May 22, 2009

Persecution of Israel

By Nathan Jones

Though I am a firm supporter and believe that the modern state of Israel is the prophetic fulfillment of Ezekiel 37, I am not blind to the fact that Israel persecutes its Messianic Jewish believers.

Some 15,000 Jewish believers in Christ reside in the nation of Israel. They believe that Yeshua (Jesus) is the Messiah the Jews are still waiting for. But, that belief flies in the face of the fundamental Orthodox Jews who firmly believe as the Gospel-time Pharisees did, that Jesus wasn't kingly enough for them to be the Messiah. As an expression of their disbelief, the Orthodox Jews harass and even attempt to kill believers in Christ in Israel. Israel is not a safe place for Christians.

Maoz Israel Ministries, is "a Messianic Jewish ministry in Israel... a catalyst and vehicle for evangelism, training, translating, publishing, economic and disaster relief, and established and underwrites a Hebrew indigenous congregation in Tel Aviv." Their May 13-19, 2009, Dateline Israel report tells of an unexpected support for the Messianic Jews. "After last year's attack on the Ortiz family [bomb], the Israeli press came out with several stories about the Messianic community — some very negative, but some — surprisingly positive." Maoz has packaged these press stories in the short video below.

Ezekiel 38-39 prophesies that the Gog-Magog victory God gives Israel against a massive Muslim invasion will make the Jews "know that I am the LORD" (Ezek. 38:23). Most Jews will then join the Orthodox Jews in their belief in God.

I just hope that many of those Orthodox Jews who currently persecute the Messianic Jews because of the Rapture will soon after have the scales fall off their eyes and realize that Yeshua (Jesus) is truly the Messiah. I hope they'll be part of the 144,000 Jewish evangelists who will share the Gospel during the upcoming 7-year Tribulation (Rev. 7, 14). I hope at the latest they'll be with those who weep like the rest of Jerusalem upon Jesus' Second Coming at the end of the Tribulation as they realize Jesus is the Messiah they've been waiting for, yet have rejected for so long (Zech. 12). If not, all their religious zeal will amount to nothing if they die without accepting God's Son and His salvation.

The very Messianic Jews the Orthodox Jews now persecute hold the final clue to what they are seeking — eternal life.