by Paul C. Merkley

To my Jewish friend

I am responding to your request for some insight into the premises of Christian Zionism and, more specifically, on the relationship between Christian Zionism and "dispensationalism."

The need for this arises, as you have pointed out, from the persistent propagation of the notion that Christian Zionists are all "dispensationalists." You ask (perfectly sensibly), "What is dispensationalism?" There is implied in that question the further question: If the allegation is true, why would it be a reason for despising Christian Zionists?

Years ago a prominent figure in the American Jewish community suggested, in friendly tone, that what Christians need most is an Anti-Defamation League. He was right of course, as there is for the time being no body or agency which stands ready to strike down with legal instruments those commentators or entertainers who mock the practices and beliefs of the Church or who ridicule characteristic Christian vocabulary ("born again" is the comedians' favorite) or who defame individuals who imagine that it is their task to bring "Christian values" into the public life. Defamation of Christian conscience has gone so far that it is nowadays taken as sufficient evidence of the corruptness of a political position to show that among its champions are "Evangelical" or "Fundamentalist" Christians. What responsible person would want to be found aligned with a public position taken by such people?

But think again -- for among such positions is the principled and consistent support of Israel.


JUST AS MUCH  of the most defamatory stuff about Jews and Zionism comes from Jews (Noam Chomsky and Norman Finkelstein come to mind)[1] so, increasingly, does much of the most inflammatory abuse against Christian Zionists come these days from Christians and notably from authoritative Church bodies. Today the World Council of Churches (WCC) is in the vanguard of the campaign at the United Nations to have Israel condemned for "systematic perpetration of racist crimes including war crimes, acts of genocide and ethnic cleansing." In the annual meetings of the major Protestant denominations in the United States and elsewhere around the world, there is being conducted a double-barreled campaign against Israel's right-to-life based upon two demands: (a) that Israel "dismantle" the security barrier by means of which she attempts to foil suicide-bombers and other direct assaults upon her civilian life; and (b) that churches withdraw pension funds and other assets which are invested in corporations that do substantial business with Israel.[2]

Official Church statements of at least forty years' standing have denounced Christians who are active in organizations which befriend Israel as mindless tools of Israeli politicians -- simple-minded people who are, without exception, "unfamiliar with the realities on the ground", whose vision is beclouded by "Fundamentalist" teaching taking the "heretical" form of "dispensationalist millennialism." In WCC literature and in the literature of the participant denominations, the very term "Christian Zionist" is treated as a contemptible oxymoron: Christian Zionists are, in fact, a callous, cynical, xenophobic, political lobby, controlled by a coterie of pretended Christians who are in reality instruments of right-wing Israeli politicians.

It gets worse. Defamation of Christian Zionism and Christian Zionists is no longer confined to the mainline churches but has also taken firm hold in what are normally called "Evangelical circles." An organization called Evangelicals For Middle East Understanding, whose founder is Professor Donald Wagner, believes that Christian Zionists "have surrendered the central doctrines of Christianity for a nationalist political ideology - Zionism - whose very morality is inconsistent with biblical teachings. Examination of the essential doctrines and practices of the ICEJ [International Christian Embassy, Jerusalem, one of the most effective Christian Zionist organizations] suggests that it should be declared a heretical cult."[3]

Every day, it seems, another person identified as "a well-known Evangelical academic", or "a well-known Evangelist," steps out to join the company of the cultured despisers of Christian Zionism. Among the most recent is Tony Campolo. Speaking to United Methodist Teachers in Birmingham, Alabama, in June of 2004,[4] Dr. Campolo said: "Too many Christians have become 'evangelical Zionists' who favor ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in the Middle East." If Christians had an Anti-Defamation League this would be denounced at once as inflammatory, an incitement to bigotry, a case of zionophobia, and would go at once to the courts. By what invisible chain of non-logic is the mild-mannered subscriber to a Christian Zionist journal a partner in "ethnic cleansing" -- the crime for which Slobodan Milosevic languished and died in a cell at the Hague?


