What is the Israel-Palestine Conflict and How Should Christians React?

by Ashleigh Clark

One of the most nuanced and controversial land disputes in the modern day is fought over a small slice of land nestled between Egypt and Syria. 

The fight for the Holy Land rages between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. Both states claim the right to the land via centuries of religious and generational traditions. Dr. Duerr, a Professor of International Studies at Cedarville University, explained that the region has been “relatively peaceful since the mid-2000s [however] the last few weeks have had an uptick of violence.” 

The conflict began in 1948 with the creation of the Israeli state out of land from the British Mandate of Palestine. Its creation has caused numerous wars with Palestine and the surrounding nations. Israel is the stronger, wealthier of the two nations. To reinforce its strength, Israel constructed a border wall along the West Bank border, which is “illegal under international law…as outlined by the UN.” However, “the Israeli response is that 94% of the “wall” is actually a fence.” Duerr noted. He added a caveat to that statement, saying “the wall has considerably decreased terrorist attacks from the West Bank,” 

Meanwhile, Hamas, a terrorist group, has control over the Gaza Strip, intending to take over the Holy Land for Muslims exclusively. Religious and racial differences perpetuate hostilities between the two nations. The conflict has affected the surrounding nations, international relations, and American foreign policy. 

Although a multi-state solution sounds like the likely road to peace, the Palestinians have been unwilling to accept several proposals since the late 1900s. A two-state solution would provide a state for Israel and another for Palestine. Duerr noted two specific proposals, one made by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and another by President Donald Trump. They were considered beneficial to the Palestinians; yet, there was “widespread reluctance from the Palestinians,” he said. 

A three-state solution, one for Israel, another for West Bank, and then Gaza, seems to be another avenue since the West Bank and Gaza are not well connected. However, Dr. Duerr said this solution is considered controversial. He also mentioned letting Israel and Palestine figure it out themselves has been considered. 

One concerning issue that he addressed is the expansion of the Israeli population. Because of this population growth, Israel’s government moved to establish settlements in the West Bank, which, according to Duerr, has brought them under fire with international law. 

In the Christian community, many are divided on whether or not modern-day Israel has the divine right to annex the entire territory as it did during Bible times. According to Duerr, “biblical justification is contested”. Some believe that Israel has full claim to the land and

America has been henceforth blessed by aiding Israel, citing the Abrahamic covenant in Genesis as the basis for their argument. 

However, others do not view the Lord’s blessing on Abraham as sufficient for Israel to claim the whole region in the modern day. The continued human rights violations are a constant reminder that, while solutions vary, something needs to be done. 

In the end, all of this serves to remind us that violence will never end until the coming of our Lord. In his absence, we must be ambassadors to the nations and promote Christ-like peace on earth. Further, we can find hope that one day, all the lands will be restored under the eternal sovereignty of Christ. Dr. Duerr ended by encouraging Christians to pray for Christians in both Palestine and Israel. Additionally, saving faith in the Lord has yet to fully penetrate the region. “Israelis need Christ too,” he said. “[And] pray for the peace of Jerusalem.” 


AP PHOTOS: Israel’s separation barrier, 20 years on. (2022, June 27). AP NEWS. https://apnews.com/article/politics-middle-east-jerusalem-israel-west-bank-2ce5d9956b7 29ad6169c880d00068977 

How Should Christians View the Israeli-Palestinian Situation? (n.d.). The Christian Broadcasting Network. 

https://www.cbn.com/onlinediscipleship/how-should-christians-view-the-israeli-palestini an-situation?/&mobile=false 

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. (n.d.). Global Conflict Tracker. https://www.cfr.org/global-conflict-tracker/conflict/israeli-palestinian-conflict What does the Bible say about Palestine and Israel? (n.d.). Mennonite Central Committee U.S. https://mcc.org/learn/where/middle-east/palestine-israel/faq/bible

8 Replies to "What is the Israel-Palestine Conflict and How Should Christians React?"

  • comment-avatar
    AAC October 11, 2023 (10:01 am)

    This is probably the most difficult policy issue in the 20th century. Unfortunatey, both Western Christianity and Judiaism both, in their own way, have created in their minds a version of “Manifest Destiny”. That the United States would take upon itself, the au;thority to “assign” land in other places on behalf of a people who were nearly destroyed, not in the United States but in Europe. But then, America thinks it is Joshua having settled America itself based on destroying Native Americans and cultivating slavery.

