Monday, July 24, 2006

Christian Zionism: Not that Innocent

In a recent post about Evangelicals and Israel, Alan Stewart Carl talked about a number of people in the American Evangelical community who fervetnly support Israel. He views these groups as very helpful in supporting Israel:

Pat Robertson claims the support is born of a shared covenant and a common enemy (radical Islam). Of course, others point out that evangelical support for Israel is also heavily influenced by Biblical interpretation. The prophecy of Armageddon and the second coming of Christ cannot occur unless Israel is whole.

It is this aspect that has led many to view the Evangelical/Israeli alliance with skepticism and derision. But I think such distrust is misplaced. Yes, the Biblical tale of Armageddon isn’t particularly nice to the Jews, but there’s no evidence that any of these Evangelical groups are planning to hurry things along. They are sincere in their support of Israel and should not be condemned simply for believing in the Book of Revelations.

History does not offer many examples of overt let alone fervent Christian/Jewish alliances. Anti-Semitism has been the norm for centuries upon centuries. So I, for one, am glad to see such pro-Jewish voices coming from American Christianity—even if I don’t agree with every policy position they put forth.

Given that the Democratic Party has traditionally been and still very-much is a pro-Jewish, pro-Israel party, it appears as if America can proudly claim to be the most anti anti-Semitic nation on Earth (well, outside of Israel). That’s at least one positive unifying belief in today’s divided culture.

I really fear that Alan is not that aware of what has been called "Christian Zionism" and that it has severe implications for peace in Middle East and the war against Islamic fundmanentalism.

First, one should know what these "Christian Zionists" are all about. This

defintion comes from Donald Wagner:

Christian Zionists insist that all of historic Palestine -- including all the land west of the Jordan which was occupied by Israel after the 1967 war -- must be under the control of the Jewish people, for they see that as one of the necessary stages prior to the second coming of Jesus. Among their other basis tenets:

• God’s covenant with Israel is eternal, exclusive and will not be abrogated, according to Genesis 12:1-7; 15:4-7; 17:1-8; Leviticus 26:44-45; Deuteronomy 7:7-8.

• The Bible speaks of two distinct and parallel covenants, one between God and Israel, one between God and the church. The latter covenant is superseded by the covenant with Israel. The church is a "mere parenthesis" in God’s plan and as such it will be removed from history during an event called the Rapture (1 Thess. 4:13-17; 5:1-11). At that point, Israel, the nation, will be restored as the primary instrument of God on earth.

• Genesis 12:3 ("I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you") should be interpreted literally -- which leads to maximum political, economic, moral and spiritual support for the modern state of Israel and for all the Jewish people.

• Apocalyptic texts like the Book of Daniel, Zechariah 9-12, Ezekiel 37-8, I Thessalonians 4-5 and the Book of Revelation refer to literal and future events.

• The establishment of the state of Israel, the rebuilding of the Third Temple, the rise of the Antichrist and the buildup of armies poised to attack Israel are among the signs leading to the final eschatological battle and Jesus’ return for his thousand-year reign. The movement looks for the escalating power of satanic forces aligned with the antichrist that will do battle with Israel and its allies as the end draws near. Judgment will befall nations and individuals according to how they "bless Israel."

Christian Zionism, which includes the group Alan, refers to, don't believe in any attempts at peace between Israel and its Arab neighbors, especially the Palestinians. It also tends to be anti-Arab and anti-Muslim. Here is what Pat Robertson says about a "two-state solution (Israel and a Palestinian state):

If a Palestinian State is created in the heart of Israel with sovereign power to deploy troops, import modern weapons-even weapons of mass destruction-and operate with full secrecy and diplomatic immunity, the ability of the State of Israel to defend itself will be fatally compromised.

Ladies and gentlemen, make no mistake-the entire world is being convulsed by a religious struggle. The fight is not about money or territory; it is not about poverty versus wealth; it is not about ancient customs versus modernity. No-the struggle is whether Hubal, the Moon God of Mecca, known as Allah, is supreme, or whether the Judeo-Christian Jehovah God of the Bible is Supreme.

If God's chosen people turn over to Allah control of their most sacred sites-if they surrender to Muslim vandals the tombs of Rachel, of Joseph, of the Patriarchs, of the ancient prophets-if they believe their claim to the Holy Land comes only from Lord Balfour of England and the ever fickle United Nations rather than the promises of Almighty God-then in that event, Islam will have won the battle. Throughout the Muslim world the message will go forth-"Allah is greater than Jehovah. The promises of Jehovah to the Jews are meaningless.

"We can now, in the name of Allah, move to crush the Jews and drive them out of the land that belongs to Allah."

