The Jewish people know that when it comes to fighting the Christian missionary onslaught in Israel, education and public awareness are two very important keys to winning the battle. Unfortunately, evangelical messianic Christians are using the same powerful public relations tools available in Israel - in Hebrew - to confuse and catch Jewish souls. Here's a recent rundown of the good, the bad, and the ugly taking place in lecture halls, in print publications, and on television.
Last Monday evening (April 26th), Jewish Israel gave a presentation at the OU Israel Center. "The evangelicals: a match not made in heaven" attracted a concerned audience and provoked quite a bit of interest and questions. Rabbi Sholom Gold, Jewish Israel's Rabbinic Director delivered the opening remarks. Jewish Israel will be posting the Hebrew address which Rabbi Gold presented at last February's Rabbinic Conference in Jerusalem.
Last Wednesday Yediot Aharanot, a leading newspaper in Israel, ran an extensive feature on Christian missionaries. Jewish Israel's Academic Rabbinic Advisor Rabbi Dr. Jeffrey Woolf was interviewed in an adjunct column to the main article. Rabbi Woolf told Jewish Israel that Yediot's reporter "didn't convey the full texture of my position". And he reiterated that, "the most prominent evangelical supporters of Israel are, simultaneously, the most egregious missionizers among Israeli Jews. The embrace of these evangelicals is extremely dangerous and deleterious." Similar views can be heard by former missionary Gavriel Sanders.
Unfortunately that same lengthy Yediot feature also quoted Orthodox -bashing messianic attorney Calev Myers*, and Rabbi Shlomo Riskin - the Chief Rabbi of Efrat who holds rather unorthodox views on the subject of Jesus, covenantal relations, evangelical support and interfaith endeavors.
*[note: Yad l'Achim recently informed Jewish Israel that their lawyer Yoram Sheftel has indeed filed a claim against Calev Myers in Beit Mishpat HaShalom in Tel Aviv ].
Israel's Channel 23 Educational TV recently saw fit to grant a prime time interview to messianic missionary Asher Intrater of Revive Israel Ministries. The program was hosted by Rino Tzror.
"The primary goal of Revive Israel Ministries is to help foster revival in the land
of Israel. Our ministry is focused on the basic methods of 1) personal
evangelism, 2) discipleship training, and 3) congregational planting. We believe
in the simple and direct preaching of the gospel of Yeshua (Jesus) in the
anointing of the Holy Spirit."
A partial transcript of the show can be read here and the show can be viewed here.
Yad l'Achim's Founding Chairman Harav Shalom Dov Lifshitz filed a complaint with the station.
Rav Lipschitz said: "As long as the missionary law in Israel isn't amended, the missionaries and their accomplices, from right and left, will continue to do as they please, with no one to stop them."
Jewish Israel concurs.While authentic Torah Jews use precious energy and resources to protect the integrity of Am Yisrael and preserve their Jewish heritage in Eretz Yisrael, evangelical Christians masquerding as Jews are chipping away at the very foundations of Judaism and calling for a Christian revival in Israel. As long as a Christian-conceived, American brand of freedom of religious expression reigns in Israel - and continues to dominate print, electronic and cyber media - attempts at Jewish education will not be sufficient to stem the tragic tide. Effective counter-missionary legislation must be urgently enacted in the Jewish state