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Tuesday, 12 November 2013

A Plea To John Hagee: Let My People Know

A Plea To John Hagee: Let My People Know



john-hagee-cufi-blogTo share or not to share the Messiah with Jewish people? Celebrity pastor, John Hagee, is dead against the idea, but others are taking brave risks to bring the good news to the people of Israel. Café Forté, a coffee shop run by believers in Jerusalem, had its kosher license revoked, as the authorities were horrified that they were offering New Testaments to some of their customers.

If you share the wonderful news of Yeshua in Israel, it will not make you popular. But since when did Yeshua say it was all about being popular? Rather, he promised: “You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 10:22). The Bible insists that we should not be surprised by trials and persecutions when we bring the message of the cross. But bring it we must, or we insult the work that Yeshua did upon it. However, there are those, like John Hagee, that would not agree. We would like to challenge his refusal to let the Jewish people hear the truth.


"Whether they listen or whether they fail to listen"
Paul was a man who knew what it meant to suffer for the gospel, doggedly taking the news of the Messiah to the Jewish people whether they listened or not. He said, “I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the gentile”. (Romans 1:16)

We in One For Israel have been concerned by Christians like John Hagee who are teaching that that there is no need to share the gospel with Jewish people. They mistakenly believe that Jewish people do not need the blood of Yeshua to pay for their sins, unlike everyone else. By witholding the good news of the Messiah’s victory over death and punishment, such people are keeping Jewish people from salvation and the forgiveness that was bought for them at a very high price. This is an extremely grave matter for all those who care about Israel, and we would like to encourage you to join us in making sure that every Jewish person gets a good chance to understand the gospel in a way that makes sense to them. It makes no sense to love people and be indifferent about their eternal destiny - we love our Jewish brothers and sisters, and long for them to join us in eternity. To prevent them from hearing the truth that can save them is not only unloving, some would even call it a form of anti-Semitism. It is singling the Jewish people out for less favourable treatment. They have the right to hear the truth too, just as much as the gentiles.
John Hagee and his ministry, Christians United For Israel, will not offer the gospel message even though the Bible teaches that without it, people are perishing. He is not only witholding vital information about Yeshua, but he is also falling into serious error in what he does say about Yeshua.
Israeli responses to the coffee shop debacle
The story about the evangelism that was happening at the Jerusalem coffee shop was reported in several places in the local press, and some of the comments from the Israeli public were very enlightening [1]. There were many angry comments of people indignant that Messianic believers would dare to share their faith, but one man called Moishe wrote this:

“There are Christians, like pastor Hagee, God bless him, who, along with thousands in and out of his congregation, give millions to Israeli organizations with absolutely NO proselytization in mind... I hope as I read these comments I don't see sweeping generalizations about Christians, many of whom, particularly in US, like Christians United for Israel, go out of their way, far more than any Jewish organization anywhere does, to support Israel with all of their heart, soul, and might. A look at their website shows that they have over 1 million members and do so, so much to support Israel. Do they have a Christian scripture page? You bet, but that's because they're Christians. But, they are involved in huge ways in support of Israel with NO proselytization of Jews whatsoever. Oh, that Israel would have such support from Jews in America as from CUFI”.

We commend the good work that is done in Israel, but you can clearly see that this man Moishe loves Pastor Hagee’s ministry precisely because they will not share the gospel message. Sadly, this is also the attitude of many Christians who want to bring only kindness without the truth. But Yeshua is full of loving kindness AND truth (John 1:14), and this is what he has commissioned us to preach to the world. This is why he promised there would be trouble! Silence on the matter is not a loving approach. If we love the Jewish people at all, we have to be braver than that. Just as Ezekiel was told, “Don’t be afraid of them, or fear their sullen, angry looks... go to your people in exile, and whether or not they will listen, tell them: ‘This is what the Lord God says!’” (3:9-11)

Moishe's comment also highlights another important fact: Many Christians are endeavouring to "bless Israel" by giving sacrificially to Hagee's ministry, not realising that he is not blessing Israel with the greatest blessing of all - the truth about their Messiah.

