Item description for Christian Zionism: Road-Map to Armageddon? by Stephen Sizer...
Overview Evangelicals are increasingly polarized over whether Christian Zionism is biblical and orthodox or unbiblical and cultic. In this book the author provides a thorough examination of the historical development, variant forms, theological emphases and political implications of Christian Zionism. Addresses the debate over Christian Zionism Traces historical development of the idea Repudiates both nationalistic Zionism and anit-Semitism
Publishers Description The term "Zionism" was first coined in the late nineteenth century, and referred to the movement for the return of the Jewish people to an assured and secure homeland in Palestine. Ironically, this vision was largely nurtured and shaped by Christians long before it received widespread Jewish support. The origins of "Christian Zionism" lie within nineteenth-century British premillennial sectarianism, but by the early twentieth century it had become a predominantly American dispensational movement, and pervasive within all main evangelical denominations. The contemporary Christian Zionism movement emerged after the "Six Day War" in Israel in 1967, and it has had a significant influence on attitudes towards the ongoing Palestinian-Israeli conflict in the Middle East. Evangelicals are increasingly polarized over whether Christian Zionism is biblical and orthodox or unbiblical and cultic. In this book Stephen Sizer provides a thorough examination of the historical development, variant forms, theological emphases and political implications of Christian Zionism. His excellent and informative survey is interwoven with critical assessment that repudiates both nationalistic Zionism and anti-Semitism.
Citations And Professional Reviews Christian Zionism: Road-Map to Armageddon? by Stephen Sizer has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
Christianity Today - 01/01/2008 page 61
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Studio: InterVarsity Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.12" Width: 5.91" Height: 0.85" Weight: 0.98 lbs.
Release Date Dec 1, 2005
Publisher IVP-InterVarsity Press
ISBN 0830853685 ISBN13 9780830853687
Availability 0 units.
More About Stephen Sizer
Stephen Sizer is the vicar of Christ Church, Virginia Water, Surrey (England), and a visiting lecturer at Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, and various other seminaries and theological colleges in the United States, Britain and the Middle East. He is chairman of the International Bible Society U.K. and a director and trustee of the Amos Trust, Friends of Sabeel and Highway Projects. Sizer is the author ofA Panorama of the Bible Lands and In the Footsteps of Jesus and the Apostles. He has written extensively on the church in the Middle East, the ethics of pilgrimages, dispensationalism and Christian Zionism. He is a frequent visitor to the Middle East.
Reviews - What do customers think about Christian Zionism: Road-Map to Armageddon??
Whacked author provides his whacky views but good survey of a whacky cult Mar 12, 2007
What happens when you sever the link of interpretation (hermeneutics) from authority?
The answer is; a lot of whacky interpretations that can each claim to be as legitimate as any other interpretation asserted by no other authority than...uhhhhh....errrrrr...let me get back to you on that.
This is why we have a theological and international lobbying group known as Christian Zionism. But "Christian Zionism" probably is more accurately called Calvinist Zionism, since such an ideological construct could not be confected in Orthodoxy or Catholicism, or in the case of Sizer, Anglicanism.
Sizer provides an excellent summary and survey of the historical roots and current status of the Christian Zionism movement, although with a bit too much emphasis on the British dimensions which, frankly, are infinitesimal and overwhelmed by USA mega-Churches. He waffles a little too freely on its origins in the "Six Day War" in Israel in 1967, when Israel was attacked and repelled six armies (and conquered territory as a result). But Sizer does provide a useful examination of the historical development, variant schools, theological whacked out interpretations (only in King James English could you get these ideas) and some of the political implications of Christian Zionism. However, throughout the work is a repellent repudiation of Zionism itself.
Perhaps unintentionally, Sizer provides fire for the anti-Israel crowd, and like Pagan reviewer Malter, I too would probably fall into the "Christian Zionist" camp for my views under his critical framework, even though I'm an Indult Latin Mass Catholic and certainly no apologist for lots of the inhuman thuggary of some of Israel's policies. But Sizer falls into the familiar and intellectually indefensible camp of "everybody except the Jews can have [X]."
Aliyah of Jews to Israel? Sizer says this is bad. Wonder what he says about all the folks descended from Eastern European immigrants who are now westernized and have returned to rebuild the infrastructure of their grandparent's nations devastated by Russian occupation. Or should we kick the Zulus out of South Africa, since they came after the Dutch (who came after the Khoisan) or is it okay for the diaspora Zulus to go back to SA now that there is black majority rule? Jews live in the West Bank? Sorry, Jordan invaded Israel and then lost that front in the six day war: you take a risk, you may loose some territory and Jordon lost the West Bank. Jerusalem to be recognized internationally as Israel's capital? Why not? It effectively really is. Jews rebuild their Temple? From Buddhists to Hindus to animists all over the globe, folks who live in places build or rebuild their houses of worship (except CoE types like Sizer, they like all the ruins Henry the VIII left....so picturesque). State religion of Judaism? Bad in Sizer's world. But Sizer should check the mirror, he is a Church of England priest, a *state* religion. I'm sure he'd never write a book saying Thailand and her King had to disavow being Theravada Buddhist and retreat from the southern Thai territory of the Malaysian peninsula because there were Muslims there (who came after the Buddhists, BTW). Yep, any nation or peoples in the world can do all these things except all the special rules racists like Sizer set up for Jews.
