Image from Jordan Times
Mr. President and members of his Evangelical Christian base,
Given that I am perplexed by so many of your decisions, your most recent declaration regarding Jerusalem didn’t stun me. It really just made me shake my head, sigh, and mourn a little more. This letter is also for the base of Evangelical Christians (or any Christians for that matter) that still support you, because if you are not bothered by this unraveling of events, I may have to question whether or not your loyalty is to Christ or to your own self-inflated ideas of what you think of as being “right.”
Declaring Jerusalem the capital of Israel does not make it so. In case you need reminding, you are the president of only one country (and it’s not Israel). You and your followers throw around the utterances, “America First!” and “Make America Great Again!”, but apparently those phrases are only applicable where they suit your agenda (as with so much of your rhetoric). As of yesterday, the world also spoke out against your assertion through the United Nations, where countries overwhelmingly voted to disregard your statement regarding Jerusalem. Nevertheless, damage has already been done. Protests and riots, injuries, and deaths have occurred in this already fragile area of the world.
Why in the world would making a statement about Jerusalem be so important to you? I haven’t seen anything to indicate that you are a devout Christian, and question whether you have a relationship with God at all (although that can only really be answered between you and Him). Even if you were a devout Christian (here is where we get into the fodder for your Evangelical supporters), why would you make a statement that you must have known would cause issues in such an unstable area of the world…an area which is deemed holy by three of the world’s major religions…and an area that is in the midst of celebrating holidays for all three of these religions? This is obviously a rhetorical question, but is that really what you think Christ would do?
As a believer in Jesus Christ, I know that Christ was hated by so many, yet he turned the other cheek. He suffered so that we might live through His promises and His light. He did not discriminate between Gentiles and Jews, and had a heart for the poor and for the low. If we really are going through the historical time as Christians where we celebrate Jesus’s birth, is this the way we should go about it? Do we make a political example of the holy city where Christ died, all in order to be able to place an embassy there?
As with many of your ploys, the only reasoning I can truly see is that you are attempting to pander to your Evangelical enthusiasts. Instead of living the teachings of the lord Jesus Christ, the Lamb, these followers are lambs being led to the slaughter at your hand. I don’t buy the explanation that all your followers are “bad people,” as I believe we are all sinners. I wish they would examine the morality of their Savior a little more critically and celebrate him by living as kind and loving human beings.
I wish you would do the same.
Jerusalem is not within your jurisdiction. The decisions that impact the city, Israel, and Palestine should be made by the political and religious leaders of those regions, with cautious assistance as needed. The majority of the global community agrees. So as we move through the celebration of our holiday season, I would pray that you would think as if you were a neighbor of the countries of the world; not free to run their households, but to extend a hand when needed.
Additionally, I pray for all (especially my Evangelical Christian neighbors) to consider themselves in compassionate and reciprocal relationships to their immediate neighbors (in towns, cities, and states), as well as those abroad. As you rejoice in the birth of Christ, remember what he lived and died for. Remember his humility. Remember his acceptance. Remember his love. And when that celebration is done, I pray you think about how your leader has represented the one who began the end of his life in Jerusalem.