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Christian Theologians Protest Anti-israel Resolutions of World Congress of Christians

A protest against the anti-Israeli resolutions of the World Congress of Christians for Palestine, issued in Beirut, Lebanon on May 10, was published here today by the Ecumenical Theological Research Fraternity of Israel, a group of Christian theologians trying to deepen Jewish-Christian dialogue. The statement said that if justice is to be done to both Jews and Arabs, the historic link between the Jewish people and the land of Israel must be taken into consideration. The theologians protested the claim of the Beirut Congress to represent “universal” Christian opinion and said, “We consider that Christians should promote peace among men and not encourage hatred.” They objected to the use of the name “Christian” to sanctify a violent national struggle, and said it was theologically inadmissible to use the Bible to justify contemporary events or political aims. Their statement concluded: “Only an extreme bias can prevent a Christian from seeing that the Jews have derived their concepts of people, land and relation to the Lord from their annual reading of the Bible. Moreover, we think that the presence of the Jewish people from its origin and throughout its history in this land shows that there has always been a link between the Jewish people and the land of Israel. We feel that if justice is to be done to the Jews as well as the Arabs, this link must be taken into consideration.”