Israeli lawmaker tears up New Testament

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Originally Posted by Blackbanjogirl
I think BOTH parties are in the wrong. Christian missionaries were disrespectful to send this man a NT knowing his beliefs, and he was disrespectful to address it this way. I think he absolutely could have called the missionaries out on this behaviour, but without ripping up a holy book of another faith. However, because it was provoked, I don't see this reaction as being the same as the burning of the Qu'ran, which was not provoked and was in itself an inflammatory action.

I don't believe the Bible is responsible for the suffering of Jews. It is the actions of human beings using the Bible as an excuse/reason that did that - and did that for many other groups of people, including Jews, and many groups that are Christians today and read the Bible.

It appals me that Christian groups today still actively try to convert people of other faiths - have we learned nothing? That is just wrong. And given the recent history of the Jewish people, it should be obvious that that would be an unwelcome and offensive act. I have no time for Christians like that.

I also don't see anything wrong with this as a discussion topic.
Originally Posted by Amneris
It appals you? A Christian's duty is to spread the good news of Jesus Christ. He commanded his apostles to go forth and preach to all nations. What your saying is anti-biblical.

I wouldn't even tear up a Watchtower if it was given to me for show the way this guy did. He was obviously looking to start trouble. Maybe the missionary group was too but his reaction is over the top. Destroying the Holy Book is a serious offense, in ANY religion!
Ugh my phone won't let me edit. Doesn't seem like they were giving him a gift so much as trying to prosthletize. (spelling bad)
Originally Posted by Springcurl
In ancient Judaism, desecrrating the sabbath and other things holy was like damn near a capital offense. And the desecration of Jewish synoguages during "Kristalnacht" is what officially began the Holocaust.

I find it very hard to believe he didn't think descreating a Christian religious item wouldn't incite an uproar.

Gift or no gift, desecrating someone's religious objects is a serious offense and is generally recognized as such.

So he's asking for trouble (esp considering all the support Israel receives from the US).

Just a ahole move all around.
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000
I'm not defending him. I simply think everyone was an a-hole.
curlypearl likes this.


Obamacare is not a blueprint for socialism. You're thinking of the New Testament. ~~ John Fugelsang



I feel that ...

Destroying a holy book of any religion is incredibly disrespectful.

There is no concrete reason for him to be sent a New Testament Bible.

I don't think 'spreading the word of God' should be taken so literally. People have access to information. Don't hide your Christianity, and interested people will come to you. Stay out of everyone else's face.


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Springcurl, NetG, Amneris and 2 others like this.
A sort of OT observation:

I often think religion is just another way humans have of saying "I'm better than you." We have to deal with cancer, famine, hurricanes, etc., but instead of focusing our energies on those sorts of catastrophes, we make monstrous problems out of race, religion, nationality etc. It's beyond stupid and sickening.
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Originally Posted by Blackbanjogirl
I think BOTH parties are in the wrong. Christian missionaries were disrespectful to send this man a NT knowing his beliefs, and he was disrespectful to address it this way. I think he absolutely could have called the missionaries out on this behaviour, but without ripping up a holy book of another faith. However, because it was provoked, I don't see this reaction as being the same as the burning of the Qu'ran, which was not provoked and was in itself an inflammatory action.

I don't believe the Bible is responsible for the suffering of Jews. It is the actions of human beings using the Bible as an excuse/reason that did that - and did that for many other groups of people, including Jews, and many groups that are Christians today and read the Bible.

It appals me that Christian groups today still actively try to convert people of other faiths - have we learned nothing? That is just wrong. And given the recent history of the Jewish people, it should be obvious that that would be an unwelcome and offensive act. I have no time for Christians like that.

I also don't see anything wrong with this as a discussion topic.
Originally Posted by Amneris
It appals you? A Christian's duty is to spread the good news of Jesus Christ. He commanded his apostles to go forth and preach to all nations. What your saying is anti-biblical.

I wouldn't even tear up a Watchtower if it was given to me for show the way this guy did. He was obviously looking to start trouble. Maybe the missionary group was too but his reaction is over the top. Destroying the Holy Book is a serious offense, in ANY religion!
Originally Posted by poisonivy
Poisonivy, spreading the good news of Christ can be done in many ways. Sending Bibles to committed Orthodox Jews still living with the trauma of the Holocaust is not doing that, in my opinion.

