The power of belief. The Jewish People believed for thousands of years that they would return. The People of the Book read the prophecies of Isaiah and Ezekiel and Jeremiah and throughout the trials and tribulations of the long and wretched exile, they believed. And they hoped. Perhaps that is the secret of their survival. The prophets prophesied about the horrors of the exile, and the Jewish People believed that if those prophecies came about, then, so too, would the rest. So they waited, they prayed, they read the bible and the prophets and endured. Throughout centuries of persecution. the Roman enslavement, the Spanish inquisition, the crusades, the programs, the forced conversions, killings, torture, the anti-semitic decrees, the holocaust, terrorism. They endured it all. And believed that God’s promise would come to be. The People of Israel believe in their God and He believes in them.
We can see this appreciation and love for the Jewish People in Jeremiah (2:2): “Go, and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying: Thus says the LORD: I remember the devotion of your youth, how, as a bride you loved Me and followed Me through the wilderness, in a land that was not sown.”