Does the Church still have issues with the Jews?
Why has anti-Semitism persisted even to today?
Anti-Semitism is alive and well and thriving in a Church that has not heeded the errors of history. Martin Luther may have been the guiding light of the Reformation, but his anti-Semitism gave the green light for 20th Century German Lutherans to endorse the demonic views of Adolf Hitler, who even made a mention of him in Mein Kampf.
Now let’s ask some more questions. These are questions that we must try to answer ourselves, especially in the light of all we have discussed so far.
- Do you believe the Jewish People are eternally cursed as a result of their rejection of Jesus?
- Do you believe they have forfeited their right to be the ‘chosen people’?
- Do you believe that Christians have supplanted the Jewish People as the only ‘People of God’?
If you still truthfully believe in this final statement, ask yourself one fresh question:
- If God can reject his Old Testament people for their sins, why would a God of justice not reject his New Testament people (i.e. you and me) for committing the very same sins and more (any reading of Church history will bear testament to this)?
Now what I am not saying is that Jewish people as individuals have automatic entry to the blessings of eternal life. A Jew does not have personal salvation just because he was born a Jew. There is only one way to salvation, for Jew and Gentile, and that is through Jesus Christ. This book is not about individual Jews, it is about Jews as a nation, as a people, particularly in relation to those living in the Land of Israel.
‘This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus’ (Ephesians 3:6).
Returning to the article in The Spectator by Melanie Phillips, she received a lot of flak from Christians as a result of what she wrote. She subsequently wrote, on a website, ‘Many mainstream Christians went into denial. I had spoke to exceptions on the fringe, they protested, and replacement theology no longer existed. But it is quite clear, not just from what I was told but from what I have read of very influential Christian texts, that a hatred of Israel is being underpinned by a theological analysis which implies, at root, that the Jews must be punished by the loss of their homeland for their refusal to believe in Christ.’
She was saddened and frightened by the re-emergence of an anti-Semitism that many thought dead and buried in the gas ovens of the holocaust and, like many secular Jews was amazed and horrified to find it still alive and well in the Church, of all places. Her conclusion is poignant, but a cutting indictment.
‘In the depths of this moral darkness in which the Jews now find themselves besieged and almost alone and in which Israel's existence is threatened, the voices of the Christian Zionists (the Mr. Roots) are unwavering in their support and solace. Yet mainstream Christians denounce them. The Christian Zionists, they say, are no friends to the Jews since they would eventually have them all converted at the Second Coming. Well, if it comes to a choice between that and those Christians who would deny us our right to self-determination, make excuses for those who wish to kill us, peddle lies and write books inciting hatred against us, I think I know rather better where my friends are to be found.’
If we return to the Derek Prince article, he goes on to explain that the Jews, the people in question, were targets of Satan through their whole history, either through being enticed into idolatry (early history) or through complete destruction (later history). The reason for this hatred is that he knows that his days are numbered, a countdown culminating at the return of Jesus the Messiah. But this event won’t happen until two conditions are fulfilled.
Firstly, the Christian gospel is to be preached to all nations, “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.” Matthew 24:14
Secondly, the Jews must be in place and in a position to ask Jesus to return. In Matthew 23:38-39, Jesus had said to the Jews in Jerusalem, “See, your house is left to you desolate, for I say to you, you shall see Me no more till you say, ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.’”
The Jews must be in place, in this final drama at the end of all things, to ask Jesus to return. Who knows what the circumstances will be, but they are likely to be fairly extreme and desperate. Their hearts will be ready, the hardening spoken of in Chapter 18 would have been broken down. As it says in Zechariah 12:10: “And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they have pierced; they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a first-born.”
And when they do that … anti-Semitism will be no more, because the root cause of it will have been taken away. I pray that those Christians who have been hardened to Israel and the Jewish people don’t have to wait until then to realise the truth of their errors.
For the previous article in this series, click here.
For the next article in this series, click here.
To find out what is my favourite book of the Bible, click here.
You can reach Steve with any comments or questions at the Saltshakers Web Community website.