Church

Church of England Supports an Anti-Israel Group

The Trumpet website reports today (July 13, 2012) that the governing body of the Church of England voted on July 9 to support a pro-Palestinian group dedicated to the demonization of of Israel.

The General Assembly passed a motion to endorse the Ecumenical Accompaniment Program in Palestine and Israel (EAPPI) — a group that blames Israel for the failure of the peace process and calls for a boycott of Israel, as well as the hacking of government websites and a sit-in at Israel’s embassies.

The Church of England motion was endorsed by 201 votes to 54, with 93 abstentions.

The Israeli Embassy in England criticized the motion, saying, “By supporting this group, the Church of England has chosen to amplify one-sided voices and to single out Israel — the only country (in the Middle East) where Christian rights are enshrined and the Christian population is growing.”

Source

The Church of England has lost it, completely! Christians have a Biblical obligation to stand by Israel and the Jewish people (Gen 12:3), and pray for the peace of Jerusalem (Ps 122:6). But then the C of E has little regard for that which is Biblical, anymore.

 

 

39 thoughts on “Church of England Supports an Anti-Israel Group

  1. Sorry, Father, I have to disagree with the tenor of this kind of argument. I do not accept the proposition that Christians ought to support the continued existence of the State of Israel as it presently operates .”Israel Right or Wrong” may well be the effective foreign policy mantra of the US Government but is not one which will contribute to peace and stability in the region.

    The Balfour Declaration called for the establishment of a Jewish National Home in Palestine not the creation of a Jewish State out of Palestine. Even that objective was based on a flawed concept. There is in reality no doctrine of a “right of return”. Were there to be such a right, then genetic evidence suggests that the appropriate place for the descendants of the tribes of Israel might well be in Iraqi Kurdistan.

    In my view, one of the worst foreign policy disasters at the end of World War II was the decision of the British Government to surrender the Palestine Mandate. Mandate Palestine could have evolved into a modern state where there was no discrimination based on race, colour or creed and indeed there were sensible proposals put to President Trueman by Mr Lessing J Rosenwald of the American Council for Judaism – preserved in the Trueman Library – see http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/israel/large/documents/newPDF/67.pdf.

    Unfortunately, those proposals – which included solving the immediate problen of the Holocaust survivors in Europe by the granting of immigation visas to the USA for many more displaced persons – came up against the same anti-semitism which pre-war had so greatly hindered the admission to the USA of Jews seeking to flee Hitler’s Germany.

    We have to accept that what has been done cannot ever be completely undone. The concept of nation states is now firmly settled and it is also firmly settled law than no nation should discriminate against its inhabitants by reason of race, colour or creed.

    As of now the only viable solution is the “two state” solution – but with each of the two states required not to discriminate within their respective territories. One could then eventually envisage a customs union, free movement of capital and labour, and the sort of gradual evolution into a federation or confederation which today characterises the different states of the USA and the different nations of the the EU.

    1. Indeed, Mourad, politics is a messy affair. But I am of the honest theological opinion that Christians have the Biblical mandate to stand by the Jewish people. This is not a romanticised notion – am aware of the politics, Judaism, encompassing secular Jews, Ultra-orthodox and Messianics as well as a host of offshoots and sects within the religion. But God chose these people to reveal salvation history. That alone, says much.

      Let me also refer to the relevant portions of the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

      #839 “Those who have not yet received the Gospel are related to the People of God in various ways.”
      The relationship of the Church with the Jewish People. When she delves into her own mystery, the Church, the People of God in the New Covenant, discovers her link with the Jewish People, “the first to hear the Word of God.” The Jewish faith, unlike other non-Christian religions, is already a response to God’s revelation in the Old Covenant. To the Jews “belong the sonship, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; to them belong the patriarchs, and of their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ”, “for the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable.”

      #840 And when one considers the future, God’s People of the Old Covenant and the new People of God tend towards similar goals: expectation of the coming (or the return) of the Messiah. But one awaits the return of the Messiah who died and rose from the dead and is recognized as Lord and Son of God; the other awaits the coming of a Messiah, whose features remain hidden till the end of time; and the latter waiting is accompanied by the drama of not knowing or of misunderstanding Christ Jesus.

      And I quote from the once British Prime Minister, Benjamin Disraeli, who adds an additional perspective: Queen Victoria of England once reportedly asked her then Prime Minister (Disraeli) the following question: “Mr. Prime Minister, what evidence can you give me of the existence of God?” And after he thought for a moment, he replied, “The Jew, your majesty.”

