Pastor who criticized Islam, Jews to deliver prayer at US embassy opening
(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)
Former governor of Massachusetts and 2012 presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, said on Sunday that the Baptist pastor who will deliver a prayer on Monday’s opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem, shouldn’t have the honor of doing so, calling him a “religious bigot”.
Robert Jeffress, a Texan pastor, is joining the US delegation to Jerusalem led by Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan, and is set to deliver a prayer at the opening event.
“Robert Jeffress says ‘you can’t be saved by being a Jew,’ and ‘Mormonism is a heresy from the pit of hell.’ He’s said the same about Islam. Such a religious should not be giving the prayer that opens the United States Embassy in Jerusalem” Romney tweeted on Sunday, referring to a speech Jeffress gave in 2011.
Jeffress fired back at Romney, tweeting “Historic Christianity has taught for 2,000 years that salvation is through faith in Christ alone. The fact that I, along with tens of millions of evangelical Christians around the world, continue to espouse that belief, is neither bigoted nor newsworthy”
The Texan pastor is a known supporter of Trump and has praised his decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem.
“Jerusalem has been the object of the affection of both Jews and Christians down through history and the touchstone of prophecy, but most importantly, God gave Jerusalem — and the rest of the Holy Land — to the Jewish people. President Trump is a modern-day profile in courage, accomplishing what no other president has been willing to do,” Jeffress said about the embassy move.
The decision to include Jeffress as part of the US delegation is seen as an appeal to Trump’s Christian voters in the US.
The US President will not attend the opening, and will instead address invitees by video.
US Ambassador David Friedman will instead preside over the dedication ceremony.
The embassy move will take place on the 70th anniversary of Israel's founding, while the following day Palestinians will mark the Nakba, or "catastrophe," commemorating the more than 700,000 Palestinians who fled or were expelled in the 1948 war surrounding Israel's creation.
While Israelis and White House officials have exuberantly praised the move, Palestinians are expected to hold mass demonstrations along the Gaza border and in the West Bank.
There is concern that the Gaza protests could turn deadly, as the Hamas rulers of the blockaded enclave called for thousands to breach the heavily fortified border security fence.
The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said that it would almost double the number of troops deployed to the Gaza border and in the West Bank to tackle Palestinian protests against the Jerusalem embassy opening.
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It's fun to watch the abrahamics persecute each other rather than the sane and logical. The sooner they kill each other into extinction the better.
Pal are not indigenous to the land of the Jews.