IS JESUS THE MESSIAH? A REVIEW OF CHRISTIANZIONIST BELIEF
By Pastor Dory Steven Brooks, CBIA
A fast-growing segment of Fundamentalist and Evangelical
Christianity is adopting a belief-system known as "Christian
Zionism." It is troubling that this pseudo-Christian philosophy
has received relatively little examination and criticism from
Christian leaders. Some mainstream church bodies do oppose it,
but for mainly political reasons. In particular, those who
advocate a two-state solution in Palestine are perturbed that the
Christian Zionists are opposed to any concessions by the Israeli
state that might lead to peace with their Palestinian neighbors.
Even the liberal National Council of Churches website warns,
"Unfortunately it has influence in American churches, to the
point where many well-meaning Christians are swayed to support
particularly destructive directions in U.S. foreign policy with
regard to the Middle East."
While politics is important in today's world, yet little is
said about Christian Zionism's theology and its specific Biblical
interpretation. For example, Dr. Antonios Kireopoulos stated, "it
is a manipulation of Christian scripture and teaching," but gave
no specifics. Let us review what these people teach about the
The leading proponent of Christian Zionism in the world
today is San Antonio, Texas minister, John Hagee. His treatise on
this subject, "In Defense of Israel" published in 2007, seems to
be nothing less than a radical deliberate denial of New Testament
teaching concerning Christ and salvation. However, rather than
openly denying the words of Scripture, he seems to subtly and
shrewdly undermine its teachings. Let us look at a few examples:
Hagee insists there is "not one verse of Scripture in the
New Testament that says that Jesus came to be the Messiah"
(p.136). In fact, he claims that the Jews were never told that
Jesus was the Messiah. Jesus, he says, even refused to be the
Messiah! Do you remember reading that in your Bible? This line of
argument serves the purpose of disapproving Jewish evangelism and
excusing Jewish unbelief. Therefore, the argument goes, "How can
the Jews be blamed for not accepting what was never offered?"
(ibid.) If you think such remarks are only the aberrant mindless
ramblings of an unimportant crackpot, the fact is that Rev. Hagee
boasts a congregation of 14,000 members and an audience of
several millions through his speaking and book sales. He is
without doubt one of the most influential religious leaders in
Much of Hagee's argument rests upon the supposition that
there were four cups of wine at Christ's Last Supper at the time
of Passover. Jewish tradition designated these Passover cups as:
Remembrance, Redemption, Salvation, and Messiah. Hagee claims
that Jesus did not drink the fourth cup, signifying that He was
rejecting any role as Messiah. However, Hagee does not give his
readers the source of this, leaving the implication that it is
Scripture-based. In actuality, however, two medieval Jewish
rabbis originated the "four cups" tradition, according to the
Orthodox Jewish website "askmoses.com." One was the famous
Kabbalist, Nahmanides, whose full name was Rabbi Moses ben
Nachman Girondi. Bonastruc ca Porta, usually known by his
acronym, Ramban. He lived 1194 to 1270, about 1,200 years after
Jesus' time. The second rabbi helped develop this custom was a
leading medieval Jewish scholar, Obadiah ben Jacob Sforno, an
Italian rabbi and philosopher who lived 1475 to 1550.
It is therefore a fact that a couple of medieval rabbis - a
Kabbalist and a philosopher developed the tradition of having
four cups of wine at Passover. They did attempt to give it an
ostensible Old Testament basis with their own rabbinic
interpretation of Exodus 6:6-8. These verses read, "Wherefore say
unto the children of Israel, I am the LORD, and I will bring you
out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you
out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out
arm, and with great judgments: And I will take you to me for a
people, and I will be to you a God: and ye shall know that I am
the LORD your God, which bringeth you out from under the burdens
of the Egyptians. And I will bring you in unto the land,
concerning the which I did swear to give it to Abraham, to Isaac,
and to Jacob; and I will give it you for an heritage: I am the
There are actually five expressions of redemption here, in
which God says, "I will bring you out," "I will remove your
bondage," "I will redeem you," "I will take you for a people,"
and "I will bring you into the land." The fourth statement, which
promises Israel's nationhood, was interpreted by these medieval
rabbis as promising a future political Messiah who would deliver
Israel from foreign enemies and create an independent nation.
However, turning this passage into a mystical command to
assign four (or even five) named cups of wine at Passover first
developed over 1,200 years after Christ - hardly proof that Jesus
rejected His Messiahship? (Note that Scripture knows nothing
about four or five cups of wine at Passover: Lev. 23:13).
