The following statement was approved by the Executive Presbytery of the Assemblies of God.
Within three generations of the Holocaust and the genocide that extinguished six million Jewish lives, including 1.5 million children, the scourge of antisemitism is again increasing worldwide. The General Council of the Assemblies of God recognizes the insidious nature of racism that affects all racial and socially marginalized groups and condemns such sin. The Assemblies of God specifically recognizes the unique history and targeting of Jewish people that have plagued societies and the Church for thousands of years. Recent social, political, and economic upheaval has led to increased targeting of the Jewish world. Criminal antisemitic attacks on American Jews have likewise increased while many religious institutions have ignored the growing danger. The 117th U.S. Congress, on May 18th, 2022, understood the present threat of antisemitism and passed HR 1125 condemning rising antisemitism in all its forms.
Ancient antisemitism, which unfortunately found strong support among the Greek, Latin, and Roman Church fathers, found dramatic renewal in Western civilization with the Jewish catastrophes associated with the Crusades, the Inquisition, and European nationalism. The culmination of theological errors and social frustration coalesced to periodically destroy tens of thousands of Jewish lives. The Holocaust (Shoah), just three generations ago, became the most recent and largest Jewish catastrophe done in the Christian West.
The General Council of the Assemblies of God has long blessed the Jewish people: (1) with its profound 1927 and 1961 Article 14 theological tenet. Article 14 prophetically embraced the “salvation of national Israel;” (2) with its celebration and widespread publicity of significant numbers of Jewish people coming to faith in Messiah Jesus since the 20th-century inception of the modern Pentecostal movement; and (3) with its post-Holocaust adoption of a resolution at the 1945 General Council condemning all forms of antisemitism. The Pentecostal Evangel later reported the statement of then General Superintendent E. S. Williams that warned Christian preachers against perpetuating any ongoing antisemitism.
As in times past, the General Council of the Assemblies of God senses an urgency to show unequivocal support of the Jewish people by repudiating every source, vehicle, or channel of antisemitism, and making clear to all people our stand against antisemitism, and all forms of racism against any ethnic group. The Assemblies of God purposes to confront hatred, verbal abuse, negative stereotypes, conspiracy theories, propaganda, and attacks on the lives of Jewish people. Additionally, the Assemblies of God purposes to address antisemitic theological paradigms and reject any fabrication that the New Testament is anti-Jewish. We resolve to biblically bless the Jewish people as we anticipate and pray for their full spiritual redemption (Genesis 12:1-3; Romans 11:25-26).
Photo by Cole Keister on Unsplash.