On a Fox News interview, Dr. Robert Jeffress discusses the protection of houses of Worship after a violent weekend in the United States targeted both Jews and Christians. Dr. Jeffress also discusses the rise in Anti-Semitism and the Christian responsibility to support the Jewish People.
Host – Leland Vittert: This must hit home for a man who speaks at the pulpit every Sunday. Does it change how you do things or is it simply now a fact of life we have to accept?
Jeffress: Well, it doesn’t change what we do because we’ve always had a plan like this church in Texas does. You know Leland, the great hope of the Christian message is that one-day evil will be eradicated from this world when the Lord Returns. But until that time, evil is a reality that has to be confronted and its effects diminished wherever possible. I think every pastor, every rabbi, has a duty to protect his congregants by making sure there’s a plan of action, just like this Texas church had, to deal with acts of violence, when and if they occur.
Host – Leland Vittert: Do you feel as though there is a new threat specific to religious organizations, like this church as we see there, that the shooting happened? We’ll get to anti-Semitism a minute.
Jeffress: There seems to be an increased level of these kinds of threats but you know some of it is attributable to mental illness; that was the case with this Texas shooter, it was involved in the Hanukkah stabbings as well. I think some of it can be attributed to the increase of divisions in our country. But ultimately, Leland, it’s attributable to evil. In-fact, Jack Wilson, the hero who took down the shooter, said he was dealing with evil. That’s the ultimate cause here.
Host – Leland Vittert: What a quiet and humble hero he has been over the past couple of days. That is an example, we don’t get a lot of them in the United States this year.
Jeffress: That’s right, it’s a great story and great example for all of us.
Host – Leland Vittert: Moving now to the idea of the anti-semitic attacks. Those do certainly seem to be targeted on the rise. Nine of them in New York in just the past couple of weeks. Anecdotal evidence that it is on the rise around the country. Do Christians, specifically evangelical Christians, have the responsibility to speak out about anti-semitism in a strong and forceful way?
Jeffress: Absolutely! You know, a couple of weeks ago at the White House, the president signed an executive order about anti-semitism. I was standing next to him when he signed that and before he signed it he asked me to say a few words to the group. I said that both Christians and Jews alike believe what the Bible says in Genesis 12, that God will bless those who bless Israel, He will curse those who curse Israel. When anybody speaks out or assaults the Jewish people, he is really attacking the God of the Jewish people. That’s why evangelical Christians, above all, should be standing with our Jewish brothers and sisters in the faith.
Host – Leland Vittert: We have seen before in history that anti-semitism is the canary in the coalmine, so to speak, to a breakdown in society. Are we seeing that in the United States yet, has the canary started to make its presence known?
Jeffress: I think it may be beginning to chirp right now. Look at 2018, the last records we have, 1800 plus cases of anti-semitic assaults in the United States. That is totally unacceptable and I think we all need to say this is wrong. Again, there’s a spiritual element involved in this Leyland. I mean those of us who believe the Bible, believe in a Satan. Jesus talked about Satan and he has had a plan to destroy the Jewish people from the beginning. We need to make sure that we’re on the right side of history, but more importantly on the right side of God, when it comes to standing with the Jewish people.
Host – Leland Vittert: Real quickly, beyond talking about it as you have just done, eloquently I might add, what is the next step as this anti-Semitism rise appears to be unchecked so far? Is there a responsibility by evangelical groups, such as yourself, to actually do something?
Jeffress: I think there is and I think we need to continue to have dialogue with the Jewish leaders about what we can do to stand beside our Jewish brethren. Whether it’s Prime Minister Netanyahu or other Jewish leaders around the world, they know that the best friends they have in the world are evangelical Christians. But I do think it’s the responsibility of the President as he has been doing.
Host – Leland Vittert: I spent four years in Israel and they will agree with that statement sir, they do view evangelical Christians as their best friends in the United States.