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Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Growing unease

Here's an interesting piece in the Washington Post concerning the growing unease between Jews and evangelical Christianity.
“I feel jealous sometimes. This term that keeps coming up in the Old Book — the Chosen, the Chosen,” says the minister, who has made three trips to Israel and named his sons Isaac, Jacob and Joseph. “I’m a pardoned gentile, but I’m not one of the Chosen People. They’re the apple of his eye.”

Scholars of religion call this worldview “philo-Semitism,” the opposite of anti-Semitism. It is a burgeoning phenomenon in evangelical Christian churches across the country, a hot topic in Jewish historical studies and a wellspring of support for Israel.

Yet many Jews are nervous about evangelicals’ intentions. In recent weeks, leaders of three of the nation’s largest Jewish groups — the Anti-Defamation League, the American Jewish Committee and the Union for Reform Judaism — have decried what they see as a mounting threat to the separation of church and state from evangelicals emboldened by the belief that they have an ally in the White House and an opportunity to shift the Supreme Court.

[…]

The result is a paradox — warming evangelical attitudes toward Jews at a time of rising Jewish concern about evangelicals — that could be a turning point in the uneasy alliance between Jewish and Christian groups that ardently back Israel but disagree on much else.

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