THE BEGINNING OF WISDOM  with respect to our subject (the rampant defamation of Christian Zionists) is that in these times the reading public is dependent for its intellectual feeding upon an elitist culture which imagines that it has risen above religious faith. All the dominant voices in our culture (the chattering classes as Malcolm Muggeridge used to call them, the "public intellectuals" as it is now fashionable to call them) are simply bereft of any knowledge of the history or the theology of the faith-tradition which informed our civilization until the day before yesterday. Consequently, the publishers and the editors who screen the manuscript-proposals and then send out the books and the articles, the journalists and the deep-thinking talking heads on the television panels who pretend to have read the books, all bounce along on the surface of this elitist culture. The chatterers make no effort to get straight the facts about Christian faith. Indeed, it is considered a proof of one's qualification to speak about the biggest issues of life that one should betray no first-hand knowledge of the content of faith -- as, for example, the embarrassing possibility that one's parents once took one to church or Sunday School. Having been educated at the top of their field without ever having addressed the history or the doctrine of the nominal faith of their fathers and their grandfathers, our journalist and our academics feel free to utter the clichés about religious faith that circulate in the office, never looking things up, never bothering to dip into the traditional teaching, never seeking the guidance of qualified commentators on the Bible -- above all never actually consulting The Book of Books, lest a colleague drop in and see you doing it and you lose your credibility as a deep thinker.

I am for the moment speaking strictly of matters of fact which can be settled by a decent amount of research, leaving for later in this essay matters of meaning. Imagine yourself submitting to a journal on modern economics an essay with your views on banking, in which you explain that a bank is a place where money is printed. People raised in a pre-capitalist milieu probably think that that is the case, and would not question the remark, so long as it appeared in a distinguished journal; but no one, but no one, in our milieu could get away with such ignorance. I assure you that the editor of the journal will not even respond to your submitted essay if he finds the boner just suggested. But every day another book pops off the assembly line of a prestigious general publisher or a major academic publisher, pretending to be a ground-breaking contribution to understanding of the role of religion in society, and it is chock-a-block with comparable boners about basic matters of fact.

From a deep basketful of such boners which I have collected in recent months I draw, more or less at random, the observation of the author of Biblical Interpretation and Middle East Policy,[5] that "the first ten books of the Bible [are] called 'The Pentateuch.'" When a boner of this quality appears in a published work it does not merely discredit the author but it exposes the indifference of the entire cohort of editors and proofreaders to the content of our received religious tradition.

This, I suggest, is the context that you must get straight in your mind if you depend upon the published works on the subject of Christian Zionism which are being promoted in church circles and no doubt are being reviewed in some synagogue study groups as I write.

Over the past two or three years I have had opportunity to review for the book review sections of certain well-regarded Christian journals and for academic journals a number of these books, including most recently, the ones by Stephen Sizer and Irvine H. Anderson[6]. Both of these books, I find, draw sedulously and with much repetition of words upon the work of an earlier cohort of authors who in effect established the repertoire of current Christian anti-Zionism.[7] These titles all come from major publishing houses, from academic presses, from the "religious press," (Zondervans, Eerdmans), from presses identified with Christian denominations (Herald and Augsburg) or under sponsorship of ecumenical Christian organizations (such as InterVarsity Press) and some under the awesome auspices of the World Council of Churches.

A theme common to all of this literature is that Christian Zionists all depend for theological orientation and biblical hermeneutics upon a singular off-center but for a time very popular school of biblical interpretation called "Pre-millennial Dispensationalism" which originated with one John Nelson Darby (1800-1882.) Darby developed an historical schematic or taxonomy to be applied to Bible-reading under which all human history is divided into a sequence of "Dispensations," beginning with the Dispensation which prepared the world for Adam. In the progress of these dispensations, we find the terms of God's relationship with mankind changing profoundly, becoming more complex, as God reshapes the challenge that He puts to us by providing increasing insight for our journey on earth. There are seven dispensations in all. I will not explore the details. For our purposes, it is worth noting that the first is the Dispensation of "Innocence" (in the Garden of Eden) and the last is "Kingdom," this concluding Dispensation covering the entire post-biblical period and remaining open until the events of the End of Days. In the End of Days, there will be an ultimate confrontation between all the forces of darkness and all the forces of light at Armageddon, prior to which there is a spectacular partial conversion of the Jews and the "rapture" to Heaven of a select cohort of true believers known only to God.

I refrain from more detail -- for the good and sufficient reason that very few Christian Zionists today have any allegiance to these peculiar doctrines.

