By Shira Sorko-Ram, Maoz—
There is a minority of Palestinian Christians who love Israel and believe what the Bible says about God’s purposes for His chosen people.
These Christians risk their lives when they share this truth with the other 98% of Palestinians who are Muslims. Their belief that the Word of God foretold the rebirth of the State of Israel cannot be publicly preached under the Islamic Palestinian regime. A Muslim convert to Christianity is an anathema to the Palestinian Authority and completely unacceptable to the Islamic Palestinian population. Public evangelism among Muslims is prohibited.
Now, an entire movement among Palestinian Christians, promoted at Christ at the Checkpoint Conferences in Bethlehem, has risen up to join hands with Islam for the purpose of delegitimizing, isolating and destroying Israel with an enhanced version of Replacement Theology. It is the quintessential doctrine bred from anti-Semitism.
But now these Palestinians have gone much farther. They have created what is called Palestinian Liberation Theology. According to them, Jesus was not a Jew. He was a Palestinian. Israel has no historical or theological right to exist. Rather, according to the rewritten scriptures, the Palestinians are the chosen people.
This issue is of utmost importance to evangelical Christians – especially in America, but also in Europe – for Western Evangelicals are the bull’s-eye of the purveyors of this doctrine. Together with the Islamic Palestinian Authority, these Christian Palestinians have as their mission to bring the pro-Israel evangelical public into their Liberation Theology fold.
Every two years, the leaders of Bethlehem Bible School host at CATC like-minded scholars, priests and religious leaders who ferociously attack the Jewish State for existing and for oppressing innocent Palestinian victims. They don’t mention Islamic terror against Israel. They invite Palestinian Islamic authorities to their conferences who “verify” the “brutality” of the Israeli state against the “non-violent” innocent resistance. And many well-known Evangelicals are falling for their deceit, distortions and dishonesty.
Caroline Glick of the Jerusalem Post explains the importance of the Evangelicals to Israel:
Today, Evangelical communities in the US number anywhere between 60 – 150 million people, depending on who is counting. They form the backbone of American support for the Jewish state. It is the support of the Evangelical community, rather than the Jewish community in the US that ensures that come hell or high water, no matter how Israel is demonized in the media and in academia, the majority of Americans continue to support Israel. (http://www.jpost.com)
But times are changing. Many Christians aren’t aware there is a ferocious battle going on for the soul of the Evangelical Church which loves Israel. This year, Christ at the Checkpoint unrelentingly attacked not only Israel, but Christian Zionists – those who love and support Israel – both spiritually and physically.
Christian Zionist journalist, Brian Schrauger, notes that in North America,
the millions of Christians who support Israel seem unaware of significant erosion within. Their children, evangelical millennials in their 20s, are tottering toward an anti-Israel religious world view. He warns:
Arguably and since it began in 2010, the entire Christ at the Checkpoint movement aims to be the lever that tips, or converts, those millennials into religious ambivalence, if not hostility, toward the Jewish state and Jews everywhere. (http://www.jpost.com)
In all fairness to Arab Christians in the West Bank, I cannot imagine the pressure these Palestinian Christians endure living under an Islamic dictatorship. If they were to publicly speak out as to what the Bible says about the land and people of Israel, the PA would make their lives intolerable. Over the last three decades, since the PA has ruled these areas, nearly all Arab Christians who are Catholic, Greek Orthodox or Protestant have left the Palestinian territories for other countries.
The Palestinian Authority, along with their Islamic imams, does what comes naturally for Islamics. They inundate their people with a constant onslaught of Jew-hatred TV, school books and the glorification of Palestinian terrorists – with many millions of dollars of Western support going into the pockets of terrorists in and out of jail, and their families. When we then consider that Palestinian Christians of all stripes have been raised on Replacement Theology – they hardly stand a chance to be able to read the Bible without dark-clouded glasses that pronounce evil, good and good, evil.
I have lived in Israel since 1967 – which includes the time that Yasser Arafat began to create a Palestinian people group which did not exist before. I also well know that Islamic leaders of surrounding Arab nations helped create and sustain this new people as their tool to destroy Israel.
In my opinion, here is the crux of the Palestinians’ great national tragedy. As long as Arab children are educated from birth that they have “lived in the Holy Land for centuries” and “Israel had stolen their land,” this created people group will be a continuous weapon against the existence of Israel – victims of Islamic theology and hatred of the Jew. The Jewish nation will continue to exist, but the Palestinian people will live in chaos, poverty and hatred – with murderers of Jews as their national Palestinian heroes.
Except for Jordan, every other Islamic country has refused Palestinians the right to citizenship in their Arab countries – even though those who now call themselves Palestinians speak the same language, eat the same food, have the same basic culture and the same religion.
Schrauger warns that a meaningful relationship with Palestinians, Jews and Christians must be in the context of a fierce commitment to objective truth. Relationships must not be allowed to devolve into relativism in which we speak of “your truth” and “my truth.”
He points out that when CATC claims their purpose is to “confront religious extremism,” they do not mean Islamic terrorism – they mean those who believe Israel has a right to exist as a Jewish nation.
Israel’s Front Page Magazine gave this disturbing analysis: “Among the enemies of Israel – Islam, European Union, the UN, anti-Israel political forces and Palestinian terrorism – Christ at the Checkpoint Conference will join in the chorus of those who work to destroy Israel with the power of their words.”