Open Letter to Mr. Rich Stearns, World Vision

Mr. Rich Stearns, President                                                                                       31 August 2016

World Vision

P. O. Box 70399

Tacoma, WA   98481-0399

Dear Mr. Stearns:

This letter is to regretfully inform you of our decision to eliminate our financial support for World Vision. Our real regret is for Nazzy Lungu, (ID/Pledge Number  ___), the young lady in rural Zambia we have been supporting since 2006.

My wife and I watched with sorrow as the you and the WV leadership took a stand in favor of non-biblical marriage, contrary to the very clear presentation of God that marriage is between one man (physiologically born male) and one woman (physiologically born female). You disingenuously backed off of that position when a large number of Christians threatened to drop their support. Our younger daughter made that move, withdrawing her support of the girl she had been supporting for nearly 10 years. We decided to maintain our support of our child, for Nazzy’s sake. However, it was obvious your theological position was set in stone, even though you backed away from its implementation.

This most recent problem brought to the forefront your apparent support of a two-state land grab in Israel. Your people supposedly did not know the person you hired to oversee the WV funds was 1) not a Christian, 2) had a background with the Muslim Brotherhood and radical Palestinian groups, and 3) was recruited to infiltrate World Vision. That level of incompetence does not speak well of your organization. After that, when informed by the Israeli government of the fact that your representative was funneling WV money into the radical jihadist organizations, you chose to ignore the problem (and probably aided in the deaths of numerous Israelis and Palestinians).

After a little digging, it became clear to us that you hold a favorable view to Replacement Theology; a spiritually dangerous position and an idea that cannot be supported by Scripture (ref. News Article). And you are allowing that position to direct your decisions with regard to your relationship (or lack thereof) with Israel.

You are using the hundreds of millions of dollars given to support children and whole villages around the world to advance your hidden theological and political agenda. How does that set with your Mission Statement and Corporate Charter?

It is for these reasons we are withdrawing our support for World Vision. Please close our account and remove us from your mailing list.

Sincerely,

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What Have We Done With the Jew?

For Reference See My Post “What Would You Do with the Jew?

I have long wondered why so many Americans have a bad attitude, or actually hate people of Jewish ancestry. I grew up in a conservative Christian home. My parents never exhibited open hatred or resentment toward other races, and certainly not of the Jews. For that reason I remained unaware of the ChristiansHolocaust-StarOfDavid who despised and rejected people of Jewish ancestry. As an adult I began to see some of this, but still I did not hear that theology taught or preached in the various local church groups where my family and I worshipped.

Perhaps it is because of the current tensions in the region of the Middle East, and specifically in the nation of Israel, that Christian views are being forced into the light of day. I know what God says through His Word. God’s Covenant with the Jewish people is irrevocably joined to His plan for all eternity.

“For you are a people holy to the LORD your God. The LORD your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on the face of the earth to be his people, his treasured possession. The LORD did not set his affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples. But it was because the LORD loved you and kept the oath he swore to your ancestors that he brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the land of slavery, from the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt. Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments.” [Deuteronomy 7:6-9]

The Apostle Paul, an orthodox Jew, a Pharisee, and a Christian called by God to be the evangelist to the Gentiles, was inspired by the Holy Spirit to write, “ From the standpoint of the gospel, the Jews [at present] are enemies [of God] for your sake [which is for your benefit], but from the standpoint of God’s choice [of the Jews as His people], they are still loved by Him for the sake of the fathers.  For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable [for He does not withdraw what He has given, nor does He change His mind about those to whom He gives His grace or to whom He sends His call].” [Romans 11:28-29 AMP]

It is far beyond the scope here to speak directly to the inept policies the current US Government and the United Nations are implementing and seeking to implement with regard to the nation of Israel. The United States has, from 1948 to 2009, been a close friend and ally of Israel; our only ally in the Middle East. We are, to our shame, forsaking them now. President Obama made his position clear in his very first international trip, when he snubbed Israel and lauded Egypt’s radical Islamic revolutionaries. Since then, to our shame, virtually no one in the senior positions of the administration has stood for Israel.

