Christ is born in Gaza

Dec 24, 2023
Christmas nativity scene

Why was Christ born in a stable? Because the Israelis bombed all the houses. Truly. Every year Jesus is born, dies and is reborn. He is reborn into our world – that is part of what makes Christian symbology meaningful. This year Christ is a brown skinned Middle Eastern man about to be born in Gaza.

First time around, Christ was born in a stable. The ruling regime at the time – Herod’s – just like the current one in Israel, was mercilessly killing babies to maintain the constitutional order. Today I see a heavily pregnant Mary, aided by Joseph, rushing through the rubbled streets of Gaza desperately escaping the bombs and the merchants of death. The Israelis and the Americans have turned Gaza into a graveyard for thousands of women and children. Nobody “forced” them to do this. It is a policy of extermination.

In the modern world Christianity is largely an emptied-out doctrine, a Sunday pastime for the dazed and confused. It doesn’t have to be. But you have to listen to Christ, not the BBC or CNN. Christ urges us to stand in solidarity with the victims of the powerful.

“For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat. I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink” .

Israel has cut off access to food and water for the people of Gaza: a war crime of the highest order and a cardinal sin. According to the UN, over 50% of Gazans are now starving, 90% don’t eat food every day. Imagine the misery of being hungry and thirsty day after day and what that does to your body. Please think of these people as you sit down to Christ-mas dinner.

“For I was a stranger and you took no mercy on me.” 

America has supplied 2000 lb bombs, countless tank shells and even phosphorus munitions that the Israelis have rained down on civilians in their daily slaughter while our leaders look blankly on mouthing platitudes. Nearly 70% of the victims are women and children. These are war crimes that, according to the bible, will send the perpetrators and all those who are guilty of inaction – such as the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court of Justice – into the roaring fires of Hell.

“I was sick and you did not comfort me”. 

Israel is conducting Health Warfare, systematically dismantling Gaza’s health infrastructure, bombing hospitals, killing medics. Disease is now being used by the Israelis and Americans as a weapon of war against the besieged people of Gaza. Some Israelis have openly touted disease as a fast-track to victory. Only someone completely mad or sociopathic would think Christ would not express righteous rage at this behaviour. He stands with the oppressed, not the oppressors.

“I was in prison and you did not visit me”

Israel with US muscle has for many years run Gaza as an open-air concentration camp. Offshore, a US battle group stands ready to obliterate anyone who dares try to intervene. The IDF periodically “mows the lawn” – killing countless civilians to assert total dominance over this captive population. Under Christ’s rules of engagement, the US and Israeli armies and their governments will be sent to eternal damnation. These are His rules, not mine.

“Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.”

I don’t believe Americans like Joe Biden or many of our own politicians are in any meaningful way Christian – certainly not the kind of Christian I was given as exemplars when I grew up in the Catholic faith. I think it is impossible – rationally, spiritually and morally incoherent – to be both a Christian and to in any way sanction what is being inflicted on our brothers and sisters in Palestine.

If you harbour any belief in the teachings of Christ, or any belief in hell, it may be worth raising your voice, however small it may be, to show solidarity with those who need it most. Write to your MP, attend rallies, call for a permanent ceasefire and the immediate recognition of a free and independent Palestine.

“This is my commandment: that you love one another as I have loved you. By this all people will know you are my disciples.”

Merry Christmas. Peace on Earth.

 

Eugene Doyle is a Wellington-based community organiser. He grew up in a devout Christian household. Today he does not subscribe to any religion.

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