Skip to main content Accessibility help
Hostname: page-component-768ffcd9cc-w9xp6 Total loading time: 0.436 Render date: 2022-11-30T07:57:46.465Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "displayNetworkTab": true, "displayNetworkMapGraph": false, "useSa": true } hasContentIssue true

“I Will Bless Those Who Bless You”: Evangelicalism and Support for Israel in Latin America

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  17 December 2021

Tom Ziv*
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel
Corresponding author: Tom Ziv, E-mail:


The relations of the Evangelical movement and Israel have drawn the attention of many scholars of religion, public opinion, and political science in the last two decades. This study examines the influence of Evangelicals on their country's policy toward Israel. I conduct the first quantitative, cross-national research, investigating the links between the size of the Evangelical population of a country and its support for Israel. Analyzing 198 UN General Assembly votes of 18 Latin American countries from 2009 to 2019, my results show that as the Evangelical population in a country grows, so does its support for Israel. Unpredictably, I also find that a state of armed conflict between Israel and the Palestinians does not decrease the support for Israel.

Copyright © The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of Religion and Politics Section of the American Political Science Association

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)


Aguirre, L (2018) In Latino Coalition for Israel. “Evangelical Leaders Applaud Guatemala Decision to Recognize Jerusalem as Israel's Capital.” Charisma News. January 26. (Viewed on 6.14.2021).Google Scholar
AJN (2018) México: Multitudinaria Marcha de Gloria Cristiana en 70 Aniversario de la Independencia de Israel. AJN, April 2. (Viewed on 10.5.2021).Google Scholar
Almond, G (1960) The American People and Foreign Policy. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
Alterman, E (1998) Who Speaks for America? Why Democracy Matters in Foreign Policy. New York: Cornell University Press.Google Scholar
Aurora (2019) Cristianos Marchan en República Dominicana En Apoyo a Israel y Contra el Antisemitismo. Arurora, April 4. (Viewed on 10.5.2021).Google Scholar
Barro, RJ and Lee, JW (2005) IMF programs: Who is chosen and what are the effects?. Journal of monetary Economics 52(7), 12451269.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Baumgartner, JC, Francia, PL and Morris, JS (2008) A Clash of Civilizations? The Influence of Religion on Public Opinion of U.S Foreign Policy in the Middle East. Political Research Quarterly 61(2), 171179.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
BBC (2019, November 22) (Viewed on 6.17.2021).Google Scholar
Beal, C and Stangler, J (2009) Brazil's Evangelical Turn. The Guardian, September 29. (Viewed on 10.12.2020).Google Scholar
Bearce, DH and Bondanella, S (2007) Intergovernmental Organizations, Socialization, and Member-State Interest Convergence. International Organization 61(4), 703733.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bebbington, DW (2003) Evangelicalism in Modern Britain: A History from the 1730s to the 1980s. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Berman Jewish Data Bank (2018) World Jewish Database. (Viewed on 7.5.2020).Google Scholar
Brog, D (2016) Standing with Israel: Why Christians Support Israel. Florida: Charisma Media.Google Scholar
Brookings Institution (2015) What Americans (especially evangelicals) Think About Israel and the Middle East. (Viewed on 1.5.2020).Google Scholar
Burge, GM (2010) Jesus and the Land: The New Testament Challenge to “Holy Land” Theology. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic.Google Scholar
Carroll, J (2002) Constantine's Sword: The Church and the Jews—A History. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.Google Scholar
Chesnut, A (2019) In Nathalia Passarinho. “Por que Igrejas Evangélicas Ganharam tanto Peso na Política da América Latina? Especialista Aponta 5 Factores”.Google Scholar
Dame, L (2018) Growing Evangelical Caucus will have 91 Congressmen in congress [in Portuguese]. Agencia Brasil, October 18. (Viewed on 6.10.2021).Google Scholar
