I've just friended Nitsan Darshan-Leitner - of Shurat HaDin - on Facebook. I'm delighted because I have immense respect for her work.
But I was shocked to immediately find two Christian postings on her 'wall'. One was overt, promoting pictures of Yoshkie, but the other was, in my opinion, far more dangerous. It was from Thurston McCutchen and it promoted his shabbatshalomlovedone.blogspot.com.
He wrote: "Shalom Nitsana- thanks ! I email a weekly Torah Bible Study called "Shabbat Shalom Loved One!" Interested- email tbmccut@yahoo.com and I'll include U. www.shabbatshalomlovedone.blog​spot.com for past studies. www.seedtime2harvest.com for "About us" info. Blessings to you Nitsana and all your loved ones. Thurston"
I checked out the seedtime2harvest website and found a big picture of a man in a tallit blowing a huge shofar. And then I returned to Nitsana's wall to alert people to the fact that it was not a Jewish but a Christian website and to post links to Aish, Ohr Somayach, Jews for Judaism and BeyondBT.
For someone so concerned about teaching the Hebraic roots of the Christian faith, McCutchen's response to my posts claiming that he didn't know that Nitsana was Jewish and had no intention of proselytising anyone strikes me as disingenuous.
Do you know anything of this man and his organisation?
Any suggestions on how best to respond to such people on FB?

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I've done some digging. McCutchen is friendly with a guy named Michael Didier, who advocates the 'Ephraim movement' from Seattle. I plead naivete here - I'd never heard of this bunch. But they seem to have some prominent people in Jerusalem named Avi and Dina. Their names appear on the bottom of a rambling, nonsensicle essay called The Detoxification of Ephraim which Didier posts on his We Are Israel blog. Avi and Dina's contact details are listed as:

www.m7000.com
Toll-Free from the USA: (800) 880-2656
International: +972 (2) 561-1556 (Only Between 10am – 10pm, Days 1-5)
Skype: m-7000

 

To give you a taste of what this lot are about, here's what appears to be a list of core beliefs:

 

Ephraim learns from both Jews and neighboring Gentiles that:

-Paul was a false prophet and a liar

-The Sabbath is counted from the new moon

-A day begins in the morning, not in the evening

-Observing the Law of Moses is purely optional; you do what you want, on your terms

-You can eat whatever you want so long as you bless it before “the Lord”

-Gentiles and Jews in the body of Mashiach don’t have the same obligations and rules to obey

-Jews rule; Gentiles obey

-Gentiles need to convert to Judaism to become bonafide members of the body of Israel

-The rabbis need to be obeyed and dissenters are just doing what is right in their own eyes

-You must never say the Divine Name. Always use “HaShem”

-Pronouncing the Name with the wrong sounds is idolatry

-The New Testament is irrelevant. Only the Torah of Moses is valid

-There could never have been a physical resurrection

-Searching the scriptures to understand the exact identity of Jesus or Yeshua will send you to hell

-Discussing biblical pros and cons of the Virgin Birth will send you to hell

-Questioning the Mother Church Trinity doctrine will send you to hell

 

Stefan, thanks for this information and for your concern.  To learn more about the Ephramite/Hebraic Roots movement and the inroads they have made in Israel, please refer to our recent three part series on attempts at Christian aliyah (links below).  BTW interesting that the Ephramite movement seems to have quite a base in the American Northwest, in States like Oregon and Washington.

part 1: Christian sect seeks residency and settlement in Samaria

part 2: Israeli MKs sanction missionary ties and Christian settlement in Israel

part 3: Hebraic Roots and Rabbis Gone Wild

 

With regards to the best way to respond to such people, Jewish Israel is contacting a number of counter-missionary professionals for their suggestions.  Stay tuned.

 

As a Noahide, I haven't been targeted but I was forced to "unfriend" an old hometown acquaintance, after she began posting comments like, "I will pray to JC for your soul, etc..."

This past week, I changed my privacy settings on Facebook due to an unsettling post I on my Wall. After posting a photo on my Facebook page from a recent gathering of Jews and prominent rabbis from Israel, a Christian woman posted the following statement under my photo, "This photo is the most disturbing thing I've seen on Facebook yet."

Wow. I suddenly got a small taste of what my Jewish brothers and sisters have dealt with for centuries.

 

 

@JewishIsrael   Would you know anything about A Synagogue Without Walls   www.rootsoffaith.net ??

I used to get into with people in different groups and on pages back in the day; I used to lose lots of sleep being - what I felt - the only person responding. Of course, I wasn't the only one, although the numbers of people responding were few enough that it sure felt like it.

