Sovereignty
Sovereignty iStock

In the previous article in this series, Part I, we discussed the demographic dilemma, that there are almost as many Arabs as Jews in the Holy Land, and that if you count other population groups, Jews are not the majority in the Land of Israel. The “Jewish State” is only a “Jewish” state in the places where it chooses to apply its legal jurisdiction, the rest of the Land has been abandoned to the Arabs. This is counter to the Torah in many ways which will forthwith be enumerated and discussed:

“Beware lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the Land to which you are going, lest it be a snare in your midst.” (Exodus 34: 12). “And you shall drive out all the inhabitants of the Land from before you … For unto you have I Given the Land to possess it. And you shall inherit the Land by lot according to your families … But if you will not drive out the inhabitants of the Land from before you, then those who you let remain will be as thorns in your eyes and as pricks in your sides, and they will harass you in the Land wherein you dwell. And it shall come to pass that I will Do to you as I thought to do to them.” (Number 33: 52-56).

Making a covenant with the inhabitants of the Land, which in our times are Arabs, would mean making an agreement with them to let them remain in the Land, whether under their jurisdiction or ours. Such an agreement is a trap, for counter to its objective of living peacefully with the Arabs, it leads to perpetual hostility, and ultimately to our own expulsion from the Land.

They will remain as thorns in our eyes and as barbs in our sides, to constantly harass and attack us in our own country, because that is what God has Ordained for us. Our desire to live peacefully with the Arabs and to be accepted by the nations, is ultimately a rejection of God. Our covenant with them is a breach of our Covenant with God.

“Rather you shall smash their altars and break apart their monuments … For you shall not bow down to any other god, for the Lord, Whose Name is Jealous, is a Jealous God.” (Exodus 34: 13-14). “You shall not seal a covenant with them or their gods. They shall not dwell in your Land, lest they cause you to sin to Me, for you will serve their gods, as it will be a snare for you.” (Exodus 23: 32-33). The very act of sealing a covenant with the Arabs in Israel is a service to their beliefs and their religions. A service that is akin to serving other gods, as it negates God’s Authority in the Land of Israel and His Covenant with us.

Israel has sealed covenants with the Arabs in Israel, and it has ceded legal jurisdiction over its Territory to them. Israel has sealed covenants concerning the Land of Israel, committing itself to keep laws which negate its Covenant with God. Israel has even granted citizenship to about 2 million Arabs, giving them a say as to how the Jewish state should be governed and which laws it should keep. All these things are clearly antithetical to the Torah and God’s Commandments to Israel, placing Israel at odds with God.

Citizenship is not specifically discussed in the Torah, because the issue was rather clear: The children of Israel, the Israelites, were the natives and citizens of the Land. Anyone else was either a foreigner or a convert, whether a resident, slave, or worker. His path to citizenship was an uncertain and long one. The citizens were landowners, they had an ancestral tribal inheritance. They were counted in the army and were members of the congregation. This theme is repeated throughout the Torah, for example Numbers 15 and 26, although one passage is particularly informative, one concerning the Paschal lamb:

“This is the Law of the Passover: No foreigner may eat of it; but any slave of a man, his legal property, he shall be circumcised, then he may eat of it. A resident and a worker shall not eat of it. ... All the congregation of Israel shall keep it. And if a convert shall reside with you, he shall keep the Passover to the Lord; all his males shall be circumcised and then he shall approach to perform it, and he shall be as a citizen of the Land, but no uncircumcised male may eat of it. One Law shall apply to the citizen and to the convert who resides among you.” (Exodus 12: 43-45, 47-49).

The Hebrew word “Ezrach” (אזרח) is usually translated as “native” or “native born” but a better translation of this word would be “citizen.” A native-born Jew or Israelite is one who would be considered worthy of citizenship in a Jewish State or in Israel, and he must keep the Passover. A convert is considered like a citizen, until he is able to become a citizen, and he must keep the Passover as well. A slave of a citizen is his possession and is a legal extension of himself, like a child, so he may eat of it, but this is only an exception to the general rule that no foreigner may eat of it, therefore a foreign resident or worker may not partake of the Paschal lamb. According to this understanding, the Arabs in Israel can be classified as foreigners or foreign residents or even foreign workers, but not as citizens. A citizen, which is the next step up from a convert, would clearly have to keep the Passover, along with all the other Commandments of God.

If Israel were a Jewish State, it would not be able to grant its Arabs citizenship, as it does now. Citizenship in the Jewish nation, the Jewish congregation, is the next step up from conversion, which would require them to be a native and absorbed segment of the Jewish population, which they clearly are not. The fact that Israel has Arab “Israeli” citizens, who are clearly not Jewish by religion or birth, and who are not a part of Israel, shows us that we are not speaking of a Jewish State, and not even of Israel, but of a nation of its people, an estimation of its traits. The government of Israel is not a Jewish government, and its laws are not Jewish Laws, so what we are left with is the people and their Land. The Land is the Land of Israel, although the Arabs call it something else. The people are mostly Jewish in many parts of the Land, although in many other parts they are not. And yet, even those who are, by definition, Jewish, do not lead Jewish lives as prescribed by their religion, and those who do, do so as Jews in foreign lands, in their communal spheres and in their private lives, clearly not as a nation. Therefore, calling Israel a Jewish State is a fiction, a mere consolation. What we have fought for and built is not really Israel, but it is a good mold for what must very soon become Israel.

To become Israel, we must keep God’s Commandments as a nation, meaning His Torah must become our Constitution, our laws must be subservient to God’s Laws, our government must be subservient to God, and our people must keep its Covenant with God. To become Israel, obviously, our people and citizens must be a people of God, not a people removed from God that reject His Laws, or an Arab nation that seeks to destroy it, but a people as God Created us, out of the descendants of prophets and the Hebrew slaves in Egypt, when He Took us out into the desert through the parting of the sea, when our host nation gave birth to us so to speak: God Took this newborn nation of Israel unto Himself and Fed and Nurtured it. He Gave us Laws to keep and Raised us as His own children. We are the nation of God and we must repeat this and internalize it until we truly live by it. The State of Israel must become a nation of God!

-Yshai Amichai is a father of six and the author of the Hebrew book, “The Constitution of Israel” ("חוקת ישראל"), and the English book, “The Upright One,” both of which will be made available to the public soon. You may contact him by email: yshaia@gmail.com