Lesson 5: Geography Study Concerning the Scriptures, Countries Surrounding Israel
Data concerning the modern nations that occupy or are near the Fertile Crescent
Area times Per square mile
Square Miles Israel’s Area and Population
Egypt 384,500 (48) 175 (67,287,000)
Iran 634,400 (79) 102 (64,708,000)
Iraq 171,599 (21) 133 (22,822,000)
Israel 7,992 725 (5,794,000)
Jordan 37,302 (5) 132 (4,923,000)
Lebanon 4,000 (.5) 892 (3,568,000)
Saudi Arabia 618,000 (77) 28 (17,304,000)
Syria 71,398 (9) 240 (17,135,000)
Turkey 296,185 (37) 220 (65,160,000)
USA 3,537,190 (442) 76 (268,826,000)
Florida 58,664 (7) 255 (14,959,000)
Santa Rosa Cty 1032 (.13) 116 (119,712)
The principle of God that “The just shall live by faith” is encouraged by the land that God prepared for His people.
It never needs to rain in Egypt or in Mesopotamia but Egypt and Mesopotamia are not the lands that God prepared for His people.
In fact God brought Abraham out of Mesopotamia and God did not bless him when he went to Egypt in unbelief.
God intended Abraham to dwell in a land prepared to enjoin or encourage faith.
Mesopotamia and Egypt are endowed with the rich heritage of a great river.
Their sustenance, the ability to irrigate their crops, water their flocks and herds was derived from the Euphrates and Tigress and the Nile.
As long as there was sufficient precipitation hundreds of miles away in the mountains of Ethiopia and Uganda or in the rugged highlands of eastern Turkey, from which the mighty Nile and the Euphrates respectively emerge, it never needs to rain in Egypt or much of Mesopotamia.
Survival in those parts depended upon nourishment from rivers that could be tapped and utilized in the greenhouse-like environment created along their banks by the warmth of the sun.
But in Canaan, by way of sharp contrast, survival depended precisely upon rainfall.
In the land of promise there were no great rivers, and what meager river resources did exist were incapable of meeting the people’s needs.
Certainly the Jordan river coursed through Canaan, but it lay at such a low altitude and was always so heavily laden with chemicals that its potential nourishment was lost to Canaanite and later to Israeli society.
So the promised land was so constructed by God to teach and demand trust if life was to prosper.
Faith was to produce blessing and disobedience resulted in condemnation.
These principles were most forcefully demonstrated in the matter of rainfall.
Lev. 26:3-20, If ye walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments, and do them; 4Then I will give you rain in due season, and the land shall yield her increase, and the trees of the field shall yield their fruit. 5And your threshing shall reach unto the vintage, and the vintage shall reach unto the sowing time: and ye shall eat your bread to the full, and dwell in your land safely. 6And I will give peace in the land, and ye shall lie down, and none shall make you afraid: and I will rid evil beasts out of the land, neither shall the sword go through your land. 7And ye shall chase your enemies, and they shall fall before you by the sword. 8And five of you shall chase an hundred, and an hundred of you shall put ten thousand to flight: and your enemies shall fall before you by the sword. 9For I will have respect unto you, and make you fruitful, and multiply you, and establish my covenant with you. 10And ye shall eat old store, and bring forth the old because of the new. 11And I will set my tabernacle among you: and my soul shall not abhor you. 12And I will walk among you, and will be your God, and ye shall be my people. 13I am the LORD your God, which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, that ye should not be their bondmen; and I have broken the bands of your yoke, and made you go upright. 14But if ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments; 15And if ye shall despise my statutes, or if your soul abhor my judgments, so that ye will not do all my commandments, but that ye break my covenant: 16I also will do this unto you; I will even appoint over you terror, consumption, and the burning ague, that shall consume the eyes, and cause sorrow of heart: and ye shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it. 17And I will set my face against you, and ye shall be slain before your enemies: they that hate you shall reign over you; and ye shall flee when none pursueth you. 18And if ye will not yet for all this hearken unto me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins. 19And I will break the pride of your power; and I will make your heaven as iron, and your earth as brass: 20And your strength shall be spent in vain: for your land shall not yield her increase, neither shall the trees of the land yield their fruits.
Later as the nation was about to embark on its mission of conquering the Promised land, Moses concluding exhortation to Israel included one of the most complete descriptions of the land’s physical properties.