The Rosh Pina Project reports on the ongoing Ashdod protests taking a nasty turn:
Israel Pochter, the head of the Messianic community now under siege, reported that Monday night (7th March) the police allowed another demonstration until 8pm at which time the police disbanded the demo and the officers went home allowing hardcore anti-messianics to return unfettered by the law to “violently harass” members of the Bet Hallel congregation. Many were photographed against their will and stalked all the way home by the bully boys of Yad L’Achim. We have seen that this is a foundational and fundamental Yad L’Achim tactic from the anti-Messianic Yad L’Achim playbook, that RPP has recently obtained.
I’ll be honest: This is bad. The harassment has long since reached ridiculous heights. The police response was lukewarm at best. We need to keep the Messianic Jews of Ashdod in prayer.
By the same token, I’m finding it difficult to get too terribly worked up about Yad L’Achim shooting themselves in the foot again, even if it’s in a way that is merely horribly inconvenient to my Messianic brothers and sisters. There are far greater dangers and enemies out there. Case in point: On Friday night, one or more armed terrorists attacked a family of seven in the Itamar settlement in the West Bank, killing five–including a three-year-old and a one-month-old baby. Two of the children escaped. A third was away from home at the time of the attack and also survived.
Prime Minister Netanyahu issued a statement about the attack Saturday evening:
“Three orphaned children have been left in this family. One of the girls saw her parents and siblings stabbed to death. The family was brutally murdered in their sleep on the Sabbath. We embrace and support the orphans and the other members of the family. We embrace and support our brothers who reside in Judea and Samaria. Do not be disheartened. I know that this is a difficult time for us, but the entire nation is with you. Since the disaster, this awful murder, became known I have held discussions with Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Israel Defense Forces Chief-of-Staff, Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz, ISA Director Yuval Diskin and other senior security officials. I instructed them to make every effort to find the murderers and not to rest until they have been found and brought to justice.”
Netanyahu added: “I expect the international community to sharply and unequivocally condemn this murder, the murder of children. I have noticed that several countries that always hasten to the UN Security Council in order to condemn Israel, the state of the Jews, for planning a house in some locality, or for laying some tiles somewhere have been dilatory in sharply condemning the murder of Jewish infants. I expect them to issue such condemnations immediately, without balances, without understandings, without justifications. There is no justification and there can be neither excuse nor forgiveness for the murder of children. I expect a similar condemnation, and I demand a similar condemnation, from the Palestinian Authority. I am disappointed by the weak and mumbled statements. This is not how one condemns terrorism. This is not how one fights terrorism. See how Israeli prime ministers, myself among them, have reacted in similar situations, but there has never been anything like this, in which terrorists entered a home and cut children’s throats.”
“This requires sharp and unequivocal condemnation. This requires something else. This requires a halt to the incitement. I demand that the Palestinian Authority stop the incitement that is conducted on a daily basis in their schools, mosques and the media under their control. The time has come to stop this double-talk in which the Palestinian Authority outwardly talks peace, and allows – and sometimes leads – incitement at home. The time has come to stop the incitement and begin educating their people for peace.”
The Palestinians responded to the massacre . . . by handing out candy.
I wouldn’t give Yad L’Achim a pass on their behavior, but frankly, we’ve got bigger enemies out there. Enemies who would happily kill any Jew without a care as to whether they are Messianic or Haredi or secular or whatever.
I’ve said before and I will say again: I believe that the purpose of the Great Tribulation to come (and the little tribulations leading up to it) is to force Jews and Christians to turn to each other in the face of an assault by a pagan world. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend,” and all that. I also believe that the emergence of Jewish disciples of Yeshua living among their brothers is a prerequisite of our King’s return.
The Adversary will do anything he can to try to prevent that, just as he will do anything he can to destroy Israel or to stop the completion of the Great Commission. Messianic Jews will only aid the Adversary if we take an “us vs. them” attitude towards any of our “mainstream” Jewish brothers and sisters or if we play up what is in the grand scheme of things a pretty mild form of persecution to a Christian audience which includes far too many who are already in gear to condemn Jews and Israel in general for the actions of a few.
I obviously don’t believe in hiding the persecution of Messianics in Israel or pretending that it doesn’t happen. But let’s all please keep things in perspective and remember that ultimately, the Haredi are not the true enemy.