Theologically Sound. Culturally Relevant.

Brent Leatherwood ERLC

Southern Baptist Convention Lobbies For Mike Johnson’s Woke Antisemitism Law

Earlier this week, House Speaker Mike Johnson led the charge in passing the Antisemitism Awareness Act which will codify a woke organization’s definition of antisemitism to be used by the Department of Education. The bill drew backlash from Freedom Caucus members for being anti-Christian and unconstitutional. But even though Mike Johnson is getting panned on the right for his woke actions, the Souther Baptist Convention has come out in support of his bill.

In a press release the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission said:

Brent Leatherwood, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, called today’s vote on the Antisemitism Awareness Act of 2023 “the right response” to the antisemitic rallies that have taken place on multiple campuses across the country. 

In an effort to crack down on increasingly violent antisemitic rhetoric occurring at protests on college campuses, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Antisemitism Awareness Act of 2023 by a vote of 320-91. This bill requires the Department of Education to consider a more stringent federal definition of antisemitism when determining whether or not antisemitism is occurring on a college campus.

Leatherwood comments on the House vote:

“The antisemitic displays we’ve seen across our nation, and especially on college campuses, are absolutely detestable and should be denounced at every turn. Approving this bill is the right response, and I would urge the Senate to move forward swiftly.

Antisemitism is a problem for every person of faith and even those of no faith. In multiple resolutions going back over a hundred years, Southern Baptists have long stood with the Jewish people and the nation of Israel. We will continue to do so and work to combat antisemitism and any form of hatred or bigotry at home and abroad.”

Brent Leatherwood has advocated for gun control in Tennesseefunding for Ukraineamnesty for illegal aliens, and opposed pro-life legislation all under the guise of representing Southern Baptists.

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6 Responses

  1. I wonder why I became a Christian Anarchist (Right wing type of Christian Anarchism).

  2. The main problem is that they basically just copied and pasted the IHRA guidelines into the bill. They may be ok as guidelines, but they’re not specific enough to be codified into law. Yet the bill defers to those guidelines as the “definition” of antisemitism.

    The guidelines preface the problematic examples with “… could, taking into account the overall context, include, but are not limited to …”

    While it respects the fact that context matters, it’s too vague and leaves too much up to the discretion of whoever is trying to enforce the law, opens the door for lawfare for activist lawyers and prosecutors.

    As I said yesterday, the context matters. The Apostles recorded the fact, as a matter of sharing the Gospel, not as a matter of trying to stir up any sort of violent conflict. In 1 Thess. 2, which Jeff over at the Dissenter posted this morning, to encourage gentile believers who endured the same suffering at the hand of their own countrymen as much as the Jewish believers did in Judea. I.e., as a matter of taking up their cross and following the Lord. In no scripture is it mentioned in a context to stir up animosity or hatred for Jews, or to call for vengeance, or anything of the sort.

    If someone were to put up a billboard on the highway, with a hamas flag and a swastika, that quoted part of a cherrypicked scripture, out of context, the historical fact that Jews did deliver Him up to be killed, then that would be antisemitic. The purpose and intent would be obvious.

    As I said yesterday, both “sides” for or against the bill, need to do a better job of explaining. And the bill should’ve been more specific, particularly in defining exactly what, when, why, and how the context should be taken into account. The IHRA guidelines acknowledge the significance of context, but leave too much up to the imagination.

    A law that is too vague is likely to cause more conflict than it would ever prevent.

    1. We’ve got opponents of the bill overreacting, flying off the handle, racing to twitter to claim the Gospel is being outlawed. And proponents of the bill, including the author, racing to twitter to call everybody who criticizes the bill a moron, and who knows what else.

      Are these 10-year-old schoolgirls or adults?

      The bill just doesn’t have enough specificity. Sit down like adults and go through it and fix it in a civil manner. Make an effort to more clearly define the context. How hard is that?

      They make themselves look like a bunch of lazy sloths who do nothing but copy and paste stuff into bills off the internet, and then race to social media to bellyache.

    2. The message of, and encouragement in, 1 Thess. 2 is not to stir up animostity or hatred of the Jews, or to start any sort of feud between Christians and Jews.

      The admonishment is to bear our cross.

      … as MEN should

    3. Another reason it is mentioned in scripture is because it was a fulfillment of prophecy. When Pilate washed his hands of the matter and left the decision up to the Jews in the crowd, prophecy was fulfilled. And the Apostles recorded it as a matter of evidence that Jesus is truly the Messiah as prophesied.

      If you ask some Jews, they believe Matthew just arbitrarily blamed the Jews in order to curse them and all future generations, and start some never-ending feud or war. No, Matthew recorded the historical fact because it was fulfillment of prophecy.

  3. I think Johnson might be compromised. He cares more about Israel than Christianity.

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