Thursday, October 26, 2023

The Land of Canaan: Whose Land Is It?

With the conflict going on between the Israelites and the Palestinians, the question arises: Whose land is it? From the Book of Genesis to the Book of Joshua, it is called the Land of Canaan. But who is Canaan? Canaan is the grandson of Noah who was cursed because of the sin of his father Ham when he made fun of Noah's nakedness. Genesis 9:18 - 27 tells the story of how this happened. Canaan was cursed to be a slave of Shem and a slave of Japhet. 

The sons of Ham were Cush, Egypt, Libya and Canaan and their ancestors are said to bear their names. Canaan too had descendants and a land in which his descendants dwelled. The Land of Canaan. The Land God promised to give to Abraham and his descendants.

Did God give the Land of Canaan to Abraham and his descendants to wipe the Canaanites from the face of the Earth? I think not. When God was making a covenant with Abraham(then Abram) in Genesis 15, he told him that his descendants would be slaves in a foreign land. Abraham was a descendant of Shem and not of Canaan and according to the curse, Canaanites were supposed to be slaves of the descendants of Abraham. However, God decided that the descendants of Abraham suffer slavery and cruelty in a foreign land before coming to possess the land of Canaan. I believe God did this so that the descendants of Abraham could develop empathy regarding slavery before coming into the Land of Canaan. 

Gibeon was a Canaanite and later an Israelite city, which was located north of Jerusalem. According to Joshua 11:19, the pre-Israelite-conquest inhabitants, the Gibeonites, were Hivites; according to 2 Samuel 21:2, they were Amorites. - Wikipedia.

The Book of Joshua in chapter 9 tells the story of how the Gibeonites made a treaty with the People of Israel. I believe that such wisdom as would be required for the Gibeonites to make the treaty the way they did, could be possible with revelation from God. So as a result of this treaty, Gibeonites ended up being workers in the Houses of God. I believe it is better to be a servant in the House of God than to be a slave of Shem or of Japhet. Even David testifies in Psalm 84:10

Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. - Psalms 84:10

 As a result of the treaty between Gibeonites and the people of Israel, In 2 Samuel 21, we learn that God punished Israel with famine because of the guilt of Saul who is said to have killed some of them and wanted to kill them all. It is only when David reparations by handing over the seven descendants of Saul to the Gibeonites to be hung in Saul's home town, that God answered the prayers of the people of Israel.

It is my understanding from this that God does not have intentions to wipe out the people of Canaan from the face of the earth but would rather have them close to Himself in His House of Worship.

So whose land is it? It is the Land of Canaan and Israelites are just Stewards.


Sunday, October 08, 2023

A Three-State Solution for Gaza, Israel, and the West Bank: Keeping Jerusalem Whole


The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, stretching over seven decades, has seen multiple peace initiatives and solutions proposed, with the two-state solution being the most prominent. However, with evolving ground realities and challenges, it's time to reassess and propose a more viable solution. A three-state solution involving Israel, Gaza, and the West Bank with Israel retaining undivided control of Jerusalem offers a potential pathway to lasting peace.

The Case for a Three-State Solution

1. Historical Precedence: Historically, the West Bank was controlled by Jordan, and Gaza by Egypt before the 1967 Six-Day War. Returning to a configuration where Gaza and the West Bank are separate entities can capitalize on historical ties, enabling each region to develop in a way that's most consistent with its heritage and socio-political inclinations.

2. Different Governance and Politics: Over the years, political divergence has grown between the West Bank, led by the Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority, and Gaza, controlled by Hamas. By allowing each region its own state, this solution addresses the distinct governance styles and political aspirations of each territory.

3. Economic Development: Separate states can pursue economic strategies that suit their unique strengths and challenges. For instance, Gaza, with its Mediterranean coastline, could focus on maritime trade and tourism, while the West Bank might emphasize agriculture, trade, and technology.

4. Security Dynamics: A distinct separation between Gaza and the West Bank could lead to clearer security arrangements, with Israel working out different protocols with each entity based on their specific security situations and needs.

Jerusalem: An Undivided Capital

A significant hurdle in peace negotiations has always been the status of Jerusalem. Here’s why it's essential for Jerusalem to remain whole under Israeli control:

1. Religious Significance: Jerusalem, particularly the Old City, holds religious importance for Jews, Christians, and Muslims alike. Under Israeli control, there has been a demonstrated commitment to maintaining religious freedom for all.

2. Security Concerns: Dividing Jerusalem would introduce complex security challenges. Keeping it whole under a single administrative authority ensures better security coordination and responsiveness.

3. Administrative Efficiency: Dividing Jerusalem could lead to intricate administrative challenges, including infrastructure, transportation, and service provision. Keeping the city undivided ensures more efficient governance.

4. International Oversight: Israel could ensure international participation in overseeing religious sites to assuage concerns of bias. This would reinforce the idea of Jerusalem as a city for all religions.


A three-state solution, while divergent from previous proposals, offers a fresh perspective that might just be the key to unlocking lasting peace in the region. By recognizing the distinct identities and aspirations of Gaza and the West Bank, and acknowledging the complexities around Jerusalem, this solution has the potential to lay down a roadmap that leads to coexistence and prosperity. As with any peace initiative, the willingness of all parties to compromise and engage in genuine dialogue will be crucial. It's high time to explore new paradigms for a conflict that has lasted far too long.