Ask the Rabbi sessions are always unpredictable. Any topic is fair game, and being thrown a curveball is not uncommon. Therefore last week when I participated in an Ask the Rabbi forum, I should not have been surprised by the first question: "Should Benjamin 'Bibi' Netanyahu announce that Israel is our G‑d-given land?"

Bibi's major policy address yesterday has left a lot of people unhappy. Did Bibi blink in the face of American pressure by accepting a (sort of) Palestinian State? Has he sent the ball soaring back into the world's court by insisting that Israel must be accepted as a secure Jewish homeland and that our claim predates the Holocaust, the British Mandate, Ottoman Empire and Roman conquest?

But I think that the question posed to me this past week is perhaps the most germane of all.

In this week's Torah portion (Numbers 13-15) we read about the Jewish nation's first attempt to enter their homeland. Here's the background: Ten spies returned from their reconnaissance mission in Canaan with a slanderous report, causing the demoralized Jews to doubt their ability to conquer the Land. Due to their lack of faith, G‑d decreed that that generation would indeed not enter the Promised Land. Realizing their mistake, a group of Jews made an about-face; they armed themselves and prepared to enter the land by force.

Moses warned this group not to go, "It will not succeed! Do not go up," he entreated, "for G‑d is not among you!"

But the group would not be dissuaded. A battle ensued and the would-be conquerors were mercilessly beaten back by the Canaanites.

From the contentious reference to the "Rock of Israel" in Israel's Declaration of Independence to Bibi's latest policy address, G‑d has been conspicuously missing in Israeli public discourse. Whilst happy to attribute minimal losses from constant attritional rocket attacks to "miracles," giving G‑d proper credit seems to be unthinkable.

As a Jewish nation in a Jewish land, G‑d and His values, as espoused in the Torah – and clearly expressed in the Talmud and the Code of Jewish Law – must be part of our national discourse. G‑d has much to say about who are the rightful owners of the Land and about how to defend Jewish life and live in peace.

After three thousand years, Moses' message must still resonate for us. Whether in our business dealings, personal relationships or the Arab-Israeli conflict, if G‑d is not with us, ultimately "it will not succeed." For this reason, since time immemorial the term b'ezrat Hashem, "G‑d willing," has been part of our vocabulary. A true peace must include G‑d in the agreement.

May it be speedily in our time. G‑d willing.