Newsmax has recently published its 100 Most Influential Evangelicals in America list, ranking pastors, teachers, politicians, athletes, and entertainers “from all walks of life whose faith leads them to live differently and to help others in a variety of ways.” Breaking Israel News wondered: How many of these prominent Christians use their influence to support Israel through investment and advocacy? Below, find BIN’s exclusive list of the top 20 pro-Israel Christians in America.
1. Reverend Billy Graham
List Ranking: 1
In addition to opposing racial segregation in the 1950s and advising US presidents for the last five decades, Reverend Billy Graham has preached staunch support for Israel to nearly 215 million people around the world. He advocates for a strong relationship between Jews and evangelicals, saying, “The Jews are God’s chosen people. We cannot place ourselves in opposition to Israel without detriment to ourselves.”
2. Franklin Graham
List Ranking: 2
The son of Reverend Billy Graham, Franklin Graham has also paved his way to an influential ministry through Samaritan’s Purse, an organization that shares the gospel and provides disaster and humanitarian relief. He preaches supporting the State of Israel on both moral and religious grounds. After Trump’s announcement of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, the younger Graham said, “Prime Minister Netanyahu has been a friend to the US and deserves our respect.
3. Mike Huckabee
List Ranking: 4
As governor of Arkansas from 1996 to 2007, best-selling author, and talk show host, Mike Huckabee has brought pro-Israel politics to Capitol Hill and beyond. He frequently visits the Jewish State, which he calls “America’s greatest friend in the region.” Reports claim that Huckabee may become US President Trump’s ambassador to Israel, where he will oversee the relocation of the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.
4. Pat Robertson
List Ranking: 5
Best known as the host of “The 700 Club,” fewer people know that Pat Robertson is one of the leading voices on the prophetic significance of Israel. He is a proponent for the non-negotiable nature of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. He has predicted that if Jerusalem is divided, the Battle of Armageddon will take place there where “the forces of all nations come together and try to take Jerusalem away from the Jews.”
5. Jerry Falwell Jr.
List Ranking: 7
As president of Liberty University, one of the largest evangelical colleges in the US, Jerry Falwell Jr. invested $5 million of the university’s endowment in Israel in 2016, at the height of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement on US campuses. After the generous donation, he explained, “Liberty is glad to be part of supporting the only democracy that’s a close ally of the United States [in an area] that is in such turmoil right now.” He has also come out in strong support of the “special relationship with Christians and Jews that is very dear to me.
6. Mike Pence
List Ranking: 9
Mike Pence, the former Indiana governor and current US Vice President, has often spoken of how his Christian faith shapes his views on Israel. He also believes that the alliance between Israel and the US is founded on common values like freedom and democracy. Most recently, he made worldwide news for his upcoming trip to Israel in the wake of the administration’s aims to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. “Under our administration, America will always stand with Israel,” Pence said a week before Trump’s announcement.
7. Sarah Palin
List Ranking: 11
As the former governor of Alaska and vice-presidential candidate with John McCain in 2008, Sarah Palin promised to deepen the strategic partnership between Israel and the US and defend Israel’s security. “Israel is our strongest and best ally in the Middle East,” she said. She is a supporter for the expansion of settlements in the Palestinian territories.
8. Pastor John Hagee
List Ranking: 13
Pastor John Hagee is the founder and Senior Pastor of Cornerstone Church and the founder of Christians United for Israel (CUFI), the largest pro-Israel grassroots organization in the US. His A Night To Honor Israel event also sets records as one of the longest-running Christian Zionist events in America. Each year, the donations from John Hagee Ministry’s (JHM) national television audience are given out at this annual event to allow various non-profit organizations to continue their work for Israel and the Jewish people. Carrying out the Biblical mandate to bless Israel, JHM has raised over $100 million for Israeli and Jewish charities.
9. Gordon Robertson
List Ranking: 15
Gordon, Pat Robertson’s son, is the CEO of the Christian Broadcasting Network. Many of his films seek to educate the public about Israel, from Israeli technology to the Israel Defense Force (IDF) and the Zionist vision. He has expressed his hope that the Israeli government knows that the Christian community and media is a friend and “how willing they are to be of help to Israel.”
10. Dr. James Dobson
List Ranking: 18
As a prominent psychologist, Dr. James Dobson is an author on parenting and a prominent talk show host. As an outspoken supporter of Israel, he has said that Israel “exists primarily because God has willed it to exist”, but also because of American support. “If we ever abandon it,” he said, “it’s gone.” He has also declared his belief that when it comes to the Jewish people and the land of Israel, “America is stronger when it stands firmly behind its allies.”
