Hall of Fame
CHRISTIAN ZIONIST HALL OF FAME
Intro to Moravians
The Moravian Church - the first Protestant Church - emerged in 15th century Bohemia and Czech Republic as the Hussite movement. While the Moravian Church emphasized evangelism, it was also known for its great respect for and dialogue with the Jewish people. It incorporated many Jewish traditions into its rituals.
Intro to Puritans
The Puritan movement arose in England in the mid-16thcentury, and later spread to the Netherlands, Ireland, and America. The movement drew heavily on the Hebrew scriptures as a model for Christian life. Many Puritan preachers taught their congregants to appreciate the Hebraic roots of Christianity and the promised restoration of the Jews.
Intro to Pietists
The Pietist movement arose in Germany in the late 17th century out of the Lutheran Church. This movement greatly influenced the Moravian Church, as well as John Wesley and the Methodist movement in England. The pietists were fascinated with their Jewish heritage. Many became Hebrew scholars. They believed that they were meant to play a key role in a divine universal plan alongside the Jews.
Henry Finch (1558-1625) was a Member of the British Parliament, Puritan, jurist and legal scholar. His seminal work,The World's Great Restoration, published in 1621, is considered to be the first clearly articulated plan for restoration. Finch taught that the biblical passages that describe a return of the Jews to their own land should be taken literally, not as allegorical references to the Church. At the time of the publication of this work he was a Member of Parliament and one of the most highly respected legal scholars in England. King James of England was offended by Finch's statement that all nations would become subservient to the Nation of Israel at the time of her restoration. As a result, Finch was stripped of his status and possessions.
Isaac de La Peyrere
Isaac de La Peyrere (1594-1676) was a Huguenot, the French Ambassador to Denmark, and the leader of a large Christian group in France. La Peyrere wrote a book entitled, Rappel des Juifs, which called for the "Restoration of Israel as the Jewish nation in the Holy Land." He sent this treatise to the French government.
Anders Pederson Kempe
Anders Pederson Kempe (1622-89) was a German theologian forced out of Stockholm because of his outspokenness regarding German Messianism. In his book, Israel's Good News, he wrote, "You heathen Christians, you let yourselves be persuaded by false teachers, ... to believe that the Jews were forever disinherited and rejected by God and that you were now the rightful Christian Israel, to possess the Land of Canaan forever."
Increase Mather (1639-1723) was a Puritan leader and a major figure in the founding of the Massachusetts Bay Colony - the first English settlement in America. He wrote more than 100 books over the course of his lifetime, the first of which was, "The Mystery of Israel's Salvation." Like many of America's earliest founders, Mather carried a strong belief in Israel's restoration - a feeling that has remained deeply embedded in the Nation's culture ever since.
Ebenezer and Joanna Cartwright
Ebenezer and Joanna Cartwright (1649) were English Puritans living in Amsterdam, who petitioned the British Government to lift the ban on Jews settling in England, and to assist them in moving to Palestine. They wrote, "That this Nation of England, with the inhabitants of the Netherlands, shall be the first and the readiest to transport Israel's sons and daughters on their ships to the land promised to their forefathers, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob for an everlasting inheritance."
Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658) led the English Revolution, and ruled the Commonwealth of Britain as Lord Protector. Cromwell is credited with re-opening the gates of England to Jewish settlement, after they had been expelled from the island 400 years earlier. He said, "And it may be, as some think, God will bring the Jews home to their station, 'from all the isles of the sea,' and answer their expectations 'as from the depths of the sea.'"
Isaac Newton (1642-1727) was a world-famous 17th century scientist, who discovered gravity and revolutionized mankind's understanding of physics. Newton studied Hebrew and believed the prophecies in the Old Testament about the Jews' return to Israel. He thought that the rebuilding of Jerusalem would take place in the late 19th century, and that the Temple would be rebuilt in the 20th or 21st century.
Joseph Priestley (1733-1804) was a famous chemist who discovered oxygen. An ardent Zionist, he was quoted as saying, "the God of Heaven, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob whom we Christians as well as you worship, may be graciously pleased to put an end to your suffering, gathering you from all nations, resettle you in your own country, the land of Canaan and make you the most illustrious...of all nations on the earth."
Johann Heinrich Jung-Stilling
Johann Heinrich Jung-Stilling (1740-1817) was a famous eye specialist and pietist. In his influential book, Das Heimweh von Heinrich Stilling, Jung-Stilling wrote, "God has proclaimed through the prophets of old that the people of Israel would be scattered throughout the world. Who can deny that this has taken place? Yet the same prophets have prophesied that in the latter days God would gather his people again from the four corners of the earth, and bring them back to the land which he promised to their fathers long ago to be an everlasting possession....The land of Palestine will again become the possession of the Jewish people."
