An American Christian, hours after arriving in Israel on tour a few years ago, let out a shriek that had her tour guide (me) hurrying to her seat on the bus.
“Look at that man! He’s smoking!” she cried. “Yes,” I said calmly, eyebrows quizzical. “So he is.”
“But,” her voice was clearly distressed, “it’s supposed to be the Holy Land!”
Admittedly this was a curious case — the dear lady was surely a sweet innocent — but it speaks to a perception I have found in Gentile circles, which should surely be addressed:
Yes, multitudes of Evangelicals will almost reflexively express “love and support” for Israel, something this universally-hated nation has been starved of throughout Christian history, and really welcomes. But there often seems to be a certain superficiality in knowledge about the historical details of Israel’s rebirth, a naiveté about her present spiritual state, and a woeful obliviousness to what the Bible clearly foretells as the Jews’ ultimate destination: Israel’s full restoration to the LORD.
Holding an overly rosy view of Israel can (and...
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