      I think that what he was trying to say was that to his mind, the primary evidence that God exists was (is) the existence of the Jewish people.

      1. Very nice Fr. Stephen! WE both are on the very same page here! If GOD does not sustain His promises to natural/national Israel, how do we know he will sustain His promises to the Gentile Church and Gospel? But thanks be to God, Holy Scripture tells us God certainly will sustain both! (Rom. 11: 28-29 (noting too verses 30-32, etc. See also Rom. 15: 8-9, etc.)

        And for my British or English friend, Mourad, from your own argument.. God is Sovereign and providential… ‘We have to accept that what has been done cannot ever be completely undone.’ And God has His plan and purpose, in the Salvation History and Covenant/covenants of God, (Eph. 2:12, etc.)

        “Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God.” (1 Cor. 10:32)

        “Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.” (Eph. 3: 21) And of course the Church is in this age, both Jew & Gentile, but neither are there removed, nor abrogated, but both fulfilled ‘In Christ’! (Luke 21:24-27, etc.) And it is here btw, that theologically, “Eschatology precedes soteriology.” (Geerhardus Vos)

      2. Btw, Fr. S., seeking to balance theologically the Ippissima Vox (the very voice) with the Ippissima Verba, is always a challenge for me! Those of us that believe and revere the Word of God must really always feel this I think!. Of course my place of “authority” is first and foremost the Holy Scripture, but certainly placed within the Historical Church Catholic. Also I think it really bears upon us who pastor-shepherd and teach, to biblically-theologically challenge our flock! (1 Tim. 4: 11-16)…though I am not so young anymore! 😉

  2. Earlier today, I posted on another thread an extract from the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Lumen Gentium, in response to another reader. I’ll insert some breaks in the citation:-

    On Jews and Muslims and other non-Christians:-

    “Finally, those who have not yet received the Gospel are related in various ways to the people of God.

    In the first place we must recall the people to whom the testament and the promises were given and from whom Christ was born according to the flesh. On account of their fathers this people remains most dear to God, for God does not repent of the gifts He makes nor of the calls He issues.

    But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator. In the first place amongst these there are the Mohammedans, who, professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful God, who on the last day will judge mankind.

    Nor is God far distant from those who in shadows and images seek the unknown God, for it is He who gives to all men life and breath and all things, and as Saviour wills that all men be saved.”

    We most certainly have repect and love for the people of Israel. Anti-semitism is an abomination. But the greatest number of Jews are today found not in the State of Israel but in the United states of America. I think it was Abba Eban who said that there were only two places in the world outside of biblical Israel where the Jews had realy felt safe. One was in Muslim Andalusia and the other was in the United States of America. And that is an indictment, not so much of the Arab world, but of so-called Christian Europe and of our attitude to the Jews.

    I old enough to remember being taught by my history master who, I regret to say, was an Irish cleric that the Jews were accursed of God and condemned forever to wander the earth because they were responsible for the killing of Christ. And that was after the Holocaust!

    However, our duty is to the Jewish people wherever they may be, not to a Jewish state.

  3. How does one seperate The Jew, from The Jewish State? If not for The Isrealis, The Holy Land would have been over-run by the Radical Muslims years ago, with the Shrines loved and honored by Christians worldwide, destroyed and replaced with Mosques and Minurettes. We, as a nation, The United States, have an obligation to protect and affirm The Isrealis. Countless treaties have been signed with the Palestinians, and all have been broken by the Palestinians, who attacked the Isrealis in guerrila actions which included sabotage and suicide bombers. The Palestinians have shown that they don’t want Peace, and have pledged to destroy all Jews, everywhere. After the various wars, in which Isreal prevailed, No other Middle-East Nation would accept the Palestinians to immigrate from Isreal. Seams nobody wants them, but they’re willing to supply the Palestinians with Arms, Rockets, and Explosives to use against Isreal. Go figure !

