Copyright 1994 - 2023 Bill's Bible Basics
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November 12, 2023
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November 12, 2023
Israel-Hamas War, Casualties Of War, Wars And Rumors Of Wars, Very Serious Situation Which Could Explode Across The Middle East, Primary Purpose Of This Series, Christians Bending Over Backwards To Support Israel, Duped By The Zionist Jews, Hamas Is Without Excuse, A Humanitarian Disaster In The Gaza Strip, A Disproportionate Response By Israel, Bibi Netanyahu Refuses To Negotiate A Ceasefire Until All Hostages Are Released, War Has Polarized People, Christians Shouldn't Take A Side In Any Violent Secular War, Christians Should Refrain From Violence And War, Strive To Live In Peace, Bible Verses Regarding War Violence And Living In Peace, Christians Aren't Of This World, Explanation Of The Fake Map Of Greater Israel, Dimensions And Borders Of The Land Promised To Abraham, River Of Egypt Is Not The Nile River, Besor Stream And Wadi el-Arish, Most Jewish Scholars Reject River Of Egypt Being The Nile River, Two Maps
In light of the ongoing conflict between the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin "Bibi" Netanyahu, and the designated terrorist organization known as Hamas, which has governed the Palestinian enclave of the Gaza Strip since it ousted the Palestinian Authority in 2007, I have decided to write the following series. Now being referred to as the Israel-Hamas War, this war began on October 7, 2023 when Hamas made an unprecedented and supposedly surprise attack against Israel, by breaching the border security fence, and infiltrating the areas directly outside of the Gaza Strip.
In addition to thousands of Hamas fighters infiltrating the southwestern region of Israel by land, others arrived from offshore in motorboats, and also attacked from the air by way of paragliders. Early news reports indicated that Hamas fired thousands of rockets into Israel, and killed about 1,400 Israeli soldiers and civilians. Hamas also took over two hundred hostages of various nationalities, some of whom have since been released. As of this current date, it is being reported that thousands of people have died on both sides, and many more thousands have likewise been injured.
Let me point out that I do not wish to get into the specific numbers of dead and injured, due to the simple fact that it is well known that during times of war, the warring parties often have a propensity for exaggerating their numbers, for the purpose of inspiring loyalty and patriotism, and also to garner world sympathy for their cause. I am reminded of what Jesus said in the Gospel of Mark regarding wars and rumors of wars, as we see by the following verse:
"And when ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars, be ye not troubled: for such things must needs be; but the end shall not be yet."
Mark 13:7, KJV
However, even without those specific numbers, it has already become clear to world leaders that the current conflict is a very serious situation, which could easily explode into an even greater war engulfing other Middle Eastern nations, if the current confrontation is not soon brought under control. In fact, being a staunch ally of Israel, the United States of America has not only already sent additional soldiers to the Middle East, but in recent days it has bombed targets in both Syria and Iraq, as a warning to Iran to not attempt to use the Israel-Hamas war as a mechanism to further its own agenda in the Middle East. Israel has also bombed targets in Syria, as well as Hezbollah targets in Lebanon.
Having briefly discussed the Israel-Hamas conflict, let me clarify that the primary purpose of this series is not to engage in a political discussion regarding the war, trying to determine who is at fault, how to resolve the problem, or anything similar. Rather, my purpose is to examine and to expose one of the disturbing by-products of this unexpected and eruption of violence in Israel.
I am referring to the fact that every since this war began weeks ago, I have watched as a number of my online Christian brethren have been bending over backwards to demonstrate to all their friends, their unwavering support for Israel. It is everywhere, and to be quite honest, and while it will no doubt offend some of my online friends, it really makes me sick. These foolish, gullible people don't even realize that they are playing right into Israel's hands, and being duped by the Zionist Jews. I don't doubt that Benjamin Netanyahu will take full advantage of their naiveté as a means to garner further support for his current actions in Gaza.
If you have been paying any attention to the news, then you will probably already know that the situation in the Gaza Strip has already become quite a humanitarian disaster with the rest of the world greatly concerned for the civilians there. Please understand that while I am demonstrating my concern for the people living in Gaza, I do NOT condone what Hamas did. Of course not. What they did was downright wicked and very much inexcusable. They acted like savages. Yet at the same time, we also need to recognize that Israel has a long history of responding in a disproportionate manner when it comes to dealing with the Palestinians.
In fact, as you may have already heard, in recent days, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel has voiced his opinion that Israeli engagement in Gaza will be a long war. Not only that, but Mr. Netanyahu has refused to negotiate a ceasefire until all hostages have been released, and Hamas is wiped out.
