Sunday, July 29, 2007

Evangelicals for and Against a Palestinian State

The New York Times reports on a coalition of 34 evangelical leaders (including Fuller Seminary president, Richard Mouw, Gordon MacDonald, Ron Sider, and Christianity Today editor, David Neff) that supports the creation of a Palestinian state:
On Friday, these leaders sent a letter to President Bush saying that both Israelis and Palestinians have “legitimate rights stretching back for millennia to the lands of Israel/Palestine,” and that they support the creation of a Palestinian state “that includes the vast majority of the West Bank.”
They say that being a friend to Jews and to Israel “does not mean withholding criticism when it is warranted.” The letter adds, “Both Israelis and Palestinians have committed violence and injustice against each other.”
“This group is in no way anti-Israel, and we make it very clear we’re committed to the security of Israel,” said Ronald J. Sider, president of Evangelicals for Social Action, which often takes liberal positions on issues. “But we want a solution that is viable. Obviously there would have to be compromises.”
The article quotes megachurch pastor John Hagee, founder of Christians United for Israel, as claiming that "Bible-believing evangelicals will scoff at that message" and draws attention to how differences in eschatology lead to differing stances on political policy with respect to Israel. Mention is made of a CUFI conference in Washington earlier this month that had an attendance of 4,500. Thanks to Collin Hansen, one of the guest bloggers at Between Two Worlds, for pointing to this video by Max Blumenthal who attended that conference (until he got escorted out by D. C. 's finest) to do some investigative reporting. Interesting viewing to be sure.

UPDATE: I just read Dr. Ben Witherington's thoughtful commentary on the video in which he lists what he considers its top five most chilling elements.

1 comment:

Papa Giorgio said...

Let it be known I am against a Palestinian state.

Good post.