Thursday, January 05, 2006
MMfA: CBN's Robertson says Sharon stroke was God's punishment
On the January 5 edition of Christian Broadcasting Network's (CBN) The 700 Club, host Pat Robertson (left) suggested that Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's recent stroke was the result of Sharon's policy, which he claimed is "dividing God's land." Robertson admonished: "I would say woe unto any prime minister of Israel who takes a similar course to appease the EU [European Union], the United Nations, or United States of America." Although Robertson professed that "Sharon was personally a very likeable person," he nonetheless declared that "God has enmity against those who, quote, 'divide my land.' " Robertson called the 1995 assassination of former Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin "the same thing." A previous CBN news article, titled "Dividing the Land, Dishonoring God's Covenant," examined Sharon's decision to return control of the Gaza strip to the Palestinian Authority.
Robertson's comment was first reported by JTA, an international news service that covers "issues of concern to the Jewish people," and Joshua Micah Marshall's Talking Points Memo weblog, which links to the JTA website.
Source: Media Matters for America.
D.H.: There are many reasons why Robertson's position is offensive, not the least of which is the knee-jerk assumption that the Jews and the nation of Israel are "God's people" and the Palestinians are not. This assumption is due to the widespread influence of "Dispensationalism" within American evangelicalism. I have debunked this pernicious theory in two articles called "Dispensationalism Refuted - Flaws of Pro-Israel Rapturism," and "Cultural Irrelevance of Fundamentalism & Dispensationalism," found at http://haigler.info/page11.html. I am not attacking Christianity, as I am a Christian myself, or even other Christians' faith itself; but I think when a belief system -- which can easily be shown to be inimical to the core beliefs of historic Protestantism and is not embraced by Roman Catholics either -- skewers U.S. foreign policy and harms world peace, it is fair game for debunking. Nor am I anti-Semitic. But if we are to be honest brokers in the Middle East, we cannot precommit to one side being "God's people" and the other side not.
lawfirm webpage: www.haigler.info
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I was waiting for this sort of thing to come out when I heard of Sharon's condition. I, too, am a Christian, but this dispensation-alism is horrifying to me. I feel these people are trying to put words in God's mouth. They are all part of the "Left Behind" crowd.
thanks so much for the encouragement. I invest a lot of time in articles like those I cited, and go years not knowing whether anybody ever reads them or not.
<< dispensationalism is horrifying to me. I feel these people are trying to put words in God's mouth. They are all part of the "Left Behind" crowd. >>
You are absolutely right. If you study the history of this movement as I have, you find its heyday was up until 1988, when the rapture was supposed to occur, and since then when the rapture did not occur as predicted, the theory has lost all credibility in academic (seminary) circles. Its last bastion was Dallas Seminary, but with the retirement of John Walvoord and the appointment of Chuck Swindoll as president there, it's now pretty passe.
What it lost in academia, however, it has multiplied massively in pop culture with the "left behind" series. Tim LeHaye's books in this series have generated literally billions in revenues. I checked the publisher's website.
Makes me think I should be writing political thrillers presupposing sound theories of government, rather than reprinting news stories in DemLog that get only 40,000 hits a year.
Thanks again, Willys. Best of the new year to you and STan.
Thanks for your witty comment:
<< 'bout time Ol' Pat had his second cerebral event. The first was when he hallucinated that he was a Christian and not a hustler.>>
I hate to judge a person's heart, but there is no problem with comparing the Bible's characteristics of a true Christian with a presumed-Christian's behavior.
What is rarely expressed though is that the Jews, themselves, will not be saved UNLESS they have converted to Christianity! In reality this is an anti-semitic philosophy (if it can be described as a philosophy).
<< What is rarely expressed though is that the Jews, themselves, will not be saved UNLESS they have converted to Christianity! In reality this is an anti-semitic philosophy (if it can be described as a philosophy).>>
That is one of the extreme ironies of Dispensationalism -- the fact that the future it provides to the Jews is cannon-fodder for the "great tribulation" (armageddon). As I understand it, the tribulation will force them to come to faith in Christ.
I am extremely leary of any theory that entails "forcing" faith on anyone.
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