Isaac and Ishmael, Not Cain and Abel

Cain was angry at God. Cain was angry at God, and instead of taking his anger to God, instead of complaining in faith to God, Cain murdered his brother Abel. The first murder. The brother problem. It comes up again and again in the Bible as it comes up again and again in life.

Israelis and Palestinians are massacring each other now on a daily basis. They’re killing children and soldiers, young people and old people, innocents and angry people. It doesn’t matter. They’re killing everyone. It’s all terrorism. The people – they are people – on both sides are terrorized. There is no right side. There is NO RIGHT SIDE.

Sarah didn’t believe that she would really become pregnant, so she convinced Abraham to get her slave, Hagar, pregnant.  Hagar gave birth to Ishmael, and that was fine. Until Sarah did become pregnant. Once Sarah gave birth to Isaac, she saw Ishmael as a threat, and she convinced Abraham to throw Hagar and Ishmael out into the desert. Isaac and Ismael had no quarrel with one another. They had played with each other. It was Sarah who felt threatened.

Now the sons of Isaac and the sons of Ishmael hurl bombs at one another. They dishonor their father Abraham as they kill their own kin. And make no mistake, we are all kin. We are all the children of Abraham.

I see posts on Facebook from friends who want me to stand with Israel, or from friends who want me to unilaterally condemn Israel. I understand, but this is only part of the picture. I cannot stand with one side or another. Both sides are wrong here. Both sides must stop the bombing.

Every bomb that Israel drops on Gaza creates more members of Hamas. It’s just….stupid. Every rocket that Hamas launches into Israel entrenches the Israelis further. This policy is also stupid.

Both of these governments are blinded and useless. Benjamin Netanyahu is a proxy martyr for his brother who was the hero-martyr of Entebbe. It’s time for Idi Amin’s influence over world affairs to end.

One side or the other needs to stop the bombing even if the other side won’t. There will be nothing left to bomb or claim.

When Abraham died, Isaac and Ishmael got together and honored their father and buried him properly. It’s time for Isaac and Ishmael to remember who they are. It’s time for Isaac and Ishmael instead of Cain and Abel.

That’s all I’ve got. That’s my mite.


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