In the mad pre-Rosh Hashanah rush, I neglected to send out a missionary update. So below is the last update on evangelical missionary activity for the year 5768 - and it's a long one.
Let's hope that this New Year brings shorter and sweeter news, as we make progress in our efforts to upset the designs of those who are determined to take the Jewish people away from
With the U'netaneh Tokef prayer being such an integral part of the Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur service, we might as well begin in Germany where more than 800 years ago the martyred Rabbi Amnon of Mainz left us a very painful and eternal lesson on an interfaith friendship gone awry.
The WEA issues the 2008 Berlin
Declaration: a decree to convert European Jewry:
YNET reports that the World Evangelical Alliance ended their conference in Berlin with a statement calling for the mass conversion of Jews (in the spirit of friendship, of course)
The statement issued by the WEA Theological Commission entitled "The Berlin Declaration on the Uniqueness of Christ and Jewish Evangelism in Europe Today" was developed by a
task force at a consultation in Berlin, Germany which took place on August 18-22, 2008.
The ADL was quick to denounce the World Evangelical Alliance for targeting European Jews for conversion. It was not unlike Foxman's statement issued at the end of March which censured the very same WEA for launching a campaign targeting Jews for conversion via full page ads in the New York Times and other major papers.
The WEA is no fringe group. It " is a network of churches in 128 nations that have each formed an evangelical alliance and over 100 international organizations joining together to give a worldwide identity, voice and platform to more than 420 million evangelical Christians."
And it enjoys the endorsement of some heavy hitters among so-called "Christian Zionists". As you may recall CUFI regional director and publisher Stephen Strang was among the endorsers of that WEA statement, as was radio-show host Janet Parshall - who was instrumental in
launching and establishing the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus.
[It should be noted that the "prophetic" Parshall withdrew from the Caucus as she sensed a
time when Israel would soon essentially say, "We'll take your aid, your
support and your tourist dollars, but we won't take your Jesus."]
Damn straight, Janet !
Ironically it was Abe Foxman of the ADL who played a role in preventing Israel from passing badly needed anti-missionary legislation back in 1998. Something about "the
bill's implications on civil liberties and religious freedom in Israel"..
What goes around comes around, Abe.
Messianic Jews Promote Ethiopian Aliya:
The Jerusalem Post is reporting that Messianic Jewish missionaries from the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America (MJAA) are busy convincing 50,000-70,000 Ethiopian Christians from far-flung villages in Ethiopia that they are really Jewish believers in Jesus and entitled to aliyah.
The following are excerpts from the article:
"Operation Tikva is contravening the Israeli government's attempts over
the last year to wind down official aliya operations in Ethiopia, and the
project is being viewed in Jerusalem with alarm."
...."These people are clearly not Jewish and they are working in areas
where none of the people are Jews either; everything they are telling these
people are lies," said Rabbi Menachem Waldman, a member of the Public
Council for Ethiopian Jews, which has successfully persuaded the Israeli
government to continue checking the eligibility for immigration of a further
3,000 Falash Mura (Ethiopian Jews whose ancestors converted to Christianity
more than a century ago) from the same region of Ethiopia...
Aveje Manhanei, who runs an Israeli-based Web community dedicated to
preserving the traditions and culture of Ethiopian Jewry, told the Post, "If
Israel does not put a stop to this activity as soon as possible then there
will eventually be another 75 million Ethiopians demanding to make aliya."
Kidnapping the Kotel:
Missionaries continue their "love affair" with Jewish symbols with the
intent of drawing Jews closer. Well here's one kotel we Jews won't
Every Home for Christ located in Colorado Springs, will be spending $2.3 million on a replica of the Western Wall which will be housed in the Jericho Center for Global Evangelism - a
missionary training center
The replica will fill 2,500 square feet of an 8,000-square-foot, 300-seat auditorium. About 50 tons of stone will be used to construct the mini two-story wall and auditorium. Stones will be cut from an ancient mine outside of Jerusalem. The wall will be free and open to the public 24 hours
a day. The hope is to have Christians and Jews praying together.
