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June 13, 2011

Want to Fire Up Conservatives? Cheer On Israel

It is no secret that some of the strongest backers of Israel are Christian conservatives in America, a trend on full display last week at the Faith and Freedom Conference. Among all the issues mentioned by speakers, few, if any, received the amount of enthusiastic support as calls to strengthen American support for Israel.

President Obama said last month that negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians should begin along the 1967 borders. Presidential candidate Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) called this “a shocking display of betrayal of our greatest and friend and ally Israel.”

“America must do what all previous presidents have done since Harry Truman and stand with Israel. I stand with Israel. … [W]e are sending a message to the world that President Obama speaks for a very tiny minority. He may the president of the United States, but he does not speak for us on the issue of Israel,” Bachmann said.

It was the only statement by the Tea Party leader that moved the conference attendees to their feet in applause.

The reception of the audience was similar for other speakers. Calls to repeal “Obamacare,” lower taxes, restrict abortion, and enshrine traditional marriage were well-received. But Israel—that was an issue that consistently received standing ovations.

GOP candidate Tim Pawlenty spoke for nearly 15 minutes on topics ranging from taxes to terrorism, but the crowd did not appear excited until he expressed his support for Israel.

"We need a President of the United States who stands shoulder to shoulder with our great friend Israel and make sure there is no daylight between the United States and Israel,” Pawlenty said, bringing people to their feet.

The support for Israel hinted at Christian Zionism, with speakers saying that Israel was granted their land by God and should exist as a Jewish state.

American Center for Law and Justice chief counsel Jay Sekulow said that it was not enough that the Palestinian Authority recognize Israel. The Palestinian Authority needed to recognize “the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state.”

 “I'm also telling you that I expect a rebuke aimed at the president of the United states coming out the United States Senate, with bipartisan support, saying no return to the '67 borders, no negotiations with Hamas, and no divided Jerusalem," Sekulow said, a rebuke the audience enthusiastically endorsed.

Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, gave his entire speech on Israel, reading from Genesis where God promised to bless those that bless Israel. Land seemed to imply that Obama's recent statements put America at risk of not being blessed by God, possibly even cursed.

“If we want God to bless America, then we have to bless the Jews,” Land said. “God gave that land to his chosen people forever. That issue is settled by God almighty.”

Land took aim at President Obama, calling him “foolish” and “the worst president of the United States that Israel has ever had.”

Land said he had a message of encouragement to Israel: "Help is on the way,” Land said. "Israel yesterday. Israel today. Israel tomorrow. You are not alone.”

It was a message that may not become the top issue in next year's presidential race, but it is clearly one that is lighting a fire under many in the Christian conservative movement.

Comments

I was shocked by how brazenly some of these politicians invoked Biblical allusions, as if we were a theocracy. I am a proud Christian and try my best to bless the Jews, but I am also proud tp live in a country that protects all citizens' religious freedoms and does not impose the theology of one group upon the whole.

I wonder, too, how much love we truly show Israel if we turn a blind eye to her faults? She will never know peace or begin to heal from the wounds of the past unless she stops thinking and acting like a victim. (It is for example Israel and not Palestine that is a nuclear power.) The Christian model commands us to call our friends to repentance and growth- lovingly, yes, but it needs to be done nonetheless.

With respect Daniel Pipes is hardly an objective source on Christian Zionism, nor is he familiar with the origins or present influence both in the UK and rest of the world. I suggest a better link would be http://www.christianzionism.org/ or my own www.stephensizer.com

Besides spreading the importance of Standing up for Israel, we (active conservatives) have just started the "America Stands with Israel" Movement.

It's easy, should be fun and a very effective way to send a powerful message to Radical Muslim; Hamas; Palistian Resistance Groups; the White House and all global nations.

Join up with us to help swing Global Political sympathy to Israel, where it belongs.

Is it possible that the support for Israel by the Religious Right is really about stirring up financial support from what they perceive to be 'wealthy Jewish voters'?

Basil, it's ludicrus to think that the "religious right" supports Israel for the reason you gave. I'd guess that most of us on the "religious right" support Israel because God tells us to in the Bible, and it's the morally right thing to do. And the reason it's ludicrus is because most Jews vote for the liberals, so nobody is counting on their vote but the democrats. Of course I may wish that they would vote for a candidate that doesn't show as much disdane as BHO does towards Israel, but it has nothing to do with any money coming from them. It's a morality "thing", just like not spending federal money for abortions is a morality "thing". Don't worry, I'm sure you won't lose out on the money from the liberal Jews. I guess that's what you're worried about losing out on. Money over morality, it's very sad, but all of this is prophecied in the Bible.

I still believe it is very possible. The movement needs $$. For example in 1995 Liberty University accepted $3.5 million dollars from the Rev Moon.

My prior post is not a slur against the Jewish people but it goes to show that the religious right will take donation large or small from those outside their ideological scope.

I endorse support for Israel and for the Jews but not at the expense of ousting or even killing thousands of Palestinians in the process. Sadly misinterpretations of biblical prophecy may lead to this. Bad hermeneutics kills.