In his controversial book "In Defense of Israel", John Hagee claims that:
- Jesus did not come to earth to be the Messiah.
- Jesus refused by word and deed to be the Messiah.
- A Jew cannot be blamed for not accepting what "was never offered".
We hope you can see the problem here. The Union of Messianic Jewish Congregations along with many prominent leaders have spoken out against John Hagee's teaching, calling it heresy[2] and an increasing number of people are questioning his ideas and approach.

The Bible tells us to watch and pray; to be alert, and to test teaching, so that we do not fall into error. Please take this information seriously, investigate for yourselves, and pass it along to others who may need to know.
Don't you think that the Jewish people need Jesus too?  We as Jewish Israelis ourselves says YES!!


[1] To read the article about Café Forté in the Jewish Press, click here

[2] To read Dr Michael Brown's response; "Is there serious error in the book, "In Defense of Israel?"", click here.To read statements from other prominent leaders, click here



It's never a good idea to try to convert the Rabbi. By: Jewish Press News Briefs


 Letter about Kashrut Revocation for Cafe Porta

Missionaries Try to Convert Jerusalem Kashrut Supervisor – Lose Certification It's never a good idea to try to convert the Rabbi. By: Jewish Press News Briefs Published: October 15th, 2013 Latest update: October 16th, 2013 print tell a friend Letter about Kashrut Revocation for Cafe Porta Letter about Kashrut Revocation for Cafe Porta Photo Credit: HaKol HaYehudi Following an investigation by the anti-missionary organization Yad L’Achim into ‘Cafe Porta’, located in the Clal building in Jerusalem, the organization reported to the Kashrut division of Jerusalem’s Religious Authority that the cafe appears to be a missionary center. Missionary activity is frowned upon in Israel, and illegal in certain circumstances. At first, the Kashrut division had no proof, nor any legal steps they could take against the cafe. But when the Kashrut division sent its own inspectors to check on the report, they were taken by surprise when the owners gave missionary material, including a New Testament, to the Kashrut supervisor, apparently in an attempt to begin the proselytization process on the Rabbi. Needless to say, the Kashrut certification for the cafe was immediately revoked.



IS THERE SERIOUS ERROR IN THE NEW BOOK, IN DEFENSE OF ISRAEL? 


http://pjmiller.wordpress.com/2007/12/11/dr-michael-brown%E2%80%99s-critical-paper-on-%E2%80%9Cin-defense-of-israel%E2%80%9D/  


by Dr. Michael L. Brown

Pastor John Hagee’s new book, In Defense of Israel: The Bible’s Mandate for Supporting the Jewish State (Lake Mary, Florida: Front Line, 2007), was publicized by announcements stating that the book would “shake Christian theology.” The following positions are explicitly laid out in the book:
-The Jewish people, as a whole, did not reject Jesus as Messiah.
-Jesus did not come to earth to be the Messiah.
-Jesus refused by word and deed to be the Messiah.
-The Jews cannot be blamed for not accepting what was never offered.


Statements like this must be evaluated in light of 1 John 2:22: “Who is the liar? It is the man who denies that Jesus is the Christ [i.e., Messiah]. Such a man is the antichrist—he denies the Father and the Son.” As commentator Stephen S. Smalley explained, “The true believer is the one who accepts the Christhood of Jesus, whereas those who deny his messianic identity declare themselves to be on the side of the antichrist” (Word Biblical Commentary).


What could possibly be the motivation for teaching such error? First, In Defense of Israel desires to dispel once and for all the notion that all Jews are Christ-killers, a terrible lie that has fueled anti-Semitism in the Church for more than 1,500 years. Second, the book wants to refute the false teaching of replacement theology, explaining that, “Replacement theologians have said that ‘the covenant with Israel was broken because she would not accept Jesus Christ whom God sent.’” (See p. 132 of In Defense of Israel.) Tragically, in the attempt to fight against these serious errors, a more serious error has now been introduced. Yet some believers – and even leaders! – are buying into this error hook, line, and sinker, and some have begun to teach and preach it as well.

Since the publication of the book, Pastor Hagee issued some clarifying remarks, but the clarifications only complicate the issues and fail to renounce and remove the error.