St. Francis of Assissi said "preach the gospel at all times, and use words when necessary." Christians can and should show the love of Christ to others in our compassion, love and care for all people regardless of their beliefs, and in respecting their dignity wherever they may be in life. That doesn't mean you force Bibles on people or make them feel uncomfortable or talk at them about your beliefs or what they should or shouldn't believe.

I think that many Christians sorely misunderstand this point and therefore their actions are contrary to what they are trying to accomplish. The bad press that Christians got from this story isn't likely to bring many people to Christ.
Get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me. -Muhammad Ali











I personally don't see what Amneris said as anti-Biblical. Perhaps what she posted doesn't jive with certain people's brand of Christianity but it doesn't make her thoughts anti-Biblical. It's about perspective..people interpret "the Bible" in different ways in Christianity.

Furthermore, Jesus said this:

Luke 9:5 "And as for those who do not receive you, as you go out from that city, shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.

Jews (and Orthodox Jews have really made this clear) have LONG stated that they do not accept the gospel of Christianity. This is no secret..it's a well known fact. In Israel proselytizing is not tolerated which again is no secret to missionaries. So if a Christian really wants to follow "the Bible" they certainly wouldn't send an NT to Israel for an Orthodox Jew...they'd leave them alone unless of course they simply wanted to do something to incite a problem.

According to the Apostle Paul (from which Christianity is most based):
Rom 11:25-29:
I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: "The deliverer will come from Zion; he will turn godlessness away from Jacob. And this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins." As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, They are loved on account of the patriarchs, for God's gifts and his call are irrevocable.

So clearly.. according to the Christian Bible they shouldn't be ignorant of the mystery about Israel (Jacob) because they are elected and loved on the account of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob (the patriarchs) and their place nor gifts will not be taken away. And any person trying to "preach the gospel" probably has come across this once or twice when reading their NT. So going forth and preaching to all nations (which if the NT is to believed was done by the Apostles and disciples) is really moot when it comes to Israel.
I personally don't see what Amneris said as anti-Biblical. Perhaps what she posted doesn't jive with certain people's brand of Christianity but it doesn't make her thoughts anti-Biblical. It's about perspective..people interpret "the Bible" in different ways in Christianity.

Furthermore, Jesus said this:

Luke 9:5 "And as for those who do not receive you, as you go out from that city, shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.

Jews (and Orthodox Jews have really made this clear) have LONG stated that they do not accept the gospel of Christianity. This is no secret..it's a well known fact. In Israel proselytizing is not tolerated which again is no secret to missionaries. So if a Christian really wants to follow "the Bible" they certainly wouldn't send an NT to Israel for an Orthodox Jew...they'd leave them alone unless of course they simply wanted to do something to incite a problem.

According to the Apostle Paul (from which Christianity is most based):
Rom 11:25-29:
I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in. And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: "The deliverer will come from Zion; he will turn godlessness away from Jacob. And this is my covenant with them when I take away their sins." As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, They are loved on account of the patriarchs, for God's gifts and his call are irrevocable.

So clearly.. according to the Christian Bible they shouldn't be ignorant of the mystery about Israel (Jacob) because they are elected and loved on the account of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob (the patriarchs) and their place nor gifts will not be taken away. And any person trying to "preach the gospel" probably has come across this once or twice when reading their NT. So going forth and preaching to all nations (which if the NT is to believed was done by the Apostles and disciples) is really moot when it comes to Israel.
Originally Posted by *Marah*
Interesting perspective, Marah. I actually know some Christians (very fundamentalist/conservative in most ways) who have said something similar about proselytizing in Israel.
Get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me. -Muhammad Ali











If he were given the bible as a gift or an exchange than I'd say it was a rude and tacky thing to do. According to the article he was given the bible by missionaries. A Christian missionary's job is to convert people to Christianity. So they were either (1) actually trying to convert someone lives in Israel, is Jewish and has a very strong sense of his own faith or (2) being downright insulting.

Although in my opinion 1 and 2 are the same.
Originally Posted by Springcurl
But why not just respectfully rufuse the gift/decline the conversion/address the snub?

Why pose for pictures and make a spectacle desecrating a religious text?

What if someone sends him an invitation to attend a service at their church? Should he go to the chuch building and throw rocks at it...bc it was "insulting?"
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000
I'm not surprised by Ben-Ari's reactions. Religious Jews often get super ticked about this sort of thing. It's a whole history behind this that is deep rooted and a sore spot. And I really don't expect non-Jews and in some sense non-religious Jews to fully understand how some Jews take the idea of sending them a NT. Particularly.. sending it to an Israeli Orthodox Jew.

