What does the Tanach/Old Testament actually say about the land of Israel?

After you find out – Start to Tremble!

Says Yehovah.* “But on this one will I look: On him who is poor and of a contrite spirit, And who trembles at My word.” – Isaiah 66:2

*God’s proper name is shown as it occurs in the Hebrew text in the selected verses.


God has a permanent love for the Jewish people

  • Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love” – Jeremiah 31:3
  • For thus says Yehovah of hosts: “. . . for he who touches you touches the apple (pupil) of His eye.” Zechariah 2:8
  • As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so Yehovah is round about his people from henceforth even for ever. – Psalm 125:2


Many times God promises to bless those who bless Israel

  • I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” – Genesis 12:3
  • Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee. – Psalm 122:6
  • ‘He [Jacob] bows down, he lies down as a lion; And as a lion, who shall rouse him?’ “Blessed is he who blesses you, And cursed is he who curses you.” – Numbers 24:9 (Balaam’s prophecy)


God has given the land of Israel to the Jewish people as an everlasting possession

Note: God set the borders of seventy other nations, but He didn’t promise to give them the land forever nor did He call their land “His land.”

(see Deuteronomy 32:8)

  • Also I give to you and your descendants after you the land in which you are a stranger, all the land of Canaan, as an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.” – Genesis 17:8


It is an unconditional covenant that God promises to never break

  • If his children forsake my law, and walk not in my judgments; If they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments; Then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes. Nevertheless my lovingkindness will I not utterly take from him, nor suffer my faithfulness to fail. My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of my lips. – Psalm 89:30-34
  • For Israel is not forsaken, nor Judah [West Bank], By his God, Yehovah of hosts, Though their land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel. – Jeremiah 51:5


God only allowed Israel’s dispersion because of His anger with them

  • Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in mine anger, and in my fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely. – Jeremiah 32:37


God calls all Israel, including the West Bank (Judea and Samaria), “His Land”!

  • And I brought you into a plentiful country, to eat the fruit thereof and the goodness thereof; but when ye entered, ye defiled my land, and made mine heritage an abomination. Jeremiah 2:7
  • I will also gather all nations, and will bring them down into the valley of Jehoshaphat, and will plead with them there for my people and for my heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations, and parted my land.Joel 3:2


God warned Israel not to sell His land or enter into a “land for peace” treaty!

  • The land shall not be sold for ever: for the land is mine; for ye are strangers and sojourners with me. – Leviticus 25:23
  • “And I will set your bounds from the Red Sea to the sea, Philistia, and from the desert to the River. For I will deliver the inhabitants of the land into your hand, and you shall drive them out before you. You shall make no covenant with them, nor with their gods.” – Exodus 23:31-32


God didn’t want the formation of any Palestinian State or Territories

  • They shall not dwell in your land, lest they make you sin against Me. For if you serve their gods, it will surely be a snare to you.” – Exodus 23:33


God is always carefully watching the land of Israel

  • A land which Yehovah thy God careth for: the eyes of Yehovah thy God are always upon it, from the beginning of the year even unto the end of the year. Deuteronomy 11:12


God has promised to re-gather the Jews to His land a second time

The first time was after the Babylonian exile ended in 537 B.C.E.

The second time was when the British Mandate ended on May 14, 1948.

  • It shall come to pass in that day That Yehovah shall set His hand again the second time To recover the remnant of His people who are left, From Assyria and Egypt, From Pathros and Cush, From Elam and Shinar, From Hamath and the islands of the sea. He will set up a banner for the nations, And will assemble the outcasts of Israel, And gather together the dispersed of Judah From the four corners of the earth. – Isaiah 11:11-12
  • For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land.” – Ezekiel 36:24
  • Behold, I will gather them out of all countries, whither I have driven them in mine anger, and in my fury, and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely. – Jeremiah 32:37


Isaiah prophesied that Israel would become a nation again in only one day!

On November 29, 1947, the UN voted to partition Palestine into a Jewish and Arab state. The Arabs refused this deal, but nevertheless Great Britain wanted out and declared that they would no longer be responsible for the region after this date.

On midnight May 14, 1948, as soon as the British Mandate ended, Israel claimed independence. President Truman signed an executive order recognizing Israel only 11 minutes after the State had been declared.

  • Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children. – Isaiah 66:8


Amos prophesied that this second gathering of Israel would be permanent

  • I will plant them in their land, and they will not be rooted out from their land which I have given them, says Yehovah.” – Amos 9:14-15


God promised that Israel would have the right to the West Bank (Judea and Samaria).

  • I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains [i.e., West Bank] of Israel.” – Ezekiel 37:22
  • You shall yet plant vines on the mountains of Samaria [West Bank] ; – Jeremiah 31:5


Jeremiah prophesied that many Jews would return from Russia

One million Russians have arrived in Israel since 1990, making them the country’s largest group of immigrants. Russian is the second most-spoken language in the nation.

  • Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth” – Jeremiah 31:8


Jerusalem is the eternal capital of Israel

  • In Jerusalem will I put my name for ever. – 2 Kings 21:7
  • But Judah shall abide forever, And Jerusalem from generation to generation. – Joel 3:20

The establishment of Jerusalem is linked to the return of the Messiah – that is why all nations resist calling it Israel’s capital!

  • When Yehovah shall build up Zion [Jerusalem], he shall appear in his glory. Psalm 102:16


God warned that at the time of the second restoration, the non-Jewish inhabitants and Arabs living in Israel, along with all of the Arab nations, would pretend that they wanted the land for their own state!

  • Therefore thus saith the Lord Yehovah; Surely in the fire of my jealousy have I spoken against the residue of the heathen, and against all Idumea, which have appointed my land into their possession with the joy of all their heart, with despiteful minds, to cast it out for a prey. Ezekiel 36:5


The Messiah will give two reasons for His return:

1. The dividing up of His land

2. The scattering His people

  • Then Yehovah will be zealous for His land, And pity His people.Joel 2:18
  • I will also gather all nations, And bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; And I will enter into judgment with them there On account of My people, My heritage Israel, Whom they have scattered among the nations; They have also divided up My land.” – Joel 3:2


The attempt by all the nations of the world to impose upon Israel a return to the 1967 borders will be the event that causes the Messiah to return to fight for Israel!

  • Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah [West Bank] and Jerusalem.” – Zechariah 12:2
  • And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.” – Zechariah 12:3
  • Behold, the day of Yehovah is coming, And your spoil will be divided in your midst. For I will gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem; The city shall be taken, The houses rifled, And the women ravished. Half of the city shall go into captivity, But the remnant of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then Yehovah will go forth And fight against those nations, As He fights in the day of battle. – Zechariah 14:1-3


Just look at the map of the 1967 borders of Israel and see how it exactly matches the picture that Zechariah laid out!

1. Half of Jerusalem was controlled by Jordan. This half will be seized again!

Note that the nations take the whole city but only put half in captivity! Why would anyone do this? It is because they are only trying to enforce the 1967 borders and not wanting to completely destroy Israel (see map).

2. The rest of Israel is not cut off from the other half of Jerusalem! There was a thin strip of land connecting Jerusalem to the rest of the nation in 1967 (see map).

3. They lay siege only against Jerusalem and Judah (West Bank) since these areas were occupied by Jordan in 1967.


These 1949 Boundaries held up until the 1967 “Six-Day War”. Note that Israel did not control Judea, Samaria and East Jerusalem. The term “Jew” originated from those living in Judea!