Let There Be Peace On Earth

Eric Andersen Eric Andersen 8 Comments

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Well here it goes.  This is where I prove to a number of San Diego conservatives what some have questioned but lacked proof to substantiate – Eric Andersen is neither conservative nor Christian … or is he?

At the San Diego County Republican Christmas event we heard invocations from two members of our community. A Rabbi and Skyline Pastor Jim Garlow. Two individuals whom I respect and admire. I’m especially inspired by Garlow’s Pulpit Freedom Sunday. A courageous, biblical and constitutional exercise of religious freedom.

I applaud our party’s commitment to recognize God and to open our meetings seeking His wisdom and guidance. Indeed it is one of the primary reasons I am a Republican. Where my concern lies is with Pastor Garlow’s use of time leading up to his invocation with an exhortation that we politically align with Israel.

As a follower of Christ I believe our words and actions are only Christian to the extent they cohere with the nature and teaching of Christ. There is no favoritism in the New Covenant. If you pardon me, I would say, as did the Apostle Paul, “there is no Jew nor Gentile.” Racial distinctions among men became obsolete at the cross. Not only do I not believe such can be supported Biblically, but I am against violating the 8th Commandment and the U.S. Constitution to support it (foreign aid and wealth redistribution).

But that is only part of the reason I disagreeJudaism. I am concerned Christians are not making an important distinction between Judaism and Zionism. The state of Israel is not Judaic but Zionist. We have much in common with the former but little with the latter.

For example, Orthodox Judaism has existed for thousands of years. Zionism for one hundred. Orthodox Judaism acknowledges the Messiah. Zionists reject him. Orthodox Judaism acknowledges the Torah as essential. Zionism rejects it. Orthodox Jews walk by faith. Zionists by sight. Orthodox Jews define themselves spiritually. Zionists define themselves materially. Orthodox Jews see themselves in a covenant relationship with God. Zionists do not. Orthodox Jews rejected the founding of the nation called “Israel.” Zionists embraced it.

Why isn’t our political ethic matching our theology?
If the covenant God made with Moses was conditional why are we treating Israel as if it was not? If Christ is treating the Old Covenant with racial Israel as obsolete, why aren’t we? If Christ foretold the taking of the kingdom from Israel, why are we attempting to physically sustain it?

I found it disingenuous for Pastor Garlow’s wife to be introduced as someone other than whom she is, Rosemary Garlow. Why was she introduced by the name of her ex-husband? From what I understand she is not a descendent of Oskar Schindler and was only related via a prior marriage. This comes across as an attempt to associate that which is admirable (Schindler’s heroic action) with that which is not (the church using state (force) redistribution of property for a racial group of non-Americans. Christ only has one ethic.  He does not have one ethic for racial Israel and another for the rest of mankind.

In my opinion a conservative, a constitutional and Christian conservative, is one who “conserves” the ideals our nation was founded upon.  Property redistribution and racial favoritism are neither conservative nor Christian values.

I do not question the Pastor’s noble intent but in Christian theology intent doesn’t sanctify action. When we defend God given rights, natural rights, via peaceful means our actions can be said to be “Christian”.  When believers use the sword of the state to violate those same laws we unknowingly become instruments of dissension instead of peace. We unknowingly become proponents of big instead of limited government.

Christ, The Prince of Peace, desires that we be peacemakers. The government is only “upon his shoulders” when we submit to his ways. Much of the terror/fear we face has its genesis in departing from such. If we desire to be instruments of peace, and for the gospel to be proclaimed to all nations, I think it important that we consider submitting to his means. Ideas have consequences that may not be peaceful.

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Eric Andersen is a member of the Central Committee of the San Diego County Republican Party and is the Co-Founder of the Republican Liberty Caucus of San Diego County and im2moro.com. He is a former Rock Church Citizen of the Year.

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Comments 8

  1. Sorry I didn’t see you last night. I could do with more praying and less political commentary from those giving the invocation. We get plenty of political rhetoric from the politicians afterwards.

