T.S. Eliot wrote, “And the end of all our exploring / Will be to arrive where we started / And know the place for the first time.” “That place,” says Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein at The Velvet Kippah, “for many Christians today, is looking more Jewish all the time.”
The more Christians learn about Jewish pain, persecution, and suffering, Rabbi Alderstein argues, the more it seems they are peering into a mirror. The tables have turned, and Christian persecution has succeeded, numerically, that of Jews.
While Jews feel threatened by the massive explosion of global anti-Semitism in the last years, coupled with Iranian and Islamist calls for the genocidal destruction of all Jews, very few Jews in 2013 are dying because of their faith or their roots. Christians, on the other hand, have become the New Jews.
In a huge swath of territory from Nigeria east and north to Iran and Pakistan, millions of Christians live in fear of losing their property or their lives simply because they are Christians. In the Assyrian Triangle of Iraq, the campaign of church-burning, clergy-killing, and terror has all but decimated the historically oldest Christian communities. Egypt’s Copts, a full 10 percent of her population, treated for decades as second-class citizens, now face an even more uncertain future as Egypt’s constitution moves the country closer to Sharia.
Christians today have learned what it is to be foreigners in their own land. They have learned to keep mute about their belief to protect their loved ones. They have become the “scorned stepchild within general culture . . . mocked and derided, and treated as intellectual pygmies who have nothing to offer the better, more enlightened people around them.”
They have also, along with their Jewish brethren, held strong to their belief “that if you are fortunate enough to possess the truth, you do not compromise or sacrifice it, even if it means that you continue on only as [a] tiny fleck of mankind.”