Launching a Care Corps Against Hate

by Frank Eiklor

INTRODUCTION

What would you do if a Jewish cemetery in your community was desecrated with swastikas and other Jew-hating graffiti sprayed on the gravestones of Jewish dead?

What would you do if haters deliberately marred a Jewish synagogue in your neighborhood?

What would you do if a Jewish store owner in your community had the words “Kill the Jews” scrawled across his establishment?

What would you do if a Jewish neighbor or black neighbor had crosses burned on his, or her front yard and the words “Jews not wanted” or anti-black or other hate slurs made conspicuous?

WHY CHRISTIANS SHOULD BE INVOLVED IN COMBATING HATE

Of all people called to the front lines in the fight to alleviate the suffering of others, Christians are bound by what Jesus said when he was asked in Mark 12:29-31 which was the greatest of the commandments. He answered,

“The first of all the commandments is, Hear, 0 Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.”

A true Christian can never have the spirit of Cain

The “what if” incidents could go on and on, because they are happening in real lives – today in the United States of America. A true Christian can never have the spirit of Cain by sluffing off attacks against his Jewish neighbors (or anyone targeted by haters) with a smug “Am I my brother’s keeper?” response to God. Nor can a true Christian merely offer a “prayer without care” when meaningful action is obviously called for.

Nor can a true Christian merely offer a “prayer without care”

Our own response to God in the face of ugly and growing antisemitism, bigotry and hate is to accept the command given us in I John 3:18, My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth”. That kind of care can best come from groups of Christians representing their local churches – rather than an individual trying to be the Lone Ranger but being dismissed as rather ineffective.

Christian love cannot be conditional.

It must be unconditional, like that of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). When unconditional Christian love is confronted with the pain of others, it does not ignore the pain by looking away, nor does it avoid the pain by crossing to the other side of the road.

Genuine compassion takes immediate, direct action to ease the pain, protect the injured party from continued assaults, and restore the health of the battered … regardless of the cost in effort, time, money or other personal sacrifice. Proverbs 24:10-12 issues a strong warning against the shoulder-shrugging, lethargic “but I didn’t know” attitude that shuns involvement.

Genuine compassion takes immediate, direct action!

It is only appropriate and obvious that one will seek to defend his or her own loved ones, whether or not they are in complete theological agreement. The same unconditional love which we show to our family must be given to all people, including the Jewish people. After all, where would Christianity be without the Hebrew Scriptures which tell us about the God we worship-the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob? Where would Christians be without our Savior, Jesus, who came as a Jew?

… this plan for Christian action speaks to the evil of antisemitism and works with any related hate crimes.

The best way for the Christian Church to repent for past persecutions of the Jews is for individual Christians, representing the Church at large, to put away apathy and indifference concerning attacks on the Jews and replace such with a firm commitment to daily exhibit God’s love by learning more about Christianity’s Jewish roots, appreciating Jews as individuals, and defending them from those who would do them harm.

So in this basic “how to” work booklet, let me give you the few requirements to launching such a Care Corps after I first tell you it’s as easy as A, B, C. (And while this plan for Christian action speaks specifically to the evil of antisemitism, it also works with any related hate crimes.)

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