An Open Letter to Cal Thomas

© 2001 Jordan White




            Your article in the Jewish World Review of March 3, 2001, “A Coalition of Terror”, (and which subsequently appeared in the “Washington Post”)  elicits one and only one response from me:


            NOT IN MY NAME!


            In this infamous article, you take the stance that it would be in Israel’s best interests to remove the Palestinian people, ethnically cleanse them, if you will, because it’s “difficult to tell who’s a terrorist and who is not.”  You infer that you’d like to see them go and live in other parts of the Arab world where they’re more or less wanted (even though, of course, no one really likes them), and, hey, our buddy Israel would be so much better off without these trouble-makers.


            You claim to be speaking as a Christian.


            Mr. Thomas, I’m a Christian, also, and I deeply, deeply resent that fact that you are giving the Jewish readers of this publication, and readers of any faith, the impression that your stance is one that Christians, in the main, find acceptable.  I deeply resent that you have dragged me, as a fellow Christian, into your rhetoric of hatred and racism.


            Where in the teachings of Christ did you learn such abominable attitudes? 


            Surely not in the “Sermon on the Mount” where Christ preached humility, meekness, peace-making, LOVE.


            Where in Christ’s loving, patient treatment of  the woman at the well, offering this sinful woman the “Living Water” did you learn your lessons of intolerance and arrogance?


            Where in His gracious, merciful extention of Himself, of His healing, His beneficence toward the Syro-Phoenician (modern-day Lebanese) woman, who teasingly asked Him for the “crumbs” that fall from the table of His feasting “children”, do you learn such racism, such insulting degradation of an entire nation of people?


            Please, Mr. Thomas.  In future refrain from describing yourself as a “Christian” commentator, journalist, whatever.


            You do not represent those of us who truly desire to follow the Prince of Peace.


            Read the following words from the Book of James, authored, through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, by our Lord’s earthly brother:


            Who among you is wise and understanding?  Let him show by his good behavior his deeds in the gentleness of wisdom.

            But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your heart, do not be arrogant and so lie against the truth.

            This wisdom is not that which comes down from above, but is earthly, natural, demonic.

            For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every evil thing.

            But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering, without hypocrisy.

            And the seed whose fruit is righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.


                                                                                                                        James 3: 13-18





            Christ’s Sermon on the Mount is found in the Gospel According to Matthew, Chapters 5, 6, and 7.  The first part, called the “Beatitudes”, i.e., “Declarations of Blessings”, contains Jesus’ teachings which emphasize a humble, pure and merciful spirit among his followers.  As difficult as these teachings are to follow, and have been throughout history, we have His example during His time on earth to prove that it is these attitudes that will truly bring about the Kingdom of Heaven.


            The story of the woman at the well comes from the Gospel of John, Chapter 4, vss. 7-29.  In this passage of Scripture, the sinful woman describes to Christ her lonely, unhappy scenario wherein  even her husband is not “her own” (John  4:17).  Christ shows her that her dependence upon mere human beings for her sustenance and peace are not well-founded.  He then offers her the opportunity to accept God for who He says He is.  And she is thrilled to accept it:  “The man told me everything I’d done!”,  she cries.  Jesus, the Messiah of her heart, has shown her the way of redemption.


            The story of Jesus’ blessings on the Syro-Phoenician woman is found in the Gospel According to Matthew, Chapter 15,  vs. 21- 28.  She asked Jesus to cure her demon-possessed daughter.  He initially refused, saying that He was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.  When she kept begging, He told her He could not toss the children’s bread to the dogs.  Showing remarkable faith, the woman agreed, saying that at least the dogs get the crumbs that fall from the table.  She understood that the “crumbs” of  God’s grace are sufficient, and, indeed, Matthew tells us that the woman’s daughter was healed “at once”.


June 9, 2001