The Arab-Israeli conflict in the Middle East is constantly in the news, it’s a passionate, deeply rooted conflict, how did it start? It seems to be driven by differences in faiths, but I had heard about a reason that intrigued me, so I searched in Wikipedia.org.
Interestingly, the article in Wikipedia, after outlining reasons for the conflict, zeroes in on the root cause – both Israelis (Jews) and Arabs claim the area of Palestine, also the area of the state of Israel. Why do both claim the same land? Because they both believe they are the chosen people and that Palestine/Israel is the promised land. Where did these beliefs originate? The Bible.
Both Jews and Arabs trace their ancestry to Abraham. Abraham had two sons, the first born Ishmael by his Egyptian maidservant Hagar, and the second born Isaac by his wife Sarah. This is told in Genesis 16 – 21. Isaac’s line went on to form the Jewish people, while Ishmael was the ancestor of the Arabs.
I was astounded to think that the reason for this present day conflict is actually explained in the Bible. In a way, the Jews and Arabs prove the Bible true, not by agreement, but by their disagreement.
A skeptic may still think that the story of Abraham is not true, so the Arab-Israeli conflict is based on something that didn’t really happen. Can you scientifically prove the story of Abraham, Ishmael and Isaac? No, but considering the deep-rooted passions on both sides, I think it’s unlikely that it didn’t really happen. At the very least, it’s interesting to think about.
Next: Proving the Garden of Eden