About Christian Zionism
There are many reasons that Christians today have a natural affinity with the Jewish people and great admiration for the State of Israel. Christians support Israel because of their personal experiences, political convictions, and study of history. For many, support for Israel has a scriptural basis, rooted in the Bible.
Christian Zionism or Biblical Zionism is a set of teachings that are based in God's promises to Abraham and confirmed by the New Testament writers. More specifically, it is the belief that Canaan, the land promised to the Jewish people, is their everlasting possession and was given for the purposes of world redemption. Israel's ownership of the land is eternal, however, her right of domicile, or privilege of living upon it, is conditional upon her reconciled relationship with the God of the Bible. As a result, the Jewish people have twice been exiled from the land and have twice returned to it. With the founding of the State of Israel in 1948, the Jewish people returned to their land a second time and most probably the last time, as promised in Isaiah 11:11.
Throughout history, some of the greatest church leaders held a theological position that is known today as Christian Zionism. A good case can be made that the original Apostles were Christian Zionists who believed that God would restore national sovereignty to Israel (Acts 1:6). Over the centuries, however, the mostly gentile Church moved away from that position. The translation of the Bible into vernacular languages in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries renewed Christian appreciation for the Jewish roots of Christianity and the biblical promises to the Jewish people. Today, strong support for Israel among hundreds of millions of Bible-based—or Evangelical—Christians extends to all corners of the globe. As the fastest-growing segment of Christianity globally, this mighty movement will continue to offer strong support for Israel in the years to come.
Many Christians have prayed for, and supported the return of the Jewish people to their ancient homeland. They came from different countries and a wide range of denominations. Some were very accomplished theologians and highly respected authors like Charles Haddon Spurgeon, Bishop Ryle of Liverpool and, of course, the great Wesley brothers. Despite this history, over the past couple of decades, some detractors in the Christian world have sought to portray Christian Zionists as a fringe movement at best, and heretical, at worst. Some in the Jewish community have also questioned the motives and expectations of Christian Zionists. Here we respond to these claims - and answer your questions about Christian Zionism.