At the annual Herzliya Policy Conference, NRB President & CEO Dr. Jerry A. Johnson participated in a panel discussion on June 21 highlighting Christian support as a growing strategic asset for Israel.
In delivering the opening address for the panel, Johnson read the resolution unanimously passed earlier this year by NRB’s Board of Directors that expressed support for Israel and urged Christians to “reject and guard against the dangerous Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) Movement.” The resolution was received with applause by those in attendance.
He then went on to give a spirited and scholarly defense of why he supports Israel as a Christian and as an American.
“Christianity and Christ came from Judaism,” Johnson said before sharing his belief in Jesus as the Messiah.
“It is my happy duty to invite everyone, Jew and Gentile, to believe as well, and to consider Jesus,” he said.
Johnson went on to note that freedom, the rule of law, and private property are shared values between the United States and Israel.
“As a Christian, there are many reasons I am pro-Israel. But as an American, one of the many reasons that I am pro-Israel is that they stand alone in this region for freedom, property rights, and the rule of law. Simply put, we are allies, in defense of freedom with order,” he said after noting the stark contrast between Israel and its regional adversaries.
“May the Lord help us, and the people of Israel, to do it together more faithfully,” he concluded. “Amen.”
The panel, organized in cooperation with the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ), featured Johnson along with David Parsons, Vice President & Senior Spokesman for ICEJ; Dr. Luis Fernandez Solares, Founder of Canal 27 Christian Television; Gottfried Buehler, Germany National Director for ICEJ; Dr. Rev. Abdou Maiga, ICEJ’s Senegal National Director & Special Coordinator for West Africa; Joseph Chou, former senior representative with Siemens in China; and Akiva Tor, head of the Bureau for World Jewish Affairs and World Religions at the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Several officials from the Israel Foreign Ministry were in attendance, as well as senior figures from leading Jewish and Christian organizations, such as the Simon Wiesenthal Center, CAMERA, and Bridges for Peace.
At the broader three-day conference, organized by the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliya, speakers included Tony Blair, former Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; Brett McGurk, Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIS, U.S. Department of State; Maj. Gen. Amir Eshel, Commander in Chief of the Israeli Air Force; and Jacob A. Frenkel, Chairman, JPMorgan Chase International.
The Herzliya Conference is Israel’s foremost global policy annual gathering, drawing together the most senior Israeli and international participants from government, business, and academia to address pressing national, regional, and global issues.
The center stage for Middle East risk assessment and policy analysis, the conference agenda covers a broad span of issues, ranging from nuclear proliferation and the Middle East peace process to world finance and energy security.
The conference is held under academic auspices in a nonpartisan, informal atmosphere, which facilitates and encourages an informed debate on emerging challenges and policy responses.
By NRB Staff
Published: June 22, 2017