This article was posted June 22, 2018.
Shalom from Jerusalem where we are in the midst of a joyous global celebration in honor of Israel’s 70th anniversary. We are touring the country, enjoying a Bible conference, and having fellowship with 600 believers from fourteen different countries where Chosen People Ministries maintains regular and resident outreach to the Jewish people.
We have all come to celebrate one of the greatest miracles of our modern day—the return of the Jewish people to the land of Israel!
Just prior to the arrival of our many prayer partners and supporters who are now experiencing the Holy Land, we met together with our national leaders from around the globe to strategize, share stories of God’s grace, and pray about the future of our work together for the Lord and for the sake of the Jewish people.
I cannot tell you how exciting it was for me to hear what God is doing! May I quickly summarize?
A Quick Tour of Chosen People Ministries Around the Globe
Our staff in New Zealand have shared the gospel with more than a thousand Israeli travelers over the past six months. Most of them actually stayed at the guest homes we operate in New Zealand where we offer free housing for young Israelis traveling the world after their army service. We have regular barbecues, hummus nights, and Sabbath meals together where the opportunity to speak about the Messiah comes up so naturally and beautifully, and conversations often last late into the night.
Our staff in Finland engage in some local work in Helsinki. They also regularly travel to Lithuania and Latvia to minister to the thousands of poor and elderly Jewish people who survived the Holocaust. Our staff shares the gospel with them and meet many of their material needs as well. We have actually seen leaders of the Jewish community in these countries come to faith in the Messiah Jesus!
Our workers in England, home to 300,000 Jewish people, are focused on the Jewish North End of London where we also planted a Messianic congregation. A few of our workers share the gospel each week on the streets of the ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods of London. They also mobilize young British Christians to serve the Lord by presenting the gospel to their Jewish friends’ in-home meetings and in the marketplace.
We have now planted a Messianic congregation in the Jewish district of Paris(home to 400,000 Jewish people), established fellowships for new Jewish believers in various cities throughout South Africa, and continue to serve two Messianic congregations in Moscow. The Lord has also used us to help establish a network of a dozen or more fellowships, Bible studies, and congregations in Ukraine where we have heard incredible stories of Jewish people coming to faith.
Chosen People Ministries is known as Celebrate Messiah in Australia, and the work is growing by leaps and bounds in both Melbourne and Sydney, home to more than a hundred thousand Jewish people! Congregation Beit HaMashiach (House of Messiah), planted by Lawrence Hirsch and his wife Louise, is having a huge impact in its local Jewish community and over the years many Jewish people have come to faith in Jesus!
God is blessing our ministries in Germany through our partner, Beit Sar Shalom. Vladimir Pikman and his wife Inna have spent more than two decades in Germany building ministries among the 300,000 Jewish Russian-speaking immigrants. The German staff has planted fifteen-plus congregations and fellowships throughout Germany, and literally, hundreds of Jewish people have come to faith through their proclamation of the gospel.
Some countries, like Hong Kong, do not have large Jewish populations (about 2,000), but they encourage prayer, provide support, and send workers to fields like New York City, Israel, and Australia! We actually have six full-time missionaries from Hong Kong and they are dedicated and fruitful workers in the Jewish harvest.
Our Israel staff of about twenty-five workers reports that our ministry among poor and elderly Holocaust survivors is growing, but the population is shrinking and there is a tremendous urgency to our work among these precious people. We had fifty Holocaust survivors join us this week for dinner with our global Chosen People Ministries family, and we heard the testimony of one of the survivors who came to faith through the work of our Israeli staff. What a joy to hear how his life has changed and his wife’s as well!
More than 4,000 Israelis have ordered the Isaiah 53 Explained book in Hebrew through our Facebook ads during the last twelve months. Ninety percent of these are not believers in Jesus—yet! We have had many follow-up discussions with these seekers, the majority of whom are young. We also discovered a few hundred Israeli believers in Jesus and sent the book to a few dozen self-identifying Muslims.
