ISRAEL: WHOSE LAND IS IT?
William Andrew Dillard
Parson to Person
Visits to middle eastern countries early in my ministry empowered teaching, preaching, and writing about those places. They live in reminiscence helping certain lessons to come alive. There is a story of one witnessing occasion in Israel which has underscored an important truth through the years. If readers thought by these lines I was going to share it, they are correct.
Things were so politically sticky that there had to be an Israeli guide on board the vehicle in charge of destinations and information. But, when in predominately Arab places, an Arab guide had to be in charge. Sometimes, both would be present when travel included both areas.
The Arab guide proudly spoke of the significance of monuments and places. He also emphasized that this land belonged to his Arab people since they were the descendants of Abraham.
When the Jewish guide was in charge, he spoke of the marvelous advancement his people had given the land since 1948. He went on to say that this land belonged to the Jewish people since it was their long ancestral home, and it was given to them by Abraham through Isaac. It was interesting.
In a brief period of silence, I spoke to them asking again about ownership of the land. Each reaffirmed such ownership as they had previously stated. They were both wrong. The truth of the matter is that the land was promised to the seed of Abraham through Isaac. And in the words of Paul, God said not seeds as of many, but as of one, and that seed is Christ Jesus. Therefore those who are in Christ are the inheritors of the land. Well, one can imagine: that bit of theology went over like a ton of bricks crossing the Atlantic. But it made for a most interesting and provocative conversation. perhaps no one had brought that to their attention, at least in that way. But it is nevertheless true.
The time is not far away when the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ. His church which has borne the heat of the age in good testimony will inherit with Him, moreover we shall be the inheritance to Him as well.
A number of scriptures in the Old Testament, particularly in Isaiah speak of the details of that marvelous Day of our Lord. In that day, the full promise of boundaries will be given to God’s people. Additionally, they shall rule and reign with Him in a curse-removed earth for a thousand years of peace that will bring unparalleled prosperity and goodness to the whole earth, and to the myriads of people multiplied on it. It will be an environment free of satanic influence and extended human life. All will enjoy astronomical agricultural abundance. In that day from pole to pole, and wherever east meets west, the land will be freed from the curse of sin, and blessed for everyone! “Even so, come, Lord Jesus!