Nikolaus Zinzendorf (1700-1760) was a German pietist and the Bishop of the Moravian Church. He oversaw the Moravian Church's revival, making it the first church to send out missionaries arouond the world. Although he emphasized missions and evangelism, Zinzendorf exhibited great respect for the Jewish people and had close Jewish friends. He believed that the end times were imminent. As a result, Zinzendorf sought to prepare the Moravian church for an imminent mass conversion of Jews by integrating Jewish study and traditions into its practice. He incorporated a prayer into the Church's liturgy, which asked the Divine "[to] restore the tribe of Judah in its time and bless its first fruits among us."
Joseph Eyre (1754-1803) was an English Evangelical leader and clergyman who founded a number of Evangelical institutions, such as The Evangelical Magazine and the London Missionary Society. He drew public attention to the ancient biblical promises that God made to Abraham, publishingObservations upon Prophecies Relating to the Restoration of the Jews.
John Milton (1608-1674) was an English poet and scholar, who wrote of Israel's restitution in his celebrated Paradise Regained. He wrote, "Yet He at length, time to himself best know remembering Abraham, by some wondrous call may bring them back." De Doctrina Christiana - which was not published until nearly 150 years after Milton's death - provides further evidence of the author's millenarian convictions and belief in Israel's revival.
Thomas Newton (1704-1782) was an English cleric, biblical scholar, and author, who served as the Bishop of Bristol. He was a universalist, but also believed that the Jews would be restored to their native land and condemned anti-Jewish prejudice. In Dissertations On The Prophecies, 1754, he wrote "The Jews are by a constant miracle preserved a distinct people for the completion of the other prophecies relating to them."
George Gawler (1796-1869) was a senior British commander at the Battle of Waterloo and the first Governor of Australia. His wrote at length about establishing Jewish agricultural colonies in the Holy Land - and worked with Sir Moses Montefiore to develop Jewish settlements there. These projects included Yemin Moshe - the first modern Jewish neighborhood to be built in Jerusalem outside of the Old City walls. His son, John Cox Gawler, took up his father's cause and published a detailed plan for settlement, which formed the basis for the first modern Jewish settlement in Palestine, Petah Tikvah.
Lord Shaftesbury (Anthony Ashley Cooper) (1801-1885) was an influential English politician, philanthropist, and one of the main proponents of Christian Zionism during the Victorian Era. In 1839 Shaftesbury published, "The State and the rebirth of the Jews" - an article that urged the Jews to return to Palestine and seize the lands of Galilee and Judea. Shaftesbury first put forward the slogan "Earth without people - people without land." His call drew a positive response from a wide range of politicians, journalists, and Christian leaders - both in Britain and America. His efforts helped to convince Lord Palmerston - the British Foreign Secretary at the time - to try and persuade the Turkish Sultan to allow significant Jewish immigration to Palestine.
Robert Browning (1812-1889) was a well-known English poet - and an expert in Jewish literature, who often read the Old Testament in the original Hebrew. He wrote in 1855, in "The Holy Cross Day", "The Lord will have mercy on Jacob yet, And again in his border see Israel yet, When Judah beholds Jerusalem, The strangers shall be joined to them; To Jacob's House shall the Gentiles cleave, So the Prophet sayeth and the sons believe."
George Eliot (1819-1880) was the pen name of author Mary Anne Evans - a famous English novelist and Evangelical Christian - who loved, supported, and encouraged Jews to reestablish the State of Israel, in particular through her novel, Daniel Deronda. First published in 1876, this work created an iconic Zionist hero. It was the most significant literary work of Zionism written by a non-Jew, the culmination of a long tradition that dated back to the Protestant idea of Restoration.
Robert Murray M' Cheyne
Robert Murray M' Cheyne (1813-1843) was a Presbyterian minister in the Church of Scotland, who authored a Church report along with Andrew Bonar on "the Condition of the Jews in their Land." Their report was widely publicized in Great Britain. It was followed by a "Memorandum to Protestant Monarchs of Europe for the restoration of the Jews to Palestine", which was printed verbatim in the London Times, igniting an enthusiastic campaign in Britain for the restoration of the Jews to their land.
John Nelson Darby
J.C. Ryle (1816-1900) was the Bishop of Liverpool and one of the most authoritative Anglican leaders of the nineteenth century. In his sermon, "Scattered Israel to be Gathered," he argued that the national restoration of Israel was so clear in scripture that denying it would be as incomprehensible as denying the divinity of Christ.
