When Nebuchadnezzar, the Babylonian king, destroyed Solomon’s Temple in 586 BC and took Jerusalem, that was pretty much it for Jewish culture, religion, and its relationship to Greek civilization and democracy. In essence the Twelve Tribes of Israel ceased to exist, despite much fiction and historic obfuscation to the contrary, ever since.
After the destruction of the second temple by 70 CE, the defeated people of the Judaic tribes became the slaves of Babylon. The remnants of those tribes developed a new and different culture, called the ‘Pharisee’, meaning separated or ‘set apart’, from the ancient Greek. Thus, the Pharisees interpreted and practiced the tenets of Jewish law as tradition, but were not related to the Tribes of Israel. And the Pharisees are the people to whom some Jews of today are related.
Since the first and second temples of Jerusalem were destroyed by Babylon and the Judaic tribes were dispersed, the Pharisees (Jews of today) hold the construction of a third temple in Jerusalem as being central to their beliefs, as do ‘last days’ Christians in eschatological Christianity.
According to the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible) the third temple will be built in a coming Messianic Age, the belief of Abraham that the Messiah will return, and people will live in peace without evil. Thus, the Pharisees adopted ancient Pagan beliefs relating to the end of the world, leading to some unfathomable, mythical future, symbolized by the construction of a third temple in Jerusalem.
Linked to the Pharisee’s Messianic temple is the concept of Greater Israel being the Tanakh and Old Testament description of the Pharisees (modern Jews) possessing the land from the Nile to the Euphrates. (Today, annexation of the Golan, West Bank and Gaza is of course included in this Pharisee version of Jewish Empire. *)
While the Pharisees adopted such radical Rabbinic culture and beliefs many centuries ago, the phenomena of ‘last days’ Christianity is a relatively modern invention. It has roots in 1830’s England, as taught by John Nelson Darby, Scofield and others. where Last Days Christians believe in a literal interpretation of the Book of Revelation, also known as the Apocalypse of John or « Apocalypse », the last book of the Bible.
In spooky calmness, the religious Right now awaits the Second Coming and Armageddon. They believe that when things get worse, they only get better. That when US cities burn or flood that’s okay, they are not worth saving. That the decay and decline of their Empire only proves that this age is about to end, and their new Messianic age will begin. Most of all, the religious right supports the military, war, and killing… because, well, the Apocalyptic end for us all is then just that much nearer.
Until their Messiah arrives, the religious Right believes that our « satanic humanist state and federal legal systems » should be replaced with pure Biblical Law; that belief is called Dominionism, or Dispensationalism.
The above religious dogma has been around for many years, but the religious right movement really took off from 1973, with the publication of R. J. Rushdoony’s, Institutes of Biblical Law. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Institutes_of_Biblical_Law
This coincided with the establishment of various extreme right wing think tanks, like the AEI and Heritage Foundation, Koch Family Foundation and many others, which have blasted extremist ‘last days’ pablum via the US and western media for many years. This in an attempt to influence not just American public opinion, but global opinion too; and largely successful, resulting in the election of our present western “leaders”.
In the much-vaunted US heartland, the extreme right “charismatic Christian” movement — sometimes labeled Christianists or religious right — wields much political power. Christianist extremists believed that the United States was lost to Obama, but has been regained under Trump. Turfwise, it’s pretty much their country now.
« Dominionism has exerted one hell of an influence for decades through scores of books, publications and classes taught in colleges and universities. Over the past thirty years their doctrine has permeated not only the religious right, but mainstream churches as well, via the charismatic movement. The radical Christian right’s impact on politics and religion in this nation has been massive, with many mainstream churches pushed rightward by its pervasiveness without even knowing it. »
In the United States presidential election of 2004, Evangelical « born again » Christians comprised 40% of the electorate and overwhelmingly supported Bush-Cheney. The religious right will support the War Party so long as their ministers call it the party of life and their worst instincts tell them to do so; and they will vote for whoever can fulfill their apocalyptic views soonest.
Call this the perfect storm for the Pharisees, that is, Zionist Jews of today. Consider this from Joel Greenberg writing in The New York Times:
‘The seed was sown in 1977, when Menachem Begin of Likud brought his party to power for the first time in a stunning election victory over Labor. A decade before, in the 1967 war, Israeli troops had in effect undone the partition accepted in 1948 by overrunning the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Ever since, Mr. Begin had preached undying loyalty to what he called Judea and Samaria (the West Bank) and promoted Jewish settlement there. But he did not annex the West Bank and Gaza to Israel after he took office, reflecting a recognition that absorbing the Palestinians could turn Israel into a bi-national state instead of a Jewish one.‘
And so Reverend Hagee’s version of Christianity connects with Nethanyahu’s fanaticism and their Judea / Samaria version of Zionism all intersect, to complement the unlikely appearance of a seeming anti-Christ figure in the form of Donald Trump.
In 2015 Trump announced to the American Jewish Committee, “You’re not going to support me because I don’t want your money..” https://www.timesofisrael.com/trump-courts-jewish-republicans-with-offensive-stereotypes/ and yet nothing could be further from the truth.** Trump made other untrue and deceptive statements about disdain for foreign intervention and state-building, just as George W Bush lied, during his first campaign.
While deceiving the electorate on his true aims and goals, Trump pandered to the religious right — successfully. But to ascribe to Trump any true resemblance to the anti-Christ only feeds into the religious nonsense Elites themselves use to divide and conquer, and lends some credence to the religious revisionist ideas of the religious fanatics, whether Zionist or « Christian ».
Nonetheless, we are at a very dangerous crossroads where religious fanaticism, slave-owners like Kushner, fantasy, irrationality, and mentally unstable characters all meet to reinforce themselves, in the form of a Despotic West… That is, to reinforce the worst traits of the Pharisees, the Dispensationalists, and those who lust for power.
Perhaps author AMIN SAIKAL has summarized it best, in just a few words:
« Three minority extremist groups – the militant fundamentalist Islamists exemplified at the far edge by Al Qaeda, activist elements among America’s ‘reborn Christians’ and Neo-conservatives, and the most inflexible hard-line Zionists from Israel – have emerged as dangerously destabilizing actors in world politics. Working perversely to reinforce each other’s ideological excesses, they have managed to drown out mainstream voices from all sides. Each has the aim of changing the world according to its own individual vision. »
Steve Brown is the author of « Iraq: the Road to War » (Sourcewatch) editor of « Bush Administration War Crimes in Iraq » (Sourcewatch) « Trump’s Limited Hangout » and « Federal Reserve: Out-sourcing the Monetary System to the Money Trust Oligarchs Since 1913 »; Steve is an antiwar activist and historian of the monetary system http://panicof1907.com and editor of Novus Confidential investigative reports.
* Genesis 15.18: « The Lord made a covenant with Abraham, saying unto thy seed have I given this land from the river of Egypt [the Nile] unto the great river, the River Euphrates. » By this single mythical verse millions have died and been enslaved.
** The support to Trump’s campaign from Miriam Adelson, Rebekah Mercer, and Paul Singer is now legendary.