1 Million Christians to Claim Inheritance of Eretz Yisrael.
.if Joel Bell gets his way. The Israeli citizen and Christian missionary (how did he make aliyah?)
who sends out Hannukah greetings praising Jesus, has unveiled ambitious building designs in Israel, as well as plans to bring 1,000,000 Christians on aliyah. Joel figures that the time has come for Christians to claim their eternal inheritance to Israel - and he's got Likud
Joel, knows how to put a slick presentation together for his Christian brethren, and WORLDWIDE BIBLICAL ZIONISTS "actively develop opportunities through partnership for your participation here in Israel. Investments, jobs, housing, education, military training, community, and tools you'll need to make Israel your home. "
Joel Bell has his eyes set on Judea and Shomron, and he will be
bringing a large group to Israel in November to seek out opportunities - so
heads up, Jews.
IDF Officers "hook-up"with Southern Baptist Missionaries:
According to a series of letters sent to 11,000 Christian clergy, Southern Baptist Pastor Jim Vineyard "hooked up" with 80 IDF officers at a "War College" in France in late September. Vineyard stayed at the same hotel with "these 80 Hebrews to study primarily, the Normandy Invasion".
One of the sponsors of the program is Colonel J. Tyler Ryberg, USMC (Retired). Ryberg is the Director of the missionary agency and local church ministry of Faith Baptist Church, Belleville, IL , where his mission is to "evangelize and disciple military men and women around the world through Worldwide Military Baptist Missions".
In all fairness, Colonel Ryberg has a wealth of battle experience and appears to have great admiration for Pastor Vineyard and his efforts. But he is first and foremost a missionary with a vision for U.S. military men and women " to be saved, baptized, discipled and serving the Lord Jesus Christ." So one wonders why our IDF officers need this kind of program which appears to have been - to a large extent - coordinated and sponsored by Baptist pastors like Vineyard and Ryberg.
According to one of Vineyard's letters, packages were distributed to the IDF officers. "when we put that package of books and DVDs into their hands. They would ask, "For Me?" Then they would walk away amazed."According to the letter, most of the material was related to the
subject matter at hand (the Normandy Invasion). But you gotta wonder.
The State Department has an Orthodox Jewish Problem:
The International Religious Freedom Report of 2008 was recently released, and the State Department leveled some unwarranted charges against the Jews. Seems we've been persecuting the church here in Israel and denying Christians their right to pretend to be Jews.
The Jerusalem Post reports that the State Depatment "put blame for the "tensions" on "certain Orthodox and ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities."
But except in one case, the report, which noted numerous incidents of discrimination or violence against Christian or Messianic Jewish communities or individuals, failed to prove that the perpetrators were Orthodox or ultra-Orthodox.
The biased and shoddy State Department reporting seemed to rely heavily on the spin given by CBN (the Christian Broadcasting Network) and the ACLJ (The American Center for Law and Justice) - both Pat Robertson productions. As expected they covered items like the Ariel Purim explosion ("bombing"), the Narkiss Church fire ("arson"), and the incineration of missionary materials ("bible burnings"). Of course Pastor/Lawyer Calev Myer's Jerusalem Institute of Justice was one of the messianic sources which the State Department used in their hatchet job.
Pat Boone "sings" at Eckstein's anniversary Bash
Pat Roberston was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award for support of Israel at Yechiel Eckstein's 25th anniversary banquet for the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ).
As already pointed out, Robertson's institutions like CBN and ACLJ are giving Israel a messianic migraine. But it was Pat Boone who MC'd the Eckstein event, and Pat "sang" about his hopes for the Jews onChicago's news station WBBM 780. You can hear that clip here or just read it:
".one of the early leaders of the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, 74-year-old singer Pat Boone, who is Christian but says, with a smile, that he represents the Messianic branch of Judaism.
