op-ed

Time For Liberal Jews To Stop The Christianophobia

Writing for Salon.com, Matthew Rozsa cautions: Jews would be foolish to trust Mike Pence or the Christian Right (Dec. 2, 2017) because he says, their reasons for claiming to love Israel are “deeply creepy.”

Rozsa’s rationale for branding an entire group of people as untrustworthy includes Pence’s repeated use of the term “hand of heaven.” The vice president used the term most recently at the Queens Museum, the site of the United Nations’ vote, which established Israel as a sovereign state on November 29, 1947.

Rozsa hears dog whistles of sinister intent in the phrase “hand of heaven” and he invokes the old saw that the only reason Christians support Israel is because they believe “end times” will require we Jews to go back to Israel and either convert to Christianity or perish.

In doing so, the Salon writer ignores an enormous number of Christians who have rejected Replacement Theology that proclaimed the end of God’s covenant with the Jewish people and replaced it with a new covenant with Christians. Rather, those Christians embrace the idea that they are “grafted in” to God’s covenant with the Jews. They also accept the Jews as the “chosen people,” a concept that is often uncomfortable to Jews themselves.

I have rarely spoken to two Christians who agree on whether Jews must still accept Jesus as divine or go to hell. In this regard, Christians resemble Jews, as we are fond of saying that there are always “two Jews, three opinions.” Like many liberal Jews, Rozsa warns Jews not to trust those evil Christians because they have impure motives.

Even if Christians do believe Jews must be converted, they aren’t trying to do so at the point of a sword. There is no evidence of forced Christian conversion today. But so hateful are liberals toward Christians that they imagine it anyway. There is, however, another religion that advocates conversion or death — and, yes, it’s happening today, all over the world.

As for the phrase “hand of heaven,” I scoured the Internet and asked my Christian friends exactly what this is about. Is it a sinister, secret doctrine? This time, the Christians I know didn’t resemble Jews at all. They all agreed that it is a reference to their common belief that God’s hand is in everyday lives and human events.

But guess what? Jews are familiar with the phrase as well. I consulted an Orthodox Rabbi from Chabad who recognized it immediately. In Hebrew, “Hashgochoh Protis” or “Hashgaha Peratit” literally means the divine supervision of the individual or Divine providence. This supervision is discussed throughout Rabbinic literature and by classical Jewish philosophers.

The idea that the events and concerns of mankind are directed by God is hardly out of the mainstream of religious thought. Yet, to Rozsa, we should be suspicious that Christians have such a notion.

Rosza goes on to say that it’s good news according to a 2012 Jewish Values Survey, that Jews hold Mormons and Muslims in higher regard than they do the Christian right. Rosza is also glad that, although 82 percent of white evangelicals believe that God gave Israel to the Jewish people, only 40 percent of Jewish Americans share that view.

Apparently, he thinks it is terrible for Jews to believe that God gave Israel to the Jewish people. Perhaps that’s why he and so many liberal Jews aren’t bothered by the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement or the growing, vicious anti-Israel and anti-Jewish sentiments residing on the Left.

I encourage Mr. Rosza to extend some of that famed, liberal “tolerance” to Christians. Were he to have just a modicum of support for Israel or his fellow Jews, he might muster a little gratitude toward Christians as well. It is tragic to see how many liberal Jews have little or none.

Rosza further advocates that Jews resist the temptation to perceive “these folks” as our friends. They’re not, and they never will be,” he says.

That Jews have tended towards liberalism and historically mistrusted Christians is a topic for another article and usually a two-hour discussion. If anyone in our current PC culture made that exclamation about another religion or Islam in particular, they would be branded immediately as an Islamophobe. I am tempted to brand Mr. Rosza a Christianophobe, but that would just be collectivist nonsense.

Karen Kataline  ([email protected]) is a commentator/author, Columbia University trained social worker, and frequent fill-in for AM talk radio. She hosts “Spouting Off,” an Internet, call-in talk show that may be heard live, Tuesdays at 4PM EST at www.KarenKataline.com.

The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.