Evangelicals and Jerusalem

I had a bunch of good items stacked up 8-high in a draft blog. I’m going to break them up today.

Critics of evangelicals’ advocacy on Jerusalem say that they aren’t interested in the welfare of Jews, but rather believe that the Book of Revelations says Jewish control of Jerusalem is necessary for Jesus to return.

“The last battle is going to be over Jerusalem…that is the holy city,” Pat Robertson, the famed televangelist, said on his TV show Tuesday. “You go in favor of breaking up Jerusalem, you’re going against the direct word of Jesus, and this is a prophecy that has stood for hundreds of years.”

(Ian Lovett in a Wall Street Journal news item)

I’m sympathetic with the critics, though I don’t think it’s as simple as Evangelicals faking concern for the welfare of Jews to cover up efforts to hasten Christ’s return (at Jews’ short-term expense).

Rather, if I believed, as many or most evangelicals seem to, in the novel eschatological view of dispensational premillennialism, as popularized by prophecy porn like Hal Lindsey’s Late Great Planet Earth and Tim LaHaye’s Left Behind franchise, it would be virtually impossible to keep those views from coloring my politics.

I personally abandoned those views, which I’d held half-heartedly, for saner and more historic eschatology about forty years ago. Because I was half-hearted about them, I don’t think they tainted my politics (remember: “It doesn’t matter what you ‘believe’ so long as you’re insincere”), but I can empathize with the True Believers.

However, as my footer in each blog said until recently, there is no epistemological Switzerland. Everybody has a worldview. And as a person of serious Christian faith, I would not for a moment try to exclude Evangelical voices from the Public Square. I just wish the sincere dispensationalists weren’t so loud out there.

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I would a thousand times rather have dinner with secular liberals of a certain temperament than with a group of religious conservatives who agreed with me about most things, but who have no sense of humor or irony.

(Rod Dreher)

Some succinct standing advice on recurring themes.