De Paula, O (2021) Dep. Otoni de Paula Registra Nota Pública em Solidariedade e Pela Paz em Israel. ParlaTube Brazil, on Youtube, May 21. (Viewed on 6.12.2021).Google Scholar
Dixon, WJ (1981) The Emerging Image of UN Politics. World Politics 34(1), 4761.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Dreher, A, Nunnenkamp, P and Thiele, R (2008) Does US Aid Buy UN General Assembly Votes? A Disaggregated Analysis. Public Choice 136(1–2), 139164.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Durbin, S (2013) ‘I Will Bless Those Who Bless You’: Christian Zionism, Fetishism, and Unleashing the Blessings of God. Journal of Contemporary Religion 28(3), 507521.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Evans, M (2018) In Loveday Morris, Michelle Boorstein and Ruth Eglash. “Long, Uneasy Love Affair of Israel and U.S. Evangelicals may have Peaked”. The Washington Post. January 27. (Viewed on 6.10.21).Google Scholar
Flores-Macías, GA and Kreps, SE (2013) The Foreign Policy Consequences of Trade: China's Commercial Relations with Africa and Latin America, 1992–2006. The Journal of Politics 75(2), 357371.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Freston, P (1993) Brother Votes for Brother: The New Politics of Protestantism in Brazil. In Garrard-Burnett, V and Stoll, D (eds), Rethinking Protestantism in Latin America. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, pp. 66110.Google Scholar
Freston, P (2020) In Daniela Kresch. “Cristãos Sionistas Substituem Judeus de Esquerda no Apoio a Israel”. Folah, January 25. Scholar
Froese, P and Mencken, FC (2009) A US Holy War? The Effects of Religion on Iraq War Policy Attitudes. Social Science Quarterly 90(1), 103116.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Furia, PA and Lucas, RE (2006) Determinants of Arab Public Opinion on Foreign Relations. International Studies Quarterly 50(3), 585605.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gartzke, E (2000) Preferences and the Democratic Peace. International Studies Quarterly 44(2), 191212.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Gómez, E (2019) Cristianos se Reúnen en el Interior de Colombia para Bendecir a Israel. Aurora, August 26. (Viewed on 6.14.21).Google Scholar
Green, JC (2004) The American religious landscape and political attitudes: A baseline for 2004. document obtained via download from pewforum. org/publications/surveys/green-full. pdf (accessed 5 August 2011), 14, pp 1–57.Google Scholar
Gries, PH (2015) How Ideology Divides American Liberals and Conservatives Over Israel. Political Science Quarterly 130(1), 5178.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Grin, M, Gherman, M and Caraciki, L (2019) Beyond Jordan River's Waters: Evangelicals, Jews, and the Political Context in Contemporary Brazil. International Journal of Latin American Religions 3(2), 253273.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Guth, JL (2011) Religious Factors and American Public Support for Israel: 1992–2008. Available at SSRN 1912673.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Hagee, J (2011) Earth's Final Moments: Powerful Insight and Understanding of the Prophetic Signs That Surround Us. Florida: Charisma Media.Google Scholar
Hagee, J (2016) in David Borg. Standing With Israel: Why Christians Support Israel. Florida: Charisma Media.Google Scholar
Haynes, J (2008) Religion and Foreign Policy Making in the USA, India and Iran: Towards A Research Agenda. Third World Quarterly 29(1), 143165.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Holsti, OR (2004) Public Opinion and American Foreign Policy. Michigan: University of Michigan Press.Google Scholar
Hummel, DG (2019) Covenant Brothers: Evangelicals, Jews, and US-Israeli Relations. Pennsylvania: University of Pennsylvania Press.Google Scholar
Hunter, W and Power, TJ (2019) Bolsonaro and Brazil's Illiberal Backlash. Journal of Democracy 30(1), 6882.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
I24News (2019) Full interview with Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez. I24News English on Youtube September 15. (Viewed on 6.9.2021).Google Scholar
