Thursday, February 01, 2024

Gaza Massacre (6) Bullying Servant

Being bullied and persecuted does not give a nation an absolute defence against accusations of bullying. Jesus parable of the unmerciful servant explains this.

Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand talents was brought to him. Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt. The servant fell on his knees before him. 'Be patient with me,' he begged, 'and I will pay back everything.' The servant's master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.

But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii. He grabbed him and began to choke him. 'Pay back what you owe me!' he demanded. His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, 'Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.' But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. When the other servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed and went and told their master everything that had happened.

Then the master called the servant in. 'You wicked servant,' he said, 'I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn't you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?' In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed (Matt 18:23-34).

The parable shows that people do not always learn from their own experience in their treatment of others. Those who are bullied often go on to bully others.

The Jewish people received terrible treatment under the Nazi regime in Germany. They were imprisoned and powerless in lands where they were unwanted, but now the boot is on the other foot and Israel is the strongest military power in their part of the Middle East.

The Jews have been aliens in the world for many centuries. Their treatment in many parts of the world was absolutely terrible. They should understand better than anyone what it is like to be a refugee. Given this experience, they could be expected to have empathy for the Palestinian people. Instead, they have done everything possible to make life difficult for them.

When the Jewish people escaped from Europe, they resolved never to again be in a situation where they could be bullied. However, to get that place they have had to become bullies. They have escaped from tyranny, but they are now behaving like tyrants. They have transformed from victim to bully in two generations.

This full series of articles can be read on Substack at Israel and Gaza 2024.

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