Archives for February 2014
This coming March, the third Christ at the Checkpoint Conference (CaTC) will take place in Bethlehem. The theme for this year’s conference is taken straight out of the Lord’s Prayer found in Matthew 6:10: “Your Kingdom Come”. By their own declaration, the organizers of CaTC have a mission defined as follows:
The mission of Christ at the Checkpoint is to Challenge Evangelicals To Take Responsibility To Help Resolve the Conflicts in Israel-Palestine By Engaging With the Teaching of Jesus on the Kingdom of God.
They have a noble cause –so it appears– as they claim to be promoting reconciliation. As a matter of fact, reconciliation is an important part of the conference manifesto and appears in the first two of their 12 articles:
As long as they belittle, denigrate and humiliate my people, I can only call them a fraud. All the while I will continue to pray for true reconciliation of Arabs and Jews through the shed blood of Yeshua the Messiah.
There is no doubt in my mind that organizations such as the Anti-Defamation League or the Simon Wiesenthal Center are instrumental in fighting bigotry and xenophobia in general and anti-Semitism in particular. They are very involved in tracking, exposing and fighting all kinds of anti-Semitism worldwide. Yet, I still believe that the best barometer to measure the global level of anti-Semitism remains the nation of Israel.
Biblically, Israel has been in existence since God gave the Land of Canaan to Abraham and his descendants (Genesis 12:1-3, 15:18-21, 17:8, 26:2-5, 28:12-15). There was no condition and the covenant is eternal, especially because only God’s glory went through the split animals to ratify that foundational covenant with Abraham, and we know from His word that God never changes (Hebrews 13:8).
Additionally, 1948 saw the prophetic re-birth of Israel as a modern nation. Ever since its re-birth, Israel has been at war with its neighbors in the Middle East. It is only because of God’s grace and the promise He made to Abraham and his descendants that Israel still exists today. Israel’s destruction is the goal of many but Israel’s survival and future glory is part of God’s decree (Jeremiah 31:35-37).
Simultaneously, anti-Semitism has punctuated Jewish history through the ages since the Jewish people came into existence and Satan realized that God had a special plan for those He calls “the Apple of His eye” (Zechariah 2:8).
The majority of the Jewish people have spread out globally since the destruction of the Jewish Temple in 70 AD. They are known today as the “Diaspora” meaning dispersion. While Jews around the world have been able to preserve their identity through the ages, they have not been so successful in escaping the re-birth of anti-Semitism. As a matter of fact, I believe that we live in an age where the recent New anti-Semitism is merging with classic anti-Semitism giving birth to a new hybrid hatred of the Jews that I call “Eschatological1 anti-Semitism” or the anti-Semitism of the last days.
By this I mean that the already loathsome and pervasive hatred of the Jews that we have witnessed through the centuries has now joined forces with post-modern anti-Semitism and anti-Zionism. The goal being the final blow on God’s chosen people. This is the final chapter in Satan’s book of hatred against the Jews and he has many ghost-writers helping him to write it!
I still have confidence that God will never forsake Israel, yet the process by which Israel will be refined and brought to Him will be very painful and rather decimating (Zechariah 13:9). We also know from the Bible that in the end-days, the whole world will turn against Israel (Zechariah 12:2-3, 14:2-3). It’s a guarantee and that is what I mean by Eschatological anti-Semitism! But I do not want followers of Yeshua to feel like they just have to throw the proverbial towel. After all, if we are on God’s side, who can defeat us?
Eschatological anti-Semitism is clearly evident in France where two weeks ago Paris witnessed a street protest of about 20,000 people that would make both Hitler and Ahmadinejad very proud. In an interesting turn of events, a march that was originally labeled as “Jour de colère contre Hollande” or “Day of anger against Hollande” turned into a march against French Jews where people did the Nazi salute (0:26) and chanted slogans such as:
• “Jews, get out, France is not for you!”
• ” Jew, Jew, Jew, Jew!”
• “Jews and LICRA2 we don’t want you!”
• “Jews get out of France!”
• “Faurisson3 was right, the gas chambers were a hoax!”
• “Jews, you don’t belong in France!”
It was very scary to watch French people walk the streets of Paris and scream their hatred of the Jews. Ratings for Mr. Hollande are at their lowest for reasons that are beyond the scope of this article, but one thing is certain, French Jews are not responsible for Mr. Hollande’s incompetence. But then again, they were not responsible for the Black Plague, the control of world banks, 9/11 or even the death of Messiah. Unfortunately, it never stopped their enemies from stating the opposite and the masses from believing it.
I was born in Paris and even though I now live in the United-States, I left a part of my heart in France. I ache for the Jewish community that happens to be the third largest in the world. But frankly, I am not sure that it will remain the third largest because of a current wave of emigration from France to America, Canada and of course Israel.
More than any other country in the world, Israel understands the plight of the worldwide Jewish community. The country was not in place during World War II (at least from a modern perspective), and millions of Jews perished with nowhere to flee. Today, Israel is very much in place, thriving and here to stay. Israel is the only safe haven for Jews from anywhere on the planet. They understand their role very well in these end-days even though much of Israel is agnostic at best or secular at worst. They can still be players without acknowledging the Master who is behind the scenes.
As a matter of fact, Israel just started a program to draw French Jews out of France to Israel. We have seen a great number of Jews leaving France in the last few years and 26% of the French Jewish community still wants to flee France. Israel now has a program currently named “France First” stating that 3,000 Jews left France in 2013 and that they expect at least another 17,000 to leave in the next 3 years. Time will tell for sure, but Israel chooses to be proactive about the problem of anti-Semitism in France and the rest of the world. Israel understand the gravity of the current situation more that anyone else.
Eschatological anti-Semitism shouldn’t surprise the faithful followers of Yeshua the Messiah but it should compel us to reach out to our Jewish friends and family members as the final chapter of human history is being written. Yes, the context of that final chapter is Israel and the Jewish people and there is nothing we can change about that, except of course making sure that more Jewish people meet their Messiah now, before it is too late!
1 Eschatology is a branch of theology concerned with the study of the final events and the last days of mankind on planet earth.
2 LICRA is the in International League Against Racism and Anti-Semitism.
3 Robert Faurisson is a French Holocaust denier claiming that the Holocaust is a myth and that the gas chamber didn’t exist)