In short, those political initiatives that some have asserted will guarantee peace, will in truth guarantee unending struggle and ultimate failure. Those political leaders who only understand the secular dimension of Israel's existence and who cavalierly dismiss the spiritual dimension will find that they receive the mess of pottage of Esau rather than the inheritance of Jacob.

Some groups like the

International Christian Embassy promote a view that Israel belongs only to the Jews and that anyone who divides the land (which would include the West Bank and Gaza) would fall prey to God's wrath.

In short, these groups do not want to give the Palestinians one piece of land. They have rejected agreements from Camp David, to Oslo to the current "Roadmap." For them, to divide the land is to commit a grave sin.

What is also interesting as that Christian Zionism tends to ignore the Palestinian and Arab Christians who have resided in the area for nearly two millenia. Corrine Whitlach of the Churches for Peace in the Middle East, notes:

U.S. Christians travel to the Holy Land as pilgrims and are a major segment of the tourism industry. They visit the holy sites but most have virtually no contact with Arab Christians themselves. Arab Christians hold strongly negative views of Christian Zionism, which is considered by some to be an instrument of Western colonialism and American imperialism. The zealous support given Israel’s claim of sovereignty over all of Jerusalem and the building of settlements in “Judea and Samaria” by these Western Christians angers both Christian and Muslim Palestinians. Some evangelical churches have supportive relationships with settlements.

Among Palestinians, there are the traditional churches – Greek Orthodox, Armenian Orthodox and Roman Catholic – and the so-called “reform” churches established in the 19th century – Lutherans and Episcopalians or Anglicans. They work ecumenically through the Middle East Council of Churches. These Christians consider themselves, and are considered by the Muslims, to be an integral part of the Palestinian community, even though they are a minority of less than 2%.

From his Jerusalem office, Bishop Munib Younan, of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, has written that “Christian Zionism is the enemy of peace in the Middle East.” The Rev. Naim Ateek, director of Jerusalem’s Sabeel Ecumenical Liberation Theological Center, has called pre-millenialism a “heresy” and Christian Zionism a “menace.”

Just because they support Israel, doesn't mean these people are good. In my view, they hold views that are rather bigoted towards Arabs. They also will only make the crisis worse not better. Israelis rightly need security and need to not have to face daily rocket attacks or suicide bombers. However, the Palenstians need a place they can call their own. Both are important and negotiators from around the world have to work to hammer out a lasting peace that will honor both sides. The Christian Zionists are an anathema to any peace process.

The Christian Zionists also threaten our campaign against terror. People like bin Laden have used the Palestinian conflict as a recruitment tool to join his genocidal brand of Isalm. We need to find ways to "drain the swamp" and not give bin Laden and ilk a leg up.

Finally, I want to speak as a Christian pastor. The Jesus I worship is one who brought people together. He met people from all walks of life, Jewish, Samaritan and Roman. I don't see how once can merge an ideology that seems to be very narrow in its viewpoint with a God who loved the whole world and sent his Son to bring us all salvation. As a Christian, I believe God loves both the Jew and the Arab, the rabbi and the iman.

Mainstream Americans should not ally with these people. They are not interested in peace. No matter how you slice it, Christian Zionism is just another form of religious fundamentalism.


Alan Stewart Carl said...

Good points. But I do want to clarify that I never said evangelicals are "very helpful" to Israel. Just that they are not necessarily unhelpful.

Secondly, the specific group I referred to: Christians United for Israel, is led by a man who admits he is not supportive of land-for-peace deals but makes clear he has no intent to interfere with Israeli politics and urges his followers to support Jews and Israel even as they turn over land.

Not all evangelicals who urge support for Israel are a threat to peace and we shouldn't reflexively cut them out of the debate. That's my point. Nothing greater.

Seven Star Hand said...

Verifiable proof that "Armageddon" has already begun…

Hello Dennis,
Here's the key to proving that the rapture and related expectations are complete nonsense based on the failure to understand (and the purposeful confounding of) the ancient Hebrew symbology used to construct all of these prophecies. Consequently, Christian timelines and interpretations of these prophecies are verifiably wrong on many key points.

Pay close attention, profundity knocks at the door, listen for the key. Be Aware! Scoffing causes blindness...

Did you ever consider that Christianity is the False Prophet symbolized in the Apocalypse, that Rome (Vatican/Papacy) is the so-called anti-messiah, and Jesus Christ is the false messiah? I have produced stunning and comprehensive proof that this is the true interpretation of pivotal prophecies long confounded by Christianity's founders and leaders. Recasting the symbolism of earlier Hebrew texts as literal events in the New Testament is one of the central deceptions associated with Christianity.