  4. @ John Z

    You make some curious assertions. I suggest you pop over to a good Israeli web site for some historical information, You might start with this page: http://www.zionism-israel.com/zionism_timeline.htm

    Your quick and agile mind will note the following key dates – All AD/CE

    133-135: Second Jewish revolt under Bar Kochba crushed. Judea renamed Palestina. Jews are banned from Jerusalem by Hadrianus Caesar. – Not by Muslims or Christians by pagan Romans

    About 638: Arab conquest of Jerusalem (slightly earlier or later according to different sources). Caliph Omar provides the Christians of Jerusalem with a Covenant guaranteeing their protection. Land divided into the Jund of filastin, in the south (capital in Al-Lod and later in Ramlah), and the Jund of Urdunn in the north, with capital in Tiberias (Tabariyeh) Muslims guarantee the protection of the Christian Holy Places.

    1099: Crusaders conquer Jerusalem, slaughter most Jewish and Moslem inhabitants, expel Jews – an example of Christian peace?

    1187: Saladin (Salah-al-din) reconquers Jerusalem

    1291: Crusaders defeated at Acre and evicted from Palestine.

    1517: Ottoman Turkish conquest of Palestine.

    1740: Ottoman Sultan invites Rabbi Haim Abulafia (1660-1744), Kabbalist and Rabbi of Izmir, to come to rebuild the city of Tiberias; thousands of Jews immigrate to the land in a wave of Messianic fervor, including Rabbi Moses Haim Luzzatto (1707-1746). – The first diaspora Jews were invited back to Israel by a Muslim ruler

    !517 – 1917: Palestine was part of the Ottoman Empire until it was conqured by the British at the tail end of WW1. How did the Christian Holy Places fare during those 300 years.? The Ottoman Sultans placed them under special protection. Remember (i) a very substantial number of the Palestinians were Chrstians (ii) Jesus is revered in Islam as a Prophet (iii) at the most holy Christian sites most of the disturbances were not between Jews and Christians OR Muslims and Christians, but between different varieties of Christians which were resolved under the terms of a 1757 Ottoman arrangement which lasted until the British Mandate.

    The Turkish Sultan invited Jews fleeing the Spanish Catholic inquisition to settle in the Turkish empire, including several cities in Palestine.

    1844: First census in Jerusalem shows 7120 Jews, 5760 Muslims, 3390 Christians. – Arab Christians and Muslims outnumber the Jewish population.

    1860: First Jewish settlement (Mishkenot Sha’ananim) outside Jerusalem walls.

    1878: First Zionist Settlement – Petah Tikwa

    1881-1885: Wave of Russian pogroms catalyzes First Aliya (wave of immigration to Israel). – A direct consequence of Christians persecuting Jews.

    1903: Kishinev Pogrom and Russian Pogroms of 1905 catalyze Second Aliya

    1917: British issued the Balfour Declaration, promising a “National Home” for the Jews in Palestine European Pogroms: Christians mudering Jews – by no means confined to Russia – were the root cause of the development of Zionism and the British agrrement to meet the demand of Jews to have a “national Home IN (not OF)” Palestine.

    Now cast your eyes over this page which shows the relative population figures of Palestine broken down by ethnicity: .http://mideastweb.org/palpop.htm.

    As the webmaster correctly observes – all the figures are disputed by one side or another, but these estimates are about as fair as is possible. By 1914 there were perhaps about 60,000 Jews in Palestine and, say, 550,000 Arabs divided between Jews and Christians.
    The 1922 census gives 589,177 Muslims (78.34%,) 83,790 Jews, (11.14% ) and 71,464 Christians (9.50%) with the 7,617 Others being just 1.01%. At no time from Hadrian’s Expulsion in the 1st Century AD to 1917 and the British Mandate did the Jewish population of Israel exceed 10% of the total poulation. And just as with the Reconquista of Muslim Andalusia, European Christians persecuted the Jews – who where possible fled to the Ottoman Empire where they were pretty well received by the standards of that time – just as they had in Muslim Andalusia.

    While you are reflecting on that, I’ll work on some further material for your consideration.

    1. @Mourad: One can’t help but wonder what is your point? As John Z has said, the Jewish state of modern Israel is simply huge! And I maintain the Nation of Israel will move the “world” to or toward the stage of the Eschatological End, whenever it comes! (Zech. 14: 4 / Rev. 1: 7)

      1. It’s not for us to speculate about or scheme and plan and push towards Judgement Day. None of us know when that will happen. For all we know, Israel will be dissolved again. I’d be careful to put my faith in an earthly Jewish principality, comprised of a people who historically betrayed God’s Covenant with them repeatedly and put to death God’s prophets and condemned even His Only Begotten Son.

