The importance of knowing Bethlehem

Bethlehem skyline from Church of the Nativity. (photo: Daniel Case – own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/)
The future of Bethlehem is being strangled under Israeli military occupation.

By Dr. James J. Zogby | American Arab Institute | Dec 28, 2019

Right​-wing Evangelicals, under the sway of heretical theology, are so blinded by their obsession with Israel that they can’t see Israel’s victims.

I have long been troubled by the way so many believing Christians in the West have either been ignorant of or turned their backs on the plight of Palestinians, both Christian and Muslim. Right​-wing Evangelicals, under the sway of heretical theology, are so blinded by their obsession with Israel that they can’t see Israel’s victims. Other Western Christians simply just don’t know or about the people of Palestine.

I find this state of affairs to always distressing, but especially so at Christmas time, since the Christmas story we celebrate not only took place in that land, it continues to define the lives of the Palestinians who live in places like Bethlehem and Nazareth.

When Western Christians think of those communities, the pictures that come to mind are the mythologized images that are the product of our movies, artists, songs, and stories. That Bethlehem is a real place with real people is lost on them.

It was with this thought in mind, that several years ago I wrote a reflection on the importance of knowing the real Bethlehem.

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