The Jewish community in Hebron is in many ways the tip of the spear of the successful settlement enterprise in Judea and Samaria. There are more than a quarter of million people who live in small, medium, and large towns in Judea and Samaria. But the less than one thousand people in the small Jewish ghetto of the city of Hebron are the leaders who pave the way for the rest of the Land of Israel. Their strength inspires the rest of the State of Israel. What is it about the Jewish Community of Hebron that is so powerful?
Hebron – A Source of Strength
Hebron is one of the ancient cities in the Land of Israel. The Jewish presence in Hebron predates Islam and Christianity by around 2,500 and 2,000 years respectively. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob all lived there. More specifically, Abraham bought Hebron – for alot of money – in order to bury his wife, Sarah, in what is known as the “Tomb of Machpela” – the double tomb. After Abraham passed away, his children buried him there, and all of the forefathers and their wives are buried there.
But Hebron was also the Land of the Living. King David was the King of Hebron before he became the King over Jerusalem and the entire Land of Israel. The Judean Kingdom was always centered in many ways around Jerusalem and Hebron. There is absolutely no question that the Jewish people are the indigenous people of the entire Land of Israel – and especially the city of Hebron.
But the source of it’s strength goes back to the story of the spies who came to the Land of Israel. Ten of the twelve spies saw a curse in what was really a blessing. They came back to the Eastern side of the Jordan River and told the Jewish people that the Land was truly a blessed Land, but that they did not have the strength to overcome the strength of the nations that lived there. One spy, Joshua, had no fear as he never left the “Tent of Moses.” Therefore he had the wherewithal necessary to withstand the temptations of the other spies. But one unique spy, Caleb, needed to get strength to withstand them. Where did he go? Hebron. That is where he was able to prostrate himself at the Tomb of the Forefathers and gain the strength he needed. He returned and told the nation, “We have the strength! Let us go up and conquer the Land of Israel as God has commanded us to!” And so they did!
Today, the modern day heroes who live in the small Jewish area of Hebron are the ones who live every moment of their lives with enormous strength. They are physically and emotionally harassed by Arabs – and Jews – who oppose their presence in this indigenous Jewish city. But they have won at least 10 rounds, and now they have just received official permission to nearly double the size of the community. That is not exactly a knockout punch – but it definitely means that the Jewish community in Hebron will become at least twice as large and powerful than it is today. One day, the small Jewish ghetto area of Hebron will rise to be a large Jewish city with tens of thousands of people. There is no place in the Land of Israel that a Jew should not be allowed to live – especially in Hebron.