Are There “Democratic” and “Republican” Books of the Bible?

July 18 2017

Senator Marco Rubio (or his staff) is in the habit of tweeting biblical verses on a near-daily basis; lately most of these have come from the book of Proverbs. In response, a Yale Divinity School professor of Hebrew Bible penned an essay explaining that this book of Solomonic aphorisms is “the most Republican part of the Bible” and reflects “an almost social-Darwinist worldview.” Charlotte Allen points out that, in fact, Proverbs is “not all diligence and righteousness—in Proverbs, faith in God, too, will keep you away from things like poverty and failure.” Then she proceeds to have some fun at the professor’s expense:

All of this set me to wondering: if the book of Proverbs is the most Republican book in the Bible, what’s the most Democratic book? So I scoured the Good Book and came up with some candidates: . . .

The book of Ruth: “And Naomi had a kinsman of her husband’s, a mighty man of wealth, of the family of Elimelech; and his name was Boaz. And Ruth the Moabitess said unto Naomi, Let me now go to the field, and glean ears of corn after him in whose sight I shall find grace. And she said unto her, Go, my daughter” (Ruth 2:1-2).

A whole congeries of Democratic party themes here, from grabbing what you can from the rich via sky-high taxes to the welfare state (free food!) to possibly illegal immigration (what is Ruth the Moabitess doing in the land of Israel?).

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More about: Bible, Book of Ruth, Marco Rubio, Proverbs, Religion & Holidays, U.S. Politics

 

To Israel’s Leading Strategist, Strength, Not Concessions, Has Brought a Measure of Calm

Aug. 14 2018

Following a long and distinguished career in the IDF, Yaakov Amidror served as Israel’s national-security adviser from 2011 to 2013. He speaks with Armin Rosen about the threats from Gaza, Hizballah, and Iran:

For Israel’s entire existence, would-be peacemakers have argued that the key to regional harmony is the reduction of the Jewish state’s hard power through territorial withdrawals and/or the legitimization of the country’s non-state enemies. In Amidror’s view, reality has thoroughly debunked this line of reasoning.

Amidror believes peace—or calm, at least—came as a result of Israeli muscle. Israel proved to its former enemies in the Sunni Arab world that it’s powerful enough to fill the vacuum left by America’s exit from the region and to stand up to Iran on the rest of the Middle East’s behalf. “The stronger Israel is, the more the ability of Arab countries to cooperate [with it] grows,” Amidror explained. On the whole, Amidror said he’s “very optimistic. I remember the threat that we faced when we were young. We fought the Six-Day War and I remember the Yom Kippur War, and I see what we are facing today. We have only one-and-a-half problems. One problem is Iran, and the half-problem is Hizballah.” . . .

In all likelihood the next Israeli-Iranian confrontation will be a clash with Amidror’s half-threat: the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hizballah, Iran’s most effective proxy in the Middle East and perhaps the best armed non-state military force on earth. . . . “We should neutralize the military capability of Hizballah,” [in the event of war], he said. “We should not destroy the organization as a political tool. If the Shiites want these people to represent them, it’s their problem.” . . .

“It will be a very nasty war,” Amidror said. “A very, very nasty war.” Hizballah will fire “thousands and thousands” of long-range missiles of improved precision, speed, and range at Israeli population centers, a bombardment larger than Israel’s various layers of missile defense will be able to neutralize in full. . . . This will, [however], be a blow Israel can withstand. “Israelis will be killed, no question,” Amidror said. “But it’s not going to be catastrophic.”

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More about: Hizballah, Iran, Israel & Zionism, Israeli Security, Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Lebanon