A Defending Crusader…

The best defense is to be good and offensive…or something like that.

The Church and Israel

Posted by Godefroi on December 14, 2007

I don’t agree with EVERYTHING this gentleman has to say, but on the subject of the insidious pervasiveness of anti-Jew bias in too much of the organized Church he’s spot-on.

Do read the whole thing…he has much, much more to peruse and ponder at his site.

Nod: Solomonia

 

How is it that Christians in many denominations are OK with an anti-Jewish animus being expressed by their own churches?

[…]

Churches … have access to mainstream United States society. (The National Council of Churches, for example, often claims that it ‘represents’ fifty million Christians.) It is true that the public political statements of many churches are devoutly ignored, but they are capable of a slow, consistent, unceasing campaign that eventually filters into the common dialogue and poisons the well for any meaningful conversation or change. These create curricula for their members, presenting information from a trusted source, transforming attitudes. These indulge in publicity stunts, disgraceful worship services (that are more about political theater than anything whatsoever to do with God), and highly visible actions that gradually legitimate their peculiar agendas. Over time, when they have repeated the same statements often enough, these acquire the status of fact – no matter how incorrect or even offensive they might be, and no matter how they were originally perceived.

…The unfortunate fact is that in many cases church organizations do not confine themselves to those activist endeavors that are morally good, or even morally neutral. It is true that these organizations often do participate in what can be rightly termed good, what is probably well-intentioned, and what is potentially helpful; but so far, they have not confined themselves to those things. Instead they have supplemented the positive with the morally problematic anti-Israel / anti-Zionist approach, and with the utterly reprehensible anti-Jewish approach. The corpus of public statements, actions, and information disseminated by these church organizations is far too large to treat systematically here, but for representative instances of this activism please see “Example One: Email List Endorsed by a Mainline Denomination”, “Example Two: Study Guide”, “Example Three: Sabeel Event”. For more detailed (but far from exhaustive) examples from one denomination, see “With an Everlasting Hatred: The Case of Israel and Corruption in the PC(USA)”.

[…]

Supporting the Destruction of the Current State of Israel. …. That activist church groups support this assertion, but support the destruction of no other state in existence evidences an extraordinary anti-Israel animus.

[…]

…So far, there has been a conspicuous silence among (most of) the members of many Christian denominations. Some continue to vocally attempt to defend the indefensible. Large majorities simply continue to attend worship services, participate in their communities, observe the holidays, financially and morally provide uncritical support to factions that misuse their religion as a weapon to advance alien agendas; all the while, what can only be described as a gross evil grows up among them. This curious silence in the face of the most rank anti-Jewish statements and actions is odious across the board, but it is particularly striking as a moral failure among Christians. I say this not because that specific moral failure is unusual in history – in fact, over the last two millennia church organizations have often (though not always) led the way in terms anti-Jewish hatred. What makes it striking is the fact that it violates everything Christianity claims to be about. To the partisans: please take care how you conduct yourselves because there is a very great danger here. If the anti-Israel bias and anti-Jewish statements and actions are unintentional, move to correct them. To the unaligned members: if the leading partisan factions of various denominations insist on maintaining this, so far unrelenting, campaign of anti-Israel bias, anti-Jewish provocation, and the provision of false information others, please do not become complicit in this evil: privately correct this if possible, or publicly oppose your own leaders if you must. Christians cannot evade responsibility just because we are not in positions of power in so-called Christian organizations. When we attend, fund, affiliate with, support in any way organizations that engage in loathsome behaviors, we become guilty. Instances of official anti-Jewish animus have happened many times in the Church; and many times the members have participated or at best remained silent. It is still early in US churches – this direction can still be stopped – before it achieves the horrendous results it has so often done in the past. But if we do not stand up this now – if we do not reject the message sent from leading factions in many “Christian” denominations while it is still a minority opinion and has not yet fully developed – we will forfeit (once again) any claim to decency, morality, or Christian witness. It seems to me the time to ask: how will the future view our actions now? Will this become yet another chapter in Church history where the gulf fixed between Christian theory and Christian practice is insurmountable? Will this become yet another thing for which future Christians will have to apologize or try to make excuses? The old line that the actions of church organizations and the inactions of majorities of Christians don’t really reflect true Christianity is growing very thin. So far the silence speaks volumes.

Will Spotts

 

 

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3 Responses to “The Church and Israel”

  1. Many thanks for the pointer.

  2. lirun said

    just saying thank you for the words of support that helped me bounce back into my groove

  3. Godefroi said

    You’re both very welcome.

    Lirun, I’m glad you’re back.

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