Who are the Palestinians Really? :: By Vanessa Panas

The Palestinian People

“He shall enter also into the glorious land, and many countries shall be overthrown: but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon” (Daniel 11:41).

Where are these ancient, biblical countries that God speaks of? Edom, Moab and Ammon are all in modern-day Jordan. Why would these cities be safe from the coming Muslim invasion? Jordan is a Muslim country that supports the PLO and an independent Palestinian state. They also have a vast amount of control over the Temple Mount. God warns us of a coming invasion into Jerusalem, but He also tells us specifically that these cities shall escape. Now we know why.

Before Islam was even created, God forewarned us of this occultic religion of Islam. How could John, banished to Patmos, see into the future to tell us that not only will Israel be surrounded by Muslims, but these Muslim countries shall escape the coming devastation? Why will they escape? Because they will participate in the coming invasion and help slaughter Jews where they find them.

Who are the Palestinian people? Are they these ancient people that have inhabited Israel for thousands of years? These poor, destitute and persecuted people that have had their land stolen from them? Let’s examine that for a moment.

We know historically that the land was indeed named Israel. God changed Jacob’s name to Israel, which literally means to “struggle with God.”

Israel has indeed struggled and continues to struggle today. So where did the name Palestine come from?

The holy Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 AD by Emperor Vespasian at the hands of his son, Titus. The political climate in Jerusalem in 70 AD was just as it was four decades earlier when Christ walked the earth. Look at the political climate in the United States today and it’s very easy to see how Jesus could be betrayed and handed over to His opposition.

Famous first-century historian, Josephus, who was present for the temple destruction, said that afterwards you could stand in the middle of Jerusalem and not know where you were. The Romans had cut down every tree for 10 miles around the city. It was utterly destroyed. Before the Roman destruction, the temple was undoubtedly one of the most beautiful buildings in the world. Historian Josephus also tells us, “He who has not seen the temple of Herod has never seen beauty.” The gold around the temple made you look away at certain times of day. It was magnificent.

Mark 13:1 says, “Then as He went out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him, Teacher, see what manner of stones and buildings are here!”

The disciple saw the splendor, the gold, and the beauty. But Jesus replied, “Do you see these great buildings? Not one stone shall be left upon another that shall not be thrown down” (Mark 13:2).

Almost four decades later, after His crucifixion and resurrection, the entire city was destroyed. The temple was destroyed—not a rock left standing. Roman soldiers pried the stones apart to get melted gold. They then took those they didn’t kill to turn them into slaves and used them to build their Coliseum, among other things – the future Coliseum where so many Christians lost their lives. There is a Roman coin depicting this very destruction. Rome suddenly turned it’s fury on all things Christian.

Why did people hate these new followers of Jesus? Decades after He was crucified, those who spread His message or just believed were killed in massive numbers. If this man Jesus had been crucified and simply was never heard of again, would the first followers have been so adamant about their newfound religion? Would a book written by mere men with no inspiration from God Himself have survived 2,000 years?

The first Christians were truly put to the test. They were not simply told they can’t say “Merry Christmas.” They were thrown to starving lions, burned alive, and torn limb from limb. All in the name of Christ, literally. They spread their message all over what is commonly known today as the Middle East. Many of the first churches were set up in modern-day Turkey, which the Ottoman Empire destroyed.

Peter and Paul survived and spread Christ’s message the longest. From historical records it appears both were killed under Emperor Nero. Paul had been arrested on previous occasions, and his Roman citizenship granted him the fairness of a hearing and ultimate release. A fire broke out in the city and immediately Christians were blamed. It is said that Rome burned as Nero played his fiddle, and that Christians were dipped in pitch and set ablaze to light his gardens. What hatred! What contempt!

Revelations 12:17 says, “And the dragon was enraged with the woman [Israel], and he went to make war with the rest of her offspring, who keep the commandments of God and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.” Christians ARE the offspring.

Thus, the new religion of Christians, who proclaimed without a hint of shame that Jesus was indeed God, was spreading and spreading fast. Rome was not happy. For a King or governor or emperor to hear that this man Jesus was the King of Kings angered many in power. To put it in perspective: Kings, queens, emperor’s etc., killed their own bloodline off to make sure nobody could make a claim to the throne. Then you have these Christians who are spreading in numbers; and they refuse to worship or bow down to the many Roman gods, and even the emperors of the time.

