Hey! Hold on! I'd like to show you something. Can you scoot over to that bookshelf and bring us the big atlas? Thanks. Now pull up a chair and sit yourself down right here and make yourself comfortable.

Now open the atlas to the first map. It's a great big map of the whole wide world. Take my pencil, close your eyes and gently put the point of the pencil down on the map. Good. Now, I'm going to ask you two questions:

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1] Is the language spoken where you're pointing the same basic language that was spoken there 1,000 years ago? 2,000 years ago?
2] Is the culture, in the sense of religion, holidays, customs, day-to-day acts, morals and spiritual values the same then as today?

Let me help you find the answer. Say you're pointing at South America. Today, people there speak mostly Spanish or Portuguese. Now I don't think those languages existed 2,000 year ago, but even if they did I'm pretty sure no one in South America spoke those languages. Nor is the religion altogether the same, I mean: the pope couldn't have come from there 1,000 years ago.

How about North America? No English or French there if you go back one thousand or two thousand years. They sure didn't have Thanksgiving or Easter, either. Australia? New Zealand? Nope.

Maybe if you went back 1,000 years the language has the same name as today, but you probably wouldn't be able to communicate because the languages were very different.

Now look at the Middle East. Color in green all the countries where Arabic is the official or dominant language and Islam is the official or dominant religion. There's a whole bunch, right? Go back 1,500 or 2,000 years – anyone speak Arabic in North Africa? Was it the dominant language in Egypt or Syria? Nope. Did people 2,000 years ago fast on Ramadan? Nope. Where was Arabic spoken? Well – in Arabia, (today Saudi Arabia). That's why they call it Arabic and Arabs speak it, becomes it comes from Arabia.

Now sharpen your pencil real good, because I want you to point at this country here. It's so small that its name is written in the sea – where some of the neighbors want the people to go – and you can point that country out on a world map only if you have a sharp point at the end of the pencil.

Now ask: do they speak the same language today as two thousand years ago? Can I go back in time and talk to the people? Sure can! Of course it'll take me a few days to get used to their slang and to drop my slang – but it's not like learning a new language. Can I go to a house of study and join in the discussion? Sure can. Do we read and study the same texts? Sure do. When prayer time rolls around – can I join in? You bet I can! I know the prayers by heart! Do we extol the same heroes? Yup. Do we keep the same holidays? Sure thing.

If I told them: I’m from 1,800 years in the future and our people are again sovereign in our land, we speak the same language, worship the same God, keep the same commandments and holidays and we have the same beliefs – would they be surprised? No way! That's exactly what they expected would happen. They suffered conquest, persecution, denigration of their way of life and desecration of their holy places, numerous atrocities – all done to them by peoples who came from a far-away place (called Europe) who invaded their land. But they knew that eventually, in God's good time, all would be restored.

The name of the country? Why – Israel, of course!

It's one of the miracles of the modern world – the rejuvenation of the Jewish people as a sovereign state in their ancient homeland, the righting of an ancient wrong, the resurrection of an ancient language, in short: the return of the land to the indigenous people, the nation of Israel. How can anyone be against? How do not all the nations rejoice in this most ancient anti-imperialist movement: the Jewish national movement?

 
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