(On this Website you will find a good study called "Was the
Passover a Jewish Seder?" - Keith Hunt)
What do the Scriptures say about Jesus' Messiahship? A few
verses from the Gospels (using here the Amplified Version) should
settle the issue: Mark 14:61-62 reads, "Again the high priest
asked Him, Are You the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One),
the Son of the Blessed? And Jesus said, I AM; and you will [all]
see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power (the
Almighty) and coming on the clouds of heaven."
In John 4:25-26 we are told, "The woman said to Him, I know
that Messiah is coming, He Who is called the Christ (the Anointed
One); and when He arrives, He will tell us everything we need to
know and make it clear to us. Jesus said to her, I who now speak
with you am He."
John 10:24-25 says, "So the Jews surrounded Him and began
asking Him, How long are You going to keep us in doubt and
suspense? If You are really the Christ (the Messiah), tell us so
plainly and openly. Jesus answered them, I have told you so, yet
you do not believe Me. The very works that I do by the power of
My Father and in My Father's name bear witness concerning Me
[they are My credentials and evidence in support of Me]."
Are these and other such verses not found in Rev. Hagee's
Other strange statements he makes are not only unbiblical,
but also run completely contrary to the New Testament, which is
the foundational belief of the Christian faith. Hagee claims to
be "believing the same Scriptures as the Jews" (p.13), which
therefore, I presume, does not include the New Testament! He
states that "The Old Jerusalem" is his "spiritual home"; in other
words, his spiritual home is not the New Covenant with its New
Jerusalem! (p.12) He states, "The Shekinah [i.e., Holy
Spirit-jsb] rests on a wall in Jerusalem" (p.13); can he not find
the Holy Spirit in the hearts of Christians? In actual fact, the
Old Testament tells us that the Holy Spirit left Jerusalem in
ancient times due to the people's lack of faith and obedience to
God (Ezk.11:23). In 587 B.C. the Babylonians conquered, de-
stroyed, and exiled the nation of Judah, razing the Temple of
Jerusalem and its walls to the ground, all due to God's judgment.
(Isa.10:5-6) Perhaps Hagee's understanding of the Old Testament
is just as lacking as his exposition of the New Testament.
Rev. Hagee states that he purchases and reads Jewish books
"because the intellectual foundation of my life's work" is in
them (p.15). Is it strange that a Christian minister cannot find
the foundation of his faith in the New Testament and the Words of
Jesus? Apparently, the Jewish books that form the basis of his
theology are medieval mystics and Kabbalists, as evidenced by his
We have a responsibility to ask questions when a supposedly
Christian minister never seems to profess belief in the saving
power of Christ, claims that the children of God are not
Christians but Jews (p.51), and ridicules the New Testament as
"what sponsored the Crusades, the Inquisition, and ultimately
produced the Holocaust" (p.158). Perhaps most telling of his true
religious convictions is his statement that, "The only theology
God ever created was Judaism" (p.96).
In denying that Jesus was the Messiah, Hagee certainly seems
to be denying that His blood sacrifice had any real importance.
Accordingly, it is not surprising that Hagee declares that
Abraham's sacrifice in Genesis 15:7-12 is "the most spectacular
blood covenant" (p.162). In other words, he is implying that
Jesus' blood shed at Calvary was not as efficacious or essential
for redemption as was the Old Covenant. If so, Abraham's offer of
sacrificial animals was of more value than the death of Jesus.
This "Anti-Messiah" religious conviction of Hagee and the
Christian Zionists is therefore nothing less than a rejection of
Christ and His blood shed for sin. Few of their misguided
followers probably ever stop to consider that if Jesus was not
the Jewish Messiah, neither could his blood save the Gentiles,
either. This doctrine makes Jesus out to be a bald-faced fraud
and charlatan, and His followers to be religious fools; but those
whose faith is in Christ and Scripture know who the real
charlatan is. It is unbelievably sad that millions of Christians
can so easily be misled by such false teaching; a sad sign of the
times in which we live.
From the November 2010 "Thy Kingdom Come" - a publication of The
Association of the Covenant People, Burnaby, B.C. Canada.
Indeed, Jesus said that before He came again MANY false prophets
would arise. Some are false teachers who admit Jesus is the
Christ (the Roman Catholic church is the top example of that),
then some are false teachers who go under Christian-Zionist.
And as you have seen so-called "ministers" as John Hagee have
tens of thousands of followers around the world.
Christian religious deception is steaming along as it rolls down
the hillside to the ditch of destruction. For when Jesus comes
ALL false religions and false teachings of Christendom will crash
into oblivion, as the true knowledge of the Lord will cover this
earth as the waters cover the sea beds. And there will be a
restitution of all things.