To sustain a Christian Zionist perspective like mine, "dispensationalism" is neither here nor there. I do have some respect for the creators of the original "dispensationalist" model and I find much that is stimulating and valuable for my faith in the Scofield Reference Bible, which for its current edition has trimmed out much of the dispensational apparatus while retaining some of the thoughtful insights in the original formulae. The problem with classical dispensationalism is that it calcified into a philosophical model. The situation will remind serious students of philosophy of history of some of the literature which emerged from great German universities in the early nineteenth century, starting with Hegel, or with some of the later system-builders like Spengler and Toynbee. Even though the passage of time has discredited most of the major premises of all of these once-esteemed philosophers of history, it is still worthwhile reading them.

But theology is not reducible to philosophy. The Living Word could no more be confined within the procrustean bed of "dispensationalism" than it could within the more spiritual-sounding but equally adamant premises of Hegel's Philosophy of History. Without going too far afield, a concrete detail of great significance for our present discussion is that right down to Israel's birthday the principal dispensers of dispensationalist wisdom were insisting that Israel would not be restored as a nation-state until after the ultimate war which would take place between Gog-and-Magog on the once side and the forces rallied by Messiah on the other.

There never was any place in classical dispensationalism for a State of Israel. From the point of view of almost all Christian Zionists, this is a fatal flaw. There are some who continue to profess faith in "dispensationalism" and who regard themselves as firm friends of Israel and who take part in pro-Israel demonstrations and so on; but since Israel came into the world they have had to twist the premises of classical dispensationalism conspicuously. The more loyal dispensationalists explain the existence of the present State of Israel as a kind of figment of the imagination, divided within itself and falling fatally short of the qualifications necessary for becoming the People worthy of the restoration of the Temple. These more earnest dispensationalists do not keep company with Christian Zionists. But then again, precisely the same division runs within the ranks of observant Jews, most of whom attach positive significance to the restoration of the state as a proof that their God is the God of History, while an adamant minority regards the present State as fraud at best, an abomination at worst.

In a recent book [8] which the eminent evangelical teacher John Stott endorses as a "ground-breaking critique of Christian Zionism ... a comprehensive overview," Stephen Sizer puts the name of Arthur James Balfour at the center of his story of the eventual triumph of the schemes of the Christian Zionists. This makes sense, as Lord Balfour was, after all, the man who secured the commitment of all the major nations of the world to a National Home for the Jews in Palestine. And who was Arthur James Balfour? According to Sizer he was "brought up in an evangelical home and was sympathetic to Zionism because of the influence of dispensational teaching." Uncultivated, naïve dim-bulb that he was, his thinking processes dulled, like those of the rest of us Christian friends of Israel today, by low-brow pamphleteering and thus easily led by the Zionists, Balfour "regarded history as an instrument for carrying-out a Divine Purpose." (Since when did this become a heresy?)

In truth, however, Lord Arthur James Balfour was none of the above. He was a member of the most prominent political family of his day, noted for its achievements in science and the arts; he had a place at the very heart of intellectual and artistic circles in his days, was educated up to his ears, and was a widely-published critical-academic philosopher -- a circumstance that earns him a long entry today in the Encyclopedia of Philosophy. The quotient of dispensationalism in Balfour's intellectual makeup was zero.

In fact, of all the major Christian Zionists whom Sizer describes as standing at the end of the line whose head is the dispensationalist prophet, John Darby, only one, William Blackstone was in fact a dispensationalist, or, for that matter, speculated at all about covenants and dispensations. Those who supported the cause of Restoration of the Jews to Israel and who held up the arms of the early Zionists (including those of Theodor Herzl) drew upon the great many-streamed literature of biblical commentary, as do Christian Zionists today when making their case that "those who bless you [Abraham and his descendants] I will bless." (Genesis 12:1-5.)

Christian Zionism is not the creation of Nineteenth Century freelance theologians. Its ultimate source is mainstream Protestant theology of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries, renewed in Anglican circles in England in the late Eighteenth Century and appearing as a significant emphasis in the preaching of the Great Revival and subsequent revivals which produced the mainstream Evangelical churches of the Nineteenth Century in the United States. Christian Zionists adhere to a wide range of hermeneutic schools and belong to churches all across the spectrum.

It is very true that Shaftesbury, Balfour, Lloyd George and others among the British statesmen and Woodrow Wilson and Harry Truman and others among the American statesmen were moved by faith in the predictive quality of Scripture and came to see a Christian duty to work to accomplish the return of the Jews to the Land of Israel; but none of these was even aware, so far as I know, of Darby or the School of Dispensationalism. The source of their interest in Restoration was the mainstream Protestant understanding of the force of Scripture.

