Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Wednesday took the rare step of rebuking his own party’s left flank for anti-Semitism, criticizing them for believing that the principle, “Injustice against one oppressed group is injustice against all … does not extend to the Jewish people.” Schumer usually deploys his speeches to benefit Democrats at Republicans’ expense, but an increasing tally of violent anti-Semitic incidents in progressive strongholds has grown too glaring to ignore. In a Thursday conversation on “Washington Watch,” Southern Seminary President Albert Mohler said left-wing attacks on Jews ultimately boiled down to their “hatred of God.”
Left-wing anti-Semitism is ironic because America’s Jewish community has “been clearly situated in the Democratic Party, most importantly since 1948, when Harry Truman, a Democratic president, recognized Israel,” noted Mohler. “You also have a concentration of Jewish population in a lot of the northern urban centers, which are predominantly Democratic,” and “Jewish culture in the United States very much associated with liberal causes.”
But Mohler wasn’t surprised by the display of anti-Semitism, ironic though it is. He described it as “deep-seated anti-Semitism that has just arisen to the surface.” Anti-Semitism is “one of the world’s oldest and certainly its most deadly hatred throughout all of human history,” said Mohler. “There’s something that is unique in terms of the hatred of the Jewish people. And you see this in the Old Testament.”
Mohler identified the root cause of anti-Semitism in the Jews’ special status as God’s chosen, or “elect,” people. “Israel is God’s elect nation. … This was the scandal of the Jewish people,” he said. And because of that, they have “basically had the antipathy of the rest of the world” directed at them since the exodus. “we see that in the anti-Semitism that has so characterized human history, even Western civilization,” Mohler continued.
“This is not, to me, just about anti-Semitism … against Jewish people. This is a spiritual issue,” said Family Research Council Action President Jody Hice, guest host of “Washington Watch.” “It is much deeper than just hatred for Jews. It is a hatred towards God. It is a hatred towards the people of God.” Mohler agreed, “By extension, yes, this is a hatred of God.”
Motivated as it is by a hatred of God, left=wing anti-Semitism would proceed to expressions of hatred toward God’s other chosen people, the Christian church, Hice predicted. “This is not going to end … with anti-Semitic behavior towards the Jews. It is going to go from there to expressions of hostility and hatred to people of faith, period. I mean, we saw this reaction to Mike Johnson as Speaker of the House most recently,” he argued. In another recent incident, “[progressive Senator] Bernie Sanders [I-Vt.] basically told [former Trump administration official Russ Vought] in a hearing, ‘You have no right to be involved in politics because of your Christian faith,’” Hice offered.
Mohler agreed that left-wing anti-Semitism will spill over into anti-Christian bias and offered yet another example to suggest it is already happening. “I saw just this morning, where there are people saying, we’ve got to forbid these Christian parents from influencing their children.” The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently issued a proposed rule that would require foster parents to affirm the gender identity of children in their care, which critics say would exclude many Christian families from participating.
Hice noted the inexplicable phenomenon of “Democrats who seem surprised, perhaps even disappointed, by the anti-Semitism in their own party or on the Left, but they never say a word about anti-Christian sentiment.” He wondered how these Democrats could not see the connection.
“The Left consumes itself,” Mohler offered in response. “The most [vulnerable] person in America right now … is yesterday’s liberal because tomorrow’s liberal will chew him up.” His point was that today’s anti-Semitism will turn into tomorrow’s anti-Christian hatred, and the switch will leave many old-school progressives to wonder what happened. “It’s kind of like the nature of sin,” suggested Hice. “It never is content with where it currently exists. It always is going to take a step further.”
One reason why some progressives, like Schumer, don’t see a connection between anti-Semitism and anti-Christianity is because “they define a Jewish identity largely in ethnicity, which is, of course, the one thing Christians can’t do,” said Mohler, as Christianity is “made up of every tongue and tribe and people and nation.” Revelation 7:9 describes “a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes.”
“I don’t think that’s legitimate,” Mohler argued. “If [Schumer] had been aware of what was going on the Left — and it’s hard for me to believe he wasn’t — then he would have to know that the cultural Marxism on the Left was turning into deep antipathy to the nation of Israel first of all, deep antipathy to the very existence of Israel … and thus opposition to Judaism.”
But Judaism is not the only religion for which cultural Marxism fosters hostility, Mohler continued. “It’s a deep antipathy towards any form of theism.” To support this contention, he noted the targets of the Left’s cancel culture. “Nobody is trying to cancel New Age prophets. No one is going after the neo-pagans of this age. They’re going after theists,” he declared.
Then, Mohler zoomed in to be even more specific. “The part of Judaism that’s most hated is Torah. It’s the law of God: ‘Thou shalt. Thou shalt not. God created human beings in his image. Male and female created he them.’ A secular progressivist Left just has to hate that,” he argued. “And they hate any form of theism because theism comes with, ‘thou shalt, and thou shalt not.’ And that’s just as true of Christianity as it is of Judaism — a very important worldview issue for us to recognize.”
This hatred does not result in mere disagreement or vigorous political debate, Hice reflected. Rather, the Left wages campaigns of censorship, character assassination, and intimidation against those expressing viewpoints they dislike. “The radical Left actually wants religious freedom for no one. They want to dictate what we believe,” Hice complained.
“I don’t think they would say that,” Mohler responded cautiously, without disagreeing. “I think they’re sly enough to say that they’re for the toleration and liberty of ‘safe’ religions and ‘safe’ religious people. That means [religious beliefs that pose] no threat to the Left, no threat to its agenda.” He added, “when it comes to biblical Christianity … we are the main obstacle to the Left delivering on its goals. And they know that.”
The question is, do Christians know that? “So many churches refuse to get into these issues and equip their church family with a biblical worldview,” lamented Hice. “It is one thing to teach biblical principles from the pulpit. It is a different level to teach a biblical worldview and how to live out those biblical truths.” Paul urged believers in Ephesus to “put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil” (Ephesians 6:11).
“You’re going to be ‘mugged by reality’ if you don’t understand the responsibility,” Mohler agreed, adapting an Irving Kristol quote. “A lot of Christian pastors are going to end up saying, ‘What in the world happened? How did this happen? How is this showing up in my church? How is this going uncontested in my community?’ Well, hey, it’s about time you wake up and see the challenge here and understand your responsibility as a pastor.”
Mohler also pointed to the role Christian families play in raising up their children in a counter-cultural, Christ-honoring manner. “The most important thing that goes on here is what goes on in Christian homes and in Christian churches,” he said. Lest any fall victim to the conceit that this duty is easy, Mohler added, “it’s going to bring opposition. You can count on it.”
“In the United States, we have a tremendous political stewardship,” concluded Mohler. “That doesn’t mean we translate the church’s ministry into politics. It does mean we tell Christ’s people how to be effective in contending for Christian truth out of love of neighbor.”
Mohler urged believers “to be praying that the American nation will continue to stand for righteousness around the world. He also urged prayer “that the American people and the American government will continue to stand with the nation of Israel.”
Joshua Arnold is a senior writer at The Washington Stand.
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