11. Paula White
List Ranking: 20
Paula White, pastor of a Florida mega-church and television host, is often called President Trump’s spiritual adviser. She has lauded Trump for the announcement of the embassy move, saying, “Evangelicals are ecstatic, for Israel is to us a sacred place and the Jewish people are our dearest friends. The Jewish people have dedicated themselves to Jerusalem over millennia, taken pride in it, defended it with blood and treasure, and today we rejoice with them as our president has done the sensible thing—he has let the State of Israel choose for itself its own capital.” She concluded, “We call the world to pray for the peace of Jerusalem—God’s chosen city for God’s chosen people.”
12. David and Steve Green
List Ranking: 23
Founder and President of Hobby Lobby craft stores, this father-son duo operates nearly 600 stores in the US. The company has also recently opened a non-profit museum, Museum of the Bible in Washington DC, with one live exhibit featuring a Jewish scribe writing Torah Scrolls. The non-profit has financially supported Israeli organizations working in settlement archeology and Bible-based educational programs with $25,000.
13. Ralph Reed
List Ranking: 25
Ralph Reed was the first executive director of the Christian Coalition in the 1990s and served as a senior advisor to the Bush campaign. In 2002, he penned advertisements in the New York Times and Los Angeles Times entitled “We People of Faith Stand Firmly With Israel.” That year, the conservative political strategist also formed a pro-Israel organization with an Orthodox rabbi to garner Christian support for Israel, saying that Christians are “shifting the center of gravity in the pro-Israel community.” Their organization, Stand for Israel, has been likened to the “Christian AIPAC.”
14. Michele Bachmann
List Ranking: 38
Michele Bachmann, the first Republican woman in Minnesota’s congress and candidate in 2012 presidential election, prides herself on being a staunch defender of Israel. In her campaign platform, she promised to reverse pressure on Israel, which seeks to force it back to its “indefensible 1967 borders.” She has called Israel a “miracle of the hand of God” and is a firm believer that those who reject Israel will be cursed.
15. Pat Boone
List Ranking: 46
Gospel singer Pat Boone has sold more than 45 million records and uses his fame as a pro-Israel platform. His 1960’s hit “Exodus” includes the line, “This land is mine. God gave this land to me,” describing the Jewish immigrants to Palestine pre-1948. As a motivational speaker, television personality, and conservative commentator, Boone has also encouraged evangelicals in Texas to purchase land in Israel as he did, a land acquisition that he believes will speed up the arrival of the end of days.
16. Anne Graham Lotz
List Ranking: 47
Anne Graham Lotz is Billy Graham’s daughter, an author, and the founder of AnGeL ministries. She has traveled with her ministries on tours to Israel with the goal of visiting Biblical sites to “refresh” and “revive” Christian prayer life. During the 2014 Israel-Hamas war, Lotz made a solidarity trip to Israel to “show that I stand by Israel.” She continued, “I believe that [Israel] is God’s special people […] I believe it’s time for God’s people to stand up with God’s people.”
17. Rev. Samuel Rodriguez
List Ranking: 48
Reverend Samuel Rodriguez founded the largest Hispanic evangelical organization in the world, the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference. With over 40,000 members in his organization, Rodriguez is a pro-Israel activist on a large scale. He has dedicated his advocacy to combating the mainstream media’s portrayal of Israel as an aggressor by “speaking the truth about Israel” as the sole democracy in the Middle East that offers religious freedom to all. He has also said that the Jewish people can count on the support of Hispanic Evangelicals. He, like most Hispanic Evangelicals are “absolutely committed to Israel” and is concerned about the surge of anti-Semitism in the Latino world, especially among the younger generation. “We will build a firewall against anti-Semitism and we will do that with integrity and compassion,” said Rodriguez.
18. Phil Robertson
List Ranking: 51
Phil Robertson is the founder of the successful Duck Commander company and subject of the hit TV show “Duck Dynasty.” Robertson is an outspoken advocate of Israel, saying at the DC “Stop the Iran Deal” rally that he loves the country because “Israel gave the world the Bible” and Israel is the most faithful ally that the U.S. has. He stated, “[The Jews] are the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob. They wrote the Bible, for crying out loud. Therefore, you never, ever want to put them in unnecessary danger.”
19. Kay Arthur
List Ranking: 61
Kay Arthur is an award winning author and international Bible teacher. One of her bestselling books, Israel, My Beloved, retells Israel’s story and its modern day miracles. She is the CEO and co-founder of Precept Ministries International, a massive evangelical organization that preaches pro-Israel advocacy. She often leads trips to Israel and is a believer in Jewish sovereignty over Israel, as “God bequeathed Israel to the Jews.”
20. Jay Sekulow
List Ranking: 62
Jay Sekulow leads the American Center for Law and Justice and serves on President Trump’s legal team. He converted to Christianity from Judaism after encountering Jews for Jesus. Often a guest commentator on the Christian Broadcasting Network, Sekulow is an outspoken critic of the BDS movement and a strong supporter of the IDF. In March 2017, Sekulow spoke at the United Nations General Assembly about standing against BDS. He is soon releasing a book, Why Israel Matters: A Biblical, Historical, and Legal Case for the Jewish Homeland.