Charles Henry Church
Charles Henry Church was a British citizen of Damascus who wrote a famous letter in 1841 to Jewish philanthropist Moses Montefiore about the possibility of restoring the Jewish people to their land. He wrote, "I consider the object to be perfectly obtainable. But, two things are indispensably necessary. Firstly, that the Jews will themselves take up the matter unanimously. Secondly, that the European powers will aid them in their views...."
John Stoddard (1850-1931) was a famous American travel and hymn writer who wrote in 1897: "In a place so thronged with classic and religious memories as Palestine, even a man who has no Hebrew blood in his veins may indulge in a dream regarding the future of this extraordinary people....'Take again the land of your forefathers. We guarantee you its independence and integrity. It is the least that we can do for you after all these centuries of misery. All of you will not wish to go thither, but many will. At present Palestine supports only six hundred thousand people, but, with proper cultivation it can easily maintain two and a half million. You are a people without a country; there is a country without a people. Be united. Fulfill the dreams of your old poets and patriarchs. Go back - go back to the land of Abraham.'"
William H. Hechler
William H. Hechler (1845-1931) was a British clergyman, who became a devoted friend of Theodor Herzl and a critical supporter of the early Zionists. Hechler tutored the son of the Grand Duke of Baden - the future German Emperor. He was a strong believer in biblical prophecies of the Jewish return to Israel and worked with British Christians to aid Jewish refugees from Russian pogroms. In 1885, he was appointed chaplain to the British Embassy in Vienna, where he met Herzl. He was later an honored guest at the first Zionist conference in Basle, Switzerland, and arranged the audience between Herzl and the German Kaiser. Hechler called for "an end to the anti-Semitic spirit of hatred, which is most detrimental to the welfare of all our nations." Read More
Jean Henri Dunant
Jean Henri Dunant (1828-1910) was a Swiss Protestant humanitarian and the driving force behind the creation of the International Red Cross. In 1901, he was awarded the first Nobel Peace prize. Dunant was an ardent supporter of Jewish settlement in the Holy Land and attended the first Zionist Congress in 1897. In Herzl's closing speech at the Congress, he referred to Dunant as a Christian Zionist, which was the first time that the term was used. The State of Israel honored Dunant by planting a grove in the Jerusalem Forest just below Mt. Herzl in his name.
Laurence Oliphant (1829-1888) was a British Protestant, mystic, and member of Parliament. He traveled in the Holy Land and wrote Land of Gilead, a book that outlined a plan to begin Jewish settlement on the east bank of the Jordan. He negotiated with the Turkish government to promote Jewish settlement in the Holy Land - an effort that was partially motivated by political and economic factors, but rooted in his deep belief in the Scriptures. He later moved to Haifa where he employed Naftali Imber, the author ofHatikva, Israel's national anthem, as his secretary.
John Wesley (1703-1791) was an Anglican cleric credited with founding the Methodist denomination. His preaching notes on Romans 11:12 say "So many prophecies refer to this grand event, that it is surprising any Christian can doubt it. And these are greatly confirmed by the wonderful preservation of the Jews as a distinct people to this day. When it is accomplished, it will be so strong a demonstration, both of the Old and New Testament revelation...."
Charles Wesley (1707-1788), the brother of John Wesley, was the leader of the Methodist movement, and the author of more than 6,000 hymns. He wrote about the restoration of Israel in the hymn Almighty God of Love based on Isaiah 66:19-20 and Romans 11:26: "We know it must be done, For God hath spoke the word...rebuilt by His command Jerusalem shall rise...send then thy servants forth to call the Hebrews home, From west and east, and south, and north, let all the wanderers come."
Charles Haddon Spurgeon
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (1834-92) was England's most influential preacher and one of the most widely read men of his era. In a famous sermon in 1864, he said, "If there is anything clear and plain, the literal sense and meaning of this passage - a meaning not to be spirited or spiritualized away - it must be evident that both the two and the ten tribes of Israel are to be restored to their own land and that a king is to rule over them."
