What do American Christians think about Israel? A new poll just released shows overwhelming support for the Jewish state.
Friends of Israel
The Joshua Fund -- a Christian humanitarian organization -- commissioned the poll and released the results during a one day conference held in Jerusalem called "Epicenter 08" best selling author Joel Rosenberg hosted the conference.
"We surveyed American Christians, both Catholics and Protestants, and we asked them a whole series of questions related to Israel and what I call epicenter, Middle East issues," Rosenberg said.
The poll showed an overwhelming majority of American Christians love Israel.
- 82 percent believe they have "a moral and biblical obligation to support Israel and pray for the peace of Jerusalem"
- 75 percent believe they have a biblical obligation to help victims of war and terrorism in israel and the middle east
- 57 percent said they desire to visit Israel.
The poll also revealed Middle East issues will affect this year's presidential election.
Forty-five percent of American Christians said they would be more likely to vote for a candidate who advocates issues like not dividing Jerusalem and protecting Israel from a nuclear Iran.
The epicenter conference looked at the threats Israel faces -- like a nuclear Iran.
The Shadow of Islam
Retired General Jerry Boykin addressed the overarching threat of radical Islam.
"My main message was this threat of radical Islam is a serious threat. We are indeed in a war of survival and it is time for people across the world, not just in Israel and not just in America; for them to take this seriously and treat it as a war and fight back," Boykin said.
In light of this threat, many said it is a pivotal time to stand with Israel.
"As the scripture says, though the whole world be gathered against them, we want them to know that as Christians, we're not," Chuck Smith, senior pastor of Calvary Chapel in California, said.
Rosenberg said, "The prophet Jeremiah said that the Lord loves Israel with an everlasting love and the question is, 'Do followers of Jesus love Israel with an everlasting, unconditional love?'"
He continued, "I think this is a moment that we need to stand with Israel and bless her as the Bible tells us to do, regardless of what U.S. foreign policy or any other nation does. This is a moment we're really going to be tested."
*Original broadcast April 13, 2008.