So if you can get past Sizer's clear anti-Israel rhetoric and Chairmanship of the-special-rules-for-Jews committee, you've actually got a pretty good survey of the whacked Christian Zionist movement.
superb!! Nov 9, 2006
Timely, the best information I have read about the topic, and an excellent presentation of content!
A fantastic, well researched book. Jun 26, 2006
Sizer has written a thorough and very readable overview of the Christian Zionist movement. After an introduction which defines both Zionism and Christian Zionism, the book is broken into three sections:
The first explores the historical roots of Christian Zionism beginning with the "proto-Zionism" of the 1700's. I was particularly fascinated to learn about the role that the Napoleonic Wars played in the seeds of Christian Zionism. Sizer goes on to delineate the birth and development of Dispensationalism; which was initially viewed as a novel and peculiar form of eschatology but has become widespread in the U.S. over the last 200 years and has served as the springboard for the Christian Zionist movement. Sizer methodically traces the trajectory of Dispensationalism from Irving to Darby to Scofield to Lindsay (and points in-between) and does an excellent job of explaining the relationships between the various forms of Dispensationalism and Zionism.
The second section of the book explores the theology behind Christian Zionism. Sizer begins by explaining the "literal futurist hermeneutic" (in other words, method of study) which is the fountainhead from which Dispensationalism/Zionism springs. I thoroughly enjoyed this section of the book as Sizer examined Zionist theological views about the relationship between the Jewish people and the Christian church, the return of Jews to Israel, the status of Jerusalem, the rebuilding of the temple, etc.
The third section looks at the political implications of Christian Zionism. This was the most sobering and chilling part of the book.
The book ends by setting forth a series of conclusions based on the material covered in the preceding sections.
Sizer's writing style is no-nonsense and free of hype. Although he is obviously a scholar and provides copious footnotes, the book is very accessable and at under 300 pages is a quick read.
I am a Christian who is actively involved in ministry and have gradually come to reject the "Left Behind" Dispensational theology that trickled down to me through the 700 Club, TBN, Calvary Chapel, etc. There are so many people that I wish I could get this book into the hands of and convince them to read it with an open mind and heart.
I have a fairly extensive library of Christian/theological books and this one will be located in a place where I can easily access it because I expect to be referencing it over and over again.
Excellent Book! May 3, 2006
It was very refreshing to see that others are finally picking up on something that I have been trying to explain to people about for years.
Sizer puts it in easy to understand terms and presents it very well. I will refer friends to Sizer's book now rather than try to explain these ideas to people from now on.
It is so hard to get people to open their minds to these truths after they have been bombarded for so many years by the sadly unscriptural beliefs of authors like Tim Lahaye and Hal Lindsey.
I thank you Stephen Sizer!
Racist garbage Feb 4, 2006
It's certainly true that religious fanatics often have views about Israel. And we ought to speak out against racism, dishonesty, and immorality disguised as piety. Maybe that is what Sizer thinks he's doing. But in my opinion, this horrible book is simply part of the problem.
Sizer regards the fact that some Jews are permitted to have human rights in Israel as an injustice! He implies that the existence of Jews in Israel threatens the existence of Arabs there, while in fact it is Arab extremists who are threatening the rather small nation of Israel. He does not deign to recognize the fact that many people support Israel in order to support human rights for all, instead implying that only misguided religious fanatics could possibly sympathize with Israel's right to exist.
I'm a Pagan, and I regard Jews, Muslims and Christians as a bunch of atheists. But I sure must look like a Christian Zionist to someone like Sizer! After all, he complains that they stand with Israel! And I stand with Israel. In addition, they support the aliyah of Jews to Israel. I do too. They support the right of Jews to live in the disputed West Bank. Once again, so do I! They want Jerusalem to be recognized internationally as Israel's capital. And so do I. They think Jews who wish to do so ought to rebuild their Temple. I think that would be a good idea as well: I can see that many Jews consider Judaism to be a Temple-based religion, and I don't want to deny Jews, and Jews alone, a right to have a Temple.
Sizer also says that Christian Zionists "oppose peace." Well, I'm for peace. And I certainly feel that Sizer himself opposes it, preferring to support a war against Israel. I also suspect that many Christian Zionists support peace as well, given that war would threaten Israel's existence.
Sizer appears to boast about the anti-Israeli language from the Durban "anti-racism" conference of 2001. He regards the Old City of Jerusalem as Arab in international law. He even considers opposition to a thug, Arafat, as showing a hatred for Arabs! This latter attitude is totally outrageous. Is opposition to the German leader of the late 1930s a display of hatred of Germans? Of course not.
I feel that Sizer is uncritically endorsing and justifying racist and apartheid politics in the Arab world. I think that he uses the support some Christians show for human rights in Israel, Jewish sovereignty in their homeland, or Jewish sovereignty in their capital city as a reason to oppose all these things. And I think this is a very arbitrary and counterproductive attitude.