What is the significance of Israel’s return to the promised land?

The Bible clearly shows that the modern state of Israel and the biblical Israel are two distinct realities. Zionism emerged in the 1890s in Europe as a mostly secular Jewish movement working to create a safe homeland and to fulfill the dream of bringing back the Jews to the land of their birth.

In the Bible, the Promised Land was conditional on the obedience of Israel to God:

“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 upon you and overtake you: You will be cursed in the city and cursed in the country… The LORD will cause you to be defeated before your enemies. You will come at them from one direction but flee from them in seven… You will be uprooted from the land you are entering to possess. Then the Lord will scatter you among all nations, from one end of the earth to the other” (Deuteronomy 28:15-16, 25, 63-64).

God specified through the blessings and curses that repentance is always the condition of return to the land of Israel (Deuteronomy 30:1–3):

“Do not defile yourselves in any of these ways, because this is how the nations that I am going to drive out before you became defiled. Even the land was defiled; so I punished it for its sin, and the land vomited out its inhabitants. But you must keep my decrees and my laws… And if you defile the land, it will vomit you out as it vomited out the nations that were before you” (Leviticus 18:24-28).

The Israelites’ claim to the land was conditional on obedience, and if they were deported from the land in the first century because of their disobedience, how can the Zionists claim today that they have a legal right to the land when they have crucified Jesus and openly insist on the rejection of the Messiah? Therefore, the claim that the founding of the State of Israel in 1948, the capture of Jerusalem in 1967, and their return to the land was orchestrated by God, has no Biblical foundation.

For this reason, many Christians today reject the theology that it was God’s hand that brought the Jewish people back to Palestine while they are still in unbelief, since that was why they were expelled out of it in the first place. Further, the methods that Israel has used to occupy the land and dominate the Palestinians do not match the character of a God‐fearing nation.

Israel’s return to the promised land has no biblical significance but only a political implication.

In His service,
BibleAsk Team

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