search

An Idea that Will Change the World: Why I Am an Advocate for Jewish Existence

I am an Evangelical Christian whose full-time job is combating the scourge of Antisemitism – especially when it raises its ugly head in Christian circles, historically an all too familiar sight. Christian Antisemitism is the oldest Jew-hatred in the history of Jew-hatred. Tragically, Christianity’s contempt toward Jews continues to fester, leaving in its wake crumbling Christian denominations and churches that promulgate anti-Jewish rhetoric, drive the BDS movement (Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions against Israel), and falsely proclaim Israel to be an Apartheid state. Kipling was right, “The burnt fool’s bandaged finger goes wobbling back to the fire.”

Contending with ever-increasing Antisemitism among many Christian pastors and leaders is a sobering and often disheartening assignment. Some days I wonder if I am even scratching the surface. Like the day I sat with an Evangelical Hebrew language scholar at a major Christian university in the southeast who told me he saw no purpose for Israel or the Jewish people because God had replaced both with the Christian church. Or, another day when the dean of a Christian seminary in the Midwest declined a request for my organization to do a presentation about Antisemitism and the Holocaust on campus because the issue of Jews and Israel was too controversial at a time when the seminary was building relationships with Islamists in the area – “We want to remain neutral on Israel so as not to offend our Muslim friends” said the dean. Or, the time after finishing a presentation in a large church about the rise of Antisemitism in America, a member of the congregation approached me exclaiming, “When will the Jews in this country realize they are the cause of all the problems?” That is a typical response I get in Christian circles – sometimes, it is even peppered with expletives.

When people ask me what I do for a living, I usually respond, “I advocate against Antisemitism.” But living your life on defense can become heavy after a while. Dark. There is not much enlightenment in fighting the world’s oldest hatred. A few weeks ago, as I was researching the dreadful Antisemitism of Evangelical mega church pastor Bob Roberts from Keller, Texas, who recently spoke at a radical Islamist conference in Baltimore endorsed by groups desiring to eliminate Jews from the planet, a light went off in the midst of another foreboding day grappling with another Christian leader’s jealousy and contempt toward Jews. “I’m not just fighting Christian Antisemitism,” I thought. “I’m advocating for Jewish existence!”

I am an advocate for Jewish existence because Jews for millennia have been the guardians of civilization. The Jews have proclaimed the moral character of God – His mercy and His justice – to a world hopelessly grasping in the darkness without a moral compass (Exodus 34:5-7). Paul the apostle declares in Romans 15:27 that every gentile in the world who has encountered the God of Israel has done so because the Jews have shared with them “their spiritual blessings.” Because I know civilization is doomed without the spiritual blessing of God’s righteousness I advocate for the age-long protectors of that moral righteousness – the Jewish people.

In her book, People Love Dead Jews, Dara Horn speaks of the Jewish religious scholars and prophets of God’s righteousness who perished in the Holocaust as the “guardians of civilization.” She writes, “…no one tried to save the culture of Hasidism, for example, with its devotion to ordinary, everyday holiness – or Misnagdism, the opposing religious movement within traditional Eastern European Judaism, who’s energy in the years before the war was channeled into the rigorous study of musar or ethics. Entire academies devoted to the Musar Movement were destroyed, their books burned out of the world, their teachers and leaders and scholars murdered – all the things that everyone feared would happen to the vaunted culture of Europe. No rescue committee was convened on behalf of the many people who devoted their lives and careers to…the study of righteousness.”

If we take lightly the violent Antisemitic rhetoric of Christian leaders like Rick Wiles, founder of the cable/radio/online outlet “TruNews” and pastor of Flowing Streams Church in Vero Beach, Florida, who warns Jews they will soon be marginalized and persecuted because he and other Christians are planning to “confront the synagogue of Satan” and will enforce a “Christian rule in this country” – what does this say about our value of God’s righteousness and our honor of those who have preserved it for millennia?

If we do not call out Evangelical college professors like Dr. Gary Burge who demands the elimination of Jews living in Israel who do not convert to Christianity (they should be “cast into the fires and burned”), what does this say about our commitment to God’s moral law to love our neighbor as ourselves? If we do not call out Christian nationalists like Nick Fuentes – founder of America First, who last week called for the elimination of all Jews from the public square, “we need a government of Christians” and “Jewish people can be here, but they can’t make our laws” – does our silence reveal our indifference? If we erase the people who have shepherded and protected God’s righteousness, our world will collapse. That is why Dara Horn calls the Jewish people the “guardians of civilization.”

When Antisemites call for the destruction of the Jewish people, the threat is against the moral undergirding of civilization – a foundation without which we cannot exist. It is for this very reason Jews have been historically targeted with annihilation: they have communicated the moral law of God to a world that despises God’s holiness. As the late Reverend Edward H. Flannery of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops rightly said,

“It was Judaism that brought the concept of a God-given universal moral law into the world…the Jew carries the burden of God in history (and) for this has never been forgiven.”

Western law was built on the foundation of a Jewish ethical and moral worldview and America’s Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights were drawn from the natural law of the Noahic covenant. One of America’s founding fathers, John Adams, wrote in a letter to F.A. Van der Kemp,

“I will insist that the Hebrews have done more to civilize men than any other nation.” The Jews, says Adams, have been destined to “preserve and to propagate to all mankind the doctrine of a supreme, intelligent, wise, almighty sovereign of the universe, which I believe to be the great essential principle of all morality, and consequently, of all civilization.”

Because of God’s encounter with the Jews – choosing them to bring His moral law to the world – they have an ancient duty to survive. Throughout the centuries of time, no other people have encountered such horrors, yet they still exist. One can only conclude it was and is the faith of the Jewish people that has caused their survival. As I advocate for Jewish existence by speaking out for the guardians of civilization maybe in some small way, I am helping to repair the world. That is an encouraging idea that will change the world for the better.

About the Author
Aaron David Fruh is the President of Israel Team Advocates, whose mission it is to change the growing anti-Israel narrative on college campuses. Aaron is the author of five books including The Casualty of Contempt: the alarming rise of Antisemitism and what can be done to stop it (editor), and Two Minute Warning: why it’s time to honor the Jewish people before the clock runs out. Aaron has written for The Jerusalem Post and The Algemeiner.
Related Topics
Related Posts

We have a new, improved comments system. To comment, simply register or sign in.