Some Christians embrace Jews and Israel for the right reasons while others do not.
Matthew M. Hausman, J.D.
Support for Israel among evangelical Christians is a growing phenomenon that has many American Jews scratching their heads and asking questions. Is Christian support sincere or is it merely subterfuge to facilitate the missionary impulse? Do Christian “love offerings” for Israel come with theological strings or are they presented free and clear?
These questions are understandable given the long history of Christian anti-Semitism and missionary excess. However, an alarming number of secular Jews today are so divorced from Jewish tradition and practice that these questions are devoid of historical context. Skepticism regarding evangelical support is often informed by liberal political sensibilities, and suspicion of evangelicals’ motivations is more likely influenced by distrust of their social and political conservatism than by any collective memory of the horrors suffered by the Jews in Europe.
Ironically, those who marginalize Christian Zionists are often the same people who naively sit with Islamist groups in the name of interfaith dialogue, who excuse the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (“BDS”) movement because of its progressive roots, and who preach acceptance of a revisionist Palestinian narrative that denies historical Jewish claims.
Many Christians today believe in Israel’s right to exist. Conversely, few Muslims do, if any.
Whereas Muslim groups with whom liberals seek discourse often believe as a matter of faith that the Jews were subjugated and have no right to sovereignty in their homeland, many Christians support Jewish historical claims and are not afraid to back up their words with actions. Regardless of their motivations, many Christians today believe in Israel’s right to exist. Conversely, few Muslims do, if any.
Such words and actions were on display on May 19th at the “United Jerusalem Day Celebration” sponsored by the Victory Assembly of G-d Church in Sharon, Massachusetts. The program featured a diverse array of speakers, including: Shai Bazak, Israel’s Consul General to New England; Colonel Amnon Meir, the IDF’s Liaison Officer to TRADOC; Cathy Lanyard, Executive Director of American Friends of ALYN Hospital-Jerusalem; and Rabbi Jonathan Hausman, an American congregational rabbi who speaks internationally on Islam, Sharia and free speech issues and who serves on the board of American Friends of ALYN.
The keynote address was delivered by Dr. Pat Robertson, Chairman of the Christian Broadcasting Network, and affecting words were offered by Pastor Joe Green, of Rabbis and Ministers for Israel, Dick Ingram, Senior Pastor of Victory Church, and Rev. Fumio Taku, President of Christians and Jews United for Israel.
The program was billed as “a non-partisan event for all friends of Israel,” and indeed it seemed to be. There was no hint of replacement theology in the remarks offered by any of the Christian clergy, and there were no religious displays that would have offended Jewish sensibilities. Instead of crucifixes, the auditorium was draped in American and Israeli flags. And instead of taking a collection to support church or missionary activities, all donations from the crowd were dedicated to ALYN, …read more