William E. Blackstone
William E. Blackstone (1860-1929) was a Chicago businessman and Evangelical Christian, who wrote several booklets predicting the Jewish return to their land. His ardent support for Zionism arose from an unwavering belief in the prophetic scriptures and a desire to see an end to Jewish persecution in Europe. In 1891, he presented President Benjamin Harrison with a petition with over 400 prominent Christian signatures calling for American support for the Jewish return. He later influenced President Woodrow Wilson to accept the Balfour Declaration. Read More
Lord Arthur James Balfour
Lord Arthur James Balfour (1848-1930) was a British Prime Minister, statesman, and the author of the seminal Balfour Declaration, which was credited as the legal foundation for the creation of the State of Israel in 1948. A deeply religious man steeped in the Bible, Balfour convinced the British War Cabinet to issue the Balfour Declaration in 1917, which called for "the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people." When speaking with Louis Brandeis about Christians who were in favor of the Zionist movement, Balfour proclaimed "I am a Zionist." Read More
Prime Minister Lloyd George
Prime Minister Lloyd George (1863-1945) was a British Prime Minister and statesman. Driven by sympathy and admiration of the Jews - and his life-long study of the bible - George conducted a large-scale offensive to gain control of Palestine, in the hope that a British Mandate in Palestine could restore it to the Jews. He regarded this as God's work.
President Woodrow Wilson
President Woodrow Wilson (1854-1924) was the U.S. President who guided American policy through World War I - and was the son, and grandson, of Presbyterian ministers. The British government refused to issue the Balfour Declaration without his support. He gave his support with reservations, concerned that there could be serious political consequences for such a declaration. Yet, he believed that returning Palestine to the Jews had divine ramifications. He told his friend, Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, "to think that the son of the manse (parsonage) should be able to help restore the Holy Land to its people."
Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson
Lt. Col. John Henry Patterson (1867-1947) was an Irish Protestant and Bible student who led the Zion Mule Corps - a group of Jewish volunteers who fought for Britain during WWI. He rejoiced at the Balfour Declaration and wrote: "Christians, too, have always believed in the fulfillment of prophecy and the restoration of the Jewish people...Nothing like this has been known since the days of King Cyrus." Patterson became a close friend of Prime Minister Netanyahu's father who named is first-born son Jonathan, after the Lt. Col. The Netanyahu family still has a silver cup with the inscription: "To my darling godson, Jonathan, from your godfather, John Henry Patterson." Yonatan Netanyahu was later killed in Uganda, during Operation Entebbe in 1976. Read More
Charles Orde Wingate
Charles Orde Wingate (1903-44) was a British officer and devout Bible believer. In 1936, he began training the Haganah - the main military force of the Jewish community in British Palestine. He used the Hebrew scriptures as a training manual and created the night squads, which included future Israeli commanders Yigal Allon and Moshe Dayan. In 1939, the British transferred him out of Palestine because of his Zionist sentiments. At his farewell he quoted Psalm 137: "If I forget thee, O Jerusalem..." and promised to return. Yet, he died before the State was born in 1948. Read More
Col. Richard Meinertzhagen
Col. Richard Meinertzhagen (1878-1967) was a British army officer who played a major role in the defeat of the Ottoman Turks in WWI. After witnessing a pogrom in Russia, he became a prominent advocate for the Jewish cause. He even met with Hitler before the outbreak of WWII to get assurances from him that the Jews of Germany would be safeguarded.
John Grauel (1917-1986) was a Methodist minister, who volunteered on the Exodus-1947 - a ship packed with 4,500 Holocaust survivors that was assaulted by the British en-route to Palestine. Grauel was the ship's only non-Jewish crew member. He rushed to Jerusalem and gave compelling testimony about the incident before the UN Special Committee On Palestine, which was charged with presenting the UN with a solution to the Arab-Jewish conflict. Grauel testified that the ship was rammed seven times, and then boarded by armed soldiers who shot and clubbed to death defenseless boys. The refugees eventually were returned to Germany. Read More
William Hull (1897-1992) was a Canadian reverend living in Jerusalem, who helped to convince the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP) - and particularly Canadian UNSCOP delegate Justice Ivan Rand - to recommend the creation of a Jewish state. Over dinner, Reverend Hull spoke to Justice Rand about the injustices visited upon the Jewish community by both the British and the Arabs. Rand later admitted that their conversation gave him new appreciation for the Zionist position. Reverend Hull also submitted a letter to the full committee, which made the case for Biblical Zionism. UNSCOP followed the lead of Justice Rand, recommending the partition of the land into separate Jewish and Arab States. This set the stage for the creation of the State of Israel on May 14, 1948.
Pres. Harry S. Truman
Pres. Harry S. Truman (1884-1972) was the U.S. President whose Southern Baptist Christian background influenced his decision to make America the first state to recognize Israel in 1948, against the advice of the State Department. When confronted with the possible retaliation of oil-rich Arab countries, he said that he would: "handle the situation in light of justice, not oil." Truman compared his role in the founding of the State to that of Cyrus, King of Persia, who enabled the Jews to return to their homeland in the sixth century BC. Read More