      2. No, we call this in theology, eschatology! And I am certainly Historic Pre-Millennial, and pro-Israel, and even a “Biblical” Zionist! And there will be simply no disintegration of Modern Israel without a “cataclysm” on the world stage! (No more desolation of Israel, before the Second Coming!) But here we can see Zech 14! Btw, am I the only one that quotes the Holy Scripture on this subject? Again, this is a question of biblical theology to my mind! 😉

      3. Yes, I know a little about eschatology, and that there are those who subscribe to dispensationalism or covenant theology. To save time (and avoid inaccuracy on my part) here’s a tidbit from Catholic.com:

        ‘Catholics acknowledge that the Church is spiritual Israel or, in Catholic parlance, the “new Israel” (cf. CCC 877). This too is indicated in Paul’s writings: In Romans 9:6 he says that “not all who are of Israel are Israel.” This indicates the existence of two Israels. One—”all who are of Israel”—indicates the ethnic people, not all of whom believe in Jesus. The other Israel, the context reveals, does not include those who have rejected the Messiah. This new Israel, founded by Messiah, exists in spiritual continuity with the Old Testament saints and so counts as a “spiritual Israel.” It includes Gentiles who believe in the Messiah and so through baptism are spiritually circumcised (Col. 2:11–12) and are reckoned as spiritual Jews (Rom. 2:26–29)… In his letter to the Ephesians Paul is even more explicit about the Gentiles’ spiritual inclusion when he states that “you Gentiles in the flesh . . . were [once] separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel . . . But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near . . . So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints” (2:11–13, 19).

        Thus the Catholic Church, not being constrained by the new theological systems of dispensationalism and covenant theology, is able to avoid the extremes of both while it acknowledges the truths both contain—as it has since before either was invented. ”

        From this, it seems that digging through the prophets seems to give way to speculation about the End Times, when we should be more focused on what we do at the present, so that we’ll have no problems when arriving at the Four Last Things; Death, Judgement, Heaven, or Hell. As for the Final, Final, Judgement accompanying Parousia (see, I can use fancy words too!) I am not going to say anything like the anti-Catholic “Left Behind” series because I’d prefer to keep my understanding close to what the Creed says about what we should expect: His coming in glory, a general resurrection, a final judgement, and His Kingdom that will have no end. Maybe it is better if we leave the rest a mystery.

    2. Well, imagine that ! My only concern is for the Protection of The Holy Land, and for the survival of Gods’ Chosen People. History, for me, is from 1944 to present (Other than bible History) My ‘Family’ immigrated to America at the turn of the century (19th), and we were not involved in the discrimination prevelant in those days. My Grandmother worked for Jewish People all of her working life. What policies on Jewish Immigration existing during the war years and after cannot be denied, but it seemed to be changed by the late fifties. Albert Einstine made it here allright !

      1. @ John Z

        You write “History for me, is frorm 1944 to present”. If you were born in 1944, as I was, then of course you do not bear any personal responsibility for the persecution and discrimination which went on before you were of an age to do anything about it. But without a knowledge of history often one cannot know what the best solution to a given problem is. This is particularly so when it comes to the exercise of power by states.

      2. Not bragging, but I’ve allways been a History Buff (‘A’ student), and one of the reasons I love the Internet.I’ve worn-out my families Encyclopedia Britanica, and still cannot get enough of it today. Take everything I post with a grain of salt, for I have a very dry humor, and I like to use it often, unless it would offend.
        Peace be with you.

  5. @ Irishanglican

    I rather agree with Ioannes that your comment does seem to smack of dipensationalism one of the dottier 57+ varieties of so-called “reformed” sects. I have little interest in wasting time on heretical views.

    I am much more interested in dispelling the pernicious falshoods about the Palestinians who comprise both Catholics and Muslms and who managed to live in harmony with Jews throughout the Ottoman Sultanate ANd protect the Holy places. I think it is high time we acnowledged that European Anti-Semitism countenances by Christians was the primary causation of Zionism and all the rest that flowed from OUR persecution of and prejudice against the Jews – prejudice which, as I was at pains to point out in my first post, was passed on to me by an Irish cleric. I have since learned better.

    @ John Z

    No country in Europe was entirely free of Anti Semitism. Up to 1914 the most violent events against Jews were the Crusades, the Reconquisata and the pogroms in the Russian Empire. But no country was immume, including my own.