Furthermore, I find it extremely difficult to believe that the person that sent the NT to him didn't know any of this...before hand. I believe it was done to incite rage.
Originally Posted by *Marah*
SC and Marah both put it well. And I think Amneris' post is 100% correct.

If being black were something you could convert from and white people in the US were trying to convert black people telling them that being white is better... I think it would be the same feeling of insult. Certainly to me being Christian is simply not an option because of my beliefs, but if you're Orthodox, living in a country founded after the near-annihilation of your people, with an attempt to eradicate your religion as a significant even leading to it? And you're less than 100 years from those times? Yeah, it's going to be way beyond simply "insulting."
Originally Posted by NetG
You act like that is some far-fetched hypotheticality. White people constantly tell Black people White is better...so much so, they have us halfway believing it.

I'm familiar w/ the practice...believe me. (But it's still a bad analogy bc "race" really can't be changed so anyone who is trying to convince me of the inferiority of mine is doing it out of hate and/or a desire to oppress me.

Converting to Christianity, on the other hand, while obviously a stupid and inconsiderate thing to do in this case, is usually well intentioned, as the converter believes it is the only way to heaven....and wants the person to go to heaven.)

But anyway, people do try to convert me to all kinds of different things, incl. different religions. Who hasn't been targeted by Jehova's Witnesses, Mormons, Hare Krshnas, etc? You politely decline and keep it moving. You don't try to inflame the person by destroying his/her literature and calling a press conference.

Second, the man lives in Israel! The site of religious-based wars for ten thousand years!!! It's not like he's never seen a Bible before. And it's not like he doesn't understand the religious/political climate. He's probably seen members of his own family get their heads blown off for walking down the wrong street or...or just existing. Probably knows a bunch of folks in the Israeli Army who's blown a few heads off, too. Maybe he has, himself, since they all have to serve in the Army. Seeing a Bible really shouldn't be that big of a deal, in the scope of things.

Third, we don't know how the guy got the Bible. His flunkie said <surprise surprise> it was sent to him by a missionary. We don't know that; it wasn't confirmed. Maybe the politician is just an asz who wanted to start a bunch of commotion.
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Last edited by spiderlashes5000; 07-18-2012 at 12:45 PM.
I just got 3 things to say, then I'm out!

1. the lawmaker handled it wrong, but it was even worst on the part of the missionary to send him the book in th efirst part. it was just rude! if he wanted a bible, I'm sure he could had found one.

2. No one should force their own beliefs down someone's throat. I know it "says so it the Bible", but please stop! I know where to find a church if I want to go.

3. So much more I could add, but I will stifle myself and go get some ice cream instead. Its a hot day.
curlypearl likes this.
If he were given the bible as a gift or an exchange than I'd say it was a rude and tacky thing to do. According to the article he was given the bible by missionaries. A Christian missionary's job is to convert people to Christianity. So they were either (1) actually trying to convert someone lives in Israel, is Jewish and has a very strong sense of his own faith or (2) being downright insulting.

Although in my opinion 1 and 2 are the same.
Originally Posted by Springcurl
But why not just respectfully rufuse the gift/decline the conversion/address the snub?

Why pose for pictures and make a spectacle desecrating a religious text?

What if someone sends him an invitation to attend a service at their church? Should he go to the chuch building and throw rocks at it...bc it was "insulting?"
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000
I'm not surprised by Ben-Ari's reactions. Religious Jews often get super ticked about this sort of thing. It's a whole history behind this that is deep rooted and a sore spot. And I really don't expect non-Jews and in some sense non-religious Jews to fully understand how some Jews take the idea of sending them a NT. Particularly.. sending it to an Israeli Orthodox Jew.

Furthermore, I find it extremely difficult to believe that the person that sent the NT to him didn't know any of this...before hand. I believe it was done to incite rage.
Originally Posted by *Marah*
SC and Marah both put it well. And I think Amneris' post is 100% correct.

If being black were something you could convert from and white people in the US were trying to convert black people telling them that being white is better... I think it would be the same feeling of insult. Certainly to me being Christian is simply not an option because of my beliefs, but if you're Orthodox, living in a country founded after the near-annihilation of your people, with an attempt to eradicate your religion as a significant even leading to it? And you're less than 100 years from those times? Yeah, it's going to be way beyond simply "insulting."