There seems to be no way of putting a stop to this ridiculous and totally false generalization about the enslavement of the minds of Christian Zionists to Dispensationalism. It has now the same dogmatic standing in anti-Zionist thinking as the Ether Theory did in the High School Physics of the Nineteenth Century. Its propagators simply have too much invested in the clichés that spring to mind when the linkage is asserted. It is embraced officially by the World Council of Churches and promulgated by virtually of the major denominations and it is echoed sedulously by everyone who takes it upon himself to talk about Christian attitudes towards the State of Israel today.

All the several slanders which are directed against Christian Zionists are grounded in this fallacy about "the dispensationalist agenda." Somehow, the enemies of Christian Zionism imagine that merely alluding to the allegedly infamous dispensationalism and positing the connection between Christian Zionism and its doctrines will open the minds of decent people at once to horrible prospects. Naim Ateek, former Canon at the Anglican Cathedral in Jerusalem, who now conducts a full-time worldwide campaign of defamation of Israel in church circles, has written:

"[T]he Christian so-called [sic] Fundamentalists... these self-styled [sic] Evangelicals ... see in Israel the fulfilment of their eschatological interpretation of certain texts in Scripture. The existence of the State fits in with their concept of the end of times and the Second coming of Christ. Some in Israel may consider them useful friends both financially and psychologically, but those in Israel who know something about what these Fundamentalists actually believe would, I am sure, abhor and reject them. As part of their biblical understanding of the last events in history is the annihilation of two thirds of the Jews and the Christianization of the last one third."[9]

Every detail in that incredible indictment is a lie.

Liberal Christians join secular Jews and liberal-religious Jews in warning Jews in general away from the company of Christian Zionists with the motto that their zeal about prophecy is an epiphenomenon of their great zeal to convert. The fact is that all of the major Christian Zionist organizations notably, International Christian Embassy Jerusalem and Bridges for Peace, the two oldest and largest groups -- enforce strictly a written policy requiring all members to refrain from proselytism. Their practice conforms entirely to their policy.


WHAT IS NECESSARY  to sustain Christian Zionism is what the theologians used to call" the higher view of scripture" -- that is, the conviction that Scripture speaks from the perspective of eternity -- the perspective from which history is all over and its content all known. This is the perspective that none of us has of right but which, as faithful Jewish and Christian interpreters of Scripture have always maintained and maintain still today, was once given in part or transiently to the Patriarchs (beginning with Abraham) and in more-developed and more enduring forms by the classical prophets, the "Major and Minor prophets for whom are named the Books the Prophets (nevi'im) With this conviction, we embrace the capacity of Scripture to foresee some part of the content of human history which was not yet present when they spoke. We believe that they were given this gift to encourage us and to help us prepare -- to prepare us both for interim disappointment and for ultimate hope. Secular Jews and Jews of liberal religion reject the possibility of prophetic foreknowledge, just as liberal theologians do in our part of the forest.

Most people who call themselves Christian Zionists will offer you a rather modest checklist of the things we are given to see about the future -- "modest," that is, relative to the fully-detailed scenario that our critics imagine that we possess. But all of us would agree that, however much detail we think we have, the foundation text for our conviction about Israel is God's promise to Abram (later Abraham) in Genesis 12: 1-5, with special reference to verse 3: "I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you, and in you all the nations of the world shall be blessed"

Secular Jews and Jews of liberal religion reject the possibility of foreknowledge of any part of future events and thus dismiss this text along with all others that claim to present promises of God with specific content. Secular Jews and Jews of liberal religion nowadays join hands with Christian anti-Zionists to warn Jews and Christians against imagining that there is any spiritual meaning in Biblical prophecy. Not content with denigrating these convictions as lacking in intellectual worth, they believe they have a duty to warn Jews and Christians that to subscribe to any part of them makes even the mildest of persons into dangerous monsters by rendering them susceptible to the maneuvers of Israeli politicians.

Somewhere along the line, all of these enemies of Christian Zionism (the secularists, that section of observant Jews who have been raised to believe that Christians are single-mindedly dedicated to robbing Jews of their traditional faith, secularist anti-Zionists of all persuasions, and all Muslims) joined forces to promulgate the utterly groundless theory that the key to what makes Christian Zionists lethal is that they are bound together by observance of a protocol -- they are a kind of freemasonry, bound together by commitment to esoteric theories, the mysteries of Dispensationalism. This proposition has, in truth, as much going for it as the Protocols of the Elders of Zion -- and it attracts the same desperate and angry spirits. It is a blood-brother to the conspiracy theories that explain that what is really running the lives of Roman Catholics is not the Pope but Opus Dei.

