Tag Archives: Middle East

Is Jerusalem embassy part of God’s grand plan? Why some evangelicals love Israel

16 May

(RNS) — On Monday (May 14), the Trump administration unveiled its new Jerusalem embassy. Many American evangelicals cheered because they understood the United States’ recognition of Jerusalem as the “once and eternal” capital of Israel as a fulfillment of biblical prophecy.

Trump chose two evangelical ministers to offer prayers at the dedication of the embassy. Robert Jeffress, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas, delivered the invocation. John Hagee, pastor of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, gave the benediction.

Both clergymen adhere to dispensationalism, a theology informed by a literal reading of biblical prophecy. Most Americans have never heard the term “dispensationalism,” but they might have been exposed to this view of history through the popular “Left Behind” novels published in the 1990s and 2000s by Christian authors Jerry Jenkins and Tim LaHaye.

So begins my friend John Fea’s post at Religion News Service. You may read his entire piece here.

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Understanding nakba and the recent past for Palestinians: a history lesson

15 May

Hussein Ibish provides a concise historical account of Palestinian history in relation to nakba. You may read his entire post at The Atlantic here.

Meet the Mandaeans: Australian followers of John the Baptist celebrate new year

21 Jul

Mandaeans are followers of John the Baptist, and believe that baptism should occur throughout one’s life. But the ancient religion is in danger of dying out. Read this fascinating account of this religion at the Australian Broadcast Corporation’s site: Meet the Mandaeans: Australian followers of John the Baptist celebrate new year – RN – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Understanding the Present: The Impact of World War I in the Middle East

16 Nov

Historian Leila Fawaz of Tufts University writes (at the American Historical Association site)

The current refugee crisis is an opportunity to reflect back 100 years ago to the mistakes made following the Great War that caused—and continue to trigger—so much suffering and conflict. This is why the study of history is invaluable to understanding the present. Like memory, history’s influence is not fleeting but longstanding. We must account for it as we move forward.

Fawaz’s entire post is here: Understanding the Present: The Impact of World War I in the Middle East – American Historical Association

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