The only reason we even have to address this question is because, sadly, there are people out there who actually believe it.
This outrageously anachronistic canard was first foisted on the world back in the time of known mass murderer, terrorist and PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization) Head Yasser Arafat, who said, "Jesus was the first Palestinian shahid (martyr) who died for Palestine."
Arafat himself was born and raised in Egypt, but he didn't let that stop him from claiming to be a "Palestinian" for the first time in 1967. Arafat had sought counsel as to how to defeat the Israelis from the North Vietnamese, who were then waging a guerrilla war against the Americans. This was the Communists' advice:
“Stop talking about annihilating Israel and instead turn your terror war into a struggle for human rights. Then you will have the American people eating out of your hand.” -- General Vo Nguyen Giap, chief strategist for North Vietnamese Communist leader Ho Chi MinhAfter the Arab armies of Egypt, Jordan and Syria failed in their attempt to invade and conquer Israel in the Six Day War of 1967, Arafat was once again given advice about how best to prosecute his war against the Jewish state. And again the suggestion was to lie about their real intentions and motivations:
"Wipe out the argument that Israel is a small state whose existence is threatened by the Arab states, or the reduction of the Palestinian problem to a question of refugees; instead, present the Palestinian struggle as a struggle for liberation like the others. Wipe out the impression... that in the struggle between the Palestinians and the Zionists, the Zionist is the underdog. Now it is the Arab who is oppressed and victimized in his existence because he is not only facing the Zionists but also world imperialism.” -- Muhammad Yazid, former Algerian Minister of InformationIf ever there was anyone who epitomized humility and grace while suffering torture and unjust abuse, it was Jesus Christ. And that is why Arafat's mantra has been repeated over and over again since 1967, the year these terrorists became "an oppressed minority who were only fighting for their rights:"
The ploy was designed to cause the Christian world to more closely identify with the plight of the poor, oppressed "Palestinians." It was intended to win the hearts and minds of ill-informed and gullible Christians.
And it worked. To this day, many have chosen to ignore the lessons of Middle Eastern history and appear doomed to repeat them. And that is why we are forced to address this silly -- and easily disproven -- claim.
We have already shown in previous articles that "Palestine" was the name forced on Judea in Israel by the Occupying Roman Emperor Hadrian in 135AD, or about a century after Jesus. This fact alone makes it historically impossible for Jesus to ever have been called a Palestinian.
But we can also show in even older documents that Jesus was not a Palestinian Muslim Arab, as Arafat and Company sought to imply. Jesus was not a Palestinian or a Muslim, which is an even more ludicrous claim as the religion would not be invented for over half a millennia. And neither was Jesus an Arab. The historical documents which will prove this are the almost 2,000 year old New Testament manuscripts which clearly state that Jesus is a Jew.
The word "Palestine" is not found in the original texts of the Greek manuscripts of the Bible. No such place exists in the Bible, whether in the Old Testament or the New. The only English Bible versions which carry the name "Palestine" are the King James and Webster's Bible versions, which translated the Hebrew word "Pelesheth" as "Palestine" instead of "Philistia." (Note: this poses no problems for Biblical inerrantists as the claim of inerrancy does not extend to all Bible translations, but solely to the original Hebrew and Greek texts)
Worse yet for these historical revisionists, Jesus is clearly proclaimed in the New Testament text as, not just a Jew, but King of the Jews by His followers.
Evangelists Matthew (Matthew 1) and Luke (Luke 3) both provide genealogies for Jesus that show Him to have descended from Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
As early as at His birth, magi from the East came to Jerusalem seeking “... He who has been born King of the Jews... For we saw His star in the east and have come to worship Him.” Matthew 2:2
As He stood before Pilate, Jesus was asked, “Are You the King of the Jews?”
And Jesus replied: “You have said it.” Mark 15:2
When Pilate presented the prisoner Jesus to the crowd of Jews which was calling for His crucifixion, he asked, “Then what do you want me to do with the One you call the King of the Jews?” Mark 15:12
As the Roman soldiers tortured and abused Jesus, they mocked Him and said, “Hail, King of the Jews!” Mark 15:18
To mock the Jews even further, Pilate had a sign nailed to Jesus' cross which all passersby would see: "Jesus the Nazarene the King of the Jews." John 19:19
The Jewish religious leaders objected, “Don’t write, ‘The King of the Jews,’ but that He said, ‘I am the King of the Jews.’” John 19:21
There are no two ways about it. Jesus was a Jew, and He was not a Palestinian. To use Jesus as a pawn in the game of Islam-driven politics is not just deplorable, it is blasphemous. It also shows the depths to which these men are willing to go to push their anti-Semitic agenda forward.
Far too many of the Palestinians are, in fact, poor and oppressed, but it is only because they and their leaders have chosen to follow a religion which promotes hatred and violence of their literal neighbors, as opposed to the "Love thy neighbor" teaching of both Judaism and Christianity.
For as long as the Palestinians believe in Allah and Muhammad, they will continue to think it their religious duty to exterminate the Jews. No one can expect peace to ever come to the Middle East for as long as that mindset prevails.
They need Jesus, Who is the Prince of peace. One encounter with Him, and their hatred for Jews and Christians will melt away. What Jesus has done for us who have met Him, He can and will do for them, too...
and to save the lost."
Jesus is Lord!
Whose Land Is It Anyway? Part 1
Whose Land Is It Anyway? Part 2
Whose Land Is It Anyway? Part 3
Whose Land Is It Anyway? Part 4