A book by John Hagee - review
"If Jesus can be separated from his Jewish roots, then Christians can continue to praise the dead Jews of the past (Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob) while snubbing the Goldbergs across the street. But when you correctly see the Jewish people as the family of our Lord, they become our extended family whom we are commanded to love unconditionally." (p. 92)
And more than that, Hagee commends scripture to us and supports the idea that as Christians, we're to support not only the people of Israel, but the physical nation as well. He backs up why he believes the current nation of Israel (you know, the *physical* area near Jordan) has the right to exist and why Palestinians do not have a right to the land. He also spends a fair amount of time differentiating between Christian/Jewish beliefs and the beliefs of Muslims.
Most amazing is his historical treatment of Christians toward Jews during the time before the Holocaust. Hagee put forth a fairly compact history with several examples, but for the purposes of brevity, let's compare and contrast what Easter is like today and during the early Church:
Today we celebrate Easter by letting little children run 'round about the house hunting for chocolate bunnies and plastic Easter eggs. And so far as I've seen, just about every Christian pastor strives for a good long while and prays and works on a sermon that will have JUST the right balance between helping people feel convicted of their sins and coming to Christ, and feeling welcome in their churches. We all like to think about who our visitors might be, especially that week. We make extra-special sure to say "hi" to everyone and introduce ourselves. We wear our nicest clothes and try to be polite and friendly.
But in the early church years, "at Easter, the Christian clergy would enflame the passions of the faithful until the saints would race out of the church with clubs, run to the Jewish quarter, and beat Jews to death for what they did to Jesus on the cross. It became an annual custom at Easter to drag a Jew into the church and slap him on the face before the altar." (p. 20)
No wonder those Jewish folks are so dang easy to convert today!
And now that I'm a Christian, stuff like that gets to be part of *my* history as well. Yay. Thanks a lot, guys. Though I need to say this to those of you reading my blog in 1,000 years should Jesus tarry: that emergent church thing? It wasn't me. Just for the record that part wasn't my fault.
In all, I'd say it's an excellent book but it has one major flaw: those who really need to read it probably won't.