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    It would be helpful if we were properly taught to recognize the jurisdiction of the church from the jurisdiction of the state. Something you have demonstrated a thoughtful awareness of. Hope to see you tonight.

  3. Interesting stuff. Thanks, Eric.
    Questions:
    While many of the early Zionists were secular socialists, hasn’t that changed?
    After all, at no point of the diaspora has the Jewish desire to return to the land of their Fathers been extinguished. For many faithful, return has been a distant but deeply desired goal. Is the distinction you’ve drawn a little sharp?
    And while Paul tells that there is no Jew or Gentile, he also told Jewish believers to retain the traditions of their forebears, (Acts 21:20-24 and 1 Cor 11:2, 2 Thes 2:15.) Racial/religious distinctions may not be PC, may not harmonize well with modern sensibilities, but does that mean they’re non-existent or wrong?
    Finally, yes, the Schindler reference was cheesy.

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    “… at no point of the diaspora has the Jewish desire to return to the land of their Fathers been extinguished.”

    I imagine that may be very true but doesn’t that seek to sanctify the action of the individual based on his desire rather than Christ’s?

    The old covenant was about land. The new covenant is not.

    Israel had the land taken from them for a reason. They were wicked tenants. They violated the constitution/covenant. A bilateral and conditional one. I think the Scripture is clear – it was no longer theirs to take, God took it from them.

    Parable of the Wicked Tenants
    “What then will the owner of the vineyard do to them? He will come and destroy those tenants and give the vineyard to others.” – Luke 20:15-16

    That is not to say they cannot move there on their own account. They just aren’t allowed to encroach on the rights of those already dwelling there.

  5. Those “already there” would include, of course, have to include the Jews who never left.
    Did they or their Philistine neighbors have “rights,” in the sense that we understand that word as citizens of a sovereign nation state. No.
    In any case, though, as before under Babylon, they were (according to the Biblical account) responsible for losing their ancestral home, the promise of return was always held out.
    The vast majority of original 19th century Jewish settlers, mostly from Russia, bought the land they worked from mostly absentee Arab land owners. The original Zionists, from Herzl on, did not steal anyone’s land.
    With incredible determination and resourcefulness, they turned what had been a desert into a garden.
    It was only AFTER this had been accomplished, that hundreds of thousands of Arabs returned and demanded that the land be given to them.
    Isn’t it ironic that in a world with over twenty Muslim countries, the Jewish state Israel is the ONLY one that assures its Arab citizens full human rights?

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    “promise of return was always held out.”

    Craig – Israel was allowed to return after the Babylonian exile but I am not aware of any promise allowing their return after Christ made the Mosaic Covenant obsolete.

    “the original Zionists, from Herzl on, did not steal anyone’s land.”

    I would disagree. While the early intentions of Zionism may have been more friendly I believe that statement is categorically incorrect. Blood Brothers by Elias Chacour, a Christian Palestinian, former Bishop of Jerusalem in the Melkite Church in Israel, gives a first hand account of the Israel Army forcing his mother and father, brother and sisters off their land and not being permitted to return. See page 53.

    Your comments about Kibbutz farmers reclaiming land is true and their peaceful efforts are to be commended.

    I also agree with you on the failure of neighboring Arab nations to accept 800,000 Palestinian refugees. That being said, their sin isn’t as great as the one who took his neighbor’s property by force. If I am correct, throughout the 1930s, while Hitler’s pogroms thrived, no major western nation increased it’s quota of Jewish immigrants.

  7. By the time Israel had a standing army, the era of early Zionism was over.
    And, needless to say, Jews, whether Zionists or not, do not take their cues from Christian revelation or prophecy.
    But, sticking with history makes this conflict easy to understand. The following video touches on the highlights.
    For a fuller treatment, see Martin Gilbert’s, Israel A History.

    https://youtu.be/IG1C7gorfQA

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