About | Press Room
This page contains some general information about Jews for Jesus as well as links to our current press releases, recent “Jews for Jesus in the News” articles, a fact sheet with the questions most often asked of us by the press, and a detailed history and timeline. Bios of those available for interviews as well as stock photos can also be found here, along with the contact information you need to set up an interview.
Integrity of Barna Data on Jewish Millennials Called into Question by Some Jewish Leaders. Jews for Jesus Responds:
The results of a recently released study by the Barna Group, Jewish Millennials: The Beliefs and Behaviors Shaping Young Jews in America, have been called into question by some Jewish leaders. This reaction is emotional and unfounded.read more
Jews for Jesus in the News
Barna Jewish Millennial Study
After Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, The Jewish Daily Forward published this article on October 26, 2016: “How Bob Dylan Became a Jews for Jesus Icon.” The author, Sam Kestenbaum, includes a Jews for Jesus Facebook post, with a link to an article in our ISSUES publication about Dylan. Kestenbaum gives an overview of Dylan’s history with Messianic Judaism.
A Jewish Daily Forward article on November 30, 2016, “Are Jews for Jesus a Secret Weapon in Anti-Semitism Fight With the ‘Alt-Right’?” notes that Jewish believers in Jesus are advocating regularly for the Jews and Israel. The author points out that major Messianic groups consider the fight against anti-Semitism an important part of their mission.
Jews for Jesus, David Brickner, Executive Director Profile
Jews for Jesus
DAVID BRICKNER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Born in Beverly, Massachusetts, in 1958, David Brickner was raised in a Messianic Jewish home. A fifth-generation Jewish believer in Jesus on his
mother’s side, Brickner considers himself living proof that following Jesus does not lead a person to abandon one’s Jewish identity.
Brickner became executive director of Jews for Jesus in May 1996. He oversees the daily operations of the ministry’s international work from its San Francisco headquarters. Brickner has advanced Jews for Jesus internationally and has launched the ministry into multimedia, video, the Internet and social media. Brickner has authored books on Jewish faith, festivals and Bible prophecy, including Christ in the Feast of Tabernacles. He has appeared on national radio and television programs, including Larry King Live. Brickner received his theological training at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Judaica from Northeastern Illinois University, in conjunction with Spertus College of Judaica, in 1986. He received his Master of Arts degree in Missiology with an emphasis on Jewish Studies from the Fuller School of Missions in Pasadena, California, in 1993.
An avid hiker, he lives in San Francisco.
Jews for Jesus, Susan Perlman, Associate Executive Director Profile
Jews for Jesus
SUSAN PERLMAN, ASSOCIATE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Susan Perlman was born and raised in a “somewhat” Orthodox home in
Brooklyn, New York. Like many of her contemporaries, she involved herself in the social and political causes of the late ’60s and early ’70s. Susan came to believe in Yeshua (Jesus) after a street encounter with Christian rock singer Larry Norman. Not long after that encounter, Perlman heard of a loosely-formed movement of Jews like herself who believed in Jesus. She moved to San Francisco and became one of the founders of the Jews for Jesus organization, where she used her experience as an advertising copywriter and social activist to help shape its communication methods. Perlman is the founder and editor in chief of ISSUES, a bimonthly publication for Jewish people who are willing to give serious consideration to the question: “Who is Jesus?”
Perlman has served as communications director since the organization’s
founding in 1973. She serves on the executive board of the premier umbrella agency for North American mission organizations. She is also on the Board of Regents of Dallas Theological Seminary.
Jews for Jesus, Dan Sered, Israel Director Profile
Jews for Jesus
DAN SERED, ISRAEL DIRECTOR
Dan Sered was born in Israel on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, in 1978. His upbringing, like that of many Israelis, was secular, though he was bar mitzvah at age thirteen. Two years later, his family moved to New York, where Dan attended Stony Brook University and met Dinah, a Jewish believer in Jesus. Dinah told Dan that she believed in Yeshua. He had never heard that name before, so he asked Dinah who she was talking about. She said that Yeshua is
the Hebrew name for Jesus. Dan knew that Yeshua means “salvation,” and after
studying the prophecies in the Hebrew Scriptures concerning the Messiah, he came to believe that Yeshua is the one that he and the Jewish people have been waiting for. Dan and Dinah were married in August 1999 and joined the Jews for Jesus organization shortly thereafter. In August 2000, they moved to Israel, where they have served with the ministry ever since. In 2006, Dan was appointed director of Jews for Jesus Israel, the organization’s largest branch. In 2013 Dan completed his Master of Arts degree in Jewish Ministry and Leadership from Western Seminary. The Sereds have three children: Yael, Eithan and Yoav.
We relentlessly pursue God’s plan for the salvation of the Jewish people.
Sharing the Message
Using contemporary themes and issues, Jews for Jesus communicates the message that Jesus is the Messiah in cities with major Jewish populations worldwide. We are on the cutting edge of creative communications through print, art, video and web platforms to engage with seekers about the message and person of Jesus:
- Pamphlet and postcard distribution, known as “broadsiding”
- Most accessed website in the Messianic movement
- Facebook page with more than 770,000 likes
- YouTube videos, including “That Jew Died for You,” which received more than one million views
- Banners, billboards and subway car advertisements
- Books, blogs, newsletters and podcasts
- Jewish art, music and films
The phrase “Jews for Jesus” began as a simple slogan in the early 1970s. Coined by the media, the slogan became the rallying cry of a movement, and Jews for Jesus the organization was founded in 1973 by Dr. Moishe Rosen. Starting as a small cadre of young Jewish believers in Jesus in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco, the organization has gone global under David Brickner, who has served as executive director since 1996. Over its 44-year history, Jews for Jesus has expanded to thirteen countries and 25 cities around the world and has embraced new, creative modes of ministry to keep up with today’s technology. A timeline with a more comprehensive history can be found here.
Headquartered in San Francisco, Jews for Jesus has branch offices in thirteen countries. Branch sites can be found in the United States, Israel, Germany, Hungary, England, France, Switzerland, Russia, Ukraine, South Africa, Australia, Canada and one undisclosed location. In the U.S., branches are located in San Francisco, New York, Washington, D.C., Fort Lauderdale, Chicago, Phoenix and Los Angeles.
Organization and Staff
Jews for Jesus is a not-for-profit, 501(c)3 organization. It is governed by a sixteen-member U.S. board of directors and a nine-person international strategy council, with 240 full-time missionary and administrative staff on board.
Jews for Jesus has 125 trained volunteers in the U.S., Mexico and Canada.
Jews for Jesus is a charter member of MissioNexus and the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA). Jews for Jesus complies with ECFA’s standards and guidelines, including submission to an annual financial audit.
In 1987, the United States Supreme Court sided with Jews for Jesus in the case of Board of Airport Commissioners of Los Angeles v. Jews for Jesus, Inc. The Court declared that Los Angeles International Airport’s ban on “first amendment activities,” which it had used to prohibit Jews for Jesus from distributing literature at the airport, was overly broad and therefore unconstitutional. In 1998, Jews for Jesus set a precedent for Internet case law by successfully suing Steven Brodsky for cybersquatting— registering the jewsforjesus.org domain name for a site criticizing the organization. The domain now belongs to Jews for Jesus and is used for our main site.
When did Jews for Jesus begin?
While the movement is as old as first-century Christianity, the modern-day organization was incorporated in September 1973 in California. An outgrowth of the Jesus Movement of the early '70s, Jews for Jesus was founded by then 38-year-old Moishe Rosen, a Jew who had come to believe in Jesus years earlier and was serving as a missionary to Jewish people. Along with a handful of Jews in their early twenties, the group experimented with original music, drama and home-made literature to communicate their story. Major news outlets picked up on it, and “Jews for Jesus” became a national phenomenon.
What’s the size and location(s) of the Jews for Jesus organization today?
Jews for Jesus has a worldwide staff of 240, with branches in 13 countries and 25 cities. Its international headquarters is located in San Francisco where the organization first began. Some of its key branches are in New York, Tel Aviv, Paris, London, Toronto, Los Angeles and Moscow. To view more information on any of the branches, click here.
Some have labeled the Jews for Jesus organization deceptive. How does the organization respond to those charges?
We believe in truth in advertising. All of our missionary staff are born Jewish or married to Jews. Within our organization, we embrace Jewish culture, practice and symbols because they reflect who we are as Jewish people. Jews for Jesus also uses Jewish symbols in the same way Jesus himself did—to explain biblical truth. For example, Jesus took matzah (Passover bread) and said, “This is my body.” Jews for Jesus does not see this as deceptive, but as a way to explain biblical truth.
