When Silence is Evil
It’s time to stand up against the scourge of antisemitism
I guess many people are breathing a sigh of relief now that the White House has closed its doors on Mr Trump. They think it’s all over.
But my message to them is, ‘You ain’t seen nothing yet!’ So, fasten your seat-belts, for you are in for an even bumpier ride from now on. Both Christians and Jews, on both sides of the Atlantic and beyond, are set to come under increasing pressure.
I will explain in due course. But meantime we have been marking the annual Holocaust Memorial Day – an opportunity for Christians, especially, to show their love and appreciation for those who gave us the glorious gospel, and our most precious Jesus. And it is particularly relevant in view of the fact that antisemitism is as rife today as it was in the 1930s.
Tomorrow (January 30th) will mark exactly 88 years since Adolf Hitler came to power. Though the Jewish population in Germany at the time – 600,000 – represented less than one per cent of the total, they had been the central theme of the elections, blamed for the nation’s economic and other troubles.
The rumblings of antisemitism were even felt in England where my Jewish grandmother was forced into a secret wedding through hostility from her Yorkshire in-laws.
Within a few years, six million Jews were slaughtered like animals in the Nazi death camps while the Church, for the most part, remained silent.
As pointed out by Dr Susanna Kokkonen in a Christian Friends of Israel (CFI) YouTube event aired last Sunday (January 24th), ‘theological’ antisemitism actually preceded all other forms on the basis that the Jews murdered Jesus, and the Church had thus replaced Israel as God’s chosen people.
But the Bible is clear that the crucifixion of Christ was not a mistake – Isaiah records that it was the Lord’s will to cause him to suffer (Isa 53:10) – and the Jews remain the “apple of his eye” (Zech 2:8) whom he will never forsake (Isa 31:3).
Part of our role, as Christians, is to comfort God’s people (Isa 40:1) and CFI run an Israel-based team who regularly visit, encourage and support Holocaust survivors, demonstrating the love of Christ in very practical ways.
A year ago, on the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz by the Red Army, few churches were practically engaged in showing their love for the Jewish people by at least marking the occasion. But there was a significant exception in High Wycombe, Bucks, where hundreds gathered to repent of persecuting Jews down the centuries, and specifically for their deportation from the town 800 years previously.
Don’t be tempted to think that by sitting on the fence and saying nothing, you are innocent of wrongdoing. Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who was martyred as he faced up to the Nazis, said: “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”
The Campaign Against Anti-Semitism has just published a most disturbing survey, revealing that 23% of British adults agreed with the statement that ‘Israel treats the Palestinians like the Nazis treated the Jews’. And just the other week, a number of Jewish houses on a London street were vandalised with crosses painted in what appeared to be blood.
This upsurge of antisemitism could have been significantly restrained if the Church as a whole had spoken up, just as Hitler could have been held back by a vociferous and courageous Church who refused to cooperate.
As Dr Kokkonen said, it has almost become politically correct to target the State of Israel. And, in my opinion, the new administration in America looks like turning into a totally politically-correct state which brooks no dissent.
They are in office thanks in part to the political violence that erupted across American cities last year focused around the Democrat-backed revolutionary forces of Black Lives Matter and Antifa, who appear to have had more to do with the storming of Capitol Hill than so-called Trump supporters. But the mainstream media won’t tell you that.
According to LifeSiteNews, Mr Trump was still making his speech in another part of Washington when the mayhem began. And according to Caroline Glick, of Israel Hayom, “The Senators and members of Congress who were raising objections to the electoral votes of several states based on widespread allegations of voter fraud were in the middle of making their claims when the protesters attempted to force their way into the joint session. They condemned the protesters.”
BLM is clearly opposed to Western civilization generally, and are rabidly antisemitic to boot. Their charter rejects Israel’s right to exist and its members have specifically targeted synagogues and Jewish businesses.
Meanwhile the Democrat-controlled House of Representatives has approved a new rule barring the use of gender-specific terms such as father or mother, serving to advance BLM’s goal (and that of the gay rights movement as a whole) of destroying the nuclear family. And the new President, Joe Biden, has already chosen transgender Rachel Levine as his assistant secretary of health.
The Democrats are also reportedly set to pass a so-called ‘Green New Deal’ expected to cost US taxpayers over $10 trillion as it destroys America’s fossil fuel industries. Like antisemitism, climate change dogma has become so PC that hardly anyone bothers to question it anymore.
The burning of the Reichstag (parliament) soon after the Nazis took power proved a perfect excuse for introducing tyrannical new powers restricting freedom, especially for the Jewish community. Tragically, the storming of the Capitol looks like providing a pretext for a whole raft of anti-family, antisemitic and anti-Christian laws.
As I said, fasten your seat-belts, put your head on your knees (as airline passengers are instructed to do in the event of an emergency landing), and start praying. Pray for God to give you courage in these troubled times, and for Israel to be comforted by His promise in which he says: “Do not be afraid, you worm Jacob, little Israel, do not fear, for I myself will help you.” (Isa 41:14)
Charles Gardner is author of Israel the Chosen, available from Amazon; Peace in Jerusalem, available from olivepresspublisher.com; A Nation Reborn, available from Christian Publications International; and King of the Jews, also available from Christian Publications International.