Will the world ever learn? Will the politicians ever learn? Will the people ever learn? After 2,000 years of documented history, after being persecuted and pummeled, dispersed and distressed, harassed and harangued, massacred and mutilated, Israel exists, ALIVE, and VIBRANT, a virtual powerhouse in the Middle East and a bastion of democracy where democracy should NOT survive.
This tiny nation, an example of fortitude and strength, dogged determination and grit, victorious in defense and a global leader in business and economics, a people to be admired and respected, emulated and praised for their sagacity and ingenuity, still stands virtually alone with most of the world either against her or indifferent to her plight.
Why, you ask? Why should a people that have produced 187 Nobel Laureates (from a tiny global population of about 14 million), whose medical and technological inventions and achievements have benefited almost every person on the planet, in one form or another, why should they be constantly ostracized and emasculated?
As an evangelical Christian, my simple answer will not satisfy the secular world or the casual observer, but I challenge them to give a better response with some level of proof for their arguments. You see, my response lies in the God of Israel, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob who has covenantly and contractually guaranteed to bless the entire world through them: “In thee shall all the families of the world be blessed” (Genesis 12:3).
Numerous other Scriptures attest to the fact that Israel is God’s chosen land, Jerusalem is God’s chosen city and the Jews are God’s chosen people. My response is simply that the world is anti-God, and more precisely, anti- the -God of Israel. It is easy to understand that a world full of “gods” of every kind that offer many different paths to “eternal bliss” would conflict with a God that claims only one way to heaven. But one would not so easily comprehend that the offspring of that God─the Christian church that has irrevocable and indisputable Hebraic roots, would be culpable in the demonization of the “root” which they are grafted into.
“Replacement Theology” is that evil, contrived doctrine that has infected Christendom for centuries by claiming that because the Jews rejected “their” Christ, all the Abrahamic promises were taken from them and given to the Christian “church” but the Jews retained all the curses.
Thankfully, there is an ever larger and growing evangelical community that has and is dispelling this horrible lie, and herein lies one of, and I believe, the most important reasons WHY Christians should support the “apple of God’s eye,” His “firstborn.”
Christians of every stripe and denomination should seriously study the Scriptures relating to the “Jewishness” of their Christ, His apostles and the entirety of the early church. They should pray and seek God’s wisdom in this regard, and then challenge the teachings of their ministers and pastors where they differ from Scripture.
With Israel under the threat of annihilation from another modern day Haman in Iran, with the Islamic world raising its ugly head of hatred and threatening a global Caliphate once again, it has never been more critical for the Christian world to come together in unity to support Israel as commanded by God in Romans 15.2:
“For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their (Jews) spiritual things, their DUTY is also to minister to them in carnal (material) things.”
I would say that obedience to the Lord’s command is a pretty good reason “why” Christians should pray for and support His chosen people.
As well, in Deuteronomy Chapter 7 and verse 6, God states:
“For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God; the Lord thy God hath chosen thee to be a special people unto Himself, above ALL people that are upon the face of the earth”.
Now this is a Scripture that sticks in the craw of most religions and “religious” people, but if the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob places that much importance on His people Israel. I believe that we, as Christians, would be wise to do the same.
Once one has come into agreement with the above, by prayer and study of the Word, how does one begin, where does one start to fulfill God’s commandment to “minister” to His chosen people? What practical things can any individual Christian do for the people and the nation of Israel that would please Almighty Jehovah? The first “how” that I would recommend, and most obvious, is prayer. Prayer “moves the hand of God” and should always be a Christian’s first line of attack in any situation.
Prayer for Israel’s safety, and God’s continuous Hand of protection upon the land and its people. As most Jews today are secular or agnostic, prayer for them to return to their Judaic roots, their own God Jehovah and their salvation would be appropriate. Prayer that God would continue to defend them from their enemies, as He has done for centuries (when they were living in obedience to His commands), would be another positive avenue. The best thing is to seek out God’s advice and listen for that still small voice that will guide you in how best to pray for our Jewish brothers and sisters.
The second “how” is to study and learn the history of the Jewish Nation, including the Holocaust up to present day. They have a history that is unique in the annals of nations, and have paid a horrific price down through the ages for being the “chosen people” and for their perceived wrongdoings, some rightly but most wrongly. For the Christian, it should go without saying that we owe our faith and our salvation to the Jewish lineage of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and to the dedication of the Jew for the preservation of the Scriptures.
Against all odds and throughout the most horrendous of trials and sufferings, the nation of Israel, as a people, have recorded and maintained the Scriptures’ accuracy and content as originally written, and this attested to by the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls as one of many incontrovertible proofs. Learning about the Hebraic roots of my Christian faith has been one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences of my 71 years and I highly recommend it for all who wish a deeper understanding of their Christian faith and a closer walk with their Lord.
Far too many Christians are unaware or uniformed that the Jesus they follow was a Torah believing, Feast observing Jewish Rabbi who taught in the Synagogues, and, they also miss out on the richness and depth of the Word of God in its original language, as well as innumerable blessings that God promises for those who bless His people.
The next “how” is assisting the Jewish people in a practical, meaningful ways on a regular or ongoing basis. There are numerous ministries and organizations that work with the Jewish people in providing food, clothing, and medicines for the poor in the Holy Land. And the number of poor in Israel grows almost daily. The cost of protecting herself and her people from terrorists, suicide bombers and enemies on her borders exacts an unbelievable financial toll on the government of Israel and has cut deeply into the social services that she is able to provide.
A brief Google search will bring up many of these wonderful groups and the people who have stood-up and stand in the gap to fill in for these desperate needs. And there are others, like the ministry that I represent, Ezra Canada. As the Executive Director of Ezra Canada, we partner with Ezra International in 14 different countries in the Aliyah (10 are former USSR countries), assisting Jewish people to return to their God-given land of Israel, (app. 70,000 to date), and to escape the poverty and persecution that they still face on a daily basis. (Anti-Semitism today exceeds that of 1939 Germany, and is rising by the minute.) God’s chosen people have many, many physical and material needs and there are numerous ways to help, if one so desires.
Another way, and this is in addition to the other methods described above (not in place of), is to befriend a Jewish person or family. In simple, honest, loving Christian style, become a friend to a Jew and get to know them. Become a true friend and do what a true friend would do…love and respect them. Talk, laugh, help and enjoy getting to know them. Try to avoid “religious” talk. Remember, they had God for 4,000 years before we were “invited” to join “their” family. True Christian love is described as follows:
“Love is very patient and kind, never jealous or envious, never boastful or proud, never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way. It is not irritable or touchy. It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do wrong. It is never glad about injustice, but rejoices whenever truth wins out. If you love someone you will be loyal to him no matter what the cost. You will always believe in him, always expect the best of him, and always stand your ground in defending him” (1 Corinthians 13: 4-7, Living Bible) [Author Saul of Tarsus, a “Jew among Jews.”]
If one takes this Christian approach, I know that they will build strong, enriching relationships with many of their Jewish neighbors or acquaintances, in their neighborhoods or workplaces, and the resulting friendships will become an example for many others to emulate.
Rev. Roy Trepanier,