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HISTORY OF MODERN ZIONISM
According to scripture God promised the land that we know as Israel today, to the the seed of Abraham's son Isaac, for an everlasting possession through an everlasting covenant.
Genesis 17:7 And I will establish my covenant between me and thee and thy seed after thee in their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God unto thee, and to thy seed after thee. 8 And I will give unto thee, and to thy seed after thee, the land wherein thou art a stranger, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.
19 And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.
While there has been at least a remnant of Jews living in Israel continuously throughout thousands of years, the subject of this page is the expansion of Jews in Israel or modern Zionism, and its significance in the world today. As a result of 1200 years of Islamic control, Israel had been rendered a denuded, desertified, depopulated, barren, desolate wasteland by the early 1900s - perhaps just as prophesied - before the modern day increase of Jews in their land began. While the term "Zionism" wasn't coined until 1890, persecuted Jews were returning to their land from around the world in the early 19th century. This increase was anticipated by Christians through bible prophecy, centuries before the modern-day increase ever began.
No shortage of dishonest sites on the Internet, amusingly suggest that Zionism is the result of futurist doctrine, as if Jews were compelled to return to their land by a 19th century Christian eschatology, that was penned after their return had already begun! Let alone that Jews longed for their home during thousands of years of dispersion in Gentile lands, including prayers that specifically express that longing. Not surprisingly the "history" reported on many of these sites often doesn't go back further than 1890, when Nathan Birnbaum coined the term, as if Birnbaum had invented Zionism most of a century after Jews had begun to return to Israel!
Few things more aptly prove the existence of God, than the miraculous restoration of Jews to rule and reign over Israel - and particularly Jerusalem - as can even be confirmed mathematically, through two cross-confirming parallel problems that were assigned to us by prophecy, that span 2500 years. Please visit the dedicated page.
Desolation of Israel (URL)
In "A History of the Jews" Paul Johnson writes on page 321: "Between 1827 and 1839, largely through British efforts, the population of Jerusalem rose from 550 to 5,500 and in all Palestine it topped 10,000 - the real beginning of the Jewish return to the Promised Land. In 1838 Palmerston appointed the first western vice-consul in Jerusalem, W.T. Young, and told him 'to afford protection to the Jews generally'."
From Jewish History.org - Samuel Salant 1816 - 1909: "The son-in-law of Joseph Salant. He arrived in Jerusalem in 1841 and proceeded to become one of the most influential figures in Eretz Israel. During his time as chief rabbi, the population of Jerusalem grew from 5000 to 30,000 Jews. Salant was behind the establishing of educational facilities which would include instruction of Arabic and Hebrew. He was one of the founders of Bikur Holim (Cholim) hospital and encouraged people to move into the "new" neighborhoods outside the old city walls. "
Thus before John Darby ever penned futurist doctrine, and long before it was popularized in the 20th century western church through C.I. Scofield's annotated Bible, the return of Jews to Israel had begun.
Regarding suggestion of non-Jews being present in Israel to any significant extent, even 40 years after Jews had begun their return, in 1867 Mark Twain described Israel as: “.....[a] desolate country whose soil is rich enough, but is given over wholly to weeds-a silent mournful expanse....A desolation is here that not even imagination can grace with the pomp of life and action....We never saw a human being on the whole route....There was hardly a tree or a shrub anywhere. Even the olive and the cactus, those fast friends of the worthless soil, had almost deserted the country.”
"...of all the lands there are for dismal scenery, I think Palestine must be the prince. The hills are barren, they are dull of color...the valleys are unsightly deserts fringed with feeble vegetation that has an expression about it of being sorrowful and despondent."
The following quotes and chart are from "Think Israel"
In 1835 Alphonse de Lamartine wrote: “Outside the city of Jerusalem, we saw no living object, heard no living sound. . .a complete eternal silence reigns in the town, in the highways, in the country.”
In 1844, William Thackeray writes about the road from Jaffa to Jerusalem: “Now the district is quite deserted, and you ride among what seem to be so many petrified waterfalls. We saw no animals moving among the stony brakes; scarcely even a dozen little birds in the whole course of the ride.”
In 1857, the British consul in Palestine, James Finn, reported: “The country is in a considerable degree empty of inhabitants and therefore its greatest need is that of a body of population.”
