Be Very Alert! No 211

Be Very Alert!- By Val Hollard (NZ)

On Watch at the Door.                                                No 211, February 16, 2016

CHRISTIAN BETRAYAL OF JEWS IN THESE LAST DAYS

It is heart-breaking to observe the different ways that so-called Christians are turning against the Jews and God’s plans for them. Denying the Jewishness of Jesus is bad enough, but there is also the denial of the rights of Jews to hear the Gospel message. The Great Commission of Jesus Christ mandates that His followers are to bring the gospel message to all people and this includes Jews. (Matt 28) In Acts 1:8 Jesus gives His final words to the apostles. When the Holy Spirit comes on them they are to be His witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.

There are a number of passages that teach that salvation for both Jew and Gentile is only through the acceptance of Jesus Christ as personal Saviour and Messiah.

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.” (Rom 1:16)

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (Jn 14:6)

“She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because He will save His people from their sins.” (Matt 1:21)

There are a variety of reasons why Gentile Christians do not think it necessary to give Jewish people the Gospel message.

At the same time as calling on the church to work with Jews to fight anti-Semitism, the Vatican has recently announced that Jewish people do not need Jesus and that the Catholic Church should not try to convert Jews as they are saved by a special relationship with God. Also, in a new video the pope clearly expresses his belief that all of the major religions are different paths to the same God.

Jews for Jesus, which is the largest Jewish mission agency in the world, has branches in 13 countries and 25 cities. Executive director David Brickner says, “How can the Vatican ignore the fact that the Great Commission of Jesus Christ mandates that His followers are to bring the gospel to all people? Are they merely pandering to some leaders in the Jewish community who applaud being off the radar for evangelisation by Catholics? If so, they need to be reminded that they first received that gospel message from the lips of Jews who were for Jesus.”

Up to the time that Jesus fulfilled the requirements for sacrifice for sins on the Cross, the Jewish sacrifices in the Temple were necessary and Jesus Himself attended the various Feasts. The Temple was destroyed by the Roman army in 70AD and the Jews could no longer make Temple sacrifices. By that time, many Jews had accepted their Jewish Messiah as their Lord and Saviour. However, the Jewish religious establishment which did not accept Jesus now had a big problem. It resulted in them transforming Judaism into a prayer and good works religion. Talmudic Judaism is now vastly different from ancient Hebraic Judaism.

In recent years as Jews returned to Israel, the desire by religious Orthodox Jews for a new Temple and a place to offer sacrifices has surfaced and has now reached the stage where most of the preparations have been made for a new Temple on the Temple Mount once they have the go-ahead. But that will not be acceptable to God. Jews need Jesus as much as Gentiles do. Jesus fulfilled the Law of Moses, and now all men are called to turn to Jesus for forgiveness of sins. With His shed blood, Jesus became the perfect sacrifice for us and is now the only way of salvation.

There are many Christians who believe that Jews can get to heaven without Jesus. Televangelist John Hagee believes in what is referred to as “dual covenant” theology. This creed, which runs counter to mainstream evangelism, maintains that the Jewish people have a special relationship to God through the revelation at Sinai and therefore do not need “to go through Christ or the Cross” to get to heaven. John Hagee leads the largest American pro-Israel organisation, Christians United for Israel, which now has millions of supporters and his TV is said to reach 99 million homes. They believe that by sending millions of dollars to Israel they are obeying God’s command to bless the Jews. (Rom 15:27) Hagee’s many followers sincerely believe they are doing the right thing. We are indeed to bless Israel, but not to do this without giving them the gospel of salvation which they so desperately need.

Hagee says, “I believe that every Jewish person who lives in the light of the Torah, which is the word of God, has a relationship with God and will come to redemption.” This is putting Jews under the curse of the Law which cannot be kept. Terrible things have happened to the Jews for centuries because they did not accept their Messiah at His first coming. They have been cursed because only Jesus can break that curse. Israel as a nation is still under the curse.

Stan Goodenough, an Israel-based Christian tour guide, journalist and commentator, has written an article Jews Come Home which has been published in the Prayer for Israel newsletter. On one whole page he points out the numerous ways in which anti-Semitism is rising. On the next page he makes an urgent appeal to Jews to return to Israel. He begins: “Jews come home! Come home, people of Israel! You must come home.” He says they are not safe where they are now. He promises that God will bless them back in Israel and that they will prosper and be safe. There is not a single mention of the fact that back in Israel they will experience another Holocaust, the Time of Jacob’s Trouble, and that they desperately need to hear the Gospel message and know their Jewish Messiah as their Lord and Saviour as that is the only way they will find peace. Prayer for Israel should be admonishing its readers to pray for the salvation of Jews wherever they are and support evangelism to them. If and when God wants them back in Israel, He will bring them back. It is unfortunate that there are a number of Christian organisations, especially ones bringing Jews back to Israel, who will not give the Gospel to Jews. These organisations take selective prophetic verses in the Bible and turn them into commands.

