Biblical Festivals/Holidays

Yom Ha’atzmaut

Yom Ha’atzmaut – Israel’s Independence Day

Israel’s Independence Day falls on the 5th of Iyar, usually early May. This day has been celebrated since 1948, the date of the founding of the modern state of Israel. In Israel, the whole country celebrates with parties, performances, and military parades. The latter reminds us that there are those who would dispute Israel’s right to exist. This is a good time to be reminded of Adonai’s promises concerning the land of Israel:

“He also said to him, ‘I am ADONAI, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land to take possession of it’” (Genesis [B’resheet] 15:7).

“In the fourth generation, your descendants will come back here, for the sin of the Amorites has not yet reached its full measure” (Genesis [B’resheet] 15:16).

“The whole land of Canaan, where you are now an alien, I will give as an everlasting possession to you and your descendants after you; and I will be their Adonai” (Genesis [B’resheet] 17:8).

“I will give you every place where you set your foot, as I promised Moses” (Joshua [Y’hoshua] 1:3).

“But you, O mountains of Israel, will produce branches and fruit for my people Israel, for they will soon come home” (Ezekiel [Yechezk’el] 36:8).

“For I will take you out of the nations; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back into your own land” (Ezekiel [Yechezk’el] 36:24).

“You will live in the land I gave your forefathers; you will be my people, and I will be your Adonai” (Ezekiel [Yechezk’el] 36:28).

“This is what the sovereign ADONAI says: On the day I cleanse you from all your sins, I will resettle your towns, and the ruins will be rebuilt” (Ezekiel [Yechezk’el] 36:33).

“You are to divide it equally among them. Because I swore with uplifted hand to give it to your forefathers, this land will become your inheritance” (Ezekiel [Yechezk’el] 47:14).

This promise of land is everlasting. Although the occupation of the Promised Land was interrupted by exile, due to Israel’s sin, the promise was never annulled. Specific boundaries were given, so no mistake would be made about the promise of land for Israel:

“On that day, ADONAI made a covenant with Abram and said, ‘To your descendants I give this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the Euphrates — the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites’” (Genesis [B’resheet] 15:18-21).

“ADONAI said to Moses (Moshe), ‘Command the Israelites and say to them, ‘When you enter Canaan, the land that will be allotted to you as an inheritance, will have these boundaries: Your southern side will include some of the Desert of Tzin along the border of Edom. On the east, your southern boundary will start from the end of the Salt Sea, cross south of Scorpion Pass, continue on to Tzin and go south of Kadesh Barnea. Then it will go to Hazar Addar and over to Atzmon, where it will turn, join the Wadi of Egypt and end at the Sea. Your western boundary will be the coast of the Great Sea. This will be your boundary on the west.

For your northern boundary, run a line from the Great Sea to Mount Hor and from Mount Hor to Lebo Hamath. Then the boundary will go to Zedad, continue to Tziphron and end at Hazar Enan. This will be your boundary on the north.

For your eastern boundary, run a line from Hatzar Enan to Shepham. The boundary will go down from Shepham to Rivlah on the east side of Ain and continue along the slopes east of the Sea of Kinneret. Then the boundary will go down along the Jordan (Yarden) and end at the Salt Sea. This will be your land, with its boundaries on every side” (Numbers [B’midbar] 34:1-12).

These borders include much more land than Israel occupies now, and more than even at the peak of its empire, during the reign of Solomon (Shlomo). From scriptural descriptions, the boundaries stretch from eastern Egypt to past Damascus, all the way into present-day Iraq. The promise of this land will only be fulfilled in the end times. Then we can look forward to the greatest Yom Ha’Atzmaut celebration, when the Messiah returns to reign in Jerusalem!

About The Author

Rabbi at Bet Shalom Messianic Congregation | + posts

Rabbi Amnon and Rebbetzin Lynette Shor are international conference speakers on prophetic subjects, the Middle East conflict, Biblical holidays, and Jewish cultural life. Rabbi Shor has appeared on many radio and television programs which include CBS, CBN, TBN, and Jewish Voice. He has also worked with Promise Keepers as the international liaison to Israel and the Middle East, and with the Road to Jerusalem Ministry as global spokesman.

Rabbi Amnon Shor, was born in Israel to an orthodox Jewish family. His grandfather Zachariah was a Rabbi in the local synagogue. Rabbi Shor learned the Old Testament and the Jewish Law from early childhood. After his service in the Israeli Army, where he fought the Egyptian Army in the 1973 Yom Kippur War, he set out to see the world working for EL-AL Israel’s Airlines , where he met his wife of 41 years Lynette. They have three children and seven grandchildren.

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