That said, I do think it was the incorrect reaction. While I think of the New Testament as a work of fiction personally, I would not show the disrespect to all followers of the religion he did. I just don't think it compares to attacking a religion in the same way Quran burnings do because of the personal insult which instigated it. It was still an incorrect behavior, though.
Originally Posted by NetG
To piggyback on what spidey said, I agree with her that the race analogy doesn't work for me, though I did agree with the rest of your post. White people in the US and elsewhere DO tell Black people, subtly or not, that white is better - it's a constant message that becomes permanently ingrained and internalized in most Black people and it is a message that has been sent throughout history and events not very removed from our time. Surely you know that! Black people can't "convert" to actually being white, but we can be, and are, expected to adopt "white" values, styles, lifestyles etc. in order to succeed and fit in. This is so pervasive that people don't even HAVE to get up in your face about it!
Get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me. -Muhammad Ali











A sort of OT observation:

I often think religion is just another way humans have of saying "I'm better than you." We have to deal with cancer, famine, hurricanes, etc., but instead of focusing our energies on those sorts of catastrophes, we make monstrous problems out of race, religion, nationality etc. It's beyond stupid and sickening.
Originally Posted by curlypearl
This makes no sense, and its completely egotistical.

Why would someone be religious just to say they're better than someone else? What?

I think there are plenty of reasons a person would become religious, and they would only apply to said religious seeking person.

And the last part of the comment is ridiculous as well. Do you buy clothes for yourself? Go to the movies? Watch TV? Go out to dinner? Spend time on the computer? Cause maybe you should spend your time focusing on the tragedies of the world rather than doing all that stuff! - sounds ridiculous doesn't it? People gotta live. Religion makes some people happy. You're not required to participate, and I'm pretty sure its not contributing to the world's catastrophes. People are. Closed minded, opinionated people.


Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I997 using CurlTalk App

But why not just respectfully rufuse the gift/decline the conversion/address the snub?

Why pose for pictures and make a spectacle desecrating a religious text?

What if someone sends him an invitation to attend a service at their church? Should he go to the chuch building and throw rocks at it...bc it was "insulting?"
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000
I'm not surprised by Ben-Ari's reactions. Religious Jews often get super ticked about this sort of thing. It's a whole history behind this that is deep rooted and a sore spot. And I really don't expect non-Jews and in some sense non-religious Jews to fully understand how some Jews take the idea of sending them a NT. Particularly.. sending it to an Israeli Orthodox Jew.

Furthermore, I find it extremely difficult to believe that the person that sent the NT to him didn't know any of this...before hand. I believe it was done to incite rage.
Originally Posted by *Marah*
SC and Marah both put it well. And I think Amneris' post is 100% correct.

If being black were something you could convert from and white people in the US were trying to convert black people telling them that being white is better... I think it would be the same feeling of insult. Certainly to me being Christian is simply not an option because of my beliefs, but if you're Orthodox, living in a country founded after the near-annihilation of your people, with an attempt to eradicate your religion as a significant even leading to it? And you're less than 100 years from those times? Yeah, it's going to be way beyond simply "insulting."
Originally Posted by NetG
You act like that is some far-fetched hypotheticality. White people constantly tell Black people White is better...so much so, they have us halfway believing it.

I'm familiar w/ the practice...believe me. (But it's still a bad analogy bc "race" really can't be changed so anyone who is trying to convince me of the inferiority of mine is doing it out of hate and/or a desire to oppress me.

Converting to Christianity, on the other hand, while obviously a stupid and inconsiderate thing to do in this case, is usually well intentioned, as the converter believes it is the only way to heaven....and wants the person to go to heaven.)

But anyway, people do try to convert me to all kinds of different things, incl. different religions. Who hasn't been targetting by Jehova's Witnesses, Mormons, Hare Krshnas, etc? You politely decline and keep it moving. You don't try to inflame the person by destroying his/her literature and calling a press conference.

Second, the man lives in Israel! The site of religious-based wars for ten thousand years!!! It's not like he's never seen a Bible before. And it's not like he doesn't understand the religious/political climate. He's probably seen members of his own family get their heads blown off for walking down the wrong street or...or just existing. Probably knows a bunch of folks in the Israeli Army who's blown a few heads off, too. Maybe he has, himself, since they all have to serve in the Army. Seeing a Bible really shouldn't be that big of a deal, in the scope of things.

