Sunday, November 29, 2009

Anti-Jew and Israel, anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant-be careful

Sometimes interesting information just pops up when I am not expecting it. Now I am going to mention four words I just keep writing about, but this is not about them. Really. On the web site of the Israel/Palestine Mission Network (and please notice that Israel and Palestine are two words) there is another video.

The IPMN has entitled this video “Dr. Norman Finkelstein explains how the Israel/Palestine Conflict can be resolved easily.” And this one is about international law, crime and Israel and supposedly the pro- Israel, Jewish interviewer gets told off, but I will withhold my thoughts on that since that is not what my posting is about.

The actual name of the video as found all over the net is “Norman Finkelstein Interviewed on Danish TV November 13 2009.” And if you go to You-Tube you will find that every site that has this video is getting it from a posting at akawakurusa's Channel.

On this particular posting the poster offers several web sites where more information may be found. He points to This strange site offers a blog and different articles in several languages. But all of this comes from Denmark.

Now I will backtrack a bit. Several months ago I did some postings on a party in Britain called the British National Party. You can find the series here under The British National Party and NeoPagan Racism. Just scroll down to start at the beginning.

The BNP is a party that advocates for the white races only and this last year they won two seats in the European Parliament. In the past they have been anti-Semitic but generally they are an anti-immigration party. And they are now known for being very anti-Muslim.

There is now the rise of political parties and movements that are, anti-immigration, anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim. And the You-Tube site where the video, “Norman Finkelstein Interviewed on Danish TV November 13 2009” can be found is a part of the movement as is

Hopefully the readers remember when I did my series on the BNP I likened some of their ideas to the racist Asatru and Odinist groups which attempt to return to ancient pagan tribes and hold race as intrinsic to their religion. I incorporated another article, “The NeoPagan Movement and Racism” I wrote several years ago into my article on the BNP.

I noticed when exploring the You-Tube site that one of the comments left there was “Hail the nordic tribes.” This is a movement with layers and layers of racism. Some layers are blatant other layers more subtle.

So here is a word of warning to any Christian, myself included. There are some very dark movements rising in our present world. They hate the Jews and Israel, hate the Muslims, hate the immigrant, hate anyone who is not white or western. So we must all be careful from where we pull information. That is why the word of God and its authority in our lives is so important. That is why Jesus Christ the rock we stand on is ultimate.

Some people accidently started following Hitler in the 1930’s. Martin Niemöller was at first enthralled with Hitler. He felt that Hitler would bring morality back to Germany. When he learned the truth about the Nazis and Hitler he became their archenemy. He became the hated personal prisoner of Hitler. Some followed Hitler because they thought he was God’s gift to Germany. They never wavered-they followed him into hell.

The only safe place is under the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

First Sunday of Advent: a Star out of Jacob

The first Sunday of Advent:

"The words of him who hears the
words of God
and knows the knowledge of the Most High.
Who sees the vision of the
falling down, yet having his eyes uncovered.
I see him, but not now;
I behold him, but not near
A star shall come forth from Jacob,
A scepter shall rise from Israel ... (Numbers 24: 16-17a)"

From the Tyndale Old Testament Commentaries:

"That Balaam evidently senses a gap between his vision and its fulfillment is suggested by verse 17: I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not nigh. Thus, though these predictions were fulfilled for the first time, partially at any rate, some three hundred years after Balaam in the reign of David, traditional Jewish and Christian interpreters have seen another fuller realization of these prophecies in the Messiah. And this is the characteristic of many messianic passages in the Old Testament. On one level they are but expressions of hope for a good and righteous king. but on another plane, they must be looking for something more, for no real king ever came up to the ideals expressed (e.g. Ps. 72:; Is. 11, etc.). In interpreting these last words of Balaam both perspectives must be respected. Primarily they refer to royal triumphs in the period of the early monarchy, but these victories prefigure the greater conquests of Christ at his first and second advents."

"There shall a Star from Jacob come" Felix Mendelssohn

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thanksgiving joy

Thankful for Jesus:

Almost fifty-five years ago I walked down the aisle in a very small store front church, meaning to join. But when I heard the pastor ask me “Do you believe the blood of Jesus cleanses you from sin?” somehow a light bulb went off in my head and heart.

God was answering the prayer I had prayed a month before that he would truly show me what it was he wanted me to know from the pages of the Bible I was reading. As a young teenager I had been exploring all kinds of spirituality. Christian Scientist material and occult information intertwined my Bible reading. Little did I realize God was leading me home although I was traveling some strange paths.

I had already read a great deal of the Bible- I loved the word I just did not know why. After acknowledging that Jesus blood did wash my sins away- yes I did admit it was true, it was as though someone opened the pages of a familiar and loved book and told me a wonderful new story I had not noticed.

I began in Romans and continued reading about the savior, Jesus, who lived, died and rose for my salvation.

While I am so very thankful for a loving husband, six children and their wonderful spouses, 18 grandchildren , two great granddaughters, and a whole batch of amazing friends, it is Jesus Christ himself that I am the most thankful for this Thanksgiving.

