Delusion at the Checkpoint :: by Howard Green

Young people are kidnapped, rockets are fired into villages, and thugs murder civilians. This violence seems like the actions of a North Korean dictatorship, a rogue Iranian regime, or a brutal militant warlord in Africa. These are the terrorist actions of Palestinians who are empowered by Hamas to carry out violence against Israelis and other innocent bystanders. The world should be outraged and good people should take a stand and call out this sort of evil. Instead, the “peace in our time” crowd scold Israel for defending its citizens and pursuing the evil surrounding them. The folks scolding Israel suffer from:  Delusion at the checkpoint.

It’s not the point of this article to go into detail about the thousands of acts of violence perpetrated against Israeli civilians because volumes could be written about that subject alone. The intent here is to highlight the self-delusion and foolishness of those who would blame Israel for the discord that is so prevalent in the region.

The hypocrisy and shortsighted political wrangling of the EU, UN, and US State Department are nothing new. Israel is attacked again and again by extremists. Israel does what any responsible nation does and defends its citizens. Checkpoints ensure terrorists can’t slip into Israel. Israel closely guards its borders with the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. The Israeli Defense Forces may choose to retaliate in response to attacks launched from inside Palestinian territory. Many of the world’s power brokers and politicians decry self-defense measures taken by Israel as unilateral and disproportionate. Yet these very same nations would respond in kind to any entity who launched repeated attacks on its citizens and territory. As hypocritical as these reprimands of Israel by other nations are, they are predictable because they are fueled by self serving agendas.

What I find very disturbing is a trend that has infiltrated the church. This trend started in mainline denominations and has quickly spread to an increasing number of evangelical circles. What is this disturbing trend? It is a movement that sides with Hamas, radical Palestinian groups, and the “peace in our time” crowd while demonizing Israel for defending itself.

Christ at the Checkpoint is an annual conference that is attended by many including well know evangelical leaders. Here is the Christ at the Checkpoint ( CATC) 2014 mission: 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.

CATC Is nothing short of a concerted attack on Israel by the ill-informed at best and those with ill-intent toward Israel at the worst. In every conflict there are always a few who stray outside the rules of engagement and they should certainly be held accountable. But what we have in the ongoing crisis is repeated acts of violence directed at Israeli citizens that’s being orchestrated, planned, and funded from inside the areas controlled and dare I say…. ‘governed’ by Hamas and the Palestinian Authority.

Israel must defend itself from terrorism. The checkpoints, walls, and routine searches are to ensure the safety of its citizens and sovereignty of its land. If the shoe were on the other foot and the Israelis were the aggressors launching terrorist attacks against her Arab neighbors, perhaps the CATC crowd would be more understanding.

Along the lines of understanding, we have the recent decision by the Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA) to divest from companies doing business with Israel. The PCUSA and many others see Israel as the problem in the region, while they choose to ignore the thousands of acts of violence committed by Palestinians. These “peace in our time” types push for a Palestinian state which at the end of the day, will most certainly be controlled by Hamas.

How could a Christian who regularly studies Scripture be so blind as to ignore the miracle that is the modern State of Israel? Against all odds and at a great cost, Israel was reborn in May 1948. It is because of this miracle in the middle east, bible prophecy again proved relevant, true, and accurate. The prophet Isaiah says the following about the rebirth of Israel:

Isaiah 66:8: “Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things? Shall a land be born in one day? Shall a nation be brought forth in one moment? For as soon as Zion was in labor she brought forth her children.”

The prophet Ezekiel saw this modern day miracle, Ezekiel 37:5: “Thus says the Lord GOD to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the LORD.”

As Christians we are to show love to all people including Jews and Arabs. But peddling and using the name of Jesus to promote a political cause is wrong. Instead of divesting, Christians should be investing. Investing with our prayers of peace for this region. Christians should drop the political grandstanding and exchange it for standing for the gospel, not a special interest political movement. Jesus was compassionate, loving, and cared for all people. But we don’t find Jesus, Paul, or John taking on the political establishment, engaging the policy makers, and attending conferences to promote social justice. Believers would be well-informed and make wise decisions not to be involved with anti-Israel, anti-biblical, and pro-terrorist groups.

It’s high time to shed the rose colored glasses and take a look at the facts: Anyone with a realistic view of what the real world is like knows what would happen if Israel dismantled its security wall and pursued peace at all costs. Hamas, Hezbollah, and every radical Palestinian would turn on Israel. The fact is, many people in the West Bank and Gaza Strip say they want peace but the evidence and history clearly demonstrate, it’s a peace without Israel and Jews. It’s time for people to read what the Lord says about Israel in his word and quit taking the ill informed lopsided advice of the liberal Christian thought police.

Let’s pray for the peace of Jerusalem. Let’s support Israel and her right to exist peacefully. Let’s support Israel’s right to defend herself from radical extremists, both foreign and domestic, who are drunk with the purpose of destroying her. Let’s be wise and not punish the only country in the region that esteems life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness as important as  the U.S. does.

Israel is back in her ancient homeland because of God’s divine providence. An undivided Jerusalem is Israel’s capital and right. Any nation seeking to divide the land is going to be judged by the Lord. Any believer who doesn’t see the importance of supporting Israel is simply blind to what’s going on in the world today and what God’s Word esteems as sovereign land.

Joel 3:2: “For behold, in those days and at that time, when I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem, I will gather all the nations and bring them down to the Valley of Jehoshaphat. And I will enter into judgment with them there, on behalf of my people and my heritage Israel, because they have scattered them among the nations and have divided up my land, and have cast lots for my people, and have traded a boy for a prostitute, and have sold a girl for wine and have drunk it.”

All for Him,