For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place and you … will perish. (Esther 4)
I am fully aware of the diversity existing within the Christian world. I know that Presbyterian Church USA (PCUSA), for example, does not even represent all the Presbyterians, let alone other denominations. I also know about the millions of Christians that are true allies of the Jewish people and Israel.
I am also aware of the preference of many to see Christian anti-Semites as "false Christians." But this seems too convenient. It's like me calling self-hating Jews like Norman Finkelstein heathens. Anti-Semitism is a Christian problem that decent Christians need to deal with decisively.
That being said, let me direct attention toward another disturbing growing phenomenon: Christian ties to Islamic terror organizations that are primarily concerned with Israel.
The most publicized case for such ties came to light after Senator Ted Cruz appeared at the inaugural summit of a new organization called In Defense of Christians (IDC), convened in Washington DC this last September. Cruz was booed out after saying that the participants should support Israel.
A day before the conference, Cruz discovered that some of the speakers from the Middle East, like the patriarchs of the Syriac and Maronite Churches, were expressing support for Hezbollah. While these two patriarchs can be excused for befriending terrorists for the sake of their communities, one must wonder about the motivation of some PCUSA members in cozying up to the Lebanese terrorist militia.
PCUSA ties to Hezbollah were exposed a few days ago by the Israeli legal organization Shurat Hadin (Israel Law Center). Contrary to the vague allegations raised by Cruz, on December 5 Shurat Hadin filed a detailed IRS complaint against PCUSA for conducting prohibited activities under US tax law that included meetings between PCUSA members and Hezbollah terrorists.
According to Shurat Hadin, "documentary and video evidence was sent to the IRS showing PCUSA delegates meeting with members of Hezbollah – which is designated by the US as a terrorist organization – as well as publishing anti-Semitic materials and passing around political advocacy materials in violation of its status."
PCUSA is not alone. Leaving aside Palestinian Christian terrorism, a troublesome phenomenon not properly addressed by any of the churches, a growing number of Western Christians have started to collaborate with the Muslim fight against Israel, primarily via support for anti-Israel Palestinian Protestant organizations like Sabeel and Kairos.
Much more blatant is the Christian support for Hamas that has grown virally after the summer’s Gaza war. Non-denominational movements like Tony Compolo’s Red-Letter Christians continue to be counted among those trying to help Hamas to "free Gaza."
And films like With God on Our Side by Porter Speakman, Jr, formerly of Youth With a Mission, and Little Town of Bethlehem, produced by Oral Roberts University chairman Mart Green, are much more than run-of-the-mill anti-Israeli propaganda. By romanticizing Muslim expressions of hate for Israel, such films have effectively become recruitment tools.
Though Christian support for Palestinian violence has thus far remained nonviolent itself, to think this will remain the case is naive at best.
Strange as it may sound, it is precisely at times like this, times of capitulation to false and deadly anti-Semitic narratives, that Christians can shine through and demonstrate the true nature of their faith, which is nourished by Jewish roots. There are many millions of good and honest Christians out there. Will we hear their voices?