Pastoral Musings from Rain City

it's about 'what is church?' it's about whether 'emergent' is the latest Christian trend or something more substantial. it's musing on what it means to live faithfully...in the city, in America, in community, intergenerationally, at this time in history...

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Robertson Rants

If you read this article in the New York Times, you'll understand why it's embarassing, at times, to be called a Christian, though not nearly as embarassing as being called a pastor. The pastor who thinks gays in New Orleans were the reason God pointed Katrina there, who thinks that assisination of socialist leaders is justified, and who now thinks that Sharon's health problems are becuase he is seeking peace in the middle east is the pastor who needs a muzzle.

But what do you think about this comment, found in the article: many conservative Christians agree in principle with his comments about the Middle East - the Scriptures, they agree, call for a unified Israel.

If you believe that the scriptures call for a unified Israel, believe that the promises made to Abraham and David still apply to the literal blood nation of Israel today, then I'd venture to say that you agree with the quoted statement above. And if you agree with the statement, then you need to wonder, at least, why Sharon would give away land promised to his people by God in the Bible.

This is why theology matters! It effects how we view current events. If you're interested in unpacking how the church has viewed the nation of Israel over the years, check this out. In a nutshell, Covenant theologians see the promises of the Old Testament, given to Israel, are now received by the church, though in a different form. Dispensational theology sees the Old Testament promises given to Israel as still belonging to Israel to this day.

If you're dispensational, the whole land, including the west bank, and Gaza, belong to Israel.

How does one decide which way to believe? Which way do I believe? Why?

I'll give you a hint - both views have problems. But I hope you see this much: ideas and beliefs have consequences!

2 Comments:

At 9/1/06 09:50, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Richard,
I used to pass over the Scriptures regarding the love of my enemies--"I don't have any enemies", I'd tell myself. I think oddly, Robertson/Falwell would fall into such a category. Quite sad really.
Zadok

 
At 9/1/06 11:50, Anonymous Lisa said...

As someone on the wrong end of Robertson and his kabal's comments, I must say that his rhetoric is not only infuriating, it's downright dangerous! Many who watch him every day buy fully into what he says without considering the consequences of the actions he is calling for, or even the scriptural basis for his claims. His words promote hatred and extreme bias, which can, and has, led to violence. In fact, his words viewed in a vacuum could easily be confused for the rhetoric of the radical Muslim clerics that call for violence. In essence, he is our own radical cleric, but we view him through a lense, a lense probably not very different than the lense many Islamic people of the middle east use when interpreting the words of their leaders. It's important for me to note here, that I don't believe Islam is a violent religion and I wouldn't begin to suggest that all Islamic leaders call for violence, just I wouldn't suggest that of all Christian leaders. Robertson doesn't only condone violence against people outside of the US either. His hate speech against gay and lesbian people, and anyone who isn't just like him for that matter, promotes violence against people within our own borders. At the very least he serves as a hateful mouthpiece in the supposed name of God that isolates and separates people from the truth of a loving God.

 

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