Pray for peace
From John Piper's column, I understood for the first time in my life how to look at the Israeli-Palestinian dispute in a godly manner ("Land divine?" May 11). Both groups of people deserve a place to work and raise their families in peace and security. As a result of this article, I will be praying in a new way for the Mideast crisis, for both Jewish and Palestinian hearts to be softened to receive the gospel of Jesus Christ, and that the land issue will be settled in a compassionate and just way. - Joan G. Martin, Marietta, Ga.
I was so glad for John Piper's column on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I was totally for Israel and their actions, but I was not sure about how to take the Palestinians' position. Thanks for a biblical response. - Phil Martin, Urbana, Ohio
I must disagree with John Piper's assessment about Israel's divine right to the holy land. I think it is quite possible that God's promise to restore Israel was fulfilled in 1948, and that God's purpose for the United States in world history is to support Israel. - William J. Wright, Oklahoma City, Okla.
That was a wonderful article by John Piper. Evangelicals have rushed headlong over the last half-century into a Zionism based on a knee-jerk application of prophecy to headline news. As Mr. Piper's article points out, the biblical-theological reality paints a vastly different scenario. Christian Zionism betrays our born-again Palestinian Christian brethren suffering under the regimes of that land while allying itself to one political power. - Joseph Ng, Singapore
I strongly disagree with John Piper that Israel has no spiritual rights at this time to the land of Israel. I suggest that the return of the Jews to the land of Israel, a miracle of God after 2,000 years of dispersion, is the first step in the restoration of Israel. Also, the last thing the world needs right now is another terrorist nation, which is surely what a Palestinian state would become. - Jeff Jackson, Reynoldsburg, Ohio
The letter from prominent Christians to President Bush regarding anti-Semitism is brilliant ("Letter to the President," May 11). Without sacrificing its principled essence, it adroitly utilizes several politically correct shibboleths. This bold statement may be the first ever to juxtapose thoughtful quotations by George Washington and Andrew Sullivan. - Steven Fantina, Phillipsburg, N.J.
Thanks so much for printing the letter seven Christian leaders recently sent to President Bush regarding the "ugly specter" of anti-Semitism. That well-reasoned and well-documented letter should be a wake-up call to all Christians to be more discerning and considerably more vigilant in refuting verbal and physical attacks against our Jewish brothers and sisters. - Zanese B. Duncan, Atlanta, Ga.
Hear me roar
In a world of benign religious platitudes, I delight in the concise insights, flavored with the "roaring lion" approach to Christianity, that Joel Belz delivers ("The deaf will hear," May 11). - Jim Mathwig, Weed, Calif.
Slaves to Christ
I was struck by the comment from Mr. Masih, a Christian in Pakistan whose family will likely spend their lives making bricks ("Slave wages," May 4). "I have a strong faith in Jesus Christ," he said. "We're happy in this situation also." I try to have the same attitude, to treasure my connection to Christ above worldly goods and ease, although I am sure that my small sacrifices pale in comparison to his. Thanks for the small attitude adjustment. - Bill Cook, Lexington, Ky.
Thank you for the enlightening and practical April 27 special issue on media spin, "Osama bin Ashcroft?" and the timeline, "The one immortal blemish." I am a 10th-grader just concluding a European history course, and this issue helped me to understand the many historical misinterpretations of Christianity and helped me place my Christianity in the context of the last century's physical and verbal persecution throughout the world. - Bethany Peck, Abingdon, Md.
Although I found the quotes themselves offensive, I appreciated "Western intellectual leaders discuss Christianity" (April 27). The timeline revealed a true hatred of Christianity by many prominent leaders of society. Perhaps some Christians are guilty of having painted too broadly the anti-Christian bias of the media, but who can objectively read those quotes and dismiss our objections as mere paranoia? - Clarke McIntosh, Asheville, N.C.
End of Day
I have to challenge Mr. Olasky's assessment of the recent Canadian Alliance leadership race ("Day into night," April 20). My husband and I were part of the reason Mr. Day lost, and it was not because we were afraid of religious zealots taking over Canada. Mr. Day showed a lack of strong leadership skills in moral issues (homosexuality) and political issues (health care). In the most recent race, his opponent, Stephen Harper, is conservative on economic issues but is unwilling to take a stand on moral social issues. This left us with no good choice. - Micki Ewert, Langley, British Columbia
The new tariffs that benefit the steel industry and subsidies for farmers are antipathetic to free trade ("Bad trade winds," May 11). What happened to Mr. Bush's advocacy of global trade? - Gustavo N. Espino, Bradenton, Fla.
Gene Edward Veith's "Logical inversions" (May 11) was right on target until the final paragraph. He writes that "mental clarity is generally a prerequisite for moral clarity," but I would suggest that it is the other way around. Paul writes in Ephesians that people are "darkened in their understanding" and "ignorant" due to the "hardening of their hearts." - Brian Mattson, Philadelphia, Pa.
Bravo to Gene Edward Veith. I have often been outraged at the lack of common sense and the lack of the use of logic in many areas of public policy and discourse. - Joe Gates, Mt. Prospect, Ill.
It makes me sad to see cartoons like the one in the May 11 issue depicting a "European whinery." When Europeans see such cartoons it only confirms to them that Americans are arrogant and more interested in getting their own way, by force if necessary, than in pursuing peace and in caring for others. If even our allies don't see our way of thinking, shouldn't we pause to listen rather than make light of the other viewpoint and continue to automatically support Israel? - Lewis Codington, Sheffield, England
Passion and truth
It used to be that when WORLD arrived my husband and I would each try to get to it first. Now that Andree Seu is writing regularly, we fight over who gets to read it aloud to each other first. I've gone back over all my collected issues (near the front door, ready to give out to any visitor who doesn't subscribe) and have cut out Andree's articles for a notebook on how to write with passion and truth ("School days," May 4). - Cathryn Ritchie, Ovideo, Fla.
Dutch political leaders classified as "anti-immigrant" (May 18, p. 7) tend to be specifically opposed to the immigration of staunch Muslims. Immigrants (generally black) from the Republic of Suriname, the former Dutch colony on the north coast of South America, have not become the subject of great political furor in the Netherlands. Those immigrants know or learn Dutch and assimilate; also, great soccer players like Ruud Gullit come from among them. - The Editors