As Clout Grows, Knesset Christian Allies Caucus Reconvenes for Israel’s Diamond Anniversary
05-05-2023 CBN News Jerusalem Chris Mitchell
JERUSALEM, Israel – This week, members of Israel’s Knesset and Christian leaders representing millions of Christians around the world met in Israel’s parliament. The historic collaboration is having an impact on nations around the world.
Now in its 19th year, the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus came together to celebrate Israel’s diamond anniversary.
“The significance of the relaunch (following COVID restrictions) of the Knesset Christian Caucus is that we’ve all come together to celebrate 75 years in Israel, Christian Allies Caucus Executive Director Josh Reinstein told CBN News. “The caucus basically runs year-round, but once a year we always come together and discuss what are the issues that are important to us and how we can better work together to promote what we call faith-based diplomacy.”
Reinstein said faith-based diplomacy is a powerful tool for defending the Jewish state.
“Faith-based diplomacy is when people who believe in the Bible get involved in the political process; when they take their biblical support and turn into real political action,” he explained.
He added, “Today, faith-based diplomacy is the most important weapon that Israel has in its diplomatic arsenal. It’s the reason there are embassies in Jerusalem. Again, it’s the reason there’s anti-BDS legislation around the world. It’s the reason we have observer status in the African Union. It’s because Christians are getting involved with the political process and letting their representatives know that standing with Israel is a priority.”
Knesset member Sharren Haskel, one of the caucus co-chairs, believes this Jewish-Christian collaboration is extremely important. She considers Christian communities around the world to be Israel’s “greatest allies.”
“They are bringing out to the world the message, the truth about Israel,” Haskel said. “We live today in a world where it’s so easy to spread propaganda and lies through social media. Sometimes even, you know, mainstream media. And so when they (Christians) are so dedicated in coming here, seeing here, being active in anything that happens here in the holy land, and they see the reality where Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East, it’s a democracy, a stable one that brings the message of freedom and equality and rights to its citizens – all of its citizens – then they can combat this propaganda, and these lies.”
She continued, “And our goal here is to try and build bridges between Israel and the Jewish community, and Christian communities around the world. I mean, Christian community have a reach of millions of people around the world. And I think that this is part of the only way we are capable of fighting this propaganda.”
The Christian Allies Caucus has more than 50 caucuses in parliaments around the world, consisting of 1,200 legislators. The largest caucus is on Captiol Hill in Washington. Reinstein says the men and women there are making a difference, such as in the move of the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
“It was a faith-based initiative. It took 14 years to occur, but it only happened once Christians made it a priority,” Reinstein stated. “Also, what we’ve seen is in, in different places around the world, we’re seeing legislation resolutions, hearings on a number of different agenda items, and these are all being pushed from Christians.”
He added, “When you look at the success that Israel has diplomatically around the world, 90% of it has come through faith-based diplomacy. So it’s really astounding the success of this new movement.”
Juergen Buehler is director of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ). He sees the collaboration as monumental.
“You know, what’s happening here today in this hall, it’s nothing (short of) historic. For the first time, Jews and Christians are collaborating to work together on behalf of Israel, but also there are a lot of subjects emerging right now that might even affect other nations. That will be for the blessing of other nations. So it’s a historic time. For the first time in 2000 years, Jews and Christians are working together, collaborating to bring a blessing to the whole world,” Buehler said.
The ICEJ is working with the caucus in Europe.
Buehler noted, “Three or four of our branches in Europe are partnering with the caucus, to change the Labeling Act law. The European Union is labeling all the products that come from the West Bank. You have to know, (this means) only Jewish products, not Palestinian or Arab products. So (it) imitates a deja vu – what happened 75, 80 years ago in Germany – where Jewish products were labeled in a very bad way. And we want to make sure together with the caucus that this will not repeat itself.”
Broadcaster and journalist Earl Cox has seen this collaboration between Israelis and Christians grow for years.
“I’m usually here about five months out of the year, and when I come, I see so much happening here that just excites me so much that Christians, evangelical Christians are supporting the state of Israel,” Cox told CBN News. “As you very well know, 0.2%, if I’m not mistaken – but you put all the Jews together in the world, that’s all it is. But if you look at us who are in the evangelical community, there are hundreds of millions of us and that’s why it’s so important that we stand with the state of Israel right now, not tomorrow, but right now.”
During the meeting, many Knesset members came to thank the Christian leaders.
“We don’t and we cannot take for granted the incredible support that we receive from this community,” Haskel said. Every time I meet Christian supporters from around the world, it expands my heart, really in understanding to what extent they are dedicated in helping and defending us, what an incredible bond we have between those two communities. So, if I can add just an incredible thank you to our Christian friends.”
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