Third, we don't know how the guy got the Bible. His flunkie said <surprise surprise> it was sent to him by a missionary. We don't know that; it wasn't confirmed. Maybe the politician is just an asz who wanted to start a bunch of commotion.
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000
I don't think anyone is obligated to "decline politely" if people attempt to convert them. Generally, that's the easiest approach just because if you react to or argue with them they think you are interested or need help and try to engage you more. But if you come into someone's space or home trying to convert them, you deserve any response you get (other than violence or other unacceptable behaviours.) People are entitled to be rude or confrontational back if they do not want to be approached. People are entitled to give the would-be converter their own holy book, or give them condoms or sex toys or leaflets about Satan or whatever the heck they want. I once read about a guy who was harassed every Saturday morning by Witnesses with Watchtowers, so he started showing up at their Kingdom Hall during worship services and interrupting them to hand out Time magazine.

Destroying a holy book goes beyond that to me because it disrespects other followers of the religion who did not have anything to do with that encounter - but at the end of the day, it is JUST a book. Attempting to convert people directly is, to me, not respectful of the feelings of other people and so it is a bad reflection on the person doing it and if their worship community is commanding them, it's a bad reflection on that entire community. So I can see why someone would WANT to send a message to the whole community in this way.

I do not believe that freedom of religion means, or should mean, that people have the right to try to force their beliefs on others or disturb them in their homes.
Krayt, scrills and thelio like this.
Get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me. -Muhammad Ali











A sort of OT observation:

I often think religion is just another way humans have of saying "I'm better than you." We have to deal with cancer, famine, hurricanes, etc., but instead of focusing our energies on those sorts of catastrophes, we make monstrous problems out of race, religion, nationality etc. It's beyond stupid and sickening.
Originally Posted by curlypearl
This makes no sense, and its completely egotistical.

Why would someone be religious just to say they're better than someone else? What?

I think there are plenty of reasons a person would become religious, and they would only apply to said religious seeking person.

And the last part of the comment is ridiculous as well. Do you buy clothes for yourself? Go to the movies? Watch TV? Go out to dinner? Spend time on the computer? Cause maybe you should spend your time focusing on the tragedies of the world rather than doing all that stuff! - sounds ridiculous doesn't it? People gotta live. Religion makes some people happy. You're not required to participate, and I'm pretty sure its not contributing to the world's catastrophes. People are. Closed minded, opinionated people.


Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I997 using CurlTalk App
Originally Posted by iroc
I took it to mean that some people use religion as a means to say that they are better than others, not that all religious people are doing that just by being religious. People who subscribe to the belief that their particular brand of religion makes them saved or chosen or somehow separated from others who are not, in my opinion, do use religion as a way to feel bigger and better than others. Religious people who don't believe that aren't doing that.

Nor did I take curlypearl's post to mean that people can't enjoy trivial things, but that IF you are going to take up a cause or a belief and spend time on it, trying to convert others etc. why not make that cause doing good? (And many religions and religious people do just that.)
Get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me. -Muhammad Ali














SC and Marah both put it well. And I think Amneris' post is 100% correct.

If being black were something you could convert from and white people in the US were trying to convert black people telling them that being white is better... I think it would be the same feeling of insult. Certainly to me being Christian is simply not an option because of my beliefs, but if you're Orthodox, living in a country founded after the near-annihilation of your people, with an attempt to eradicate your religion as a significant even leading to it? And you're less than 100 years from those times? Yeah, it's going to be way beyond simply "insulting."
Originally Posted by NetG
You act like that is some far-fetched hypotheticality. White people constantly tell Black people White is better...so much so, they have us halfway believing it.

I'm familiar w/ the practice...believe me. (But it's still a bad analogy bc "race" really can't be changed so anyone who is trying to convince me of the inferiority of mine is doing it out of hate and/or a desire to oppress me.

Converting to Christianity, on the other hand, while obviously a stupid and inconsiderate thing to do in this case, is usually well intentioned, as the converter believes it is the only way to heaven....and wants the person to go to heaven.)

But anyway, people do try to convert me to all kinds of different things, incl. different religions. Who hasn't been targetting by Jehova's Witnesses, Mormons, Hare Krshnas, etc? You politely decline and keep it moving. You don't try to inflame the person by destroying his/her literature and calling a press conference.

Second, the man lives in Israel! The site of religious-based wars for ten thousand years!!! It's not like he's never seen a Bible before. And it's not like he doesn't understand the religious/political climate. He's probably seen members of his own family get their heads blown off for walking down the wrong street or...or just existing. Probably knows a bunch of folks in the Israeli Army who's blown a few heads off, too. Maybe he has, himself, since they all have to serve in the Army. Seeing a Bible really shouldn't be that big of a deal, in the scope of things.

