Despite the Biblical legacy which links them to Jewish history, last week, UNESCO declared that the Cave of the Patriarchs and the Tomb of Rachel are Muslim holy sites. These same Biblical sites, along with the Temple Mount and the Tomb of Joseph, have witnessed violent acts of terror in recent weeks. Murderous stabbings in Hebron, the city of the Cave of the Patriarchs, has become an almost daily occurrence.
Jews and Christians familiar with the Hebrew Bible are aware that the purchase of the Temple Mount by King David, the Cave of the Patriarchs by Abraham and the Tomb of Joseph by Jacob are clearly documented in the Bible.
The Temple Mount’s purchase is recorded in 1 Chronicles:
And David said to Ornan, “Give me the place of the threshing-floor, so that I may build thereon an altar to the Lord; give it to me for the full price, so that the plague be stayed from the people.” And Ornan said to David, “Take for yourself, and may my lord the king do what seems good in his eyes. See, I have given the cattle for burnt offerings, and the threshing tools for [fire] wood, and the wheat for a meal offering; I have given everything.” And King David said to Ornan, “No, for I will buy [it] for the full price, for I will not take what is yours for the Lord, and offer up burnt offerings for nothing.” And David gave to Ornan for the place shekels of gold weighing six hundred. (I Chronicles 21:22-25)
The purchase of the Cave of the Patriarchs is recorded in Chapter 23 of Genesis:
And Abraham listened to Ephron, and Abraham weighed out to Ephron the silver that he had named in the hearing of the sons of Heth, four hundred shekels of silver, accepted by the merchant. And so the field of Ephron which was in Machpelah, facing Mamre, was established (as Abraham’s possession). [This included] the field and the cave that was in it, and all the trees that were in the field, which were within its entire border around. (Genesis 23:16-17)
The purchase of the land on which the Tomb of Joseph was built is recorded in Chapter 24 of the Book of Joshua:
The bones of Joseph, which the Children of Israel brought up out of Egypt, were buried in Shechem in a parcel of land Jacob bought from the sons of Hamor, father of Shechem, for a hundred pieces of silver, and it became a heritage for the children of Joseph. (Joshua 24:32)
Although no money was exchanged, the Bible also records the burial of Rachel by Jacob:
So Rachel died, and she was buried on the road to Ephrath, which is Bethlehem. And Jacob erected a monument on her grave; that is the tombstone of Rachel until this day. (Genesis 35:19-20)
Breaking Israel News asked two prominent rabbis to comment on why these holy places are being attacked, despite the fact that the Bible confirms they clearly belong to the Jewish people.
Rabbi Nachman Kahana, author, Torah scholar and teacher from the Old City of Jerusalem, told Breaking Israel News that the underlying message of these attacks on sacred sites is intended for the Jewish people. “I’m quite certain that the riffraff attacking Israel’s three Biblically purchased places have no idea of our connection with them, and even if one or two has ever read the Bible, they negate its authenticity. Hence, the fact that the attacks are being done in these three areas has nothing to do with the Arabs attempting to serve a message.
“The real story is that Hashem (God) has provoked them to attack these places as a message to the Jewish people, that just as the Torah will not change even one letter, so too will these places and all of Eretz Yisrael (the Land of Israel) forever be in the possession of Am Yisrael (the Jewish people).”
End Times scholar and prolific author Rabbi Pinchas Winston affirms that, through these attacks, God is speaking to the Jewish people, asking them to come closer to their Biblical heritage. He told Breaking Israel News, “Our right to the Land is Biblical. Divine Providence is saying that if people choose to ignore that fact, then the Bible will ignore them. Current events should inspire a resurgence in belief in Tanach (the Jewish Bible), which will empower us to hold onto the Land and all that is holy to us.”