Christian Zionists "Repent" for Church Anti-Semitism
Richard Bartholomew printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Sun Apr 01, 2007 at 02:56:48 PM EST
From the Jerusalem Post:
In a highly symbolic move, dozens of evangelical Christian leaders will present the Knesset with a "letter of repentance" on Wednesday for crimes committed by Christians against the Jewish people over the centuries.

In fact, the letter hardly breaks any new ground; the history of Christian anti-Semitism has been readily acknowledged for decades, and Christian Zionists have for just as long used it as a justification for support for Israeli expansionism. The "presentation" is just another chance for some extra publicity, and for Christian Zionist leaders to come together for yet another conflab:

The letter,...which is being sponsored by a large number of evangelical groups and is the brainchild of the Texas-based Covenant Alliances, will be presented to the Knesset's Christian Allies Caucus in a special session expected to be attended by a few hundred Christian Zionist leaders from around the world.

...The gala event, which will be coupled with the presentation of a "love letter to Israel" declaring their unequivocal support for the State of Israel, will be preceded by a conference on Tuesday dubbed "the Jerusalem Assembly" at a hotel in the capital that will include speeches mixed with prayer sessions.

The subsequent event itself was reported on Y-Net (links added):

Pastor Pitts Evans of Virginia read the letter out before a Knesset hall packed with Evangelicals...

Pastor Seymour Kook, of South Carolina, read out a "love letters to the God of Israel," in which Evangelical signatories said they were "deeply grateful for the root of God's olive tree (and) for every Jewish father of the faith... we stand in faith in our branch, without arrogance, with humility toward your God and the fathers of Israel, who took us in when we could not deserve him and could not find him."

Speaking to Ynetnews, Apostle Zilly Aggfey [should be "Zilly Aggrey" - RB], a Christian leader from Nigeria, said millions of African Christians were keen to "serve Israel."

Poor Zilly seems to have got rather overwrought:

"African Christians would love to kiss the ground in Israel. They would love to kiss the feet of a Jew," he said...

Haaretz notes one MK's involvement:

David Rotem, a Yisrael Beiteinu MK, spoke out against various plans for peace with the Palestinians. "There is a Saudi proposal, an American proposal, a European Union proposal and a Palestinian proposal which are going to endanger the state of Israel," Rotem said and the visitors responded with "Amen."

Rotem is the replacement for Yuri Stern, the MK close to Christian Zionists who died a few months ago. Rotem is an attorney for the Yesha Council of Settlements, and in the past (according to Ian S Lustick) he was also a lawyer for the Gush Emunim Underground, an extremist terrorist group.

The Covenant Alliances, meanwhile, is run by Jodie Anderson, who also heads the Battalion of Deborah at the same P.O. Box. The Battalion of Deborah has a particularly annoying website; whenever you click on anything the ears are assaulted by a clip of Pat Robertson pontificating on "Judea and Samaria". The Covenant Alliances website is uninformative (but mercifully quieter), consisting of a few blog entries from 2005 and 2006. At the head of the page is the "Jerusalem Accord", which was put together by US Christian Zionists and right-wing Israeli MKs in September 2005; the "Accord" calls for the US Embassy to be moved to Jerusalem, for Palestinian terrorists to be disarmed, and for Palestinian refugees to be resettled in "the lands of their Arab kinsmen" (given that Christian Zionists see the West Bank and Gaza as part of Israel, this would mean the expulsion of Palestinian refugees living in those areas, although understandably this point is not spelt out). As with the "Letter of Repentance", the "Accord" was mainly a publicity stunt.

The Battalion of Deborah is particularly militant, and supports the building of the "Third Temple" in Jerusalem - a cause which is also dear to the Israeli far-right (such as the new "Sanhedrin", which recently announced plans to kill a sheep on the Temple Mount). The Israeli branch of "Covenant Alliances" is run by Pastor David Decker (the Post slightly confuses the issue), who is the author of Revival From Zion:

This book uses 50 compelling arguments from the Bible to challenge Christians to take a supportive attitude toward this next major prophetic event. God is NOT finished with Israel! The coming third Temple is especially for the Jewish people. The literal Temple, once rebuilt, will be used to point many to Jesus, the Lamb of God who is the Ultimate "Once and for All" Sacrifice. This book directly tackles the subject of animal sacrifices and shows why reinstituting the full Temple service will be an exciting God-ordained event, not only for Israel, but also for the Church and the whole world.

Decker has led evangelisation work in Israel - an activity which some Israeli MKs now want to ban.

As I noted on my blog a few days ago, prominent Christian Zionist Janet Parshall has broken with the Christian Allies Caucus in protest at this and other anti-evangelism measures.

by Richard Bartholomew on Sun Apr 01, 2007 at 03:02:52 PM EST

With friends like that, who needs enemies?

by marykk on Mon Apr 02, 2007 at 09:11:29 AM EST

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