A guest post by Jewish Israel member Mordechai Yaakov Allen
There is a kind of naiveté that comes with cleverness. For instance, Jews have historically enjoyed running intellectual circles around the Greeks, the Christians and the Romans, but when the contest turns ugly, as in the case of the “lowbrow” Edomites besieging the walls of Jerusalem, the low-brows eventually win. The clever Yidden who think they have Scriptural backing to take whatever the evangelicals offer in “no- strings-attached support of the state of Israel “ and yet enjoy spiritual immunity from their influence and infection clearly display this naiveté. The Rabbis, journalists and politicos who don’t mind crawling into bed with their evangelical counterparts in order to pay the bills would be well-advised to consider this eventuality.
Of course, included in this naiveté is the machismo that makes the Yiddish dupe bristle with indignation at the suggestion he doesn’t know what he is doing or that he really isn’t equipped to handle any ensuing struggle. Regrettably, I am suggesting precisely that, so…bristle away.
“What makes YOU so smart, wise guy?” The dupe will undoubtedly intone.
“Well, dupe,” I reply with hands thrust deeply into knowing pockets, “it’s like this. I know these people intimately. I ate their treif, I watched their movies, I played their sports, I schemed their schemes and I prayed their prayers for forty-five years. They may not…MAY not…sway you, but, be assured, they will eat your grandchildren for lunch.”
Extreme? Offensive? Tacky? Tough! It just so happens to be true, and you can see that for yourself, if you have any kind of a memory and the stomach to review Jewish history.
Now, lest my motives be questioned and/or my “attitude” impugned, allow me to explain both. Ironically, my motivation is precisely the same as it was when I was a born-again Christian pastor/missionary: I want what G_d wants. That may sound a bit presumptuous, even patronizing. I can’t help that. When I was at the top of my game working as a missionary on one of this country’s largest marine corp bases, physical or spiritual opposition only fired my enthusiasm and honed my attack. If I was opposed it meant I was on the right track. Any perceived weakness in the defenses of an unaware-but-hell-bound soul was fiercely exploited, and the assault maintained until either total victory or total retreat was accomplished. I was “discipled” to take no prisoners.
As a disciple, I developed deep friendships over the course of twenty-five years with likeminded men as we grew together into deacons, elders, pastors, teachers and church planters. We eventually spread throughout the nation and the world carving out a presence on over a hundred college campuses world-wide. We spent many late nights in focused prayer on specific spiritual fronts, and travelled hundreds of miles annually to meet with national and international leaders for weeks at a time in strategizing, fasting and praying for the harvesting of souls in all parts of the world.
My particular effort started in Southern California, then moved to the nation’s capital and finally Syracuse, New York. During these years I kept in contact with the men I had grown to know and love as co-laborers and brothers. It was not unusual for any of us to pack-up at a moment’s notice to answer the call or plea of another brother, jump into a car or board a plane and rush to their aid or comfort. Unfortunately, and this may be a topic for another time, I have not heard from any but three out of dozens of these men since beginning my pursuit of orthodoxy. I made initial contact with each, answered their initial questions…then the phone (or the email) went dead. Six short exchanges in ten years then total silence. It was simple. I had defected.
My attitude toward these men has not changed all that much, either. I could truly come to tears if I think very much about Geoff, Craig, Paul, Jim, Dennis, Chuck, Dave, Dan, John or Louie among an easy list of sixty or seventy others. These are incredibly likable and capable men, husbands and fathers. In my estimation, they were…and probably still are…outstanding role models who nurtured every one of their sons and daughters into solid citizens and major contributors to their respective worlds and efforts. They are quality men…and consummate warriors. They pick their targets and they aim very deliberately.
Any Israeli journalist, political leader or Rabbi who has made the mistake of inviting this caliber of Christian or any organization run by them to “work together for common goals in Israel” can be certain that their names appear on countless prayer lists spread like wallpaper in evangelical strongholds throughout the Bible Belt. The circumstances of your “openness” are seen as clear signs of Jesus’ return and subsequent reign in Jerusalem, and presented as such at Mid-week, Saturday night and Sunday morning prayer meeting/pep rallies. Your “encouraging embrace of the LORDS agenda” is doing more for stoking the fires of missionary zeal aimed at Jews than anything Martin Luther could even have dared dream.
Make no mistake, you Rabbis, journalists and politicos who think you are playing the Christians, especially the born-again, missionary types, for suckers. They know exactly what they are doing and are willing to “be all things to all men, if, by all means, they can save some.” If they can’t save you, they may save your children.
One thing is certain. If you don’t wise-up they will certainly save your grand children.