But as I was saying, ever since this conflict first erupted, some of my brethren in the Lord have been acting like Pavlov dogs with regards to their automatic show of support for the nation of Israel. In fact, recently, while I was scrolling through posts in my Facebook news feed, I read one comment where one of my Christian friends was actually rooting for Israel to go in and destroy Hamas. Sadly, she is not the only one who is doing this. Clearly, this war has polarized people in the United States, and in other nations around the world as well. While some people are supporting Israel's right to defend itself, many others -- tens of thousands in fact -- have demonstrated support for the Palestinians, and even for Hamas.
But regarding the woman I just mentioned and other Christians like her who are calling for violence against Hamas, I really have to ask. What kind of Christian behavior is that? Since when are we Christians supposed to take sides in violent, ungodly, secular wars? Where is that found in the Scriptures?
Quite to the contrary, not only does the New Testament teach us that we are not a part of this world -- and thus we should not engage in any of its activities any more than is really necessary -- but it also advises Christians to refrain from all manner of violence and war, and to strive to live our lives in peace with all men. Furthermore, it informs us that those people who resort to violence, will in the end succumb to violence themselves; as we see by the following group of verses:
"From whence come wars and fightings among you? come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? Ye lust, and have not: ye kill, and desire to have, and cannot obtain: ye fight and war, yet ye have not, because ye ask not. Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts."
James 4:1-3, KJV
"Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth . . . Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God . . . But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust."
Matthew 5:5, 9, 44-45, KJV
"If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men."
Romans 12:18, KJV
"Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, LIVE IN PEACE; and the God of love and peace shall be with you."
2 Corinthians 13:11, KJV
"And, behold, one of them which were with Jesus [meaning the Apostle Peter] stretched out his hand, and drew his sword, and struck a servant of the high priest's, and smote off his ear. Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword. Thinkest thou that I cannot now pray to my Father, and he shall presently give me more than twelve legions of angels?"
Matthew 26:51-53, KJV
"And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he stedfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem, And sent messengers before his face: and they went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, to make ready for him. And they did not receive him, because his face was as though he would go to Jerusalem. And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them. And they went to another village."
Luke 9:51-56, KJV
"When they which were about him saw what would follow, they said unto him, Lord, shall we smite with the sword? And one of them smote the servant of the high priest, and cut off his right ear. And Jesus answered and said, Suffer ye thus far. And he touched his ear, and healed him."
Luke 22:49-51, KJV
"Then Simon Peter having a sword drew it, and smote the high priest's servant, and cut off his right ear. The servant's name was Malchus. Then said Jesus unto Peter, Put up thy sword into the sheath: the cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?"
John 18:10-11, KJV
"(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)"
2 Corinthians 10:4, KJV
"And the nations were angry, and thy wrath is come, and the time of the dead, that they should be judged, and that thou shouldest give reward unto thy servants the prophets, and to the saints, and them that fear thy name, small and great; and shouldest destroy them which destroy the earth."
Revelation 11:18, KJV
"He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints."
Revelation 13:10, KJV
Likewise in the Old Testament, we find additional verses such as the following:
"Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God."
Psalm 20:7, KJV
"But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace."
Psalm 37:11, KJV
"My soul hath long dwelt with him that hateth peace. I am for peace: but when I speak, they are for war."
Psalm 120:6-7, KJV
"And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more."
Isaiah 2:4, KJV
"And he shall judge among many people, and rebuke strong nations afar off; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks: nation shall not lift up a sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more."
Micah 4:3, KJV
Concerning the fact that we Christians are supposed to remain apart from the affairs of the ungodly, secular world as much as we possibly can, as I said, this point too is made quite clear in the Bible, as we can confirm by the following group of example verses:
"No man that warreth ENTANGLETH HIMSELF WITH THE AFFAIRS OF THIS LIFE; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier."
2 Timothy 2:4, KJV
"No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon."
Matthew 6:24, KJV
"No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon."
Luke 16:13, KJV
"If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you."
John 15:19, KJV
"I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil."
John 17:14-15, KJV
"Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence."
John 18:36, KJV
"Wherefore COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM, and BE YE SEPARATE, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,"
2 Corinthians 6:17, KJV
"If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, NOT ON THINGS ON THE EARTH."
Colossians 3:1-2, KJV
"These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth. For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country. And truly, if they had been mindful of that country from whence they came out, they might have had opportunity to have returned. But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city."
Hebrews 11:13-16, KJV
"Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the FRIENDSHIP OF THE WORLD IS ENMITY WITH GOD? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."
James 4:4, KJV
"LOVE NOT THE WORLD, NEITHER THE THINGS THAT ARE IN THE WORLD. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world."
