web analytics
December 20, 2014 / 28 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

More On The Christian Left’s Problem With Israel


(Editor’s Note: In an op-ed article in the April 25 issue of The Jewish Press, Dr. Tilford addressed the anti-Israel sentiment and activism so rife in America’s liberal Protestant churches. In this follow-up piece, he looks at some of the specifics driving that animus.)

Most Christians, including many (if not a majority of) members of the mainline Protestant denominations, support Israel. Nevertheless, the Christian Left persists with its sometimes vehemently anti-Israeli and unabashedly pro-Palestinian sentiments. Why?

Bluntly put, Israel stands for things the Christian Left cannot abide: human values based on biblically grounded eternal truths; a clear understanding of the evil nature of the enemies arrayed against Israel; military power along with the inclination and will to use it, despite criticism from much of the international community; and a vibrant economy in a region where, Arab oil sheiks notwithstanding, most people are mired in poverty.

The graybeards among the current crop of Christian leftists were born of frustration with the materialism extant in the prosperity of the 1950’s and 1960’s, were nurtured on the idealism of the Civil Rights movement, blossomed during the Vietnam era anti-war movement, and indulged themselves with the neo-egalitarian hedonism of the counterculture.

As the multicultural mantras of race, gender, class, sexual orientation, and the rhetoric of victimization, took hold during the 1970’s and 1980’s, Israel emerged as a political, economic, and military powerhouse to represent all that the religious Left abhors.

Israel’s values, like those of conservative Christians, derive from belief in a sovereign creator and ruler of the universe, a definitive truth, and the understanding that good and evil are objectively assessable. Definitive truth, righteousness, and sinfulness are concepts alien to a Christian Left that denies the existence of evil (except as it applies to political and religious conservatives, “big oil,” and anyone who questions the left’s assumptions).

An objective concept of good and evil implies judging much of what the Christian Left holds precious: subjectively-derived moral standards, hedonistic self-centeredness, and situational morality and ethics.

The Christian Left long ago abandoned definitive truth and distinctions between biblically derived concepts of right and wrong in exchange for a pseudo-gospel based on advocating “justice” in matters attendant to gay rights and unrestricted abortion – neither of which can be biblically supported.

Israel, a veritable garden of democracy in a wasteland of corrupt, dictatorial or oligarchic theocratic Islamic regimes, clearly understands the evil compelling Islamic fanatics to don suicide vests and blow themselves up amid innocents. Christian leftists by contrast believe all humans are essentially good. Evil, if it even exits, results from environmental or economic disadvantage. Israelis harbor no such illusions.

Further, Israel does something Christian leftists find incomprehensible: it uses military power to defend itself. Not only does Israel use its superbly trained and technologically advanced military in precision attacks on terrorists, both in preemption and retaliation, it does so with little regard for the outcries rising from some portions of the world community.

Israel simply doesn’t pay much attention to the howls of outrage emanating from Christian leftists – something that further infuriates the Christian Left. Additionally, leftists – secular as well as Christian – generally revel in appeasement, compromise, and international instruments of arbitration such as the United Nations, the World Court, and the World Council of Churches. Pronouncements and condemnations from those institutions do not seem to bother Israelis overly much.

Israel, much to the chagrin of the Christian Left, is a pluralistic country providing equal rights under the law for all its citizens, including Arab Christians, Arab Muslims, Israeli Christians and Druze along with Israeli Jews. What the Christian Left ignores is that anyone living in Israel, regardless of religion, is better off than Christians living in any Muslim country one might care to name.

Finally, Israel is an economic success story. Marxist orthodoxy, which undergirds the “social justice” gospel espoused by Christian leftists, maintains that prosperity results from exploitation. If Israel, despite its early socialist legacy and heavy defense burdens, is prosperous, that prosperity must derive from exploiting Palestinians “driven” off their land and denied the right to return. Oppression and victimization are concepts weighting heavily upon the hearts of most Christian leftists.