Although I have often failed him, I can, in truth, say he has never failed in his care. His promises are forever.

Read Jude ....

I wasn’t going to link at all and didn’t in my last post, but evil toward another needs to be held to the light. When a lady, Kelley, explains that she was raped but kept her baby because she, as a Christian ,values life, and others insult her it is time to be responsible.

In my last posting on the Manhattan Declaration I referred to the “Pastor’s Emergency League” and posted its four vows of purpose. One of those was, “I hold myself responsible to the utmost of my ability for those who are persecuted on account of this confessional stand.”

I want to point out that if the rest of society reacts the way followers at John Shuck’s “Shuck and Jive” are toward Kelley we all need to make that vow toward one another.

Kelley has fallen into a hornets’ nest and those who write there are acting out what is truly in their heart. I can only think here of a quote by C.S. Lewis that I have used before:

“…the dullest and most uninteresting person you can talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. … There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations—these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, marry, snub, and exploit—immortal horrors or everlasting splendours.”

I once again hope that Shuck’s Presbytery takes note. And yes I did commend Kelley but my comment was of course deleted.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Answering some critics about signing the Manhattan Declaration

Reading around the internet both on web sites and comments on other’s blogs, I have found several specific complaints about the Manhattan Declaration. The document, produced by orthodox Christians of various communities of faith, including the Reformed, Catholic and Orthodox, upholds the sanctity of life, the importance of biblical marriage, and religious freedom.

These are what I see as some of the main complaints:

· Its acceptance by those reformed who place reason beneath revelation. That one was aimed at me but at others also.

· That it does not address Christology or soteriology.

· That there are too many writers and signers who are Southern Baptist.

· That too many Evangelicals are involved with it.

· That too many Catholics are involved in it. (Hey-what happened to the Orthodox and the Methodist and Presbyterians?)

· That it is badly written. (I won't even answer that)

· That the producers of the document are doing that old thing of likening our government to Nazi Germany.

· And finally a crazy one or two- like the conservatives have already written so many declarations so this one won’t count anymore than the others-or they are all just busybodies sticking their noses in other people’s business. (In other words it isn’t any of their business.)

Now I know that is not all but it’s a good start. Also some of those complaints are more important than others.

For instance the first and second complaints are very important. But first it should be said that the complainers weren’t necessarily arguing that what they believed about revelation and reason, or Christology and salvation were something they were bothered about by this document but that those who signed, like me, didn’t agree with the views they signed on to. So let’s look at that.

The writers stated, “We set forth this declaration in light of the truth that is grounded in Holy Scripture, in natural human reason (which is itself, in our view, the gift of a beneficent God), and in the very nature of the human person.”

Is that placing reason and nature on a par with God’s revelation. Can I still hold to that statement and at the same time believe that Jesus Christ as he is revealed in Holy Scripture is above reason and human experience? Can I hold to that statement and believe that reason has fallen under sin as well as human nature.

Of course, the statement does not say that the “truth” is made known by reason or the human person but is grounded in them. And given that Catholics were involved in the document that is amazing. There is room here for those reformed, like myself, who wade or swim in Barth’s theology. Remember it was Anselm, Barth’s, so to speak mentor, who wrote:

"I do not seek to understand so that I can believe,but I believe so that I may understand; and what is more,I believe that unless I do believe, I shall not understand." (But the understanding does follow)

The second complaint that the document does not address Christology or soteriology is meaningless because this is not a confession nor is any person suggesting that it be entered into a book of confessions. A Confession should, of course, first of all confess the Lord Jesus Christ. That is what a confession is about. I think that this declaration is more or less like the declaration declared by the Pastor’s Emergency League in Germany during the Nazi era. It stated:

1. I engage to execute my office as minster of the Word, holding myself bound solely to Holy Scripture and to the Confessions of the Reformation as the true expositions of Holy Scripture.

2. I engage to protest, regardless of the cost, against every violation of this confessional stand.

3. I hold myself responsible to the utmost of my ability for those who are persecuted on account of this confessional stand.

4. In making this pledge, I testify that the application of the Aryan paragraph within the Church of Christ has violated the confessional stand.[1]

And so of course my above statement about the Pastor’s Emergency League leads into another complaint. That the writers of the Declaration should not have appealed to the Confessing Church of Germany.

The closest wording I can find in the document that comes near to such an accusation is, “Eugenic notions such as the doctrine of lebensunwertes Leben (“life unworthy of life”) were first advanced in the 1920s by intellectuals in the elite salons of America and Europe. Long buried in ignominy after the horrors of the mid20th century, they have returned from the grave. The only difference is that now the doctrines of the eugenicists are dressed up in the language of ‘liberty,’ ‘autonomy,’ and ‘choice.’”

