April-May 1956.  Mr. Elath does say that the Jews going to Palestine “are not invaders or intruders, but exiles returning home to the land of their Kings and their Prophets, a land whence they sprang, and where their forefathers lived and wrought before them” (page 41).

But then Mr. Ben Gurion believes that.

In none of these authoritative, eloquent and powerful books is there any real recognition of the God of Israel, or any reference to the covenant God made with Abraham.  And, most incredible of all, there is hardly any mention at all of sin and atonement.  All of that is completely ignored.

Zionism rejects the God of Israel, the God of the Prophets, the God of the land.  Zionism does not base its claim to Palestine on the covenant God made with Abraham.  Zionism refuses to admit that the dispersion of the Jews was an act of God because of the sin of the Jews in rejecting their own Messiah.  Zionism has no consciousness of sin and therefore feels no need of a personal Messiah to atone for sin.  Zionism is atheistic, secular, political.

And Zionism represents but a small percentage of the Jews of the world.  In the U.S. Zionism represents but some 500,000 Jews (1957) out of a population of 5 million.

And the bitterest opponents of Zionism are non-Zionist Jews. 

And the bitterest opponents of Zionism are non-Zionist Jews.

Zionism, rejecting the God who gave Israel the Land, rejecting the grace which was responsible for the gift, has no valid claims to Palestine---none more than the Arabs.

There is a sense, of course, in which the hand of God is in Zionism----the sense in which His hand is in all history.  “Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain.” (Ps 76:10).   The lot is cast into the lap; and the whole disposing thereof is of the Lord” (Prov. 16:33).

And the Star of David unfurled over that land, and the revival of the Hebrew language as the basic working tool, is a fulfillment of Bible prophecy.  Bible prophecy says that secular, atheistic Jews will make a deal with Antichrist (as Herzl tried to make with anybody at hand).  How could such a tremendous event occur except that in the meantime the secular, atheistic Jews are back in Palestine and in control of the government?

I do not at all agree with those who hold that Zionism is the fulfillment of those great and moving prophecies of the final regathering of Israel.  I do not at all agree with those who hold that no Bible prophecy is being fulfilled today.  I do not agree with those naïve people who hold that in this world everything is white.  I do not agree with those dejected people who hold that in this world everything is all black.  I do heartily agree with those who hold that everything is freckled.  Which means that we have to study, think, discriminate.  That’s hard work. 

And nobody much, especially in religion, is dying of hard work. So much for Zionism.  What about the rest of the Jews?  They reject Christ.  And what does the Bible say about the absolute authority of Jesus Christ?     

Heb 11:1  Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 2  For by it the elders obtained a good report. 3  Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear. 

Nobody can bypass the authority of Jesus Christ.  Mr. David Ben Gurion has the same obligation to humble himself before Jesus Christ and confess Him as Lord and Saviour that everybody else has.  And every Jew------Orthodox, Reformed, Nothing------has the same obligation as Mr. Ben Gurion. 

What is happening in Palestine today is going to culminate in the Great Tribulation.  

For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.   And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened.  (Mat 24:21 f.) 

In the midst of that awful time of calamity there will be, there in Palestine, a remnant of Jews that will refuse to acknowledge Antichrist as God.  All the powers of hell will be let loose on this remnant.  There will be but one direction in which they will be able to look for help-----UP!  

And He [Messiah] is going to hear and answer their prayer.  And pray as no Jews have ever prayed on this earth. 

Oh that thou wouldest rend the heavens, that thou wouldest come down, that the mountains might flow down at thy presence,” (Isa 64:1).                  And He [Messiah] is going to hear and answer that prayer.  He is going to rend the heavens, and He is going to come down, and the mountains are going to literally flow down at his presence.  “And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory”  (Mat 24:30).        

His feet will touch the Mount of Olives. “And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.”  Zec 14:4          

And that remnant of course will see Him.  And they will see the wounds in His hands.  “And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.” Zec 13:6          Of course they will fall before Him.  What else could they do?  “And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other” Mat 24:31.  

That will be the beginning of the great, world-wide gathering. 

Eze 20:40  For in mine holy mountain, in the mountain of the height of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, there shall all the house of Israel, all of them in the land, serve me: there will I accept them, and there will I require your offerings, and the firstfruits of your oblations, with all your holy things. 41  I will accept you with your sweet savour, when I bring you out from the people, and gather you out of the countries wherein ye have been scattered; and I will be sanctified in you before the heathen. 42   And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall bring you into the land of Israel, into the country for the which I lifted up mine hand to give it to your fathers.  43  And there shall ye remember your ways, and all your doings, wherein ye have been defiled; and ye shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for all your evils that ye have committed. 44  And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have wrought with you for my name's sake, not according to your wicked ways, nor according to your corrupt doings, O ye house of Israel, saith the Lord GOD. 

        And when all the tribes of scattered, distressed Israel are back into their own land, by the omnipotent hand of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and there become “one stick” (Ez 37:17), under one Shepherd, something truly wonderful is going to happen to the whole tormented earth and all its weary peoples.  Springtime’s sun will rise, the grip of all but endless winter will no more be afraid, the wild beast will become quiet, and no sparrow will again fall to the ground.  Peace---world-wide, universal---peace with no anxiety about tomorrow’s uncertainties. Yesterday’s failures will have been squared up, and there will no longer be any uncertainties. 

It doesn’t make sense?  God in swaddling clothes doesn’t make sense either, does it?  And as to the rebellious Jew near you, can you be absolutely certain he won’t be one of those who will refuse to bow down to Antichrist?  Can you be absolutely certain that when the awful hour of the great and decisive test comes, he will not have more faith and courage than ever could be found on the whole of your family tree?  

In view of guilt we all share, of bestowed grace none of us could buy, of deserved punishment we all have escaped, of the calamities that have befallen the people who gave us the Bible and its Christ, we ought to be humble, sympathetic and prayerful people in these strange, ominous, tremendous days in which we are living and dying.  And very especially so, until it can be decided who of us should cast the first stone.  

There is universal agreement among the good and discriminating students of our country’s history that all that is noble, pure, kind and good in our national life came together in the lonely, sweet-spirited Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address on March 4, 1865, as only American kinsmen can fight among themselves.  “Both read the same Bible, pray to the same God: and each invokes His aid against the other . . . The prayers of both could not be answered; that of neither has been answered fully.”

        “.  . . so still it must be said ‘the judgments of the Lord, are true and righteous altogether’.”             And so, as for him---for whom the assassin’s pistol has already been loaded---         “With malice toward none; with charity for all . . .”                                                               

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