    Jews wee invited to Britain by Willam the Conqueror but were expelled by Edward I in 1290. They were not permmited to settle again until 1656. The first synagogue was founded at Bevis Makes in 1701 and is still there – a national monument. You can visit it on-line at http://www.bevismarks.org.uk/ – but although toerated , Jews were not fully emancipated until 1858. Today there are around 300,000 Jews in the UK – the second largest community in
    Europe.

    After the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in 1917 Britain was given the Mandate to administer Palestine and the objectives were (i) to enable Palestine to develop into a modern state and to encourage the development of the “Jewish National home in Palestine by a policy of encouraging Jewish immigation. Mandate Palestine started out with a Jewish population of just 10% of the total. During the interwar years the Jewish population rose from 83,700 to
    384,000 an increase from 11% to 28% of the total. The gradual assimilation process seemed to be working.

    World War II and the worst atrocity ever in a nominally Christian part of the World put paid to that. The Holocaust committed largely by people brought up as Christians resulted in the murder of 6 million Jews and the defeat of Germany left 250,000 Holocaust Survivors in the most extreme destitution in the wreckage of postwar Europe. Now read agan the Rosenberg propals to President Truman which you will find on my first post. What was asked for was
    a tempoarary waver of US Immigration policy to provide immediate refuge for as many of the Survivors as possible. The State Department was violently opposed.
    US Immigration policy pre-war had deliberately made it difficult for Jewish immigrants to get into the USA and now the same Department wanted to keep it that way. The USA insisted that 100,000 of the survivors go to Palestine. The UK emphasised that Palestine would not survive such a rapid increase in the Jewish population. Neverthless the UK reluctantly tried to comply. As predicted, intercommunal violence broke out.

    Britain was bankrupt in 1947. Food rationing was more severe than it had been during the war. Even bread was rationed. The government could not cope with or finance the maintenance of law and order in Palestine, Jewish terrorism against the British Mandate commenced. The government dumped the problem into the lap of the newly formed UN and Trueman rejected the Rosenberg proposals and the State of Israel was created.

    “What if’s” are rarely useful in history. But in ethics they can be. Of course, the proximate cause of the Jewish refugee problem post WW2 was the War and the Holocaust.

    But what if the WASP establishment of the USA had not been itself so rabidly anti-semitic, wih its denial to Jews of memberships of country clubs, employment, even housing? What if the Rosenberg proposals had been accepted and the 250,000 Holocaust survivors all been given refuge in the USA? Would the USA, the richest country in the world have coped? Of course it would, the USA is a “can do” country. Would it have profited? Of course it would – look at what those same survivors and their descendants have accomplished in the state of Israel.

    Might a multi-ethnic and non discriminating Palestine have survived if the rate of immigration had been more gradual? We shall never know for certain.

    But you might ask youself if today’s unqualified US support for Israel (right or wrong) is not, at least subconsciously, motivated by the knowledge that US anti-semitism certainly prevented the pre-war entry to the USA of many Jews who were seeking to flee the Holocaust and later became it victims. The US refusal post war to consider the Rosenberg proposals also played a part in the demise of a Palestine where Muslims Christians and Jews were once able to live in peace side by side.

    1. OH! It almost slipped my mind. The dwindling Christian population, (which I have read to be less then 2%) in the Holy Land are mostly Palestinian Christians. I’d rather support them than either the Jew or the Muslim. As for the State of Israel, I don’t know too much and cannot really say about its complicated state of affairs, other than its citizens are willing to fight for the establishment and survival of their own country, which is apparently secular, but mostly Jewish in ethnicity. Those belligerent Palestinian nationalists, I don’t know if they want an Islamic State (Hamas?) or a secular one (Fatah?), or if they’re united anyways. I’d rather root for the ones that puts forth the well-being and security of the Palestinian and all other Christians and guards their right to worship.

      1. Ill be on to the issue of why Palestinian Christians are leaving. BTW The state of Israel is not secular It systematically discriminates against Christians and Muslims (arab=bad) but some Jewish sects refuse to recognise it. In other words the present situation is a mess. I’ll deal with Islamist groups in due course. But please do support the Palestinian Christians.

    2. @Mourad: I am not a “Dispensationalist” strictly speaking, but I do find much help in the so-called PD, or Progressive Dispensationalism, which is akin to the Covenant and Historic Pre-Millennialism. See if you care the books (both written in the early 90’s): Progressive Dispesnsationalism, by Craig Blaising and Darrell Bock, and The Case For Progressive Dispensationalism, The Interface Between Dispensational & Non-Dispensational Theology, by Dr. Robert Saucy.

