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Young American Evangelical Christians shift away from support for Israel

December 5, 2017 at 12:41 pm

Activists hold placards during a pro Palestinian rally in New York, US on 2 November 2017 [Mohammed Elshamy/Anadolu Agency]

A major new survey of American Evangelical Christians has found stark generational differences over support for Israel, Haaretz reported.

According to the survey, American evangelicals under 35 are “less likely than their older counterparts to offer unquestionable support for Israel, and are more likely to hold positive views of the Palestinians”.

While 76 per cent of evangelicals over the age of 65 have a “positive” view of Israel, among evangelicals under the age of 35, the number was only 58 per cent.

Meanwhile, 66 per cent of evangelicals under 35 believe that “Christians should do more to love and care for the Palestinian people”, compared to 54 per cent of those over 65 who share this view.

Again, 41 per cent of evangelicals under 35 stated that they have “no strong views about the State of Israel”, while only 22 per cent of those over the age of 65 responded the same way.

Read: The Israelis and redefining sovereignty

Some 80 per cent of those over 65 believe “the Jewish people have a right to the Land of Israel”, compared with 61 per cent of those under 35.

Overall, the survey of 2,000 individuals shows that 25 per cent of US evangelicals support Israel “no matter what it does”, while 42 per cent support Israel in general, but not “everything it does”.

Twenty-three per cent back a peace deal that would lead to the creation of a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza, and 31 per cent say they oppose the idea; 46 per cent are “not sure”.

The sponsors of the poll, Chosen People Ministries, intended the findings to be a warning: “Overall support of evangelicals for Israel will drop significantly in the next decade if the younger generation is not educated now about its biblical importance”, the press release said.