The 4th Russian Messianic Jewish Leaders Conference
This article was posted September 30, 2016.
The Russian Revival Continues
I recently returned from Poland where I took part in a conference of Russian-speaking Messianic Jewish congregational leaders in the city of Warsaw. It was an incredible time of fellowship even though I must admit that I only understood what was going on for about 25-30% of the conference! I was one of the only invitees who was not Russian- speaking. This was our fourth Russian Messianic leadership conference, and we spent five days training our brothers and sisters how to evangelize, disciple, and lead congregations.
I sometimes explain Messianic congregations as a cross between “Fiddler on the Roof” and a local evangelical church! And this is even truer among the hundreds of growing Russian Messianic congregations across the globe. Most of these congregations began after 1989—the year of Perestroika—and are located in Russia, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa, Canada, Australia and in more than a dozen cities around the United States. We had 150 attendees and less than 10% of these brothers or sisters were even believers before the fall of the Soviet Union. God has done something absolutely wonderful in bringing Jewish people to Himself.
The 150 participants represented multiple thousands of members and attendees. It is true that Messianic congregations are still relatively small, but this is because believing in Jesus, in the Jewish community, is still a very “un-Jewish” thing to do. But this is rapidly changing in many places—including Israel.
This movement is changing the landscape of Jewish evangelism, as even in Israel 60% of the believers are said to speak Russian as their first language. Chosen People Ministries has more than two dozen Russian Messianic Jewish staff evangelists serving all across the globe.
When you think about it, these Russian Jews who are now leading congregations were mostly raised as atheists and Communists, knew little about their Jewish heritage, did not know Hebrew, were completely unfamiliar with the Bible and yet today they are shining as bright lights for Jesus.
I remember as a young believer going to Wednesday night prayer meetings in a Baptist church where we prayed fervently for the fall of the Soviet Union and the advancement of the Gospel among Russian people. I can tell you from firsthand experience that these prayers have been wonderfully answered. Many of the Russian Jews stuck behind the Iron Curtain left during the past 30 years and have moved to Israel, Germany, the United States, Canada and many other countries. It is even more remarkable that so many have come to faith in Jesus as their Messiah. After coming to faith in Jesus, these Russian Jewish believers have rediscovered their Jewish identity as well. Because of this, they have a great desire to see their fellow Russian Jewish people come to faith in Jesus.
I am inspired by their evangelistic passion for their fellow Russian Jews—it is breathtaking!
It was especially meaningful to conduct this conference in Warsaw since Poland, prior to World War II, had the largest population of Jewish people in Europe—more than three million. Today, of course, Poland has less than 10,000 Jewish people and quite a few of them are immigrants to Poland from Israel or other countries. The Nazis massacred the Jews of Poland in their efforts to destroy the Jewish people.
Thank you so much for praying for this conference and for your financial support as well and please continue to pray for this ongoing Russian Messianic revival movement. I believe this is a movement of God and will go down in history as the largest movement of Jewish people coming to Jesus outside of the Jesus Movement during the 1970s and 1980s. Yet we also expect the future outpouring of the Spirit upon the Jewish people just prior to the return of our Lord and Messiah—Yeshua! And who knows—maybe we are at the very start of this movement?
Fueling the Revival
I wish I could tell you that the Russian Jewish Messianic movement was self-supporting. It is not! But, we wish it could be. Our evangelists in Israel, Russia, Ukraine and even in Brooklyn are not able to raise their regular support. So, we help them through the Daniel Fuchs Memorial Fund, which was named after one of our former presidents of Chosen People Ministries and which we use to fund those workers, including our Russian Jewish staff, who are unable to raise their support.
Would you consider a generous gift today to the Daniel Fuchs Memorial Fund? We can provide full monthly support for a missionary in Russia or Ukraine for under $1,000 per month. In Israel, we need a bit more. Some of our Russian and non-Russian staff in the greater New York area are struggling as well because of the expense of living in this city which is home to more Jewish people than any other city on earth!
Would you help me help our dedicated staff so that they can focus on their ministries and not have to be worried about their salaries?
We need about $200,000 this year to meet the demands for the Daniel Fuchs Memorial Fund. Your Mission to the Jewish People continues to grow and there are future staff members in Ukraine and Israel that we cannot take on because we cannot support them. So, even a gift of $50 or $100, or more if the Lord allows, would be incredibly helpful at this very moment!
We would be happy to send you one of our new Messianic Jewish Art Calendars as a thank you for your gift of $100 or more.
Thank you so much for your love and support!
Your brother in the Messiah,
P.S. Just imagine how I felt walking through the Warsaw Ghetto and the old Jewish neighborhoods of Warsaw with more than 100 Russian Messianic Jewish believers! The Nazis tried to destroy us, the Soviets tried to destroy us…but they failed, and today God has created a thriving Messianic Russian Jewish movement. I must admit, I was frequently moved to tears during the conference because what I was witnessing spoke of God’s unfailing love for Israel and assured me that the Apostle Paul’s prayer for the salvation of Israel would one day come to pass. As he wrote,
Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them (the Jewish people) is for their salvation. (Romans 10:1)