That act alone upset many Romans. Not only were they hated by the Romans but they were hated by the Jewish people, who still feel it is blasphemy to claim Jesus is God’s Son and the Messiah. The very first martyr for Jesus was Stephen, and his sin was “transgression of faith” from Judaism. The first Christians were thrown into coliseums for refusing to renounce Christ and acknowledge the numerous Roman gods. They refused to worship any man above the Lamb of God—The King of Kings.

Nero was emperor for a short time, but his hatred for Christians and his murder of two of Christ’s disciples, Peter and Paul, has made him unforgettable throughout time. Fast forward 49 years to 117 AD and that brings you to Emperor Hadrian and where Palestine comes from. Not only did Hadrian hate Christians, but he hated the Jew as well.

In 130 AD, Hadrian visited Jerusalem. Jerusalem was still in ruins from its destruction in 70 AD. Hadrian rebuilt the city and named it Aelia Capitolina. Though the temple had been destroyed and the city completely destroyed other than the Roman fortress, Jews did start coming back. And for those that started to go back to Israel, what did their journey bring them? What must they have seen when they arrived? No temple. It was gone.

Hadrian then erected a temple built to the god, Jupiter, on the exact spot where the Jewish holy temple stood less than 50 years before. There was a massive revolt which ended with over half a million Jews being killed and 1,000 Israeli towns destroyed.

The ancient Philistines were ancient Israel’s enemy. They warred for hundreds of years. In fact Goliath was a Philistine. They were people that lived just southwest of Israel near the Jordan River. They were warmongers and a murderous people. God spoke many times of the Philistines. Archaeologists can find no trace of the Philistine people. Perhaps this is why in Zechariah 2:5 God finally judges the Philistines, and they no longer are a relevant people in history.

So then, what better way to punish and utterly decimate an entire race of people, and not only the people but their history, heritage and ultimately their God? There were no longer Philistines at the time of Hadrian’s rule. Changing the name of Israel to Palestine was a way to disconnect the Jews from their holy land and rename their beloved Israel after their sworn enemies.

Over a half million Jews were slaughtered between 132-136 BC, which is known as the Bar Kokhba Revolt. Hadrian ordered public burnings of the Torah and prohibited any observance of Judaism. Is it any wonder the name Jacob, where Israel gets her name, means to struggle with God? Israel has always struggled. Israel’s offspring has always struggled and will continue to struggle until Christ’s return.

Satan has been attacking and trying to destroy Israel’s offspring (Christians) since Christ’s crucifixion. His crucifixion wasn’t a defeat; it was a victory and Satan knew it. So he has set out to destroy us for 2,000 years.

He worked through Herod to destroy Jesus and failed. Jesus was victorious on the cross, so His followers have taken the punishment for His victory. By destroying us, Satan thinks he destroys Him. For 2,000 years he has tried through many different world powers, including Nebuchadnezzar, to destroy the Jewish people. But, Christians are hated even more. Don’t we represent Christ’s victory on the cross?

There are three main religions in the world: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Judaism was created over 3,500 years ago and Christianity was founded over 2,000 years ago, with both religions continuing to grow and thrive since their foundation. Both religions can absolutely trace their history and origins to not only the land of Israel, but to Jerusalem. Although most Jews deny that Jesus is the Messiah and the Son of God, they do not, however, deny that Jesus was Jewish and that he was born of a Jewish mother and went to synagogue and studied Torah.

Almost 3,000 years after Judaism began and over 600 years after Christianity began, Islam was born. Islam was created by a man named Muhammad who claimed he had a vision from a holy spirit he thought was Gabriel. Muhammad, while in these trance-like states, would have seizures and foam at the mouth.

Through these visions he had, he created a new religion called Islam. In doing so, Gods promise to Abraham, Hagar and Ishmael was fulfilled. Ishmael’s offspring has indeed become as numerous as the stars. Muhammad spread his new religion by way of the sword, just the opposite of how Jesus spread His message. Islam, under Ottoman rule, conquered Jerusalem in 1517 and took it as its own.

What the Muslims and the world fail to realize or refuse to admit is that, in 1312 BC, Israel became a nation. They have a 3,300 year proven history in Jerusalem—two thousand years before Islam was ever created. King David created the city of Jerusalem, while Muhammad never once visited.

In 1541 the Muslims sealed off the Golden Gate in Jerusalem, because prophecy foretold that the Messiah would enter through that gate. And Suleiman, the Ottoman leader, wanted to prevent Jesus from entering and fulfilling prophecy. What they failed to realize is Jesus already entered that gate, and Ezekiel prophesied that the gate would in fact be sealed.