In 1866, W.M. Thomson writes: “How melancholy is this utter desolation. Not a house, not a trace of inhabitants, not even shepherds, to relieve the dull monotony … Much of the country through which we have been rambling for a week appears never to have been inhabited, or even cultivated; and there are other parts, you say, still more barren.”
In 1874, Reverend Samuel Manning wrote: “But where were the inhabitants? This fertile plain, which might support an immense population, is almost a solitude…. Day by day we were to learn afresh the lesson now forced upon us, that the denunciations of ancient prophecy have been fulfilled to the very letter — “the land is left void and desolate and without inhabitants.” (Jeremiah, ch.44 v.22)
In 1892, B. W. Johnson writes: “In the portion of the plain between Mount Carmel and Jaffa one sees but rarely a village or other sights of human life… A ride of half an hour more brought us to the ruins of the ancient city of Cæsarea, once a city of two hundred thousand inhabitants, and the Roman capital of Palestine, but now entirely deserted… I laid upon my couch at night, to listen to the moaning of the waves and to think of the desolation around us.”
In 1913, a British report, by the Palestinian Royal Commission, quotes an account of the conditions on the coastal plain along the Mediterranean Sea: “The road leading from Gaza to the north was only a summer track, suitable for transport by camels or carts. No orange groves, orchards or vineyards were to be seen until one reached the [Jewish] Yabna village. Houses were mud. Schools did not exist. The western part toward the sea was almost a desert. The villages in this area were few and thinly populated. Many villages were deserted by their inhabitants.”
"Before the beginning of the 20th century, there were practically no Muslim Arabs in the Holy Land. In 1695 there was not a single Muslim Arab in Gaza, Nazareth, and Um-El-Phachem. All Arabs there were Christians. By contrast, the Jews, despite 2000 years of persecution and forced conversions by various conquerors, have throughout most of history been the majority population in the Holy Land. In Jerusalem Jews were always the largest demographic group , except for periods when conquerors specifically threw them out and prevented them from returning."
Any semi-objective person that browses the pages of The History of the Jews web site, and tries to imagine themselves in the shoes of Jews that have been discriminated against by special laws, have persecuted and killed decade after decade century after century, indeed millennia after millennia, has little choice but to be sympathetic to the cause of their having a country where they can make their own laws through the democratic process and determine their own destiny. Sadly, even persecuted in no small measure by what non-Christians are mistakenly led to believe is part of the church, who conducted themselves in a manner the exact opposite of that commanded of Christians by the Gospel. The continuing rise in anti-Semitism and persecution of Jews in Europe, "as Islam replaces Christianity as the dominant religion in Europe", today demonstrates that the Islamic gentile portion of mankind is still not about to stop.
Sahih Bukhari B52 #177 Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah's Apostle said, "the Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say. "O Muslim! there is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him."
Bukhari, V1 B2 #24 Narrated Ibn 'Umar: Allah's Apostle said: "I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight against the people until they testify that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and that Muhammad is Allah's Apostle.....
Qur'an 33:26 "Allah took down the People of the Scripture Book. He cast terror into their hearts. Some you slew, and some you made prisoners. And He made you heirs of their lands, their houses, and their goods, giving you a land which you had not traversed before. And Allah has power over all things."
A couple more notes from Jewish History.org follow, regarding the restoration of the Jews to their land:
1818 John Adams (1735-1826): Statesman and President. In a letter to Mordecai Manuel Noah, he wrote: "I wish your nation may be admitted to all the privileges of citizens in every country of the world." Regarding the re-establishment of a Jewish state, he wrote in the same year: "I really wish the Jews again in Judea an independent nation."
1804 - 1881 Benjamin Disraeli (Earl of Beaconsfeld England): Despite his father's conversion to the Anglican faith and his own baptism at the age of thirteen, he never lost his pride in being part of the Jewish people.
In two of his novels, Alroy and Tancred, he described the Jewish desire for independence in their own land.
The Desolation Becomes Fruited (URL)
Image of Tel-Aviv during the 1909 lottery for building sites. (source)
IAF Flight over Tel-Aviv's beaches for Israel's 63rd Independence Day (source)
While Jews began to restore their Promised Land from utter desolation a couple hundred years ago, the "green movement" was kicked off more formally in 1910, with the founding of the first kibbutz on the shore of the Sea of Galilee.