Israel, a beacon of democratic promise amid a wasteland of oppression, is a nation established on ancient religious values. As such, Israel is everything the loquacious liberals on the Christian Left cannot abide.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “More On The Christian Left’s Problem With Israel”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Posted to Twitter in Ferguson, MO by St. Louis County Police: "Bricks thrown at police, 2 police cars burned, gun seized by police. Tonight was disappointing."  Their motto is, "To protect and serve."
Prosecutor in Ferguson Case: ‘Witnesses Lied Under Oath’
Latest Indepth Stories
The annual  Chabad menorah lighting in Sydney has been called off this year because of the murders in the Lindt cafe.

The decision to not publicly light the Menorah in Sydney, epitomizes the eternal dilemma of Judaism and Jews in the Diaspora.

Greiff-112814-Men

Am Yisrael is one family, filled with excruciating pain&sorrow for losing the 4 kedoshim of Har Nof

Two dreidels from the author’s extensive collection.

What is its message of the dreidel?” The complexity and hidden nature of history and miracles.

Keeping-Jerusalem

Police play down Arab terrorism as mere “violence” until the truth can no longer be hidden.

The 7 branches of the menorah represent the 7 pillars of secular wisdom, knowledge, and science.

Obama obtained NO verifiable commitments from Cuba it would desist from acts prejudicial to the US

No one would deny that the program subjected detainees to less than pleasant treatment, but the salient point is, for what purpose?

For the past six years President Obama has consistently deplored all Palestinian efforts to end-run negotiations in search of a UN-imposed agreement on Israel.

It’s not an admiration. It is simply a kind of journalist fascination. It stands out, it’s different from more traditional Orthodoxy.

For Am Yisrael, the sun’s movements are subservient to the purpose of our existence.

Israelis now know Arab terrorism isn’t caused by Israeli occupation but by ending Israeli occupation

Anti-Semitism is a social toxin that destroys the things that people most cherish and enjoy.

Amb. Cooper highlighted the impact of the Chanukah/Maccabee spirit on America’s Founding Fathers

Zealousness has its place and time in Judaism; Thank G-d for heroic actions of the Maccabees!

More Articles from Dr. Earl H. Tilford
Tilford-021712

Read the first five books of the Bible and the Book of Joshua. In them, God clearly specified what was expected of Israel: obedience, righteousness and faith being the gist of it. God blessed Israel when it obeyed, and when Israel faltered, God unleashed abundant wrath.

As Israel celebrated its 60th anniversary last month, there were the usual voices raised accusing Israel of victimizing the Palestinian Arabs and “running them out” of the Jewish state.

Most Christians, including many (if not a majority of) members of the mainline Protestant denominations, support Israel. Nevertheless, the Christian Left persists with its sometimes vehemently anti-Israeli and unabashedly pro-Palestinian sentiments. Why?

For a generation after World War II, particularly given revelations of the Holocaust, most American Protestant denominations embraced a more tolerant attitude toward Jews. Since the 1980’s, however, there has been a marked shift, evident in the anti-Israel positions adopted by more liberal denominations like the United Methodist Church (UMC); the Evangelical Presbyterian Church in America (ELCA); the Episcopal Church in the United States of America (ECUSA); and the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. (PCUSA).

The American left clings to the myth that the antiwar movement ended the U.S. war in Vietnam. In fact, the antiwar movement failed to prompt any substantive changes in U.S. war policy.

According to recent intelligence reports, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) killed 40 Hamas terrorists in Gaza last month without inflicting a single civilian casualty. In fact, over the past five years, collateral damage and civilian casualties caused by Israeli military actions have decreased dramatically. Meanwhile, Hamas continues to fire Kassam rockets indiscriminately at the working-class town of Sderot and into the suburban areas of the nearby seaside city of Ashkelon.

Recently, after I’d given back examinations in one of my classes, one student who received a failing grade laughed, showed the exam to students on each side, and laughed again.

Former Alabama football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant said, “I hate to lose worse than anyone … but if you lose with humility you can come back” a winner.

Back in the early 1970’s I served as an Air Force intelligence officer at Udorn Air Base in Thailand, home of the 432nd Tactical Fighter Reconnaissance Wing. Most of the bombing in 1970 and 1971 focused on Laos, especially the Ho Chi Minh Trail logistical network down which Hanoi funneled troops and supplies onto South Vietnam’s battlefields. Occasionally, the 432nd’s F-4 Phantoms would “go North,” striking targets inside North Vietnam.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/more-on-the-christian-lefts-problem-with-israel/2008/04/09/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: