During this Christmas period St James’s Church, Piccadilly have erected an 8-metre tall concrete wall as part of the project “Bethlehem Unwrapped” where they aim to highlight the modern-day situation for inhabitants of the ancient town of Bethlehem.
Whilst we are equally concerned with the difficult circumstances facing the Palestinians in Bethlehem, this particular stunt is nothing but a politically motivated attempt to make Israel out as the villain in this complex situation. We suspect that this bias is strongly influenced by the “replacement theology” and “supersessionism” that is rampant in the Church of England. No doubt, as a result of the wall, this church will become a hub of anti-semitic sentiment and a distorted presentation of “facts” surrounding the wall in Bethlehem.
Kay Wilson, a survivor of a brutal attack at the hands of two Palestinians, writes to St. James’s Church expressing her feelings of the wall – St James’s Church, I hate your hatred.
Also, author Melanie Phillips has written an open letter – A church of hate – to the Archbishop of Canterbury to express her concern that this church is so dramatically taking this stance on this issue and to appeal to him to counter this – we can hope that he will exert Biblical leadership over this, but we won’t hold our breath!
If you are unsure what Scripture says concerning the Church and Israel, read our Replacement Theology – Has the Church replaced Israel? article.