This coupled with the general push by President Obama and others to advance further the availability of abortion including partial birth abortion ties the whole scenario together. The writers are not suggesting that our government is nazified or even near it. But they are pointing out a real truth. We are heading down a road that others before us have traveled. And, in fact, it was from the United States that the doctors of Nazi Germany learned to value eugenics.[2]

The next few complaints should instead be reasons to rejoice. We are all one body. It is the Lord that makes it so. And He knows who is His and who is not. Our unity is connected to His Lordship, that is comforting. And this is also an answer to that last complaint. We all belong to a King. He rules the whole universe. His subjects are called to go where he sends them-and that might mean nosing into business that someone thinks is theirs when it actually belongs to a King. The King.

Oh and it doesn’t matter if the Declaration falls by the wayside what matters is faithfulness.

[1] The Aryan paragraph was a statement saying that any non-Aryan (Jewish person) could not be a member of the Church.
[2] See Christine Rosen, Preaching Eugenics: Religious Leaders and the American Eugenics Movement, Oxford University Press 2004, and Robert Jay Lifton, The Nazi Doctors: Medical Killing and the Psychology of Genocide, Basic Books 1986 paper edition 2000.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Manhattan Declaration: Having done all stand

I have placed at the top of my links list The Manhattan Declaration. This is a declaration written by Robert George, Professor, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence, Princeton University, Timothy George, Professor, Beeson Divinity School, Samford University and Chuck Colson founder of, The Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview (Lansdowne, Va.).

Its original signers include:
Joseph Bottum, Editor of First Things (New York); Most Rev. Robert Wm. Duncan, Archbishop and Primate, Anglican Church in North America (Ambridge, Pa. ); Carmen Fowler, President and Executive Editor, Presbyterian Lay Committee (Lenoir, N.C.); Rev. Tim Keller Senior Pastor, Redeemer Presbyterian Church (New York); Dr. Peter Kreeft Professor of Philosophy, Boston College (Mass.) and at the Kings College (N.Y.); and Dr. Tom Oden, Theologian, United Methodist Minister; Professor, Drew University (Madison, N.J.). This includes just a few.

The document includes statements on life issues, marriage and religious freedom. I have signed it and encourage my readers who agree with its statements to also sign. It is a very important document.

It can be read here: Download The Manhattan Declaration

Living (dying) for Jesus

Several weeks ago I started a review of a Horizons magazine by explaining why I did not review an earlier edition.(1) I wrote:

“Security in the Midst of Violence,” was a very good edition. I started a review of the articles making a comparison between some of the articles and Fox’s Book of Martyrs. Several of the stories were about Christians under persecution and how they lived through the ordeal. They all caught my attention, including one about a pastor and his family fleeing from Iraq and the violence they experienced because of their Christian faith.

I had about two pages written and then looked at some of the resource material offered. An inset beneath the Iraqi article pointed to and Most of the material I found on those two sites was about dialogue between Muslims and Christians and the problems and issues between the Israelis and Palestinians. And of course on that last item it was all pro-Palestinian. But there was nothing about the persecution of Christians by radical Islam.

Something inside of me stopped. I simply could not go farther despite a reasonably good issue. The contradiction was just too blaring. I thought of recommending such non-Presbyterian organizations as The Voice of the Martyrs. But my most basic thought was that Presbyterians in the PC(U.S.A.) have nothing to offer those who are facing persecution from radical Islam.”

Likewise, this posting is about living, which entails dying, for Christ. It was Dietrich Bonheoffer who said “when Christ calls a man he bids him come and die.”

Reading about the martyr Martin Burnham I discovered that of the 70 million Christian martyrs that have existed since the time of Christ, 60 million lived (died) in the twentieth century. Here is an article about Garcia Burnham who with her husband was held captive by Abu Sayyaf, a group in the Philippines. who are linked to Al Qaeda.

It is entitled “The Believers” and written by Eliza Griswold and, no surprise, found at a Catholic site, Christian Catholic Resource center.

The article begins:

“Gracia Burnham needed a backpack. Months earlier, she and her husband, Martin, had been kidnapped and dragged into the jungles of the Philippines by members of the Al Qaeda-linked Abu Sayyaf, or "Bearer of the Sword," and they had nothing in which to carry their few belongings. Until, that is, one morning when one of their kidnappers was shot and killed in the midst of a blundered rescue effort by the Filipino army. As the other militants divvied up the dead man's belongings, Gracia snatched his backpack, and she and Martin shoved in their possessions—a batik sheet, some underwear, a shared toothbrush. Gracia and Martin, both evangelical missionaries, were nearly starving: The kidnappers had kept them unfed and on the move. At various times, they had watched a male hostage led off to be beheaded or several women taken to be raped. "Abu Sayyaf thought of themselves as pious and holy," Burnham told me recently. "All this lofty chivalry crumbled before our eyes. Anything they wanted or desired, all they had to say was, 'This is jihad and the rules don't apply.'"

