I was praying/reflecting the other day on what I’m asking people to do as I share the story of my time in the West Bank / Israel. Would love any feedback.
1. Repent of theological or political positions which eclipse the full application of the Abrahamic Covenant to be a blessing to all nations and peoples. See especially Gen. 12:1-3. Isn’t the Good News supposed to be Good News for everybody?
2. Do better Biblical and theological work around: a. The Holy Land in relation to the Kingdom of God, b. An Eschatology that embraces the world, and this region, instead of abandoning it. and c. Answering the question, “who are the chosen people?” in the context of the full Biblical story. What are they chosen for? And who is to be included in the blessing?
3. Exercise fairness, i.e. “principled impartiality” in our dealings with people and issues impacted by activity in the region. No room for Antisemitism, Islamophobia, or forgetting what is happening to the persecuted church [in this case the Palestinian Christian community]. In this vein, we need to correct stereotypes that characterize Palestinians as a violent people bent on the destruction of Israel, or Christians who ask questions about the policies of the Israeli government as anti-semitic.
4. Support, show solidarity for ALL who seek a just peace, including Israeli and Jewish activists. Engage in protective presence, an ethic modeled and taught by Jesus, with the vulnerable. Tell their stories far and wide.
5. Resist injustice. Demonstrate a Christian faith that is genuine in action and deeds as well as mere belief and doctrine. Afterall, as I mention in a book I’m writing, orthodoxy without orthopraxy is heresy. Think about the words of Jesus near the end of Matthew.
6. Come and see. An invitation to take trips to the Holy Land to see, experience and witness Palestinian hospitality and see the consequences of policies which violate international humanitarian law and Christian ethics. See the holy sites but also listen to Israelis and Palestinians tell their stories. FMI drop an email to me: firstname.lastname@example.org. Add “Holy Land tour” to the subject line.
This is my wish list. I need some time to percolate, mature, improve, add, subtract. (postscript: you may want to host a screening of one of our movies and in addition start a 6-7 week study following our new study: From Peacetalking to Peacemaking).