Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Pence Creates Firestorm Over "Christian Rabbi"

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NBC is reporting that Vice President Pence was "roundly criticized" Monday for "appearing" at a campaign rally in Michigan at which a Messianic rabbi invoked the name of Jesus in his prayer.

NBC then dives into the deep end with a theology lesson---a lesson that appears to throw gas, not water on the reported "firestorm."

Be informed.

The firestorm.

NBC News says VP Pence was "roundly criticized" for appearing at a campaign rally at which a "'Messianic rabbi' invoked Jesus, in mourning the deaths of 11 people at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh."

They say, "Pence, who has often proclaimed himself to be a born-again evangelical Christian, invited Rabbi Loren Jacobs to the stage at a rally in Waterford Township in a suburb of Detroit, for Lena Epstein, a Republican candidate for the open congressional seat in Michigan's 11th District."

NBC emphasizes that "Messianic Judaism, which believes that Jesus is the messiah and considers the New Testament to be authentic, is not recognized as Jewish by any mainstream Jewish movement in the United States, or by the Chief Rabbinate, the supreme spiritual authority for Judaism in Israel."

Rabbi Jacobs is the founder and senior rabbi of Congregation Shema Yisrael in Bloomfield Hills. It is indeed a Messianic congregation and he did invoke the "God of Abraham, God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, God, and Father of my Lord and Savior Yeshua, Jesus the Messiah, and my God and Father too."

NBC explains that "Yeshua"---derived from the Greek spelling that eventually became "Jesus" in English---is the name by which many Messianic Jews refer to Jesus.

And the peacock channel further explains that the Messianic Jews believe that "Jesus the Messiah was eternally pre-existent and is co-equal with God the Father."

This is the video of his prayer.

Vice President Pence had heard the rabbi pray backstage, and thought it would be good to have him share the prayer on stage, so he invited him to the podium.


People immediately began excoriating Pence for being "insensitive"---calling it a "deliberate insult."

Orli Matlow tweeted: "Mike Pence's rabbi= Fake Jews."

Rafael Shimunov tweeted, "In response to antisemitic white nationalist attack, Vice President Pence opens campaign event with a Christian Rabbi."

And it got worse.

The candidate for whom Pence was campaigning, Lena Epstein, defended Pence saying it was she who invited the rabbi to the event, not Vice President Pence.

Yesterday, she put out a press release which said in part, "My family's history as Jews and my commitment to my Jewish faith are beyond question. I'm a proud lifelong 4th generation member---former board member---of Temple Beth El."

There's more, but she concluded with this: "I am proud of my faith and look forward to serving as the only Jewish Republican woman in Congress."

She also told the press, "Any media or political competitor who is attacking me or Vice President Pence is guilty of nothing short of religious intolerance and should be ashamed."

The press and the Left are guilty of religious intolerance, but they're not ashamed because tolerance and intolerance is a tool in their arsenal.

There is no tolerance for those who sincerely hold biblical beliefs that conflict with secular progressive ideologies; Whether it concerns the sanctity of life, human sexuality, marriage...or Jewishness.

The cold calculated culture of outrage.

With the rise of this new "intolerance," the Left is exemplifying what leftist leader Henry Adams described as "Politics: the systematic organization of hatreds."

Cultural outrage did not happen spontaneously, or overnight...or as a result of Donald Trump being elected president.

It happened through the course of several generations.

Herbert Marcuse was an immigrant from Germany who taught at a number of US universities. Marcuse was a member of the Marxist-influenced Frankfurt School, which wanted to deconstruct Western Capitalism. Though he opposed Fascism, Marcuse believed that industrialized capitalist democracies of the mid-20th century were themselves repressive.

He became one of the leading gurus of the New Left, the angry, sometimes violent 1960s radicals who were the forerunners to the current "progressive" power elite.

Obama's friend, Bill Ayers, who founded the Weather Underground domestic terrorist group, became known for bombing federal buildings. Ayers later became a university professor.

Marcuse intellectually birthed people like Angelia Davis, Michael Lerner, the SDS, and a host of others who gave birth to phrases and concepts like "politics of meaning"---a phrase Hillary Clinton often used in the 1990s and has again used recently.

Barack Obama's worldview was shaped by the teaching of Marcuse, Saul Alinsky and his pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

Marcuse's students are found across the landscape of American culture today---especially in American public schools and universities, and in American politics.

By 2015, the so-called "progressive Left" was fully aware that cultural Marxism had taken hold, with a complicit President Obama, a dutiful press and an uninformed public.

