Last week at Job’s Anger, Ted McLaughlin wrote, Jewish-Americans Think Iran Deal Should Be Approved. He presented data from a recent Jewish Journal poll of almost 500 American Jews. The results are stark. Approval for the Iran nuclear deal is 53%-35%. The only subcategory that doesn’t approve of the deal is people without college degrees, who disapprove 39%-48%. I commented that it made me think of old line about some people being, “Holier than the Pope.” In this case, we have conservative Christians who are more reflexively pro-Israel than Jews themselves. In fact, I suspect they are more reflexively pro-Israel than Israelis themselves.
This is all in the context of Mike Huckabee’s comments about how this deal will “take the Israelis and march them to the door of the oven.” But what’s with that anyway? The vast majority of Americans are pro-Israel because of the Holocaust. But there is a special ferocity among the conservative Christians when it comes to Israel. And that is because they are Christian Zionists: they believe that the Jews must be in charge of Israel before the second coming of Jesus can occur. So the Jews are just a tool for the Christians. If I were an Israeli, I would not consider these people my friends.
It is more than just seeing the Jews as a tool. When Jesus comes back, he’s planning to kill everyone who didn’t believe in him. Apparently he is like Tinker Bell and requires that people “believe” so that he can exist. Historically, Christians have hated the Jews. They are, of course, the people who Jesus specifically came to save and what did they do: deny him. So if the Christians are right, the Jews are screwed. And the Christians think they are right, of course; that’s why they are Christians!
A little less than two years ago, a Pew Research Center poll asked Americans, “Was Israel given to the Jewish people by God?” Only 40% of American Jews said yes. Yet 82% of white evangelical Christians said yes. The only subgroup of Jews who were more in agreement were Modern Orthodox. Even the Ultra-Orthodox were less keen on that idea. Needless to say, this is not a selfless viewpoint. This is what Christians think because it will bring on the party at the end of time — a party that most conservative Christians think will be unsoiled by the presence of Jews.
Also last week, Sarah Posner wrote, Will Huckabee’s Ovens Comment Be the End of His Candidacy? There are those who argue that some evangelicals are getting tired of extremist talk. But Posner is correct, “[I]f you have 20 percent or so of evangelicals supporting Donald Trump, it’s hard to see why they’d be mightily offended by Huckabee’s outrageous comments…” More fundamentally, I’ve been around enough Christians to know that the best you will ever get on the question of whether the Jews are going to hell is, “Who knows?!” It isn’t their place to judge. Except when it is.
But to give you some idea of where Huckabee is coming from, consider what he said after visiting Auschwitz, “If you felt something incredibly powerful at Auschwitz and Birkenau over the 11 million killed worldwide and the 1.5 million killed on those grounds, cannot we feel something extraordinary about 55 million murdered in our own country in the wombs of their mothers?” That sums up where the American conservative Christians are coming from. Whether it is pushing for their policies against abortion or hurrying along Armageddon, the Jews are just tools and props. It’s offensive to non-Jews. It ought to be terrifying to Jews themselves.