Let's face it: as history has been purged from the curriculum of the schools, conspiracy theories rush in to fill the vacuum left by the need for explaining what is going on in world affairs. For those who despise Israel for her assertion of her right-to-life in defiance of all the laws of history and political economy, the conspiracy theory of choice is the one that explains professions of Christian love for Israel and for Jews as the distorted effect of a profound conspiracy, recognizable to cognoscenti as Dispensational-fundamentalism. It does not matter that you have never read a word of the dispensationalist literature. You can be sure that no one else has either -- not your editor, not your publisher, not the television news-show producer who will call you up as the expert talking head on Christian Zionism.

As for Christian teaching about End Times, here is the bottom line: There is no distinctive Christian outline regarding End Times.

You can sift through all of the books of the New Testament and find all the texts that shed the light on Christian understanding of How It All Ends (End Times, or eschatology), and you will discover that every detail of that scenario is drawn from Hebrew Scripture, from Tanach -- mostly, but not exclusively, from nevi'im. Every detail, that is, except one: namely, that Messiah when He appears will be found to be identical with the historical Jesus of Nazareth. (A subject for another time and place -- but a matter which does not in any detail affect the scenario, the sequence of events and what they will mean.) Everything else -- the restoration of all the tribes of Israel to the Land of Israel, the gathering together of the nations under Gog and Magog in fanatical determination to eliminate the People of the Beautiful Land, the sudden appearance of Messiah in Zion to defeat this confederacy, the divine intervention, the judgment against the nations, the resurrection of the dead and the judgment of every singular person who ever lived -- every detail of this is drawn from Tanach.

All the outraged huffing and puffing about the End Times zeal of fundamentalist-dispensationalist Christian crazies is first and last a tactic of displacement. It serves to redirect the animus which many liberated Jews feel towards the premises of their own religious tradition against the other; and what could be more other, more alien, to well-educated folks than Christian fundamentalism. You don't actually have to say it out loud, but echoes of the Scopes trials and images of the KKK and the lynching of Leo Frank will occur at once in informed minds. This -- need I say it? -- is all defamation.

It is the Jewish tradition, not the Christian superstructure upon that tradition, that is the source of all the themes and all the thoughts about How It All Ends. Let's put that another way. It is the whole body of Judaeo-Christian theology that these liberated souls, Jews and gentiles, are determined to put away forever, which they are trying to smother to death under the infamous label of "fundamentalism" and through fostering of the fantasy of the esoteric effects of "fundamentalist-dispensationalism."


IT DOES NOT SEEM  of any interest to Christian anti-Zionists who promote this notion of the identity of Fundamentalist-Dispensationalism with Christian Zionism that we stand today on historical ground very different from that on which Darby and his epigones stood. The Restoration of the Jews to Eretz Israel has been a fact for over sixty years. What we have to speculate about today is whether the being of Israel should be undone by human force. Anti Zionists live in the same counter-factual world as do the Muslims, who speculate about the legitimacy of Zion, and the pro-aboriginal activists whose anti-History is about a world in which America is not.

There is nothing at all esoteric or hidden or Gnostic about Christian Zionism. It draws its insights from venerable hermeneutic traditions while it addresses the most conspicuous and forceful realities in the world, the realities that dominate world news. It nurtures a careful attention to world affairs, an interest in the study of world affairs, of conditions and the largest realities going on in all parts of the world.

This brings me to my point of privilege. What has made me a Christian Zionist is reading History, lots of it, and paying respectful attention to its most conspicuous features. Nothing in the world is more conspicuous than World History. By contrast, the Christian and secular adversaries of Christian Zionism approach historical reality in a spirit of willful amnesia and denial. They have forgotten, if they ever knew, the story of the creation of the present State of Israel. Christian anti-Zionist books characteristically make no reference to the events which led to Israel's creation in 1947-1948; they prefer to discover it somewhere along the course of recent events, an obstacle to the happiness of all the other people in the Middle East -- something that was just dropped spitefully into their peaceful midst by the retreating European Empires. Thus they spare themselves consideration of such realities as the desperation of the Jewish people and the urgency of putting a State in place in British Palestine, the iron-clad promises that had been made by the League of Nations and all the major powers of the time and the solid agreement among the major superpowers.

