Worthy Christian News » Israel-Palestinian Conflict » Op-Ed: Do you REALLY care about the Palestinians in Gaza?
by Emmitt Barry
One thing that really frustrates me is the number of Christians who believe Israel is in the wrong for destroying Hamas. First, I want to say that I don't know of ANY believers who aren't grieved about the innocent lives that are being lost because of this war. But we should not forget that inadvertent causalities happen in war -- any war. A nation which cares about civilians and desires to honor the international code of warfare will take extensive measures as Israel has (cell phone calls, leaflets dropped, warning shots fired) to warn and protect the local non-military populations in enemy territory. Nevertheless, innocent casualties are virtually inevitable in the unpredictable atmosphere of warfare, even with the pinpoint accuracy of modern weapons...but especially when the enemy has a policy of using their population as human shields.
But I have a challenging question for my brothers and sisters: Do you really care about the Palestinians in Gaza? Do you realize that their spiritual danger is infinitely greater than the physical danger they face from this horrible situation? And do you know how many "evangelical" churches are in Gaza who teach that you must be "born again" as Jesus said? Any guesses? ONE! That's right there's ONLY ONE evangelical church in the ENTIRE Gaza Strip with about 200 members – one of the most densely populated areas of the world housing 1.3 million people has one small Christian congregation.
The Gaza Baptist Church is a Baptist church in Gaza City, Gaza, Palestinian Territories. The Church is one of only three Christian churches in the Gaza Strip, and the only one that is Protestant and evangelical. -- Wikipedia
So while Hamas is in power there will be a fanatical lock down on the Gospel in the Gaza strip. Hamas will relentlessly prevent an open door for the message of Christ wherever their authority reigns. When they seized power in 2007 the Christians were immediately targeted. Read what they faced in these past stories on Worthy News:
Prominent Palestinian Christian Killed In Gaza (October 8, 2007)
Militants Target "Christian missionaries" in Gaza (May 14, 2007)
Things are different in Israel. There is freedom of religion here, and many believing churches and congregations. So please, if you say you're a Christian and are vilifying Israel for waging war against Hamas, a terrorist organization devoted to Israel's destruction , you should realize that you're also inadvertently supporting a fanatical religious organization opposed to the Gospel and devoted to the persecution and destruction of your brothers and sisters in Christ, and dedicated to preventing their own people from receiving the gift of salvation...1.3 million people who HAVE NO ACCESS to the gospel message!
Israel must remove Hamas from power for the sake of its own security and safety of its citizens. Israel's war is a necessary defense against a relentless aggressive religious power. But we must pray that a wonderful side-effect of our victory will be the advance of the Gospel in the Gaza Strip. Removing radical jihadists from power and the "humanitarian" crisis that follows will open the door for Christian aid organizations to care for beleaguered souls in Gaza whose lives have been deceived and terrorized by a satanic principality called Islam. We must pray that the light of the gospel will shine there!
We who truly desire peace in the Middle East know that true peace will only come through the Prince of Peace – our Sar Shalom – Yeshua (Jesus). His light will never shine as long as Hamas and other Islamic fundamentalists are in power! Just look at Mosul, Iraq -- a town known for its 2,000 year Christian history – the last of the Christians were recently driven out by the Islamic state! Ironically, the same thing happened seven years ago in Gaza, yet the world didn't care!
So our warfare is on two fronts---the natural AND the spiritual. Let us keep both in mind, act and pray accordingly.
 The following is excerpts from Hamas Charter found on Wikipedia.
The Preamble to the Charter states: "Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it".
Article 13 - There is no negotiated settlement possible. Jihad is the only answer.
Article 15 - "The day that enemies usurp part of Muslim land, Jihad becomes the individual duty of every Muslim". It states the history of crusades into Muslim lands and says the "Palestinian problem is a religious problem".