21 May 2011



There has been much talk in the media and among the common person about the unending conflict in Palestine. Self-righteous and religion laced rhetoric has exploded in the wake of last week's speech on the topic by President Obama. If you don't know the details, you can read about it via NPR: http://www.npr.org/2011/05/20/136491809/obamas-ideas-on-israel-face-tough-reception .

The strain of Christianity I grew up in largely saw Israel as always good and the Palestinians, led by Yassir Arafat, as always bad and not on the side of God. As I grew up I started to question this more and more. I don't assume  that stance anymore nor do I assume a stereotypical  "liberal" view of the opposite. Instead I view it politically through the lens of ethics and religiously through arc of the Biblical narrative and the teachings of Jesus and together I end up with something messy and incredibly un-simple. This is how life is and how we must look at any conflict whether it involves our best friend or whom we perceive as our enemy.

Here are some of my brief thoughts, culled from internet discussions, on the Israel/Palestine conflict in how it relates to Christianity in its varied forms.

"The Israelites aren't the original inhibitors of that land nor is anyone that is alive today. 

Notice a major motif of the Biblical narrative is that Israel tries very hard to follow God's way but fails and so over and over again they are removed from the land and/or lorded over by the powerful empire of the time. A specific way that Israel, according to Isaiah and Jeremiah, brings this upon themselves is in how Israel treats the foreigner (or 'the other') living in their own land. Interesting isn't it? And this continues today. I honestly don't think Israel will be at peace until this changes.... that is if you want to take the Biblical narrative as literal and apply it today.

[In the Old Testament of the Bible]... "God's covenant with Israel is always conditional in the Biblical texts. If they don't hold up their end of the bargain God doesn't either. 

Also of note is that while Christians today seem to be rather passionate about Israel taking all of Palestine back even if by force, Jesus, the founder of Christianity, over and over forbade his followers, some of which were part of the violent Zealot freedom fighters, from using violence to reclaim Israel from Rome. As followers of Jesus I find
it curious that many people ... feel they are more entitled than Jesus or His disciples to break with Jesus' Way on this."

1 comment:

Mithun C M said...

A lot of signs are given in the "Revelation"- Ends of time. This have to be occurred. The Jews have to reunite together which helps them to acquire the all holy land to rebuild their Solomon's Temple. Where the Evil (666 the beast) stay and control the world for a span of some years (narration as may be 7 Years). I found my beliefs in bible are getting more and more stronger because its predictions are getting correct, sayings are truths 101% and every clause we come across is perfect and imposingly matching. After 2060!

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