Christian Zionism III: Is It Unethical?

Palestinians who live under the PA have not been so fortunate. Despite having received, according to a World Bank official writing in 2004, the highest per capita aid transfer in the history of foreign aid anywhere in the world—enough to have paid every Palestinian on the West Bank $2000 per year, which is more than the average Egyptian earns annually—Arab Palestine has not prospered. More than half of all that foreign aid is unaccounted for.

Despite all this, Jimmy Carter and others speak of Israeli apartheid. This accusation is not only inflammatory but egregiously unfair. South African apartheid was based on race. "Blacks" and "coloreds" could not vote and had no representation in the South African parliament. But Israeli citizens of all races—Arabs and Jews alike—can vote, be represented in the Knesset, and have recourse to the courts.

Apartheid was also a legal system that restricted participation to a minority that had control over a majority. In Israel the majority give equal legal rights and protection to Arab citizens, who make up 20 percent of the population of Israel.

Irshad Manji, a Muslim, has written, "At only 20 percent of the population, would Arabs even be eligible for election if they squirmed under the thumb of apartheid? Would an apartheid state extend voting rights to women and the poor in local elections, which Israel did for the first time in the history of Palestinian Arabs?"

No matter how Israel responds to the current political crisis, Christian Zionists will continue to believe that the land of Israel remains theologically important and that the Jews continue to have an important role in the history of redemption.

This is the contribution which Christian Zionists have made to the Christian debates about Israel: since the Enlightenment they have insisted that the Christian church has not replaced the Jews without remainder, that the old and new covenants were integrally connected in the time of Jesus and remain so today, and that if the covenant with Israel is eternal then the promise of land is also still significant.

To read the complete article with the footnotes included, click here.

11/18/2013 5:00:00 AM
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