Osama bin Laden, Israel, and, Yes,
By Bob Slosser
Christianity Is Jewish. That was the provocative
name of a little book by Edith Schaeffer, the smart (and pretty)
wife of the great Francis Schaeffer, who together directed LAbri
Fellowship in Switzerlands Alps during the roaring sixties
and seventies. Some of the best personal and world view theology
of modern times emanated from the little community, through which
passed hundreds and thousands of young people on their way to life
and ministry in many nations of the world. I was blessed to know
a number of their students who passed through the home fellowship
of Gloria and I outside Boston in those wild and wooly years, when
one had to be prepared for anything in those now-beautiful encounters
with the student revolution and the Jesus Movement.
Mrs. Schaeffers book, issued by Tyndale in 1975, came to
mind in recent days as I mused over the terrorist violation of
the American self on September 11, a day that will certainly live
in infamy. Her title helps one understand Osama bin Laden and
his henchmen. Their hatred of Jews and their goal of eradicating
Israel and all Jews has been well described, but what about Americans
and their western allies and other friends?
I would like say to the President of the United States and the
multi-cultural nation he governs: bin Laden hates all of you not
only for loving the nation that fully and openly supports Israel
more than any other in the world and thus stands in his way, but
also for your Judeo-Christian faith and your American heritage,
even where there are the differences belonging to democracy. Obviously,
I realize that not every American is seriously Christian or seriously
Jewish, but this nation was Christian when founded, and to many
still is at least Judeo-Christian, certainly from a heritage point
You must recall, Christianity was birthed by and grew out of
Israel over many centuries. The coming of a Lord and Savior is
forecast right after the creation of the human race, according
to very ancient Holy Scripture, when God warns His adversary,
Satan, that One would come "to crush your head" at a great physical
cost to God (Genesis 3:15, NIV). From there on, through the history
of the world Almighty God intervenes to tell more about the coming
For example, that Deliverer will come and collect followers through
the seed of Abraham (Genesis 12:2-3). Meanwhile, Abraham is given
Canaan (12:7) and the entire land becomes Gods in a special
way ultimately for His "treasured possession," the Israelites,
a "kingdom of priests and a holy nation" (Exodus 19:5-6) if they
obey Him and keep His covenant.
God narrows his forecast slightly through Jacob, whom He calls
Israel, shortly before Jacob died in Egypt. Jacob blesses his
sons, a serious matter in those days. When he comes to Judah,
he says, among other things: "The scepter will not come from Judah,
nor the rulers staff from between his feet, until he comes
to whom it belongs and the obedience of the nations is his" (Genesis
49:10). The Deliverer would come through the line of Judah and
would become a king and a shepherd (the scepter and the staff).
This brings David on stage where God speaks to him through the
prophet Nathan about 1030 BC, a thousand years before the time
of Christ, saying He will raise up one of his sons after David
dies and establish his throne forever. "I will be his father,
and he will be my son. I will never take my love away from him.
. . I will set him over my house and my kingdom forever; his throne
will be established forever" (1 Chronicles 17:11-14).
"Aw come on, Nathan! You must be dreaming. Are you sure God said
that?" Cant you hear the young king, still suffering remorse
over his adultery? "Forever? Nobodys throne is forever."
Surely Gods talking about Solomon, one would say at that
time. But is He?
Many of us remember Handels "Messiah" more than we do the
Holy Scriptures. So lets think about it. The foundation
for that musical classic begins in Isaiah 9:6 where the great
prophet Isaiah penned these surpassing words:
"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the
government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful
Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of
the increase of his government there will be no end. He will reign
on Davids throne and over his kingdom, establishing and
upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on
and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish
this" (he will not take a poll or ask permission; he will
just do it himself).
Yes, that is some king. The names of this child, the Christ,
are marvelous and warrant full discussion, which we will undertake
later. Many other references to the coming king were given to
Isaiah, but again we will not take time to note all of them. Let
me suggest that you look at Chapters 42 and 46 for prophecies
of a servant, a light to the gentiles, and a bearer of salvation.
And then Chapters 52-53 for a forecast of the suffering servant,
the man of sorrows, and the unbelievable account of the bearer
of Israels iniquity (as well the worlds), foretold
around the years 700-720 BC. These will leave you weeping.
Finally, comes the forecast in Micah 5:2 the prophet Micah
being a contemporary of Isaiah -- that the Messiah will be born
in Bethlehem Ephrathah, the "Ephrathah" distinguishing the region
of Jesus birthplace from the other Bethlehem to the northeast.
And guess what? A king-demanded poll sends Joseph with his wife
and child all the way from Nazareth to Bethlehem Ephrathah south
of Jerusalem to stay in a stable because there is no room for
them at the inn. And thats the town where an angel amid
a cloudburst of the glory of the Lord tells a frightened group
of shepherds, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great
joy. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you;
he is Christ the Lord" (Luke 2:10-11).
From that poor little stable in that poor little town came the
forecast King to rescue Israel "from the hand of our enemies,
and to enable us to serve him without fear in holiness and righteousness
before him all our days" (Luke 1:24-25). And He is the source
of Christianity, as Edith Schaeffer said.
Bin Laden, you dont stand a chance!
CBN IS HERE FOR YOU!
Are you seeking answers in life? Are you hurting?
Are you facing a difficult situation?
A caring friend will be there to pray with you in your time of need.