Ezekiel 44:1-3 “Then He brought me back to the outer gate of the sanctuary which faces toward the east, but it was shut. And the Lord said to me, ‘This gate shall be shut; it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter by it, because the Lord God of Israel has entered by it; therefore it shall be shut. As for the prince, because he is the prince, he may sit in it to eat bread before the Lord; he shall enter by way of the vestibule of the gateway, and go out the same way.’”

Around 610 AD, according to some Muslim sources, the newly created religion of Islam and its followers began praying toward the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. This is known as the first Qiblah. The Jews and even Christians living in Jerusalem in 610 greeted Islam with hostility (any wonder why?). Some say it was only after this that Muhammad changed the direction of Islamic prayer so that they now pray facing Mecca, their holiest site, with their backs to the Temple Mount. Other Muslim sources say Muhammad received a “revelation” to pray towards Mecca.

Jerusalem is a city, mind you, that Muhammad never actually visited. Jerusalem is not even mentioned by name in the Quran—not mentioned in the Quran even once; BUT Jerusalem is mentioned 806 times in the ancient writings of the Bible. Jews have thousands of years of history before Islam was even created, and Christians over 1,000 by the time Ottoman rule took over in Jerusalem through conquest.

Let’s fast forward to the rebirth of Israel. The Bible tells us it would be born in one day, and it was. The Jews started immigrating back to their ancient, rightful homeland. But what about these Palestinians we hear of today and for the last four decades. Jews always maintained a presence in Jerusalem; for 3,700 hundred years they have maintained a presence, especially in Judea and Samaria. And right after that comes Christians. So where do the Palestinians come in? The Palestinian people were originally Jordanians, Egyptians and Saudi’s.

King Abdullah in 1948 said “Palestine and Jordan are one.” And then King Hussein in 1981 said, “The truth is that Jordan is Palestine and Palestine is Jordan.” Earlier, in 1970, Prince Hassan had said the same thing but went a step further, saying, “There is only one land, with one history and one and the same fate.” This was the Prince speaking of Jordan.

Jordan also controls the Temple Mount. Why Israel agreed to that I will never know. They were called ONE people living in two states. In 1948 Jordan took control of the West bank (Judea and Samaria) where the holiest sites are and barred Jews from entering. They then tore down or completely destroyed 59 synagogues and desecrated Jewish graves. In 1950 Jordan annexed the West Bank.

Why didn’t we hear of the “Palestinians” before the last few decades? Why is there no “Palestinian culture” or “Palestinian cuisine?” A Palestinian language? Archeological evidence of their ancestors? The Jewish people find ancient evidence of their ancestors daily. Nothing to prove “Palestinian” existence has ever been found.

It wasn’t until 1967 that Arabs demanded an independent state of Palestine and we started to hear the first murmurings of the Palestinian people. This was after the Six-Day War in which they attacked Israel unprovoked. Only then did we suddenly hear of these Palestinian people. Yasser Arafat, the champion for the PLO and all things Palestinian, wasn’t even Palestinian. He was actually born in Egypt. Nobody really wanted or cared about Jerusalem until the Jews returned and made it bloom.

Isaiah 27:6 “He shall cause them that come from Jacob to take root, Israel shall blossom and bud and fill the face of the world with fruit.”

The Jews turned a barren wasteland into a thriving country. In 1867 Mark Twain visited the Holy Land and described it as “a desolate country…given over wholly to weeds – a silent mournful expanse.” Of the Jezreel Valley in Israel’s lower Galilee region, he said, “There is not a solitary village throughout its whole extent—not for 30 miles in either direction.”

Mark Twain also said that Jerusalem was desolate and devoid of inhabitants. So where were these Palestinian’s with the long ancient history in Jerusalem? They were not there because they did not exist. They were still living in mostly Jordan. Jordan annexed the west bank, created these refugees and blamed Israel. Suddenly they were Israel’s problem. Suddenly the world felt sorry for these people, and the holocaust of the Jews faded. These newly invented people were suddenly the victims by the oppressive bully Israel.

Israel has tried numerous times to have peace talks with the Palestinian leaders. They do NOT want peace. They do not want the Jews in Jerusalem or even Israel. Any peace deal they sign in the future, God says will be broken.

Jerusalem has a long history, and that history has always included Jews, not Palestinians. Jerusalem belongs to the Jewish people; better yet, it belongs to God and it is not to be divided. Christians need to remember that. Christians should never be for a two-state solution. By agreeing, you are saying God’s land should be divided.