The fourth Christ at the Checkpoint conference is slated to take place March 5 – 13 near Bethlehem.
For the unfamiliar this biennial event which began in 2010 brings together several hundred Christians, including leaders, from around the world primarily to proclaim the Arabs are victims of Israeli “occupation” and “injustice.”
The conference convenes under a banner of “peace, justice and reconciliation.” In reality the actual agenda is revisionist advocacy, promoting Arab victimization, while ignoring, and in some cases overtly rejecting what scripture says about Israel and the Jewish people.
They have taken replacement theology (supersessionism) to a more baseless level. Replacement theology in its classic sense is the belief that the Jews abrogated their covenants with God by not accepting Jesus as Messiah and the result is the Church has replaced them in God’s plan.
A simple look at Romans 11:1 confirms that view is contrary to scripture.
Jesus and the Church are Arabic
However, the Arabs have gone a step further. Not only are the Jews out as God’s Chosen, the Church as we know it, as well as Jesus have been re-invented. Jesus is not Jewish, but an Arab as is the Church itself. I wonder how many Christians worldwide are aware of this reinvention.
Rather than seeing Israel’s miraculous rebirth in 1948 as fulfillment of God’s promises to the Jewish people, CATC rejects this view, and uses the same terminology as the Muslims when referring to Israel , such as “occupation,” “apartheid state,” “colonial,” “racist,” etc.
Let’s consider the conference name- Christ at the Checkpoint. This is meant to suggest that if Jesus was alive today he would be stopped at a checkpoint (as most Arabs are due to their terror attacks against Israel). He would be required to validate his identity to ensure he isn’t a terrorist, before being allowed entry into Israel. In essence they are implying Jesus is one of them, and would be humiliated by Israeli security.
Let’s unpack this a bit.
First off without getting into the theological differences between Jews and Christians regarding Jesus, there are some incontrovertible facts which are essential to this narrative.
Jesus is a Jew. He is from the Jewish tribe of Judah.
He was raised Jewish. When he taught he did so in synagogues on Shabbat (the Jewish Sabbath). He never spoke in ‘Christian’ churches on Sunday. Why? There were no Christian churches when he was alive. His message was for Jews. In fact what became known later as “Christianity” actually began as part of Judaism.
Yet the Arabs have painted over these facts and stolen his actual identity to promote a false revisionist agenda for their own gain.
Rewriting the Bible
However, they didn’t stop there. In addition to making Jesus and the origin of the Church both Arabic they altered scripture in order to conform to their revisionist agenda. Consider the message given by Jack Sara, the President of Bethlehem Bible College at the 2012 conference.
He quoted from Ezekiel chapter 37, which is commonly referred to as the ‘dry bones’ prophesy.
To read the original text click here.
Here is what Mr. Sara said-
The hand of the Lord was on me and He brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me in the middle of the West Bank- Bethlehem, Jenin and Salvit and Nablus and Ramallah. It was full of bones….He asked me ‘Son of Man can these bones live? Can the Palestinian people live?’ Then He said to me ‘prophesy to these bones and say to them “dry bones hear the word of the Lord.”’….You see the Palestinian people were and are a lot like this valley of dry bones that is in need of the Church to come and prophesy life on them.
The text in red is not in the Bible. Those words were inserted by Mr. Sara.
If one of the goals of CATC is “peace, justice and reconciliation,” how is it advanced by altering scripture? Moreover, how can reconciliation between Arabs and Jews take place when the very words of the Jewish scripture is altered in order to delegitimize them?
The organizers have also claimed to present a balanced view of conflict. That would suggest having fair representation of pro-Israel perspectives included among the guest speakers. Of the 34 speakers at the last conference in 2014 two were pro-Israeli. 32 or 95% were not. As of this writing not a single scheduled speaker at the upcoming conference is pro-Israeli. This is balanced?
Examples of the leaders who have attended and promoted CATC include Stephen Sizer, Vicar of Christ Church in England. His anti-Israel sentiment runs so deep he has voluntarily appeared on Muslim TV.
Others include Sami Awad, Founder of the Holyland Trust who has been quoted saying “nonviolence is not a substitute for the armed struggle…”
Many of the participants and organizers are also part of the World Council of Churches, a Christian umbrella group claiming over 500,000,000 members from all mainstream denominations. The WCC is strongly anti-Israel as evidenced by their Kairos Palestine Document.
There are some eyebrow raising points in the CATC conference manifesto :
- “Christians must understand the global context for the rise of extremist Islam.”
Huh? Did they consult with Hamas or ISIS when they drew up their list?
- “Any exclusive claim to the land of the Bible in the name of God is not in line with the teaching of scripture.”
What? There are at least 170 references in the Bible about the land being given to the Jews. Yet, CATC is saying if you are interested in proving who the land was given to you are not allowed to use the Bible to make your point. Are they serious? What ‘Christian’ dismisses the Bible as a reference to prove a scriptural point?
In the 1960’s Bob Dylan once sang “don’t ask me nothing about nothing, I just might tell you the truth.”
Given how many facts have been flushed down the drain by the CATC Christians, it seems the last thing they are interested in is the truth. If the goal of the Arabs at CATC is to portray themselves as victims, it seems what they are victims of is their own lies and hatred. Heaven help them…