Alliance for the Peace of Jerusalem seeks to bring a biblical perspective, balance and different tone to Israeli-Palestinian conflict
A. Larry Ross Communications
As deadly violence erupted in Gaza protesting the move of the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, The Alliance for the Peace of Jerusalem urged individuals to sign “Our Hope for Peace: A Statement on Israel, the Nations and the Gospel.”
“‘Our Hope for Peace’ is a statement of 13 affirmations and 13 denials that outlines what the Alliance for the Peace of Jerusalem, a group of key faith leaders, scholars, authors and pastors across a variety of denominations and backgrounds, believes the Bible teaches on complex questions regarding peace in the Middle East.
“It is disturbing to witness the violence erupting in Gaza protesting the move and to learn of the dozens killed,” said Dr. Mitch Glaser, president of Chosen People Ministries and founding member of The Alliance for the Peace of Jerusalem. “Our prayers go out to the families of those who died and to the Israeli soldiers who are in harm’s way as well as those Israelis living on the border of Gaza who had to evacuate their homes. We are reminded of the words of the Psalmist who told us to pray for the peace of Jerusalem (Psalm 122:6) and encourage all who love the Lord and Jerusalem to pray today for peace.”
The Alliance for the Peace of Jerusalem is dedicated to facilitating a better public understanding of the complexities of the Middle East including its roots in history and the Bible. The Alliance was founded as a response to the results of a survey, “Evangelical Attitudes Toward Israel and Peace in the Middle East,” conducted by LifeWay Research and underwritten by Chosen People Ministries and New York Times bestselling author Joel C. Rosenberg.
While the survey, which was completed in September 2017, did not specifically ask a question related to Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, data clearly shows respondents’ support of the Jewish people’s right to Israel yet their concern over the well-being of the Palestinians.
According to the survey, 80 percent of Evangelicals agree that God’s promise to Abraham and his descendants was for all time; 76 percent say Christians should support the Jewish people’s right to live in the sovereign state of Israel; and 69 percent say Israel has a historic right to the land compared to 46 percent who deny that for the Palestinians. Additionally, 41 percent of survey respondents argue the Jewish people have a biblical right to the land but also have a responsibility to share, although another 31 percent are not sure.
The Alliance for the Peace of Jerusalem’s goal is to tell the story of Israel’s role in the biblical narrative while also affirming God’s concern for all peoples in the Middle East.
“It is rare to see a group that holds to Israel’s right to the land as a legitimate nation that also has concerns for other people present there,” said Dr. Darrell Bock, executive director for Cultural Engagement at the Hendricks Center, senior research professor of New Testament Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary and founding member of the Alliance. “Usually one sees an either/or choice. The Alliance seeks to bring a biblical perspective, balance and different tone to these issues.”
The 13 affirmations outlined in “Our Hope for Peace” include general biblical truths regarding Israel, the nations and the Gospel as well as statements addressing the present and future role of Israel in God’s biblical narrative. The 13 denials outlined in “Our Hope for Peace” address common incorrect theological beliefs often held by Christians and ethical dilemmas in regards to support of Israel as it relates to Palestine and the Middle East.
“Our Hope for Peace” seeks to be instructive about major biblical themes such as God’s faithfulness to His word, His commitments to those to whom original promises were made, the importance of Jesus Christ in the plan of God, the necessity for mission work to all people, and a commitment to reconciliation, peace and justice that stands encased in how the people of God are called to live.
Leaders from around the world have signed “Our Hope for Peace” and invited others to provide their support through signing the document online.
“If there was ever a time to pray for the peace of Jerusalem, this would be it for we are in a unique moment in history,” said Joel C. Rosenberg, New York Times bestselling author, dual U.S.-Israeli citizen and founding member of the Alliance. “Jesus said, ‘Blessed are the peace-makers.’ Being a peacemaker means understanding that God is not ‘either/or.’ He’s ‘both/and.’ He loves all people on both sides of the Arab-Israeli conflict, and He commands us to do the same.”
To sign “Our Hope for Peace” or for more information, visit https://allianceforthepeaceofjerusalem.com/.