This is the Weblog of Mike from FreeRepublic.com, the head of the Christian Supporters of Israel list there. Just another rower down in the hold of the juggernaut which is the American Evangelical Christian support of Israel.

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Saturday, April 07, 2007

Christian Zionists are the Answer To Anti-Semitism

By: Rev. James M. Hutchens, Ph.D. Chaplain (Brigadier General) US Army (Ret) President, The Jerusalem Connection International USA.

Jim Hutchens Chaplain (Brigadier General) US Army (Ret.) President, The Jerusalem Connection, InternationalOn January 14, 2007, a farewell
celebration was given for a timehonored
friend of Christian
Zionists — Israel’s Ambassador to the
United States, Daniel Ayalon and his wife
Anne. Among those who made remarks
was the only survivor of the Holocaust
serving in the U.S. Congress, Tom Lantos
(D-12-CA). Always an eloquent and substantive
speaker, Congressman Lantos
said three times during his remarks,
“Christians are the antidote to anti-Semitism
in America.” Then he asked all Christians
to stand while the rest applauded. It was a
most surprising and humbling moment,
especially for Christians.

As I have thought about Congressman
Lantos’ declaration about the role of
Christians vis-à-vis anti-Semitism, several
observations come to mind.

First of all, I think it is necessary to set
some parameters on use of the term
“Christian.” Not all Christians are going to
fight anti-Semitism. Unfortunately some,
even whole denominations, boldly line up
against the Jews. In thinly veiled charges of
“anti-Zionism” or “anti-Israel imperialism,”
some call for “divestment.” Most
recently in a published book, former
President Carter weighed in by actually
charging Israel with “apartheid.” Some
churches and pastors openly endorse
supersessionism or replacement theology
— the notion that the “church” is the new
Israel and thus the only legitimate heir to
the covenant promises of God. It is naive
to expect these “Christians” to act as an
antidote to anti-Semitism.

Closer to home for me are the views
of evangelicals, because I consider myself
an evangelical. I am finding that more
and more evangelicals, while perhaps
pro-Israel in their hearts, are reluctant to
speak up, especially from the pulpit.
Some are afraid of being labeled “too
political.” One megachurch pastor
turned down exhibiting Bus #19, saying,
“We have so many Arabs in our church
and they would be offended.” Some
believe that to be pro-Israel is to be automatically
anti-Palestinian or anti-Arab
Sadly, these Christians will not be much
help in fighting anti-Semitism. For some,
Jewish matters are just not a priority.
Their silence is and will be deafening.

I understood and deeply appreciated
Congressman Lantos sentiments. We all
did. However, it is more on target to say,
Christian Zionists are the antidote to anti-
Semitism in America. They are the people
who will stand up and be counted because
they believe in God’s eternal covenant with
the Jews. They believe our own destiny
rests with our Jewish elder brothers.

Second, Congressman Lantos’ claim
that “Christians are the antidote to anti-
Semitism in America” presents all
Christians, especially Christian Zionists,
with a daunting challenge. What can we do
that the American Israel Public Affairs
Committee (AIPAC), Anti-Defamation
League (ADL), and other Jewish support
agencies could not do better? They have
been around a long time and are better
organized and financed than we are. They
have a well established network within the
Jewish community. Some of the most
informed and articulate spokesmen for
their concerns live in America. How can
we add to that?

What we add is the fact that we are
Christians and not Jews. Everyone expects
Jews to stand up for themselves against
anti-Semitic onslaughts. However, with
the large number of Christian Zionists in
America, our voices will greatly enlarge the
microphone as we speak out for others as
we would for our own. Further, in view of
our stained and often anti-Semitic past,
Christians standing with Jews is not only a
challenge but it means we have an opportunity
to “get it right this time.”

Finally, Congressman Lantos’ proclamation
presents an enormous responsibility
for Christians. How it will be “fleshed
out” remains to be seen. If the past is any
indication, and I pray it is not, Christians’
courage may be sorely tested when called
upon to secretly house the Anne Franks of
our day. What if Corrie Ten Boom is the
model to be replicated hundreds of times
for Christians to fulfill their mandate as an
“antidote?” Will we stand the test? Will we
choose temporary personal peace over
what is obviously right?

In any case, we had best be standing
with our Jewish friends now against the
growing world-wide anti-Semitism, which
includes America, lest we eventually have
to make the same gloomy confession made
in 1945 by Rev. Martin Niemoller, a
German pastor, during the Nazi era:

“First they came for the Communists,
and I didn’t speak up,
because I wasn’t a Communist.
Then they came for the Jews,
and I didn’t speak up,
because I wasn’t a Jew.
Then they came for the Catholics,
and I didn’t speak up,
because I was a Protestant.
Then they came for me,
and by that time there was no one
left to speak up for me.”

Wake up America! Wake up Christians!
And speak up! NOW!

The Jerusalem Connection International