Blessing Israel Believers
"For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem. It hath pleased them verily; and their debtors they are. For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister unto them in carnal things." Romans 15:26,27
How This Ministry Got Started
In the Fall of 2004, I attended the Feast of Tabernacles celebrations in Israel . My trip was not a tour, but a freelance trip with a pastor friend of mine. We rented a vehicle and stayed with Israelis who are believers in the Lord Jesus. The trip was wonderful as we travelled exactly where we wanted to go and stayed as long as we wanted.
On a planned tour to Israel , it is very difficult to meet Israeli believers. The tour schedule is very structured with very little spare time. Even if a tourist wanted to meet with Israeli believers, it would be nearly impossible without foreknowledge of who they were and where they could be located.
My pastor friend had lots of contacts in Israel . I met with numerous believers and had wonderful fellowship with them. I also met an American pastor, Dave, who now lives in Israel and through him I also met Israeli believers. I was somewhat surprised to meet so many Jewish believers in Israel . Before this trip, I never really thought of Israeli believers, and I had no way of locating any, even if I wanted to. The thought of Israeli believers never crossed my mind.
As I met with the believers, a definite pattern developed. They all suffered some manner of persecution or hardship, and many were financially suffering. Some had lost jobs or apartments because of their faith, and some were fighting deportation from Israel. Although many were suffering, another pattern emerged. They all loved Israel and the Israelis. I did not detect any bitterness or animosity toward those that were causing the hardship. There was a gentleness and meekness that was easily felt from the believers. They were full of faith and love in the face of the hardship. I instantly bonded with them, and they greatly enriched my faith. I made several friends, and the friendship continues to today.
While on this trip, I spent several days with Pastor Dave. He accompanied me to many of the sites in Jerusalem . He arranged for me to meet with a rabbi who is a renowned expert on the temple that is going to be built in Jerusalem . I wrote a book titled Only Jesus of Nazareth Can Sit on The Throne of David, which deals directly with the temples that are to be built including the one built by the Messiah.
My view of the Messiah's temple differed greatly from this rabbi and Pastor Dave wanted me to challenge and perhaps debate the rabbi. I did meet with the rabbi, but there was not time to challenge him. Pastor Dave knew this rabbi, and he told me the rabbi was vehemently against the gospel of the Lord Jesus, and he did all he could to thwart the gospel. Pastor Dave also said that American Christians had raised huge sums of money to help this rabbi get the material ready for the building of the temple. The rabbi had numerous contacts in America and was well liked. This was very strange to me that a rabbi who was so against the gospel should have such friendship with those that preach the gospel.
A few days after meeting with the rabbi, I was in northern Israel at the Sea of Galilee . An Israeli believer had taken us on a tour of the north, and all three of us were now in a Christian bookstore called the Galilee Experience. While I was in this store, I struck up a conversation with a group of women from the United States . These women were on a tour, and I asked them what the highlight of their tour was? All of them agreed the meeting they had with a rabbi in Jerusalem and what they learned from him. This was the same rabbi, who I had met a few days before and despises the gospel! They would have liked to stay with him for days and have him teach the Bible. They also indicated they donated substantial amounts of money to him!
Upon hearing this, I was shocked along with my friends. The highlight of their tour was meeting with a rabbi who detests the gospel of the Lord Jesus! I am sure these women had no idea the rabbi was against the gospel, but the idea they were so enamored with him was to me, sickening. At this time, I was with an Israeli believer, and I knew how he was suffering. It just did not seem right that American Christian tourists should heavily donate to this rabbi while their fellow believers in Israel were living under such financial hardship. In fact, one of their Christian brothers was standing right next to them.
All three of us were dumbfounded and talked this over. I felt that most Christians were like me and never thought about the Israeli believers and would have no idea how to contact one if they wanted to. The Israeli believers were under the radar and out of sight. They were suffering right under the noses of Christian tourists. We felt there had to be a way to alert the church to the believers' plight and help them financially.
Finally, after mulling this over for a few years this ministry was born. This ministry is connected with a network of believers in Israel and is able to get funds directly to them. Now there is a way to bless those Israeli believers who live and preach the gospel of the Lord Jesus in Israel! I also recommend that the Christians continue to bless Israel in every other way possible, and also include in their support the believers.
There is one other thing I would like to share. I was meeting with an Israeli believer who was accompanied by a Palestinian believer. The Israeli was mentoring the Palestinian in the word of God! I had a lengthy conversation with the Palestinian. He loved the Lord Jesus and the Jewish people. It was dangerous for him to meet with Israeli believers as the Palestinian Muslims would kill him. His life was in danger, and he never knew when he would be killed.
We prayed over him and he left. What an example of the power of the gospel of the Lord Jesus: Israeli and Palestinian believers together in love. The Palestinian was fearless for God and was not ashamed of his Israeli brother and sisters.
Click here to visit the Blessing Israeli Believers website.