God told us, now Amnesty

Virulent racism and xenophobia in Israel are perennial nightmares, even when the victims are part of the family of Abraham (father of the Hebrew people), namely the family of Lot (Abraham’s nephew), and the family of Esau (twin brother to the man whose name the people and the land have inherited). Palestine is a fact, and everyone who lives there is Palestinian no matter what other name anyone acquires. People do not morph into another species because of where they live. Now that Amnesty International has published its findings of how non-Jewish Palestinians have fared in a nation whose law is globally recognized as central to morality.

Palestine is God’s chosen real estate

This comes down as a respected African American public figure speaks in ignorance about the attempted genocide of Jewish people, exposing the undercurrent in many communities. The facts are simply not circulating as extensively or vigorously as the misinformation. I have seen reference to the Palestinians as nobodies, people who merely call themselves by that name without a lock on any ancient people of the land. That only puts into clearer light the sentiment that foreigners can never be fully integrated into the Israelite (or Israeli) community. As long as Moses remains the sole authority in matters of history and identity that will be the case. Did not the rise of the Way (Christianity) successfully challenge the view that God has different strokes for non-Jews than he has for Jews? The prophets agree, and David in particular sings loudly, that the Holy City is a place for all humans, with pointed reference to Egypt, Babylon, Philistia, Tyre, and Ethiopia. Do we have to mention Ireland, Papua New Guinea, the American continent and the Caribbean island?

The wilful misbehaviour of the State of Israel is unmistakable when we see how the leaders of Jewish communities in North America sever their links with xenophobic foundations. Equality in modern societies may be often unrealized but it is a noble goal. Only the most depraved will keep up the narrative about superiority and resort to violence to maintain it. Women and children are not second class citizens, and citizenship can only be withheld for very specific class of criteria, to which ethnicity and nativity do not belong.

I am reading Amnesty’s report of Israeli apartheid and crimes against humanity because there is no nation that can place itself beyond scrutiny by appealing to a failed tradition. It is a big read. I would be pleasantly surprised if it changes my mind about our friends in Israel, Jew and Palestinian, or at least gives me reason to hope that goodness does triumph. We – Christian believers – the vast majority of evangelicals excluded – believe that justice running down like water is perhaps the most noble goal for rulers in all nations. Israel can deny all she wants, but the facts about walls, theft of land and destruction of homes, crushing curfews, covering up crimes in East Jerusalem, and assassinations will make her a laughingstock. The last laugh will be the Heavenly Father’s, and he insists that his king, established in Zion, deserves a kiss.

1) Why are the nations in an uproar And the peoples devising a vain thing? 2) The kings of the earth take their stand And the rulers take counsel together Against the Lord and against His Anointed, saying, 3) “Let us tear their fetters apart And cast away their cords from us!” 4) He who sits in the heavens laughs, The Lord scoffs at them. 5) Then He will speak to them in His anger And terrify them in His fury, saying, 6) “But as for Me, I have installed My King Upon Zion, My holy mountain.” 7) “I will surely tell of the decree of the Lord: He said to Me, ‘You are My Son, Today I have begotten You. 8) ‘Ask of Me, and I will surely give the nations as Your inheritance, And the very ends of the earth as Your possession.” (Psalms 2:1-8, NASB)