Anti-semitism: its history, present day revival, the spiritual battle and how God views the Jews
An evening seminar in the Answers in Prophecy series
Crawley New Life Church
In their two teaching sessions, Philip Wren covered the history of anti-semitism, followed by pastor Jim Cottington on the spiritual battle behind the hatred of the Jews and how God views them.
Shylock, Fagin and the Church fathers
Philip looked at the stereotype of the Jews which occurs in English literature, using Shakespeare’s, Shylock and Dickens’ Fagin as examples. He then briefly covered the history of the Jews in England to see how this stereotype had arisen.
Next he portrayed the anti-semitism to be found in the writings of the Church fathers and the formalising of the Christian antagonism toward the Jews in the fourth century. The blood libels which began at the time of the crusades led to savage persecution of the Jews. A jump in time to Martin Luther saw how his treatise ‘The Jews and their lies’ laid the foundation for the Nazi Holocaust.
The modern blood libel
Finally he looked at Islamic anti-Semitism. Generally Jews have fared better under Islam for two reasons. Islam does not recognise the divinity of Christ therefore the Christian accusation of deicide was never laid against them. Also, unlike the Church, Islam does not see itself as a replacement for Israel.
Modern Islamic anti-Semitism was stirred by the import of the blood libel from Europe in the mid 19th century, and in the 20th century by the ‘Protocols of Zion’, the fictional document which purports to describe a Jewish conspiracy to take over the world.
God still has a plan
In the second session Jim spoke on how God still loved the Jews. Despite their wayward ways he still had a plan and purpose for them. The irrational, never-ending hatred of the Jews is a testament to Satan hating all whom God loves.
The Scriptures reveal the Jews as “the apple of God’s eye” (Zechariah 2:8). Their land is described as “holy” (Zechariah 2:12). Their city of Jerusalem is termed the “centre of the nations” (Ezekiel 5:5).
Hundreds of promises
The Bible lists hundreds of promises from God that Israel as a nation would never cease to exist, eg Jeremiah 31:35-37. Even God himself cannot annul these. To do so would make him a liar.
Nor can they be spiritualised away as though the land of Canaan that became the land of Israel could simply mean the heavenly inheritance of the Church. Because God has not finished with the Jews or their covenant rights to their land, Satan, who opposes God or seeks to replace him at every opportunity, hates the Jew and God’s grace to them. The devil and demonic powers have been behind every unsuccessful attempt to annihilate them.
Jim concluded his talk by suggesting that those in the church who have embraced ‘replacement theology’ are in grave danger of opposing the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. We all need to be on God’s side!
With thanks to Pastor Jim Cottington and Philip Wren for their work on this report