Whose Land Is It?’

Dr. Reed Lessing’s “Whose Land Is It?” (November ’06) is invaluable because it answers the question at the heart of problems in the Middle East. His article is valuable both for its religious and political insights.

A recent New York Times headline read: “For evangelicals, supporting Israel is ‘God’s foreign policy.’ ” The Lutheran Witness article refutes that idea by saying the land-promises of the Old Testament have given way to the New Testament promises, which “are not directed toward any particular ethnic group.”

In this day and age, Lessing’s article, in a constructive way, is playing with dynamite. No doubt you’ll be feeling the impact from both the extreme religious right and the “Israel first” politicians.

Thank you for this important article from Dr. Lessing.
Phyllis Mackaoui
Arroyo Grande, Calif.

I read “Whose Land Is It?” with some dismay.

Because I firmly believe in premillennialism, I found the article misleading in the face of so much Scripture that prophetically speaks of end-time events.
Although the stated position of the Missouri Synod is amillennialism, the three or four primary views on end-time events (postmillennialism and preterism being the others) have been around since the A.D. 100s.

A proper discussion of this scope cannot take place in the confines of “Letters to the Editor” or even in articles within the Witness. I therefore take issue with the article and basically categorize it as a quick, cheap shot at premillennialism.
If we are to diverge on this topic, let’s at least put all the arguments on the table so people can see the differences and understand why some fellow Christians-even some fellow Lutherans-interpret end-time events along a particular line of reasoning.
This article does nothing to advance understanding of Scripture but only underscores an amillennial viewpoint, which, by the way, it never states is the theological basis for the article.
Jack Rawlins
Ponca City, Okla.

Professor Lessing’s article explaining the Scriptural teaching of the end times was excellent-except for the last sentence.

When he writes that “Jesus will lovingly gaze upon all the baptized and say, ‘You are always and forevermore mine!,'” he contradicts Scripture and the Lutheran Confessions, which teach that no matter if a person is baptized or not, “Whoever does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:16).

It is contrary to Scripture to in any way imply that Baptism automatically guarantees a person’s eternal life whether he or she remains in faith or not.
Rev. Theodore Allwardt
Monticello, N.M.

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