When will fellow Christians realize that the promise to "Abraham's seed" culminates in Yeshuah, the "seed" of Abraham?? The Bible NEVER promises land to secular ethnic Jews. It promises it to COVENANT Israel...and that promise was VERY conditional.

CT, PLEASE do an article on the baseless claims of folk-theology known as Christian Zionism!!

hating on Palestinians and cheering on Israel's Human Rights abuses against both Christians and Muslim Palestinians as well as Israel's refusal to abide by International Laws has been co-opted by Christian conservatives in the USA as a brand that sadly sells.


JM, you may be very convinced that you're right, but you need to realize that there are scholars on both sides of the aisle, and an article by CT is not going to settle the question. And yes, it does go back very far in time, not just to Darby, I've researched early church fathers, and they were divided as well.

Christian support for Israel is gross. How can a religion of "peace" support such a repressive and violent regime? Christianity is way too militaristic to be associated with Jesus. kn

If we are going to insist that the promise to Abraham and his descendents be honored we need to recognize that all children of Shem (Shemites/Semites) have a right to the land promised to Abraham. The children of Isaac were the Sons of Promise and that promise found fulfilment in Jesus, God's Messiah.

Conservative Christians has so mixed their religion with their politics that they can't even read their Bibles honestly anymore. I wonder sometimes where to look for the Church. Certainly not in fundamentalist churches and not even in a large percentage of evangelical ones. More and more the church is located in small groups of believers whose purpose is to honor God, love all men, and live justly.

Let's keep our conservative theological position which I endorse separate from the support of Israel which we might or might not endorse. God is not interested in territorial conquest (1948), but interested in souls after Israel brought the gospel message to the cross. God bless the Palestinians and their righteous cause!

God is not interested in territorial conquest, but soul. God bless the Palestinians,

Without a doubt Jews and Israel are by far, smarter than american conservatives "christians".

So Yes support by all means anyone who is smarter than thou.

Is that what God told them in the Bible?

Because really I have try to find in the Bible anything that says to "christians": "Support Israel" and I can't find it. Especially when this Israel that we see in the news everyday is an Antichrist Israel. But of course the Bible has over 31,000 verses, so I'm still looking.

It seems that the words "antichrist" and "heretic" are thrown around a bit too loosely these days. And yes, I know there will be many antichrists in the end times. However, you may need to do more than a simple word search than on the words "support Israel". You may actually even have to do a study. You won't find the word "incarnate" either, yet Jesus was God incarnate. Even RC Sproul, who probably believes as many as you do, has stated that he does not believe that God is done with Israel yet. You may have to look up other words like "everlasting" and "covenant". Israel is mentioned in Revelation, or has that been tossed out by many? You might want to check out Daniel's 70 weeks, and check out Ezekial, and Revelation. I certainly don't have all the answers, but you certainly do not either.

BTW, people should try and find pictures of little 2,3, and 4 year old Israeli's in army uniforms with pretend blood on their faces and hands, and pretend bombs strapped to themselves. You won't find it. But you will find little Palestinians dressed that way, and who are taught to hate the Jews and Christians as soon as they are able to talk. The one thing common to the moslim people is that they don't want Israel to exist. Period. It's not the Israeli's who are continually lobbing rocks and bombs over borders. You might want to actually research the history of the land before coming to your false conclusions. Most of the countries were divided up after WW2, and that has certainly not been a long term dwelling place of the "Palestinians". It wasn't even called Palestine all of the time, and many times, before Israel, the Palestinians were living in Syria, among other places. If you look up on a non-muslim site, like any encyclopedia site for instance, you'll see that the boundaries and names have changed throughout history.

If there was ever any doubt about it. It's now all been dissipated!!

God's promise to return the Jewish people back to Israel and give them the promised land is based on His desire to honor His name (Ezekiel 37:23-24). He says, "It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am about to act. but the the sake of my holy name . . . " Supporting Israel is supporting God's promise repeated over and over in the Jewish Scriptures to give the Jewish people the land He promised to Abraham. Jesus is a spiritual fulfillment of God's promise to bless Israel spiritually (Galatians 3:16). In Romans 9:4 Paul makes it clear that God's promises and covenants still apply to Israel even after the Messiah Jesus appeared. Thus, Jesus nor the church has fulfilled God's promises to Israel as replacement theologians falsely teach.
Sizer and the rest of the replacement theologians are deficient in their grasp of the Jewish Scriptures and can only deny God's promises to Israel by ignoring the majority of the Tenach to prove their point. I applaud these conservative politicians for their stance of supporting Israel during a time when Palestinians are consistently painted as the underdog. And everybody knows how the Christian "must support the underdog," even when the underdog has initiated attacks upon Israel from 1948 to the present. Read the history of the War of Independence, the Suez Canal crisis, the Six Day War, the War of Attrition, The Yom Kippur War and the various Intifadas. They were all started by Arab nations or Palestinian terrorists, and now they are trying to convince American evangelical Christians, that they are the underdogs. Evangelicals have to ask themselves why "peace-loving Palestinians" voted in a self-proclaimed terrorist organization to rule over them- Hamas - thus making it nearly impossible to reach a peace accord with Israel. Netanyahu already extended the olive branch a few weeks ago before Congress like so many of his predecessors by recognizing Palestine as a state. Where was the reciprocal recognition of Israel as a state by the Palestinian Authority? Hamas is devoted to never recognize Israel as a state and like all Arab nations, is committed to the destruction of Israel. If you don't believe the Bible, try reading modern history of the Middle East conflict.