Inbari, M and Bumin, KM (2020) American Evangelicals and the Arab-Israeli Conflict. Journal of Church and State 62(4), 603629.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Inbari, M, Bumin, KM and Byrd, MG (2021) Why Do Evangelicals Support Israel? Politics and Religion 14(1), 136.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Israel Allies Foundation. Member Nations. (Viewed on 6.6.21).Google Scholar
Israel Central Bureau Statistics. Export and Import by Commodities and Countries. (Viewed on 12.27.20).Google Scholar
The Israeli Export Institute. Export Trends—Israel and Lain America. (Viewed on 9.6.2021).Google Scholar
Jelen, TG (1994) Religion and Foreign Policy Attitudes: Exploring the Effects of Denomination and Doctrine. American Politics Quarterly 22(3), 382400.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kacowicz, AM (2017) Triangular Relations: Israel, Latin American Jewry, and Latin American Countries in a Changing International Context, 1967–2017. Israel Journal of Foreign Affairs 11(2), 203215.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Keinon, H (2017) Netanyahu Lands in Argentina. The Jerusalem Post, September 11. (Viewed on 6.9.2021).Google Scholar
Kilde, JH (2004) How Did Left Behind's Particular Vision of the End Times Develop? In Forbes, BD and Kilde, JH (eds), Rapture, Revelation, and the End Times. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 3370.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kresch, D (2020) Cristãos Sionistas Substituem Judeus de Esquerda no Apoio a Israel. Folah, January 25. (Viewed on 6.6.2021).Google Scholar
LaFranchi, H (2006) Evangelized Foreign Policy? The Christian Science Monitor. March 2. (Viewed on 6.10.2021).Google Scholar
Lagos, M (2019) In Natalia Passarinho. Cómo las Iglesias Evangélicas han Logrado Ganar tanto Peso en la Política de América Latina. BBC, April 17. (Viewed on 24.5.2021).Google Scholar
Lifeway Research (2018) Evangelical and Non-evangelical Voting & Views of Politics in America. (Viewed on 12.27.20).Google Scholar
Lifeway Research (2020) 3 in 5 Evangelicals live in Asia or Africa. (Viewed on 7.6.21).Google Scholar
Lissardy, G (2018) The Newest Political Force: How Evangelicals Emerge on the Power Map in Latin America [in Spanish]. BBC Mondo, April 17. (Viewed on 10.12.202).Google Scholar
Mayer, JD (2004) Christian Fundamentalists and Public Opinion Toward the Middle East: Israel's New Best Friends? Social Science Quarterly 85(3), 695712.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mead, WR (2006) God's Country. Foreign Affairs 85(5), 2444.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mearsheimer, JJ and Walt, SM (2007) The Israel Lobby and US Foreign Policy. New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar
Miller, PD (2014) Evangelicals, Israel and US Foreign Policy. Survival 56(1), 726.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Milne, B (2009) Know The Truth: A Handbook of Christian Belief. Illinois: InterVarsity Press.Google Scholar
Mitchell, C (2018) Guatemala Opens Embassy in Jerusalem. CBN News, May 16. (Viewed on 3.18.2021).Google Scholar
Nelsen, BF, Guth, JL and Fraser, CR (2001) Does Religion Matter? Christianity and Public Support for the European Union. European Union Politics 2(2), 191217.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Neto, OA and Malamud, A (2015) What Determines Foreign Policy in Latin America? Systemic Versus Domestic Factors in Argentina, Brazil, and Mexico, 1946–2008. Latin American Politics and Society 57(4), 127.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Onderco, M (2014) ‘Tell Me What You Want’: Analyzing the Visegrád Countries’ Votes in the UN General Assembly. East European Politics and Societies 28(1), 6383.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Oneal, JR and Russet, BM (1997) The Classical Liberals Were Right: Democracy, Interdependence, and Conflict, 1950–1985. International Studies Quarterly 41(2), 267293.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Oneal, JR and Russett, B (1999) Is the Liberal Peace Just an Artifact of Cold War Interests? Assessing Recent Critiques. International Interactions 25(3), 213241.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Özşahin, MC and Tekin, S (2020) Israel's Latin America Policy: A Reappraisal. Israel Journal of Foreign Affairs 14(2), 241257.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Page, BI and Bouton, MM (2008) The Foreign Policy Disconnect: What Americans Want From our Leaders but Don't Get. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