1 John 2:15-16, KJV
But returning to our main topic of discussion, what actually compelled me to write this current series isn't just that a lot of my online Christian friends began to step forward and reveal their support for Israel. I was already aware of that fact. What really convinced me to write it was when one of my long-time Christian friends shared with me a map which he had found on Facebook. This particular map is apparently being used by my misguided, pro-Israel, Zionist-leaning friends to justify Benjamin Netanyahu's current military actions against the people of the Gaza Strip. There are actually a variety of these maps to be found online. However, they are not all the same, due to reasons which I will explain in just a moment. The map below is an enhanced version I made of one of the better quality ones which I found online.
Before getting into a deeper explanation regarding how this map -- and other related maps -- came about, let me point out some of the main features of this map. The red area is obviously the country of Israel. The bluish-purple area is claimed to be all of the land which was supposedly promised to Abraham by God. The western border of the bluish-purple area consists of the southeastern and eastern shores of the Mediterranean Sea, and the Nile River which runs through the eastern half of the country of Egypt.
The northern and eastern borders of this same region is the Euphrates River. The Euphrates originates in southeastern Turkey, after which it cuts through eastern Syria, and then flows through the middle of Iraq, until it finally joins the Tigris River in southernmost Iraq to form the very important Shatt-al-Arab waterway, which empties into the Persian Gulf. As you can see, the southern border of the bluish-purple area draws a straight line from the Nile River, cuts through Saudi Arabia, until meeting the Persian Gulf just below Kuwait.
For the record, I am more than familiar with these types of so-called "Greater Israel" maps. In fact, a few of my older readers may recall that I first exposed the "Greater Israel" deception in my 1997 seven-part series called "The Fruits of Disobedience". It just seems that this lie never dies; and to see it being promoted once again as the Israel-Hamas War rages, really irks me. I won't mince my words. The above map is a devilish lie, an exaggeration, and a deception. It is in fact pure Zionist propaganda. There is not an ounce of truth in it, as I will now explain to you.
In order to get to the bottom of this deception, we need to first discover what the actual dimensions were of the land which God had promised to Abraham. We find the answer in the following verses which can be found in the Books of Genesis, Numbers and Joshua. Please don't worry if these verses at first seem confusing to you due to so many different names and locations being mentioned. As we continue in our study, I will break it down for you section by section:
"In the same day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates: The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites, And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims, And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites."
Genesis 15:18-21, KJV
"And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Command the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye come into the land of Canaan; (this is the land that shall fall unto you for an inheritance, even the land of Canaan with the coasts thereof:) Then your south quarter shall be from the wilderness of Zin along by the coast of Edom, and your south border shall be the outmost coast of the salt sea eastward: And your border shall turn from the south to the ascent of Akrabbim, and pass on to Zin: and the going forth thereof shall be from the south to Kadeshbarnea, and shall go on to Hazaraddar, and pass on to Azmon: And the border shall fetch a compass from Azmon unto the river of Egypt, and the goings out of it shall be at the sea. And as for the western border, ye shall even have the great sea for a border: this shall be your west border. And this shall be your north border: from the great sea ye shall point out for you mount Hor: From mount Hor ye shall point out your border unto the entrance of Hamath; and the goings forth of the border shall be to Zedad: And the border shall go on to Ziphron, and the goings out of it shall be at Hazarenan: this shall be your north border. And ye shall point out your east border from Hazarenan to Shepham: And the coast shall go down from Shepham to Riblah, on the east side of Ain; and the border shall descend, and shall reach unto the side of the sea of Chinnereth eastward: And the border shall go down to Jordan, and the goings out of it shall be at the salt sea: this shall be your land with the coasts thereof round about. And Moses commanded the children of Israel, saying, This is the land which ye shall inherit by lot, which the LORD commanded to give unto the nine tribes, and to the half tribe:"
Numbers 34:1-13, KJV
"Now after the death of Moses the servant of the LORD it came to pass, that the LORD spake unto Joshua the son of Nun, Moses' minister, saying, Moses my servant is dead; now therefore arise, go over this Jordan, thou, and all this people, unto the land which I do give to them, even to the children of Israel. Every place that the sole of your foot shall tread upon, that have I given unto you, as I said unto Moses. From the wilderness and this Lebanon even unto the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and unto the great sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your coast."
Joshua 1:1-4, KJV
According to the previous verses, the southern border of the land which God had promised to Abram, and later to Moses and Joshua as well, was to be "the river of Egypt". Sad to say, it is precisely at this point where some of my pro-Israel, Zionist-Christian friends make their first huge mistake. I don't know if they do it intentionally, or if it is due to ignorance resulting from their not properly conducting Bible research in order to learn the truth of the matter. Perhaps it is a combination of both, depending on the person. But the end result is that some of these people automatically assume that the phrase "the river of Egypt" is referring to the Nile River. My friends, this simply is not so, as I will now prove to you.