What should strike any reader of that History of the creation of the State of Israel is how deliberately everything was done, how legitimate it all was, how carefully it was all engrossed in the public record. All to no avail -- so far as the Anti-Zionists are concerned. Anti-Zionist authors prefer counter-History: Did Israel really come into existence by decision of the nations, they ask? Is Israel "legitimate"? Does it exist? The anti-historical, deconstructionist spirit which has captured the enthusiasm of contemporary academic scholarship provides all the double-talking rhetoric to give such mindless ruminations respectability.

Denial of Israel is a hysterical fixation. It is the same old stuff about the Christ-killers that the Churches claim to have put behind them. Christian Zionists, by contrast, are realists. They talk about Israel's right-to-life, not about whether Israel exists. Christian Zionism cannot be fitted into the Dispensationalist scheme which postulates its impossibility. Zionists no longer attend conferences in which anyone proposes a theory about Israel's coming into existence. Their speculations about what is right and wrong, what should be done and not done, start from the real premise that Israel is. It is the anti-Zionist polemicists who keep up the game of speculating whether there ought to be a restoration of the Jews, a Jewish state.



1.  Paul C. Merkley, "'These Pigs on the Face of the Earth': A review of Norman Finkelstein, Beyond Chutzpah: On the Misuse of Anti-Semitism and the Abuse of History (University of California Press, 2005), Review of Books and Culture. January/February, 2006, pp. 38-39.

2. Paul C. Merkely, "It is about Israel's Right-To-Life,"

3.  Donald E. Wagner, Anxious for Armageddon (Scottsdale, PA: Herald Press. 1994), p.104.


5. Irvine H. Anderson, Biblical Interpretation And Middle East Policy: The Promised Land, America, And Israel, 1917-2002 (Gainesville: University Press of Florida. 2005)

6. Stephen Sizer, Christian Zionism: Road-Map to Armageddon? (Leicester: Inter-Varsity Press, 2004) and Irvine H. Anderson, Biblical Interpretation and Middle East Policy: The Promised Land, America, and Israel, 1917-2002 (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2005.)

7.  These latter include: Naim Ateek, Justice and Only Justice: A Palestinian Theology of Liberation (Maryknoll, NY, Orbis books, 1002); Gary M. Burge, Who Are God's People in the Middle East?: What Christians are being told about Israel and the Palestinians (Grand Rapids: Zondervan. 1993); People, Land, and State of Israel: Jewish and Christian Perspectives. Vols 22 and 23 of Immanuel (Jerusalem: Ecumenical Theological Research Fraternity in Israel, 1989); Michael Prior and William Taylor, (eds.), Christians in the Holy Land (London: World of Islam Festival Trust, 1994); Mitri Raheb, I Am A Palestinian Christian (Minneapolis: Augsburg/ Fortress, 1995); Donald E. Wagner, Anxious for Armageddon (Scottsdale, Penn.: Herald Press. 1994); Donald E. Wagner, "Evangelicals and Israel: Theological Roots of a Political Alliance," Christian Century, 4 November, 1998; James M. Wall, "Israel and the Evangelicals," Christian Century, November 1977; James M. Wall, "The View from Bethlehem," Christian Century, 19 and 26 March, 1997; Timothy P. Weber, "How Evangelicals Became Israel's Best Friend," Christianity Today, 5 October 1998; What Is Western Christian Fundamentalism? (pamphlet) (Limasol, Cyprus: Middle East Council of Churches. 1988); What is Western Fundamentalist Christian Zionism? (Limasso, Cyprus: Middle East Council of Churches, 1988); Lester Wikstrom, "The Return of the Jews and the Return of Jesus: Christian Zionism in the 1970s and 1980s," Al-Liqa' Journal (Bethlehem), May, 1994, 71-9.

8. Stephen Sizer, Christian Zionism: Road-map to Armageddon? (Leicester: Inter-Varsity Press), 2004.

9.  Naim Ateek, "An Arab-Israeli's Theological Reflections on the State of Israel After 40 Years," in People, Land and State of Israel: Jewish and Christian Perspective, Vol 22/23 of the journal, Immanuel (Jerusalem: Ecumenical Theological Research Fraternity in Israel, 1989), p. 180.

Paul Charles Merkley is the author of the Politics of Christian Zionism (Frank Cass, 1998), Christian Attitudes Towards the State of Israel (McGill-Queen's University Press, 2001) and American Presidents, Religion and Israel (Praeger, 2004.)

go back_________________________End of Story___________________________Return