Peffley, M and Hurwitz, J (1993) Models of Attitude Constraint in Foreign Affairs. Political Behavior 15(1), 6190.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pew Research Center (2014) Religion in Latin America 2014. (Viewed on 6.6.21).Google Scholar
Pew Research Center (2006) Spirit and power—A 10 Countries Survey of Pentecostalism. (Viewed on 13.4.2020).Google Scholar
Pew Research Center (2011) Muslim Population by Country. (Viewed on 6.10.2021).Google Scholar
Polimedio, C (2018) The Rise of the Brazilian Evangelicals. The Atlantic, January 24. (Viewed on 23.3.2020).Google Scholar
Ribuffo, L (1998) Religion and American Foreign Policy: The Story of a Complex Relationship. The National Interest 52, 3651.Google Scholar
Russett, B (1990) Doves, Hawks, and US Public Opinion. Political Science Quarterly 105(4), 515538.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sandal, N and Fox, J (2013) Religion in International Relations Theory: Interactions and Possibilities. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Shain, Y and Bristman, B (2002) Diaspora, Kinship and Loyalty: The Renewal of Jewish National Security. International Affairs 78(1), 6996.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Smith, T (2000) Foreign Attachments: The Power of Ethnic Groups in the Making of American Foreign Policy. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
Smith, DA and Campos, LS (2005) Christianity and Television in Guatemala and Brazil: The Pentecostal Experience. Studies in World Christianity 11(1), 4964.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Spector, S (2009) Evangelicals and Israel: The Story of American Christian Zionism. New York: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Spector, S (2019) This Year in Jerusalem: Prophecy, Politics, and the US Embassy in Israel. Journal of Church and State 61(4), 551571.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Thacker, SC (1999) The High Politics of IMF Lending. World Politics 52(1), 3875.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Voeten, E (2000) Clashes in the Assembly. International organization 54(2), 185215.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Voeten, E (2004) Resisting the Lonely Superpower: Responses of States in the United Nations to US Dominance. The Journal of Politics 66(3), 729754.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Voeten, E (2012) Data and analyses of voting in the UN General Assembly. Available at SSRN 2111149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wang, T-Y (1999) US Foreign Aid and UN Voting: An Analysis of Important Issues. International Studies Quarterly 43(1), 199210.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Warner, CM and Walker, SG (2011) Thinking About the Role of Religion in Foreign Policy: A Framework for Analysis. Foreign Policy Analysis 7(1), 113135.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wittkopf, ER (1990) Faces of Internationalism: Public Opinion and American Foreign Policy. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.Google Scholar
The World Bank. "GDP by Country". (Viewed on 5.14.2021).Google Scholar
The World Bank. GDP per Captia. (Viewed on 5.14.2021).Google Scholar
World Tourism Organization. Yearbook of Tourism Statistics. (Viewed on 5.14.2021).Google Scholar
Ynetnews (2014) In Pictures: Thousands Rally around the World to Support Israel. Ynet, August 4.,7340,L-4554970,00.html (Viewed on 6.10.21).Google Scholar
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the or variations. ‘’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

“I Will Bless Those Who Bless You”: Evangelicalism and Support for Israel in Latin America
Available formats

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

“I Will Bless Those Who Bless You”: Evangelicalism and Support for Israel in Latin America
Available formats

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

“I Will Bless Those Who Bless You”: Evangelicalism and Support for Israel in Latin America
Available formats

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *