In Part 1 of this article, I emphasized exactly what it is in us that will help to draw Jewish people to jealousy, and I would encourage you to read it to help get the full picture from both of these articles.
It is indeed our own intimate and personal relationship with the G-d of Israel that can make Jewish people jealous, especially when they see the intimacy and sincerity we have in our faith as followers of Yeshua/Jesus. As you further develop your friendship with your Jewish friends or neighbors, they may also see and witness the two-dimensional aspect of our relationship with G-d in how He communicates back to us, which is completely foreign to most Jews and especially secular Jews. I can tell you, as a Jewish believer, that my people do not yet have this kind of intimacy with G-d, because they have not yet accepted Yeshua and come into the New Covenant (see Jer. 31:31-34).
Speaking generally, they are either ultra-orthodox and follow an extremely legalistic code or are secular Jews holding on to their traditions because they have rejected the first option. But who can blame them for that? Their own religion promotes such a ritualistic code and experience that controls their every movement, which can be extremely stifling for anyone to consider.
So, when you have opportunity to demonstrate your relationship with G-d, whether through prayer or some other circumstances that will help show your connection to G-d, you should jump at the opportunity. Whether they tell you or not, they will become curious by it, and it will impact them and further demonstrate the sincerity of your faith and your spiritual connection to G-d.
However, there are two other major factors that can make a huge difference in the way we communicate our faith toward Jewish people, and the first is how we present it. Please understand that Jewish people see Christianity as a totally separate religion, when in reality this could not be further from the truth. In fact, if Christ is G-d, then both believing and following Him is the only true and proper extension of Judaism, as Yeshua emphasized (see John 4:22) and the apostles themselves discovered, for Christianity is Jewish (see Rom. 11:16-24).
But when Rome took control of the church in the fourth century, Christians disconnected themselves from their Jewish roots and the church became quite Gentile in its approach, no longer wanting to have anything to do with its Jewish past except to see themselves through Israel’s covenants and Scriptures.
As a result, while we may have all good intentions in communicating our faith back to Jews in a normal Christian manner that would be perfectly acceptable to another Gentile person, when sharing our faith with Jewish people, it isn't, and we run the risk of missing the mark of our calling to draw them to jealousy. We need to be making them envious that what we have actually also belongs to them, rather than presenting it as a separate faith.
Do you get my point here? When wanting to bring the gospel back to the Jewish people, we need to learn how to bring it to them in a reconnected manner that substantiates the Jewishness of the New Covenant, which was given to them by the L-rd before it was given to the nations.
Please do not misunderstand me here. I am not suggesting that we go back to the law, but rather reconnect spiritually to the roots of our faith, which will help us dramatically in how we share Yeshua. As a Jew, when I accepted the L-rd, I did not give up my Jewishness, but instead found its true path as well as its fulfillment in Christ.
It may help to think of that olive tree that the apostle Paul spoke of in Romans 11 to fully appreciate what G-d has done by grafting Gentile believers into a Jewish root, even though at present most of Israel is still broken off. Listen to what the apostle Paul says: “After all, if you were cut out of an olive tree that is wild by nature, and contrary to nature were grafted into a cultivated olive tree, how much more readily will these, the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree!” (Rom. 11:24).
If we approach Jews with the lingo of the Gentile branch, we should not be surprised that it is foreign to them, because they can only really begin to relate to it as it was intended, when it is presented back to them in a Jewish manner that will allow them to connect more naturally to their own root, which was how I was led to faith by my Christian friend.
The apostle Paul was a master at this, moving as a Jew to reach Jews and moving as a Gentile to reach Gentiles. But what counted most was that the gospel went out in a way that it could more easily be received and accepted (see 1 Cor. 9:19-22).
The difference now, however, is that in order for us to be effective in reaching Israel, we need to reconnect our Christianity to its Jewish roots, especially as we enter this time of transition in the kingdom of G-d to bring in the fullness of the Gentiles and the spiritual awakening of the Jewish people (see Rom. 11:25-26).
We not only need to reach them, but also to connect with them as our spiritual family and see them by faith until they come in, which must take place before Jesus returns. That indeed, we would truly become one in the Spirit, all the children in G-d’s family, as per Jesus’ prayer in John 17. For ultimately, we will rule and reign with Israel after their spiritual redemption has taken place.
I believe this to be G-d’s end time mercy plan to finally unite us, but who is going to reach them with the gospel and the love of G-d? (see Rev. 5:9-10). Will G-d do this on His own and without us? I don’t think so, as He always uses man to bring about His purposes—read Hebrews 11.
Israel is like no other people in light of G-d’s covenants and promises to them as His firstborn children. For these reasons alone, we should know their redemption is drawing near and that indeed we have a major role to play in order to reach them, which I will discuss in future articles.
The second major factor is that we need to gain a much deeper understanding of the things that now keep Jewish people separate from their own Messiah. It is not just because their leaders rejected Christ, but much more now because of the horrible persecution that was bestowed upon them through church and Gentile ancestry over the past 1,800 years. As a result, there are tremendous blocks in the bloodline for any Jewish person to believe in Yeshua, because of what has been done to their ancestry in the name of Christ.
You can read about my own story in how G-d helped me to overcome my resistance in my first book, The New Covenant Prophecy. This is why Jewish people have such an aversion to anything Christian and especially Christian symbols, as to them it reminds them of great suffering and torment.
While we may think that no true Christian would have done such things, which itself is another topic of discussion, this does not negate the Jews' perception of Christianity. It is really important for us to understand and grasp this, as in so doing it will help us to lovingly defuse these barriers in our witness toward them to help break them down, which the devil has been using to keep them from faith.
As a result, up to this point, except for the grace of G-d through a remnant, as well as His future timing to awaken Israel, belief in Yeshua has simply not been an option for Jewish people. This is one of the main reasons we must gain a better understanding of the past, in order for us all to find G-d’s healing and reconciliation during these days, both Jew and Gentile alike. For neither group has been innocent here, but G-d’s heart and plan is that He would use all of this to show His love and mercy on all of His children (see Rom. 11:28-32).
Simply put, Israel must be awakened, and the family of G-d must be connected; this is an essential part of G-d’s plan to reunite His family upon the earth, so that Christ may return and take dominion of it. For us in the church to come into a greater understanding of our calling to win Israel back to faith, to arouse them with our own new covenant relationship with their G-d and for Israel to ultimately receive salvation—what an honor He has actually bestowed upon us in the church!
In next month’s exclusive article for Standing With Israel, I will help to equip you to improve your witness and connection toward the Jewish people.
Next two articles by Reconnecting Ministries:
- The Dos and Don’ts of Jewish Evangelism
- End Time Roles
Grant Berry is a Jewish believer in Yeshua/Jesus and author of The New Covenant Prophecy and The Ezekiel Generation. He has founded Reconnecting Ministries with the specific focus to help the church reconnect spiritually to Israel and considers it vital to the kingdom of G-d in the last days. His message focuses on the unity, love and healing that the Father wants to bring between Jew and Gentile yet clearly points out the differences and misunderstandings between the two groups. Now is the time to look more carefully into this mystery to make way for healing and reconnection in the Spirit. For more information, please visit reconnectingministries.org.