Some Christian supporters of Israel never stop to consider that there are multitudes of seriously committed Palestinian Christians who also have a right to live freely, securely and independently in their own land as do the Israelis. I do not believe that the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and yes, the God also of Ishmael (Biblical ancestor of the Arabs), approves of a totally blind support for Israel no matter what Israel does right or wrong.

So, I'm still looking in what by my count are, 31,195 verses of our Bibles and in 2 languages. But can't find anything yet that commands "christians" to support an unbelieving, unrepentant, worldly Israel no matter what. Of course "Support" translates as US$$ Values.

So sorry friends, try something else! Because this argument is completely worn out!

Regarding previous posts that says that "they" can't find a Biblical Scripture that tells, essentially, Christians to support Irael; there are Scriptures that tell us what the demise of those nations/people that oppose/fight against Isreal. E.g. Zechariah 14:12. When one considers the countless times God has intervened in favor of the Israelites, it's extreme hubris to think that we are essential to Isreal's survival; fact is they don't need any earthly power to defend them.

It is really sad how the evangelicals have turned their back on Palestinian and middle east Christians. Israel has a government policy of persecution of Jews who become Christian and other Christians. Zionism is racism. Read the Apostle Paul's writings on this issue. Unfortunately, American taxpayer dollars go to this openly racist state. Israeli values are just too extreme for America. Israel is a Christ and Christian hating state. We need to pray for their conversion.

What is more tragic is the killing of Christians Sunday after Sunday as they go to church in Egypt, now that the Muslim Brotherhood is in charge. Where is your pity for them? I don't hear weekly or monthly reports of the killing by Israeli's. They have a right to defend themselves when the Palestinians are continuing to lob bombs at them. Where is your pity for the Christians in the new country of South Sudan by the Muslims in northern Sudan? There is great genocide going on right now, and nothing the Israeli's do can in any way compare to what is happening to the Christians throughout the world by the Muslims. Somehow I think your pity for the Christians in Palestine by the Israeli's is greatly overshadowed by what is happening every day to other Christians by the Muslims.

What is far sadder is the hatred that is ingrained into the Muslim Palestinians, who are by far the majority of Palestinians, from the moment they can talk. Are you blind to the news reports and videos of 2 and 3 year old Palestinians (and other Muslims) who are painted with red paint to look like blood on them, taught hatred of Jews and Christians, taught to shoot rifles at the ages of 5 and 6, and have replica bombs put on the little children so they can be taught to be "good little suicide bombers"? What is also sad is that the Israeli's are asked to give up more and more of their land, which is a very small amount of land to begin with, before even coming to the bargaining table. The Palestinians however, refuse to give up anything, and they insist on the complete annihilation of all Jews and they will never concede to the right of Israel to even exist! They continued to bomb innocent civilians even while "peace talks" in the past were occurring. Maybe when the Palestinians at least acknowledge the right of Israel to exist, I can feel a little more sympathy. Sorry, but the mistreatment by the Israeli's is miniscule compared to what the Muslims are doing, and they have shown far more patience considering what is becoming the entire world's hatred for the Jews, which as you know, is prophesied in the Bible. Let me see, where would I feel safer traveling to as a Christian, Israel or Saudi Arabia? People travel all the time to Israel and come back having had wonderful experiences, and they don't have to hide their faith. Yes, keep praying for persecuted Christians AND Jews throughout the world. But we all know, if we read the news at all, who is doing the persecuting. Why aren't you crying out for the Christians by the Egyptian's every week now that the Muslim Brotherhood is in charge?

No;

You will not find a verse in the Bible that commands Christians to support Israel. But, if you understand that the Book of Daniel refers to the end times of the gentiles and the Book of the Revelation of Jesus Christ (not John) refers to modern day Israel, then, it seems as if some common sense would prevail?

Perhaps it may escape notice that despite the news about Israel, Palestinians and the U.N., Israel is prospering, and not only a little. They are potentially huge. Chance? It would not appear to be the case.

I'm sorry to soap-box, but please give this some thought: The Israelites are God's chosen people, Christians are God's redeemed people. Christianity's destiny is not the same as the Israelites. We will not be present at Armageddon. They will. Yes, modern day Israel is a secular nation, but to the blogger Velma who questions $$$ in aid to Israel:

We send $$$ in the billions to many other nations who are not our friends, who do not support us, etc. Israel bends over backwards for us and are the single sole resource we have in the Middle East for support, especially human intelligence. Perhaps you favor the 2 billion we send the Palestinians - and for what?

If you want to oppose support for Israel, feel free, but please do not be offended if you don't find me within your ranks. These people have a ways to travel and a destiny according to the Book. I, for one, do not care to get in the way.

Good evening.