I have often said that, at least since the 1950’s, people live in a tightly defined “time bubble.” Everything outside that bubble is considered irrelevant. So, we only look forward a year or two; and our concern and knowledge of the past, may be five years. That is not to say we don’t know things; but very definitely we don’t learn from the past nor do we seriously plan for the future, except where money is concerned. Shaking our fist in the face of God obfuscates planning for the future.

Consider the following:

“In the ancient Near East, people sealed relationships between individuals or nations by covenant. When larger, powerful nations and smaller, weaker ones made a covenant. The entities operated like father and son or master and servant. Each had a distinct role to perform.

“The more powerful kingdom (called the suzerain) would adopt the smaller one (the vassal). In exchange for the vassal’s allegiance, the suzerain would provide military protection and financial provision in times of need. The suzerain had authority over the vassal. It might allow the vassal to maintain its own government and traditions, but it maintained legal ownership of the vassal’s land and agricultural harvest.

“The vassal was expected to operate in submission to its suzerain. In addition to giving a percentage of its annual production, the vassal was expected to be completely loyal. A vassal could only have one suzerain. Making a covenant with another suzerain was high treason and would incur horrendous consequences. The vassal’s loyalty was pledged to the suzerain and could not be shared with another

“The Bible translates this kind of loyalty using the Hebrew word hesed. It means love, faithfulness, or covenantal faithfulness. A vassal’s faithfulness was described as love expressed to his suzerain. Rebellion was to hate the suzerain.” Taken from ‘The Deliverance Principle’, as found in “Gideon: Your Weakness, God’s Strength”; by Priscilla Shirer.

My concern is the Biblical position many in Christianity have taken regarding the Jew and the nation of Israel. The verses quoted above are difficult to misread. Yet, there are many who believe the Covenant that God initiated and backed by His Name has changed, and He has turned His back on the Jewish people. If a Christian believes God could ever break any Covenant, then what assurance do we hold that He would not break the New Covenant – that of His Son Jesus.

A Transcendent, Eternal God, who lives outside of time and knows the beginning from the end, cannot make a Covenant and then break it. It is against His very nature as an Almighty, Righteous and Just God.

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.” [Romans 1:16 NIV] Thus wrote Paul in his letter to the church in Rome.

So, where does this lead us?

At the risk of being repetitious, let’s hear what God said, at the very beginning, to Abram:

“I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” [Genesis 12:2-3]

  • May 14, 1948: late morning eastern standard time (late afternoon in Palestine): David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, reads a “Declaration of Independence,” which proclaims the existence of a Jewish state called Israel beginning on May 15, 1948, at 12:00 midnight Palestine time (6:00 p.m., May 14, 1948,eastern standard time).
  • May 14, 6 p.m. eastern standard time (12:00 midnight in Palestine): The British mandate for Palestine expires, and the state of Israel comes into being.
  • May 14, 6:11 p.m. eastern standard time: The United States recognizes Israel on a de facto basis. The White House issues the following statement: “This Government has been informed that a Jewish state has been proclaimed in Palestine, and recognition has been requested by the provisional government thereof. The United States recognizes the provisional government as the de facto authority of the State of Israel.”.
  • May 14, shortly after 6:11 p.m. eastern standard time: United States representative to the United Nations Warren Austin leaves his office at the United Nations and goes home. Secretary of State Marshall sends a State Department official to the United Nations to prevent the entire United States delegation from resigning.
  • May 15: On May 15, 1948, the Arab states issued their response statement and Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq attack Israel.

[From the Harry S. Truman Library and Museum; Recognition of the State of Israel.]

The USA became the very first nation to recognize the new nation of Israel. Israel is the only nation in the history of mankind, to have been dispersed by invading armies (70 AD) yet maintained a national identity and ultimately reborn.

Over the next two decades the US was blessed with spiritual, economic and military growth beyond compare. Our infrastructure advanced as the standard of living spiraled upward.

Some may call it a coincidence. But, the obvious fact is that it resulted from God’s Covenant Promise to His Chosen People. The US was blessed because of the Genesis 12 promise.