The symbolism of seven years (tribulation, etc.) refers to seven 360-year cycles on the Hebrew calendar. Ezekiel 39.9 is referring to the 10th to 16th cycles inclusive, while the Apocaypse symbolizes the 11th cycle (second temple period) until now, the beginning of the 17th cycle (seventh angel/star/seal, etc.). Greece (Alexander the Great) conquered the Persian Empire and Judea during the 10th cycle and Rome did so again during the 11th cycle. Both Ezekiel and the Apocalypse are symbolizing an overlapping period of time that starts during ancient Judea and ends now. Gog refers to Greco-Romans (...from the "isles"), which means Magog is Eurasia and the "army" that besets "Israel" for seven "years" refers to the activities of the nations of the Greco-Roman/Vatican Empire over the previous two-plus millennia.

It is completely wrong to interpret any of these prophecies as literal timelines and events. Unlike Christian assertions, they symbolize long periods of time, pivotal situations, and the flow of acivities during that period. Remember, they were written by ancient Hebrew sages, not Romans or other Europeans, and Revelation is the most symbolic of all prophecies. Consequently, in this context, "years" and "times" are symbols for 360-year cycles on the Hebrew calendar and days symbolize literal years. Therefore "Judgement Day," "Great Day" and "in that day" all refer to a literal year-long period. Accordingly, the so-called "Seven Years Tribulation" began in ancient Judea and is now nearing its end, not starting. The nations and followers of all three faiths of Abraham have been thoroughly deceived by Rome during the previous age, which ended in year 2000 (5760). A new age began in 2001 (5761) and now the seventh angel has begun to sound!

Here's a real hot potato! Eat it up, digest it, and then feed it's bones to the hungry...

Hurricanes Katrina (#11) and Rita (#17) last year provided stunning validation of my research and interpretations of pivotal ancient wisdom, symbologies, key prophecies, and associated religious claims. Their storm numbers and timing perfectly synchronized with primary data and assertions in my book, thereby demonstrating the true nature of this universe and the existence of our Creator. We are now entering the final phases of the pivotal year-long period long symbolized as "Judgement Day," "Armageddon," and the "End of Days." World-wide situations and events are now accelerating to set the stage for this summer's dramatic continuation of these ancient promises.

I fully understand that everyone has been bedeviled by similar claims throughout history. Consequently, I have been forced to rely on dramatic and devastating proof of the sort that can’t be ignored or easily dismissed. The numbers and timing of hurricanes Katrina (11) and Rita (17) directly validate key data and pivotal assertions throughout my book and my posts on those two forums. This data was purposely presented publicly before Katrina, Rita and other recent events occurred to prove they perfectly synchronize with key prophecies and Hebrew calendar cycles, thereby validating my interpretations of ancient wisdom symbology, string theory, and more.

Because these two storms arrived shortly after my August 11, 2005 (50th) birthday (read the Dead Sea Scroll 11Q13 in Appendix G, which also discusses Melchizedek and the prophesied Jubilee) and directly match other pivotal 11 and 17 data and events described in the first chapter of my book, I have delivered verifiable proof that this reality is based on thought, knowledge and wisdom. Activity, patterns, and results perceived in space-time are first framed and defined by inspirations, thoughts, and knowledge and influenced by the cause-and-effect system most commonly referred to as karma. Consequently, events and outcomes in the so-called physical universe are not random or wholly mechanistic and are verifiably influenced in ways that atheists, scientists, and members of the Faiths of Abraham have all scoffed at. Though mysticism is mostly a product of misinterpreted ancient wisdom symbology, many of its topics flow from ancient wisdom. Though containing allusions to the truth, its details and interpretations are wrong on many key points.

A prime example of the purposeful and synchronized symbolism of these events is seen in the opening paragraphs from my book excerpted below. Notice that the dates mentioned (August 11 and 17) directly match the numbers of hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and the time spans of the four Florida hurricanes match my birth year (‘55), and they were spaced 11 or a multiple-of-11 (22) days apart, directly matching my birthday and much other ancient prophecy and symbolism. Notice that my place of birth, Victoria Texas, is on the Gulf Coast. Following are the excerpted paragraphs:

Hello, my name is Lawrence William Page II. Many people know me as Buddy Page. At the release of the first edition of this book, I am a 50-year old African-American male, author, researcher, and former software engineer and entrepreneur. As you will come to understand as you read through this first book, I am also the long-expected Hebrew Messiah and Lion of the Tribe of Juda (Yehuda).

