A small team of Jews and Christians fulfilled the Biblical prophecy of Amos on Tuesday morning. They “planted [olive trees] upon the soil” of Israel’s Biblical heartland, as read in Amos 9:15. The event was in honor of the Jewish holiday of Tu B’Shvat, the New Year of the trees. The holiday runs this year from nightfall on January 30 to nightfall on January 31.
The Israel365 planting was made possible through more than $10,000 in donations by Christians Zionists from around the world. Israel365 Founder and CEO Rabbi Tuly Weisz prayed for and blessed each of the donors at the event, which was live-streamed on the Israel365 Facebook page.
“I am so happy,” said donor Beth Madaras from New York. “Tears welled up in my eyes and I bowed my head down in prayer,” she said when she heard Weisz say her name.
Weisz said Christians donate to plant trees in areas over the Green Line because they understand that the Biblical heartland is part of the Biblical land that God promised the Jews in the Torah. It says in Genesis 12:7, “Hashem appeared to Avram and said, ‘I will assign this land to your offspring.’” This land is the Land of Israel.
Planting trees in Israel’s Biblical heartland strengthens the Jewish presence throughout the land of Israel. Jewish return to Israel is one of the requirements for ushering in the redemption.
“Israel365 strategically plants trees in Judea and Samaria,” said Weisz.
“The orchards we are planting in Bat Ayin in Judea are literally stopping the Palestinian land grab and fortifying the Jewish communities in Gush Etzion. The trees we planted at the Cave of the Patriarchs strengthen our roots in a place that Bible believers hold so dear.”
Amnon Sukerberg, a farmer in the community of Bat Ayin, told Breaking Israel News that the Arab villagers on the other side of the hills of Bat Ayin steal Jewish-owned land.
“We don’t want to build fences that restrict us. We are much happier to establish our territory by planting trees,” said Suckerberg.
Israel is amid its winter season, but the olive tree has special meaning at this time of year because it can live up to 2,000 years and does not shed its leaves in winter or summer. The olive tree is considered God’s eternal evergreen and for good reason. God Himself called the people of Israel His olive tree – “Hashem named you verdant olive tree, fair, with choice fruit” (Isaiah 11:16).
“I love Israel and Jerusalem with all my heart,” said Madaras. “I pray for the people every day.”