Palestinian pastor Reverend Munther Isaac has criticized what he calls the hypocrisy and racism of the Western world, saying Gaza has become the moral compass of the world.
Delivering his Christmas message to the congregation at the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Bethlehem on Saturday, Reverend Isaac said what would have been a time of joy, is instead a time of “mourning, we are fearful.”
“Gaza, as we know it, no longer exists,” he said. “This is an annihilation. This is genocide.”
He said: “We are tormented by the silence of the world,” adding that “leaders of the so-called free lined up one after the other to give the green light for this genocide against a captive population.”
“Not only did they make sure to pay the bill in advance, they (also) veiled the truth and context providing the political cover,” he added. The “theological cover”, he said, was provided with the “Western church” stepping into the spotlight.
Amongst the congregation was an international delegation of Christian leaders, who are spending Christmas in Bethlehem in solidarity with the Palestinian people.
South Africans, he said, “taught us the concept of state theology; defined as the theological justification of the status quo with its racism, capitalism and totalitarianism.”
It does so, he explained, by misusing theological concepts and biblical texts for its own political purposes.
“Here in Palestine the bible is weaponized against us, our very own sacred text.”
Theology of Empire
He added, “Here we confront the theology of empire, a disguise for superiority, supremacy, chosen-ness, and entitlement.”
“The theology of the empire becomes a powerful tool to mask oppression under the cloak of divine sanction,” the reverend said.
He explained that “It speaks of land without people. It divides people into us and them. It dehumanizes and demonizes. The concept of land without people again even though they knew too well the land had people. And not just any people, a very special people.”