      *Note, in my long theological past I have been both Post-Mill and A-Mill. But living and teaching in Israel in the late 90’s was a grand providence! And I love the Jewish people and see Modern Israel as certainly God’s will and plan. And as I have said before, I fought in Gulf War 1 (RMC’s), as too trained with the Israeli commando’s, shortly after. So yes, I am involved at many levels here, and I am always a conservative, both politically and theologically. Anyone, that cannot see radical and just Islam generally involved, in the times today, and toward an eschatological place, better look very carefully! Humanity will not survive the 21st century in my opinion, and I am not alone here! WE are at the end of the age, all the signs are there!

      1. Atheism is the greatest threat in the history of Humanity. I don’t know the amount of death under Islam in its 1,400 years of history, but I have great certainty, that if humanity is destroyed within our century, it would be an amoral, godless people behind it. Numbers don’t lie, and neither does History. (usually)

        Mao-Tse-Tung, Atheist: 40 million plus dead
        Joseph Stalin, Atheist: 20 million plus dead
        Adolf Hitler, Atheist: 15 million dead (Raised Catholic, committed suicide a self-worshiper)
        Kim-Il-Sung, Atheist: 5 million dead
        Pol Pot, Atheist: 2 million dead
        Fidel Castro, Atheist: 1 million dead

        All within the span of 100 years. And now, we face a resurgence in atheistic thought, people who put faith in themselves, in science and technology over God- I don’t think Islam is the problem, but it is a symptom. ATHEISM is the problem, as it is Anti-Christ in its very essence, and worms its way into the hearts and minds of the masses.

      2. All the signs have been there many times from the Apostles to the Church Fathers, St. Augustine, to the modern Popes. The end of an age does not indicate the end of mankind. We will go on, although some will pray for a mercifull death, as life will be greatly different and harsh. Christ will rule his Church in an era of Peace for a thousand years, and then the Evil One will be unchained to subvert and cull mankind for a time, and then be cast into the fiery pit with the remainder of mankind that he has taken for himself. This will usher in the FINAL JUDGEMENT, and A NEW HEAVEN AND A NEW EARTH JOINED IN A NEW JERUSALEM. Only The Father knows the time when these things will come to pass. I strongly suggest you all go to
        and read through the archives on “The End Of An AGE” and other related material, complete with Bible References and Passages. We may be approaching The End of An Age, and I Pray Constantly for all Mankind, that we may remain firm in Christ Jesus.
        Pardon me for ‘butting in’. Y’all go back to your arguments now (lol).

  6. @ irishanglican

    Sorry not interested in your dispensationalist tendencies. I’ll stick to the orthodox theology of the Church you left, if you don’t mind.

    We are commanded to love the Jewish people.

    As for modern Israel being “part of God’s plan” if one is saintly enough I suppose one looks at an earthquake, or an outbreak of the plague as being “all part of God’s plan” too.

    1. @Mourad: Your last paragraph really betrays your lack for really loving Jewish people and Israel! Israel is the greatest democracy in the region.

      And I can see that your not really theologically or biblically inclined, seeking truth always presses us beyond the status quo!

      1. I thought it was Turkey? Or Lebanon? Goodness knows Lebanese citizens… sort of…. get along with each other. Sort of. (Maybe I’m colored by the fact that there are more Arab Christians there and seem to get along with Muslims. For now.)

    2. Mr. Mourad, I remember that everything is according to God’s Will, and we see that as it unfolds in history. We are, however, given Free Will that God cannot force us to change, and by the Holy Spirit, if we seek God sincerely, we will react to His Grace that is freely given, then we align ourselves to His Will, which ought to be the point of the lives of every human being who have lived.

      Things like earthquake and fires seem destructive, but those same terrible forces also have the ability to contribute to new life. For example, the necessity of death means that the world will gain new growth, and minerals and proteins shall be returned to the Earth, to be remade in however into whatever God wills. This is why even though we will all die someday, I do not presume to judge God, who has every right to take our lives, because He is Lord of Life, who gives and takes, to Whom I owe everything though He owes me nothing.

      Going back to Israel, in it’s modern history, maybe even in the foundation of Ancient Israel under Saul, Israel is a political entity, crafted by fallible men. I don’t know if it was made out of good faith and clear conscience or a sort of idolatry fostered by the idea of nationalism in the 19th century. The fate of that country is not up to any of us, I don’t think, even if Ahmedinejad “wipes it off the map” or if its supporters fight their hardest for it. I would consult with the Prophets, but I’m afraid that I may end up practicing divination when I shouldn’t.

