Leviticus 18:28 (Artscroll English Tanach):

"Let not the land disgorge you for having contaminated it, as it disgorged the nation that was before you"

The commentary for this verse says:

"The land's holiness cannot tolerate the sort of sins described in this chapter, and it was about to vomit out its Canaanite inhabitants because they persisted in these activities. When the Jews themselves began to indulge in such behavior, they too, were disgorged."

From this passage and this commentary I understand that this land was (and still of course) already Holy before the Israelites entered it, and among all the pagan nations, the inhabitants of this land were the most severely punished due to their idolatry and driven out of this land.

Why this land is holy ? Why G-d choose this land for Israelites and not any other land ?

P.S: I know because of the promise to Abraham, but my point is why this land specifically ?

  • 2
    Sourceless, off-the-cuff, answer: 1- The climate requires rain, and thus prayer, rather than reliance on a body of water. 2- Ideas discussed in the location where the three continents where the bulk of humanity lived will spread the fastest. 3- Adam was made on the Temple mount. (And one needn't be a literalist about Creation to believe that the first homo sap, the "clay", in whom a self-aware soul woke up was in Israel.) Dec 9, 2015 at 17:26
  • @MichaBerger good points, but what made you think that Adam was made on the temple mount ? (I am not a Jew so I don't know if something similar was mentioned in the Talmud)
    – mil
    Dec 9, 2015 at 17:30
  • It is from Targum Jonathan, attributed to Rabbi Yonasan ben Uzziel (1st cent BCE), the looser and more interpretive of the standard Aramaic translations of the Torah. See also Saba Hillel's answer, which shows how widely accepted this idea is within Jewish tradition. Dec 9, 2015 at 17:45
  • @MichaBerger That Targum is not attributed to R Yonasan ben Uzziel. Only the work called "Targum Yonason" on Neviim is. The one on the Torah is of unknown, and probably relatively late, authorship.
    – Double AA
    Dec 9, 2015 at 17:49
  • That's why I used the word "attributed". My point was just that its origins are early enough to make that mistake possible. Dec 9, 2015 at 17:56

1 Answer 1


This location was chosen by Hashem to have special kedusha from the moment of creation. The Har Habayis was maintained as a holy site for a mizbeach from the time of Adam Harishon.

We could consider that since the torah is the blueprint of creation, no matter what location had been the starting point of creation, the land around it would have become like Eretz Yisrael. In any case, this is a matter of maasei beraishis and is not a subject for a public forum.

Rambam sefer Avodah Hilchos Bais Habechira 2:2

I think that there is an online copy but I am not sure where so I am translating from a printed version.

The mesorah that we all have is that the place that Dovid and Shlomo built the mizbeach in the threshing field of Arunah was the place that Avraham built the mizbeach and bound on it Yitzchak. And that is the place that Noach built on when he left the ark. And that is the mizbeach that Kayin and Hevel offered upon. And that is [the mizbeach] that Adam brought a korbon when he was created and that is the point creation started. The chchamim say that Adam brought his kapara (atonement) at the place he was created.

  • A Hebrew online copy: he.wikisource.org/wiki/… Dec 9, 2015 at 17:44
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    And why did He choose that spot?
    – Double AA
    Dec 9, 2015 at 17:50
  • @DoubleAA Whatever spot that was the beginning of creation would have been that spot. That is all the following events would have been centered around it. Once creation started there then everything else (including the kedushah of the land) necessarily follows. I am not sure what you are asking Dec 9, 2015 at 17:57
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    @sabbahillel How did He choose this spot to begin creation at? Or was it just random (gotta start somewhere) and we ended up with this sliver of land in the Middle East?
    – Double AA
    Dec 9, 2015 at 18:52
  • @DoubleAA I would say that it is like having looked into the Torah for the blueprint. That is, given the starting point and the Torah, the next level of the ring of creation were determined and so forth. Thus the determination of Eretz Yisrael was such that wherever the creation point was, Eretz Yisrael would have been created around it. More than that is part of maase breishis and I am not on a level to get anywhere near that, even on the level of being allowed to be the student. Dec 9, 2015 at 19:11

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