Parshat Noach, the Torah Portion we will read on Shabbat, October 25, 2014, relates to us that the generation of Noach was corrupt. The earth, we are told, had become filled with hamas (Breisheet 6:11).
That word, ‘hamas’, is difficult to translate. Some translate it as crime (The Living Torah, Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan, 1981). Some translate it as robbery (The ArtScroll Chumash, 1996). Some translate it as violence (Holy Scriptures, Jewish Publication Society, 1962). Some translate it as injustice (The ArtScroll Ramban, 2007).
Altogether, ‘hamas’ suggests a moral depravity that corrupted the entire world. It suggests a world-view that supported and perhaps even ennobled crime, robbery and violence. It suggests a world filled with duplicity, fraud, abuse, lies and degradation. It suggests a community where violence was everywhere and injustice was universal.
Because of that ‘hamas’, G-d destroyed the earth. He brought a Flood that devastated everything everywhere. If there’s a moral lesson here, it’s that injustice, violence, lies and fraud don’t bring peace; they bring destruction.
The ‘hamas’ of the Torah is, in other words, a perfect characterization of the modern Hamas which controls Gaza. This new Hamas is utterly corrupt (“Hamas corruption weighs heavily on Gaza”, The Daily Star [Lebanon], October 1, 2012). Its abuse of its own citizens is legendary (“Hamas is leading Palestine down the road of carnage”, The Telegraph, August 2009). It dedicates itself to racism, dehumanization, demonization, ethnic cleansing and the annihilation of a homogeneous group (Jews).
If such a characterization of Hamas shocks you, read their Charter. It’s all there.
According to Hamas and its partner-in-government, the Palestinian Authority (PA), the nations of the world support their goals (“U.N. General Assembly votes to recognize Palestinian state”, CBS News, November 30, 2012). These goals include not simply statehood, but also the take-over of Israel and the removal of all Jews from it (again, see their Charters). The ‘peace’ these Muslims seek —which the world supports—is the ‘peace’ that will descend upon the Middle East after the ‘Zionist entity’—Jewish Israel--has been removed from the world map.
If that statement shocks you, read the PLO Charter. Look at Article 22. It’s all there.
The Hamas-PA Unity government bases its case on a call for a ‘just peace’ for ‘Palestinians (“Full transcript of Abbas speech at UN General Assembly”, Haaretz, September 26, 2014). That ‘just peace’ requires the ‘liberation’ of ‘Palestine’ –that is, all of Israel.
This call for ‘liberation’ is also in Article 22 of the PLO Charter. That’s where these Muslims call the extermination of Israel their ‘just struggle’.
The world agrees with this.
For example, the Pope, leader of more than a billion Catholics, has brought his moral authority to the Muslim effort to destroy Israel. In a recent trip to the ‘Holy Land’ (not Israel), he called for Catholics and Muslims to join together for ‘justice and peace’ (“Pope Calls for Christian-Muslim Cooperation”, May 26, 2014).
That’s the same ‘justice and peace’ we have seen in the PLO and Hamas Charters. In these Charters, ‘justice and peace’ are code-words for, ‘how we will destroy Israel’.
With this single announcement, 1.2 billion Catholics and 1.6 billion Muslims officially teamed up. Their focus will be to bring ‘justice’ to a people who never existed. Their method will be to demonize and criminalize the Jewish State.
Think of the Pope’s action this way: a tiny minority of 6 million Jews, living in a sea of almost 350 million Arab Muslims, is considered the oppressor of the Arab nation. These Jews, who live exclusively in one Middle East place that takes up less than one per cent of land of the Middle East, are called the people who have ‘stolen’ Muslim land. They have no right to that land. They have no moral standing in that land.
How curious. Judaism, and the nation-state of the Jewish Judea, existed for perhaps 2,000 years before Islam was started. It existed for perhaps 1,400 years before Christianity. Jews lived, walked and built upon the land of Israel for 2,000 years before any Muslim set foot here. Jews lived, walked and built upon this land for perhaps 1,400 years before any Christians walked here.
Nevertheless, the leader of 1.2 billion Catholics has joined with 1.6 billion Muslims to support and promote the claim that Jews today have usurped Muslim land.
Truly, justice has been perverted. Just as truly, Hamas once again fills the world.
The G-d of Israel has a Story He wants you to see. That Story is the Redemption of the Jewish people.
‘Hamas’ will play a part in that Story. Can you picture how?
Stay tuned. The G-d of Israel will not disappoint you.