Garcia recounts that fleeing with her husband and the Abu Sayyaf captors, from an attack, she forgot the backpack. The author of the article goes on in finer detail:

“During months of hunger, fear, sleeping on the mosquito-infested ground, and hiking for hours seemingly in circles, Gracia's faith occasionally failed her. "The worst part was seeing who I really was," she said. She coveted food sent into the jungle for them, which Abu Sayyaf refused to share. She tired of praying to "a God who sometimes seemed to have forgotten us." She would say to Martin, "You know, scripture says these words: If you will ask anything in my name, I will do it.' In my situation, that verse is not true, so why is that in there?" But Martin encouraged her. "You believe it all, or you don't believe it at all," he told her gently.”

The article covers more than the Burnham’s story. And it is worthwhile reading. The reality of our time as American Christians in history sometimes seems, well, like a bed of roses. Perhaps we should take deeper notice of our times which are His times.

1. Horizons is the magazine of the Presbyterian Women of the PCUSA

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Dr. Tawfik Hamid, a former radical Muslim who now teaches the reform of Islam

Over thirty years ago I experienced a young Egyptian man in my home ranting against the Jewish people and the State of Israel. He was an overnight guest, I had fed him dinner and breakfast, and yet he stood in my kitchen telling me he would like to line the Israelis up and shoot all of them. He would later kidnap his young son taking him to Egypt as a means of forcing his estranged American wife to come to him. He took away her official papers and held her against her will in Egypt. She had one more son, and then finally on a return trip to the United States she was able to secure her and her son's freedom.

I do not know what happened to him but I recently saw a story about an Egyptian Islamic man who overcame his radical bent and now is promoting a moderate Islam. He is attempting to reform Islam. And he has some good things to say about Israel.

On his web site Dr. Tawfik Hamid, who is Muslim, shows true integrity. The biography on his first page begins:

“Dr. Tawfik Hamid (aka Tarek Abdelhamid), is an Islamic thinker and reformer, and one time Islamic extremist from Egypt. He was a member of a terrorist Islamic organization JI with Dr. Ayman Al-Zawaherri who became later on the second in command of Al-Qaeda. Some twenty-five years ago, he recognized the threat of Radical Islam and the need for a reformation based upon modern peaceful interpretations of classical Islamic core texts.”

There are several interesting areas on this site, including
a test to tell if someone or an organization is radical. Also there are several videos including two videos of Hamid talking to the European Parliament about Hamas.

On YouTube there is a video of his testimony just recently placed there:

It is gone! Up-Date

Praise the Lord, the video has been removed. And thank you to whoever was involved in removing it.

Up-Date- The Israel/Presbyterian Mission Network have now placed a statement on their site explaining why they removed the video. They write:

"Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
We have removed the video “I am Israel” as it was not the message we wanted to send about peacemaking between Israelis and Palestinians. We regret posting it in the first place as its message was not one of reconciliation. The comments that were posted about it confirmed that it was offensive to our members as well as other readers. We regret this mistake."

They should be thanked for removing it.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

An exchange of e-mails concerning the video, "I Am Israel" Up-Date

Yesterday, November the 16th, out of concern, I wrote an e-mail to Dr. Hunter Farrell, the Director of World Missions for the PCUSA. I expressed my concern over the video “I Am Israel” placed on the Israel/Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) web site.

As I have explained it is a video made by a radical Muslim and is full of the kind of anti-Semitic lies perpetrated among radical anti-Semitic groups. It includes such lies as:

"I am Israel. I have the power to control American policy. My American-Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) can make or break any politician of its choosing, and as you see, they all compete to please me. All the forces of the world are powerless against me, including the United Nations as I have the American veto to block any condemnation of my war crimes. As Sharon so eloquently phrased it, 'We control America.' "

Dr. Farrell graciously e-mailed me this morning, the 17th, early, stating that he was in Mexico and had “only intermittent access to Internet.” He stated that he was forwarding my concern on to Victor Makari. Makari, who is the coordinator for the Middle East Mission, was also sent the e-mail.

This evening after seven, I received this e-mail from Makari:

“The Rev. Dr. Hunter Farrell has forwarded to me your communication with him about the Israel/Palestine Mission Network, and asked that I reply on his behalf. As I am just getting ready to go out of town for a week's vacation before the long Thanksgiving weekend, actually to visit my aging father who is 94 in a nursing home, I wanted simply to acknowledge receiving your letter for now. I would ask you the favor of allowing me to reply after my return in the first part of December. By then I will have had an opportunity to read your posting thoughtfully and to send you a considered reply. I believe you deserve an answer that is not sent in haste, late in the evening.

Thank you for your understanding. I will write you again.”

I have, of course responded, suggesting that action on this issue needs to be addressed now.

Perhaps Makari does not realize how troubling is the message of “I Am Israel.” But I know that it should not be allowed to remain on the web site of the IPMN as it is an insult to all Jewish people and to all faithful Presbyterians.

Up-Date: I have received further communication this morning the 18th. This time from the Rev. Jay Rock the Coordinator of the Office of Interfaith Relations:

Here is his e-mail:

Dear Ms Larson,

It is not clear to me whether you are concerned about the "Steadfast Hope" video, or about the video "I am Israel", which is posted on the Israel-Palestine Mission network's blog.

