Tuesday, September 29th | 11 Tishri 5781

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May 15, 2020 8:38 am

Christian Station ‘God TV’ Has No Place in Israel

avatar by Fred Menachem

Opinion

Worshipers pray in distance from each other at the Western Wall in Jerusalem’s Old City, amid coronavirus restrictions, March 26, 2020. Photo: Reuters / Ammar Awad.

First of all, I am by no means anti-Christian. I’m blessed to have friendships with Christians from all walks of life, and we have always learned so much from our differences, because we respect each other and our individual beliefs.

With that being said, many in the Christian community believe that Jews and the State of Israel are part of one big biblical prophecy, and that the founding of Israel was just the beginning of the end that will culminate with the second coming of Jesus. While I respect people’s individual beliefs, it’s the next part that has always been a bit troublesome for the Jewish community.

Many evangelical groups believe that Jews should be encouraged to become Christians as a means to fulfill biblical prophecy — and that, when the end comes, if we don’t accept Jesus as the Messiah, we will be punished and damned to hell. It’s one of the many concepts that has caused Jews to be persecuted for thousands of years.

Most Christian groups have no interest in converting Jews. But some do.

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There is a channel on the HOT TV network called God TV, which is now broadcasting in Israel — in Hebrew no less. When God TV went to get approved for their license to broadcast, they misrepresented themselves by claiming that their sole intention was to broadcast to Christians in Israel, and ultimately they were approved for that purpose. But they lied.

Recently, it was discovered that their intention is to proselytize to Jews. In their twisted logic, they claim that they aren’t trying to convert Jews, but are only trying to get us to accept Jesus as the Messiah while staying Jews.

Israeli law clearly states that any person or organization that attempts to convert a minor faces six months in prison — and many minors’ families subscribe to HOT TV. Outside of the law, there’s the ethical component. Israel is the one country in the world where we can freely be Jewish and practice Judaism without any threat of persecution.

While there is no reason a Christian TV station can’t come into Israel and broadcast if they are solely focused on Christians in Israel, they have no right to come into a Jewish country and try to convert us. As Jews, we don’t attempt to convert Christians or anyone for that matter, and they should have the same respect for us.

We’ve had enough persecution in our history, and enough forced conversions. God TV has no place in Israel.

Fred Menachem is a political commentator, a dual citizen of Israel and the United States who works in the cyber security industry. Twitter @FredMenachem

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