Your God, Not Mine
Lebanon is teetering on the brink of anarchy.
Yet, Israel continues wreaking death and devastation on a helpless people – with the blessing and of thousands of Christian Zionists worldwide.
Last night, I had the chance to take a look again into the mind of an avowed Christian Zionist when a member from my former church picked a bone with me over the Internet.
His name is Clement Low, aged 18 years and studies Mechanical Engineering at Singapore Polytechnic. He adheres to the Calvinist school of theology, but doesn’t know anything (or care) about the person of John Calvin.
An excerpt from our discourse:
Clement: ah you fail to understand
Clement: why they are killed.
Clement: it’s not who’s killed that matters.
Clement: it’s who’s provoked.
Clement: Israel is God’s chosen nation.
Clement: That’s the sole reason why you see in all cases Palestinian casualties are four times of Israeli casualties.
Me: Sole reason? *spit spit*
Clement: ah you have just spat on God
Clement: because you forget,
Clement: everything that happens is predestinated
Me: Aren’t we forgetting the powerful American Jewish lobby?
Clement: If it happens, it’s God’s plan that it does.
Me: Aren’t we forgetting the HUGE American aid to Israel?
Clement: we’re not talking about the huge American aid.
Clement: we’re talking about the ENORMOUS God aid.
Clement: and this in fulfilment of revelations
I am not anti-Jewish – but Clement, like many Christian Zionists, are colourblind – they see the world only in black and white. Hence, if I do not stand for Israel, then I must be a Hezbollah supporter. It is illogical and therefore impossible for me to be on the side of the innocent people who have, unfortunately, been bearing the brunt of Israeli and Hezbollah atrocity.
One wonders if these so-called “Christians” care about what is happening to our Christian brethren in the Levant (Lebanon’s population consists of a large Christian minority – 35%), who have been needlessly punished by Israeli air strikes, taking many a loved one away and leaving them with no electricity, sanitation or food.
Let us continue examining the mind of a Christian Zionist.
Clement: Killing in the Bible is condoned, under the act of war, under the act of self-defence.
Me: War? Lebanon isn’t at war!
Clement: oh but I do remember seeing a headline on my way out to school saying Israel declares war!
Not only are they devoid of compassion, they can’t get their facts right – maybe that’s how they can completely miss the plight of innocent Lebanese people. Israel has not met any resistance at all from the Lebanese armed forces. What does that tell you about Israel's actions?
Clement: I wouldn’t call it murder.
“Collateral damage”, perhaps?
Clement: the Jews are still the people of God. Like it or not, Christian or not.
I’m sorry, but being God’s chosen people is no excuse to launch punitive air strikes against a sovereign state because of two kidnapped soldiers that the state had nothing to do with. Somewhat like being your parents’ favourite child doesn’t warrant you the right to burn your brother’s room just because he stole your girlfriend.
Clement: Are you one who would wish to see Israel wiped off the face of the earth, or one who would see Israel survive? You cannot deny the hand of God in protecting Israel. Everything that has happened in various wars… clearly had the hand of God in it.
Like I said, the world is not so simple – not agreeing with Israel’s actions does not mean supporting Hezbollah and vice versa. The hand of God saved them so that their pride and sin might increase, making their final damnation and punishment the greater.
“WHEN I gather the PEOPLE OF ISRAEL from the NATIONS where they have been SCATTERED, I will show MYSELF HOLY among them in the sight of the nations. They will live in their OWN LAND, which I GAVE TO MY SERVANT JACOB. They will live there in safety and will build houses and plant vineyards: they will live in safety WHEN I INFLICT PUNISHMENT ON THEIR NEIGHBOURS WHO MALIGNED THEM. THEN THEY WILL KNOW THAT I AM THEIR GOD.”
So goes Ezekiel 28:25-26, a favourite Biblical verse to justify Israel’s actions. However, let us remember that Christian Zionists, like most evangelical Protestants, never read the Bible in context. Reading Ezekiel 12 and many other passages in the Scripture, one will find out that every promise of land in the Old Testament was CONDITIONAL on Israel fulfilling her side of the covenant. The Jews may have their homeland, but they will never have peace until that is accomplished.
Christian Zionism is a horrid and dreadful heresy.
There is nothing Christian about "Christian" Zionism. It has done more damage (through American neocons) in the Middle East than anything else. Evangelical Christian Zionism as we know it – Dispensationalism, Messianic Judaism, chiliasm (or millenarianism), the Rapture, etc – has nothing to do with Christianity whatsoever.
Christian Zionism is a natural byproduct of Calvinism, in its love for tribalism, election, racism and so-called “divine” violence. The Christian Zionist envies the aggression of the current Israeli state and wishes for the moral constraints of the New Testament were removed from him – as they are so often auto-removed in any event (see American foreign policy). Throw in Messianic Judaism, the endless fascination with the end of days and the “Rapture” – which are all tied to the Middle East – and our current predicament comes off as no surprise.
Leaving fundamentalist Presbyterianism gave made me realise I no longer have any grand theological need to support Israel. Ask other converts; they will tell you the same thing. Are we anti-Israel? Do we wish to see Israel "wiped off the map"? No, we do not. We are more mature than that.
Clement: I’m sure Israel gave ample warning.
Clement: Every life is precious.
Clement: well, you're looking at who got killed, rather than whose fault it really was.
Clement: Lebanon was asking for it.
He went on to speak of how Israel was provoked into doing the “Lord’s work”, but I won’t show it here – I’m sure my readers have heard it often enough.
No, Clement, it is not “God” who wills the death and destruction of Lebanon. It is yours, not mine. Yours is a god who is bereft of love and compassion. Yours is a god who shows no mercy to the weak. Yours is a god who will bring about the end of days. In short, yours is a pagan god who demands sacrifice.
Love… does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.
1 Corinthians 13:4-9
As you have just witnessed, there is nothing new about Christian Zionism. They remain as pigheaded, stubborn, cruel and vicious as they were 40 years ago. Any Israeli will tell you these ignorant, “born-again” goy bozos are the best friends the self-styled state of Israel ever had. Let these heretics run hand in hand with them. I say: VIVE CHRISTUS REX!