Palestinian Nonviolence: Muslims, Not Christians, Are the Leaders

100216_090527-1503-palestineWhenever I give talks on the effects of the Israeli occupation on Palestinian livelihood, the status of nonviolence as a means to resisting the occupation, and how I believe nonviolence is the only way to move forward to resolve the conflict and create a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians, one of the first and immediate questions I get from foreign visitors to my office in Bethlehem is, What you said is good, but what about the Muslims? Do they also believe in nonviolence? Do they understand it?" Even if I don't mention religion in my presentation -- and I rarely do -- this question always seems to make its way in our discussions.

From the Editors

Mohandas Gandhi was keenly aware of the root causes of hunger, and he knew that the problem was not a lack of resources on God’s good earth. "There is enough for everyone's need," Gandhi said, "but not for everyone's greed."

ECHO, a broad-based Christian organization in Florida, understands that principle. The group aims not just to eradicate perpetual hunger, as Fred Bahnson explains in this issue, but to help people all over the world develop the tools to live abundantly. As an ECHO staff member put it, "Redemption doesn't just start after we die. We can begin to experience life in all its abundance right here on earth."

As Old Testament scholar Walter Brueggemann recently explained, faith in God’s bounty is the opposite of the myth that one can be self-sufficient. "Abundance narratives demand a firm grounding in a conviction about the reliability of God’s generous creation," Brueggemann told a conference in San Antonio this spring. "The earth is blessed. God intended the world to produce abundance."

Koinonia Farm in Georgia has been practicing a theology of abundance for almost 70 years. Koinonia has stood as a beacon of gritty love and audacious peacemaking since its founding in the 1940s by Florence and Clarence Jordan, author of the Cotton Patch version of the New Testament. As Melissa Aberle-Grasse explains in "Growing Together," over the last decade Koinonia has experienced a renaissance, agriculturally and spiritually, thanks to a renewed commitment not only to permaculture but to the prophetic, community-based vision of the Jordans. Turns out, for the folks at Koinonia, sustainable farming and life in community are rooted in the same thing: faith in God's abundant love.

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God Is Watching

1100728-godiswatchingadThe markets are watching, the Republicans are watching, the Democrats are watching, the media are watching, the pollsters and pundits are watching. The public is watching and is disgusted with Washington, D.C.

When it comes to the bitter and ultra-partisan battles over the budget, the deficit, and the fast-approaching deadline for America defaulting on its financial commitments, the whole nation and even the world is watching.

But God is watching too.

Friday Links Round Up: The Onion. Palin. Pick Our Cover.

The Onion. Palin. Pick Our Cover. Here's a little round up of links from around the Web you may have missed this week:

  • "Dear Children of Troy: Read. Read. Read. Read. Read. Read. That's the advice of your good friend, Dr. Seuss."