VOLCANOS ERRUPT IN ISRAEL
By Rev. Ted Pike
10 Jun 08
A Christian student was scheduled for deportation from Israel June
30 because the government accused her of “missionary work.” Roused
by police at 6:30 a.m., German grad student Barbara Ludwig was taken
to prison and told she must leave Israel by May 30. Haaretz says
she “denied being a missionary, although she admits contact
with Messianic Jews.”
“They may have seen me at some meetings of the Messianic Jews,” Barbara
said. “I go around with Jews, with Christians, and with Messianics, and
I read books about Christianity. So what? That’s no reason to deport
Haaretz reports, "Michael Decker, Ludwig’s lawyer, said a hearing
held on her case in 2004 in the Interior Ministry was a “humiliating religious
interrogation” including asking her whether she believed Jesus was the
Calev Meyers, a lawyer representing Messianic Jews, indicated Ms. Ludwig is
accused of violating Criminal Code Sec. 170 and 172 [of penal law 5737-1977].
This law bans speaking publicly in a way that is offensive to people of any
religion. The law also says it is illegal to actively convince a minor to convert
to another religion, or to pay someone to convert. (See, Jerusalem
20, 2008, “Or
Yehuda Deputy Mayor: I’m Sorry About Burning New Testaments.”)
“Intolerance” in Israel
Israel signed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Article
18 states: “Everyone has the right to…change his religion…and
freedom…to manifest his religion or beliefs in teaching, practice,
worship and observance.”
Avraham Benjamin, Israel’s First Secretary (Information) said in 1980
that Israel is a “country universally known for its religious freedom,
tolerance, and plurality of views…”
Obviously, such “respect for diversity” no longer exists in Israel,
if it ever did. There is much more freedom to witness for Christ in countries
of the former Soviet Union, where evangelical Christianity flourishes. In the
coldest part of the Cold War, Billy Graham was invited to hold crusades in
some of these countries. But never in Israel.
Evangelicals fantasize that Israel is turning to Christ. Statistics prove otherwise:
In 1920, nearly 12 percent of the inhabitants of Palestine were Christian.
But, largely as a result of decades of consistent unpublicized government persecution,
Israel’s population of Christians had shrunk to 2.1 percent in 2004.
Anti-Christianity in Israel increases. (See, Christians
in Israel: An Endangered Species) Legislation now pends in Knesset that would not just deport but could
imprison Christians such as Barbara Ludwig. It says, “Whoever…publicizes
things in which there is an inducement to religious conversion is punishable
by - one year imprisonment.” (1) This is exactly what Jesus prophesied
would happen in the last days. Jewish leaders “…will deliver you
up to the courts, and scourge you in the synagogues.” (Matthew 10:17)
Blind Loyalty to Israel
When will evangelicals face the fact that they are helping build
up a Christian-persecuting totalitarian regime, not a democracy?
One would think that if fellow evangelicals began to be imprisoned
in Israel it might get them thinking. Maybe not. Already, hundreds
of New Testaments have been burned in Israel.(See, Israel:
A History of Hate Crimes) Would evangelicals reevaluate their unconditional
support if Christians were being burned?
That’s a good question. In 1948 “Israel-first” evangelicals
only praised Israel as she drove tens of thousands of Christian Palestinians
from their homes in Israel to be imprisoned in squalid refugee camps for generations.
The Mideast Bleeds) They praised Israel in 1982 and 2006 as she killed
thousands of Bible-believing Christians through horrific saturation bombing
in Lebanon. Right now, they praise Israel as Messianic Christians are daily
persecuted in southern Israel. American evangelicals and the government of
Israel look on, doing nothing.
Such evangelicals are certainly consistent.
They are consistently more loyal to Israel than to the Christians she oppresses.
1. Here is the actual text of Israel’s proposed anti-missionary
My friend Stan Rittenhouse, in his book, “For Fear of the
Jews,” summarizes Israel’s original anti-missionary law.
Because of its severity and potential to offend evangelicals, this
law has not been enforced to the point of imprisoning Christians.
It does, however, provide a precedent and pattern for more recent
The Penal Law Amendment (Enticement to Change Religion) – law,
5738-1977, was passed by the Knesset during Christmas week (December
27, 1977) and went into effect Easter week (April 1, 1978). Violation
of this law is a criminal offense, punishable by five years in prison
or a fine of 50,000 Israeli pounds (or the equivalent in shekels).
The above applies to those attempting to convert someone to their
faith if a material benefit is offered. The State of Israel is not
as harsh on those converted: Their sentence is three years in prison
or a 30,000 Israeli-pound fine. The law reads:
1. Whosoever gives or promises to a person money, money’s worth,
or some other material benefit in order to induce him to change his
religion or in order that he may induce another person to change
his religion, is liable to imprisonment for five years or a fine
of 50,000 pounds.
2. Whosever receives or agrees to receive money, money’s worth,
or some other material benefit in return for a promise to change
his religion or to cause another person to change his religion is
liable to imprisonment for a term of three years or a fine of 30,000
(From “For Fear of the Jews,” by Stan Rittenhouse. 1982.
The Exhorters, Inc. PO Box 492, Vienna, Virginia, 22180)
This law makes it a criminal offense to hand a Jew a tract with a
word of witness; to have a Jew over for dinner, discussing Christ;
or to witness to a Jew after buying him a cup of coffee. Israel's
most recent anti-missionary law (Sec. 170 and 172) and similar legislation
now pending are much more direct. They outlaw any public witnessing
to Jews, young and old, by Jewish or Gentile Christians.
Rev. Ted Pike is director of the National Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative
Let the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith teach you how they
have saddled 45 states with hate laws capable of persecuting Christians: http://www.adl.org/99hatecrime/intro.asp.
Learn how ADL took away free speech in Canada and wants to steal
it now in the U.S. Congress. Watch Rev. Ted Pike's Hate
Laws: Making Criminals of Christians at video.google.com. Purchase
this gripping documentary to show at church. Order online at www.truthtellers.org for
$24.90, DVD or VHS, by calling 503-853-3688, or at the address below.
TALK SHOW HOSTS: Interview Rev. Ted Pike on this
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