In fact, it was during this time that the Left actually became concerned that the monster they had created, may turn on those who gave it birth because they were not far enough to the Left.

Establishment Democrats are currently dealing with that problem.

At that time, Fred Bauer wrote an excellent article describing what was happening. His article was titled, "The Left And Discriminating Tolerance".

Bauer explained how Marcuse's then 50-year-old essay, "Repressive Tolerance," levies a radical attack on the conventions of liberal democratic civilization.

He described the main thrust of this Repressive Tolerance like this:

"The whole of society shapes what is politically possible for each of us, so any discussion of politics must attend to society as a whole," he says.

Group think.

However, Marcuse saw society as completely corrupted. More sin and corruption seemed to be his answer.

In his 1955 book titled, "Eros and Civilization," he considered the breaking of all sexual norms to be a key component of toppling the Western status quo.

Woodstock would follow.

He taught a kind of social or moral inversion: The fact that society is so radically unequal means that we should be intolerant and repressive in the name of tolerance and liberty.

He rejected what he termed "indiscriminate tolerance"---a tolerance that accepts all viewpoints---in favor of "liberating tolerance" or "discriminating tolerance."

In essence, he put it this way:
"Liberating tolerance, then, would mean intolerance against movements from the Right and toleration of movements from the Left."

During the Bush era, the Left said: "Dissent is patriotic." During the Obama era, the same Left said: "Dissent is caused by some unhealthy motivation like racism."

Now, during the Trump era, "Dissent is Patriotic." But dissent has become rage and violence from the Left.

Marcuse's case for "repression" has given us our current culture---at least the culture of those on the Left.

His repression applies to thought, conscience, speech, and science---in the name of right ideas, and it has persuaded powerful people and organizations within our culture today.

Prominent leaders, therefore, call for "impeachment" of President Trump, because it's the right thing to do---not because he has committed any crime. They call for criminal prosecution, even imprisonment for those who even question anthropogenic "climate change."

Anyone who dissents from some prevailing orthodoxy of the Left is to be assailed, mobbed, driven from restaurants, confronted, shouted down, kicked out of office---or even targeted by government agencies.

Bakers who decline to celebrate homosexual "marriage" are driven out of business by demonstrators in front of their store and targeted by government agencies for discrimination or even hate crimes.

Pence has been attacked because he had the wrong kind of Jew at the podium. Yesterday, when President Trump visited Pittsburgh to pay his respects, mobs shouted at him and held signs that read "It's Your Fault. Words Matter."

We have departed from our founding tradition of tolerance as taught by 17th century Puritan Roger Williams who taught tolerance out of a respect for human limitations and a recognition of inherent individual dignity.

Today, the culture is led not by those who are motivated to create a more perfect union, but by those who are committed to deconstructing the greatest nation in the history of the world.

Be Informed. Be Discerning. Be Vigilant. Be Prayerful.


  1. Is not this an example of the Marxist Dialectic? Was not Marx Jewish? Was not Marcuse Jewish? Was not Saul Alinsky Jewish? Are not most American Jews more loyal to Marxist ideology than to Rabbinic Hebraism? I would also point to David Horowitz, former leader of the New Left, and now suppressed enemy number one of the New Left, and to Joel Rosenstein, broker of works of peace between Evangelical Christians, Moderate Muslims, and the Jewish culture of Aliyah, return to the promised land. Judah was a son of Jacob, a great grandson of Abraham, and a blood relative of Ishmael and Esau, the fathers of the Arabs. The intense working out Jewish ideological worldviews can only be said to be stunning and cataclysmic. This election is baring the thoughts of many hearts. Its import is global.

  2. Just who is 'Orli Matlow' and why does (she?) have any significance? I would assume her(?) great education and experience would be available online, but I can not find anything about her education or experience. Presumable she(?) is yet another ignorant person who likes to pretend she has significance. Sounds like a great many voices on the Left.

  3. Dear Gary,

    As someone who has lived and worked in Jewish community for years, in an area that is dominated by conservative evangelicalism, I'd like to shed some light on this controversy from a mainstream Jewish perspective.

    The vast majority of American Jews see Messianic Judaism as a misnomer. Theologically, belief in Jesus as messiah and savior is Christianity, from a Jewish perspective (and, indeed, from a Christian one, as I understand it). Also, many American Jews have experienced, over the years, proselytizing from Christians, often of the conservative evangelical variety, and from some Messianic Jews. Some of this proselytizing was fairly gentle; some either implied or outright stated that we're going to hell if we don't accept Jesus. So a significant percentage of American Jews may have a lot of "baggage" when it comes to evangelicalism in general and particularly what they see as an illegitimate appropriation of Jewish words, traditions, and rituals by Messianic Jews.

