They say an oilman has to be a gambler, but can he be a prophet?
Zion Oil & Gas, based in Dallas, is a publicly traded company that believes it is commanded by the Bible to search for oil in Israel, both to help the Holy Land and make money for investors. The 22 employees of Zion Oil in Texas and Israel, and many of its 30,000 investors, believe the company is on a mission from God.
“God creates this. He provides the money and the place where to drill. Now why we haven’t got the oil yet, I don’t know. I have never drilled one oil well I didn’t expect to find oil,” says John Brown, Zion founder & CEO.
He’s a hulking, 73-year-old evangelical Christian who went to Israel, had a religious experience, came back and sold his business in Michigan, then started Zion with no prior experience in the oil industry.
He sits in Zion’s Dallas office, with a picture on the wall of him kissing Jersualem’s Western Wall, part of the ancient Jewish Temple.
“I was an alcoholic that God saved, took me from being in the tool business and sent me to Israel and told me he was gonna do something. Zion Oil & Gas was nothing. I didn’t even think about something like that at that point,” Brown says.