Arab Christians Volunteer for Service in Israeli Defense Forces
While the mainstream media insists on making life in Israel look like Apartheid in South Africa, this story refutes that entire story line. Arab Christians, including Arab Christian women, are volunteering for service in the Israeli Defense Forces. It seems that even Arabs in Israel recognize the threat to their lives and livelihoods that Hamas and Fatah pose, not to mention the encroaching of ISIS from Syria and Iraq.
Perhaps the people who live in the Land of Promise can show the rest of the world what it means to cooperate for mutual benefit.
In most of Israel, Arabs live in Arab communities and Jews live in Jewish communities and no walls are required. They share public parks and shopping areas and cities. Nazareth, the home town of Jesus, is predominately Arab today, and yet two large Catholic churches dominate the mountain upon which Nazareth stands. It seems it is possible for Jews, Muslims and Christians, both Orthodox and Evangelical, to live in peace.
A visit to Capernaum on the northern short of the Sea of Galilee provides clear evidence of how important religious pilgrimages and tourism are to all three groups. Capernaum was the home town of Peter, James, John and Nathanel, and perhaps more of the apostles of Christ. Jesus set up his base of operations in Capernaum after being run out of His home town of Nazareth. Here, Jewish tour guides lead tourists and pilgrims through the ruins of the town that bears the name of the 7th Century B.C. Hebrew prophet (Nahum). Arab restaurant and shop owners: benefit from the foreign visitors, as do Jewish tour guides and the Catholic Church of St. Peter, perched atop the ruins of Peter’s home. Hamas and Fatah only create misery and poverty for all.
So, this marks a new openness in Israel to Arabs, and new opportunities for a united people of Israel, and those who hate will continue to kill, using the Koran as their justification. But now it’s not just a Zionist issue, but the majority of the world is unaware of this change.
Thomas Fortner is a Southern Baptist preacher, a missionary to motorcyclists, a computer network security engineer and an amateur Biblical archaeologist. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies and a Master of Arts in the History of Theology from the Criswell College in Dallas, Texas. Tom and his wife (of almost 38 years) Doris live near Fort Worth, Texas.