 That seems to me like the only answer, though - to have educated Jews responding to Ephraimites, Karaites, messianics, etc in those forums/on those pages. We had gotten together in a hidden group (long gone) on Facebook, allowing us to discuss there what was possible to do, and how best to do it. It allowed us to track what was happening, and in which groups.

 Unforunately, there will always be more of them then there are of us - however, our little group, with some effort, was moderately effective (all of us had been getting thank-you emails from forum readers and participants).

 

You may want to advise people as to what's happening on their pages; most people, when informed, either block certain posters or  adjust their privacy settings.

A Jew putting him/herself “out there” on Facebook is tantamount to signing-up as goalie for a dart team…what do you expect?

Evangelical xians and messy-antics slobber all over themselves for the chance to “set Jews straight”. They’re sick!

My advice is take the target off your chest! Flush Facebook and any other “social networking” swamp you’ve managed to stumble into.

Thanks for this - I'll read up on them. I tried that phone number in Jerusalem, by the way, and Avi and Dina answered. I didn't chat but they seemed to have American accents. Also, FYI, I emailed Jews for Judaism with all the information I shared here.

Jewish Israel said:

Stefan, thanks for this information and for your concern.  To learn more about the Ephramite/Hebraic Roots movement and the inroads they have made in Israel, please refer to our recent three part series on attempts at Christian aliyah (links below).  BTW interesting that the Ephramite movement seems to have quite a base in the American Northwest, in States like Oregon and Washington.

part 1: Christian sect seeks residency and settlement in Samaria

part 2: Israeli MKs sanction missionary ties and Christian settlement in Israel

part 3: Hebraic Roots and Rabbis Gone Wild

 

With regards to the best way to respond to such people, Jewish Israel is contacting a number of counter-missionary professionals for their suggestions.  Stay tuned.

 

Nice analogy! But the nature of my job means that I'm on the Internet all day and social networking is a core activity. So there's no escaping it. I'm just determined to make the best of it rather than retreat from it.

Mordechai Yaakov Allen said:

A Jew putting him/herself “out there” on Facebook is tantamount to signing-up as goalie for a dart team…what do you expect?

Evangelical xians and messy-antics slobber all over themselves for the chance to “set Jews straight”. They’re sick!

My advice is take the target off your chest! Flush Facebook and any other “social networking” swamp you’ve managed to stumble into.

Mordechai, while I agree, there still are a vast number of Jews that have accounts (as I did, for quite some time!) and us leaving doesn't change that those other Jews are there. 

Mordechai Yaakov Allen said:

A Jew putting him/herself “out there” on Facebook is tantamount to signing-up as goalie for a dart team…what do you expect?

Evangelical xians and messy-antics slobber all over themselves for the chance to “set Jews straight”. They’re sick!

My advice is take the target off your chest! Flush Facebook and any other “social networking” swamp you’ve managed to stumble into.

Stefan, it wasn’t merely a “nice analogy”…count the holes in your chest…your losing blood.1

While I am aware of several occupations that require a work day spent on the computer (such as mine, i.e. graphics, writing and illustration), and while I understand that if you were [something like] an HR recruiter or an undercover internet agent you would need to do so, I do have a little trouble imagining stam social networking being a core component of any job.

And…as Moshe V. also implies in his comment…”retreating” isn’t the issue. The issue is Mishlei 17:14 and 26:4-5.

If, after reconsideration of the real issues at stake, you still feel the need to continue on these sites, then I strongly suggest you follow the wise example Jim Long presented in his reply, i.e. “unfriend” the missionary (whatever that means, it seems to follow the halacha). Furthermore, if your concern is for those Jews who are being harassed by missionaries on the social networking sites, model this wisdom before them and advise them to do the same.

Look, I spent thirty years of my adult life missionizing individuals at every opportunity who were willing to debate/argue the issue of salvation, and never was I deterred by “faithless legal issues”. If I didn’t succeed in turning their eyes and hearts to jc, then I succeeded in frustrating them into 1making shaky and embarrassing theological statements and assertions, which, to any audience, weakened and invalidated their position.

Understand this clearly: xians…by any name Ephramite, messianic Jew, etc….have no firm/Biblical rationale on which to base logical apologetics, and are therefore impossible to pin down.  Their air-headed, “faith-based”, chameleon theology changes to suit the challenge. You, unfortunately, do not have that option…you are a Jew. Give your time to Jews.

As their chief Ephramite, messy-antic, Mickey Mouse xian teacher aptly and ironically put it, “let the dead [mice] bury the dead [mice]”.     


Stefan said:

Nice analogy! But the nature of my job means that I'm on the Internet all day and social networking is a core activity. So there's no escaping it. I'm just determined to make the best of it rather than retreat from it.

