I just went out to my first day of a February garden. I needed the sunshine—needed to feel the softness of the wood sorrel as I pulled it away from tiny parsley and leek plants. I picked some very ripe lemons and a few snap peas. I brought them in and sat down here at my computer to complain—I’m not sure who I'm complaining to—God, The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), no one in particular.
It's just that I never thought for a moment that I would belong to an organization that would so badly attack the people who gave us our holy book, the Bible. Well, of course, it is God's book, his word, but he called and used the Jewish people to write the Hebrew part of our Holy Scriptures. And God used Jewish converts to our Lord Jesus Christ to write the New Testament.
Zionism, it has been a safety net for the Jewish people. It matters not whether it is cultural Zionism or political Zionism: it is the shell around the fruit of their culture and the work of their political groanings. I say groanings because like all new democracies they are still in the process of working out the process of liberty and equality. But to see my denomination stand behind a document, Zionism Unsettled, that calls Zionism, “a system of discrimination and exclusion,” is more than I can stand.
My denomination, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), has allowed a Palestinian pastor who is suppose to be a Christian, but undoubtedly isn't, to write in one of our denominational booklets that Zionism's inspiration has been drawn “from those portions [of the Bible] that betray a narrow and exclusive concept of a tribal god.” Truly we have aligned with the German Christians of Nazi-times because this is what they believed and said. They do not care for God's word and they do not care for the Jewish people. They have insulted both. And I find myself weeping in places where I never intended to cry.
What does one do when they find themselves weeping in the middle of the aisle in, of all things, the grocery store. What does one do when they find themselves privately saying goodbye to a denomination they have been a part of for over twenty years. Oh, not goodbye in the sense of I won't be here anymore—but in the sense of, my heart is no longer here. My face is turned a different direction and it is hard to keep traveling back over the roads that have gone from rocky to granite.