Third, we don't know how the guy got the Bible. His flunkie said <surprise surprise> it was sent to him by a missionary. We don't know that; it wasn't confirmed. Maybe the politician is just an asz who wanted to start a bunch of commotion.
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000
I don't think anyone is obligated to "decline politely" if people attempt to convert them. Generally, that's the easiest approach just because if you react to or argue with them they think you are interested or need help and try to engage you more. But if you come into someone's space or home trying to convert them, you deserve any response you get (other than violence or other unacceptable behaviours.) People are entitled to be rude or confrontational back if they do not want to be approached. People are entitled to give the would-be converter their own holy book, or give them condoms or sex toys or leaflets about Satan or whatever the heck they want. I once read about a guy who was harassed every Saturday morning by Witnesses with Watchtowers, so he started showing up at their Kingdom Hall during worship services and interrupting them to hand out Time magazine.

Destroying a holy book goes beyond that to me because it disrespects other followers of the religion who did not have anything to do with that encounter - but at the end of the day, it is JUST a book. Attempting to convert people directly is, to me, not respectful of the feelings of other people and so it is a bad reflection on the person doing it and if their worship community is commanding them, it's a bad reflection on that entire community. So I can see why someone would WANT to send a message to the whole community in this way.

I do not believe that freedom of religion means, or should mean, that people have the right to try to force their beliefs on others or disturb them in their homes.
Originally Posted by Amneris

I'm not saying he has to decline politely. I don't care what he does. I'm just responding more or less to the sentiments on this thread that we shouldn't discuss this or start a "race war" or be outraged by his behavior and "poor him."

This guy showed his asz for all the world to see.

If it made him feel better to get that one off, then good for him!
But he should expect some fallout from this. Like on this board. In his country. Internationally, whatever.
3b (with 3c tendencies) on modified CG


Last edited by spiderlashes5000; 07-18-2012 at 12:57 PM.
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If he were given the bible as a gift or an exchange than I'd say it was a rude and tacky thing to do. According to the article he was given the bible by missionaries. A Christian missionary's job is to convert people to Christianity. So they were either (1) actually trying to convert someone lives in Israel, is Jewish and has a very strong sense of his own faith or (2) being downright insulting.

Although in my opinion 1 and 2 are the same.
Originally Posted by Springcurl
But why not just respectfully rufuse the gift/decline the conversion/address the snub?

Why pose for pictures and make a spectacle desecrating a religious text?

What if someone sends him an invitation to attend a service at their church? Should he go to the chuch building and throw rocks at it...bc it was "insulting?"
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000
I'm not surprised by Ben-Ari's reactions. Religious Jews often get super ticked about this sort of thing. It's a whole history behind this that is deep rooted and a sore spot. And I really don't expect non-Jews and in some sense non-religious Jews to fully understand how some Jews take the idea of sending them a NT. Particularly.. sending it to an Israeli Orthodox Jew.

Furthermore, I find it extremely difficult to believe that the person that sent the NT to him didn't know any of this...before hand. I believe it was done to incite rage.
Originally Posted by *Marah*
SC and Marah both put it well. And I think Amneris' post is 100% correct.

If being black were something you could convert from and white people in the US were trying to convert black people telling them that being white is better... I think it would be the same feeling of insult. Certainly to me being Christian is simply not an option because of my beliefs, but if you're Orthodox, living in a country founded after the near-annihilation of your people, with an attempt to eradicate your religion as a significant even leading to it? And you're less than 100 years from those times? Yeah, it's going to be way beyond simply "insulting."

That said, I do think it was the incorrect reaction. While I think of the New Testament as a work of fiction personally, I would not show the disrespect to all followers of the religion he did. I just don't think it compares to attacking a religion in the same way Quran burnings do because of the personal insult which instigated it. It was still an incorrect behavior, though.
Originally Posted by NetG
What is the comparison to race about? Not the same at all. Surely there are Orthodox Jews who have converted to other religions. I don't get the purpose of bringing that into the discussion as an "example"...

I agree that the evangelist was definitely in the wrong. To respond like this in front of cameras like some photo-op is what angered me. It really is unspeakable. I agree with the others that the politician should have given a response, but not in this way. His religion does not justify this action in any way, IMO.

