Feb 1, 2010

Israel’s Dear Christian Friends

Jim FletcherBy Jim Fletcher

(I encourage you to visit the following link, an article written by Mark Tooley: http://frontpagemag.com/2010/01/27/the-anti-israel-revelation)

Mark Tooley, one of the most courageous watchdogs around (he’s president of the Institute on Religion and Democracy; if you are a member of a mainline denomination please visit their website), has done a better job than I could articulating the damage being done to Israel by Emergent spokesman Brian McLaren’s recent visit to the region.

“’Emergent Church’ guru Brian McLaren is a key figure on the Evangelical Left who is trying shift Evangelicals, who are America’s most pro-Israel demographic, into a more neutralist stance. Currently, he is leading a delegation through Israel and ‘Palestine’ to broadcast the sins of Israeli oppression against Palestinians by ‘listening, learning, thinking, observing, reflecting.’ His blog is providing daily updates of his discoveries, all of which confirm his previously often declared bias against Israel.

“’I hope you will start questioning what you think you know about the situation here,’ McLaren warned on his blog recently, with the assumption that most readers are deceived by pro-Israel partiality. ‘I’ve been an avid reader on the subject for quite a while, but being here now, I see how many of my most basic assumptions were skewed from a lifetime of half-truths, unfair and imbalanced news, well-planned propaganda, and misinformation.’”
I knew McLaren would bash Israel during his trip. Here is the most stunning sentence in Tooley’s article:
“Amazingly, he has discovered a ‘lack of hatred’ and a thirst for ‘non-violent’ action among Palestinians, despite all the abuse from their Israeli ‘victimizers,’ and the mischaracterizations from the purportedly pro-Israel U.S. media.”
The idea that the Palestinians have a lack of hatred for Israel/Jews and a thirst for non-violent action is either from an infantile, naïve mind, or it is purposely disingenuous. There are no other options.

Israel has fought for its very life on a daily basis for 61 years. For McLaren to claim otherwise is grotesque, and proves he has no regard for the Jewish state. He’s not stupid. He knows very well that he is spouting Arab propaganda.

And please note this: pro Israel Christians are constantly accused of visiting the region and engaging only with Zionists. Does anyone seriously believe that McLaren and his delegation actually look for balance? Are they going to sit down with Uzi Landau or have lunch with a group of IDF soldiers?

Of course not.

The goal was to go over and photograph Israel’s security fence and then come back home to describe it as an apartheid wall.

The goal was to go over and talk with Palestinians with ties to terrorism and then come back and present them as peaceniks.

The goal was to go over and drive past Jewish homes and then come back and present them as squatters-on-Arab-lands.

McLaren is a key member of a unique community. He moves through a community of folks who do not view modern Israel as a fulfillment of predictive prophecy. This thought ties together people from different backgrounds: lefties like McLaren (although he cleverly aligns himself with evangelicals), “right-wingers” like Pat Buchanan, and then more mainstream Christians who come from, say, a Reformed background.

These different groups would not normally make common cause about anything, but Israel-bashing is too good to pass up.

McLaren’s dispatches from Israel (which he longs to see called “Palestine”) are now circulated among students in America, liberal Christians, and seminary professors.

Let me be clear: these efforts are largely going to be successful. That can be a depressing thought, but it is realistic. What we must do, as Christian Zionists, is determine to push through and reach those who can be reached. It is a worthy and attainable goal.

It would have been wonderful if McLaren could have spent time with Benjamin Netanyahu and perhaps his father, Prof. Benzion Netanyahu, who would have given him a primer on Zionism. This great Israeli family, courageous and resourceful in defending the Land of Israel, are the antithesis of McLaren, whose smarmy leftwing worldview endangers people, because he doesn’t confront real threats.

McLaren and his friends will never seriously internalize the threat from the jihadists. For them, radical Islam doesn’t exist.

It’s been my experience that there are plenty of Israelis who understand who their real friends are, and that community is comprised mostly of Christian Zionists.

Not diabolical change agents like Brian McLaren.

Related Links

Israel is Getting McLarened - Bible Prophecy Today (Jim Fletcher)
It's the End of the World as We Know It (and I Feel Fine): How to stop worrying and learn to love these End Times - Jim Fletcher (Book)
The evangelical left's anti-Israel slant - OneNewsNow
Evangelical Left Leader on Anti-Israel Pilgrimage - Christian News Wire
How to Know When the Emerging Church Shows Signs of Emerging in Your Church - Understand The Times (Roger Oakland)