From Christian Zionism by JoAnn G. Magnuson: "Walter Lowdermilk, representative of the U.S. Soil Conservation Service and author of scholarly works on global natural resources, traveled in the Middle East in 1938-39. He described the land in biblical times as having rich red earth, terraces, and forested hillsides. These, he said, were stripped of their topsoil as desert Arabs cut down the trees, leaving the country "a desert land with no one to till the soil..." He concluded that, "The decay of Palestine reached its darkest stage in the four hundred years of Turkish rule, from 1517 to 1918" (Lowdermilk, Palestine: Land of Promise, pp. 5, 74-76)."
About 600 years prior to the Christian era, Ezekiel prophesied regarding a desolation, and subsequent restoration.
Ezekiel 36:35 And they shall say, This land that was desolate is become like the garden of Eden;
and the waste and desolate and ruined cities [are become] fenced,
(map of Israeli security fence)
[and] are inhabited.
Jerusalem growing from a population of just 550 to over 3/4 of a million people, with the population of Israel growing from 10,000 to over 7.8 million. That tiny strip of land emerging from total desolation as the Israelis advanced as world leaders in agricultural innovation and technology. The Gush Katif greenhouses alone produced about two hundred million dollars worth of exports per year.
"...the community of Atzmona had Israel’s largest plant nursery, and with 800 cows, the Katif dairy was the second largest in the country."
If you are hoping for a fairytale ending you're in for a disappointment. These industries were located on the Gaza strip, that the Israelis developed, over the last half of the 20th century. Secular international powers then brokered a deal in which the Gaza strip was to be handed over to the so-called "Palestinians", in exchange for yet another empty promise from Muhammad's followers that are committed to destroying the "People of the Book" just as Muhammad mass murdered Jews, while also enslaving some, and confiscating the fruit of their labor of generations, back then as well.
The Gaza Strip's new owners, were to take over the operation and profit of the greenhouses but instead, predictably, plundered, destroyed and abandoned them. Rather than producing food and flowers for export, the "Palestinians" instead used the Gaza strip as a platform - now closer to Jerusalem - from which to launch thousands of rockets randomly into Jerusalem, as capable of hitting schools and hospitals as anything else.
The greenhouses are abandoned today, and 4,000 high tech greenhouse jobs the Jews shared with Palestinians churning out $200,000,000 worth of produce a year, were turned into 500 farm jobs.
"Finally, a Palestinian 'Charity' Tells The Truth" By Debbie Schlussel
"A Gaza charity headed by the interior minister of Hamas yesterday offered $1.4 million to any Arab citizen of Israel who abducts an Israeli soldier."
I wonder how many "Christians" funded that "charity" believing they were helping "Palestinians"? Is it really a stretch to believe that funds sent to aid Palestinians are fungible, funding both welfare and bombs? Who keeps track of such funds, the interior minister of Hamas?
If you want to help the downtrodden why don't you help folks who deserve it like those suffering in Africa, through organizations like Mercy Ships, Voice of the Martyrs, and Compassion International?
And the Gaza town of Neve Dekalim today?
"Hamas turned the site into a barbed-wire enclosed terror training camp from which Qassam rockets were launched into Israel. Signs posted in Arabic state that it is a 'closed military zone.' Mahmoud al-Zahar, chief of Hamas said that Hamas planned to launch terror attacks that would drive Jews out of the West Bank and the entire state."
How many months, much less years, would you want your government to restrain itself, if bomb carrying rockets were dropping into your neighborhood?
".... terror only intensified when Israel completely and fully withdrew from the Gaza Strip, when it handed it in full to the Palestinians! They of course find it easy to forget that it wasn't until two years after the withdrawal, two years of continued rockets that a blockade was put up to prevent the smuggling of these rockets, of these weapons."
So rather than two hundred million dollars worth of produce, the export of "Palestinian" residents of Israel today is terrorism, as detailed in their own words through countless web sites, and videos on YouTube.
Start with a YouTube search like - Islam indoctrination of children
Besides being highly productive as an inherent part of the nature of Jews, another reason the Israelis have been able to become so innovative, productive and prosperous, as compared to their Islamic neighbors, is because they are the only democracy in the Middle East that champions the freedom and right to self-determination of its citizenry, that also shares our western values. That's also why - along with the rest of Israeli citizens - Muslims enjoy more freedom in Israel than they do in any Islam controlled country on earth.