Again, I don't get why race has been brought into this and what comparison has to being an Orthodox Jew. I mentioned race because I take allegations like that very seriously as someone who experiences prejudice routinely. I chalked it up to her just being troubled because she's the only one I see airing religious intolerence. Yes, just because we happen to be the majority faith in the U.S. does not mean we can't be victims of intolerance. Speaking of, this politician is in Israel where Jewish people are not a minority religion. I can't see it from his perspective and don't see why I should have to try to see it from his perspective. IMO, he's a nutjob and his religion has no bearing one way or the other.
You act like that is some far-fetched hypotheticality. White people constantly tell Black people White is better...so much so, they have us halfway believing it.

I'm familiar w/ the practice...believe me. (But it's still a bad analogy bc "race" really can't be changed so anyone who is trying to convince me of the inferiority of mine is doing it out of hate and/or a desire to oppress me.

Converting to Christianity, on the other hand, while obviously a stupid and inconsiderate thing to do in this case, is usually well intentioned, as the converter believes it is the only way to heaven....and wants the person to go to heaven.)

But anyway, people do try to convert me to all kinds of different things, incl. different religions. Who hasn't been targetting by Jehova's Witnesses, Mormons, Hare Krshnas, etc? You politely decline and keep it moving. You don't try to inflame the person by destroying his/her literature and calling a press conference.

Second, the man lives in Israel! The site of religious-based wars for ten thousand years!!! It's not like he's never seen a Bible before. And it's not like he doesn't understand the religious/political climate. He's probably seen members of his own family get their heads blown off for walking down the wrong street or...or just existing. Probably knows a bunch of folks in the Israeli Army who's blown a few heads off, too. Maybe he has, himself, since they all have to serve in the Army. Seeing a Bible really shouldn't be that big of a deal, in the scope of things.

Third, we don't know how the guy got the Bible. His flunkie said <surprise surprise> it was sent to him by a missionary. We don't know that; it wasn't confirmed. Maybe the politician is just an asz who wanted to start a bunch of commotion.
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000;
To the bold: You just really don't get it at all. It's not the fact that he SAW a Bible. It's what it represents to him as an Israeli Orthodox Jew..the fact that it was sent to him from a Christian missionary.. the NT.

As I said.. the full scope of this sort of thing is often incredibly difficult for non-Jews to comprehend. Much in the same way that it's difficult for white people to fully understand the scope of what it's like being black and all that comes with being black. And yes it's comparable.

Furthermore, being Jewish is not just about Judaism (the religious aspect). There are plenty of BORN Jews that do not practice Judaism and they have still felt the sting of anti-semitism.

You think this Orthodox Jewish Israeli man should have shown respect but where is the respect for him in the first place and what his people have gone through at the hands of the same type of people that profess the very religion that you align yourself with ? To YOU getting a NT in the mail may not be an insult but to him it was a horrific insult and it is to MANY Jews. And it's more than just a simple matter of "Oh Jews don't like the NT".

Your bible teaches: "Do to others as you would have them do to you."

Judaism teaches: "What is hateful to you..do not do to your fellow..that is the whole Torah, the rest is commentary. Now go and learn".

While both these sentences look very similiar they are not.. the implications behind them both are very different. It goes to show you just how far Christianity is from Judaism.

It is not my position that you are being mean or deliberately disrespectful at all but I do think this matter offends you on some level because he tore up YOUR holy book. But bottom line: I just think on this particular subject reguarding Jews and Israel (like white people are on certain issues concerning blacks) that you are incredibly naive to say, "a Bible shouldn't be that big a deal, in the scope of things". You couldn't possibly get it and have posted that..
A sort of OT observation:

I often think religion is just another way humans have of saying "I'm better than you." We have to deal with cancer, famine, hurricanes, etc., but instead of focusing our energies on those sorts of catastrophes, we make monstrous problems out of race, religion, nationality etc. It's beyond stupid and sickening.
Originally Posted by curlypearl
This makes no sense, and its completely egotistical.

Why would someone be religious just to say they're better than someone else? What?

I think there are plenty of reasons a person would become religious, and they would only apply to said religious seeking person.

And the last part of the comment is ridiculous as well. Do you buy clothes for yourself? Go to the movies? Watch TV? Go out to dinner? Spend time on the computer? Cause maybe you should spend your time focusing on the tragedies of the world rather than doing all that stuff! - sounds ridiculous doesn't it? People gotta live. Religion makes some people happy. You're not required to participate, and I'm pretty sure its not contributing to the world's catastrophes. People are. Closed minded, opinionated people.


