Thursday, August 4, 2011

Come For Me First. . .John 15:13

This week, Glenn Beck was the keynote speaker at the Christians United for Israel summit in Washington, D.C. where he boldly stated, If the world goes down the road of dehumanizing Jews again, “then count me a Jew and come for me first.”

The purpose of this post is to focus on the statement but I need to give a disclaimer and also some opinions about the verbiage used above. 

Disclaimer:  I think Glenn Beck is ridiculous.  I would like to make some extreme statements/judgments about him to justify my disclaimer but it's not necessary.  Anyway, I just want to make it clear that while I am giving him credit for his statement, I am not glorifying him in any way, whatsoever.

When speaking in front of a group called Christians United for Israel, reporting that he boldly stated something pro-Israel is laughable.  It would have been bold of him to have made that statement in front of an organization less keen on Israel.  I had trouble finding any articles that didn't use the word 'boldly' though.  Kuddos to Beck for taking a passionate stand, or at least proclaiming one, about Israel.

Also, the world has never stopped dehumanizing Jewish people so this statement "If the world goes down the road of dehumanizing Jews again. . ." perplexes me.  Since the beginning of time, people have sought to annihilate the Jews.  It's nothing new and it never stopped. . .  In fact, the whole basis of the holiday Purim is to celebrate a time when thousands of Jews were spared from annihilation at the hands of Haman.  (Thanks, Esther!). 

Let me get back to the point of this post.  Regardless of whether or not I like Glenn Beck, if he was bold or not, or if I agree with how the story was reported and if the verbiage was to my liking, I have to say that the mentality behind this statement struck a chord:  “then count me a Jew and come for me first.”

John 15:13 states: Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

I remember the day I realized that had I been alive during the time of the Holocaust I probably would have been killed.  I was probably in high school when I realized this.  It was a strange thing to realize.  I would have hidden Jews.  I would have supported them.  I have always been so comfortable in my support of Israel and the Jewish people that I had never really taken into account those who felt the same way that I do now, who boldly and actually risked their lives, and lost their lives, for their neighbors who were being murdered.  The nazis targeted not only Jews, but also those who sympathized with the Jews.  They targeted the mentally ill, those with deformities, homosexuals (or alleged homosexuals).  Do you know anyone who falls into those categories (and many other categories)? I do.  Would I let them be annhilated or dehumanized?  Would you?

We get so caught up in our own lives, our circle of people, our comfort zones that we don't see history being repeated or fail to recognize how easily it could be repeated if we aren't careful.  There are so many genocides taking place in our world, but because it doesn't happen here, we shrug it off or we aren't even aware of it.  There are crimes committed against minorities just because they are minorities.  Still.  Here in the U.S., this great melting pot, people are persecuted and hated because they are different.

I had lunch with a business contact of mine a few months ago.  He's a very educated, friendly, wordly guy but something he said sort of devastated me, "Huh.  I didn't realize there was any conflict in the Middle East.  What started it?"  Ummmm....Isaac and Ishmael? I was dumbfounded. If we aren't even aware of major conflicts happening around us, how can we take a passionate stand for anyone?  It doesn't have to be Israel.  I love Israel and I hope you aren't anti-Israel, but everyone has to have their own cause.  Would you protect anyone?

So fill in the blank.  "If the world goes down the road of dehumanizing _________, then count me a _______ and come for me first.” 

Just a thought or two that came to mind today.

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