newsU.S.-Israel Relations

Pompeo tops list of Israel’s Christian allies

The Washington-based advocacy group Israel Allies Foundation releases the list annually.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers remarks about snapback sanctions on Iran, at the State Department in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 21, 2020. Credit: U.S. State Department Photo by Ron Przysucha.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers remarks about snapback sanctions on Iran, at the State Department in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 21, 2020. Credit: U.S. State Department Photo by Ron Przysucha.

Former U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo heads a list of Israel’s top 50 Christian allies around the globe for their unwavering support for the Jewish state.

The Israel Allies Foundation, an advocacy group based in Washington, D.C., that works largely with evangelical leaders globally at a time of growing faith-based diplomacy, released the annual listing on Friday, ahead of the Feast of the Tabernacles.

Pompeo is a former CIA director and, as secretary of state in the administration of former President Donald Trump, he advocated for Israel, including moving the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem, recognizing Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights and supporting the Jewish state’s right to its biblical heartland.

The next on the list was Jair Bolsonaro, the former conservative president of Brazil who brought relations between Brazil and Israel to new levels.

Christian religious leaders

Among the notable Christian ministry honorees on the list are John Drew Sheard Sr. (No. 8), presiding bishop and chief apostle of the Church of God in Christ, the largest U.S. African-American Pentecostal denomination.

Last year, Sheard led nearly 150 delegates and 30 representatives of the National Organization of Black Elected Legislative Women on a tour of Israel, during the first official visit to the Holy Land by a top leader of the church.

The list includes Joni Lamb (No. 7), co-founder of the faith-based Daystar Television Network, who “provides significant financial assistance to the State of Israel,” per the foundation.

“My deeply held faith and conviction has aligned me to stand with and support Israel in every possible way,” said Pastor Paula White, a televangelist and former White House adviser on faith, who is also on the list (No. 5).

Pastor John Hagee, founder and chairman of Christians United for Israel, is number six on the list. (Earlier this year, he told JNS about his first visit to Israel 45 years ago.)

Mike Huckabee (No. 9), a Baptist minister and former Arkansas governor, is another prominent member of the list.

The publication of the fourth annual list, which comes amid burgeoning relations between Israel and the evangelical Christian world internationally, is timed to coincide with the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, which many Christians refer to as the Feast of the Tabernacles. The latter holds special meaning to Bible-believing Christians due to a verse in Zechariah that predicts an era when individuals from every nation will come to Jerusalem to celebrate the holiday. 

Thousands of Christian supporters of Israel from around the world are expected in Jerusalem next week for the annual Feast of the Tabernacles, the largest annual tourism event of the year.

‘The impact of their support’

“We are honored every year to recognize these incredible men and women of faith from across the world,” stated Josh Reinstein, president of the foundation that publishes the list.

“It is due to their years of hard work that we are seeing embassies moved to Jerusalem, antisemitism called out and pro-Israel policies enacted at the highest levels of government,” he added. “The impact of their support is truly limitless.”

Founded 15 years ago, the foundation has emerged as a powerhouse in mobilizing support for Israel worldwide through faith-based diplomacy. Its ever-growing network includes more than 50 pro-Israel parliamentary caucuses around the globe based on shared Judeo-Christian values.

“No matter where you live, you, too, can participate in what God is doing here in the land of Israel,” stated Jürgen Bühler, president of the International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem.

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