Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Musalaha - an organization worth checking out

Musalaha is a non-profit organization that seeks to promote reconciliation between Israelis and Palestinians as demonstrated in the life and teaching of Jesus. We endeavor to be an encouragement and advocate of reconciliation, first among Palestinian and Israeli believers and then beyond to our respective communities. Musalaha also aims at facilitating bridge building among different segments of Israeli and Palestinian societies according to biblical reconciliation principles.
Do people know of other, similar organizations?

Update: They also have a new blog: Musalaha's Musings. Their posts are sporadic at the moment but they hope to change that. The first is an excerpt from the youth leadership training seminar for youth leaders in the West Bank. It emphasises the importance for youth leaders of practicing what they preach, as youth tend to justify their actions on the basis of those of their leaders. Palestine really does need decent leaders.

7 comments:

John Anderson said...

There are many similar organizations. One of which I am aware:

ICAHD (Israli Committee Against House Demolitions) - they resist the occupation by working to rebuild Palestinian homes that have been destroyed by Israel.

An important figure to be aware of, also, is Jeff Halper. I have a little pamphlet he wrote entitled "Israel-Palestine: Apartheid or Confederation."

Phil Sumpter said...

Thanks for the tips, John. When I find the time I'd like to look into that some more. Are you aware of anything that gets Jews and Palestians together for mutual understanding and reconciliation? What I like about this organization is my (undoubtedly contentious!) belief that the gospel actually makes a difference.

For an example of work against this effort, see this.

Daniel said...

Hello Philip, new to your interesting blog (and blogging). I am wondering about your interest in Israel. Does that interest include study of the Talmud? In your studies have you had the occasion or interest to study Emmanuel Levinas, or Scholem, or Cohen, or other Jewish phiosophers/theologians? Is your interest in Israel largely political or theological or sentimental (in the fullest sense of the word, or all 3 and more! What is your thinking about the relationship between Judaism and Christianity. well, enough ??? for now. look fwd to reading your blog, blessings on your studies, obliged, daniel

wanted to backchannel this but didn't know how.

Phil Sumpter said...

Hi Daniel,

wow, those are a lot of questions ... I will endeavour to answer them shortly. Thanks for popping by.

Phil Sumpter said...

Hi Daniel,

to your questions:

Does that interest include study of the Talmud?

I should point out that Israel per se is not what I'm studying. I'm in OT and am looking at Brevard Childs' canonical approach and attempting to apply it to Psalm 24 (see my research proposal, where I was originally planning to do Psalm 15 too). For that, using the Talmud will be important, as I will have to take into account the history of interpretation (and it will no doubt aid my own interpretation). But Talmud per se is not part of my studies.

I would, however, love to get into Talmud in my free time (if I had any!). I adore Jewish Studies and almost switched to the subject during my BA. I stuck with cultural anthropology instead.

In your studies have you had the occasion or interest to study Emmanuel Levinas, or Scholem, or Cohen, or other Jewish phiosophers/theologians?

Again, not really so much part of my studies. They would actually be releveant (especially Levinas, and also Neusner), but the theoretical bits over for me now and I'm focussing on Psalm 24. Again, at some point, when I have time, I would like to read them. I especially have a soft spot for Levinas, as I have been influenced by Evangelical scholars who are open to postmodernism. Bruce Ellis Benson, for example, is inspired by Jean Luc Marion, who in turn takes his que from Levinas. I've posted some stuff on Jewish/Christian approaches to Scripture in, for example, Jesus and Jewish tradition or Jewish and Christian appropriation of the Law of Moses. All posts tagged "Judaism" are here.

Is your interest in Israel largely political or theological or sentimental (in the fullest sense of the word, or all 3 and more!

All three! How and why are complex and would involve me recounting my personal biography, psychologically and faith.

What is your thinking about the relationship between Judaism and Christianity

I posted a kind of series on this already (informed by my reading of Brevard Childs), so feel free to interact there: The Judge of Church and Synagogue, Who are Abraham's heirs?, and The task of Jewish Christian dialogue.

Please do stay in touch. This blog is there for interactoin

Daniel said...

Thanks so much for your response. I am unfamiliar with Childs and i am going to give him a look, as well as checking out the series you suggested. I have been looking for a blog that centers around Rosenzweig, Levinas, Benjamin, Talmud etc. but haven't found one. If you come across anything please let me know. Glad to have stumbled onto your site though, thanks, obliged, daniel

Phil Sumpter said...

On my side bar is a blogroll dedicated to Jewish blogs. I'm sure you'll find something there. Click on "read more" to get an overview of all the options. For blogs on Levinas the following two may be helpful: http://ericroorback.wordpress.com/ and http://hacu259.wordpress.com/.