Just Call Me Nathanael

In John 1:46, Nathanael, a Jewish gentleman who would soon become one of Jesus’ disciples, asked Philip, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” His question was in response to Philip’s claim that they had found the Messiah, and that Jesus of Nazareth was that man. It’s understandable that Nathanael responded skeptically since Nazareth had a bad reputation. The Nazarenes seemed to understand they had that ill repute because they were not good people. I find it interesting that God chose that town of sinners as the place where His Son, the promised Messiah, would be raised. Maybe it’s because the Nazarenes were at least honest about their spiritual condition. Maybe it’s because they didn’t raise their sinfulness like a banner and shove it down the throats of the rest of Judea in the name of tolerance and equality. I wonder what Nathanael would say of the University of California at Berkeley. Actually, I don’t wonder. I know what he would say. “Can any good come out of Berkeley?” 

I am not going to spend time discussing the moral issues going on in our country that are contrary to the Word of God. But I am disgusted with the willful blindness of the extreme left when it comes to world affairs. This video, made on the campus of Berkeley, is exactly what I’m talking about. They  applaud ISIS but call Israel an enslaving terrorist country. What?

On one hand, I get it. The devil has always had it out for Israel simply because God loved and chose them as His own. And while Israel today is not a theocracy but a secular state, they continue to be God’s chosen people because of the unconditional covenant God made with Abraham, the forefather of Israel. So when I see hateful people on the campus of a place like Berkeley spewing their intolerance against God’s chosen, it actually makes sense. They are just doing what their father wants them to do. Only pure, willful ignorance could make college students support ISIS, say that Hamas is not a terrorist organization, and then turn back and say that Israel is the terrorist. I don’t see a lot of tolerance in that, only blatant, leftist anti-Semitism. (Hey, Berkeley, anti-Semitism is racism! Racism is intolerance!)

I’ve seen the images in the news of the bloodied, maimed and dead Palestinian children…of women crying over the destruction of their homes and loss of their loved ones. I’ve shed tears for them, and my heart goes out to the innocent caught in the middle of a bad situation. But it really irks me that the real bad guys don’t get blamed for it. Who are the real bad guys? The terrorist organization called Hamas, which many Berkeley students in the video apparently don't know much about. But then, maybe those young people aren't the ones to blame. Maybe it's the adults who are misleading them. Their professors, for instance, or the adults running the American news media. Why DOES the media criticize Israel, who used to be our staunchest ally in the Middle East until the Obama administration thumbed its nose at them, when they are simply trying to protect their borders and their citizens? If Canadians were constantly attacking Americans living along the border, shooting missiles into American lands and detonating bombs in American malls or other high traffic areas, I wonder if students at Berkeley would consider the United States a terrorist organization for shooting a few missiles back at Canada to get them to stop terrorizing our people. Well, actually, most on the left probably would think we were still wrong. And I’ll stop there before I really get myself in trouble. (By the way, I only picked on Canada because I figured no one in their right mind would honestly think I believe our peaceful neighbors to the north would do such a thing. I love Canadians.)

I think our country is coming under God’s judgment for so many reasons, primarily for turning away from Him. In His covenant with Abraham, God promised to bless those who blessed Abraham’s seed, and curse those who cursed them. I literally saw someone cursing Israel in that video. That is a result of turning away from God, so I guess we are coming under God’s judgment secondarily because as a nation, we are turning our back on Israel. The funny thing is, they don’t need us. Not really. The Bible says that in the last days when the world turns against Israel, God will miraculously preserve her. It’s not Israel I’m worried about. Israel has God on her side. It’s America I’m worried about.  Berkeley and the raging liberalism taught there and on most secular college campuses of America are merely a symptom of a much greater problem. It's called godlessness. 

I can't deny that I hope I won’t see the collapse of my country. I pray that my children, my husband and I won’t see the kind of persecution that Christians in communist or Muslim or other religiously controlled countries do already. But when the news continues to report that a man like Donald Trump is the front runner of the Republican party, the party that’s supposed (emphasis on supposed) to be more conservative and moral, I’m very concerned. But there is hope.

2 Chronicles 7:14 says,

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”  (NIV)

The only hope for America today is a sweeping revival like the Great Awakening of the 1700s. Wouldn’t it be funny, a real God thing, if it started on the campus of Berkeley? I guess if the Messiah could come from Nazareth, revival could start in Berkeley.  I do confess, however, that I am a skeptic. Just call me Nathanael.


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