The Source of America’s Love for Israel

Geneva Bible (Wikimedia)

In a previous blog post, I surveyed the highlights of statements made by presidents of the United States regarding America’s efforts to be a blessing to the Jewish people and the nation of Israel.

Our nation has a rich legacy of support for Israel, for which we should be very thankful. Many have conjectured that this may ultimately be the reason that God has blessed the United States so abundantly over the course of so many years.

This begs the question: What is the source of this centuries-long focus on Israel? What was the foundation that gave rise to this concept of support for Israel, which—despite the winds of political change—has endured consistently throughout our history?

Our historical search for the answer to that question must take us back to the 16th century and the city of Geneva, Switzerland, where English Reformers gathered after fleeing the persecution advanced by Bloody Mary Tudor, who ruled in England from 1553 to 1558. A number of these men (including Miles Coverdale and John Foxe) congregated in the city where John Calvin preached and there—for the first time in history—translated the Bible completely from the original languages into English. The work they produced is called the Geneva Bible.1

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The Reformed Tradition on Israel Is Diverse

J. I. Packer’s Rare Puritan Library Now Digitized To Be Read Online For Free

"The John Richard Allison Library in Vancouver . . . has now made available their entire rare Puritan collection to be read online for free. What a gift of modern technology to help us recover these gifts from the church of the past. There are currently 80 Puritan authors in their collection, many of whose works were digitized from J. I. Packer’s private library."

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Book Review - A Puritan Theology

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One of the most voluminous and rich periods of Christian tradition and writing is that of the sixteenth and seventeenth century Puritans. The number of works and pages they produced is staggering and is only outdone by their passion for Christ and their commitment to the Scripture about which they wrote. They produced many classics that Christians have read for centuries since. The Puritans have been the victim of misunderstanding by many, but those who have taken the time to read them, have been changed forever.

In line with a long string of contemporary reprints and books on the Puritans comes a staggering volume which sets a new standard for Puritan studies. Coauthors Joel Beeke and Mark Jones have written A Puritan Theology: Doctrine for Life which sets out to provide a systematic theology from the perspective of the continental Reformed theologians of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Weighing nearly 5 pounds and measuring 2” x 7.5” x 10.2”, this book moves beyond an introduction to the field of Puritan theology and provides a rich and vast well to draw from in the quest of gaining a better grasp of the Puritans. The “Works Referenced” section is 45 pages long and includes both the primary and secondary sources cited throughout.

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