Zohar was raised in an Israeli, Jewish, secular home. Like most Israelis, after completing his Israeli military service, he traveled abroad, where for the first time he met Israel-loving Gentiles, who told him about Yeshua being the Jewish Messiah, and that salvation is only possible through Him.
One day shortly after his return to Israel, he began weeping, realizing the sin in his life, acknowledging that the Lord Yeshua had sacrificed His very life for him. He also found himself weeping in mourning for his very nation that had rejected Him for 2,000 years. He felt an intense burden for his people, longing to see them turn to Yeshua in repentance and faith.
Zohar joined a Hebrew-speaking congregation, where he also met and married his wife, Tehila. They served there together for many years while raising their young children. He worked as an engineer for a telecommunications company in Israel
for ten years until the Lord amazingly guided him to study at a wonderful Bible College in New Zealand. It was during this time in New Zealand, that he realized the great potential for reaching out to the Israelis traveling there, and followed God’s call to full-time ministry.
Zohar and Tehila Gonen reach out, in Hebrew, too many of the thousands of Israelis who travel to New Zealand each year. They also connect interested Israelis to local congregations back in their homeland. In addition, Zohar equips local believers who often come into contact with Israeli tourists with knowledge in Jewish evangelism. He also teaches locally in New Zealand churches about the role of Israel, the Jewish Feasts, the future of Israel, and other Jewish related topics.
The Gonens have four precious children whom they aim to raise to the glory of God, Aviel, Liam, Yakim, and Eliya.