Israel became a modern state on May 15, 1948. Israel is however an ancient people, land, culture and nation. According to the free Encyclopaedia, Wikipedia, the modern State of Israel is located on the South Eastern shore of the Mediterranean sea, Northern shore of the red sea, Lebanon to the north, Syria to the North East, Jordan to the East, Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza strip to the East and West respectively and Egypt to the South West. It is important to note that biblical and modern Israel share land border with Africa.
It is remarkable that all these neighbouring countries around Israel are listed, mentioned and discussed in the Holy Bible. Even Gaza is mentioned in the Bible. My point here is that if all the ancient cities, nations bordering Israel are mentioned in the Bible, and are identifiable states/entities today in post-colonial Middle East as they were in Bible days, Israel would have been the exception – the only one left out of that space in a modern map had the Jewish agency not accepted the partition plan of 1947.
The Africa connection
The other peoples discussed in the Bible are Africans. It has been mentioned in many literature including Bible commentaries that the Bible references to Cush, Mizraim, the land of Ham, Ethiopia, Egypt are all biblical mentions of the peoples, cultures and nations of Africa that existed in Biblical times. Besides Israel herself, Africans today take pride in the fact that there are so many references to the names of African peoples and civilisations in the holy book.
If African fathers and leaders like the Ethiopian Eunuch of note had experiential, cultural/social, spiritual exchanges with biblical Israel, it only makes sense that many Africans today are die hard supporters of the same Israel. Never mind the Arab propaganda of the 1970’s that led to the boycott of modern Israel by African states. Today, Israel has full diplomatic ties with 40 sub-Saharan African countries and has 10 embassies across the continent. As the current prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu says “Israel is returning to Africa and Africa to Israel”. A large percentage of African Christians today see Jerusalem as the eternal home of the Jewish people and as the rightful headquarters of the Christian faith.
Israel lost its land, language and heritage due to colonisation
in the first century. Even though Israeli and Jewish people maintained a presence in Judea for close to two millennial, her peoples, culture, spiritual heritage including synagogues found home in Europe, North Africa and other parts of the Middle East until the early part of the last century. Modern Israel has afforded Jews all over the world the return to their own land and the resurrection of the Hebrew language.
Africans view the restoration of Israel as a sign. A prophetic sign that colonialism is over and that neo colonialism is also coming to an end. Africans celebrate with Israel in the hope that the God of Israel who has fulfilled ancient biblical prophecies and returned the land of Israel to its rightful owners is also bringing an end to foreign domination in Africa. That this God will fulfil all the biblical prophecies written in the Holy Bible concerning Africa. If Israel could recover their land, surely many Africans hope for the recovery of the land lost in the times of foreign occupation. Israel’s restoration is a beacon of hope for Africans who have seen the desserts of Israel blossom like a rose and hope that one day like Israel, many more African cities will export unique African products to the world.
Africans have started to dream again and to believe that if Israel could rebuild their nation and economy in seventy years, Africans can definitely rally Africans in the diaspora to the rebuilding of cities and nations of Africa howbeit, on a Godly foundation.
Restoration of Language
It is needless to say that many Africans are excluded from certain levels of reality unless they are able to learn a foreign language, communicate with and do business in those languages. This should not be a problem but for the fact that many Africans do not have the choice of learning in their own language. It is not a matter of choice but of necessity for most Africans to learn English or French. God restored the Hebrew language and it is now a modern language. Africans who love the Israel narrative can also dream of days when scientific concepts for example may be learnt in their mother tongue and other people can also admire and learn in these local languages. It is a matter of restoration of identity and not of sentiment. If God restored for one he surely can restore for all.
Many Africans have observed with disdain the culture of decadence in Europe and America as well as the culture of violence in the Arab world and contrasted these with the culture of innovation, productivity and Start up in Israel. Considering that Africa shares a land border with Israel via Egypt, Africans nurse the hope that the culture of innovation, excellence and productivity seen in Israel will infiltrate and motivate the realisation of the African dream in the many villages, towns and cities of Africa.
Today, Israel provides inspiration for Africans who dream of restoration of their land and economy. Israel is already helping in many parts of Africa to provide the impetus for the realisation of the African dream.
International President: Africa Israel Chamber of Commerce
Board Member: DEISI International