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Christians Must Confront the Weaponization of Genesis 12:3 (Opinion)

In a House education committee hearing Wednesday (April 17) on antisemitism on campus, U.S. Rep. Rick Allen, a Republican from Georgia, used a passage from the Book of Genesis to intimidate the president of Columbia University, insisting that American universities teach their students about “what will happen under the wrath of God” if they do not support Israel.

Allen grossly misappropriated the 12th chapter of Genesis, in which God tells Abraham, who will be the father of the Israelites, “I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse.” At one point, Allen asked the Egyptian-born President Nemat Shafik, “Do you want Columbia University to be cursed by God?” His question not only implied divine judgment against Columbia but also overstepped his legislative role.

Undoubtedly, antisemitism is a horrific prejudice that has led to appalling atrocities. It must be condemned not only at universities but wherever it is found, and I commend the House committee for its efforts to address this issue. However, I strongly condemn the use of the Bible as a tool for shaping U.S. policy or for suppressing civil political debate in academic settings.

When political Christians like Allen claim divine approval for their ideologies or views, they engage in what can be described as spiritual terrorism, using biblical texts to instill fear among non-Christians. This fundamentally contradicts our Christian faith.

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Faithfully Magazine is a fresh, bold and exciting news and culture publication that covers issues, conversations and events impacting Christian communities of color.


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