To Whom Did God Give The Land of Canaan?
A long list of prophetic predictions concerning Israel began a little over 4,000 years ago, when God told Abraham in Genesis 17:8,
“And I will give unto thee (Abraham), and to THY SEED after thee...all the land of Canaan (Palestine), for an EVERLASTING possession, and I will be their God.”
God’s covenant was with Abraham and “thy seed;” but, which of “thy children”? Ishmael was the first-born in the family of Abraham. Upon the suggestion of Sarah (Genesis 16:1,2), Ishmael was born of an Egyptian slave woman, named Hagar. It was the custom that the first-born would be the heir to Abraham. After Ishmael was born, God told Abraham that Sarah was going to have a son and Abraham strongly objected and cried out in Genesis 17:18,
“...O that Ishmael might live before thee.”
Ishmael, the father of the Arab nations, was Abraham’s choice, but not God’s.
God’s choice is now revealed unto Abraham in Genesis 17:21,
“But my covenant will I establish WITH ISAAC, which Sarah shall bare unto thee at this set time in the next year.”
God’s word is clear and unmistakable that Ishmael has NO CLAIM to the promised land. For 13 years, or so, Ishmael was Abraham’s only son and there was no trouble UNTIL Isaac came along. Then the warfare began. We have the record in Genesis 21:9,10,
“And Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian (Ishmael), ...mocking (Isaac). (9) Wherefore she (Sarah) said unto Abraham, CAST OUT this bondswoman and her son: for the son (Ishmael)...shall NOT BE HEIR with my son, even with Isaac.”
The matter had come to a head, and Sarah demands Ishmael to be expelled from Abraham’s tent. In Genesis 21:11 we have Abraham’s reaction,
“And the thing (Sarah’s demand) was VERY grievous in Abraham’s sight because of his son.”
In Verse 12 God again instructs Abraham concerning who is to be heir of the land,
“...in all that Sarah hath said unto thee, harken unto her voice; FOR IN ISAAC SHALL THY SEED BE CALLED.”
As it was then, so it is now. God gave all the land of Palestine, some 255,000 square miles, only to the nation of Israel (the “seed of Isaac”). The Arabs ( the “seed of Ishmael) have no claim to the land whatsoever. As long as both are in the land, there will be no peace, only war.