A small strip of land on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea is the most contested piece of real estate on our planet. That land is Israel. It is the land God has given to the Jewish people, in perpetuity, according to His irrevocable promise.
What Is That Promise?
In Genesis 15:18, we read that God said to Abram: "To your offspring I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates, the land of the Kenites, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim, the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites and the Jebusites."
A further outline of the area to be given to the Israelites was clearly stated to Joshua just before they entered the promised land. Joshua 1:4: "...from the Negev wilderness in the south to the Lebanon mountains in the north, from the Euphrates River in the east to the Mediterranean Sea in the west, including all the land of the Hittites."
Who Made Then Promise?
God had called Abram to leave his home, (Genesis 12:1), and travel to THE land that He would show him. In Genesis 15:8 Abram questioned God: "How am I to know that I shall possess it?"
In verse 18, we are told that God made a covenant with Abram. This covenant was an UNCONDITIONAL promise made by God.
On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, "To your offspring I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates,"
Who Is The Promise To?
The promise was spoken to Abram in Genesis 15. It was stated again to his son Isaac in Genesis 26:3: "Sojourn in this land, and I will be with you and will bless you, for to you and to your offspring I will give all these lands, and I will establish the oath that I swore to Abraham your father."
God spoke again to Abraham's grandson Jacob - Genesis 28:13: "And behold, the LORD stood above it and said, "I am the LORD, the God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac. The land on which you lie I will give to you and to your offspring.""
Why Was The Promise Of The Land Made?
God promised the land to Abraham and his decedents that they may have a home. Following their exodus from Egypt, the Israelites took possession of the land.
This piece of land which was occupied by a number of tribes was known as Cannan. God drove the Canaanites were from their land as a punishment, because they were wicked:
Not because of your righteousness or the uprightness of your heart are you going in to possess their land, but because of the wickedness of these nations the LORD your God is driving them out from before you, and that he may confirm the word that the LORD swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob."
Is The Promised Land Still Relevant Today?
The land was given to Abraham and his decedents. The promise spoken has never been rescinded in either Old or New Testaments; it stands because of the oath God swore by Himself on the matter.
David refers back to the nature of this Land covenant in Psalm 105, affirming it to be an "everlasting covenant."
8 He remembers his covenant forever, the promise he made, for a thousand generations, 9 the covenant he made with Abraham, the oath he swore to Isaac.10 He confirmed it to Jacob as a decree, to Israel as an EVERLASTING COVENANT: 11 "To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion you will inherit.""
In Deuteronomy 4:40, Moses tells the Israelites what God has said: "Keep his decrees and commands, which I am giving you today, so that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may live long in the land the LORD your God gives you for all time."
Living in the land was conditional in as much as they were to be obedient. Their disobedience meant that God has allowed them to be temporarily driven from the land. However, the promise of the land and its ownership is not conditional.
There has been a continual presence in the land from the time of Joshua to the present. Even during exile, a small presence was maintained over the centuries.
The promise still stands today and will do for all time. Jerusalem is the place to which Yeshua, the Saviour of all who accept him, both Jew and Gentile, will return.
The enemy knows that God has given the land of Israel to His people. This one area of the earth is so contested, challenged and sought after is because the enemy seeks to destroy and invalidate the plans of God and validity of His word.
However, be it known: The Lord will return to Jerusalem, unto the people whom He covenanted the Land to.
This is what the LORD says: "I will return to Zion and dwell in Jerusalem. Then Jerusalem will be called the Faithful City, and the mountain of the LORD Almighty will be called the Holy Mountain.""