• February 12, 2005
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    Benny Elon reaches out to evangelicals
Benny Elon reaches out to evangelicals

Not many members of Knesset have written a book. Fewer still have written a book in English. And only one has written a book in English especially for evangelical Christians.

National Union MK Benny Elon, who is an Orthodox rabbi, will present his new book, God's Covenant with Israel: Establishing Biblical Boundaries in Today's World, on Monday at the National Religious Broadcasters convention in Anaheim, California.

The convention is expected to draw more than 6,000 Christian communicators from all over the world, who broadcast to the 141 million Christian Americans who tune in to religious media on a regular basis.

A Jerusalem bus that exploded in a terrorist attack will be on display at the convention to encourage prayer for peace in Jerusalem and remind participants that terror can strike anywhere.

Elon, who has had ties with evangelical Christians for several years, is set to meet at the convention with a who's who of Christian evangelists and broadcasters, including Pat Robertson, Kay Arthur, and Janet Parshall. Elon told The Jerusalem Post that he does not believe it is odd that a Knesset member and a rabbi wrote a book especially for American Christians.

"The state hasn't done enough to reach out to our strategic partners, the Christian lovers of Israel," Elon said. "Whoever knows the Bible is aware that our role is to be a light unto the nations, so it is our responsibility to reach out to the Christians as part of our redemption process."

Elon blamed the lack of outreach to Christians on a combination of the troubled history of Christian anti-Semitism, an exaggerated fear of missionaries and what he called "the cynical political reasons of people not on the Right." He said that as a rabbi, he had no problem talking to evangelicals, because "I am secure with my Judaism and I know who my messiah is."

The book, which focuses on the religious and historic ties between the state of Israel and the Jewish people, is set to reach bookshelves across America in April, just in time for the struggles expected in the summer over Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's unilateral disengagement plan. Thousands of Christians are expected to come to Israel to protest the Gaza Strip withdrawal.

In a chapter on the political situation in Israel, Elon reminds readers that Gaza is mentioned in the Bible more than 20 times and that the prophets Jeremiah, Amos, Zephaniah and Zachariah prophesied about Gaza.

"Gaza was clearly part of the biblical land grant to Israel and God has a plan for Gaza and its inhabitants in the future," Elon wrote. "As the preparations for this withdrawal increase, please keep the inhabitants of Gaza and northern Samaria in your hearts and prayers. The people of the book have a responsibility to uphold and protect the covenant between God and Israel."

The book highlights anti-Christian theology in Islam and contains a list of Palestinian Authority brutality toward Christians. A picture on the back cover of the book shows Muslims praying on the Temple Mount with their backs to Jerusalem, while others show Arabs destroying Joseph's Tomb in Nablus.

"The Christians are undergoing revolutions in their philosophy about Israel and the Jewish people and we aren't showing them appreciation and involving them in our struggle against the Muslims," Elon said. "When the Muslims see that the enlightened Christian world is on our side, this will decrease the Muslim motivation to destroy us."