Onward Christian Zionists

Ed Lasky
Jennifer Rubin has written a superb, brief article on the phenomena of Christian Zionism whose adherents are the fastest growing, and least understood, Israel support group in the nation. An excerpt regarding the founder of Christians United for Israel (CUFI), Pastor John Hagee:


Hagee is a charismatic preacher with a sonorous baritone voice. At the banquet, he held the crowd spellbound, explaining Israel's plight and the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran. He reminded the crowd that John F. Kennedy went to Berlin at the height of the Cold War, "an outpost of democracy in a sea of tyranny." He quoted Kennedy: "Two thousand years ago the proudest boast was ‘civis Romanus sum.' Today, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is ‘Ich bin ein Berliner.' " Hagee then pivoted:

I stand here at a time when Israel is a tiny outpost of freedom and democracy in a sea of tyranny. . . .  Permit me to say something to you straight from the heart. Please know that what I say to you now is a sentiment shared by millions of Christians across America and around the world. Today, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is "Ani Yisraeli-I am an Israeli." 

As he recited the litany of threats and insults to the Jewish state, he repeated the mantra again and again until 4,000 Christians stood shouting, "I am an Israeli."

Former deputy national security adviser Elliott Abrams, who oversaw  Israel policy in the Bush administration, appreciates that support. "American Jews ought to notice that there are actually more evangelicals in this country than Jews by about 20 or 30 to 1," he says. "With the Jewish population shrinking as a percentage of the American people, Christians are an increasingly critical base of support for Israel-and groups like CUFI are begging us to accept their help. We should accept it with gratitude and enthusiasm."

To which I say -- with the highest degree of respect and regard : Hallelujah and Amen.

I am deeply involved in a charity that for over 25 years has been devoted to bringing Christians and Jews together: The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, founded and run by Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein (recently declared by Newsweek as among our nation's most influential rabbis) -- where I am honored to be on its board of directors and serve as its Treasurer.

We raise tens of millions of dollars a year to help support the Jewish people around the world (whether they are Holocaust survivors in Siberia or Iranian Jews seeking to be smuggled across the border to freedom in Israel; we support Ethiopian Jews hoping to make aliyah -return to Israel; we build bomb shelters in the Galilee and reinforced bus shelters in Sderot-just outside Gaza and within range of Hamas missiles).

By far, the majority of this funding comes from Christians -- whose sacrificial giving and testimonials about why they give are heartwarming. It is a noble cause of bringing Christians and Jews together to help those in need and to repair the damages and pain that have occurred for far too long. There is a lot of misinformation about why Christians support Jews. I tried to clear that up in an interview that I had a few years ago with David Brog, the executive director of CUFI.

There are attempts to split Christians from supporting Israel, led by Jimmy Carter. I also have written about the worldwide surge in evangelicals and its possible geopolitical ramifications (the Islamist bombing in Uganda may have been directed at Uganda because that is a center of the African surge in evangelicals -- six missionaries were killed, a fact slighted in media accounts, naturally)
Jennifer Rubin has written a superb, brief article on the phenomena of Christian Zionism whose adherents are the fastest growing, and least understood, Israel support group in the nation. An excerpt regarding the founder of Christians United for Israel (CUFI), Pastor John Hagee:


Hagee is a charismatic preacher with a sonorous baritone voice. At the banquet, he held the crowd spellbound, explaining Israel's plight and the threat of a nuclear-armed Iran. He reminded the crowd that John F. Kennedy went to Berlin at the height of the Cold War, "an outpost of democracy in a sea of tyranny." He quoted Kennedy: "Two thousand years ago the proudest boast was ‘civis Romanus sum.' Today, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is ‘Ich bin ein Berliner.' " Hagee then pivoted:

I stand here at a time when Israel is a tiny outpost of freedom and democracy in a sea of tyranny. . . .  Permit me to say something to you straight from the heart. Please know that what I say to you now is a sentiment shared by millions of Christians across America and around the world. Today, in the world of freedom, the proudest boast is "Ani Yisraeli-I am an Israeli." 

As he recited the litany of threats and insults to the Jewish state, he repeated the mantra again and again until 4,000 Christians stood shouting, "I am an Israeli."

Former deputy national security adviser Elliott Abrams, who oversaw  Israel policy in the Bush administration, appreciates that support. "American Jews ought to notice that there are actually more evangelicals in this country than Jews by about 20 or 30 to 1," he says. "With the Jewish population shrinking as a percentage of the American people, Christians are an increasingly critical base of support for Israel-and groups like CUFI are begging us to accept their help. We should accept it with gratitude and enthusiasm."

To which I say -- with the highest degree of respect and regard : Hallelujah and Amen.

I am deeply involved in a charity that for over 25 years has been devoted to bringing Christians and Jews together: The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, founded and run by Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein (recently declared by Newsweek as among our nation's most influential rabbis) -- where I am honored to be on its board of directors and serve as its Treasurer.

We raise tens of millions of dollars a year to help support the Jewish people around the world (whether they are Holocaust survivors in Siberia or Iranian Jews seeking to be smuggled across the border to freedom in Israel; we support Ethiopian Jews hoping to make aliyah -return to Israel; we build bomb shelters in the Galilee and reinforced bus shelters in Sderot-just outside Gaza and within range of Hamas missiles).

By far, the majority of this funding comes from Christians -- whose sacrificial giving and testimonials about why they give are heartwarming. It is a noble cause of bringing Christians and Jews together to help those in need and to repair the damages and pain that have occurred for far too long. There is a lot of misinformation about why Christians support Jews. I tried to clear that up in an interview that I had a few years ago with David Brog, the executive director of CUFI.

There are attempts to split Christians from supporting Israel, led by Jimmy Carter. I also have written about the worldwide surge in evangelicals and its possible geopolitical ramifications (the Islamist bombing in Uganda may have been directed at Uganda because that is a center of the African surge in evangelicals -- six missionaries were killed, a fact slighted in media accounts, naturally)