• First published in 2004 as Bartholomew’s Notes on Religion (BNOR).

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Pat Robertson & Israel: The End of the Affair?

September 2004 (emphasis added):

More than over 40,000 churches globally have confirmed their participation to mark the Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem, said Rev. Robert Stearns, co-chairman of the October 3 event to be held near the Knesset parliament building in Jerusalem, Israel…The Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem, which is being called for the first Sunday of every October, has garnered the active support of such evangelical leaders of influence as Ted Haggard, Jack Hayford, Glenn Plummer, Ravi Zacharias, Jane Hansen, Benny Hinn, and hundreds of others.

…Leadership of the Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem announced that Dr. Pat Robertson, a leading evangelical figure, will be the keynote speaker at a massive gathering to be held in Jerusalem on Sunday, October 3.

…”We can think of no more appropriate leader to address this event than Dr. Robertson, who has lived a life of spiritual passion, moral clarity, sound thinking, and influenced millions around the world to pray for the peace of Jerusalem.”

Today:

Israel has suspended contact with evangelist Pat Robertson for suggesting Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s stroke was divine punishment for withdrawing from the Gaza Strip – casting doubt on plans for a Christian tourism center that would showcase the growing flow of money and influence from U.S. church groups.

…Tourism Minister Abraham Hirchson said he gave instructions to “stop all contact” with groups associated with Robertson.

I blogged on the proposed Christian theme park in the Galilee here. The last time Robertson put his foot in it, by calling for the death of Hugo Chavez, Ted Haggard came to the rescue, and assured us that

Pat doesn’t speak for evangelicals any more than Dr. Phil speaks for mental-health professionals.

Probably Haggard will be called on to smooth things over again. But this time it’s going to be rather more difficult, seeing as 40,000 churches reportedly decided Robertson was the best man to be their “keynote speaker” on the subject of Israel.

Meanwhile, Hal Lindsey’s similar sentiments (albeit rather more ambigiously expressed) in WorldNetDaily have passed unremarked upon:

Deliverance from Oslo curse?

New Years Eve I predicted that something would happen to Ariel Sharon that would facilitate Benjamin Netanyahu to become the new prime minister. Though I am very sorry to hear of Sharon’s massive stroke, it appears that it will facilitate Netanyahu replacing him in the next election.

On a personal note, back in 1994 I visited the International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem, the HQ of Christian Zionist activity in Israel and the settlements. A pastor I spoke to expressed to me his belief that the sudden death of Norweigan Foreign Minister Johan Jorgen Holst had been due to his role in organising the Oslo accords. God using illness to remove or punish someone who stands in the way of his supposed plans for the Middle East is not a particularly unusual concept in Christian Zionist thought.

2 Responses

  1. If Pat Robertson believes that all humans who do do not accept Jesus as their savior will burn in hell for eternity, it is difficult to understand the warm and cozy relationship that he and Israel previously shared. The only explanation is money and power. Mr. Sharon’s heart attack is trivial “punishment” when compared to what Mr. Robertson believes his “eternity” holds. In actuality, this false belief that all nonbelievers will burn in hell for eternity is a myth. What would God gain from that? See: myth-one.com

  2. […] is unconditional (and doubtless he recalls Israel’s repudiation of Pat Robertson after Robertson claimed God had struck down Ariel Sharon for the Gaza withdrawal), but the mix of pro-Jewish sentiment […]

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