Later this month, Canadian Friends of Sabeel will hold a conference on “overcoming Christian Zionism.” Sabeel describes itself as an “ecumenical Palestinian liberation theology centre” that is “working for justice, peace and reconciliation in Palestine-Israel.” In reality, it is a group that promotes a misrepresentation of events in the Middle East. The conference slated for Vancouver is explicitly aimed at undermining Israel among its North American Christian supporters.
Conservative Christians have been among Israel’s most reliable bloc of friends in troubled times. Like any bedfellows, the Zionist-Christian alliance brings with it complexities. While some Christians use Zionism as a back door to evangelizing or view Christianity as a “successor” religion to Judaism, for example, there are also many in the Christian Zionist movement who respect the integrity of Judaism.
The upcoming conference is co-sponsored by three Christian churches.
The United Church of Canada, for decades but especially in recent years, has adopted a heavily anti-Israel approach to global affairs. Their sponsorship of this event is not surprising. The Presbyterian Church in Canada is also supporting this event, though this, too, is not shocking, given that the American branch of the Presbyterian Church has been beset by anti-Israel agitation and last year voted to divest itself of some Israeli holdings.
What is surprising – and worrisome – is the role of the Anglican Church of Canada as co-sponsor of this conference. Two years ago, the church passed a resolution that made some attempts at balance but was marred by typical anti-Israel boilerplate. With their co-sponsorship of this Sabeel event, the Anglican church has thrown itself unequivocally off the fence.
Campus, church extremism
April 3, 2015
Know the truth about the next anti-Israel propaganda conference
***Is Mennonite Church USA soon to join these denominations in their anti-Israel extremism?
Mennonites Walk Barton’s Bridge (discerning Anti-Israel BDS Resolutions)