Israel is a bit out of sorts with the rest of the Middle East. While huge quantities of oil have been found in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iran among others, Israel has not found any and has been forced to import oil.
Some Israelis blame Moses for the lack oil, joking if he had turned right instead of left, Israel would be swimming in black gold. But that was not the direction to the Promised Land.
However, this may have all changed.
This past fall, Afek Oil and Gas (AOG) announced a major oil discovery in the Golan heights found in Israel near the border of Syria. Israel took this land from Syria during the 1967 Six Day War started by the Egyptian President Gamal Nasser who was attempting to unite the Arab world to wipe out Israel.
Though this Arab coalition suffered a disastrous defeat, the area is still a bone of contention with Syria.
Speaking on behalf of AOG in an interview with Foxnews, geologist Yuval Bartov said:
“We are talking about a strata which is 350 metres thick and what is important is the thickness and porosity. On average in the world, strata are 20-30 metres thick, so this is ten times as large as that, so we are talking about significant quantities.”
The oil would not only bring wealth to Israel but cut its dependence on outside sources for energy. Israel consumes about 270,000 barrels of oil daily.
The actual oil extraction is a few years off and there is no indication of how much oil is in the reserve or its quality.
Afek Oil and Gas is a subsidiary of Genie Energy backed by Iranian-born business man Robert Murdoch and former US Vice President Dick Cheney.
But curiously there are a number of Bible verses that suggest there may be oil in Israel.
One verse said that oil would be the tribe of Asher’s inheritance (Deuteronomy 33:24) as Asher would “dip his foot in oil.”
Though this verse could refer to olive oil, another verse in Genesis points to Israel receiving blessing from above and “blessings of the deep that lies beneath” (Genesis 49:25 NASV). Deuteronomy 33:13 also speaks of treasures deep in the ground beneath Israel and verse 19 of that chapter adds:
“They will call peoples to the mountain;
There they will offer righteous sacrifices;
For they will draw out the abundance of the seas,
And the hidden treasures of the sand.” (Deuteronomy 33:19 NASV)
Another verse says Israel will receive oil from rock. Though many have interpreted this verse figuratively, oil is often found embedded in sedentary rock.
“He made him ride on the high places of the earth,
And he ate the produce of the field;
And He made him suck honey from the rock,
And oil from the flinty rock, (Deuteronomy 32:13 NASV)
Based on these verses, Zion Oil and Gas, owned by American evangelical Christian John Brown, was formed to look for oil in Israel. Though it is not part of this find, the company is searching for oil in Northern Israel in land considered part of Asher’s inheritance.