  7. @irishanglican

    You write “Israel is the geatest democracy in the region”. Democracy may well be the best form of government fallible man has yet devised but it is not a prerequisite for salvation. And because man is fallible democracies too can pepetrate great evil if power gets into the wrong hands. Remember Herr Hitler came to power in a democracy. Secondly, one cannot equate the Jewish people with the state of Israel. The Diaspora Jews still outnumber those in Israel. Therefore perhaps our first concern should be how we live in our own communities – in the UK local groups bring together Christians, Mulsims and Jews and much good comes from those initiatives. Finally, many democracies are flawed and a democracy which discriminates on grounds of race or religion is flawed. Israel is no exception.

    1. I am critical of democracy, because it makes people too comfortable in many respects; too much emphasis on the infallible “people” to the point where any uneducated opinion has the same weight as the most informed or at least sensible- this sort of equality often results in shouting matches and resentment.

      No earthly government can ever be perfect, because only God is Perfect.

      I’d be careful not to get too “chummy” with Muslims and Jews. We must be always prepared when people inevitably go into conflict with each other- this involves being concerned with how we live in our own Christian communities and our personal lives. But for the time that no conflict happens, let us support what is good from the non-Christian, while it lasts. Then we fight when necessary.

      1. I am always quite amazed at the X and Y generation sometimes, at least those who have never served in military combat. Many talk about with much criticism, about the democracy of their fathers, grandfathers etc., who many themselves paid the ultimate price for freedom. But indeed freedom is never free, but must always be paid for with human courage and sacrifice! I served with Jews, Protestants and Catholics, and just non-religious, and we gave all for each other! Several of my seeming old mates are in the ground, bodily! And really only those that have seen and felt the depth of combat can even know what I am talking about! Btw, thank God for my fathers and my uncles generation, those who fought in WW II… RIP!

      2. Amen to that irishanglican. My generation was scorned when we came back from Vietnam. We believed we were fighting Communism, and for the South Vietnamese People, who wanted to be free.They spat at us and called us names. And we are a Democracy, how times have changed! Go-figure.

      3. @John Z: I was, as a Royal Marine Commando, attached to the American Marine 3rd Force Recon, out of Phu Bai in the Nam (We got there in Jan. 1968), and saw the Tet out of I Corps. I was wounded many months later, concussion and shrapnel, but I mended nicely in Hawaii. But, thankfully I went back to England. I was a mustang, and later spent over ten years active, and went to Gulf War 1 in my early 40’s. So always Semper Fi to them American Marines!

        And yes, them NVA Commies, were bad little dudes!

      4. What “Democracy of our fathers” are you all talking about? It certainly isn’t the democracy of Athens or Rome, not even of Venice. Even now, Parliamentary democracy isn’t the same as Presidential democracy. Or are we saying the sort of democracy headed by Barack Obama is the same as the democracy headed by Prince-Regent Alois of Lichtenstein?

        Why are all of you amazed at criticism against democracy, aren’t we entitled to such freedoms, to express serious criticism and to find ways to adapt to new situations? To find problems and formulate solutions?

        Of course, my politics isn’t leftist, so I have nothing to say against any of your honorable services against godless communism. We are a different generation, and we cannot fight the last war when facing the new challenges posed by Islam and Secularism, as well as an economy that was caused by people who bought things they don’t need using money that wasn’t theirs, to impress people they don’t like. It wasn’t my generation; we were busy having our self esteem coddled in public school systems. It was the generation with money and ability to deal with banks that basically handed us this problem that we have to face alone when that generation is dead and gone.

        What’s the best that we’ve come up with? Riots and Occupy Wall Street, nothing compared to people like Churchill and “Democracy of our fathers”- I’m critical of democracy NOW, especially when it’s espoused by charismatic, opportunistic politicians who tell us what we like to hear without explaining how to bring it about.

      5. We don’t live in a democracy-per se. Our Founders established a Democratic Republic, where the People run the government. Unfortunately, our system has been hijacked by socialist forces who are attempting to make the government the source of all they think we need, The Nanny State. Fortunately, we have free elections and the power to take back our republic. Viva the Tea Party, and a new year of REAL CHANGE. And it’s still The Greatest Country on Earth, and I’ll go to my grave in that belief!!!

