Israel. She is the apple of God’s eye – I have known this since I could hold the Bible in my lap and turn its gold-lined pages, ever since I started sounding words out into sentences. Now, I have been told that the Bible is God’s love-letter to me. But as I read those pages, I see the love and patience of God Almighty, yearning for the pure love of His chosen people, His pride and joy, His beloved Israel. Yes, they spurned His wooing again and again. The love of God, it would seem, can handle that. Relentlessly He pursues them.
But just as relentlessly, the world chases Israel – chases her with swords, with fire, with threats and cries of blood. I researched her history this morning, and found a litany of war and destruction and slaughter. Has there ever been a people so patient? For three thousand years, they have remained true to their religion and culture despite exile, an obliterated temple, coercion, and a Holocaust. For three thousand years, they have waited for Messiah.
Where is the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob? He is still there, with Israel. How else can she survive the constant wars and attacks, the onslaught of malice across the ages? Has there ever been a people so hated?
Today I research, and in these weeks, in scraps of time and quiet hours, I will be piecing together a short video for a class project. The message is King David’s, and it is timeless: “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.”
I feel so inadequate. I come to three thousand years of history, to a present-day complex and tingling network of nerves and issues and death threats and passionate stances. It is not an old issue: The Iran Nuclear Deal is still sour in many mouths. This week, Prime Minister Stephen Harper was elected out of my country, and I wonder how Trudeau will deal with the apple of God’s eye.
There is so, so much involved. I research and find that the media that reaches us has been pressured into telling one specific “Israel story” that leaves out context, telling the truth but not all the truth. As a result, many are confused.
Where do I start, where do I end, where do I pick up the threads? I want to communicate truth. I want God’s people to care about the nation of Israel.
Where do I start?