By Melanie Phillips, November 10, 2016

 

It's been an average kind of week for Jews in Britain. Here are a few recent items which you may have read in the Jewish Chronicle.

A speaker at London's School of Oriental and African Studies claimed that Zionists were mobilising subversive power to "outlaw" criticism of their activities, "Zionism was a parallel movement to Nazism" and Zionists "conspired to try and increase antisemitism in order to force Jews to Palestine".

Sheffield Hallam University in South Yorkshire was ordered to compensate a disabled Jewish student for failing to address his complaints about rampant Jew-hatred and Israel-bashing on campus.

He had complained about social media posts written by Sheffield's Palestine Society which included the blood libel that Israel harvests the organs of Palestinians, compared Bethlehem to the Warsaw Ghetto and referred to Zionists as Nazi criminals.

A Facebook group for UK Independence Party supporters suggested there was a Jewish conspiracy behind last week's High Court ruling against the Government over leaving the EU.

Our purpose is to help you on your journey, particularly if it's a sincere journey into the heart of God and His ways. On our website we are concerned with five main areas; God, Jesus, the Bible, Israel and the Church. To get you started, if you are looking for reading matter to take you deeper, here are some resources that should help.

LET'S RECLAIM CHRISTMAS
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For many, the original Christian meaning of Christmas has been lost among the tinsel, revelry and mammon overkill. What still remains can be tinged by nostalgic ritual or even over-familiarity. Where is the birth of our Messiah among this? Where is the clear image of the miracle of the Incarnation? Is there a way to reclaim the core events and understanding among the noise that surrounds it? Or should we just wipe our hands of it and concede defeat to our secular society, which has hijacked it and converted it into a festival of over-indulgence?

by Hillel Fendel

Close to 50 members of Amish Christian communities in the U.S.and Switzerland visited Israel last week for one reason: To apologize to the Jewish People.

The Ministry of Tourism announced that Bishop Ben Girod, of the Amish community in Idaho, led the delegation in submitting an official apology for having rejected Israel and the Jews.

Dear Prime Minister, It was sickening to see that your government last week voted for the declaration of diplomatic war against Israel embodied in resolution 2334 passed by the UN Security Council. Bad enough that Britain didn’t use its position as a permanent SC member to vote against this vicious resolution and thereby stop it in its tracks. Worse, far worse was that your government voted for it. In doing so, Britain signed up to propositions that repudiate law, justice and truth. Now reports have surfaced that, yet more appallingly, Britain was actually instrumental in getting 2334 passed by helping draft the resolution and then stiffening New Zealand’s resolve in proposing it. I don’t know whether that is correct. I suspect it may well be. I think, nevertheless, that you spoke from the heart the other week when you told the Conservative Friends of Israel of your admiration for Israel as a “remarkable country” and a “beacon of tolerance” and your warm feelings towards the Jewish people. 

The significance in Gerald's case was not that he'd been an absent friend. Quite the reverse, really, as we'd been meeting at the same coffee bar in Leicester Square every Thursday fortnight for years now. Over the years Gerald had stubbornly refused all invitations at this time of year. It wasn't that he was purposely being rude, it was that, although, physically, he was as Jewish as chopped liver, Gerald was a confirmed atheist.

In the last few decades, some Christian theologians and preachers have insisted that the people and land of Israel are not significant for either the New Testament or the Church.

Antisemitism is an insidious evil. The habits of antisemitism have been burrowing into European and British culture for as long as we can remember. In England, during the late mediaeval period, the Jewish community faced constant persecution: Shylock, the great villain of the Merchant of Venice, was a cliché of his time. By the time Cromwell reopened England to Jewish settlement under the Commonwealth in the 1650s, antisemitism had mutated within common parlance and culture.

It is a shameful truth that, through its theological teachings, the church, which should have offered an antidote, compounded the spread of this virus. The fact that antisemitism has infected the body of the Church is something of which we as Christians must be deeply repentant. We live with the consequences of our history of denial and complicity.

RABBI CRAWFORD answers ...

Run in the other direction- as fast as a gazelle! Anyone who calls himself/herself a prophet is a self proclaimed liar. In the TaNaK, the prophets were killed, sawed in half etc. If they were spewing stuff about their prophetic gifts and were about to be sawed in two- they would recant- most of these people do not have any such gifts. I have heard of a few who dream dreams which in the near future, were on target- but those people never ran around claiming to be prophets that I know of.

RABBI GUTMANN answers ...

By now, most of us are familiar with the concept of “social justice warriors” – left-wing liberals who support trendy politics such as transgender LGBTI issues, /wealth distribution, Marxist economics, identity politics, multiculturalism, “progressive” values, anti-Israelism, anti-Westernism, and support for “anti-imperialist” regimes in places like Syria and Iran. Now social justice warriors have found their prayerful equivalents in the “Red Letter Christians” movement – ostensibly spearheaded by the triumvirate of Shane Claiborne, Brian McLaren and Tony Campolo, who also familiar politicised voices in the Emerging Church movement.

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