The annual gathering of the North American Lausanne Consultation on Jewish Evangelism met in Irving, Texas, on June 6-9, 2021. Twenty five agencies, seven congregations and many individuals were among more than 80 attendees.
Antisemitism is on the rise across the globe, and we are seeing an alarming increase here in North America as well. Findings published in the new Pew study on American Jews report greater than 75% of the Jews surveyed say there is more antisemitism in the U.S. today than five years ago, and 6 in 10 report having direct personal experience with antisemitism in the last 12 months.
In the aftermath of the rocket attacks on Israel, incidents are taking place in the U.S. and Canada at an unprecedented rate. The Anti-Defamation League reported that in the week after the fighting erupted (May 7-14), "it found [on Twitter] more than 17,000 tweets using variations of the phrase 'Hitler was right.'"
Hate speech is only part of the attack. Jewish places of business are being vandalized, synagogues graffitied with swastikas, individual Jews assaulted and worse. This reprehensible venom of hatred for Jews being spewed out is reminiscent of a past that culminated in the Holocaust.
We, as Jewish and Gentile followers of Jesus, lift our voices in unity with and love for the global Jewish community to address this scourge now in the strongest of terms. While our society is polarized in many ways, we respond with one voice to express the love and hope our Messiah brings to a broken world.
We know God's heart is grieved when "the apple of his eye" (Zech. 2:8c) is under attack. We affirm that help for the Jewish community comes from on high. We grieve as well and affirm with the psalmist who declared:
"My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep" (Ps. 121:2-4, NIV).
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