Friday, March 23, 2012
Defending Jerusalem's Counsel
There is still a lot of controversy and opposition stirred over the Messianic participation at to the Christ at the Checkpoint 2012 conference in Bethlehem. I have had quite a bit of dialogue off the record with several of those Messianics who participated raising the ire of their fellow Messianic Jews and Christian Zionists friends.
Here's one thing I can say, the leaders who participated are not oblivious to the real problems in play with the CatC. Most of those who are criticizing the Messianic participation do so from a perspective of the participation being an endorsement of the radical views held by CatC speakers. But instead of endorsing those views, the Messianic and Christian Zionists who participated, some as speakers and some as attendees, went to confront the biblical evidence of Israel's election and endeavor to moderate views through dialogue.
Not one of those I have had exchanges with have shown the least bit of waffling on Israel's key role in what God's continuously unfolding plan is. That seems to be the main beef from the rest of our community, wondering how in the world can these men sit down to dialogue with people who have proposed the most radical anti-Israel views for years without it meaning the Messianics had been suckered into a compromised position?
Look, any time I see some Christian who is posing with some Palestinian terrorist or terrorist endorsing figure, big smiles plastered on their faces, embracing - it does the same thing to me that is does to you: I cringe at yet a another naive 'peacemaker' who has been suckered by taqqiyah.
This is NOT what is going on with these Israeli Messianic leaders who went to CatC - some of whom are apostolic level leaders, others at the very least are seasoned elders in the Body of Messiah with deep roots living in Israel, fighting the good fight and working in reconciliation AND defense of Israel. They have not gone soft on Israel's role in our days for the sake of a false peace/reconciliation with those who dismiss the election of Israel as valid to our faith today.
In my years learning the ways of God I have seen one thing often. That God requires that those who are following His Son are the ones who have to step up going the extra mile. Whether the ones we are sent to hear or whether they forbear, our effort to bring some back to the will of God is not exhausted until we go and speak to them, as Moses stood before Pharaoh or Jonah stood before Nineveh. Until we have completed our charge to speak to them eye-to-eye, God does not rise to overturn the ungodly intention.
Instead of coming against the efforts of these Israeli Messianic and Christian leaders to engage the anti-Israeli opposition in talks, allowing them time to make headway among those that will hear, it would be nice if we would pray for their words to penetrate and that unhealed hearts would be softened.
When Moses stood before Pharaoh, the scripture says that Pharaoh's heart was hardened. But when Jonah stood before Nineveh - a people who could not tell right from wrong - his words turned them to repent. Until this group of leaders is able to complete their mission we will not know if they have been able to impact Christian Palestinianism.
One thing is for certain, if we continue to raise opposition to their mission, we face the distinct possibility that we are fighting what God is doing. Some of us need to take that into consideration.
A post script: For many years I have voiced my expectation that it would be from within the Israeli Messianic leadership that many of the most perplexing issues of the Messianic movement would begin to be brought to resolution and leading by example would becomd the model for the entire Messianic movement. The issue of reconciliation of the Body between Christian Arabs and Messianic Jews is one of those problem areas that I saw godly movement in and frankly, I can see no other location on earth where this reconciliation can spring from. Like in the first century where the apostolic Jerusalem Council was looked to as a authoritative voice of God's will, my expectation is that that there would rise up from the ranks of the Israeli Body, those with able to lead in some of the most serious issues facing us in the Messianic movement and the Church. Don't look now, but this may be the beginning of the rise of the Jerusalem Council. God raises up whom He will from those who are willing to go at His instruction where others fear to tread.