Saturday, July 23, 2016

What does it mean that ADONAI "cares for the Land?"

In this week’s Torah portion (  we see that ADONAI “cares for the Land” (Deut. 11:12).  What does that mean, exactly?  Liam, explains:

Psalm 132:13 "For Adonai has chosen Tziyon, he has wanted it as his home." YHWH chose the Land to be the holy place He could dwell with His chosen people. The sages say that YHWH identified the Land to be Israel at the beginning of the creation. In Genesis 12:1, YHWH tells Avram to "go to the land I will show you." At that time, it was the land of Canaan. (Even today, Israel is known by other names including "Canaan", "Eretz Yisrael", "Zion", or even "Ha-aretz" which simply means "The Land".) And Genesis 17:8 "And I will give to you [Avram] and to your offspring after you the land of your sojournings, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession, and I will be their God".  

Of course, the indented geographical area of the Land today is but a small portion of the area YHWH declared. But note that the part that modern-day Hebrews (Jews) live in today, that we call "Israel", is blessed with everything YHWH said the land would have. Israel flourishes while the surrounding land (occupied by Arabs and Muslims) is a vast desert. YHWH Himself said this would happen to the land if His chosen people did not occupy it! Isaiah 51:3 implies this. It says "For Adonai will comfort Tziyon, will comfort all her ruined places, will make her desert like `Eden, her `Aravah like the garden of Adonai".  

Look at what happened when, in 1948, the land of Israel was returned to the Jews. Israel (the land) began to flourish while, still today, all the muslim lands surrounding Israel remain desert wasteland even though much of that land belongs to Israel. The message of Isaiah 51:3 is that if the Hebrews (Jews) do not occupy that land, it lies desolate.  

So we have visible evidence today of Deut 11:12 that YHWH does care for the land!

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