There is more to tell about all the Lord is doing in Israel during this 70th anniversary year! In fact, according to a survey of Israeli believers that appears in our latest book, Israel, the Church, and the Middle East: A Biblical Response to the Current Conflict (published by Kregel Academic Press), the local Hebrew-speaking Israeli Church has grown to nearly 30,000 believers. There has been tremendous growth during the last decade for which we praise our all-powerful God!
I am excited about all the Lord is doing around the globe through our Chosen People Ministries staff!
Your Role in God’s Plan for Israel and the Jewish People
The Spirit of the Lord is moving in Israel and around the world among His chosen people. We rejoice in all He is doing, but we need to ask the question, “What is our role in God’s plan today?” First and foremost, we need to pray. Will you commit to praying with us for the salvation of the Jewish people, for the peace of Jerusalem, and for our staff who are serving around the globe?
We are blessed in the United States that our U.S.- based missionaries are able to raise their own support because of the dedication, sacrifice, and generosity of Christians like you. But, this is not possible for those serving in Israel, Russia, and even in many parts of Europe. These places are home to most of the Jewish people outside of North America.
Would you help me provide support for the very fruitful work in places where raising missionary support is next to impossible?
We have established a Global Jewish Missions Fund to enable us to channel gifts to various countries where there are many Jewish people but fewer churches and Christians!
Our goal this fiscal year for this new fund (our fiscal year starts July 1) is $250,000.
For your gift of $250 or more, I will send you a copy of our new book, Israel, the Church, and the Middle East: A Biblical Response to the Current Conflict, as a token of our heartfelt thanks.
We simply cannot do all we want for these committed gospel proclaimers without your help! We have a great opportunity today as Your Mission to the Jewish People has trained and willing workers who need your prayers and support to continue the great work of reaching the Jewish people for Jesus. Will you pray…will you help?
Remaining Steadfast, Immovable, Always Abounding in the Work of the Lord!
The Apostle Paul writes, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58).
This passage is my life verse and is the conclusion to one of the lengthiest chapters in the New Testament: 1 Corinthians 15. The focus of this chapter is the resurrection. Paul argues that the resurrection of Jesus from the dead assures His followers of their own personal resurrection, whether this comes after physical death or via the rapture.
I believe that we need to evaluate our work and ministries in light of eternity—from God’s perspective and not man’s. I am not implying that we should dismiss the usual goals of life and work expected of us, but we need to go beyond the world’s expectations in light of the brilliant and glorious future the Lord has prepared for all who love Him.
Success is Living in Light of our Future Resurrection
When we daily delight in the love of the Lord and the power of His resurrection, we are able to labor for Him and remain steadfast as faithfulness always leads to fruitfulness! Perhaps not as the world measures, but all we should care about is hearing those words, “well done, good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:23).
Over the years I have come to appreciate the everyday work of ministry. One of our staff members wrote the following and I could not agree more! “It’s very hard spiritually to keep going back to a community that will reject you again and again. Your ‘fruit’ is being faithful to the gospel and proclaiming it even though you know that the message might be rejected. When I read Isaiah 6:4-13, it seems like a good job description of my current work, and I feel very privileged to be called to it.”
Thank you for your faithful service to the Lord and your help in bringing the gospel to the Jewish people around the globe.
And thank you for praying about giving a founding gift for our new Global Jewish Missions Fund. This gives you an opportunity to invest in the Lord’s work among the Jewish people in the hard to reach places and to enable faithful missionaries to the Jewish people to continue their wonderful ministries!
Your brother in the Messiah,
Our goal for this fiscal year (beginning July 1st) for this new fund is $250,000.
P.S. For your gift of $250 or more, I will send you a copy of our new book, Israel, the Church, and the Middle East: A Biblical Response to the Current Conflict, as a token of our heartfelt thanks.
For your gift of $250 or more, we will send you our newest book, Israel, the Church, and the Middle East: A Biblical Response to the Current Conflict. It provides an in-depth biblical, historical, and up-to-date look at the present tensions in the