Atheists for God
Today, on my way in to the Washington Nationals baseball game, I had the opportunity to do something I've wanted to do for a long time.
Over the last few years, Jews for Jesus have hung out from time to time around Metro stops in the DC area, handing out their literature. Today, I came out of the Metro at the baseball game, one of these guys handed me a pamphlet, and as I walked by, I said "Actually, I'm an Atheist for God."
That's it. I just always wanted to make that joke to a Jew for Jesus.
Look, I understand if some Christian denominations want to stay closer to Jewish traditions. For instance, Seventh Day Adventists, who celebrate the Sabbath on Saturday, same as the Jews. But Jews for Jesus is different. They are mostly evangelical Christians trying to convert Jews.
As much as I dislike the tactics of Jews for Jesus, I am really annoyed by some Jewish groups who have organized campiagns to discredit them. For instance, a couple years ago, the rabbi at a high holiday service I went to wasted time in his sermon to talk about a campaign in the DC area to make sure people in DC know what true Jews believe, and groups like this talk of a "counter missionary movement" and say "the church's effort to evangelize the Jewish people has escalated to a feverish pitch."
Look. I could care less if a Jew wants to claim to accept Jesus Christ as his or her personal savior and still call himself or herself a Jew. No skin off my back. It's all semantics anyway, and as long as people respect my right to believe what I do, I could care less what they believe. I have a problem with Jews for Jesus only in the same sense that I have a problem with all evangelical religions, that they want ME to change what I beleive.
I think the Jewish groups who organize information campaigns to say Jews can't believe in Jesus are doing the same thing. They are trying to force their own uniform belief on a group of people. And as silly as I think being a Jew and saying you believe Jesus was the messiah is, I believe in freedom of religion.
And besides, I've known tons of Jews in my life, and I've never known one who became a Jew for Jesus. Do people really think these people are a threat? That the Jewish religion is going to somehow be lessened by Jews for Jesus?
Most people, like me, just laugh at the term Jews for Jesus. And the smart ones, like me, make Atheists for God jokes.