Thursday, July 12, 2007

A Friend in Need Should Not Be Conned

by: Schvach Yid

Maybe we Jews don’t understand. I doubt it, but there are those in the Evangelical community who say just that - we Jews are lost, or that we Jews have lost our way.

Pastor John Hagee, founder and leader of the Cornerstone Church of San Antonio Texas, I think said it best in one of his televised sermons, something like ‘the Jews wrote the Bible, both their Torah and the New Testament’ (not a verbatim quote). That we wrote the ‘NT’ and reject it as scripture should announce plenty to the world that insists we Jews are off target. If we really wrote the ‘Gospels’ and their subsequent writings and reject them, then there’s significance in our decision to have done so, and it’s not that we fail to understand our own writings. Don’t the proselytizing evangelists think we understand our own literature?

Shelley Neese has recently contributed an article to the Opinion section of Arutz Sheva titled: The Rise of CUFI, which can be found at: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/7254

CUFI is an acronym for ‘Christians United For Israel’, and was founded by John Hagee. The gist of the article, and of my TV viewing experiences concerning this matter, is that American evangelists are on the side of Jews and Israel, without any attached strings. Well, not quite. Chaptzem read of John Hagee’s recently published book Jerusalem Countdown. Sorry, you’ll have to purchase it. It’s not available as a free download, unlike, for instance, Tzvi Fishman’s book Secret of the Brit, which is one of Reb Fishman’s literary attempts to get Jews off our chazerish sex kick and back on the ‘straight and narrow’ concerning our comportment, in public and in the bedroom.
His book can be found at:
http://www.jewishsexuality.com/content/section/6/33/.

Back to the evangelists. Their shtick is proselyzation – that’s what evangelist means!
Look it up in a dictionary. It means to proclaim, spread the ‘word’ and convert. And let's not forget the Southern Baptist Convention. A baptist is a person who baptizes, as in 'John the Baptist'. A person who is baptized is called just that - baptized. These groups have adopted names that describe exactly what they and their intentions are, or as Rabbi
Moshe Cahana is reputed to have uttered back in the days when he served as the chief of intelligence of the Irgun: ‘The darkest spot is right under the lamp’ (The Revolt by Menachem Begin, Nash Publishing, 1977 ed.).

Everyone needs friends. We Jews and Israel need all the friends we can muster, but a con artist is no friend. No one wants or needs to be treated like a fool. I’ve heard some of Pastor John Hagee’s presentations on TV delivered as sermons to his flock in San Antonio Texas. He had a two part series on Israel and the Jews. It was all very supportive. No effort at conversion was made. Then I popped into a bookstore and gave his book Jerusalem Countdown a nice long going-over; after all, a sales pitch for the book was made by the author following his televised sermon, not from the pulpit, but as a – well - separate commercial. He’s proselytizing jadies and jents. And his other sermons I’ve heard tell it all.

So what can I say to Pastor John Hagee other than ‘thank you for being you – you are loved’, and not because he thinks we Jews need a good straightening out, but because of the work he has done in making the lives of the Yiddin living in San Antonio more bearable. The American Bible Belt isn’t exactly ‘Jew friendly’. I live in the American Bible Belt – don’t ask! Rabbi Aryeh Scheinberg has headed Congregation Rodfei Sholom in San Antonio for the past ’34 years’ (http://www.ou.org/network/shuls/rodfei/). Rabbi Scheinberg appeared with Pastor Hagee on a TV stint where the Rabbi thanked the Pastor for the Pastor’s efforts in helping to make the presence of Jews more acceptable to the general San Antonio community. Most of those folks are undoubtedly good ole evangelists. Nice!

After reading her article The Rise of CUFI I emailed Shelley Neese. Here it is (these people get me steamed):
Sorry, but I had a long look at Pastor Hagee's book 'Jerusalem Countdown', and I've listened to some of his sermons delivered in his church in San Antonio that have been televised in America. I don't buy the seeming risk-free offer. Evangelical love for Israel may be unconditional, but the long range goal is obvious.
By the way, a CUFI is an article of head apparel worn by Moslem men.
Lastly, it's high time the Christian world buried its anti-Jewish hatchet, as long as it doesn't do it in Jewish skulls. I welcome Christian friendship and support;
Israel and Jews worldwide need all the friends we can muster. Living in America's Bible Belt I've encountered no minor amount of overt Jew hatred, both in speech and deed, and in this regard, the work done by Pastor Hagee in San Antonio in his effort to make life for the Jews of that city more bearable has been exemplary. Thank you for your support and for your very well written article. Just don't screw it up. On my next visit to Israel, I don't want to be greeted with Christian crosses everywhere. Israel is supposed to be the Jewish Homeland.The Jewish Homeland should not only be Jewish, it should look Jewish as well. It's just a fingernail clipping of a country, and as such, leaving it to Jews should not pose a problem for anyone, except of course those who can't stand us, or who pretend to be what the Bible says of Jews. In your land I think it's called replacement theology. I have no idea what Islam calls it. In the Land of Israel it's called domination. And the next time I visit Meggido, I don't want to be greeted with the oration of an evangelical preacher. Please don't get me wrong, I don't consider myself a bigot, it's just that we have had enough! Please knock it off already!

And thank you for being you. You are loved!

Well, ‘that’s all folks’ (my apology to Mel Blanc formerly of Warner Brothers, may he rest in peace).

This Shabbos is not only Shabbos Matot-Massei, it’s also Bastille Day, so ‘go out there’ and let that special someone in your life know exactly what you think. It’s not the guillotine, but who wants that headache?

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