This network is made up of Presbyterians, but is not an entity of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). It is an independent group. It has its own officers and makes its own decisions (such as the recent decision to remove the link to an article by a source related to Hezbollah). By its own description, it “works in close cooperation” with offices of the PC(USA), but is not an extension of any one of them. In fact, those of us at the PCUSA Church Center usually learn about the efforts of the Network after they are done, or underway.

As you know well, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voices its official policy and opinion in a limited number of ways. It is at our General Assemblies that the church seeks God’s guidance on the variety of issues of the day and formally adopts policies and stances regarding them. The General Assembly alone determines the positions of the church. Based on these policies, and often directed by them, the Stated Clerk of the General Assembly and a few other staff may also speak for the church in limited ways. Other Presbyterians who speak out do so on the basis of their own conscience and, we hope, guided by the church’s discernment.

Since the network makes its own decisions about what it posts on its website, and what it publishes, please be in touch with them directly about your concerns. I have pasted in the information from their website to make it easier for you to communicate with them.
Steering Committee: [I have not added the list to this posting]

Yours in Christ's service,

Jay T. Rock
Coordinator for Interfaith Relations
Presbyterian Church (USA)
100 Witherspoon Street
Louisville, KY 40202
T: 502-569-5289
F: 502-569-8039
C: 502-802-0019

Here is my answer:

Dear Rev. Rock,

Although I have written a great deal on the booklet Steadfast Hope, it is the video “I Am Israel” I am writing about. Perhaps you have not watched it, as the Coordinator for Interfaith Relations I believe you should. While I am not sure why you are the person who is responding to my complaint, I will be happy to clarify my reasoning for appealing, in the first place, to the Director of Missions, Hunter Farrell.

Under the subtitle “Who We Are,” the IPMN states that they were “Established by action of the 2004 General Assembly, the Israel/Palestine Mission Network encourages congregations and presbytery mission committees, task groups and other entities toward specific mission goals that will create currents of wider and deeper involvement with Israel/Palestine.”

Further, they state: “This network works in close cooperation with ecumenical partners and with the Office for the Middle East, the Presbyterian Peacemaking Program, the Presbyterian Washington Office, the Presbyterian UN Office and with other appropriate entities of the General Assembly and General Assembly Council.”

I believe that if IPMN was established by the General Assembly and works in relationship with all of these other PCUSA organizations including the Office for the Middle East and the Washington and UN offices they must in some way be accountable to those offices. We are a connectional Church. What one part of the body does effects all. What the IPMN does has connectional consequences on all of those offices. And it has consequences for all members of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

They film I am protesting insists that Israel has power over the whole world and over our media. It was made by a militant Muslim. Please read his comment on my blog. This is propaganda coming straight out of the years before World War II. Is this really what all of those Presbyterian Offices listed above want to say to the Jewish people of the United States or even the Jewish people of Israel?

Please do not insist that I go back to the organization that posted the film. The only thing they have written to me is “Thanks for your input.” Please be of some help.

In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,

Viola Larson.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Shattered on the point of anti-Semitism

The direction that some in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) are taking has become frightening. The anti-Semitic video, “I Am Israel” that the Israel/Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) placed on their site this last week is the ultimate example. I have a few more thoughts on the video and the anti-Semitism plaguing our denomination.

First I did send a letter to IPMN’s Moderator, Carol Hylkema explaining how offensive the video was. Her only reply was “Thanks for your input.” As a Presbyterian organization IPMN has proven to be anti-Semitic at its core.

Second one of the commenters, Dexter Van Zile, on my first posting pointed out that there is proof that the statement attributed to Ariel Sharon on the video is fraudulent. He links to a page where he has proven that it is false. That is: Syndicated Columnist Georgie Anne Geyer Uses Fabricated Sharon Quote.

Third, if you are interested in knowing how fraudulent the video’s insistence that Israel has power over the world and the United States media is, just check back to World War II and all the Nazi lies, they are the exact same lies radical Muslims and the IPMN are telling in this video. Every time I watch the video I want to gag.

May I recommend Last Days in Babylon: the History of a Family, the Story of a Nation by Marina Benjamin and Nazi Propaganda for the Arab World by Jeffrey Herf.

I have read the first book which is about the last years of the Jewish community in Iraq before they were threatened, harassed and pushed out of that nation because of the birth of Israel. The author is the granddaughter of one of those who went into exile. The second book I own, but I have not gotten to it yet accept for a skim read. It does have one recommendation that several of my readers will be very interested in. That is a recommendation by Jewish historian, Benny Morris. He writes:

“Professor Herf’s book is a thorough and important description of Nazi propaganda to the Arab world during World War II, and quite accurately and ominously highlights the parallels between Nazi anti-Semitic tenets and Islamist anti-Semitism.”

