Yesterday was Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem day). It’s the day the Jewish people celebrates its miraculous return to Jerusalem after a two thousand year exile.
How did it happen?
Israel was declared a Jewish state by the United Nations in 1948. The surrounding arab nations weren’t too happy about it though. They went to war against Israel and somehow the little population of Israel, many of whom had just been through the holocaust, gathered together an army, defended themselves and, somehow, won the war. After this war, however, Jerusalem was no longer in Israeli hands.
In 1967, Egypt decided it destroy Israel. All the surrounding Arab nations got in on the act. Israel staged a surprise attack and got in there first. They destroyed the entire Egyptian airforce in a day or two and after the six days, Israel had recaptured the holy city of Jerusalem as well as the Sinai desert. Had there not been a call by the Egyptians for a ceasefire, the Israelis may have even reached Cairo.
What happened after the war?
Israel returned the Sinai to Egypt in a hope for peace. Israel is always looking for peace but their neighbours have other intentions. The Arabs want Israel destroyed, but God doesn’t let this happen.
For two thousand years the Jewish people have been praying for an ingathering of the exiles as was promised by God to the prophets and the Jewish people. We have been praying for the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the building of the third Temple that will come with the Messianic era. What would you have done one thousand years ago living in Africa or Europe? Would you keep praying? Would you put your hope in the God of Israel? Or would you have given up hope and believed the Muslims and Christians that God had chosen a new people?
I don’t know what I would have done.
But today I know what I’m doing. I have returned with my family to the promised land and lie in hope for God’s last promise to his people to be fulfilled.