Some say that we shouldn’t tell Jews about the coming Holocaust when two thirds of Jews will be killed as that will put them off wanting to return to Israel and believe in their Messiah. (Zech 13:8) Thousands of Muslims are turning to Christ in Muslim countries where they know full well that they are likely to be persecuted or murdered as infidels. When we give Jews the Gospel message we should trust the Holy Spirit to work in these people too and not be constrained by our own fears and thoughts which run counter to the Bible. Knowing their Jewish Messiah will bring great peace to Jews in times of trouble. And Gentiles in the West should understand clearly that they are not going to escape persecution either.

Some organisations like International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ) have an agreement with the Israeli government and rabbis that they won’t proselytise. This makes their organisation acceptable to the Israeli government and to religious rabbis. People who follow them have good motives but they are not biblical. These organisations present a social gospel and raise millions of dollars to improve the lives of Jews in Israel, but spend not a cent on evangelism. They say that if they witness to Jews the government and Orthodox Jews won’t like them and will get them sent out of Israel. In other words, they seek to please people who are on their way to hell, rather than do the things that Jesus has instructed us to do. The messianic believers in Israel have nothing to do with these people and wish they would leave the country and stop hurting the true body of believers in Israel. A love of Jews without a desire to share the gospel with them is not the love of Jesus.

During the Nazi Holocaust, many Christians helped put Jews on trains for “resettlement” which meant concentration camps and death for millions. They did this without giving the Jews the Gospel which would have given them the peace of Jesus in the painful times ahead. Many Christians today are condemning Jews, the apple of God’s eye, to an even worse Holocaust without Jesus because they are “resettling” them in Israel without sharing the Gospel with them. This must surely be a work of the devil who does not want Jews saved.

While individual Jews must come to Christ for salvation, God is still not finished with Israel as a nation. The Bible tells us that when Israel is driven to the wall, they will finally recognize Jesus as their Messiah.

There is encouraging news. David Lazarus of Israel Today reports that more than 25 prominent rabbis from Israel and abroad now recognise Jesus as one of their sages who strengthened the Torah and “brought a double goodness to the world.” He says we are now witnessing the undoing of 2,000 years of Jewish rejection and animosity towards Jesus, a miracle by any estimation.

 

IN BRIEF

A group called City for All Women Initiative is planning an “Ottawa Hijab Day” on February 25. The group states that it is aiming for “better awareness”, “greater understanding,” and a “peaceful world.” The Hijab Day will be a day, “When non-Muslim women will wear a hijab (Muslim headscarf) for all or part of the day to be in solidarity with Muslim women.  We walk with our sisters.” Note that many Muslim and non-Muslim women suffer horrifying persecution and murder for the crime of not wearing a hijab. In one instance in 2007, 40 women in Iraq were murdered for not wearing the hijab.

 

In the US, a student in a Maryland high school has been punished for refusing to recite the Islamic profession of faith. In one part of the worksheet it says that Islam is a peaceful religion. She was given failing grades for a series of assignments that violated her Christian beliefs then her father was threatened with arrest for complaining. Marine Corps veteran John Kevin Wood and his wife, Melissa, refused to allow their teenage daughter to be subjected to Islamic indoctrination and propaganda in her high school world history class. The Woods and their daughter chose to remain faithful to God even though failing grades would harm her future admission to college and her opportunities to obtain college scholarships.

 

Under the guise of battling “extremism” and “radicalisation,” authorities in the UK have announced plans to crack down on home-schooling and even on church-run Sunday school programs for children. The public is being given the impression that it is to stop extremist groups in Islam from “radicalising” children, but in practice biblical Christian teaching is being included.

 

Facebook has started a war on freedom of speech. Recently Facebook was forced to back down when caught permitting anti-Israel postings, but censoring equivalent anti-Palestinian postings. Facebook wants to remove speech that they consider is racist and this includes posting anything against the mass immigration of people into Europe who are likely to change the whole fabric of society.

 

The sin of necromancy continues to be alive and well in the Catholic Church. Pope Francis has ordered the corpse of Padre Pio to be displayed in St Peter’s Basilica during the Church’s current Holy Year. Padre Pio was a Catholic monk who died in 1968 and is prayed to by millions of Catholics. Many Catholics claim he was a fake. He is said to have the bleeding wounds of Jesus on his hands and feet. In 2008, his dead body was dug up and made into a shrine inside a glass coffin and preserved in a large, temperature-controlled glass reliquary so the faithful can view it. The devil will do anything to get people’s eyes off of Jesus. Praying to the dead is absolutely forbidden in the Bible. (Deut 18:10-11)

“Come out of her my people, so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues.” (Rev 18:4)

EXTRA ITEMS:

The Final Words of Jesus. By Jacob Prasch (ICEJ, etc)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pPlcia_QAc

A recent conference on the Emerging Church
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjKanOWE4JIQCPTpDLBvlIA/videos

 

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