    The problem has always been American Foreign Policy and their complicity in creating a “homeland” for a people to
    address the holocaust which took place, NOT HERE but “over there”. What homeland did the US provide for freed slaves? And even when the freed slaves developed their own lands with great success, what did AMERICA do? The burned it up!

    So the next time you hear a Jeremiah Wright, stop and think about what you mean by Christians. How should Christians react? What do YOU mean by Christians?

  • comment-avatar
    David jones October 14, 2023 (11:24 am)

    You are correct that all true believers should pray for peace betweem the two countries. The introduction of Hamas to Palestine I believe is the biggest problem. They are not doubt a radical evil group. Their whole purpose is the destruction of Israel. They are not looking for peace, but the annilation of the Jews in Israel. If the Palistine people would try to drive out the evil in their country I am sure that Israel would gladly help. This would hopefully bring about negotiations between the 2 countrie and more peacful times.

  • comment-avatar
    Betty October 15, 2023 (1:35 pm)

    The only real weapon we have is prayer, if we are true believers Amen

  • comment-avatar
    Muzi Ndlovu October 24, 2023 (2:20 pm)

    Honestly speaking, I don’t believe that any law,parliment, or terrorist organisation can trump the Authority of Jesus Christ, and until both of these lands can truly surrender their hearts to Jesus, there never will truly be peace in Israel.

  • comment-avatar
    Rochelle Mitchell November 11, 2023 (1:07 am)

    There is a Palestinian march in Cape Town today. As a Christian I am not sure if I should join or not.

  • comment-avatar
    Joel del Rosario December 7, 2023 (6:42 pm)

    Why can’t the Arab Nations with vast lands adjacent to Israel provide land for our Brothers and Sisters Palestinians?
    Israel is but a micro in size compared to the Arab Nations.
    There will never be peace in the Holy Land where one nation is perceived as an enemy. Peace initiatives will always be threatened by any part becoming an aggressor, manifestation of greed.
    Temporal peace may be but ultimate true peace comes when Yeshua comes and reign for a thousand years.
    Urgency is the submission to the Law of Love and Justice by all nations.

  • comment-avatar
    Free Palestine December 23, 2023 (3:28 am)

    I stand with Palestine, I do believe that Jewish people have all the right to live just like the Palestinians do. But they have been doing the same thing Germany did to the Jewish community. They are killing off the people of Palestine and they will keep doing so until they get tired of it or they have no one left to kill. You can’t just look away, I understand the importance of Israel but I also understand the importance of life and when life is endangered and someone is being knocked down time and time again someone needs to help them stand against the thing that is holding them down.

  • comment-avatar
    David May 11, 2024 (8:47 am)

    I believe the vast majority of people who “Stand with Palestine” are not fully up to speed with who they are standing with.

    No awareness of “mob mentality” and being swept up in other people’s ideals, please use discernment to see the ultimate truth.

    Palestine has an inner occupation of Islamic fundamentalists (Hamas) who struck out at Israel and are set on eradicating Jewish people.

    Israel have retaliated out of Defense, with what appears to be “A good Defense is a great offense” tactic.

    Not all of Palestinians/Israelis support there own agendas, but no matter what side, war is not acceptable. Supporting Palestine is supporting anti-semitism and supporting Israel is considered supporting genocide, so there are no “winners” on either side of a conflict.

    I think trusting in Jesus, through prayer and petition is the only way the world will ever have true peace. Jesus made that sacrifice for us, our trust should be in Him and Him only.

    Remembering that Jesus has won the battle (over death and slavery to sin), so that we could be freed from the wages of our sins.

    Jesus is the narrow path, God loves us so much, that’s why He sent Jesus as the perfect sacrifice!

    Lucifer/Satan came to steal and destroy, born in to this world of sin makes us his kin.

    Jesus came to set us free from sin and have victory in Him!

    I pray that all who read this come to rely on the Holy Spirit for revelation, discernment, peace beyond understanding and fully understanding who Jesus is, why God loves you and how you can have a relationship (as was originally intended) with the loving, merciful and grace giving God and our Heavenly Father!

    You don’t need to be afraid when you trust in Jesus! Your faith in Him will not return void!

    Jesus saved me from the occult and new age practices. Jesus is alive and the Holy Spirit is fully active!