Here are three fundamental statements that all believers should be able to affirm without hesitation:
1) Jesus came to be the Messiah. This is the fundamental message of the New Testament, which is why we call him “Christ” (meaning, “Messiah”). And it is a fundamental message of the Scriptures that the Messiah had to suffer and die if he was one day to rule and reign (see, e.g., Luke 24:25-27, 44-47), a biblical truth that most of the Jewish people of Yeshua’s day missed, a biblical truth that most Jews through the ages have continued to miss, and a biblical truth that In Defense of Israel has now fed into as well.
In the clarifying statements that made since the publication of his book, it was explained that Jesus came to be the suffering Messiah but not the reigning Messiah – something, of course, that we all knew, and something that would hardly “shake Christian theology” – but these statements have simply introduced another nuance to the error, since nowhere in the New Testament is such a distinction made.

In other words, God did not say to Israel, “It’s fine that you rejected Jesus as Messiah because he did not come in the political way you expected. He had to die in order to be the Savior of the world, so you are not guilty.” There is not a hint of such a message in the Scriptures, which simply proclaim him as the Messiah, period.

That’s why Jesus explicitly identified himself as the Messiah in the Gospels (see, e.g., Matt 16:16-17; Mark 14:61-62; Luke 7:20-23; John 4:25-26; 5:39, 45-47; 10:24-25) – not as the suffering Messiah, whom his people were supposed to reject so that he could die, as opposed to the reigning Messiah, whom they would one day receive, but simply as the Messiah – and that’s why the Gospel authors frequently announced him as the Messiah (in Greek, the Christ; see, e.g., Luke 2:11, 26; John 1:41; 3:28; 11:27; 20:31). And that’s why the apostles proclaimed him as the Messiah in Acts (see, e.g., Acts 2:31, 36; 3:18, 20; 4:26; 5:42; 8:5; 9:22; 17:2-3; 18:5, 28; 26:23).

I would encourage you to look up every reference cited here. It is all quite simple, forthright, and easy to understand, and nowhere is any distinction made between the suffering and reigning Messiah. To repeat: Jesus is proclaimed as the Messiah of Israel, period, and because he is the Messiah of Israel, he is the Savior of the world.
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 2) The Jewish people rejected their Messiah. Although all Jews are not Christ-killers (God forbid!), and although the entire Jewish nation did not play a role in the crucifixion of Jesus, God held the Jewish people in Jesus’ day responsible for his death and, more significantly, he held them responsible for rejecting Jesus the Messiah after his resurrection. The New Testament witness is explicit and consistent on this.
That’s why the apostles preached to “the people of Israel” that they were guilty of rejecting the Messiah (Acts 2:22-23, 36; 3:13-15, 17, 19; 4:10-11; 5:30; 7:52; 13:27-28; see also John 1:12), and that’s why Paul spoke of Israel’s hardening, breaking off, stumbling, transgression, and rejection (see Rom 9:31; 10:3; 11:7, 11-12, 15, 20 – although with the full expectation of Israel’s future redemption; see Rom 11:11-15, 25-26). Again, I encourage you to take a moment to look up these passages. They are striking in their force and consistency.

Because of this rejection, severe judgment came on the Jewish people in the first century, as prophesied by Yeshua with tears (see Luke 19:41-44; see also Matt 23:29-37) and as taught in his parables (see, e.g., Matt 21:33-46; 22:1-14).