Today, notwithstanding the Church’s malaise and retreat from Biblical Christianity, our schizophrenic relationship with Israel, now bursting into an all-out rejection of the plainly stated Biblical position of the Jew, has brought the US into a place where our two greatest adversaries are literally ‘thumbing their noses in our face.’ Russia and China have both, in the last 12 months, begun making aggressive moves, militarily, geographically, politically and financially, that place our nation at extreme risk.

Israel will stand – alone, if necessary – of that you can rest assured. Holocaust Memorial-StockholmAlmighty God has spoken. Biblical prophesies cannot be lectured away by the religious intelligentsia; nor can land-for-peace treaties be expected to be honored by Palestinians; nor will the UN be able to accomplish any of their anti-Semitic resolutions. Jerusalem will never be divided again and the Temple Mount will not be controlled by Palestinians. And Peace will come to Jerusalem, but not in the form the world thinks.

Peace will come to Jerusalem when the Prince of Peace sets foot on the Mount of Olives in His triumphal return to reign upon the earth!

So, while the European and North American politicians play their silly games, Iran blubbers that they will cause Israel’s demise, and the Arab nations feign blustery anger at Israel’s fair treatment of the Palestinians – TAKE NOTE!

The One enthroned in heaven laughs;

the Lord scoffs at them.

He rebukes them in his anger

and terrifies them in his wrath, saying,

“I have installed my king

on Zion, my holy mountain.”   (Psalm 2:4-6)

Renaissance of the Disciple: #2 – The Growing Popularity of Hatred toward Jews and Israel

It seems every generation of the human race will be given the opportunity to address anti-Semitism. Odd, isn’t it, that the Jews are still identifiable after so many attempts to wipe them from the face of the earth? Makes one think that maybe they hold a favored position with a higher power. What a thought. Every nation that has sought to eliminate them ultimately failed and have never regained their previous position in the world

It was just 70 years ago (January 20, 1942) when the German National Socialist (Nazi) Party held the Wannsee Conference to discuss and resolve the “Final Solution to the Jewish Question,” legalizing and formalizing their de-facto hell-born campaign to erase all Jews from Germany and its vassal states. As many as 85% of European Jews were murdered. This well-known part of history (commonly referred to as “the Holocaust”) is probably the single most horrific example. Today, active anti-Semitism is again on the rise, with the most recent trend fueled by the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.

In the past most anti-Jewish campaigns were geographically limited. Vitriolic outbursts and violence against Jews were local in nature, and not always considered newsworthy on the international stage. However, in this new millennium, a close look at the facts, globally, would cause any ‘reasonable’ person to tremble. The problem, of course, is that “reasonableness” is not at work in today’s ‘Internet-email-Facebook-Twitter-texting’ generation. Uninformed people, eager to be published in some form on electronic media, will say anything and (apparently) believe anything. The dissemination of ideas and opinions and lies regarding the nation of Israel and Jewish people is more widespread than ever in history.

Why is it, only three generations from the Holocaust, there is a growing ignorance regarding that episode? Perhaps it is that many schools in the nations that made up the WWII allies have begun to downplay the historical facts, partly as a result of the growing issue of multiculturalism. Children come to adulthood with virtually no knowledge of it. Oddly, in Germany, where one could see them wanting to sweep this subject under the carpet, the schools cover it thoroughly.

Then, of course, there is the radical Islamic campaign to disavow existence of the Holocaust, claiming it was created by the ‘infidels’ to amass sympathy for the creation of a Jewish homeland. Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is the current most vocal and persistent in leading this assault. Again, due to the ignorance of the truth by young people in the West, that mantra has become somewhat a cause-celebre. While, to many espousing such a position it is a point of intellectual debate, the reality is that it aids in fueling violence against Jews in many regions of the world.

The Christian Church has not exactly been the paragon of openness and truth on the issue. The Christians in 1930’s Germany, for the most part, heralded Adolph Hitler as their national savior. They were demoralized and hungry. The religious leaders allowed him (actually encouraged him) to take control of the national Christian church and make it a propaganda tool, as the Christians turned their heads and went about business as usual. However, long before that Christians have allowed and/or actively engaged in anti Jew bias. In the period of the Crusades, a particularly black patch of Christian history from 1095 – 1292 AD, a loose coalition of the Catholic Pope, European monarchs, and many knights sought to free the city of Jerusalem and surrounding areas where Jesus originally walked, controlled at the time by the Mohammedans. However, the crusaders massacred all “infidels” in their path who refused to be baptized on the spot to Christianity. There were large populations of Jews living in relative peace and prosperity in Europe by this time. As a result thousands of Jews were massacred, and many more driven from their homes and businesses, in Germany and France, in the ‘name of The Lord.’ It is interesting how both Muslim and Christian use the term “infidel’ to classify those who reject their position.