"The time will come when Jews themselves will say, 'What do you know? The messiah has been here all this time.' So that's what we believe, and we long for. Not that we try to force it on anybody. And we understand why they don't see that yet. Maybe some never will."
The Israeli daily Ma'ariv reported that Eckstein's organization (IFCJ) gave $10,000 in 2007 to an evangelical group in Jerusalem that proselytizes Israeli Jews. " That organization would be Kings of Kings Assemblies in Jerusalem.
"King of Kings Community is called to be a compelling, Messiah-centered, Spirit-empowered, disciple-making community that reveals the true face of Yeshua (Jesus) to Israel and to the nations. "
Yep. That sounds pretty missionary to me.
Is There a Rabbi in the House?
While Rabbi Eckstein may have distributed funds to missionaries, it appears that Rabbi Riskin has accepted missionary related funds.
A CUFI sponsored event at the Harvest Training Center - a missionary organization - raised $12,600 for Rabbi Riskin's Ohr Torah Loving Kindness Fund in Efrat.
The Calvary Tabernacle Harvest Training Center of Cranford New Jersey is affiliated with Dugit Messianic Outreach Center in Tel Aviv ( a very active missionary organization)
ICEJ Crowns Jesus as the Lion King and Ruler of Jerusalem:
Once again the annual ICEJ (International Christian Embassy, Jerusalem) Feast of the Tabernacles pilgrimage will soon descend upon Jerusalem. As you may recall, last year the Chief Rabbinate proscribed Jewish participation in the Feast events, as well the Jerusalem March due to a missionary presence and activity. As I pointed out in a recent report, the rabbinic decision was more than vindicated.
The Lion of Judah is the theme of this year's Feast and this is what Chuck King has this to say about this year's feast:
From the tribe of Judah came King David, and from the House of David the true "Lion King" - Jesus - appeared. Jesus' identity as the triumphal Lion of Judah is revealed in Revelation 5, where He is described as the only one worthy to open Heaven's scroll.
This year's Feast of Tabernacles celebration raises a banner bearing the symbol of the Lion of Judah. By lifting up His tribal ensign, we proclaim in this 60th year anniversary of Israel's national rebirth, that the coming Lion of the Tribe of Judah will soon establish His rightful inheritance and establish His throne to rule over His city and the nations.
The lion of Jesus theme is prominently featured throughout the week long pilgrimage with events proclaiming THE INHERITANCE OF THE TRIBE OF JUDAH, THE ROAR OF THE LION OF JUDAH, THE LION OF JUDAH AS JUDGE, THE TRIUMPHANT LION OF JUDAH, etc.
Some people will simply dismiss this as a Christian event about Christian beliefs. But as Jews living in Eretz Yisrael, we do have the following issues:
a) The event - the largest tourist event of the year in Israel - is fully endorsed by the government of a Jewish state.
b) the Prime Minister as well as Knesset members and "rabbis" and Jewish/Israeli diplomats and dignitaries attend the events of Feast pilgrimage and/or give it their blessing.
c) A Jewish convention center that enjoys a kashrut certificate hosts the pilgrimage
d) there is a heavy messianic and missionary presence at the Feast (it is essentially an evangelical/missionary event)
e) The Jerusalem March will certainly feature large banners of the Lion of Judah - symbolic of their Jesus, and Jewish bystanders and participants will inadvertently be paying homage to and acknowledging the Christian participants and their symbols (this may pose a serious halachic issue)
Honestly I haven't been so disgusted since Jerusalem's emblem of the lion of Judah was morphed into two lions mating to promote a gay pride parade in the streets of Jerusalem .
So if I could be so bold as to momentarily reclaim the Lion King from the Christian Embassy, and borrow a line from Walt Disney..
"Remember who you are"
As we Jews stand before Hashem during these awesome days, we should try and remember just who we are and where we are standing.
And I think we can and should restore the symbol of the lion of Judah to its proper place by politely, but firmly, telling the Christian Embassy where they can put their jesus.
Shana Tova and G'mar Chatima Tova.
Cross-posted from Shiloh Musings