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Originally Posted by iroc
I took it to mean that some people use religion as a means to say that they are better than others, not that all religious people are doing that just by being religious. People who subscribe to the belief that their particular brand of religion makes them saved or chosen or somehow separated from others who are not, in my opinion, do use religion as a way to feel bigger and better than others. Religious people who don't believe that aren't doing that.

Nor did I take curlypearl's post to mean that people can't enjoy trivial things, but that IF you are going to take up a cause or a belief and spend time on it, trying to convert others etc. why not make that cause doing good? (And many religions and religious people do just that.)
Originally Posted by Amneris
But why make that observation specifically at all? There are people of all walks who consider themselves superior based on their opinions or beliefs, not necessarily having anything to do with religion.

And my analogy was referring to the fact that it is worth fighting for some people. If you're not religious you probably don't understand, but there are some people who are very very serious about it. Why tell them their belief or focus is a waste of time? Who are you (as in anyone) to tell a person that the time they spend on what they highly believe in could better be spent elsewhere?

Some people believe that their beliefs explain tragedies in the world, some think their belief can fix them - regardless how it may sound to you (anyone), its important to them.


If I misunderstood curlypearls comment, I apologize.

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Last edited by iroc; 07-18-2012 at 01:00 PM.

But why not just respectfully rufuse the gift/decline the conversion/address the snub?

Why pose for pictures and make a spectacle desecrating a religious text?

What if someone sends him an invitation to attend a service at their church? Should he go to the chuch building and throw rocks at it...bc it was "insulting?"
Originally Posted by spiderlashes5000
I'm not surprised by Ben-Ari's reactions. Religious Jews often get super ticked about this sort of thing. It's a whole history behind this that is deep rooted and a sore spot. And I really don't expect non-Jews and in some sense non-religious Jews to fully understand how some Jews take the idea of sending them a NT. Particularly.. sending it to an Israeli Orthodox Jew.

Furthermore, I find it extremely difficult to believe that the person that sent the NT to him didn't know any of this...before hand. I believe it was done to incite rage.
Originally Posted by *Marah*
SC and Marah both put it well. And I think Amneris' post is 100% correct.

If being black were something you could convert from and white people in the US were trying to convert black people telling them that being white is better... I think it would be the same feeling of insult. Certainly to me being Christian is simply not an option because of my beliefs, but if you're Orthodox, living in a country founded after the near-annihilation of your people, with an attempt to eradicate your religion as a significant even leading to it? And you're less than 100 years from those times? Yeah, it's going to be way beyond simply "insulting."

That said, I do think it was the incorrect reaction. While I think of the New Testament as a work of fiction personally, I would not show the disrespect to all followers of the religion he did. I just don't think it compares to attacking a religion in the same way Quran burnings do because of the personal insult which instigated it. It was still an incorrect behavior, though.
Originally Posted by NetG
What is the comparison to race about? Not the same at all. Surely there are Orthodox Jews who have converted to other religions. I don't get the purpose of bringing that into the discussion as an "example"...

I agree that the evangelist was definitely in the wrong. To respond like this in front of cameras like some photo-op is what angered me. It really is unspeakable. I agree with the others that the politician should have given a response, but not in this way. His religion does not justify this action in any way, IMO.

Again, I don't get why race has been brought into this and what comparison has to being an Orthodox Jew. I mentioned race because I take allegations like that very seriously as someone who experiences prejudice routinely. I chalked it up to her just being troubled because she's the only one I see airing religious intolerence. Yes, just because we happen to be the majority faith in the U.S. does not mean we can't be victims of intolerance. Speaking of, this politician is in Israel where Jewish people are not a minority religion. I can't see it from his perspective and don't see why I should have to try to see it from his perspective. IMO, he's a nutjob and his religion has no bearing one way or the other.
Originally Posted by Blackbanjogirl
I don't think this is a good example of intolerance towards Christians though, because it is the intolerance OF certain Christians that began this whole episode.

And I don't really believe that Christians in the western world are victims of intolerance. Sure we are in some countries where we are minorities - such as intolerance towards Copts in Egypt. But in the US? I think most of the flak Christians take there are due to the actions of some Christians - and those Christians who do not do those kinds of things or do not agree with them should be the first to speak out about them and distance ourselves from them.
Get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me. -Muhammad Ali











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