    Finally, as the grandson of a Holocaust survivor and son of a Holocaust scholar, I know that through millennia of persecution many, many Jews have felt pressure to renounce their Jewish beliefs and identity and convert to Christianity to (supposedly) ensure their safety from persecution. God knows how many Jews have died because they refused to do so. Thus, for Messianic Jews to imply that it's possible to be Jewish and also believe in Jesus as savior, after thousands of years of Jews dying because they wouldn't renounce or hide who they were and what they believed, can feel like a slap in the face and, more to the point, a lie.

    I should conclude by saying that I do not feel personal animus toward Messianic Jews as people. I have met a number of them over the years and have found them to be generous and kind. But I wanted to explain why many American Jews, and really Jews worldwide, might be offended by the appearance of a Messianic "rabbi" (many Jews would also use the scare quotes). I hope I have do so, for your benefit and that of your readers.

    Neal Schindler

    1. The reason Jews don't have to stop being Jewish if they believe in Jesus, is because Jesus is Jewish. It is more that gentiles who believe in Jesus also come to believe in the Hebrew scriptures, that we call the Old Testament, the old covenant God had with Abraham, which He still honors. The Jews will always be the apple of God's eye. The new covenant was made when God sent Jesus, and instead of the yearly sacrifices for sins, Jesus was the sacrifice for the sins of the whole world, to the Jew first, and then to the gentile. God will never fail Israel, we have seen this with Queen Esther, the 6 day War, and on and on how God has blessed the Jews, but God throughout the Jewish scriptures has revealed to the Jewish people that Jesus would come and die for their sins. Especially in the book of Isaiah, which I have heard has been removed from the readings in the synagogue because it points to Jesus in chapter 53, more than other scriptures. But it is easy to find if one searches for it and asks God to reveal it. No Christian wants a Jew to stop being Jewish. We have our Savior because of the Jewish history. We wouldn't have knowledge of God without the faithful God inspired old testament writings. People calling themselves Christians did many terrible things in the name of Christianity, but were wolves in sheep's clothing. And I don't believe the Pope is a Christian either, because of what he is saying and doing. Nobody wants to use scare tactics, but to not tell someone that there is a heaven and a hell when you know there is, would be wrong, and to not tell them that God's new sacrifice is Jesus, and His sacrifice is once for all who will believe on Him, would be wrong.One must believe that their sins have been cleansed, because a perfect, sinless, God man was willing to leave glory and lay down his life, because no one else could, and the blood of bull's and goats was ultimately unable to satisfy a Holy God's wrath against our sinfulness. But God, in man's flesh could satisfy GOD, because He did it Himself so no man could take credit for God's salvation.

  4. Tolerance and intolerance as weapons--who would have believed it? Thank you once again for your well-written and articulate message.

  5. As a Messianic Jew who has had the opportunity to meet both VP Pence and Loren Jacobs over the years, I am well-acquainted with the spiritual and political dynamics operating in this incident. I believe that the antisemitism that has been perpetrated against my Jewish brethren throughout history has contributed to the scales over their eyes, that the apostle Paul prayed would fall off. I would add that their eyes be opened to see that the current administration is for them and the State of Israel...and not against them.

  6. The candidate is a Jewish woman. She and Pence apparently confabbed after hearing his unifying prayer, and invited him to pray again, on stage, and into a mic. Last time I checked we live in a free country. ?? Now, not necessarily having a traditional rabbi available, this gentleman prayed. This, like so much else, is being used by the left to divide and conquer using rancor, and course and raw identity politics.

    Ultimatley Jews themselves can decide whether they appreciate prayers from non-Jews, or messianic Jews to be helpful during thus time, or not.

    I'm guessing many do think so, and the Pittsburgh Rabbi of Tree of Life Synagogue even defended President Trump's and Mrs. Trump's visit.

    But the left won't have it and must scream and screech, for their supposed political advantage. So what began as an innocent, in the moment gesture, has become another childish attempt by the Democrats to take political advantage and everything, including the sacred, including the death of people at the hands of a madman.

    Neal, this is not to take anything away from your point of view but simply to suggest that maybe would Pence did was in the moment and what was available at that very juncture. And had nothing to do with being offensive.


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