Both of those books describe how the Grand Mufti Haj Amin Husseini became an advocate for Hitler and was attempting to bring about the final solution to the Jews in the Middle East. Some of those awful stories such as the lie that the Jews control the world came out of that period. Now they are still used by radical Muslims and are showing up on a Presbyterian web site.

A good friend recently wrote “Tonight I explained to my children that we are living in a time very much like the days of Hitler's rise to power [think Iran] and his attempted destruction of the Jewish people. I told them to not fear, to plan on getting married and having children, and to know that their children will be used of the Most High to continue in the battle that has engaged us. Live well--we only get to do this once.”

Most do not know or have forgotten that there was a time before the Holocaust when some people in the United States were either ambivalent to or even for Hitler and the Nazi state of Germany. The friend I quoted above is right.

At this moment we as a denomination have so much to lose. Our integrity, our goodness, our hope, will all be shattered on the anti-Semitism among us. We will take away with one hand what God is trying to put into the other, the righteousness and holiness of God. If we spit on his ancient people we will eventually spit on God.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Israel/Palestine Mission Network posts a film put together by those espousing radical Islamic views of Israel. UP-date

The Israel/Palestine Mission Network has posted a video on their site entitled “I Am Israel.” Ever hopeful, I thought it would perhaps have something good to say about Israel.

The person who placed the video there writes, “The following video entitled I Am Israel is a powerful and tragically beautiful presentation of the triumphs of Israel as it emerged to become a powerful Middle Eastern state in the modern world of today; an emergence of a people from the tragedy of World War II.”

It is not that at all. Instead the words which are vile were written by Hashem Said who is evidently very radical. He is a member of Hayaat which is supposedly a Washington University student organization for Palestinian human rights.

The video was put together by Jihane Al Quds. Whoever this person is they have a blog profile that lists only the title of their film, “
I Am Israel,” with the words to the film and a blog without postings entitled Tulkarem. He also has the You-Tube site that IPMN is linked to where he says he lives in the United States.

The words are bad by themselves but placed over the images of the film they are sheer propaganda.

The words, “I came to a land without a people for a people without a land. Those people who happened to be here, had no right to be here, and my people showed them they had to leave or die, razing 480 Palestinian villages to the ground, erasing their history,” leaves out so much while adding lies.

All of this is putting words into the mouths of those the radical Muslims hate. Words that they did not say. The Israelis did not show them that they had “to leave or die”-instead they fought for their own survival as many Arab nations attacked them.

The words, “carved in 1948 out of 78% of the land of Palestine, dispossessing its inhabitants and replacing them with Jews from Europe and other parts of the world,” are untrue.

As Mitchell G. Bard puts it in his book, Myths and Facts: A Guide To the Arab-Israeli Conflict:

“Nearly 80 percent of what was the historic land of Palestine and the Jewish National Home, as defined by the League of Nations, was severed by the British in 1922 and allocated to what became Transjordan. Jewish settlement there was barred. The UN partitioned the remaining 20 percent of Palestine into two states. With Jordan’s annexation the West Bank in 1950, Arabs controlled approximately 80 percent of the territory of the Mandate, while the Jewish State held a bare 17.5 percent (Gaza, occupied by Egypt, was the remainder.)”

Is it even necessary to refute such words as “I have the power to control American policy. My American Israel Public Affairs Committee can make or break any politician of its choosing, and as you see, they all compete to please me. All the forces of the world are powerless against me, including the UN as I have the American veto to block any condemnation of my war crimes. As Sharon so eloquently phrased it, We control America.”

That is a truly anti-Semitic statement suggesting that Israel controls the world.

And this, “I influence American mainstream media too, and you will always find the news tailored to my favor. I have invested millions of dollars into PR representation, and CNN, New York Times, and others have been doing an excellent job of promoting my propaganda. Look at other international news sources and you will see the difference,” should remind the reader of Henry Ford’s The International Jew, an anti-Semitic diatribe written in praise of Hitler's Germany.

The lies about the 1948 War fought by Israel against her Arab neighbors who attacked her, and the total disregard for Israel’s need to defend herself against those terrorist groups, Hamas and Hezbollah, who believe Israel has no right to exist, is captured in this film.

The fact that the Israel/Palestine Mission Network continues on unabated by the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. is damaging to the souls of this denomination. I believe we have lost our will and integrity. May God help us.


The person who made this video has visited my comment section. He has complained that I lied because I put up the IPMN introduction to his video.

He thought I was saying he wrote that introduction. Which was "The following video entitled I Am Israel is a powerful and tragically beautiful presentation of the triumphs of Israel as it emerged to become a powerful Middle Eastern state in the modern world of today; an emergence of a people from the tragedy of World War II. But it is also a powerful presentation of the tragedy of the Palestinian people on whose land powerful Israel now resides. It reminds us of the tragedy of two people, one living in Europe before the founding of Israel and the other in Palestine."

The maker of the video understands that he was saying nothing good about Israel. Was the IPMN trying to fool the public with that lead in that made even the video maker mad?!

Is an overture for a one state solution looming on the horizon?