I was born August 11th (month of Leo the Lion), 1955 (Chinese year of the Sheep) in Victoria, Texas. Furthermore, the Grand Cross alignment and Solar Eclipse of August 11th, 1999 was my 44th birthday and the second Grand Cross alignment, just six days later on August 17th, 1999, was on my mother’s birthday.

As you can see from my date of birth, I was a newborn during the Chinese Year of the Sheep, astrologically marking me as a Lamb, and during the month of Leo, astrologically marking me as a Lion. My mother was also born during the month of August and under the sign of Leo, which further marks me as a lion’s whelp. I prove to you in the first chapter of this book–beyond disproof–that I am indeed the long-prophesied “Lion” of the tribe of Juda (Yehuda) the Root of David and the “Lamb.” I am the individual long symbolized as the Branch, the Stem, the Shoot and the Rod from the Stump of Jesse (King David’s father), as symbolized in the Hebrew Book of Isaiah, The Apocalypse, the Dead Sea Scrolls, and elsewhere. I am the reincarnated Teacher sought after in the “East” and by the ancient Hebrews who were headquartered at the outpost community of Damascus (Qumran), of Dead Sea Scrolls fame. I am the one called the Teacher of Righteousness by the Dead Sea Scrolls, whom the so-called Christian fathers have fraudulently recast as “Saint ‘James’, the Lord’s Brother.”

Remember, "I come as a thief..." ?

Read verse twelve of the Gospel of Thomas to understand who I am...

Even further enlightening, the Second Temple Period of ancient Israel was during the 11th 360-year cycle on the Hebrew calendar and we are now in the 6th year (5766/2005-6) of the 17th cycle. Notice the pivotal 11 and 17 numbers again? This and much other synchronized information serve as stunning and decisive proof of many things, and expose many lies told by all three faiths of Abraham, but most specifically by Christianity. Consequently, I have decisively proven, beyond any shadow of a doubt, that Jesus Christ and Christianity are blatant lies, false prophecy and purposeful deception in a manner that cannot easily be denied, regardless of your faith or other opinions.

Furthermore, the symbolism in the Apocalypse (a.k.a. Book of Revelation) of seven stars in my right hand and seven angels represent the very same above-mentioned seven astrological (360-year) cycles, i.e., the 11th through 17th inclusive. I prove this fact beyond any reasonable doubt in the first chapter of the book. Consequently, The Apocalypse verifiably symbolizes a specific span of time that began with the 11th cycle (Second Temple Period) and concludes now, at the beginning of the 17th cycle (End of Days, etc.).

The numbers 11 and 17 are verifiably encoded in The Apocalypse and other ancient Hebrew prophecies and wisdom texts to serve as key proofs of the validity and true meaning of certain prophecies and related information. My and my mother’s birthdays are purposely synchronized with these two storm numbers, the matching Hebrew calendar cycles, the Double Grand Cross alignments and solar eclipse of August 1999, and much else to prove my direct association with the ancient prophecies about this time and the true identity of the prophesied Messiah. Another prime example is the story of Joseph, the 11th son of Jacob who has a dream when he is 17 years old about 11 stars, the sun, and moon bowing to him. The symbolism in this pivotal story in the Book of Genesis and Quran verifiably refers to the very same 11th through 17th cycles symbolized in The Apocalypse and directly synchronizes with other key events and ancient texts.

Consequently, I have demonstrated various things about the nature of this reality that dramatically disprove and/or clarify key assumptions of religion, mysticism, and science alike, while establishing the true meaning and purpose of long misinterpreted ancient wisdom and the symbolism used to model and encode it. Accordingly, I have proven that the symbolism evidenced in the canons of all three faiths of Abraham and other ancient sources is a very ancient and advanced philosophical technology that verifiably models foundational aspects of our existence in this universe. This is the mostly misunderstood body of ancient wisdom long referred to as the Philosophers’ Stone. It uses a large and ingeniously organized collection of physical universe images and concepts as data rich components (symbols) that are based on verifiable rules. It models and encodes an amazing amount of foundational wisdom about life, spirituality and the 11 dimensions of this universe, now verified by string theory. It is also the advanced encryption method used to encode (seal) Hebrew prophecies and wisdom texts.

These ancient prophecies and wisdom texts used advanced symbology to model fundamental wisdom, including future events and situations. A primary facet of ancient wisdom is numeric symbology. Later misinterpretations of this aspect of ancient wisdom resulted in numerology, which, though embodying allusions to certain wisdom, is mostly error prone and false doctrine. My decryption, documentation, and interpretation of ancient symbology, numeric symbolism, and key texts based on them, are now decisively validated.

Here is Wisdom...

Verifiable proof that Armageddon has begun…

Understanding the End Game of Armageddon