In the 21st century nations are beginning to line up against Israel in support of the Palestinians. Is it any wonder the nation of Israel today feels they cannot trust any nation to stand with them in defense of their borders for the sanctity of their cities and the safety of their citizenry? Let me be quick to define anti-Semitism as acts against the Jew, and not necessarily concerning the actions toward the sovereign nation of Israel. However, the two are not mutually exclusive

I will be writing more on the subject of historical anti-Semitism , as well as pointing out how and where it is playing out around the world today and the media blitz of propaganda against Israel. I will do that in later posts. However, for now I want to point out that Followers of The Way, disciples of our Master, Jesus Christ, must not only stand, but lead out against any form of discrimination against the Jew.

Jesus was a Jew, and although His death was perpetrated by the Jewish Sanhedrin (the first century religious rulers headed by the Pharisees) he was actually executed by the Roman (gentile) government. All of this, as anyone who believes in God’s sovereignty knows, was part of God’s plan set in stone before the foundation of the world. Jesus clearly forgave all those involved in His trial and execution, including His disciples who forsook Him. Paul, the Apostle of Jesus to the Gentiles, began most of his missionary work in Jewish synagogues, appealing to the Jews of that city.

A careful reading of Scripture reveals that God hates injustice of any kind. And while He allowed pagan civilizations to execute His wrath against an apostate Jewish nation, He also made it clear those same nations would pay the ultimate price for rising against and enslaving His chosen people.

“But when the seventy years are fulfilled, I will punish the king of Babylon and his nation, the land of the Babylonians, for their guilt,” declares the LORD, “and will make it desolate forever. I will bring upon that land all the things I have spoken against it, all that are written in this book and prophesied by Jeremiah against all the nations. They themselves will be enslaved by many nations and great kings; I will repay them according to their deeds and the work of their hands. This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, said to me: “Take from my hand this cup filled with the wine of my wrath and make all the nations to whom I send you drink it. When they drink it, they will stagger and go mad because of the sword I will send among them.” (Jeremiah 25:12-16)

In other words, vengeance is in God’s holy realm alone.

Jesus’ earthly life was an example of love for the downtrodden and social outcasts. Christians, those totally surrendered to Jesus as their Master, should be the most vocal opponents of all forms of injustice throughout the world. In the US, Christians led the way in the battles for women’s rights in the early 20th century, and later for civil rights for the black American.

Unfortunately, many campaigns against injustice are actually spearheaded by liberal-minded non Christians. I say ‘unfortunately’ only because it is a travesty that the people who know Jesus, who have the genuine answer to mankind’s ills, are far too often tongue-tied and hamstrung in the face of injustice. While we send and support missionaries to foreign lands we are blind to actions in our own countries that support or encourage injustice.

Through non-violent persuasion, living as light and salt in our communities, followers of The Way should be openly opposing any elements of anti-Jewish sentiment, speech or actions, including usage of slang terms and debasing depictions, as well as proliferation of jokes making fun of Jews. The reality is that when we allow any race, tribe or people group to be marginalized, for whatever reason, we set the stage for discrimination. To think that all people of any particular genetic heritage are sub-human or irrelevant is absurd. THEY do this . . . or THEY do that, we ignorantly say. Jesus paid the price of a cruel death on the cross, and shed His innocent blood to redeem all mankind. It is our mission to live out that example and lead people to knowledge of how to achieve peace with God (redemption).

“Then Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all , baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.’” (Matthew 28:18-20 –emphases mine)

Christian, you may not be able, as an individual, to change the forces of your government or society, or even your church group. But you can change the actions of those in your circle of influence. And if everyone did just that to eliminate anti-Semitism, we would see a tidal wave of change for the good, worldwide, in this generation.