      6. I know that the United States is a Republic. What I’m talking about is the democracy that is confined within the halls of the Capitol Building. I know for a fact that, because we are a Constitutional Republic, we “99%” can’t march around wherever we please and make demands like a child throwing tantrums.

        “Our system has been hijacked by socialist forces who are attempting to make the government the source of all they think we need, The Nanny State.”

        I also know for a fact that the triumphs of these Cultural Marxists has been going on since the 60’s. That’s why when you came home from Vietnam, they spat at you rather than thank you. It is a vile and disgusting way to treat someone. Who let them in positions of power and influence? Since then, they have been incrementally increasing their influence through their hijack of institutions of education, turning them into indoctrination centers, then they’ve been increasing their demands until we have Barack Obama and the sorry state of the nation.

        “Fortunately, we have free elections and the power to take back our republic.”

        Do we? Let’s see in November, if the American people will do it.

        “Viva the Tea Party, and a new year of REAL CHANGE.”

        I sympathize with the Tea Party, but I have minor issues with it that keeps me from embracing it totally. I will not discuss those issues here, because it will deviate too far from (The already far-deviated) discussion about Israel and the question of support for it.

        “And it’s still The Greatest Country on Earth, and I’ll go to my grave in that belief!!!”

        The United States is generally a good country, so far. Let history judge if it’s the greatest. After all, there are other, more ancient countries that have survived greater challenges than what America has faced in its less-than-300-years of history.
        —————————————————————————————–
        Bottom Line: We are Catholic Christians. Let us remember what the Psalmist says about politics:

        Psalm 146

        3 Do not put your trust in princes,
        in mortal men, who cannot save.
        4 When their spirit departs, they return to the ground;
        on that very day their plans come to nothing.

      7. You wrote: “I’d be careful not to get too “chummy” with Muslims and Jews.” Read “Lumen Gentium” again. We all worship the same God! And for the record I agree entirely with the sentiment expressed by irish anglican in his post at 21.43. Those of us who have taken the Queen’s shilling at some time in our lives have had occasion to see the true worth of people of ofther faiths at very close quarters indeed.

    2. @Mourad: Your looking at the wrong end of the scope here, I am looking at the place of the Biblical Salvation History and Covenant/covenants of God. And here national Israel is simply central! If we miss this, then we will miss the “generations”, from Abram/Abraham and the nation of “Israel”, (Gen. 11). Indeed Israel was called to be a witness to the unity of God in the midst of universal idolatry (Deut. 6:4 ; Isa. 43:10-12), and to illustrate the blessedness of serving the true God (Deut. 33:26-29), and also to receive and preserve the divine revelations and to finally produce the Messiah Himself, (Rom. 3:1-2, 9:4-5 Deut. 4:5-8 / Gen. 3:15). St. Paul knew this also, (Rom. 11:25-32, ; 15:8-9)…”I thank God, whom I serve from my forefathers with pure conscience..” (2 Tim. 1:3). Indeed the nation of Israel is biblically a permanent method in the divine goverment of the earth, and Israel is always the centre of the divine counsels on earth, (Deut. 32: 8-9 / Rom. 9-11 / 1 Cor. 10:32-33). We simply must do biblical theology here. GOD, will keep His promises to both Israel and the Gentile nations! (Rom. 15: 8-9) And right now, National Israel is judicially blinded, but Spiritual Israel (both individual Jews and Gentiles) are finding salvation! (Rom. 11) But, this is right now “the times of the Gentiles”, and that fulfillment, then will come the time of National Israel’s salvation, but that will be and come at the end of the age, the Eschatological End! We can see this especially in Zech 14, but then only a “third” of the nation of Israel will survive, (Zech. 13: 9).

      Indeed, the Holy Scripture does not leave us blind as to the general place and pattern of the prophetic and eschatogical realities and final end! But simply, do we believe it? We sadly know that at the end of the age, the true Gospel and the real Christ Himself, will be a sign of contention and even unbelief!

      “And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night to him, though he bear long with them? I tell you that he will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” (Jesus, Lk. 18: 7-8)

      1. Oh, Yes. In The New Jerusalem, but that is not only the end of an age, but the Second Coming , Judgement Day! (The Iranians are hell bent on bringing about that day of ‘the last Imam’, heritics that they are. The Almighty is NOT summoned by man).

Post a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s