Monday, September 29, 2014

Christianity and Israel

A couple of months ago, I had a conversation with a Christian brother about the recent conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. Although he said that he had some serious questions about the situation, he told me that, in the end, he supported Israel. And when I asked “why,” he said, “Well, I’m a Christian, and Christians have to stand with Israel no matter what.”

I find this to be the position of many Christians, particularly those who consider themselves evangelicals, and they ground their support on their interpretation of the Bible. There are other believers who hold a very different opinion. They don’t see any biblical mandate requiring unwavering support; therefore, their support is shaped by the situation. Below are two articles that articulate these two perspectives:


Now I think this is an important topic for people of faith to consider; therefore, I offer the following question for your consideration:

  • Are Christians obligated to support the State of Israel? If so, why? If not, what factors should be considered?

Please leave any comments that you think are appropriate. And this isn’t limited to just Christians. I’d love to hear from people from other faith traditions.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Unaccompanied Children and United States Border Crisis


There has been a dramatic increase in the number of unaccompanied children crossing into the United States. In 2012 the number was 7,000; in 2013, about 24,000; and so far this year, more than 52,000 have arrived. The majority of the children are from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.

Various reasons have been cited for the increase. A report from the UN Refugee Agency documents that these children are fleeing conscription into gangs and threats to their personal safety, including gender- and sexual- based violence.
The crisis has been deemed a humanitarian emergency, and the U.S. Government has appointed FEMA to lead the coordination effort to create a matrix of existing agencies and the services they can provide. (http://www.presbyterianmission.org/ministries/pda/unaccompanied-children-report070314/)

The United States House and Senate are considering bills today that address the funding of this country's response to children arriving at our border and the protections given to them as they seek humanitarian protection in court. In addition the House is considering a bill that would limit the administrations ability to extend deferred action from deportation to a larger group of persons. (http://www.pcusa.org/news/2014/7/31/house-and-senate-border-and-immigration-bills/)

As people of faith, we might want to consider the following questions:
  • How might our faith shape our response to this issue?
  • What spiritual issues are involved?
  • What response would be most appropriate?
Please leave any comments that you think are appropriate.