Tuesday, August 21, 2007

An Evangelical letter to Bush about Israeli-Palestinian peace

Michael L. Westmoreland-White draws attention to a letter sent to President Bush by certain U.S. Evangelical Christian leaders. It endorses a two-state solution for Israeli-Palestinian peace and urges, as Michael summarises, 'more vigorous U.S. engagement in the peace process'. Michael adds that the first signers 'were, of course, denounced by Hagee and the "Christian Zionists"'. Indeed, here one can read Hagee's response in which he states: 'The authors of this letter do not represent the views of the vast majority of Bible-believing mainstream evangelicals in America'.

Perhaps accurate. No offence at anybody intended, but I'm personally glad that the representative view of the majority of mainstream American evangelicals is not my litmus test for truth. I have much to learn about the whole Zionism issue, but I have stuck my neck out on this one on my blog before, and I have seen nothing yet to change my views. Christian Zionism is highly problematic (Michael thinks it is heretical, but I'm not sure I would go that far)

(Hagee is the chap who, at the CUFI's "Washington-Israel Summit" on July 16 2007, called for a pre-emptive military strike against Iran. I couldn't believe my ears when I heard him say that. Utterly shocking)


At 8/22/2007 1:28 AM, Anonymous Livingsword said...


The crux of the issue is that there are many “evangelicals” that hate their enemy. They are more interested in what they see as working towards the end times. They think they need the current situation to continue for the next stage to occur. Of course not all evangelicals would agree with this way of doing things. It is situations like this that have caused me to never to call myself an evangelical on my blogs. It seems to be a designation that is currently going under extreme splintering, and can be perceived in so many easy that it no longer has meaning.

Of course Iran is a threat to Israel, and even the Palestinians can be seen in this light, but we must love our enemies!

I have started a mini-series on politics and religion on my blog Life on the Blade, I would love to have you make some comments, I have a many people of different beliefs that are guests, and I think your perspective would be interesting.

At 8/22/2007 3:12 AM, Anonymous Alex said...

I wonder if anybody has read "One Country" by Ali Abunimah? The two-state solution seems to me like it won't work too well because the land the Palestinians stand to get is divided by Israeli settlements at various points.

At 8/22/2007 4:27 AM, Anonymous Danny Zacharias said...

The issue of heresy is a bit of a tricky one. It is difficult to point at Christian Zionism and say it is heresy, BUT it is solidly built upon dispensationalism which IS heresy because it compromises the universal nature of salvation by Christ alone. The majority of zionists think Jews are operating under the old covenant. This means they believe there is a separate path beyond Christ. That is the heresy, and it is the bedrock upon which zionism is built. Unfortunately, many zionists never take a moment to look at what they are standing on.

At 8/22/2007 4:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As an American, can I just say...I'm truly embarrassed by the Hagee's and most of the "evangelicals" living and have a platform to speak to the world. I'm sure they are there because the Lord is using them for His purpose (not the purpose they think they are about)and one day they will see how far they've gone from God's word.

At 8/22/2007 5:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Chris, as someone who has lived in Israel for an extended period of time, let me tell you that the injustice there is worse than you can imagine, and it is embarrassing to say that it would have been impossible without the support of American evangelicals.

Christian Zionism may not be heresy, but it is completely indefensible on any grounds, exegetical, social, common-sensical :-), and so on...

Lassen Sie es sich gut gehen.

At 8/22/2007 11:43 PM, Anonymous Chris Tilling said...

Hi Livingsword, thanks for your comment. I'll have a look at your series.

Hi Alex, I haven't read that book, no. Where you convinced by the arguments?

That is a good point, Danny. Most evangelical CZs I know would want to affirm the necessity of faith in Christ for salvation for all, but perhaps the situation is different here?

Thanks for your comments, anons

At 8/30/2007 11:43 AM, Anonymous James said...

Anonymous writes: "Christian Zionism may not be heresy, but it is completely indefensible on any grounds, exegetical, social, common-sensical :-), and so on..."

IS he really saying that he sees no justification whatsoever for any Christian support whatsoever for the Jewish people having any state of their own (however small) in their ancestral homeland? What would he prefer - another area of the world free of six million Jews?

I am a British Messianic Jew, I have family and friends in Israel (including other Messianic Jews, of whom there are now more in Israel than at any time since Acts) and frankly find it sickening that a "Christian" can take such an approach.

Like other readers of this blog I dislike the Hagees of this world and have serious problems with their theology. However, evangelicals need to be careful not to go to the other extreme and join in with the secularists, Islamists and neo-Nazis who call for the eradication of the world's one Jewish state.

Alex, read "The Case for Israel" and "The Case for Peace" by Alan Dershowitz. The one-state solution is a non-starter, it would mean the Jewish inhabitants being swamped by a largely hostile Arab majority, paving the way for a second Holocaust. Historically, Jews have suffered much under Arab rule and there is little indication that life in a majority-Arab Palestinian state would be any different. Settlements are NOT a barrier to peace, Israel has in the past dismantled settlements both in the Sinai and in Gaza in an effort to seek peace.

Chris - it would be nice to see you condemning unambiguously Ahmadinejad's denial of the first Holocaust and (in his stated desire to wipe Israel off the map) threat to perpetrate a second.

Finally - I attempt to provide a non-dispensationalist, moderate, sensible, pro-Israel AND pro-Palestinian stance on my own blog, Large Blue Footballs, comments welcome.

Rant over.


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