Arabs and Jews. Need I say more to get your attention? These people groups have been at odds since Abraham's lifetime.
But my topic is not so much the fact Arabs and Jews are often in tension if not conflict, but rather, how Christians evaluate, describe, and respond to the people of either and both lineages. I've written about this before in this blog: Must Pro-Jew Mean Anti-Arab, or Jews vs Arabs Or Jews And Arabs. But now I've written a new piece for broader distribution called "Confused Christians: Jews Versus Arabs Or Jews And Arabs."
What interests and what grieves me about this topic is how easily some Christians seem to align themselves with a way of interpreting the Scripture that ends with Christians believing the modern secular state of Israel can do not wrong. Further, people who embrace this approach argue that the United States should stand as Israel's uncritical ally. For many, though not all, who assume this position, it's an easy next step to taking an anti-Arab outlook.
For the record, I'm not against Israel per se, and I am certainly not anti-Jew. But neither am I anti-Arab or anti-Palestinian, or for that matter anti-Turk or anti-Iranian. This I can say about a people or people group even though I certainly disagree from time to time, if not often, with what given national governments do or how they position themselves, whether Israel or Arab world countries, Turkey, or Iran.
The article entitled "Confused Christians" simply recognizes that the Word of God calls upon Christian people to love all, to forgive as Christ forgave us, to share the message of the Gospel with all, to be no one's sworn enemy. This isn't la-la land thinking. I acknowledge the presence of evil in the world and the necessity of dealing with it harshlly via law and order, criminal justice systems, governments, and unfortunately at times armed forces and coercion. But these biblical principles of justice stand for all people, no matter their ethnic, racial, or national heritage or homeland.
Christians, I believe, need to pray for and work toward peace and reconciliation between Jews and Arabs even if history seems to suggest the impossibility of this outcome. God loves Jews and Arabs and salvation by faith in Christ is available to all.
© Rex M. Rogers – All Rights Reserved, 2012
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