I pop my name into Google from time to time to see where my blog comes up, among other things, and I always find something interesting.
Such as this article on the movie “The Passion of the Christ, to which I responded almost exactly one year ago. Click the link under Insider Letters on the left side of the screen to see it, or click this link to get to it directly.
I’ve also included the text of it below …
True Christians respect and love Jews
By John Koetsier, February 18, 2004
In response to Mel Gibson’s fake “Passionate” effects by Emanuel A. Winston.
I haven’t seen the film, and don’t intend to see the film. I am a Christian, and the prohibitions in what we call the Old Testament against making images of God are still in force – so for those (true) Christians for whom Jesus is the Son of God, making a movie about Jesus seems somewhat idolatrous.
However, that’s not why I’m writing. Emanuel Winston, who shares a first name with one of Jesus’ names, says the following in his article:
“Therefore, the Jewish religion, if it stands as authoritative, is too great a challenge and must, therefore, be denigrated, diminished and demonized. This is the basic source of root anti-Semitism. ”
I don’t intend to challenge Winston on his understanding of the film as anti-Semitic; I haven’t seen it. But this statement is ludicrous.
I fully understand historical tensions between Jews and Christians, the reality of pogroms, particularly in Eastern Europe, and a definite hatred of some so-called Christians, particularly Roman Catholics, of Jews.
However, stepping into McDonald’s doesn’t make you a hamburger. And calling yourself a Christian doesn’t make it so.
Anyone who does anything of that nature shows himself to be, by definition, unChristian. Christians, after all, are called to love their neighbors. And the New Testament makes very clear that Jews and Israel are the apple of God’s eye … and that God loves those that love Jerusalem. Jews are the natural children, gentile Christians are adopted sons and daughters. Jews are the root; gentile Christians are the grafted shoots.
True Christians, therefore, respect and love Jews, respect and love Israel. Which doesn’t mean we agree on everything, but does mean that anti-Semitism is totally and completely unChristian.
And, to bring this argument up to date, frankly, Mr. Winston, Christians around the world are Israel’s best hope in an increasingly hostile world.
Another thought that occured to me as I re-read this comment, a year later, is the following:
How on earth can some people who call themselves Christians dislike or even hate Jews? It’s inconceivable, when you think about it. After all, Jesus was a Jew!
In essence, what these people are saying is: I hate the person who I also say is my Savior. Insane.