Listening recently to antisemitism coming from of all places the United State Congress, I am reminded that this is nothing new. Horrible yes, but not new. I personally heard our Vice President, Mike Pence say recently in Washington DC, referring to the disparaging remarks aimed at the United States most faithful ally in the Middle East, Israel… “Anti-Semitism has no place in the Congress of the United States of America!” Remarks are only part and partial when it comes to modern-day attacks on Israel, the BDS movement and Anti-Israeli organizations on America’s University Campuses are working to destroy this tiny Middle Eastern nation.
While again in the city of Tel Aviv, I visited Israel’s Independence Hall where at 4:00 PM on Friday, May 14, 1948, in what was then the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, eight hours before the termination of the British Mandate, Israel became a nation again! Those assembled listened with emotion as David Ben-Gurion, head of the People’s Council, the Zionist Executive and the Jewish Agency, declared the creation of the State of Israel. The Museum was originally the home of Meir Dizengoff and his wife Zina who won lot #43 in the land lottery, which parsed out the acreage of this new settlement. They soon built their home there in 1909. He served as head of the new neighborhood committee, and later became the first mayor of Tel Aviv.
This historical landmark serves as a reminder of not only the sheer determination of the courageous men and women of Israel who labored, fought, defended and are still defending their homeland to this very day! Placed prominently in the foyer of the museum one finds the words of Amos 9:14, “I will bring back the captives of My people Israel; They shall build the waste cities and inhabit them; They shall plant vineyards and drink wine from them; They shall also make gardens and eat fruit from them.” It was inspiring to say the least and as I looked upon the Israeli Declaration of Independence and considered the significance of those signatures and the prophetic event that this very building represents I placed it in the perspective of not only the history of Israel but within the perspective of our own nation’s history as well.
John Adams said, “I will insist the Hebrews have [contributed] more to civilize men than any other nation. If I was an atheist and believed in blind eternal fate, I should still believe that fate had ordained the Jews to be the most essential instrument for civilizing the nations … They are the most glorious nation that ever inhabited this Earth. The Romans and their empire were but a bubble in comparison to the Jews. They have given religion to three-quarters of the globe and have influenced the affairs of mankind more and more happily than any other nation, ancient or modern.”
The relevance, however, to the nation of Israel is found in the words of Benjamin Franklin in the year 1787 as delegates were assembled together in Philadelphia to construct the document we know of today as the Constitution of the United States of America. The weather was hot and they were about to adjourn for the day when Ben Franklin stood to address the assembly: “We indeed seem to feel our own want of political wisdom, some we have been running about in search of it. We have gone back to ancient history for models of Government and examined the different forms of those Republics which having been formed with the seeds of their own dissolution now no longer exist. And we have viewed Modern States all round Europe, but find none of their Constitutions suitable to our circumstances.”
So, what did the founders rely on for the framing of our nation’s government? Let’s just let them tell us… John Adams, “The general principles on which the fathers achieved independence were the general principles of Christianity. I will avow that I then believed, and now believe, that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God.” Noah Webster said, the religion which has introduced civil liberty is the religion of Christ and His apostles… This is genuine Christianity and to this, we owe our free constitutions of government.”
Even our Congress in 1854 stated, “Had the people, during the Revolution, had a suspicion of any attempt to war against Christianity, that Revolution would have been strangled in its cradle… In this age, there can be no substitute for Christianity… That was the religion of the founders of the republic and they expected it to remain the religion of their descendants.”
So why is this little sliver of land situated in the heart of the Middle East so relevant to us as Americans? Because from there, and what happened there over 2000 years ago, we as a nation found the direction, the principles and the inspiration to begin an experiment that still stands today! The United States of America! For the sake of Israel, for the Sake of our nation and for the sake of what lies ahead… may we never forget that!
Midwest Director of Ministry for the Family Research Council in Washington