The Common Good
July-August 2003

Not a Monolithic Bloc

by Philip Yancey | July-August 2003

Many U.S. evangelicals seek an 'even-handed' Middle East policy.

"We write as American evangelical Christians concerned for the well-being of all the children of Abraham in the Middle East—Christian, Jewish, and Muslim. We urge you to employ an even-handed policy toward Israeli and Palestinian leadership so that this bloody conflict will come to a speedy close and both peoples can live without fear and in a spirit of shalom/salaam....

Mr. President, the American evangelical community is not a monolithic bloc in full and firm support of present Israeli policy. Significant numbers of American evangelicals reject the way some have distorted biblical passages as their rationale for uncritical support for every policy and action of the Israeli government instead of judging all actions—of both Israelis and Palestinians—on the basis of biblical standards of justice."

This is an excerpt from an open letter sent to President Bush last summer and signed by many prominent evangelical leaders, including Richard J. Mouw, president of Fuller Seminary; David Neff, editor of Christianity Today; Clive Calver, president of World Relief; John M. Perkins of the Christian Community Development Association; Robert A. Seiple, president of the Institute for Global Engagement; Vernon Grounds, chancellor of Denver Seminary; Steve Hayner, past president of InterVarsity USA; Richard Stearns, president of World Vision U.S.; Paul Kennel, president of World Concern; author Philip Yancey; and others.

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