Condemnation of Israel – A Call to Solidarity and Prayer

editor - 3 April 2020

In the first decades of its existence, Israel was treated with enthusiasm and respect by both Church and State. But in recent decades, we have seen a tendency to denigrate the State of Israel, and even deny its legitimacy.

A few weeks ago, Ms Bensouda, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), announced her intention to investigate the commission of war crimes by Israeli and Palestinian leaders ‘in Palestine’. In her opinion, Palestine is a ‘state’ for the purposes of the ICC Statute; ‘Palestine’ consists of the whole ‘West Bank (including East Jerusalem) and Gaza’; and there are ‘reasonable grounds to believe’ that Israeli leaders have committed war crimes by enabling settlements to be built ‘in Palestine’. The matter is currently being examined by three judges of the ICC.

This means that the mere fact that Jews are allowed to live in their historic homeland is considered to be a heinous crime worthy of international condemnation and prosecution.

“Mere fact that Jews are allowed to live in their historic homeland considered to be a heinous crime”

For decades, the United Nations institutions have become a platform where Israel has continuously been criticised and condemned. For example, in the last few years, UNESCO has effectively denied the Jews’ historical connection with the Temple Mount. While mentioning that Jerusalem and its Old City walls are holy to all three religions (Judaism, Islam and Christianity), the Temple Mount is referred to in these resolutions exclusively by its Arabic name ‘Al-Haram Al-Sharif’ (meaning ‘the Noble Sanctuary’).

Countless UN resolutions portray Israel solely as a perpetrator of crimes that are an obstacle to Palestinian self-determination. Much reporting about the Israel- Palestine conflict makes a caricature of Israel and even demonises this sovereign nation.


The global Boycott, Divestment and Sanction campaign (BDS) has, fortunately, in some countries been recognised for what it is: anti-Semitism. The endless criticism of Israel that manifests itself as ‘anti-Zionism’, is in practice nothing less than a form of anti-Semitism. It denies Jews any place in the land that God has promised to them.

“Global Boycott, Divestment and Sanction campaign (BDS), in some countries been recognised for what it is: anti-Semitism”

All of this completely ignores the achievements of the State of Israel, including the fact that it is the only country in the Middle East where Christians, Jews and adherents of other religions have freedom of religion and worship.

At the same time, Jews in other countries, where they have been living for centuries, are increasingly being threatened and stereotyped as so often has happened in the past – with disastrous results.

We see all of this as part of a process wherein, step by step, the history of Israel is ignored and the Biblical and historical connection between the Jewish people and the land, and thereby the legitimacy of the Jewish State, are denied. The very existence of the Jewish people in the land is thereby being threatened, not just by military force but also through international politics and public opinion.

The State of Israel and the Jewish people are not perfect. But they are still the apple of God’s eye. In the same way, the Church is not perfect, but despite its faults, it is and remains the body of Christ.

God is faithful to His covenants with His people. He is bringing the Jewish people home to the land of their forefathers, as He promised through the prophets He would. That affects us as Christians. As the body of Christ, we are one with Jesus, who suffered as King of the Jews in Jerusalem, died and rose again for the salvation of His people Israel and the whole world.

“God is faithful to His covenants with His people.”

“Theirs is the adoption to sonship; theirs the divine glory, the covenants, the receiving of the law, the temple worship and the promises. Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of the Messiah, who is God over all, forever praised!” (Romans 9:4-5) “As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies for your sake; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs, for God’s gifts and his call are irrevocable” (Romans 11:28-29).

Israel needs our support, and we are called as the people of God to give that support. We are convinced that we cannot sit by silently while Israel and the Jewish people are being condemned and attacked. We need to be alert and to speak up in their defence.

Above all, we urge you to remember the Jewish people and the State of Israel in your services of worship and in your prayers.

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