The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has for several years advocated for a two state solution for Israel and Palestine. Just the other day, I was telling someone, I would not be surprised if at least one if not several overtures were sent to 219th General Assembly calling for a one state solution. By that I mean a state which includes all the Palestinians as well as the people of Israel. This would of course destroy the State of Israel as a Jewish nation forever.

I conjectured that this might happen because lately I have noticed many articles on web sites, which various Presbyterian organizations link to, that advocate for a one state solution.

Now I find that Ali Abunimah co-founder of the Electronic Intifada a Palestine news site recommended in Steadfast Hope, a booklet published by the Israel/Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), has a book recommending just that, "
One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Palestinian-Israeli Impasse."

I also see that Abunimah has been a speaker at a Presbyterian Church just this year, First Presbyterian Church of Palo Alto, hosted the
Peninsula Peace and Justice Center, featuring Abunimah.

Abunimah insists that a Jewish state could only be a racist apartheid state. He states “When we get to the point where the mantra ‘Jewish State’ no matter what the cost ... it’s always wrong. He then speaks of what he and others call the ethnic cleansing that happened in 1948, and goes on to repeat that there is no way to have a Jewish State without ethnic cleansing.

I believe those Presbyterians who are pro Israel need to understand that there is a move among activist to see Israel as racist and undemocratic unless she gives up her real meaning. That is, they want Israel to give up her sole purpose, which is a place of safety for the persecuted Jewish people.

I do not believe we understand how close we are to another massive pogrom aimed not just at a village in Eastern Europe but at a whole nation.

Before World War II many nations and leaders talked and wrote about what was called the ‘Jewish problem’ and how to solve it. Some Jewish people tried to assimilate into whatever country was their homeland but that was never to be a safe decision. Many times when nations faced a crisis the Jewish people became the scapegoat.

Of course Hitler and the Nazi’s solution were gas chambers, while the Zionist solution was a homeland for the Jewish people. And, indeed, that appears to be the solution of the sovereign Lord of history.

Perhaps this is an apologetic to soon. I hope so!

But I believe the idea of wiping out Israel as a Jewish State by turning her into a state where the Jewish people are a minority among her enemies is not different then pogroms or gas chambers and will lead to another Holocaust.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Blogs, friends, granddaughters and daughters

I have a Session retreat to go to starting tomorrow so I am leaving everyone some great blogs to explore.

The first one is a new blog by my granddaughter Melissa. She is an artist and a writer so you will find this an extremely interesting blog. The name of her new blog is a pun-well I see it as a pun anyway. It is
The Sacramentalist. The pun is that Melissa lives in Sacramento and she loves the high liturgy of the Church. She and her husband attend a Lutheran (Missouri Synod) Church.

You will find many wonderful art works there, as well as great writing. I, in particular, like her picture and confession, under, "
Confession # 1" She writes that she needs to love people more.

Another blog, and it is new, that I enjoy is
View From the Hood. Marita Styrsky is a faithful, insightful and witty Christian. She lives not far from my home in what is considered by some, well, a hoodish type of neighborhood. But it can't really be that because she lives there.

Marita is married to Victor who is the Eastern States Director of Christians United for Israel. (Gasp!) They are good friends. Marita's last posting is about her experiences with her Muslim neighbors,
"Why can't I just love people?" I think I have a theme going here.

Rather then ending this with another blog I want to post some music for my three beautiful daughters, Penny, Jenny and Andrea, who are all experiencing some hard times mixed in with all of God's blessings.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Free in Christ

It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery." (Galatians 5:1)

I just couldn't resist, I'm directing this toward my good friend
Bayou Christian (Bill Crawford) who lives for Christ and lives to fish.

The video is put together by
Beanscot, (I do not know who she is but she does a wonderful job of placing pictures and music together).

Christian students facing an oppressive atmosphere at Bowdoin College because of their views on homosexuality

Professor A. J. Robert Gagnon, who had asked for prayer as he was giving a presentation on homosexuality at Bowdoin College near Portland, Maine, on Friday Oct. 30, has now posted information about both his presentation and the extreme opposition that both he and Intervarsity experienced.

He begins his report with these words:

"My speaking engagement at Bowdoin College near Portland, Maine, on Friday Oct. 30 presented me with a glimpse into the oppressive future of homosexualist ascendancy. The talk was attended by about 150 persons, including a large contingent of “GLBT”[1] students and staff who, I heard from other students, had been planning how they might derail my presentation. During the Q&A time after my presentation the Director of Student Life, a homosexualist activist named Allen DeLong, called me “a wolf in sheep’s clothing” and made an implicit threat to the Intervarsity staff responsible for bringing me there.

Before I go into the details, first a little background information. I was invited by the Intervarsity chapter at Bowdoin to give a presentation on the Bible and homosexual practice primarily intended for Bowdoin’s Christian fellowship group but also open to the whole campus. There were pleasant features about Bowdoin College. I found the Bowdoin campus to be aesthetically pleasing. Another nice thing about Bowdoin is the presence of two outstanding Intervarsity staff persons, Robert and Sim-Kuen Chan Gregory, who have committed their lives to helping the Bowdoin Christian Fellowship (BCF) over the last five years. They have done so at considerable financial cost and sacrifice to themselves.

