Jewish Return to Independence: Homesh First A Symbol For America April 23, 2007Posted by Daniel Downs in Exodus, freedom, God, holidays, Israel, news, politics, redemption.
Tomorrow, April 24, is Independence Day in Israel. According to Israel National News, Jews of Homesh and their supporters plan to return to their land on this day. Israel government has indicated its disapproval of their plans, but Homesh Jews plan to make their pilgrimage and peaceful protest anyway.
Homesh residents were kicked off their land in the West Bank during Sharon’s disengagement plan executed in 2005. Last month, Homesh residents pilgrimaged to their destroyed homes and now barren land. They sang, danced, feasted, circumcised their newborn boys, and glorified God in other ways. It was a time to heal as well as an it was an act of faith.
The Homesh First movement is a return to the ancient hope of Israel’s redemption—God’s promise of their return from exile to their land. In a way, Homesh is a return to the first principles of ancient Exodus.
Exodus is the beginning of Israel’s independence. It was the beginning of political and religious freedom. Many principles and rights of democracy were born in the Jewish Exodus. If one reads the book by that name, he or she will soon see that God was the first to return not the Jews. It was God who heard their cry. At that point, God remembered his covenant vows and returned to the covenant project. God returned to the Jews to fulfill His promise made to their ancestors: the promise of an inheritance of a land flowing with liberty and wealth. His goal was to make a pitifully small people giants of faith in a world of superstition and idol worship. God returned to his ultimate plan to redeem humanity by raising up a model of a people, a nation, in covenant with Himself. What liberals fearfully call theocracy.
At least in part, God’s project has been successful. The Jews became a nation in the promised land. The surrounding populations witnessed God enforcing covenantal grace, the justice, and the power. God and the Jews returning to Israel continue the mission of redemption. It was this return constituted as a model of national covenanted life with God that greatly influenced the Christian West. It was very influential in the rise and development of British constitutionalism, freedom, and rights. It was most prominent among Puritan America, and it filled their vision of a new Israel.
Exodus was the American ideal of national independence. Our ancestors saw their colonial mission as being sent into the wildness to create a type of new Israel along the lines of Christ’s city on hill. The light of a peculiar form of democracy formed on biblical Israel, Puritan constitutionalism, with some Roman legal principles, which were not entirely different from ancient Israeli ones. Some called our ancestors Hebraic Christians because of the passion for the Hebrew language and Jewish studies. What is not normally understood is why Hebrew studies were so important? They were attempting to develop a nation based soundly on the covenantal principles given to Moses and Israel. In other words, they were seeking to honor God’s plan for Israel, which is exemplifying God’s plan for nations, societies, civilization, and the collective human race. That is why the Declaration of Independence is a document establishing a covenant between our nation and God, between our nation and all other nations of the world, and between our nation and every citizen.
Israel’s Declaration of Independence connects its present and future to its ancient past. At the end of the document, like the American Declaration, a statement of trust in God as guarantor of present and future freedom is established. In my opinion, it is a weaker form than in America’s Declaration. Nonetheless, the beginning of the Israel’s Declaration, its national existence is tied to the strong covenant between God and nation—to the Torah, prophets, sages. Consider the first two paragraphs of the Declaration:
“The Land of Israel was the birthplace of the Jewish people. Here their spiritual, religious and political identity was shaped. Here they first attained to statehood, created cultural values of national and universal significance and gave to the world the eternal Book of Books.
“After being forcibly exiled from their land, the people remained faithful to it throughout their Dispersion and never ceased to pray and hope for their return to it and for the restoration in it of their political freedom.” (emphasis is mine)
In essence, Israel’s Declaration is a statement of the return prophesied by Jeremiah, Ezekiel, Daniel, and Zechariah. It is the long awaited redemption of Israel as mentioned in the Declaration’s appeal for Diaspora Jews to realize.
I have heard some Israelis talk about their hope for the redemption of Israel. They have called for the national repentance that past Rabbis taught would be required before it would be possible. One of the key indicators of the yet to be realized redemption is the continued lack of political leaders to make decisions to achieve it. In other words, liberal leaders keep being elected on false promises. They dance to the tune of western powers not to the need of the people. The have been brain-washed by the ideals of peace at all costs, or at least, accomplishing the UN unworkable objectives at any cost—even at the cost of many Israeli lives.
The Homesh movement of return encompasses the totality of the Jews national independence beginning with Exodus, renewed by the Declaration, and continued in the fervent hope of final redemption. This redemption, however, is one only God can fully accomplish. As a Christian, I believe it will occur when the Messiah comes. It is that obvious need voiced by insightful Israelis for a true Jewish leader to establish once and for all time a Jewish Israel.
As I wrote in previous posts, Homesh is important to America. Not only is the American government mover-and-shaker of the UN agenda in Middle East peace process—so called, but our national independence, our freedom, is connected in the same way Israelis are: To God. This political connection set us apart from all others in the 18th Century, and our partial departure in since the beginning of the 20th Century has set us apart as well—as the great Satan. America has a common bond with Israel extending to the past and into the present. We have a similar need to assure our future. Like the upcoming Homesh event, America must have its own return, which gives cause for hope. Several recent events indicate such a return maybe in progress such as the election of a President who genuinely honors God, the Supreme Court decision upholding the Partial Birth Abortion Ban, the positive results from virtue education programs. All signs of God’s blessing.
Let us hope and pray Homesh Jews also have or will soon have similar cause for hope in continued blessing of God return.
Note: For an interesting comparison of the Declarations of Independence read The Hebrew Translation of the Declaration of Independence by S. Ilan Troen