Mordechai Yaakov Allen said:

A Jew putting him/herself “out there” on Facebook is tantamount to signing-up as goalie for a dart team…what do you expect?

Evangelical xians and messy-antics slobber all over themselves for the chance to “set Jews straight”. They’re sick!

My advice is take the target off your chest! Flush Facebook and any other “social networking” swamp you’ve managed to stumble into.

(Moshe, see reply to Stefan.)

Moshe Verschleisser said:
Mordechai, while I agree, there still are a vast number of Jews that have accounts (as I did, for quite some time!) and us leaving doesn't change that those other Jews are there. 

Mordechai Yaakov Allen said:

A Jew putting him/herself “out there” on Facebook is tantamount to signing-up as goalie for a dart team…what do you expect?

Evangelical xians and messy-antics slobber all over themselves for the chance to “set Jews straight”. They’re sick!

My advice is take the target off your chest! Flush Facebook and any other “social networking” swamp you’ve managed to stumble into.

It may be unusual to reply to one’s own comment, but I feel the need, at this point, to make a clarification: my tendency to be a bit pugnacious and graphic is founded on the content of Devarim 7:2 (the basis for Mitzvah #342 "Not to show favor to idolaters").

In the case of xians and messianic, especially, such “favor” (such as allowing them a hearing or, worse, inviting their opinion) is taken as license to spew their insidious nonsense before the susceptible of our people. This, in turn, violates Mitzvah #312 “Not to lead the children of Israel astray to idolatry” (Shemos 23:13)   

Moshe Verschleisser, being from Brooklyn, is no doubt aware of a recent incident involving a susceptible child of our people. I’m speaking of the brutal murder of little Leiby Kletzky of Boro Park this past week. One week before that, here in Passaic, NJ, a close personal friend, Yaakov Preuss, was killed by a hit-and-run driver. The police have also classified this as a homicide. Two Jewish neshamos in two weeks taken out of this world by self-serving cowards.

What I have come to appreciate about this special people of whom I became a part only two years ago is that we are a family…not figuratively, but literally. Another thing I have come to appreciate is the truth that the neshamah of a Jew is of equal if not greater value than the guf. As sad and angry as I find myself at such seemingly tragic and wanton deaths as the two I mentioned, I find that I experience the same responses when hearing reports of Jews being “won” to the idolatry of xianity.

So, please consider my comments from this perspective, and I will attempt to curb my pugnacity.



Mordechai Yaakov Allen said:

Stefan, it wasn’t merely a “nice analogy”…count the holes in your chest…your losing blood.1

While I am aware of several occupations that require a work day spent on the computer (such as mine, i.e. graphics, writing and illustration), and while I understand that if you were [something like] an HR recruiter or an undercover internet agent you would need to do so, I do have a little trouble imagining stam social networking being a core component of any job.

And…as Moshe V. also implies in his comment…”retreating” isn’t the issue. The issue is Mishlei 17:14 and 26:4-5.

If, after reconsideration of the real issues at stake, you still feel the need to continue on these sites, then I strongly suggest you follow the wise example Jim Long presented in his reply, i.e. “unfriend” the missionary (whatever that means, it seems to follow the halacha). Furthermore, if your concern is for those Jews who are being harassed by missionaries on the social networking sites, model this wisdom before them and advise them to do the same.

Look, I spent thirty years of my adult life missionizing individuals at every opportunity who were willing to debate/argue the issue of salvation, and never was I deterred by “faithless legal issues”. If I didn’t succeed in turning their eyes and hearts to jc, then I succeeded in frustrating them into 1making shaky and embarrassing theological statements and assertions, which, to any audience, weakened and invalidated their position.

Understand this clearly: xians…by any name Ephramite, messianic Jew, etc….have no firm/Biblical rationale on which to base logical apologetics, and are therefore impossible to pin down.  Their air-headed, “faith-based”, chameleon theology changes to suit the challenge. You, unfortunately, do not have that option…you are a Jew. Give your time to Jews.

As their chief Ephramite, messy-antic, Mickey Mouse xian teacher aptly and ironically put it, “let the dead [mice] bury the dead [mice]”.     


Stefan said:

Nice analogy! But the nature of my job means that I'm on the Internet all day and social networking is a core activity. So there's no escaping it. I'm just determined to make the best of it rather than retreat from it.

Mordechai Yaakov Allen said:

A Jew putting him/herself “out there” on Facebook is tantamount to signing-up as goalie for a dart team…what do you expect?

Evangelical xians and messy-antics slobber all over themselves for the chance to “set Jews straight”. They’re sick!

My advice is take the target off your chest! Flush Facebook and any other “social networking” swamp you’ve managed to stumble into.

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