Yet, if you are thinking of sending your child to Bowdoin, consider this: Bowdoin suffers from a major inhibitor of free speech. Let’s just say that if you want to go to a college where homosexualist ideology reigns supreme at the highest levels, a place where you will be belittled as a homophobic bigot if you express your conviction that homosexual practice is wrong, then Bowdoin is the place for you. Bowdoin has not only the usual “Gay and Lesbian Studies” program but also a special “Resource Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity,” just recently renamed from the more descriptive “Queer-Trans Resource Center.” The Center has its own building and full-time director.

If you go to Bowdoin’s website, click on “Campus Life,” and scroll halfway down, you will see a prominent reference to this Center that takes you to “
Bowdoin Queer Web.” Here one finds prominently displayed a statement from the Bowdoin Student Handbook that forbids “discrimination or harassment of others because of … sexual orientation” and requires “respect for the differences of all.” From what I can gather from my own observations, this statement means: The “GLBT” community can slander at will anybody who declines to pay homage to the homosexualist agenda, while all others have to shut up about that agenda or face dire consequences. I have seen firsthand the very real fear and intimidation that students experience as regards expressing any criticism of homosexual behavior.

You can link from the “Bowdoin Queer Web” not only to the “Sexual Diversity” resource center, but also to the “Bowdoin Queer-Straight Alliance” and to “
Faculty-Staff Advocates.” The latter includes the Director of Student Life, Allen DeLong (mentioned above), who (the site declares) also “holds a monthly dinner conversation for Men who Date Men”; the Director for Career Planning for all students; and, of course, the Director of the “Queer-Trans” Resource Center. In short, homosexualist activists at Bowdoin control all student life activities and all use of career planning resources. "

To read the whole report go here,
Back to the Oppressive Future:
Homosexualist Attempts at Suppressing Rational Debate at Bowdoin College and the Maine “Gay Marriage” Referendum.

Monday, November 2, 2009

The great speckled bird of Jeremiah

Writing, several days ago about living in the country and country music, I was reminded of a song my father liked, “The Great Speckled Bird.” That is a Christian song and I found a great recording by Kitty Wells. But my curiosity was sparked by the words which included a reference to a Great Speckled Bird in the Bible. The reference is in Jeremiah 12:9.

“Is my inheritance like a speckled bird of prey to me? Are the birds of prey against her on every side? Go gather all the beasts of the field, bring them to devour!”

The author of the song sees the verse as the people of God in faithfulness and is dispensational in its outlook. The Church will fly away into the arms of Jesus until the tribulation is over. "In the presence of all her despisers/With a song never uttered before/She will rise and be gone in a moment/Till the great tribulation is o'er."

But in all of this, the text is taken out of context and misused.

It is true this verse is about the people of God, Israel, and can be applied to the Church that is birthed out of Israel. But one must understand Israel in the context of the whole chapter in order to understand the verse and how it might be applied to the Church. It is a tragic story, but it ends beautifully. Its promise is unique.

But before looking at the context I want to say something about the difference between the song’s dispensational views of safety and the Reformed view.

In the song the Church is being attacked by her neighbors but is lifted, in their presence, to safety and kept from the “great” tribulation. But not so the Reformed teaching. The Church was born in tribulation, and still endures the tribulation, not in all places but in some places all the time. From Nero to Hitler, from Domitian to Idi Amin, from North Korea to radical Islam the anti-Christs keep appearing and being destroyed by the will of God. And yes, there will undoubtedly be a final anti-Christ destroyed by Christ’s glorious return.

But not out of the tribulation is there safety, rather in the midst of common life and tribulation, normal workdays and dark eras the Christian finds peace, safety and comfort in the arms Jesus Christ. His people are united to him, nourished by him, kept faithful by him.

And here, speaking of faithfulness, is the better understanding of the great speckled bird. As Calvin notes, The bird is a bird of prey, a wild bird that is not unlike the lion in an earlier verse.

“My inheritance has become to me like a lion in the forest; she has roared against me; therefore I have come to hate her.” (8) God calls for the enemies of his people and Israel goes into exile.

But why? Because she has copied the sins of her neighbors, she worships the Baals and enters into their sexual rites and she kills her children before false gods. But there is a promise here and interestingly it is focused on the neighbors.

The Lord is uprooting all of them because of sin. But he will restore them and if the neighboring peoples who have taught Judah to sin, to worship the Baals, will now, instead, learn the ways of the people of God they will be “built up in the midst of” his people.

This is the great reversal. The culture captured the people of God and taught them to sin. But God promises restoration not only to the children but also to a corrupt culture. Calvin points out that it isn’t Judah that changes the surrounding nations but it is God and his law. In the same way it is the work of Jesus Christ in the midst of his people that changes the surrounding culture.