As painful as this witness is, it cannot be rewritten, nor can anyone lessen Israel’s guilt because it was God’s will that Jesus died on the cross. To the contrary, just as it was God’s will that Joseph be sold into Egyptian slavery and yet at the same time his brothers were guilty of sinning against him (Gen 44:16-45:5; 50:14-20), so also it was God’s will that Yeshua die for our sins while at the same time the Jewish people, along with Herod and Pilate and the Romans, were guilty of having him crucified (see Acts 2:22-24; 4:27-28).
It is scripturally impossible to claim that “the Jews cannot be blamed for not accepting what was never offered.” A glorious offer was made and refused, and that’s why Paul’s heart was broken (see Rom 9:1-5).
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3) Jesus remains the Jewish Messiah, and there is no salvation for the Jewish people outside of faith in him. Although Pastor Hagee has consistently stated that he does not teach “dual covenant” theology, referring to the false concept that Jews can be saved outside of faith in Jesus, his new teaching certainly aids and abets that error. After all, if “The Jews Did Not Reject Jesus as Messiah” (as stated in bold print in his book), and if “Jesus refused by word and deed to be the Messiah” (be it the “reigning Messiah” or not), then, not only can it be said that “the Jews [in Jesus’ day] cannot be blamed for not accepting what was never offered” but that the Jews in any day cannot be blamed for not accepting Yeshua.
This again is a fundamental denial of the Word of God, and although In Defense of Israel claims that the “message of the gospel was from Israel, not to Israel,” Jesus, Peter, and Paul declared that the message of the gospel was to Israel first, and then from Israel to the nations (see Luke 24:47; Acts 1:8; 3:26; 13:32-39; Rom 1:16; in Paul’s words to the Jewish leaders in Rome, it was “for the sake of the hope of Israel” that he was bound in chains; Acts 28:20).

To be sure, there are a number of other errors found in the critical section of In Defense of Israel (including the myth that there was a so-called cup of the Messiah, the alleged fourth cup of the Passover meal that Yeshua supposedly refused to drink), but this is not the place to address those concerns, and to focus on the smaller problems would detract from the larger picture.

If you are not currently on our e-list, I would encourage you to sign up (www.revolutionnow.org) today. And let’s continue to make the truth known: Yeshua is the Messiah of Israel, the King of the Jews, the Savior of the World!
In Him,
Michael L. Brown, Ph.D.
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Director, Coalition of Conscience (www.coalitionofconscience.org)
Host, Think It Thru TV (www.thinkitthru.tv)
Missionaries Try to Convert Jerusalem Kashrut Supervisor – Lose Certification It's never a good idea to try to convert the Rabbi. By: Jewish Press News Briefs Published: October 15th, 2013 Latest update: October 16th, 2013 print tell a friend Letter about Kashrut Revocation for Cafe Porta Letter about Kashrut Revocation for Cafe Porta Photo Credit: HaKol HaYehudi Following an investigation by the anti-missionary organization Yad L’Achim into ‘Cafe Porta’, located in the Clal building in Jerusalem, the organization reported to the Kashrut division of Jerusalem’s Religious Authority that the cafe appears to be a missionary center. Missionary activity is frowned upon in Israel, and illegal in certain circumstances. At first, the Kashrut division had no proof, nor any legal steps they could take against the cafe. But when the Kashrut division sent its own inspectors to check on the report, they were taken by surprise when the owners gave missionary material, including a New Testament, to the Kashrut supervisor, apparently in an attempt to begin the proselytization process on the Rabbi. Needless to say, the Kashrut certification for the cafe was immediately revoked.

Read more at: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/missionaries-try-to-convert-jerusalem-kashrut-supervisor/2013/10/15/
issionaries Try to Convert Jerusalem Kashrut Supervisor – Lose Certification It's never a good idea to try to convert the Rabbi. By: Jewish Press News Briefs Published: October 15th, 2013 Latest update: October 16th, 2013 print tell a friend Letter about Kashrut Revocation for Cafe Porta Letter about Kashrut Revocation for Cafe Porta Photo Credit: HaKol HaYehudi Following an investigation by the anti-missionary organization Yad L’Achim into ‘Cafe Porta’, located in the Clal building in Jerusalem, the organization reported to the Kashrut division of Jerusalem’s Religious Authority that the cafe appears to be a missionary center. Missionary activity is frowned upon in Israel, and illegal in certain circumstances. At first, the Kashrut division had no proof, nor any legal steps they could take against the cafe. But when the Kashrut division sent its own inspectors to check on the report, they were taken by surprise when the owners gave missionary material, including a New Testament, to the Kashrut supervisor, apparently in an attempt to begin the proselytization process on the Rabbi. Needless to say, the Kashrut certification for the cafe was immediately revoked.

Read more at: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/missionaries-try-to-convert-jerusalem-kashrut-supervisor/2013/10/15/