What is the difference between Jews for Jesus and Messianic Jews?
Messianic Jews are not necessarily a uniform group. We express a wide range of opinions and can live out Jewish identity in very different ways. For some, it is merely a matter of semantics, since both terms describe a Jewish individual who follows Jesus as Messiah. However, Jews for Jesus is also the name of this nonprofit organization, which brings that message to Jews who are seeking to know more. The term "Messianic Jews" is also regarded as a worldwide movement of both Jews and Gentiles wherein messianic congregations, umbrella groups like the Union of Messianic Jewish Congregations (UMJC), the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America (MJAA), and organizations like Jews for Jesus are included.
How many Jews believe in Jesus?
Estimates range from as low as 30,000 to as high as 125,000 worldwide. The largest concentration of Jews who believe in Jesus is in the United States, followed by Israel. However, there is no way to take a really accurate census of Jewish believers in Jesus because there is no membership to join.
Does your organization convert Jews to Christianity?
We do not believe that a Jewish person would need to undergo a conversion process to become a follower of Jesus any more than someone from China would need to renounce their Chinese heritage in order to embrace Jesus. Jewish identity can be both ethnic and religious. Our Jewishness is a matter of birth. Our faith in Christ is a matter of choice. Besides, if Jesus really is who he claimed to be, the Jewish Messiah, becoming his follower would be a continuation of our Jewish faith, not an abandonment of it.
Do your staff identify as Jews or Christians?
The term Christian derives from the Greek word Christos, a translation of the biblical term “Mashiach”, or Messiah. So in its most simple definition, a Christian is a follower of Messiah. Just like the disciples of Jesus and the authors of the New Testament, we are Jewish followers of the Messiah—one hundred percent Jewish and one hundred percent Christian.
Are you a Zionist organization?
Jews for Jesus is a one-issue organization whose purpose is to share the good news about Jesus with our Jewish people. Our staff in Tel Aviv, while mostly comprised of Israeli Jewish believers, also includes some Arab Christians. We are supportive of Israel; at the same time, the Bible calls us to be ambassadors of reconciliation. Thus, we applaud the efforts of Arab and Jewish believers who are working to be united as brothers and sisters. We do our best to walk in this unity.
Who are the spokespeople for the organization?
David Brickner, the executive director of Jews for Jesus, is our principal spokesperson. He is a fifth-generation Messianic Jew. He has appeared on Larry King Live, Hannity and other national talk shows. Susan Perlman, our communications director, is one of Jews for Jesus’ founders. She’s done extensive media interviews, as well. Dan Sered, our Israel director, leads the largest branch of Jews for Jesus. A native of Israel, he has presented the Jews for Jesus story on national Israeli television on several occasions.
Note: Additional representatives are available on certain issues where their expertise would be helpful.
Quotes for press kit
Jesus was born in Israel, not Norway. We want others to know of his connection to our Jewish people.
Our organization here in the Holy Land is evidence that Jesus is not only for the Jewish people, but the Savior of the world.
If Jesus is the messiah at all, he is the messiah for all.
I grew up in a Jewish home where believing in Jesus was not an option. It took a blond-haired, blue-eyed Gentile sharing Jesus’ story with me for me to recognize the gospel was for me.
The first Jews for Jesus had names like Peter, Paul and John. They changed the world of their day. We’re looking to do the same today.
We live in a world where people are looking for a reason for hope and a future. We believe that Jesus (Yeshua, as we call him in Hebrew) is that future and hope.
Truth is not determined by a majority vote. We don’t mind holding a minority position on Jesus as messiah.
Be more Jewish. Believe in Jesus.
Jesus made me kosher!
Please email your contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org. Include your name as well as your media outlet if it is not in the email address.
Director of Communications, Missionary
Susan Perlman is one of the co-founders of Jews for Jesus. Susan is the associate executive director of Jews for Jesus and also director of communications for the organization. She also serves as the editor in chief of ISSUES, their evangelistic publication for Jewish seekers. She left a career track in New York City to help launch Jews for Jesus in San Francisco in the early 1970s. See more here.