An Interview with Pastor Dan Gayman


Senior Editor
"White Christianity" (An interview with Pastor Dan Gayman)

Dan Gayman is one of the leading figures in what is variously called the Anglo-Israelite, Christian Identity, or Christian Israelite movement. At the time he was interviewed for this volume, he was pastor of the Church of Israel, a fundamentalist-oriented evangelical group based in Schell City, Missouri. Gayman has developed a reputation among scholars and other knowledgeable observers of white separatist Christian sects for his theological sophistication and his ability to explain the often arcane doctrines of Anglo-Israelitism in a manner comprehensible to outsiders. Originally a high school principal and a member of a schismatic Mormon group, Gayman eventually abandoned the teachings of The Book of Mormon to become a full-time advocate for a more fundamentalist style of evangelical Christianity. As he explains in the following interview, his evangelical theology differs from liberal Protestantism in its fundamentalist assertion of Biblical inerrancy, but it differs from most contemporary fundamentalism in the theological importance it places upon ethnicity and in its identification of the ten lost tribes of Israel with the Anglo-Saxons and certain other white European ethnic groups. God, he believes, has singled out the modern Anglo-Saxons and kindred races as a Chosen People who have a special mission to live a life in greater harmony with Biblical teaching. The Anglo-Saxons and other white European ethnic groups, he believes, have displayed historically a superiority over other races in science, technology, philanthropy, and economic organization, but this superiority, he contends, is not the product of their natural endowments, but the result of their greater adherence to Biblical morality and the special graciousness by virtue of which God allows them to meet the demands of Biblical faith. In this interview and elsewhere, Gayman goes out of his way to distance himself from those Christian Identity groups who espouse violence as a means of ushering in the Divine Kingdom (this may be one reason he disdains the Christian Identity label), and while asserting the special chosenness of the Anglo-Saxon people and other white ethnic groups, he says his group harbors no enmity or ill-will toward members of any nonwhite or non-European groups. Gayman believes strongly, however, that different racial and ethnic groups should maintain separate worship services and should not socialize with each other or intermarry. He thus rejects the human-universalist interpretation of the Gospel and Pauline message, which almost all other evangelical churches espouse. Although he is aware that most evangelical theologians consider his beliefs about Israel's lost ten tribes to be fanciful, if not bizarre, Gayman insists that his reading of scriptural promises and prophesies is textually grounded and sound.


The Church of Israel