While the King James Version of the Holy Bible uses the phrase "river of Egypt", other Bible translations as well as other academic publications also use the phrases "Brook of Egypt" and "Wadi of Egypt. But exactly which body of water are these phrases referring to? I will candidly admit that there exists some debate regarding the actual identity of this river or stream. From conducting some online research, I have learned that there are two popular contenders. The first of these is the Wadi el-Arish -- or al-Arish -- which is located on the northern edge of the Sinai Peninsula. The second one is the Besor Stream -- or Nahal Besor -- which is located a little further north. The Wikipedia website notes the following concerning these two streams:
----- Begin Quote -----
Brook of Egypt is the name used in some English translations of the Bible (e.g., JPS 1917, NKJV, NLT) for the Hebrew, naḥal mizraim ("Wadi of Egypt" NRSV), a river (bed) forming the southernmost border of the Land of Israel. A number of scholars in the past identified it with Wadi el-Arish [fr], an epiphemeral river flowing into the Mediterranean sea near the Egyptian city of Arish, while other scholars, including Israeli archaeologist Nadav Na'aman and the Italian Mario Liverani believe that the Besor stream, just to the south of Gaza, is the "Brook of Egypt" referenced in the Bible. A related phrase is nahar mizraim ("river of Egypt"), used in Genesis 15:18.
The Israeli archaeologist Nadav Na'aman and the Italian Mario Liverani have suggested that Wadi Gaza or Nahal Besor, was the Brook of Egypt. Certainly, it was controlled by Egypt in the Late Bronze Age and inhabited by Philistines into the Iron Age.
According to Exodus 13:18–20, the locality from which the Israelites journeyed after departing Egypt was Sukkot. The name Sukkot means "palm huts" in Hebrew and was translated El-Arish in Arabic. It lies in the vicinity of El-Arish, the hometown of the Jewish commentator Saadia Gaon who identified Naḥal Mizraim with the wadi of El-Arish.
The Septuagint translates Naḥal Mizraim in Isaiah 27:12 as Rhinocorura.
Although in later Hebrew the term naḥal tended to be used for small rivers, in Biblical Hebrew, the word could be used for any wadi or river valley.
According to Sara Japhet,
"Nahal Mizraim" is Wadi el-Arish, which empties into the Mediterranean Sea about 30 miles south of Raphia, and "Shihor Mizraim" is the Nile.
----- End Quote -----
Of course, Zionist Jews are not happy with this explanation. So it should come as no surprise that they would resist it, and continue to insist that "river of Egypt" refers to the Nile River. Thus, the Wikipedia website also mentions this particular point:
----- Begin Quote -----
Possible interpretation as the Nile
One traditional Jewish understanding of the term Naḥal Mizraim is that it refers to the Nile. This view appears in the Palestinian Targum on Numbers 34:5, where נחלה מצרים in translated נילוס דמצריי ("the Nile of the Egyptians"; preserved in the Neophiti and Vatican manuscripts, as well as in Pseudo-Jonathan), as well as in a few medieval commentators, such as Rashi and David Kimhi on Joshua 13:3. However, most commentators, such as Targum Onkelos, Abraham Ibn Ezra, Bahya ben Asher, Samuel David Luzzatto, Naftali Zvi Yehuda Berlin and Moisè Tedeschi on Numbers 34:5, reject this interpretation.
----- End Quote -----
What I find particularly interesting about the above quote is the fact that even most Jewish scholars reject the idea that the Nile River is the "river of Egypt" referred to in the Scriptures. It is for the most part Zionist Jews and pro-Israel, Zionist Christians who promote this misguided, deceptive narrative. Below is a map -- courtesy of Wikipedia -- which shows where the Besor Stream -- or Nahal Besor -- is located in southern Israel:
Following is another map -- courtesy of The Interactive Bible website at www.bible.ca -- which clearly shows the modern southern border of Israel, as well as what some people view as the Biblical southern border of Israel at Wadi el-Arish. To help you get your bearings, please notice that Beersheba in this second map -- written as Beer Sheba in the previous map -- is barely visible in the top right corner of the map:
One interesting observation we can make from looking at both of these maps is that BOTH of these streams are located on either side of the present-day southern border of Israel. In other words, geographically-speaking, they are not that far apart. Furthermore, BOTH streams flow from east to west, and then empty into the Mediterranean Sea, exactly as the Holy Scriptures describe the "river of Egypt". This is why one of them -- take your pick -- was the historical southern border of Israel. These facts make a rather bold statement. That is that regardless of whether we choose to accept Nahal Besor, or Wadi el-Arish, as the true Biblical "river of Egypt", it is clear that neither one of them is the Nile River. In my view, this puts a huge hole in the Greater Israel doctrine.
Please go to part two for the continuation of this series.
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